Cars are one of the most costly purchases a person makes in their lifetime. They are also one of the most important purchases we make. We depend on them to get us from point A to point B. But not only do we depend on them getting us from A to B, we depend on them to keep us safe during our travels. In order to keep your car operating as efficiently and as long as possible, it’s important to give your car proper care. We all hear about best practices for keeping our vehicle in good shape, however some suggestions are not necessarily true, and they could end up costing you extra time and money in the long run. Here are 3 common car care myths to avoid when taking care of your vehicle:

  1. Getting your vehicle worked on at an unauthorized or independent repair shop will void your vehicle’s warranty.

The warranty on your vehicle is valid until the expiration date. It is not affected if you service your vehicle at a shop other than the dealership. This myth mainly comes from dealerships' desire to keep customers coming back to them. Dealerships often say that you can only go to them for repairs, however requiring you to do so is illegal. As long as the maintenance specified in your owner’s manual was done according to the prescribed schedule, it should not void any warranty. Any maintenance covered under your warranty can also be performed by any auto repair shop. Make sure to save your receipts to prove what was done and how much it cost. The only time you MUST take your vehicle to a dealership is to have recall work performed.

2.    Wash your vehicle with laundry or dish soap

It may seem like a good idea to save money by using laundry or dish soap to wash your vehicle, but doing so can actually damage the car’s wax finish. Vehicles come from the factory with a protective layer of wax designed to keep your paint lasting a long time. Using anything other than soap designed specifically for the exterior of vehicles could contribute to paint chipping off. It’s definitely worth the extra money to buy a car-wash liquid that is designed to not strip away the protective wax.

3. Your vehicle battery will be fully recharged after a jump start

Oftentimes, vehicles need to be driven for several hours after it has been jump started in order to give the battery a full charge, especially in colder temperatures. There are a lot of accessories including the radio, heated seats, and lights that draw a lot of power from the alternator which leaves little left for recharging the battery. Short drives will most likely still leave you with a dead battery the next time you try and turn on your car.