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You recommended recently that a Hyundai i10 would be a good car for me - and I am due to get mine next week. I read your column every week and you often give good tips on how to look after a new car - like regular servicing, oil changes etc. Since I pass the paper on to our mechanic, I don't have all the back numbers, so wonder if you could give me your top tips for caring for my new car - as I have only had old cars before and this is definitely a new experience for me. I am very grateful for all your advice.

Asked on 12 September 2009 by

Answered by Honest John
Irv Gordon’s ten top tips. Irv is the owner of a pristine 1966 Volvo P1800, which he has driven more than 2,600,000 miles.

• Start with a car you really like. “If you don’t like your car you’ll
never go the distance.”
• Change your oil and filter regularly. “If there is any one maintenance
activity that will extend the life of your car’s engine, this is it.”
• Use factory equipment parts. “They are definitely more compatible with your car. I believe in keeping my Volvo a Volvo.”
• Use one brand of oil. “Using one brand of oil assures uniform quality.”
• Spend a few minutes a week checking under the bonnet. “Even the most mechanically challenged car owners can look for low fluid levels or deterioration of belts and hoses.”
• Wash your car regularly. “A clean car gives you an excellent opportunity to look for small nicks and scratches.”
• Wax at least twice a year. “It provides protection against oxidation and rust.”
• Develop a good relationship with your dealer and mechanic. “Both are your partners in the long run.”
• Use petrol from a high volume station. “Without heavy traffic petrol
remains in storage units for long periods of time.”
• When your car makes a funny noise, listen to it. “The longer you wait the greater potential for damage.”

See also FAQ answer 'Running in a Petrol Car' at www.honestjohn.co.uk
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