Your vehicle is probably an essential part of your daily routine. This is especially true if you live rurally and public transport simply isn’t an option. Your vehicle allows you to take your children to school, get to work, undertake food shopping, and a multitude of other essential tasks.
That’s why it’s a serious issue when it’s off the road. To help prevent serious problems from developing it’s a good idea to have your vehicle regularly serviced. You can check out here to find a reputable mechanic. You should also be aware of the most common signs that you have an automotive problem.
Puddles On The Drive
If your car has air conditioning fitted you may find a small puddle of water on your driveway after you’ve been driving and using the air conditioner. This is normal and is a result of the unit removing moisture from the air as it cools it.
However, if you move your vehicle and see any other puddles then it’s safe to assume there is an issue. Oil is generally black and can come from the engine or the transmission. Hydraulic fluid is a brown-yellow colour and could be from the power steering, brakes, or even the suspension.
Noting where it is on the vehicle will help your mechanic identify and deal with the problem.
You know your car better than anyone else. That’s why you will be the first to notice a strange noise coming from it. If your car is making a knocking noise then you may have an engine issue or it could be suspension linked. Grinding noises tend to be related to braking systems and squealing can also be brakes but could be the belts on your engine.
It’s important to identify which it is in order to fix the issue before it gets worse.
All vehicles with combustion engines produce exhaust smoke. It is normally more visible in low temperatures and invisible when the engine and the environment are warm.
If you notice coloured smoke coming from your car then it has an issue. The most common is blue smoke.
Blue smoke tells you that oil is being burnt with the fuel. The two are not supposed to mix. In the short term, you’ll need to monitor and regularly top up your oil. Ultimately the seals inside your engine need to be replaced to stop the oil and fuel mixing.
White smoke tells you there is water in the exhaust. Again, topping up your coolant regularly can help in the short term. However, there is a good chance this means the head gasket is failing. The sooner this is repaired the better as, if left, it can warp your head and cause a much bigger repair bill.
Black smoke tells you the air filter is becoming clogged and needs to be cleaned or replaced. If this doesn’t solve the issue then you may have a problem with your fuel/air mix, potentially due to a bad fuel injector or pressure regulator.
Alongside these signs, you should always get your vehicle checked out if any of the warning lights come on.