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Five Ways to Maintain a Car

A driver does not necessarily need a mechanic to maintain a car. Vehicle owners can perform several car maintenance tasks at home with some basic tools. With internet access and a proper video player, motorists can easily access "how to" videos to accomplish the following car maintenance tasks at home:

Change the Air Filter

An engine's air filter captures dust, dirt and particles that can fly through the engine while driving causing lowered performance and burning more fuel. Instead of taking the car to a mechanic to replace the air filter, a driver can simply lift the hood of the car, locate the plastic box next to the engine and remove the old air filter. Make note of the position the air filter is in and then replace with a new one in the exact same location. Then reattach the box with its screws and clips to complete the job.

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Change the Oil

Changing a car's oil can be a bit tricky on the first try, but a driver can easily perform this task at home with a socket wrench and drain pan as well as the correct grade of oil and new filter. The driver must first let the old oil run out through the drain plug under the car and into the draining pan. Remove the old filter and replace it with the new one. The last step is to lift the front hood and pour the new oil in with a funnel. Use the dipstick to measure if it is enough oil. Make sure not to engage in this activity after recently turning off the car, as hot oil can burn skin and cause serious damage.

Replace the Windshield Wipers

A driver does not need a mechanic for the easy task of replacing a car's windshield wipers. Simply push the tab on the wiper's underside and slide the old blade up and off the arm. Then, lower the new rubber blade onto the arm and make sure it clicks in place. Most purchased windshield wipers include a picture diagram for additional simplicity. New windshield wipers can improve a driver's visibility during rain.

Replace the Headlight Bulbs

Most cars have an accessible port for the headlight bulbs that can be reached by lifting the hood and removing the harness wire from the bulb holder. The driver only has to firmly pull the old bulb out and click the new bulb into place, then reattach the bulb holder in its original location.

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Change the Fuses

The fuse box holds small pieces that look like computer chips and is usually under the steering wheel or in the glove compartment. These electrical components affect things like dashboard lights and stereo function. A driver only has to locate the fuse box, pull out the blown fuse and replace it with a new one to fix minor electrical problems inside the car.