A lot of car owners don't pay close attention to their vehicle's engine; they ignore signs of wear and tear and continuously put off essential maintenance work. This approach can reduce their engine's lifespan dramatically. If you'd like to avoid the expense and hassle of having to replace this part of your car, here are a couple of things you can do to prevent it from failing prematurely.
Identify and quickly address signs of engine trouble
When an engine problem arises, whether it's the result of overheating, poor maintenance or just general wear and tear, it's absolutely crucial to identify the source of the trouble and deal with it immediately. If caught early on, this type of car problem can usually be rectified quite easily; however, if ignored, it will inevitably worsen, potentially to the point where the entire engine has to be replaced.
Coloured exhaust smoke is one sign of engine trouble which you should always address as soon as possible. If you notice that the exhaust is producing white smoke, this may mean that there is a leak which is allowing coolant to seep into the engine's combustion chamber. In most instances, this leak is the result of a blown head gasket.
Driving around with a damaged head gasket will almost invariably lead to total engine failure. However, if detected at an early stage, this issue can be fixed, simply by replacing the component. If you're relatively car-savvy, you can order the part online and do the repair work yourself. Make sure to purchase the correct part for your particular make and model of car; even if two head gaskets look alike, they may not both be suitable for your vehicle. Ford parts for example, won't necessarily fit into a Fiat car, even if the components appear to be very similar at first glance.
Change the oil regularly
Many people underestimate the importance of changing their car's engine oil. This substance serves a number of very important purposes. Firstly, it acts as a coolant; the oil lubricates the valves and pistons (engine components which move at very high speeds when the car is switched on). Without proper lubrication, the motion of these parts would result in friction, which in turn would create large amounts of heat that could potentially destroy the entire engine. Secondly, oil greatly reduces the rate at which the engine's components corrode and thus cuts down on the need for costly repairs and replacements. Lastly, the oil film serves as a protective seal on the cylinder's walls.
Engine oil can only perform all the above-mentioned functions if it is clean and relatively fresh; over time, the chemical makeup of this liquid degrades and the oil becomes contaminated by dirt particles, all of which impact its ability to lubricate and cool the components. As such, it is essential to change your car's engine oil on a regular basis.
It's important to take your own driving habits and environment into consideration when deciding how often to replace the engine oil. If for example, you often drive around with weighty items (such as luggage), in the back of your car, if you tend to travel on bumpy rural roads or if you live in a very hot climate, you may need to increase the frequency of your oil changes, as all of these things can place extra pressure on your engine and thus increase its oil consumption rate.