With the ever-increasing prices of car repairs, professional labor, and replacement parts, it’s easy to find the appeal in simply completing repairs yourself to save some money. However, there’s always a good amount of risk involved in performing your own car repairs, and there are definitely some that you should leave to the professionals.
Repairs related to your car’s transmission, engine block, fuel pump, suspension, and even simple ones that require precision, such as a simple fender-bender, are some instances when your car needs to receive top-notch repair services. There are many repairs that those with little to no experience can perform successfully, provided that they avoid these common DIY car repair mistakes.
Ignoring the User Manual
Your user manual contains important information and expert advice on how to perform basic repairs on your car. It also details the maintenance schedule, the types of fluids to use on your car, as well as where the jack points are on the frame of your car. Never ignore the information contained in the user manual, as this will also help you determine whether or not you can perform a particular repair with the tools you currently have.
Using the Wrong Tools
Before attempting any repair, it’s important to determine which tools you’ll need for the job. If you don’t have the tools, you need to determine whether it’s financially practical for you to buy the ones you need to complete the repair, or if you would be better off getting a professional to complete them instead. Using the wrong tools may not only make the task more difficult, it may cause more damage to your car.
Jacking Up the Car At the Wrong Points
Most people think that it’s okay to jack the car up anywhere along the underchassis. This is wrong, as there are designated jack points where the jack can be placed without causing damage to the car’s frame. These points may be difficult to find at first glance, but they are easily identifiable after consulting your owner’s manual. Jacking up your car at these points prevents damage to your car and it also aids in creating a stable base while you work on your car.
Using the Wrong Fluids
Using the wrong fluid type for your car can cause severe damage in the long run. There are many types of coolants, oils, transmission fluids to choose from, each with varying characteristics in terms of weight and type. Luckily, determining the right type of fluid to use is just a matter of consulting your owner’s manual.
Failing to Organize Parts
With the right tools, taking something apart can be relatively easy. Reassembling that particular part is a different story especially if it’s your first time reassembling a part. It’s important to document the disassembly process to aid you in reassembling the part properly. Organize the parts by labelling them to help make reassembly easier.
Car repairs need to be taken in baby steps if you plan to make a career out of fixing cars. One of those baby steps involves forming good preventive maintenance habits and making sure that you no longer commit any of the above cited mistakes.