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Learning to drive is an exciting time and every kid’s life. The ability to drive a car gives teenagers a sense of freedom that they may not have experienced before. With that said, just because being able to drive a car provides a sense of freedom, it also comes with more responsibility. There is more to driving a car than just getting behind the steering wheel. There is maintenance that will have to go into it as well. And as problems arise, every new driver should know how to recognize them when they happen. Knowing the problems that are happening and how to take care of them will also help promote safe driving as well. Here are a few common auto issues that teens should be able to diagnose and take care of with limited assistance.
The Car Doesn’t Start
If the car doesn’t start, it could be that the battery is dead. It could also be that the starter or alternator isn’t working properly. This will be determined by how much power is generated when the key is turned. If there is no power generated at all, you likely have a dead battery, and new batteries can be purchased at almost any auto part or big box retailer.
A Tire Has Gone Flat
Flat tires can be relatively easy to diagnose and repair. Typically, your car will tell you if a tire is not properly inflated, and best way to fix the problem is to simply add air. If the tire has a cut or a puncture, it may need to be sealed or replaced.
Your Vehicle’s Engine is Overheating
You will know that the engine is overheating because the needle on the temperature gauge will move closer to the top of the indicator. In the event that your car is overheating, pull over and turn the car off. If it is not especially hot outside, there could be a problem with the engine, and the car should be taken to a service center immediately.
The Heating and Air Conditioning Don’t Work
In some cases, the car won’t warm up or cool off because a fan blade is stuck. In other cases, the air conditioning system may need more coolant to work properly. It is generally possible to fix a fan blade or add more coolant on your own if you don’t want to pay service center fees.
Fluid May Leak from the Vehicle
A fluid leak could be the result of a broken gasket or the fact that you put too much liquid in an engine compartment. If you see fluid underneath the car for more than a day or two, the car should be taken for service.
As a new driver, it is important to notice any changes in your vehicle’s performance. It is important to know what problems can occur and what they are when they do occur. It will make you a better driver in the long run and you will be safer on the road because of it. These could be the early signs of a significant problem, but taking care of them early can make them easier and less expensive to fix.