5 Basic Car Parts and Maintenance Tips Everyone Should Know

Mechanic engineer fixing car battery in garage (selective focus).


As a car owner, it feels really empowering to maintain and repair your car yourself. However, if you don’t know anything about cars, it can also be intimidating.

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Luckily, there are a few things that every car owner can learn to keep their car running for years. Let’s break down the car repairs you need to know how to do and find basic car parts for your budget.

1. How to Change Your Oil

Going too long between oil changes is detrimental for your car engine, which could cut the lifespan of your car short. However, regular oil changes are time-consuming and expensive, so you may as well learn how to do it yourself.

Ideally, oil should be changed every 3,000 miles. To learn how to change your oil yourself, watch video tutorials like this one. Once you get the hang of it, it will just take you a few minutes to do in your driveway.

2. How to Change a Flat Tire

This is the most basic car repair you need to know in case of an emergency. Unlike routine car maintenance like an oil change, a flat tire is unpredictable. You never know where you might be when you have one, so it’s important always to have a spare tire ready to go.

However, don’t forget that spare tires are only temporary. Don’t drive on one for more than 50 miles at 50 miles per hour. When you get a flat tire, the best-case scenario is that you know how to replace it with a spare so you can take it straight to the auto shop to have a new tire put on.

3. How to Change Your Brake Pads

If you know how to change a tire, changing your brake pads will be easy for you. It requires a few basic car parts and tools, but luckily, you can find great used car parts online to fit your budget. For example, check out these used parts for a Scion FRS.

Keeping your brakes functioning smoothly is the most important thing for car safety, so always keep spare brake pads around and watch video tutorials to learn how to change them on your car.

4. Replacing Headlights and Taillights

A broken headlight or taillights can get you pulled over. Most of the time, you will get a warning, but a citation is never out of the realm of possibility. Knowing how to repair a broken headlight or taillights yourself will save you a trip to the mechanic and get you back on the road sooner.

Thankfully, it’s a pretty simple task that anyone who can change a lightbulb can learn how to do. Keep an eye on your lights and change them when you see them fade to avoid getting pulled over.

5. Installing New Spark Plugs

Despite what the mechanic may tell you, installing new spark plugs is incredibly simple. But that doesn’t make it any less important. Spark plugs ignite the gasoline that powers your vehicle so that faulty spark plugs can keep you off the road.

Check Out Used Basic Car Parts

Knowing these simple car repair and maintenance tasks will save you tons of time and money, and you’ll feel more connected to your car. To save even more money, shop around for used basic car parts online.

For more car repair tips and resources, check out the rest of the blog.