Common Car Care Myths and Misconceptions (Part One)


VW Golf RepairWhat do you know about caring for your car? I mean, REALLY know, for certain?

When did you learn this information? A decade ago? More? Perhaps your base knowledge comes from your dad, he’s held his license for over thirty years…

The thing is, a lot has changed since dad passed his driving test. That includes cars.

This post is the first in a series covering common fallacies that persist amongst motorists that we at Fallbrook Motors are trying to correct.

Shake these outdated (and in some cases, just plain wrong) ideas from your mind and you could find yourself saving money.

Your engine oil needs changing every 3000 miles

This is possibly the most widespread myth that motorists still believe. The truth is, most cars are built to run for anywhere between 10,000 and 20,000 miles before the engine oil needs replacing and the precise figure is readily supplied in manufacturers’ maintenance manuals. If you do not have a maintenance manual for your car, the information will be easy to find using a search engine like Google or Bing.

You can use washing up liquid as an alternative to screenwash

Provided you don’t want that protective (not to mention shiny) coating of wax on your paintwork anymore, then feel free to mix up some Fairy Liquid. Washing up liquid is designed to stop grease and fats binding to surfaces and, chemically speaking, washing up liquid considers that gleaming layer of Turtle Wax you so painstakingly massaged into the bodywork at the weekend the same. Proper screenwash, or washer-fluid if you prefer, is friendly to cars as it is formulated to ignore wax coatings.

You should leave your engine ticking over for a while to warm up

The truth is, modern car engines warm up a lot faster if they are driven. The quicker the engine warms up, the quicker it will run efficiently and economically. Just make sure you don’t over-rev it during the first couple of miles of your trip and setting off straight away, even on a cold day, shouldn’t be a problem.

Your tyres should be inflated to the number carved on the sidewall

The PSI figure on the tyre wall is the maximum pressure the tyre can hold, not the best figure to fill it to. The recommended PSI figures (depending on the car’s load) will be found on a sticker on the inside of the fuel-filler door, inside the car’s glove box or on one of the door-jambs (where the child-lock is).

More myths and fallacies to come. Like our page on Facebook or follow Fallsbrook Motors on Twitter to be notified when Part Two goes live.

Are there any car care myths that you want debunked? Leave a reply in the comments and we might include it in the sequel to this post. Happy motoring…!

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