If there is one thing that so many Gen Zs and millennials cherish is owning a ride as they fondly call it. If you doubt this then it’s possible to try out a social experiment of approaching random groups of youths and teenagers to ask what they would spend their first large savings or income on. Now when you buy a first car or already have one, the greatest nightmare comes when something needs to be fixed. As a car owner, you simply have to know when to visit a mechanic before the small problem becomes, big, bigger and then completely run out of hand.
Through self inspection of your car, you can easily identify which parts are loose, not firmly mounted or broken. Early detection of mechanical problems on your car is a great way to save you from large expenses. We here highlight some of the signs that soon you Need to take your car to the mechanic.
Other than being a significant investment, having your own car is very convenient. As such, it’s necessary to ensure it remains in good condition at all times. Regular car service and maintenance is essential. However, it might be expensive and you could find yourself missing an appointment or two.
Fortunately, there are warning signs that you might get and which indicate that your car needs service. The trick is to be on the lookout for these warning signs and not ignore them. They are usually a sign that all is not well with your car and attending to them will not only save costs but more serious issues. Here are a few signs to look out for.
1. Problems when starting the car
Whenever your car has starting issues , just know that problems are setting in. It even gets worse when you have just planned a trip, prepared to take off, then the car fails to start or forces a jump start.
In fact, your car failing to start can be very frustrating if you are late for work or an appointment. A car in good condition should start right away, so if you are having trouble starting your car, it might be time to see the mechanic. The same applies to when your car won’t keep running because it could be a sign of a weak battery or something else.
2. Sporadic or regular stalling of the car
Car stalling can be very discomforting and annoying all in equal measure. This stalling gets nerve wracking especially when you have stopped at a red light. Remember the stalling may be extremely dangerous in high traffic because all other drivers around expect you to be maintaining the recommended speed. Those who find themselves in such situations get anxiety shocks which may result in an accident situation. In short it’s never amusing to find oneself in this situation.
This could be a wakeup call to visit the mechanic for some maintenance and service. Another common sign could be a sputtering engine whenever you push on the accelerator pedal. The bad news is, this could be a sign of a bigger issue with your car. It might not be long before your car stalls in the middle of a busy intersection. Your best bet is to visit a mechanic after the first time the car stalls; it could be a recipe for disaster.
3. Blinking Check Engine Light
A blinking “check engine” light is usually a sign of an issue with your car’s system. So, whenever you notice it flashing, you should have your car checked by a professional. The earlier you have it checked out, the safer for you and your car. You might also feel like the car is not running as it should whenever you drive it. It could mean that many systems in your car have a problem and it’s time to visit an auto repair service to get it fixed.
4. Smoke coming out from the hood
Having smoke coming out from the hood of your car is never a good sign. It could mean that you have neglected your car for far too long. In more severe cases, you might detect a burning smell from the hood. You should visit the auto-repair service to check if something is wrong with your engine or the surrounding electronics.
However, in most cases, smoke could mean that your radiator is either overheated or parched. Therefore, it helps to keep an eye on the temperature gauge and store a bottle of coolant in your car. Also remember that the combustion of some excess oil can also produce smoke. It still wouldn’t hurt to see your mechanic.
5. Excess Smoke from the Vehicle’s Exhaust
You might notice an extraordinary amount of smoke coming out of your car’s exhaust. It could also be followed by a burning scent that could be an indication that you have an oil leak. However, you should be careful not to confuse this with the smoke that comes out from the exhaust when it is cold. It is usually caused by vapor from the condensed moisture in the exhaust system and it’s normal. It shouldn’t worry you since it will disappear before long. The problem comes if the smoke is black and is accompanied by a burning smell.
6. Car transmission problems
Most experienced drivers will notice any slight difference to the car whenever they are on the wheels. This skill is essential in noticing any transmission issues immediately they occur. If you are not a seasoned driver, there are things to watch out for. Examples include hearing strange noises and an acceleration delay. The car transmission is what will really keep it in motion so if this is failing, visit a mechanic as soon as possible. Only a certified and professional mechanic will sort this out for you.
7. Leaks from any part of the car
Unlike other issues, leaks are the easiest to spot as soon as you park your car. However, remember that a clear puddle under your car during summer is normal. It is usually caused by the AC and should be no cause for concern. Trouble comes when you observe a green or black liquid dripping from your car. It could be your coolant, transmission fluid, or engine oil and can indicate an engine or radiator issue.
8. Poor gas mileage
Any car owner knows the importance of keeping track of their fuel consumption. Fuel prices worldwide are on an all-time high and continue to rise daily. Which is why whenever you notice an abnormal increase in fuel consumption, you should see your mechanic. It’s usually an indication that your vehicle’s fuel efficiency is low. It can be caused by low tire pressure, clogged air filters, or some more serious problems.
9. Abnormal Sounds
Unexplained sounds can be anything from groans, humming, creaks, pops, to squeals. They are usually an indication that one or more components of your car has a problem. You should identify the source of the problem then take your car to the mechanic.
The common causes of such unexplained sounds from your car could be wear and tear of the braking pads or rotors or changing of your brake fluid. However, they could also be due to broken components, low fluid level, or worn belt.
10. Jerky Shifting
All cars including automatic cars have to shift gears whenever you speed up or slow down. A well-functioning car should shift gears smoothly and will barely be noticeable. On the other hand, a problematic one will produce clunks or grating noises. This problem should be a pointer that its time to visit the mechanic and get a trouble shoot of the problem.
11. Shaky/ unstable Vehicle
Whenever you feel your car shaking while you are driving followed by strange noises, it could mean it has a problem. In most cases it means that the suspension of your car has a problem. Bumpy rides could also be caused by worn-out shock absorbers or a bad tie rod end that could be affecting the wheels of your car. Your best bet is to visit a mechanic as soon as possible. However, to avoid any of the above mentioned problems, you should keep up with regular car service and maintenance. If not, then try as much as possible to identify any challenges at the budding stage.