If you’re not an amateur mechanic or a driving enthusiast, car maintenance probably seems like quite a chore. It can also be rather costly, especially when components wear out and need to be repaired. You may find yourself wondering if all of those car care procedures are truly necessary.
Sadly, the answer is yes. Keeping up with all of the recommended maintenance and inspection procedures may be an inconvenience, but you’ll be more inconvenienced if your car breaks down on the side of the road or, worse, is involved in an accident. Here are some common problems that make your care unsafe to drive.
Tires with worn-out treads are extremely dangerous to drive on. The grooves in the treads are responsible for displacing water and debris as you roll down the road. The treads become shallower with age due to road friction, which robs them of their ability to properly displace rain and grime.
That means your car will be much more likely to hydroplane. Essentially, your tires lose their ability to cut through water and grip the asphalt as the treads wear down. They end up floating on top of all that water and debris as you drive at highway speeds. When that happens, your car can potentially kick sideways or spin out, causing an accident.
With worn-out treads your tires also won’t be able to grab onto wet pavement when turning or braking hard nearly as well as they did when they were new, even at lower speeds. You’ll be much more likely to slide. If that happens on a narrow road or in heavy traffic, the results can easily be deadly.
Exhaust leaks are annoying; they make your car loud and stinky. More importantly, they create a potentially deadly hazard for you and your passengers.
Ideally, the catalytic converters in your exhaust system oxidizes dangerous fumes to make them less dangerous. The rest of the fumes are expelled safely out your car’s tailpipe.
However, damaged exhaust pipes let the exhaust gasses escape prematurely. Those same dangerous gasses can sometimes work their way into the cabin of your car and build up on longer trips. That can lead to smelly interior air, sickening fumes, and even potentially deadly health risks from carbon monoxide poisoning.
Worn Brake Pads
If you hear your brakes squealing when you come to a stop, the annoying sound is the least of your worries. Brake pads are designed to be loud as they approach the end of their lives to warn drivers that it’s time for a tune-up.
Brake pads start to screech while they still have enough material left for adequate stopping power. However, that doesn’t mean you should put off replacing them. If you wait too long, all of the rubber padding will wear away, leaving you with the metal pad backing plates grinding directly against your brake rotors.
Obviously, the metal backing plates won’t be able to stop your car properly. They’ll screech even louder, heat up like crazy, and potentially gouge or warp your rotors. Then you’ll have to pay for an entire brake and rotor overhaul, which will cost you a lot more than simply replacing the pads in the first place.
More importantly, worn-out brake pads are unsafe. They won’t stop your car nearly as efficiently as they were designed to. And eventually you may find yourself suddenly stomping on a brake pedal that feels like a soft sponge as your car rolls right into the rear of the person in front of you.A bit of preventative maintenance goes a long way when it comes to keeping your car safe and reliable. Contact the experts at DeMers Automotive to schedule all of your vehicle inspection and repair needs. Our team of mechanics have years of experience and the most advanced diagnostic equipment available to go over your car with a fine-tooth comb and ensure it’s safe, reliable, and properly maintained.