If you are an experienced driver, you will know that there are certain levels in your car that you should check from time to time. And if you are not, you should know that the fluids that we will talk about below are key to the health of the car and to making your driving safer, especially with the passage of time and the loss of reflexes.
This is perhaps the best known of all and one of the fundamentals for the smooth operation of the vehicle. The motor oil should not only be checked from time to time, but it must be changed when it is no longer in good condition, otherwise it could be serious breakdowns. Likewise, if it is below or above the appropriate level, it will also have dire consequences for the mechanics of the car.
The first step to check the oil level is to open the hood of the car, because that is where both the dipstick to check it and the opening of the tank itself is located. Then, with the car already cold (do not measure it when you finish driving, as the heat causes the level to appear higher), remove the measuring rod that generally in the most modern cars has a ring to make it easier for you. You will see it full of oil, so clean it with a paper and put it back in its cavity. Then take it out again and check that the level is between the part that marks the minimum and the one that points to the maximum.
In case it is below, the best thing is that you go to the workshopAlthough you can also fill the tank with new oil (with the same characteristics as the one you used at the time). Of course, if it turns out that you put too much or you see that it exceeds the top mark, you should take your car to the mechanic to extract the excess.
Apart from the level marked by the rod, it is interesting that observe the color of the oil itself since it is an unequivocal indicator of what its status is. Thus, if it still has a golden tone, it is clean. However, if it starts to turn brown, the best thing is to think about changing it … and if it is almost black and does not smell good, take your steps to the workshop because it is urgent to change it.
Another of the levels that you have to monitor regularly is that of the refrigerant, key so that the car does not overheat and dangerous breakdowns occur that would virtually end the life of the engine and other essential mechanical parts.
This liquid (normally a striking color that makes it easier to see) is made up of distilled water and antifreeze and, as in the previous case, its inlet is located under the hood, near the radiator. To check if it is in the scales that it should, you just have to look at if it reaches the mark that the deposit itself (generally translucent) presents.
If it is below, you should add the same type of coolant as there is and not go over that mark. On the other hand, if it is very above it, it is best to go to the workshop, as it could be indicative of a breakdown or it would simply pose a danger when the liquid heats up, because it could come out. At this point it should be remembered that never check coolant level with hot car or running because it is very dangerous and you could burn yourself. To do this, the engine must be cold and idle.
When the liquid exceeds 20,000 or 30,000 kilometers, it will not matter if it is at its levels or not, because he will have lost his abilities and the best thing will be to change it.
Windshield washer fluid level
Less important than the previous ones is the liquid that helps us to keep our windshields clean, although that does not mean that it is not essential, because it helps us to improve visibility if it is very dirty since the windshield wipers do not break prematurely.
You will know when it is missing at the moment in which you act these and no liquid comes out. Then you just have to raise the hood and fill the tank. It is best that you use some liquid with soap prepared so that the cleaning is better, but if you do not have it at that time, opt at least for water.
Brake fluid level
Unlike the previous one, this is critical to driving and occupant safety. Normally you have to check it once or twice a year and every two approximately you will have to go to the workshop to have it renewed. As in the first two, wait until the engine is cold and look for the reservoir whose cap indicates that it is the one that contains the brake fluid. If it is low, you should approach the workshop because it assumes that the braking system is not working properly.
Steering fluid level
In the same way that occurs with oil, it is possible to know the level of this key liquid for vehicle direction consulting a rod prepared to show it. With the car warm, take it out and check that it marks between the minimum and the maximum. If it is lower than recommended (the most common), you will have to refill the deposit or go to a workshop to have the address checked. A good indicator that something is failing (if the car itself does not mark it with a warning) is when you notice the «harsher» direction usual.