How to Keep Your Clunker Operational

A car loan is a long-term relationship. With the average new car loan length at nearly 70 months, and used loan lengths not far behind, it may make more sense to live with something a little older. But keeping a beat up car can be a drag. Here are some tips for old car maintenance from Kennedy Transmission.

Pull Out the Owner’s Manual

A mature set of wheels doesn’t have to become an unreliable car. Keep it rolling past its prime with basic maintenance. Reference your owner’s manual for details about scheduling these important routines.

  • Regularly change the oil.
  • Change fuel and air filters.
  • Check and replace coolant system fluids.
  • Keep battery terminals clean.
  • Rotate tires, and check pressure.

Go Easy on the Old Engine

A little pampering helps put extra miles on old car engines. These five tips make it easier to drive a clunker longer by holding down repairs and extending your time on the road.

Fill Up the Fuel Tank

Try to keep the fuel tank at least half full. Otherwise, condensation on the tank’s interior migrates to the fuel pump and causes serious problems.

Give It a High-Octane Treat

High-octane fuel costs more than regular gas because it contains more detergents and additives. An annual fill-up with the good stuff can help keep your catalytic converter and pistons in good shape.

Start Out Slow

An easy start allows internal components to reach normal operating temperatures before you hit the highway. Taking it slow the first few miles also reduces initial pull on your battery.

Look for the Check Engine Light

Ignoring this simple alert system can cause all kinds of trouble in an older car. When the Check Engine light comes on, schedule a checkup with your certified auto pro as soon as possible.

Listen to Your Clunker

Whines and squeaks under the hood are sure signs of engine problems. Brakes that grind or squeal need professional inspection. Pay attention to a clunker’s rumbles, hisses and growls.

Trust Our Certified Auto Technicians

You can take care of basic DIY maintenance on older wheels, but trust our certified auto techs with the important jobs. We handle everything from brake trouble to transmission repairs.

When you bring your beater to one of our independent shops, an expired warranty never matters. Our auto service centers help beat up cars stay on the road with affordable aftermarket parts.

Trust our Kennedy Transmission pros to keep your clunker from turning into an unreliable car. Depend on us to treat you with personalized customer service. We’re your one-stop shop for Minnesota total car care. Stop by one of our shops today—we’ll be happy to work on that old beat up car of yours.

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