Fall River Drivers: 3 Basic Auto Repairs You Can Do Yourself

basic-repairsIn recent years, more and more car owners have tried to do at least the basic auto repairs for themselves. Your local auto parts store can help you by providing you with all of the car parts and accessories you need to keep your vehicle running as it should. LaCava Auto Parts has been providing local Fall River auto parts and services to the South Coast region for over 70 years and has built a solid reputation for providing trusted advice and services. While there are some basic services that you can definitely do for yourself to save money, there are other, more complicated repairs that you should leave to the pros.

One of the simplest things that you can do is to change your air filter. What stinks is that most dealerships and oil change places will charge you a lot more to do this simple task than it’s worth. Once you learn where your air filter is located and what needs to be done, you’ll never have to pay anyone to ever do it for you again. It only takes about 10 minutes or less, will cost you under $20 and it’s something that only needs to be done once a year or about every 12,000 miles. If you aren’t sure what type or size of filter you need, stop by LaCava Brothers Auto Parts Store in Fall River and we will look it up for you.

  • STEP ONE – Locate your filter by looking or checking the vehicle manual.
  • STEP TWO – Open it up and view how the air filter fits inside before you take it out, making a note of the way that it faces if you need to, as you will only be doing this once a year.
  • STEP THREE – Remove the old filter and insert the new filter.
  • STEP FOUR – Close the clips when you are done and make sure the filter is secure.

Staying on top of the condition and charge of your battery is another important, yet simple to do repair. Keeping your battery in good condition can save you money – and a lot of time – by keeping it in working order. You don’t want to go out to your car one morning to go to work only to find that your battery is dead. All it takes is about 20 minutes of your time, approximately $5 for the tools you need and a little bit of elbow grease. You can get all of the tools and parts you need at your local Fall River auto parts and services store – LaCava Auto Parts!

  • STEP ONE – Remove the battery terminals, making sure to remove the negative cable first before the positive; use a flathead screwdriver to pry them loose if they are stuck.
  • STEP TWO – Take the time to clean off the posts. There are a lot of tips online about household fluids that can be used, but a good quality product at your local car parts and accessories store will work better. Apply and use a wire brush to clean thoroughly.
  • STEP THREE – Rinse off the cleaning fluid using a little bit of water and dry off the posts completely with a clean rag.
  • STEP FOUR – Replace the battery terminals the way that they were before you removed them.

#3 – CHANGE the OIL
It might seem scary to change your oil the first time you do it, but it is really one of the simplest maintenance tasks you can perform. People did it themselves for many years before the advent of oil change shops popping up on every corner. A basic oil change will take you less than an hour and requires simple tools, such as an oil pan, funnel, ratchet and oil filter wrench. You can purchase all of these items at your local auto parts store. Make sure to get the oil filter wrench in the right size and type for your particular vehicle. Oil changes need to be done between 3,000 and 5,000 miles, depending on the auto manual.

WARNING: Never ever change our oil when the engine is hot. Park it and wait for it to cool before you start doing any work. To do this maintenance work you will need to jack up your car, so make sure you have a proper jack from your local Fall River auto parts and service store and that you are comfortable using the jack.

  • STEP ONE – Get underneath the vehicle and locate the oil pan.
  • STEP TWO – Unscrew the plug and drain out all of the old oil into the oil pan that you purchased.
  • STEP THREE – Once all the oil is out, replace the drain plug.
  • STEP FOUR – Remove the old oil filter from the engine area using an oil filter wrench.
  • STEP FIVE – Take time to lubricate the rubber gasket on the new oil filter with some fresh motor oil before filling the new oil filter about two thirds with new oil.
  • STEP SIX – Carefully screw in the new oil filter and hand tighten it – do not over-tighten.
  • STEP SEVEN – Fill the engine with fresh oil using the funnel and check the oil level with the dip stick to make sure you added enough.
  • STEP EIGHT – Properly dispose of the old oil filter and recycle the old oil. If you aren’t sure where to do this, ask the customer service agent at LaCava Auto Parts to find out about local services that will accept your old oil and filter.

You Can Do It at LaCava Auto Parts!
There are other simple repairs and maintenance work that can be done by even the most novice car owner. Replacing windshield wipers, changing out spark plugs, flushing the radiator, replacing brake pads, replacing the fuel filter and changing the tires – these are just some of the tasks that you can do yourself to save time and money compared to bringing it to a mechanic. For questions about any of our car parts and accessories, services and maintenance programs, call LaCava Auto Parts at 508-676-1951. With over 70 years of experience providing services and assistance at our Fall River auto parts and services store, we’re here to help you learn how to do it yourself!