If you’re a first time driver, and you’ve just bought your first car, you’re probably feeling a mixture of excitement and nerves right now. You’ve finally taking the step to be independent, and you’ve got the travel ability to prove it! But you’ve also got a car to take care of, that’s going to be expensive to run, and who knows what might happen when you’re out on the road.
So, before you get behind the wheel, let’s go through some common car problems that you’re most likely to face. You want to be prepared for them, after all.
Dealing with a Dead Battery
Dead batteries are a plague of the car world. Dealing with a dead battery can be a lot of trouble, especially if you’re on a long journey with no help in sight. Of course, if you manage to flag down another car, you could use your jump leads to restart the battery, but that’s not always an option.
Make sure you know, ahead of time, how old the battery in your car is. Most batteries last about 5 years at max, and you’re going to want to buy a new one at least half a year before the old one is meant to give out.
Locking Yourself Out of the Vehicle
Don’t worry, we all do it. We’ve all forgotten or lost our car keys, and subsequently locked ourselves out of our cars, and look like a fool in the parking lot. But there’s always a way to get around this little problem.
If you find yourself in a situation such as locked out of car, there’s always going to be someone to ring. It could be a family member at home, who could bring you your keys. It could be a locksmith, if your key is nowhere to be found. Or it could just be a tow company, if you’re in the middle of nowhere, with no help around for miles. The main thing is not to panic!
Solving a Radiator Leak
If your engine seems to be overheating, and you’re noticing a bit of smoke coming out of the front of your car, the first thing to note is the color. And if you know it’s a coolant leak, it’s most likely a leaky radiator. Don’t worry, that’s very fixable.
Inspect the engine, to see if the coolant reservoir has cracked, as well as any other damage. Try to clean the radiator off as best you can as well, to see if there’s a visible crack in the structure. If there is, you can easily seal it off with a sealant, which are available in all mechanical shops and various online stores – you won’t usually have to fork out for a professional repair service to do it for you.
So, if you’re a first time driver, make sure you understand how your car works, and what’s most likely to go wrong with it. You want to build your confidence for the road, after all.