Heading Out on Your Own — Day 20: Maintaining Your Car

by Brett & Kate McKay on August 20, 2012 · 43 comments

in Heading Out On Your Own

If you had access to a car while living at home, chances are your parents took care of its maintenance or offered reminders as to when to take it in for service. When you’re on your own, car maintenance becomes your responsibility. Yes, it can be expensive and time consuming, but the investment you make today will save you money down the road.

Don’t be like the 1/3 of college students who change their oil less than two times a year because they simply forget to do it.  Your car won’t magically take care of itself. Get in the habit of regular car maintenance and quit relying on your folks to remind you to get your tires rotated or your oil changed.

Below we take you through some of the rudimentary things you should be doing to ensure your car stays in tip top shape.

Every Other Fill-up, Do These Three Things

Instead of standing at the gas pump and reading the advertisements for a credit card while you wait for your tank to fill, use that time to give your car a quick check-up (and cleaning) by performing three simple tasks:

1. Clean windshield. A dirty, bug-splattered windshield is a safety hazard, as it obscures your view of the road. So give it a regular cleaning. Using the spongy part of the gas station squeegee, soak the whole windshield with the cleaning fluid. Then pull the squeegee tightly from the middle of the windshield to the sides, finishing off the remaining streaks by pulling it top to bottom. This is especially important after an extended drive on the highway when your windshield is littered with insect carcasses and using your car’s washing fluid and wipers to remove them only creates a big, smeary mess that obscures your line of sight even more.

If your headlights are dirty, give them a squeegeeing as well.

Your wipers have a role to play in keeping the windshield clean too, but we’ll talk about them later this week.

2. Check tire pressure. Maintaining proper tire pressure will keep you safe and even save you a little dough. Improperly inflated tires — and this may mean over-inflated or under-inflated — don’t handle or stop as well as tires with the correct pressure. They also increase your chance of a blow out. Plus, tires with the correct pressure have a longer life and increase your fuel efficiency.

You’ll often find your vehicle’s recommended tire pressure on a sticker inside the driver’s side door. Car manufacturers spend a lot of time coming up with this number, and it’s the one you should use.

Tire pressure is something you have to keep your eye on, as it constantly changes as the tires log miles and the temperature fluctuates. That’s why it’s so important to check it regularly and add air when needed. Some experts say you should do this at every gas fill-up, but just as with the oil check, every other fill-up should be enough to catch any deficiencies before they become big problems.

Checking your tire pressure takes less than two minutes. Here’s how to do it:

  • For an accurate reading, always check tire pressure when your tires are “cold,” that is before you’ve driven around on them. I only check my tires’ pressure at a gas station when I fill up at the one less than a mile from my house, first thing in the morning. If you’ve already been driving around for awhile, let the tires “rest” for at least four hours before checking the pressure.
  • Find out the tire pressure recommended for your car (it’s in your owner’s manual and on a panel inside the driver’s side door, as picture above). Always fill the tires to this recommended level, regardless of tire brand, and not to the max PSI found on the tire sidewall – that number indicates the maximum pressure the tire needs to carry its heaviest load, not the tire’s ideal PSI.
  • Check tire pressure with tire pressure gauge
  • Fill when needed

3. Check oil level and top off as needed. Motor oil is essential to your car’s performance. Its most important job is to lubricate all the moving parts in your engine so they don’t grind and tear themselves into dysfunction. It also transfers heat away from the combustion cycle and traps and holds all the nasty byproducts of combustion, sending it to the oil filter. If your engine doesn’t have enough oil, your car is at risk of going kaput.

To ensure your car always has enough oil, it’s important to get in the habit of regularly checking it. Your owner’s manual probably recommends that you do this at every gas fill-up, but every other is typically sufficient. Checking your car’s oil level is super easy. All you need is a clean paper towel, adequate light, and about three minutes. You should save this job for last because you need to wait about five minutes after you turn the engine off for the oil to drain back into the pan:

Before checking your oil level, make sure your car is on level ground so you get an accurate reading. Locate your engine’s dipstick. It usually has an image of an oil can or just says “OIL.”

Pull the dipstick out. No snickering.

Wipe it clean with a paper towel. The gas station usually has some available near the pumps.

Back goes the dip stick. Make sure it goes all the way in.

Now, we’re actually going to check the oil level. Pull the dipstick out again, but don’t turn it upside down to look at it. This makes the oil run upward and ruins your reading. The dipstick will have two marks at the bottom. They are usually either lines or holes in the stick. Mine has two holes. The oil level can be read by looking where the oily part ends and the dry part begins. If the oil line is between the two marks, you’re good to go. If it’s below the bottom mark, you need to add some more oil.  Just a quart mind you.  You should never add more than a quart at once without driving and taking a new reading of the oil level. Too much oil isn’t good for the engine.  There you go. You just read a dipstick.

Most cars are designed to consume a bit of oil between changes, and many manufacturers consider a consumption rate of one quart every 1,000 miles to be normal. Some cars lose more than that because of leaks or because the engine is burning oil along with the gasoline. If you’re needing to add a quart of oil every 500 miles or so, you should take your car in ASAP to get it checked for external and internal leaks.

Follow the Maintenance Schedule Suggested in Your Vehicle’s Owner’s Manual

Your vehicle also requires maintenance tasks that are performed less frequently, but are vital to allowing your automobile to live a long and fruitful life. These tasks include oil changes, tire rotations, replacing transmission fluid, and the like.

Don’t follow the dealer’s or mechanics’ recommended maintenance schedule. They often suggest that you come in more frequently and perform maintenance that you really don’t need. For example, most quick lube and dealership service shops recommend you bring your car in every 3,000 miles for an oil change, despite the fact that most modern engines are designed to run for 5,000 miles before needing one. Another example is coolant replacement. A lot of mechanics recommend having it replaced every 30,000 miles, but many vehicles don’t need this service until they reach four times that. And after the 120k mark, manufacturers often recommend the coolant be replaced only every 60,000 miles.

Instead of relying on Larry at the KwikLube to tell you when you should service your car, pop open your glove compartment (or “jockey box” for you gents living in the Mountain West region), and pull out your owner’s manual.  There should be a section where it lists the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule, which tells you how often to get your oil changed, rotate the tires, and replace fluids and parts. If you can’t find the owner’s manual, a quick Google search will bring it up. By following your vehicle’s ideal maintenance schedule, you can prevent costly inspections, repairs, and replacements, and keep your car humming for many years.

DIY Car Maintenance

As newer vehicles have become increasingly complex with onboard computers and high-tech gadgetry, maintenance jobs now often require a mechanic with the proper training and tools to correctly complete the task.

But there are still a few maintenance jobs that most men can do themselves on most models, and below I list three of the most accessible. It’s true that taking care of these tasks doesn’t save you very much in either time or money, but it is satisfying nonetheless and I recommend trying each job at least once, as they’ll give you a reason to look under your hood as well as a small bit of insight into how your trusted chariot works.

Change oil every 5,000 miles. We’ve written a guide on how to change your car’s motor oil yourself. But for those living in an apartment or dorm, this might not be an option. Whether you do it yourself or take it to a mechanic, getting your oil changed regularly is one of the most important ways of keeping your car running smoothly.

Change air filter every 12,000 miles. This is quite possibly one of the easiest car maintenance jobs you can do yourself. We wrote how to do it here. Regularly changing your car’s air filter will increase fuel efficiency, prolong your engine’s life, and reduce emissions.

While changing your car’s oil comes with the hassle of finding a way to dispose of the used oil properly, no such inconvenience exists for the air filter, and doing it yourself will easily save you half the cost of having a service shop take care of it.

Rotate tires every 5,000 to 10,000 miles. Front and rear tires wear differently. Regularly rotating your tires equalizes their natural wear patterns, ensuring a smoother and safer ride. It also extends the life of your tires, which will save you money on costly replacements. Here’s how to rotate your car tires.

Keep Your Car Clean

Besides performing regular maintenance, another important part of taking care of your car is keeping it clean.

Wash your car regularlyEvery day our cars are subjected to sun, salt, grease and grime, acid rain, smog, tree sap, dead bugs, and worst of all, the acidic compound of bird poop bombs. These things eat away at paint, and once that’s gone, they will eat at the metal in your car. While failing to wash your car won’t result in immediate damage, over time the elements will corrode your vehicle, along with its potential re-sell value.

How often should you wash your car? It depends. Location and climate are the two biggest factors in determining frequency. If you live in an area with a lot of pollution and sea salt in the air, you’ll need to wash it two or three times a month. If you live inland and in an area with little pollution, a once a month car wash will suffice. During the winter, you may need to wash your car more frequently than you do during the summer due to the snow, salt, and mud that will accumulate as you drive along icy roadways.

Don’t forget to detail your car after you wash it!

Don’t use the inside of your car as a garbage can.  The inside of your car is not a garbage can, so quit treating it like one. Get in the habit of regularly cleaning out your car so it doesn’t constantly look like a dump. Keeping your car’s interior clean and tidy can reduce stress in your life and make the driving experience more enjoyable. Also, you never know when you’ll have unexpected passengers . By keeping your car clean, you’ll never have to sheepishly say, “Sorry about the mess,” as you wipe away shards of yesterday’s QuickTrip breakfast burrito from the passenger seat.

Any other car maintenance tips for a young man headed out on his own? Share them with us in the comments!

{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Aaron August 20, 2012 at 11:27 pm

You should not check tire pressure after more than several minutes driving. The pressure changes after use and you will not get a good reading. Best to check cold tire pressure.

2 Levi August 20, 2012 at 11:31 pm

Wow, just got on from washing my car!

3 Adam August 20, 2012 at 11:39 pm

Keep good records! I have a folder with receipts and notes (date, mileage, parts and fluids checked and changed, etc.) related to any maintenance performed on the vehicle.

4 Richard August 20, 2012 at 11:40 pm

Super simple tip I recently started employing: take a plastic grocery bag, and close the handles of it in between the doors of your glove box to keep it in place. Instead of littering your car, you now have a conveniently placed trash bag.

5 Strapping Lad August 21, 2012 at 12:46 am

“Adam August 20, 2012 at 11:39 pm
Keep good records! I have a folder with receipts and notes (date, mileage, parts and fluids checked and changed, etc.) related to any maintenance performed on the vehicle.”

For the love of God! Yes! Nothing is more irritating than a car without maintenance records.

Along with all my receipts, I keep a small memo pad with the aforementioned data. The owner of a car I bought a while back even kept his records organized on Excel. If you posses the nerdly prowess of Excel power, this could work for you too.

6 Stargate525 August 21, 2012 at 1:02 am

Actually, the owner’s manual of your car has more details on oil changes. Some run as high as 15k.

7 Jon August 21, 2012 at 1:19 am

To the guys that recommend the record keeping – Does anyone have a list of information that would be useful to include in the record book? Obviously the date, mileage and service completed. I’ve also included a list on the first page in my book of the commonly used items (type of oil, type of sparkplugs, torque specs) that I run across when doing some maintenance.

Some times I look at what I’m doing and things it’s borderline neurotic for the amount of detail, then other times I think it’s not detailed enough (especially when thinking about selling the vehicle).

So, again, what do you all typically include in your records?

8 Georl August 21, 2012 at 1:51 am

Not all cars have an OIL dipstick. Mine uses a “710″ dipstick to check oil levels.

9 commenter August 21, 2012 at 5:18 am

Find an online forum for your car. They are filled with enthusiasts who can offer advice on things. I use yourcobalt.com and cobaltss.com for my Chevy Cobalt.

10 Robert August 21, 2012 at 6:35 am

What about motorbikes?

11 Kevin August 21, 2012 at 6:40 am

I’m going to reiterate what Aaron said because its important. Check tire pressure before you start driving. Friction from driving will increase the air temperature inside the tire and give you a false reading.

12 Phil L. August 21, 2012 at 7:28 am

A great post! I second the keeping of maintenance records. It really helps with resale value when people can see that you’ve cared for your vehicle.

One good tip that was missing is checking your exterior lights (tail lights, blinkers, headlights, etc). Not only is it unsafe to have lights burnt out, but in most cases it can get you a ticket! Just add it in to your checks at the gas station.

13 Greg August 21, 2012 at 8:17 am

Make sure and check the torque of the lug nuts on your car after you rotate the tires. Tighten as needed. They have a tendancy to become looser is not tightened correctly.

14 Jared August 21, 2012 at 8:22 am

Take care of your car and it will take care of you! I’m still driving my first vehical, a ’92 S-10 I bought used back in 2007. It still starts up good and never leaves me sit. I change the oil and air filter regularly and replace parts as they go, which is to be expected with old vehicals. The most important thing I think is to drive it gently and not like you stole it. I meet guys at work with 5 or 7 cars since their first one in 5 or less years, they make fun of my ol’ Truck but I only paid $600 for it and they are still paying on cars they totaled.

15 Srinivas Kari August 21, 2012 at 9:49 am

Could you do a motorcycle maintenance routine as well. Really loved this one.

16 Joseph August 21, 2012 at 9:49 am

I’d also like to add that all men can, and should, learn to change their own brake pads. It’s a pretty simple process and plus, the ladies in your life will appreciate your handiness when you save them hundreds of dollars by avoiding the brake shop.

17 Christopher Nitkin August 21, 2012 at 11:11 am

Brett, thanks so much for a wonderful website and a great series! I am curious about the frequency of oil changes in a low-mileage situation. I drive ~9000 miles a year but own a new car and want to make sure it stays in good condition. My dealership says every 5000 miles or every 6 months, whichever comes sooner, while the “severe maintenance” schedule says every 7500 miles. What’s a man to do? Thanks!

18 Bryan August 21, 2012 at 12:12 pm

As was mentioned earlier, tire pressure should only ever be checked on cold tires – that is, tires that have been at rest for at least 4 hours. Unless your tire is leaking (ok, so it loses a minute amount of oxygen as the molecule is slightly smaller than the rubber compounds of the tire itself), it contains the same volume of air today as it did 3 weeks ago. Pressure is tied to temperature and volume. As you drive, your wheels generate friction (which we like to call traction in relation to tires, but it’s all the same thing) which generates heat. This increases the pressure in the tire. Tire pressure ratings already take this into account. If you read your vehicle owner’s manual, it will tell you that the tire pressure is to be taken cold.

Also, get a digital pressure gauge. The analog gauges aren’t necessarily accurate. And if you’re going to get a digital gauge, you might as well buy your own tire inflator – several home improvement stores and virtually any auto parts store will carry them. And at $1 per vehicle per month to use a gas station’s air hoses, it will pay for itself in less than 2 years.

If you have a recent GM vehicle (after they stopped shipping a spare tire standard with most cars), you may already have this in your emergency flat tire kit. It also includes a can of fix-a-flat. Read your owner’s manual for directions on how to use it.

19 Mike August 21, 2012 at 1:32 pm

Turn the music down every once in a while and just listen to your car. Listen for unusual knocking, straining, rubbing and other sounds. You can tell how healthy a car is just by sound.

20 Brett McKay August 21, 2012 at 1:46 pm

Good addition about checking your tires when they’re “cold.” I meant to put that in there, and then forgot, so I appreciate the reminder, and have edited the post to include this tip.

What number does the owner’s manual give? That’s the one I would use.

21 Josh August 21, 2012 at 1:53 pm

Be wary with the recommendation to not change the coolant as often. A mechanic friend of mine stated that some cars (Fords are especially bad at this) use a certain combination of metals in the coolant system that accelerate the rusting process. This caused an inconvenient blow-up of the cooling system in my car, despite regular maintenance.

22 Bryan August 21, 2012 at 2:10 pm

That depends. Is this a new car purchased from the dealership that includes free maintenance or some extended non-factory warranty? If so, that is a legal agreement between you and the dealer, so check that paperwork to make sure you comply with those requirements.

If it is not for extending any sort of service/maintenance agreement and only what the dealer wants you to do, then read the manual and follow the manufacturer recommendations.

If the dealer is doing the service for your benefit at their cost, bring it in on their schedule. If the dealer is doing it for their benefit at your cost, keep a healthy bit of skepticism about yourself.

23 Jacob August 21, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Find a local, independently owned auto parts store, and establish a good reputation with them if you intend to do your own maintenance .I recently went through three starters with them, because my first one was grinding the flywheel, and I brought this up to them a couple months later (when the grinding finally started) and he replaced mine without a receipt (I left it in my wallet and the ink faded, my bad) and the subsequent two bad starters I got. Having a good auto store is invaluable.

Also, when tightening lug nuts, make sure to tighten them in a star pattern for 5-lug patterns and opposite triangle patterns for 6-lug patterns, checking them after you tighten them all. this provides more balanced torque on all the nuts, and keeps them from loosening.

24 Phil August 21, 2012 at 4:34 pm

If there’s a recent-vintage gasoline-fueled car out there whose manufacturer thinks it’s reasonable to burn a quart every thousand miles let me know so I can avoid it.

Motorcycles are similar to cars, but you need to be a little stricter about checking things regularly. A low tire on a car is an inconvenience, but a few pounds difference on a motorcycle tire means you may not make that next curve; a blown front tire means you’ve got a pretty good chance of a nasty get-off.

Check your oil regularly – most bikes have a sight-glass built into the engine casing that makes this pretty easy, so every fuel stop isn’t a bad idea.
Check your tires regularly – I eyeball mine every time I get on and will pull out the pressure gauge every few weeks (or if the handling feels “off”).
While you’re down checking your tires, scope out your brake pads and fork seals in front, brake pads and chain in back (how’s the tension? is it dirty and dry?).
On chain-driven bikes, lube the chain every fill-up or so (more often if you’re riding in a lot of rain or dirt that’ll strip the lube off faster).

How are your tires looking? Even wear is good. Flat spots, “scallops”, etc. are all a sign of bad tire pressure. Keep an eye on your tread depth – most motorcycle tires are done after 15-20K miles. If you’re a very occasional rider and wouldn’t put 15K miles on a bike in 15 years, then keep an eye for cracking sidewalls on older tires.

Motorcycles overheat a lot easier than cars (especially if you’re stuck in traffic. If you’ve got a liquid-cooled bike then check the coolant reservoir every month or so. Air-cooled bikes should make sure they can hear any fans coming on when the engine temperature starts getting hot. A couple minutes idling in the driveway on a warm day should get the temperature up there.

Check your brake fluid level once a month – again, you’ve either got a nice, clear reservoir or a sight-glass built into it. Don’t forget the rear reservoir!
Ditto for the clutch reservoir if you’ve got a hydraulic clutch.

Make sure your brakes work – hold the brake and rock the back back and forth under you.

Check your throttle play – twist it open and then let go. It should snap back closed by itself. You do NOT want a sticky throttle.

Check your bulbs every week or so – single-cylinder bikes and Harley-style V-twins give hot filaments a pretty good shaking and bulbs don’t like that much. All your lights except the brake light are pretty easy to check; the brake light might take some stretching to hit the rear brake pedal and watch the tail light at the same time. I try to consciously check mine by watching my lights’ reflection on shiny cars in front of me/behind me at a stoplight once in a while.

25 Brian August 21, 2012 at 5:15 pm

Now, if only modern cars weren’t such a pain to work on…

Seriously, I can change the air filter on my old truck in 5 minutes or less, but my car take 20.

26 Gary August 21, 2012 at 9:33 pm

warm tires usually add about 3 psi for cars.

Cold tires give the most accurate reading, but don’t skip this task because you have already driven a few miles. I know the digital pressure gauges reads tenths of a psi but for normal use it’s not worth worrying over a few psi. You can even measure them both cold and warm and see what variation you usually get with warm tires. I usually measure the pressure at home before I drive ’cause I use a bicycle pump to inflate the tires (7 pumps gives me 1 psi, so it’s not that much work).

27 Jack August 22, 2012 at 8:45 am

I like the last comment about not using your car like a garbage can. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to carpool with a co-worker and they say “Oh sorry, I haven’t had a chance to clean out my car” as I climb in the back and push aside a mountain of literal garbage. I definitely think less of them and wonder what their work quality is like if they are the kind of person to allow 3 weeks of fast food bags to pile up, disgusting!

28 Moeregaard August 22, 2012 at 4:46 pm

I must be one of the lucky few. My dad encouraged us to become interested in restoring cars when we were in high school. Because of this, by the time I graduated from college, I’d restored a couple of British sports cars and made a few bucks on the side while in college, maintaining an old MG owned by an attorney friend of my dad. This connection came in handy when I found myself “between postions,” i.e., unemployed right out of school. One of my favorite rants is the lack of support for high-school industrial-arts courses today. Basic home and vehicle maintenance should be taught in the schools. Not everyone is college bound, and learning the basics of a trade is never a bad thing. I once told a friend that when I become King, everyone will take basic courses in wood and metal fabrication, electricity and plumbing, vehicle maintenance and home economics. In my kingdom, boys and girls both will become proficient with their hands and have a basic understanding of how things they use every day work, and how to repair them when they don’t.

29 Benson August 23, 2012 at 11:07 pm

Use a dash cover to protect your dash from the harsh sunlight. It also looks better. When parked, use a windshield sunscreen to reflect the sunlight back outside, especially on those hot summer days. Your hands and your bottom will thank you when you go to your car after it is parked all day long in the hot sun. The plastics and seats in the car will last a lot longer, too. If you have leather seats, protect them with leather cleaner. Not only does the high-quality leather cleaners clean, they also have additives that protect the leather.

Wax your car every six months if where you live seldom rains. The wax will protect your car’s clear coat from bird bombs, road grime, and other pollutants a lot longer and make it look shinier, too. The was is only good for about 4-6 washings, so wax more if it rains frequently where you live. Polish every other wax application to remove contaminants that will not wash away with normal washing or inconsistencies in the paint caused by sand or other harsh particles that scratch up the paint.

Check your lights (headlights, turn signals, fog lights, rear lights, etc) at least once a month.

30 Marc August 29, 2012 at 12:52 pm

I keep all the maintenance receipts, invoices, etc. on my iPhone. Might seem extreme but it came in handy just this morning when the local tire place couldn’t pull up the right records. I also recommend an app like Gas Cubby (free version available) that allows you to enter and store information about fill-ups and maintenance.

31 José M September 5, 2012 at 3:46 pm

Why should one change the oil every 5 000 miles?
My car (VW Golf) and nowadays any european cars recommend an oil change every 30 000 km (20 000 miles) even for Diesel engines, which are more oil cosuming and polluting. That’s four times less frequent than what you suggest.
Technical standart 15 years ago was to change oil every 15 000 km (10 000 miles), so it is surprising that you recommend every 5 000 miles generically.
That is an unnecessary waste.

32 Leland September 9, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Does anyone have advice on how often do you need to change your battery?

33 Brian September 12, 2012 at 8:46 pm


When it quits working, basically. Every battery will run down and wear out eventually, but there’s no real time frame for it. I used to sell auto parts when I was in college, and I’ve seen a battery become nonchargeable after 1 year, while another of the same brand and type was still running after 10 years.

34 Steve November 19, 2012 at 4:07 am

tune ups are getting so expensive nowadays just spent over 350 on my focus

35 simone March 28, 2013 at 1:24 pm

What about brand new cars. How often should we check all the liquids: coolant, trasmisssion fluids etc?

36 Michelle Schultz April 9, 2013 at 1:38 pm

I agree with DIY car maintenance, based on my experience. You can really save a dollar even learning the basics of maintaining your car.

37 Tyler A. Sellers April 11, 2013 at 10:15 pm

These are great tips. But it’s not exactly a good idea to check and fill up your oil, because you can still have oil circulating through the engine. This will make your oil level seem low, and then you could end up with too much oil.

38 Endro May 6, 2013 at 1:07 am

good advice :)

39 Marlene May 9, 2013 at 5:07 pm

Any advice on how to keep the top of your jockey box clean? How would I make a cover for it? Anyone made one before?

40 Led June 18, 2013 at 12:51 am

I’m guilty of leaving trash inside the car, you’re right it’s a shame for unexpected passengers. Thanks for sharing these information. I’ve learned a lot.

41 Brian July 21, 2013 at 5:24 pm

To keep trash down in your car without keeping a bag in there, just use one of the “souvenir cups” that you can get from super sizing something. Wash it and keep it in your cup holder and just stuff all trash in there.

Looks tidy and keeps car clean!

42 Will September 15, 2013 at 10:36 pm

I have one small issue with this articles statement on tire pressure. If you drive a vehicle that does not have factory-spec tires (or an equivalent tire), such as a pickup truck with tires meant for towing, an SUV built for spending as much time off the road as on it, or a high performance car then the necessary air pressure often changes from what is printed inside the door. I drive an offroad SUV with tires that are both larger and more heavy duty then what comes on my car from the factory. Because of this, the 32psi printed on the door is actually far to low and borders on unsafe. In fact, I have my tires aired up to 43psi in the front and 42psi in the rear.

If you drive a modified car, especially with tires that are different from the factory originals it is advisable to use the chalk method (http://www.ehow.com/how_6948382_chalk-tires.html) to determine the correct tire pressure.

43 Marc October 10, 2013 at 12:43 pm

Great beginner’s guide, there are so many things in this guide I newer before thought about checking…

And BTW, this is a really cool site :-)

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