Common Car Problems and Solutions

When you own a car, it is imperative that you have the ability to fix the common car problems on your own. This is a very important skill that every car owner should learn, especially if they will do a lot of travelling and more if they will travel a lot to places where no one could be waiting for a car maintenance and repair customer.

Before we begin, it is imperative for any car owners or car owners that wanted to fix things by themselves to have the proper tools and safety gears. And above all else, don’t work on a car right after you turned it off or while it’s running, unless you want to get burned. Onwards to the tools:

The Essential Tools

  • Basic Garage Toolkit – this composes a car jack, support stands, complete set of open-end and socket wrenches, a complete set of Philips, flathead screwdrivers, drain pan and a complete set of pliers.
  • Multimeter – another important tool for testing electric current throughout the car. This will allow you to find any fault in electrical wiring, if there’s any.
  • OBD Code Reader – these can be expensive at first sight, but once you plug this to your car, you can easily learn any problems that you might have. There are even OBD readers that can be connected to a smartphone.

Those are some of the most basic tools essential for you to begin fixing a lot of common car problems with ease. Let’s head on to some of the common problems and how to fix them.

Flat Tire

If your car is tilting and there is a thumping noise, you have a flat tire. This requires you to have a spare tire in your trunk, so make sure you have a spare tire all the time. Plus, you need to have a small car jack with a built-in lever and lug nut ratchet. Always keep those things in your trunk. All you have to do is to put the jack on a stable frame, make sure there are no plastic pieces, then pump up the car and remove the lug nuts. After that, put the new tire on. Make sure that you tighten the nuts and to slowly bring down the jack.

Head and/or Tail Lights Dead

This one is easy. Go to a car shop, ask about the required bulb for the specific make or model you have and you can easily replace your dead lights. Make sure that the car is turned off, then unplug the old bulb, and replace it with the new one.

Dead Battery

If your car won’t start, your battery is most likely dead. If you don’t have a tester, you can go to car repair shops to make sure that your battery isn’t the real problem, because if your car won’t start, it’s either the batter or the starter or alternator. Removing the battery involves removing the negative terminal first before the positive and if there’s a ground wire, you will also need to take them off.

Anticipating Problems in Automobiles

If you own a car, one of the most valuable skill that you can obtain is the ability to troubleshoot and repair your car in times of need. Learning basic auto repair and troubleshooting can be a real life saver and you can save money too. With that in mind, let’s see some of the basic auto repair and troubleshooting tips that you can learn. Let’s begin.

Things to Smell For

These problems can be easily anticipated by using our nose. If you can smell the following, then it might be a great idea to have your auto in a mechanic. Here are some of the smells that you need to watch out for:

  • Burned toast smell, particularly a light, sharp odor often means that there is an electrical shortage and burning insulation. To keep you safe, it’s best not to drive the vehicle until its diagnosed.
  • Rotten eggs – this usually indicates that somebody just farted. But if you’re alone or if you’re sure that no one farted and the smell is like a continuous burning-Sulphur, it’s usually a sign of a problem in the catalytic converter or other emission control devices. Have your car checked immediately.
  • Thick acrid odor is a sign of a leak.
  • If you smell gasoline vapors after a failure to start means that you have a flooded engine. You just have to wait for a few minutes to restart. However, if the odor persists, there may be a leak in the fuel system. The latter is dangerous and you need to have your car repaired immediately.

Things to Hear

Aside from odor, you can also anticipate problems by hearing them. The following are some of the noise that you need to watch out for:

  • Click – if you hear a slight sharp noise, this is possible related to engine speed or vehicle speed. You might have a loose wheel cover, a loose or bent fan blade or a stuck valve lifter or low engine oil.
  • Screech – when you hear a high pitched, piercing metallic sound that usually occurs while the vehicle is in motion, it might because by break wear indicators which indicates the need for maintenance.
  • Ping – when you hear a high pitched metallic tapping sound, related to engine speed, then you might be using gas with a lower octane rating that what is recommended. Make sure you use the correct octane rating, to be sure, check your owner’s manual. If this problem continues to persist, then the engine ignition timing could be the blame.
  • Clunk – when you hear a random thumping sound, it can be an indication of a loose shock absorber or a loose exhaust pipe. It could also be a loose muffler or other suspension component.