Car issues can happen to anyone at any time.
It doesn’t matter if you own a car, truck, or SUV—from your oil filter to your fan belt to your brakes—things can go wrong.
As a trusted local mechanic in Tyler, Texas, Stewart’s Donnybrook Automotive has seen just about every car issue imaginable.
Something important we’ve learned in our many years of experience in car repair, maintenance, roadside assistance/ evening and weekend assistance is:
Being aware of car issues and taking action to make repairs, get an oil change, or take your vehicle to your local garage for a fix can save you a lot of money and difficulty down the road (so to say).
Here’s a list of the 7 most common car issues to be aware of:
1. Warning Lights
Always pay attention to your dashboard warning lights. Unfortunately, too many drivers treat those lights as an annoyance rather than a method for your car to communicate an issue with you. Whether it’s your check engine, airbag, fuel level, emergency brake, or any other dashboard warning lights a vehicle might have, they’re there for a reason. Ignoring those lights could lead to expensive repairs and even a breakdown.
If you’re unsure what a certain light means, go to your manual…the large piece of helpful reading material in the glove box most people forget about. The manual will help explain what particular warning lights your specific vehicle has and what they mean.
If you’re still not sure, make an appointment with your local mechanic and have your vehicle checked out. When it comes to your vehicle, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
There are a lot of things that can go wrong with brakes.
Even the term “brakes” is a bit misleading, so let’s start there.
Your car has front brakes and back brakes. The back brakes help stabilize your car when you need to slow down, while the front brakes take the brunt of the brake force when you try to stop the car.
You also have brake pads within your brakes. These components can become worn, causing you to hear a grinding or squeaking noise when you step on the brakes. This isn’t a good sound. If you hear it, you should bring your car in right away and have your brakes checked. Having your brakes fail is one worry you don’t want while driving. A little awareness, a checkup, and some brake maintenance can make the difference between a normal day’s commute and a very scary situation.
The two main things to be aware of when it comes to tire maintenance are air pressure and wear on your treads.
Especially if you do a lot of driving, regularly check the tread of your tires to ensure they’re not getting too worn. If they become worn, it could be dangerous when you need to slow down. Especially if the roads are wet.
In addition, it’s important to make sure your tires maintain proper air pressure. If your tires are losing air, that could mean you have a leak, hole, or something in your tire. Whatever it is, if you don’t get it attended to right away, you risk having a flat tire. Changing a tire on the side of the road isn’t great under any circumstances, but it’s also dangerous.
Keep your tires maintained and schedule regular tire rotations to make sure they’re in the best possible condition for your daily drives.
4. Over-consuming Oil
If you suddenly notice that your vehicle is consuming more oil than usual, there might be an issue.
Is your oil light coming on more often? Do you notice issues with your engine?
You might have an oil problem.
In particular, you might have an oil leak.
Take your vehicle to your local mechanic and have them check things over to see what the issue might be. Very often, it’s a matter of corrosion that causes the leak.
Either way, getting it fixed as soon as possible is crucial, as running out of oil could ruin your engine.
5. Fluid Leaks
When you have an oil change, your trusted local mechanic should be able to diagnose if you have any fluid leaks.
One area to check in particular is the radiator. If you lose too much radiator fluid, there’s a good chance your car could overheat. You don’t want to be the person on the side of the road—like you see in movies—with an open hood and steam shooting out of your radiator because your car’s overheating.
It’s also important to check your transmission fluid.
Regular servicing by your local garage will help prevent problems with fluid leaks, but it’s also something good to be aware of yourself. For example, if you see fluid on the ground after you drive away, there’s a chance your vehicle is leaking. Be aware of where it might be coming from and get your car checked out immediately to prevent a potential breakdown later.
6. Electrical Issues
Electrical issues can be anything from your lights: headlights, brake lights, overhead lights, etc. To your car’s battery.
No matter what, electric issues are something to be aware of and get fixed right away.
Changing lightbulbs can prevent a safety issue, not to mention a good way to avoid being pulled over.
7. Day-to-Day Wear
Especially if you have a long commute or often drive over rough terrain, you’re putting a lot of wear and tear on your vehicle.
Be aware of the day-to-day stress you’re putting on your car, truck, or SUV, and know what might need maintenance or repairs soon.
Keeping up on your vehicle and being aware of potential issues can save you a lot regarding both money and time. Call your local mechanic ASAP if you notice any issues with your vehicle!