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Five things that you can do to extend engine life

Snapshot: Petrol engines are rated good for two lakh kms while diesels for twice that much. A lot depends on the driving habits and way the maintenance has been done etc. Here are the few tips that you can follow to extend engine's life.

Those who see cars not as mere transport options, tend to have a close attachment to their cars. To ensure that your car engine last really long, you don’t need to spend more on care or maintenance, instead just observe these simple tips apart from sending the car to the service station, these would ensure that you get long engine life.

1. Instead of spraying water, use mild degreaser

Engines are meant to work and drive the car. It’s essential that they are always in good shape, but it has got nothing to do the way they appear. By spraying water you not only risk exposing some of the electronics to greater risk of malfunctioning, it’s likely that the exposed part will get rusted more quickly, unless you can wipe it clean afterwards or can do it with proper car. You can instead use pressurised air to get rid of the dust. To make it absolutely clean, use a mild degreaser and a microfiber cloth to wipe it. This method would take longer but will benefit your engine in the long run.

2. Warm up the engine

Although with the advent of fuel injection and GDI (Gasoline Direct Injection) which are all modern technologies that compensate for the temperature changes and use rich mixture until the engine sufficiently warms up, it’s better not to accelerate too hard for the first 2-3 kms until the engine has reached its working temperature and the engine oil has warmed up enough to extract full potential. A gradual temperature change will cause less warpage of the engine block and hence less stress or stress induced permanent damage.

Read - 5 things you should never do in an automatic car!

3. Use engine flush every time

All essential fluids like engine oil, transmission oil, brake fluid etc. should be replaced as prescribed by the manufacturer. The purpose of engine oil is not only to provide lubrication but also to prevent the parts from rust, act as coolant and act as sealant. Most of these fluids lose their properties with time and use, therefore should be replaced as per the manufacturer’s recommendations. To prevent build up of carbon and sludge over time, always use a good engine flush before replacing engine oil.  

4. Perform routine check up and replace filters

 Low engine oil level for extended period can be damaging to the engine and eat it away slowly. Almost all fluids in a car are consumable type and get used up with engine operation. A routine checkup would reveal if any fluid requires top up. Engine oil filter should be replaced every time you put new engine oil, while the air filter can be cleaned according to the schedule, it is very important that it’s replaced too as per the prescribed schedule.    

5. Shift the gears at correct engine speed

How good the engine condition is, is generally determined by Kms that the car has driven, however it’s the engine revs that causes the engine to wear and tear. Pushing the engine all the way to the redline and beyond for extended period would only reduce its life. It’s also important that you do not drive the car in a higher gear that makes the engine to vibrate and puts load on the crankshaft. It’s better to take help of the gear change indicator that comes with most car nowadays and provides clear indication about the gear that you should be driving in. Not only would it extend the engine life, it would also help you extract better fuel efficiency out of car.

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