Heels & Horsepower Magazine

4 Simple Car Maintenance Checks You Should Do Every 4 Weeks

By H&h Admin

Contrary to popular belief, car maintenance is not something which only takes place at a service dealership; rather it is something you can do every few weeks in your own driveway.

With the ever-increasing demands of work, running a business, looking after your family and ensuring you make time for yourself, a month can go by very quickly.  So quickly in fact that you might neglect to do more than just ensure your car has enough fuel to take you from point A to point B. 

To be certain that your car runs as smoothly as possible (and that you don’t end up stranded on the side of the road), it is important to maintain it as best as possible.  

Here are 4 checks you should do on your car monthly:

1. Check Engine Oil

Engine oil plays many roles within an engine, the most important being that it lubricants the various engine parts which are constantly in motion.  In the absence of sufficiently good quality engine oil, these parts would grind against one another, causing costly or irreparable damage to the engine.

If you drive an older vehicle, you can check your engine oil yourself approximately every second time you fill up your fuel tank. However, in the case of relatively modern cars, the manufacturer advises that a qualified technician checks this and other issues you might encounter.  

2. Wiper Blades and Windscreen Washer Fluid

Wiper blades are an understated safety feature that ensures optimal visibility at all times.  As with other car parts, wiper blades deteriorate over time, particularly if your car is not stored undercover.  The sun and other natural elements can erode the quality of the wiper blades thereby reducing their effectiveness.

It is advisable to check the level of the windscreen washer fluid whenever you check the quality of your car’s wiperblades. Contrary to popular belief water is not the best fluid with which to wash your windscreen.  

Rather, a specifically formulated washer liquid works best to clean and maintain the integrity of the materials of both the wiper blades and windscreen itself.  Windscreen washer fluid is inexpensive and can be obtained at any good quality car parts outlet.

3. Tyres and Pressure Levels

A flat tyre can happen at any time but the best way to negate such a nasty surprise is to keep an eye on your tyre pressure. Regularly checking the overall condition of your tyres, allows you to timeously spot low pressure, worn tread and other anomalies such as cuts, lumps and irregular or uneven wear.  Don’t forget to check the condition of the spare tyre too!.

4. Headlights. Brake lights. Tail lights. Indicators

Lights are a critical component of your everyday driving safety.  Lights make it easy for you to see where you are going and just as importantly, allow others to see you too. To check the proper functionality of your vehicle’s lighting system, engage any of the lights and walk around your vehicle to confirm that they are working.  

Should you discover that any of the lights are not working, have the fuses checked or bulbs replaced immediately.

Your safety and that of other road users depends on how well you maintain your vehicle.  The above check-list is simple and can be done in a relatively short amount of time.  

Checking these basics could prevent accidents and costly repairs; also you will be surprised how easily working this check-list into your monthly schedule is, once you get into the habit of doing it. 

First ever all-Black African Team Enters Kyalami 9-Hour Race

Press Release: South African GT Racing Association

When the teams line up on the grid for the start of the Kyalami 9-Hour race on Saturday, 4th December, a piece of South African motorsport history will be made with the appearance of the first all-Black African team tackling the famous race.

The final round of the Intercontinental GT Championship will see Xolile Letlaka, Tschops Sipuka and Philip Kekana take on the best GT3 racers in the world behind the wheel of their Into Africa Mining Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo.

Letlaka and Sipuka raced their Huracan GT3 to two victories and a second place finish from their four starts in the 2021 SA Endurance Series, providing a taste of things to come in the Kyalami 9-Hour where they will be aiming to win the National Class. Despite missing the first round of the Endurance series, and a non-finish at the Gqeberha (Port Elizabeth) round, Letlaka and Sipuka lie third in the championship standings.

48-year-old businessman Xolile Letlaka became the first man of colour to win a round of the Endurance series last year, his first race in a pukka GT3 car, teamed with Charl Arangies.

“It will probably be one of the proudest days of my life”, said Letlaka about how he will feel when standing on the grid with his teammates while the National Anthem is played. “Fielding a team with two drivers who grew up in rural villages in the Eastern Cape and one from Soweto speaks to my motto of “we lift as we rise.”

Tschops Sipuka needs no introduction to SA motorsport fans. He won the Polo Cup title in 2002 and 2003 before progressing into production cars in a factory-backed Audi. After a seven year absence from the sport, he returned to GTC racing in 2019, winning the East London round. The 43-year old Sipuka raced a Mercedes Supertruck and tested an Indy Lights car during his varied career.

“It will be an honour to showcase ourselves on an international stage,” said Sipuka. “Consistency and speed will be our watchwords. The Kyalami 9-Hour is going to be a very special moment for our team.”

Philip Kekana is both excited and nervous about his GT3 racing debut; having been out of the sport for a long time, he is relishing his test session ahead of the big race.

“It’s going to be a steep learning curve for me; I have to become accustomed to the car – understand how the machine works and how far I can push it. I was very excited when Xolile called to offer me the drive. I’ve been training hard since then”, said the 55-year-old Sowetan resident.

Kekana started racing Group N cars in 1997 before winning the title in 2002 and hopes the Into Africa Mining team will inspire young black children to take a bigger interest in motorsport, especially from an engineering perspective.