5 Things Every Car Owner Should Know
1. What to keep in your glove box and it’s purpose
Vehicle Registration: For those unfortunate days, you get pulled over and the officer asks “License and Registration Please” its important to know where to find your vehicle registration. Digging through a disorganized pile of papers in your glove box is not ideal.
First-aid kit: A first aid kit is only useful if it’s accessible, we suggest keeping a small one in your dashboard, or if you don’t have space, you can also store it in the pocket behind your driver's seat.
Owner’s Manual: Although it’s not the first thing you may need in an emergency, it’s a good thing to have on hand. Your owner’s manual is packed full of important information such as; what type of oil your car needs, warning lights on your dashboard and how to troubleshoot common problems with your vehicle.
2. How to Jumpstart your Vehicle
Learning how to jumpstart your vehicle can save you money and time, check out one of our past posts for more information on step by step guide on how to jump start your car. As always we recommend calling a professional if you feel uncomfortable or unsure of your abilities to properly jumpstart your vehicle.
3. Understand Your Dashboard Symbols
When a new dashboard light comes on it can be alarming, especially if your unsure of the cause. These warning symbols are your vehicles way of communicating with you, indicating something may be wrong. All vehicles have both, warning symbols (Which turn on when theres an issue), and regular dashboard symbols (Lights, high beams, emergency brake etc.). Warning symbols usually appear red and either flashing or non-flashing, depending on the urgency. Although most dashboard symbols are the same vehicle to vehicle it's important to check your owners manual for any symbols your unsure of.
Red Warning Light: Indicates a safety issue or a serious complication with your vehicle, red warning lights should never be ignored. If your unsure of what the light means pull over and check your owner manual or look it up online.
Orange/Yellow Warning Light: This specific type of warning light can mean a variety of things such as; a specific system of your car needs servicing, an indication that a system is active or a warning that something isn't right (ex. low tire pressure, check engine light)
Other: Blue, white or green dashboard lights are solely for the purpose of letting the driver know that a system is active (ex. high beams, turning signals)
4. How to Keep Track of Regular Maintenance
Keeping a log of regular upkeep that your car needs can help you stay on track and prevent avoidable wear & tear on your vehicle. Set reminders in your calendar or keep a maintenance journal to record past services done and future services needed. Check out OIARG's printable checklist for a list of the regular maintenance your vehicle needs.
5. How to Check your Tire Pressure
Tire pressure fluctuates all year round, hot & cold weather condition almost always have an effect on the amount of air in your tires. Your TPMS, Tire Pressure Monitoring System, will alert you if there is an issue with your tire pressure by displaying a yellow warning light on your dashboard. It's important to recognize the light and understand how to add air to your tires, if you don't have a tire pump on hand many gas stations do.