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29.12.2015 - 07:32

5 Vital Components even non-car enthusiasts should know

Most of us use automobiles almost on a daily basis, and having some idea about the vehicle is important. In the interest of safety and reliability, it’s essential that you understand some of the basic consumables of your automobile and how they function.

Most of us use automobiles almost on a daily basis, and having some idea about the vehicle is important. In the interest of safety and reliability, it’s essential that you understand some of the basic consumables of your automobile and how they function. Knowing these things, and checking them yourself, will ensure that minor issues never turn into your biggest nightmares. 

 

Air Filters: The air your car breathes reaches the engine via an air filter. Air is needed by the fuel to burn inside the chamber and bad quality air can damage your engine in many ways. The air filter (usually made from pleated paper) helps clean the incoming air and stops harmful dust particles from entering the engine, which can cause aggravated wear of engine parts and contamination of engine oil. Therefore, it is empirical to make sure that the air filter is free of dust particles (a check every 5,000 kilometres is sufficient). 

 

Oil Filters: Similar to the functioning of the air filter, an oil filter purifies the engine oil and make sure that impurities in the oil are filtered out. Impurities in the engine oil can occur in two forms – minute metal shavings caused due to friction generated during daily driving and general wear & tear, and others such as dust particles that can seep in through a badly functioning oil filter and cause damage to the engine. By changing the engine oil filter at regular intervals, as specified by the manufacturer, one can ensure that the engine oil is as clean as possible and minimize long-term damage to the engine. 

 

Coolant: Almost all the cars today are ‘water-cooled’ which means that they need coolant (or water) to dissipate the heat generated by the engine. An engine coolant is generally a mixture of water & chemicals such as anti-freeze and rust inhibitors. Pumping this fluid through the fixed parts of the engine provides for much more stable and reliable engines. Therefore, especially in the hot summers, it is essential that the correct level of coolant is maintained in the engine and checked regularly (once every fortnight), as insufficient coolant levels can lead to overheating and, in extreme cases, failure of the engine. 

 

Brake Fluid: In the past, vehicles were fitted with Drum based braking systems, but due to the lack of relative braking force and their susceptibility to overheating, they have been replaced by Brake Discs. In this case, when the brake pedal is pressed, it acts as a lever which exerts force on the piston in the brake booster, which in turn pressurizes the hydraulic fluid. This pressure is transferred to the brakes themselves. Now, interestingly, the braking systems of this type are closed-loop systems – therefore, no fluid is consumed in its operation. This is what makes regular checking of the brake fluid level absolutely vital, as any lowering of the level means that there is a leak in the system and needs to be looked at immediately – as continuous leakage can lead to brake failure with catastrophic consequences. 

 

Windshield wipers: Taking care of the wipers is a really easy and painless process. However, due to lethargy for the most part, we tend not to pay due attention to them. As a general rule, wipers are made of rubber and wear quickly in our conditions. So, one should inspect them before every monsoon, and replace them when necessary.

 

For the latest automotive news and reviews, visit autox.in

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