It’s easy to want to save money when it comes to car repairs. Oil changes and fluid replacements are simple tasks that many people do in the comfort of their own garage. Major repairs, however, are not something that should be done at home. Simple mistakes can lead to bigger issues and costlier repairs in the long run. Here are three car repairs you should never try at home.
1. Transmission Maintenance or Repair
Your transmission is one of the most intricate parts under your hood. Transmissions consist of thousands of small parts, and narrow passageways for hydraulic fluid. With so many parts and pieces, all essential to the performance and functionality of your transmission, there is a lot that can go wrong, and none of the scenarios are kind to your pocket.
Transmission repairs and maintenance should be left to professionals well versed in the intricate workings of this particular part.
2. Timing Belt Replacement
For your engine to run properly, it is essential that the necessary valves open and close at the appropriate times your engine intakes and exhausts. The synchronization of these valves are controlled by the crankshaft or camshaft(s), which are controlled by… you guessed it, the timing belt.
Most manufacturers recommend replacing your timing belt every 60,000 miles or five years, whichever comes first. Trying to do this replacement at home can be much more expensive than taking it to a certified mechanic. If the top half of your engine (the cylinder head and valves), cannot sync with the bottom half of your engine (the crankcase and pistons), your vehicle will not run properly, if at all.
3. Replacing Suspension Mechanisms
At first glance, it may look relatively easy to replace parts like struts, arms, and bushings at home, but looks can be deceiving. Not only does replacing suspension mechanisms at home pose the risk of damaging important components, but it also comes with the risk of physical harm (like when dealing with compressed coil springs).
Even if a home mechanic is able to successfully replace suspension components, odds are that they do not have the equipment needed to properly align their wheels and get the job done right. Your best bet is to have your suspension issues repaired or replaced by a certified auto shop where the necessary equipment is available. Bad suspension can do more than make your ride bumpy, it can lead to more issues than you had when you began.