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Common Car Maintenance Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Last updated 3 years ago

New vehicles today are more complex and technologically advanced than ever. Surprisingly, that means that basic maintenance is all the easier for the average driver. The trickier tasks can be left to your local dealership’s technicians, but there are some things you can do yourself if you’re so inclined—just make sure you don’t do them terribly wrong.

Tire Inflation
Keeping your tires properly inflated is crucial to both safety and fuel economy. Overfilled tires stress the capacity limits of the rubber and offer far too little traction. Underfilled tires greatly reduce fuel economy and wear down quickly. Many people think that the PSI listed on the tire is the recommended pressure, but the value you should use is actually provided by your car’s manufacturer. You can find the tire pressure recommendations in your owner’s manual or on the driver’s side doorjamb.

Fluid Replacement
Your car’s various fluids will need to be replaced or topped off on occasion. If you’re not familiar with all of your car’s fluid systems and decide to try some at-home maintenance, you could do serious damage. Oil changes should be accompanied by oil filter changes to avoid immediately fouling the new oil. A much more serious concern is using the wrong fluid for a particular system. Automatic Transmission Fluid, for example, could ruin a braking or cooling system and necessitate extensive repairs.

Jump Starting
If you’ve ever had a dead battery and had someone give you a jump, you know that it is incredibly helpful and actually looks quite easy. While the process is not difficult, it must be done in a very specific way to avoid dangerous and disastrous situations. Connecting jumper cables in the wrong order or to the wrong points on the car can lead to electrocution, fire, and electrical system damage.

Jerry’s Toyota offers drivers in the Baltimore area an easy way to keep their cars in shape. Our parts and service department will make sure that your car stays efficient and reliable for years to come. To schedule a service appointment, or to learn about our inventory of new and used Toyotas, call (888) 714-6153.


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