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Vehicle Maintenance

This DIY Basic will provide tips on vehicle maintenance.

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Tire Pressure

Step 1: Watch an Overview Video

Step 2: Let the Engine Cool Down

Before you begin, park the car on level ground, put the gearshift in Park, turn off the ignition, and set the hand brake and let the engine cool down.

Step 3: Check the Tires

If you don’t have a tire tread gauge, insert a penny between the treads with Abraham Lincoln’s head downwards; if you can see all of his face, the tread is too thin.

Step 4: Replace the Air Filter

Painter's tape over the engine opening will keep out dust while you clean the mounting.

When you're finished, gently rock the unit to make sure it’s seated properly.

Step 5: Replace the Wiper Blades

Wiper blades should be replaced every six months or sooner, if streaking occurs. Before buying new wiper blades, measure the old blades to the nearest inch.

You can replace the blade assembly or just the blades.

Step 6: Pack an Emergency Kit

A roadside emergency kit could include the following: roadside flares, large flashlight with extra batteries, 1 quart of oil, fuses, tire inflator, jumper cables, solar blanket, duct tape, paper towels, small first aid kit, and a multipurpose tool with pliers, wire cutters, scissors, saw, bottle opener, screwdriver, file, pocket knife, washer fluid, and awl.

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