Nick's Auto Blog

Hello, my name is Nick. This is my new auto blog. Have you ever wondered about how you can improve the look and functioning of your auto? If so you are in the right place. I live in a large house in the suburbs of Melbourne, Australia and my house has as many garage parking spots as it does rooms. And believe me, it has a lot of rooms. I like to collect classic cars and then work on them to restore them to their former glory. In doing this, I have learnt lots of cool tricks. I would like to share some of these tricks with you here.

Car maintenance tips for single mums


Independence and mobility are key to running a successful household as a single parent, and having a car that is reliable car is crucial to living an independent lifestyle. It's easy as a single mum to neglect regular car maintenance if your budget or car knowledge is limited, but when your car breaks down unexpectedly it's a major inconvenience and financial burden. Let's look at some helpful tips for single mums to keep their car well-maintained.

Check your fluids

Leaving your car running low on fluids can lead to a variety of more complex and expensive issues. Read your owner's manual and become familiar with how to check the oil, coolant, and transmission fluid levels in your car. It's important to take note of where the fluid receptacles are located under the bonnet, as well as the optimum levels and whether the engine should be running or cold when you check the levels.

If you have older children, get them involved in the process. It's important for them to learn how to be self-sufficient and maintain their own cars in the future. Don't be too cheap when purchasing fluids; a good quality oil can help keep engine parts clean and lubricated. If you notice your oil is dark or dirty, contact your local mechanic for a routine oil change.

Keep your tyres inflated

Check your tyre pressure regularly, and keep them inflated to the recommended pressure listed either in your glove box or door frame panel. Not only will you prolong the lifespan of your tyres, you'll save fuel money and ensure a smoother ride—particularly important when you have a small child on board. If you are inexperienced with checking or inflating tyres, ask a local car service station attendant to give you a demonstration.

Check for battery corrosion

Batteries can be expensive to replace, but having a good quality battery reduces the likelihood of having a flat battery before school or work. Check your battery regularly for corrosion around the terminals.

If your battery has a build-up of corrosion, brush it away with a stiff-bristled brush and a little bicarbonate of soda. A battery that regularly has a large build-up of corrosion or is often flat should be replaced with a new battery of the right size and quality for your car.

Watch your lights

If you don't do a lot of night driving, you might not notice that a blown headlamp until you really need it. Not only is it unsafe driving without headlights, you may incur a hefty fine if caught. Check your headlights, tail lights and indicators are functioning by pulling up to a glass-fronted shop after hours and turning your high beams and indicators on to check the reflection. Do the same with the tail lights by reversing up to the shop window.

Alternatively, if you have older children, you can have them stand outside the vehicle and give you feedback, or charge them with the responsibility of turning the lights on one by one as you check they are functioning correctly.

Record maintenance and service details

Keeping track of all your car service and maintenance records will allow you to see when your car is due to be serviced, and if there are any recurring problems you have receipts on hand for verification purposes. Record the date your next service is due on your family calendar, and set a reminder on your phone a few months before so that you can start putting a little money away every fortnight to pay for a full service.

Catch problems early

Use your best judgment and get to know your car—if you hear, see or smell anything out of the ordinary, contact a car maintenance specialist immediately. Diagnosing a problem before it becomes severe can save you time, money and frustration, while keeping your family safe in a reliable vehicle.


7 May 2015