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The Glamour Girl’s Guide to unglamourous things

I’m proud to be an independent woman and will gladly say I can do anything just as well as a man can. However, I realize there are some things men are pros at that most women, myself included, know nothing about. Car maintenance seems to be one of those things. I don’t know how many times I’ve said if my car broke down or had a flat tire in the middle of nowhere, I wouldn’t know what to do. But prevention is the best medicine, and car problems can often be completely avoided by routine maintenance.

The engine is the heart of the car. In order to protect it, an oil change is needed about every 3,000 miles. To check the oil level, which is one of the easiest ways to protect a car, you have to locate the dipstick. Completely remove the dipstick, wipe it off with a paper towel or rag and put it back into the engine. Take it back out again and you should be able to get a reading. Most dipsticks have “full” and “low” marks. Check the owner’s manual to find out how many quarts of oil your engine holds. Add the needed amount of oil, being careful not to add too much.

With the price of gas rising by the day, one of the best ways to save at the pump is to check tires regularly. Under-inflated tires increase fuel consumption by 10 percent. According to, refer to your vehicle’s owner’s manual for the proper level of inflation; it may also be posted on the inside of the door frame or in the glove box. When checking the air pressure, make sure the tires are cool – meaning they’re not hot from driving even a mile. Remove the cap from the tire valve, firmly press a tire gauge onto the valve and note the reading. Add air to achieve recommended air pressure. If you overfill the tire, you can release air by pushing on the metal stem in the center of the valve with a fingernail or the tip of a pen. Then recheck the pressure with your tire gauge and replace the valve cap.

Finally, another easy maintenance check is the battery. Corrosion can shorten the life of a battery and cause stalling. According to, for the prevention of corrosion it is imperative that you clean the battery terminals regularly and apply a light coating of grease. Also, check the level of distilled water in the battery and ensure that the plates are covered at all times. If the water level is low, the acid becomes concentrated and the plates can become corroded.

These three steps can greatly improve the performance of a car and you will impress the boys by doing them. The beauty of being a glamour girl is you can make anything look glamourous, even car maintenence.