Diagnosing Car Issues When You Don't Know Much About Cars
Car owners who buy new cars shouldn't have to worry about their vehicles malfunctioning or having serious safety or operational issues. Unfortunately, new cars do have problems all the time. When issues arise, vehicle owners may wish to consult with an attorney about how California's lemon laws could protect them and provide them with legal remedies.
Not every car problem gives car owners the right to seek protections under lemon laws, so some car owners will simply have to cope with their issues and try to get repairs made as quickly and cost-effectively as possible. Unfortunately, when you don't know much or anything about cars, it can be hard to identify what the problem is and find someone to fix it. Popular Mechanics has provided some tips to help people who don't know a lot about cars try to diagnose their car issues.
How to Diagnose Problem With Your Vehicle
Popular Mechanics advises you take these key steps to try to narrow down the problem with your car so you can see if it is something that you can solve or so you can make sure you don't get ripped off when you go to get repairs made.
- Look for indicators of issues: Popular Mechanics advises checking the warning lights on your vehicle and responding quickly when a light goes on. The check engine light doesn't give you many cues for what to fix, but other lights like the oil light or a warning indicating low tire pressure will let you know what needs to be done with your car.
- Check your tires: You'll want to ensure your tires have sufficient tread depth to avoid hydroplaning and want to make sure there are no side cracks or bulges to reduce the chances of a tire blowout. To determine if your tires have sufficient tread or if you need replacement, put a penny in the tire tread with Lincoln's head facing the wheels center. If the top of his head is visible on the penny, it's time to replace your tires.
- Keep an eye out for fluid puddles: If you have fluid pooling under your vehicle, this is a major red flag because your car relies on fluids like oil, brake flood, steering fluid and coolant to operate properly.
- Listen for creaking or clunking: If the suspension components on your car wear out, this could lead to clunking when you drive over a bump and force is placed on the struct or shock. If the grease in your ball joints and bushings wear out, this also leads to clunking.
- Listen for ticking and squealing: These sounds could indicate a timing belt is slipping, while squealing when you turn the wheel could be a sign of the power steering pump failing.
These are just a few key red flags to look out for to try to figure out what's wrong with your car. If you have repeated problems with a new vehicle, you should talk with an Orange County lemon law attorney to find out what remedies are available to you.