Car Trouble: Easy Fixes for When You're on the Road

Cars are a great method of getting around. Driving from place to place is fast, convenient, and fun. But what is one to do when the engine suddenly dies, or the car starts to pull, or the brakes start to screech? A number of common car problems can plague the unwary driver. With a little knowledge though, fixing minor issues can be a snap.

The Car Pulls To The Side

Poor handling is a common complaint among drivers. If the car pulls to one side, handles turns poorly, or brakes slowly, the most likely culprit is an under-inflated tire. When properly inflated, a car's tires provide support and cushioning for the metal frame, meaning easy handling. A poorly inflated tire can cause the car to pull. Be sure to keep a tire pressure gauge in the glove box, and check tire pressure every few weeks. A recommended maximum tire pressure will be listed in the owner's manual or on a sticker inside the driver's door. If the car is pulling, find a service station and ask to use the air pump.

Car Trouble

The Engine Clicks

A clicking engine is most likely a symptom of low oil. This is a minor issue, but it can quickly cause major problems if left unresolved. Without oil to lubricate the moving parts, the engine can wear out. Pull into the nearest service station, open the hood, and check the dipstick. If the oil is below the "add" level, add a quart of oil. Run the engine for a few moments, then turn off the vehicle and check the oil level again. Continue adding oil until it reaches the "full" mark on the dipstick, and the clicking sound should stop. If the sound does not stop after adding oil, this is a symptom of a more serious problem that will require a mechanic's attention.

The Key Is Stuck In The Ignition

This is a common problem that is the result of a poorly aligned steering lock mechanism. A stuck key can be resolved by turning the key to the "on" position, moving the steering wheel to center, then turning the key back to the "off" position and pulling the key out. Do not try to force the key or the steering column, or they may break. Spraying a lubricant into the lock may help, but if it does not, the dealership that sold the car may be able to solve the problem. Most technical jobs like replacing parts, aligning wheels, or any kind of transmission repair are best left to a qualified mechanic. However, minor issues are easily remedied with the right know-how. These simple steps will keep your car humming along so that you can get to your destination safely.

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About the Author:

John is a retired police officer that works as an editor and writer for various blogs, he enjoys most writing about his passion i.e cars. He also works at used car certification company in New York, and writes also for the hertz car auto sales site, where they liquidate rental cars.

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