Car care 101: Essential tips for every motorist

Cars are an integral part of our daily lives. They get us to work, outings, or long-awaited holidays. But, much like any other possession, they need consistent care to ensure they’re running at their best. With Hoot’s various service plans available, we understand car care inside and out. For some, however, taking care of a car might seem a bit overwhelming. Here are some easy-to-follow car care tips that anyone can implement.

6 essential car care tips

1. Regularly check tyre pressure

Improper tyre pressure can reduce fuel efficiency and compromise safety. Ensure you check your tyre pressure once a month. Visit your nearest service station and ask an attendant to check your tyre pressure using a tyre pressure gauge.

How do I know what the correct tyre pressure is?

Did you know the ideal tyre pressure isn’t one size fits all? It varies depending on the make and model of your car. Factors like load and driving speed influence it. Tyre pressure is measured in units such as kPa (kilopascal), psi (pounds per square inch), or bars. In South Africa, we predominantly use bars as our unit of measurement.

Wondering where to find this specific information for your car? Simply look out for a tyre pressure sticker that’s often located:

  • Inside the driver’s side door
  • Within the cubby hole
  • Inside the fuel cap
  • Under the bonnet

It’s worth noting that some cars even have different pressure requirements between the front and rear tyres.

A close-up view of hands checking a vehicle's tyre.

2. Keep it clean

Incorporate cleaning into your car care regimen. Dirt and debris not only damage your car’s paint but can affect its performance too. Regular cleaning prevents long-term damage and maintains your car’s resale value. And hey, who doesn’t love the look of a sparkling clean car?

3. Top up fluids

Your car relies on various fluids to run smoothly. From brake fluid to engine oil, keeping them at optimal levels is crucial. Most cars have easily accessible dipsticks or reservoirs to check levels.

Looking for a plan to cover fluid replacements? The Hoot Service Mobility plan covers differential oil, brake fluid, and transmission fluid.

A male mechanic in a blue outfit checking the vehicles oil.

4. Wipers and lights

A clear vision is essential, especially during unpredictable weather. Your Hoot Wear and Tear plan has you covered with new front and rear wiper sets for your car. So, make sure your wiper blades are in top shape and replace them as soon as they begin to streak. Additionally, regularly inspect your headlights, brake lights, and indicators. These car care steps are pivotal for safety.

5. Check your brake pads

Your brake pads play a crucial role in stopping your car safely. But like all things, they wear out over time. Here’s a quick guide to knowing when they need attention:

Signs your brake pads are fading:

  • Squealing noises: Some pads make a noise when they’re thinning.
  • Grinding sounds: This suggests the pads have worn too much.
  • Longer stopping times: Worn-out brakes reduce efficiency.
  • Visible grooves in the rotor: Indicates brake wear.
  • Pedal pulsation: A telltale sign when braking.
  • Car veers when braking: Points to uneven brake wear.

Are you feeling the pinch with those unexpected wear and tear costs? Check out our Hoot Wear and Tear plan and everything it covers.

*Please note that our Hoot Mobility Plans are NOT insurance products and that mechanical and electrical breakdowns are not covered under this plan. We will always make sure we are transparent with our offerings, that is our promise to you.

A close-up view of hands checking the vehicles breaks.

6. Listen to your car

Often, our cars give us audible cues when something’s amiss. Whether it’s a squeaky brake or a rattle beneath the bonnet, don’t ignore these sounds. Addressing them early could prevent more severe issues down the line.

Service plans tailored to you

At Hoot, we aim to ensure you remain confidently in the driver’s seat. Require a more tailored service plan? Reach out to us and discover how our dedicated team can cater to you and your car’s unique requirements.