By now, many are confined to the indoors. Across the country, people have been instructed to self-isolate, quarantine, and shelter in place. Unfortunately, leaving the house is sometimes inevitable. Many still need to go to work, to the store, or perhaps somewhere they are volunteering.
Which means that while the traffic may have temporarily disappeared, the need for cars hasn’t. Many still rely on their car to get around during this unprecedented time.
It goes without saying that this is probably one of the worst times to experience car problems. But cars don’t always have great timing when they start acting up. And they certainly are not aware of social distancing.
If your car has issues during the Coronavirus outbreak, here’s our advice for what you can do.
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Take It Slow
Not all car issues are urgent. If the air pressure in your tire is a bit low, or the stability control light comes on, for instance, your car is technically still safe to drive, albeit cautiously.
Of course, it’s always worth researching the issue online or giving us a quick call to gauge how safe your vehicle is to drive. But with minor issues, you can often continue to operate your vehicle if you drive it cautiously. It’s best to limit how far and how often you drive until you’re able to get your car checked by a professional.
A lot of car issues can be resolved by a simple DIY fix. If your car is running low on oil, for instance, you can add more oil yourself to make sure it’s well-lubricated. You can buy the oil that your owner’s manual suggests, simply pop the hood, open the oil cap (it will have the oil symbol on it), and add oil in small increments until the dipstick shows you have the correct amount. Unless you have a leak, in which case you should get your car checked by a professional, this simple task can hold you over until you are able to get a proper oil change performed.
If the air in your tires is low, you can go to a nearby gas station and use the air pump. The pump will have instructions on it, and the accurate pressure for your tires is usually indicated on the inside of the driver’s door or your owner’s manual. Just remember to be extra cautious when touching the pump. It’s best to wear gloves, if you have some available, and sanitize your hands immediately after using the pump.
Whatever issue your car is having, it’s worth researching and seeing if you can do it yourself for the time being, to limit human interaction during this time.
‘No-Contact Car Repair‘
While performing simple repairs at home or avoiding the need for repairs entirely is preferable, it’s not always possible. Your car might have a severe issue, and it might even break down. In order to keep your car running, you’ll need to get it repaired by a professional.
If that happens, the best thing to do is to hire a mobile mechanic to inspect and repair your car.
During the Coronavirus outbreak, we’ve put no-contact precautions into place with our technicians via our ‘No-Contact Car Repair’ policy. If you schedule a repair with AutoNation Mobile Service, our technicians will avoid direct contact during the appointment to ensure your safety as well as their own. You can leave your keys for them in a convenient location and handle all communication with them through your phone, including payment.
Additionally, our technicians will disinfect all high-touch surfaces in your car such as door handles and side panels, as well as all highly-used tools and equipment.
Practicing good hygiene and safety precautions are crucial during this time. If you have to drive somewhere, make sure you’re doing so responsibly.