10 Early Warning Signs of Car Problems

Modern cars have sophisticated computer systems that provide a lot of information through warning signs on the dashboard. Those warning signs are indicators of potential problems that you should get checked, but you can also tell a lot about the health of your car from the way it drives and the noises it makes.

Below are 10 early warning signs that you should watch out for to spot potential issues with your car. If you notice any of them, you should get your car checked as soon as you can as leaving them for too long can cause more extensive damage that is costlier to fix. Many of the warning signs also indicated potential safety issues, increasing the level of urgency. Plus, there is the convenience factor. After all, nobody likes breaking down or having their car off the road for an extended period of time because something that started off as a small irritation became a major problem.

Here are our 10 early warning signs of car problems.

1. Brakes that feel soft – this could be an indicator of low brake fluid or that your brake pads need to be replaced.

2. Heavy steering – often this is caused by a power steering leak.

3. Vibration at cruising speed – could be a problem with the wheels or the suspension.

4. The car is hard to start – this is often the battery. If the battery is okay it might be a fault in the electrical system or starter motor.

5. Burning smells – this is often caused by a leak somewhere in the car. The smell is produced when the leaked fluid is heated up – for example, by touching a metal part of the engine that gets hot.

6. The car pulls to one side under braking – this is typically an indicator of a brake problem.

7. Tyres not wearing evenly – this could be a problem with the pressure of the tyres or it could be that your wheels need to be aligned.

8. Knocking sound – this is usually a problem with the wheel bearings. It is often most prominent when going around corners.

9. Hesitation under acceleration – provided you have fuel in the car, this could be caused by a problem with the fuel system. Often it happens after running the car when the petrol level is very low. Doing this can suck sediment from the fuel tank into the system.

10. Engine rattles – this could be one of a number of problems, most of which will have to be checked by a mechanic. The first thing you should check, however, is the oil level.

As you can see, you can check some of these issues yourself. For example, examining your tyres or checking the oil level in your car. The rest you will need a mechanic to check. Doing it early is the most cost effective approach – it means issues can be dealt with before they become major problems.

Finally, don’t ignore warning signs on your dashboard either. To keep your car running smoothly and efficiently, and to save you money over the long term, you should address suspected car problems immediately.

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