To help save you time and money on car maintenance, we’ve penned a few easy pointers on how to maintain your car during the lockdown.

It certainly seems strange saying this, but we’re slowly going back to the ‘new normal’. Given the conditions of the lockdown and terrible second Covid-19 wave, we’ve all been advised to stay home, stay safe and prioritize the health of ourselves and loved ones. While so, let’s not forget that those precious rides parked in our garage also come under that ‘loved ones’ category. Taking good care of your car during the lockdown is always vital, it helps you save time and money. More so, negligence during this time can also lead to long-term damage or you might just be in store for a nasty surprise once you revisit your car after the lockdown. To keep things simple and clear, here’s a seven-point guide on how to maintain your car during the lockdown.

How to maintain your car during the lockdown – Care care tips

how to maintain your car during lockdown

Use the gear instead of the handbrake

We’ve all been thought to always use the handbrake while parking, yes, that’s parking 101. When it comes to a lockdown though, leaving it parked with your handbrake on, could lead to mechanical complications. On a normal day, we use the handbrake since we know it’s only for a matter of hours. However, in the case of a lockdown, keeping your handbrake engaged for prolonged periods could jam it up. Instead, we’d suggest you use the gear-lock, and specifically the reverse gear.

Protect the exteriors

Whether your car’s parked on the street or your driveway, invest in a good car cover. This helps in multiple ways, protecting your car from the harsh heat, keeping it clean, protecting the paint from micro scratches and avoiding bird poop. We understand it’s quite an annoyance to fit and unfit the cover time and again, but this simple habit comes with a ton of benefits.

how to maintain your car during lockdown

Do a routine battery and oil check

One of the most important pointers in car maintenance is periodically checking up on your battery. It’s a no-brainer that keeping a plugged-in battery on an idle vehicle will drain it out cold. To simply prevent this, start your car twice a week, place it in neutral and gentle accelerate. While so, this will heat up the oils and circulate it through the engine, maintaining its viscosity. However, if you can’t manage to do all of this, we’d suggest you to disconnect the battery from its terminal. When you think of how to maintain your car during lockdown, this one’s important. Take note.

Take a small trip around the block

We know that you can’t really move your car around too much but well, you need to. Periodically, make the shortest trip around the block or at least around the parking lot. Apart from the previous point, this is actually important to simply keep things active and running. This is in terms of your air conditioning, your electricals and your tires. Why your tires? Because staying idle for too long actually puts pressure on only one part of the tire tube. This could lead to damage. So well, just to let it breathe and stretch out, do move it around.

how to maintain your car during lockdown

Check the electricals

One of the biggest irks of car maintenance is rodents and there’s one thing they love nibbling on, wires. Don’t be surprised if you revisit your car after a hiatus and witness a few technical anomalies. Your window slider might be slower, your wipers seem weaker and certain lights aren’t turning on. It’s a frustrating mess, we agree. Seeing a car stationary for too long, rodents get curios and make their way in. It’s always advisable to periodically check your car’s electricals and invest in an anti-rodent solution.

Conscious air cleansing

I’d say this is more a note of personal care than car care. After long periods of no use, benzene, which is emitted from plastic trims of your dashboard, AC vents and other components of your cabin, tend to accumulate which isn’t something you want to inhale. What you need to do here is, lower the windows for about 15 minutes after starting your car. The gush of the air conditioner’s fan and the ventilation should clear up the cabin.

how to maintain your car during lockdown

Consult your dealership in case of emergencies

In any situation where you’ve found damage to your car, it could be in terms of electricals, exterior or cabin, always consult your dealership first. Most car brands today understand that driving a car to a garage isn’t an option today and have special lockdown solutions in place. Don’t make the mistake of going to your local garage for a quick-fix. It could be unsafe and wouldn’t guarantee the treatment your car actually needs. More so, in case of dealerships and garages not being an option at the time, we’d suggest you take extra care ahead.

All images: Courtesy Getty Images

Mikhail Gomes
Senior Features Writer
A watch aficionado, Gomes also enjoys learning about fine whiskies, and one day hopes to establish his own menswear label. At Lifestyle Asia India, he writes on watches, menswear, auto and tech.