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Proactive vehicle maintenance can help to avoid winter breakdowns

 (ARA) – As temperatures continue to drop, motorists should ensure their vehicles are winter-ready by performing simple maintenance checks.

Checking and replacing components such as belts and hoses, spark plugs and antifreeze at the correct time and mileage intervals for your vehicle could mean the difference between a $5 part or replacing a $3,000 engine.

Cooling system failures are the No. 1 cause of engine-related roadside breakdowns. “Nobody likes being stranded on the highway, yet so many motorists wait until their cars break down to perform needed maintenance,” said AutoZone spokesperson Sarah “Bogi” Lateiner, ASE certified Master Mechanic and owner of 180 Automotive. “The engine cooling system is one of the most important yet most neglected systems in a vehicle. Replacing antifreeze at regular intervals keeps the vehicle from overheating and provides freeze protection during colder months.”

Bad belts and hoses are the second most common cause of roadside breakdowns

“It’s easy to neglect your car’s engine, especially when there’s no visible sign of trouble,” Lateiner said. “Hoses for example, usually wear from the inside out and won’t always show signs of wear. That makes it even more important for motorists to proactively check and replace parts such as belts and hoses and spark plugs at regular intervals. These parts are readily available at automotive retailers such as AutoZone.”

Replace spark plugs to get better performance and fuel economy

“Driving around with a worn spark plug is equivalent to throwing gas money out your exhaust pipe, Lateiner said. “As spark plugs burn out, they do not burn fuel as cleanly, so it’s important to replace them as your vehicle manual specifies.”

Courtesy of ARAcontent

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