Older vehicles are notoriously inefficient, and your car or truck could be doing quite a bit of damage to the ecosystem every time that you get behind the wheel. While you will never be able to make your vehicle completely eco-friendly, there are a few steps that you can take to reduce its impact on the environment.
Schedule an Emissions Test
In most states and counties, residents must regularly schedule emissions tests. Also known as smog checks in some locations, those tests show you exactly how much toxic material your vehicle releases into the air. If your vehicle fails the emissions test, then you will probably need to hire a mechanic for further testing. You could have a problem with the injectors, oxygen sensor, or catalytic converter.
Get a Tune-Up
During a professional tune-up, a mechanic will carefully inspect dozens of different components under the hood. If any of those components are dirty, then they will be removed and cleaned. The mechanic might also make some adjustments to the spark plugs so that your vehicle continues to work as efficiently as possible. While every vehicle is slightly different, most cars and trucks need to be tuned every 10,000 to 12,000 miles.
Don’t Ignore Mechanical Problems
Most of the liquids inside your vehicle are extremely toxic, and a slow leak could have a huge impact on the environment. The best way to avoid those issues is to head to a local mechanic as soon as you notice any problems with your car or truck. Puddles and stains in your driveway are two of the most common signs of mechanical problems, and those issues can usually be taken care of by tightening or replacing some of the hoses.
Upgrade to a New Vehicle
There may come a point when you need to consider replacing your vehicle entirely. Selling to another private party might be tempting, but many companies will offer you money for your junk car. In addition to making cash offers on the spot, some of those companies will tow vehicles away for free as well. You might even be able to get an offer from one of those companies if your vehicle doesn’t run.
Trying to reduce your impact on the environment is an ongoing process, and taking a fresh look at your vehicle is a great place to start. With a few simple repairs and some maintenance tasks, you can improve your vehicle’s efficiency while saving yourself some money.
- Meghan Belnap is the author of this post.