"Leave it to the professional" isn't an all encompassing ideal, especially when it comes to maintaining your car. Even if you are getting your oil changed regularly, you may still be treading the path toward engine break-down simply by the way you drive. The following are 5 driving habits that damage engines, whether you are driving new or used vehicles.

#1 Refueling at the Last Moment

Testing the mileage of your new Cadillac maybe fun, but you shouldn’t wait for the last drop of gas to deplete before refueling. Running on a low-fuel tank causes the engine to use sediment from gasoline settled at the bottom of the tank. This dirty gas will eventually end up in your engine, and your fuel filter will prove to be ineffective if this continues on a regular basis.

#2 Revving the Engine

Unless you are on the race tracks with a Dodge charger, revving up the engine is pointless and harmful, especially when you have just turned on the ignition. The old is still down and hasn’t lubricated the engine parts doing this on a regular basis will significantly damage your engine. Along similar lines, you should also avoid idling, and just start driving, even during winters.  

#3 Braking While Going Downhill

It may feel safer, but riding the brakes downhill can lead to total brake failure. Pressure on the brakes while the car rides down a slope makes them very hot, which can literally boil the brake fluid and sever the cars braking capability. You should go for down-shifting. Cars like the Honda Odyssey automatically downshift when the driver travels downhill while braking.

#4 Abrupt Acceleration and Braking

Accelerating too quickly eats up gas and puts overburdens the engine. Braking abruptly reduces the life of your brake pads. So speed up and slow down more gradually to avoid costly repairs.

#5 Plan your Errands Wisely

Finally, most of us have the habit of using our car to run the smallest of errands. But this is not a good habit, considering that most of the wear and tear happens within the first 20 minutes of driving. So avoid using the car and use your legs when necessary. This will improve both your health and your mileage! But if the need arises, complete multiple tasks in one driving trip.

By Paul Cook MWC