Every vehicle owner knows the importance of having an annual inspection. Vehicle inspections can extend the lifespan of your vehicle and stop sudden failures from happening. Every year, US drivers have to deal with 69 million vehicle breakdowns, but they’re not always caused by obvious things, such as worn tires or worn-out batteries. Strange and unexpected things can cause vehicle failures too, so let’s find out what you should keep an eye out for.
Unusual causes of car breakdowns
83% of drivers say that they drink non-alcoholic drinks while driving. It’s not illegal to do this, but it’s not safe either. Drinking while driving could also cause your car to break down. Imagine you grab your cup of coffee, take a sip, and jump because it’s too hot, causing coffee to fall out of your cup. Any liquid like this could get into your air vents, radio, or dashboard. There are various wires and electrical components behind these car parts and they’re likely to short circuit if they get wet. Things could get even worse if you’re driving a vehicle that is controlled by a user interface, such as a Tesla, as you won’t have any control of the vehicle.
Mice like to nest in the air box in the engine. Once they get here, they have access to your entire car. A mouse will happily nibble on your wiring and this puts your vehicle at risk of breaking down every time you turn the engine on. You can remove mice from your vehicle with things such as mouse traps and repellents. You may also want to fumigate your car to get rid of all traces of mice. A professional fumigation service will use the appropriate chemicals to do this and will only need access to your vehicle once. If you want to do the job yourself, you’ll need chemicals, PPE, safety clothing, and plenty of time to do the job properly.
Putting too much fuel in
11% of drivers say that they carry on driving when the low fuel light comes on, even though there’s a high risk of them breaking down. But did you know that putting too much fuel in your vehicle is a problem too? If you keep putting gas into your car after the pump has clicked off, you risk damaging the charcoal canister that’s part of the onboard refuelling vapor recovery (ORVR) system. This system is designed to catch harmful fuel vapours. The best thing that could happen in this situation is that the check engine warning light comes on. This means that you need to get to a garage for repairs as soon as possible. An even worse scenario is that your vehicle breaks down mid-journey and you have to arrange to be towed.
Vehicle breakdowns happen every day in America and they are typically caused by just a handful of things, such as overheating or brake problems. But you need to be aware of the more obscure and strange things that can cause vehicle breakdowns, as highlighted above.
Featured image: Jamie Street/Unsplash