How to Protect Your Car and Stay Safe on the Road

Driving a car is sometimes exciting – in a way you don’t want it to be. Maybe you suddenly notice a small fire in your engine. Or perhaps you have a tire blow out.

In other words, ignoring certain problems isn’t just a bad idea for your car – it can be dangerous.

In the interest of keeping your vehicle running well and making sure you and your passengers are safe, we thought we’d point out a few things you don’t want to ignore when it comes to your car.

How to avoid an engine fire. Regular car checkups are imperative to keep your car running well, but do you ever hear a loud sound from your exhaust system? Does your engine temperature occasionally shoot up from normal to very hot? Does your oil leak? You should bring in your car into a Milex Complete Auto Care to be checked out.

Another thing to be aware of – that fires don’t always start in the engine. Do you smoke? Occasionally you’ll read or hear about car fires that started due to a careless cigarette. Be careful.

How to avoid losing control of your car. Well, there are so many ways that you could lose control of your car, but we’ll point out a few things that you do not want to put off getting fixed.

  • Your timing belt. If it snaps, that can ruin your engine. If it snaps when you’re driving, your car could pretty much come to a stop, immediately, no matter what road you’re on – a lonely countryside road or a busy freeway. So if you’re ever advised to replace your timing belt, don’t hesitate to do it.
  • A threadbare tire. If you’re told and shown that your tires are thin and worn, you’ll want to get them replaced as soon as possible. A blowout on a busy road can be a very serious thing. Everyone knows tires are expensive and they aren’t fun to replace. But they are so important to a car’s safety. According to the most recent numbers available from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 738 fatalities due to tire-related issues in 2017.
  • Bad brakes. We all know this is important, and so it would be silly to try to convince you that it’s a good idea to have good brakes. You don’t need convincing. Just remember that as a rule, brakes don’t suddenly give out. You generally always have a lot of advance warning. When you start hearing a high-pitched squealing sound, your brake pads are getting thin, and they need replacing. If you hear more of a screech, and grinding of metal, then you’re probably further down the road and you may need not just pads but the brake rotors, and by then your car is practically begging you to get your brakes repaired. Basically, the more you put off replacing brakes, the more expensive – and dangerous – things get. The NHTSA suggests that 22 percent of accidents may be due to defective brakes – that isn’t always due to consumers not fixing brakes. Sometimes it’s a manufacturer defect. But the point is – if your brakes are literally screeching at you to get them fixed, listen to your brakes.

How to avoid a collision. Yes, defensive driving is the main thing. Also definitely don’t text and drive. But you also want to think about things like worn windshield wipers. Yeah, silly as that might sound, the Federal Highway Administration says that of the 5.8 million crashes every year, 21 percent are weather related. Most of those (46 percent) occur during the rain (70 percent if you just go with wet pavement). Granted, there are a lot of factors that can lead to a wreck on a wet, rainy day that go beyond windshield wipers. Worn and thin tires, for instance. And were you or the other driver fully alert? A good night’s sleep can help you avoid colliding with another car. But you’re definitely putting yourself at a disadvantage if your windshield wipers aren’t doing a very good job of keeping your window clean and free from water.  Anyone at Milex would be happy to put new windshield wipers on your car.

There are many things we can do to help enhance the safety of our cars and protect ourselves and others.  Take care of your car, and it’ll take care of you.

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