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Truth Behind Common Car Myths

Most people drive. Just because we can drive, it doesn’t mean we know everything there is to know about our cars. Some of what we may believe to be true may be false due to misunderstandings or outdated information. We have assembled a few of the most common car myths. Check them out below:

  1. You need to change your oil every 3,000 miles.

    This was the old standard for oil change intervals. With changes to the engine design of modern cars, this no longer holds true. You should consult your car’s owner’s manual or the manufacturer for recommendations. Some cars can go as far as 10,000 miles until an oil change is needed. Especially when using synthetic, your car can go for 5,000 miles or more.

    Oil change intervals depend on the following:

    • Type of oil – Many cars nowadays utilize synthetic or synthetic blend, which lasts longer.
    • Type of vehicle (make/model/year) – How often you need to change your oil will depend on a combination of how old the car is and what type of oil it takes.
    • Driving habits – You might need to change your oil more often if your driving habits are less typical. This includes driving off-road, carrying heavy loads (towing), and making frequent short trips.
  2. Premium fuel makes your car run better.

    If your car does not require premium fuel, then do not use it. It will save you money. You need to know if it is recommended or required. Thanks to Edmunds, there is a list that tells you which vehicles 2011 and newer are required versus recommended. Check out the list before switching. Double check with your trusted mechanic if you are considering switching to regular. Premium gas is higher in cost than regular, because it contains a higher percentage of octane. Premium gas is also often used in high-performance engines. Likely, you won’t see any performance differences by switching. However, it is best to consult with your manufacturer or trusted auto technician prior to doing so. It is not a good idea to switch to regular if your car requires premium gas. You do not want any potential problems.

  3. Red cars are targeted.

    There is a common misbelief that if you drive a red car you are more likely to get pulled over. This is because the color red is associated with sports cars, and sports cars go fast. However, there is no hard proof for this. It is also said that because of this, it costs more to insure a red vehicle. When getting auto insurance, the company will ask for the make and model of the vehicle. Color is not a relevant factor. What does factor into your likelihood of getting pulled over are driving behaviors. Some driving behaviors, such as speeding and texting while driving, are not only dangerous but will lead to tickets. Cars do not get tickets on their own. Drivers get tickets.

  4. You need to warm up your car.

    Unless you are the owner of a classic model, there is no need to warm up your car for the sake of the engine. On a cold day, all you will be doing is warming the interior of the vehicle. In the past, carburetors needed several minutes to warm up, so the car would run smoothly. If it was not warmed up, stalling may occur. On a snowy day in the middle of winter, there is no need to warm up the engine. Just clear off the windshield, and you’re good to go. However, take it easy. You do not want to lay on the gas as soon as you start your car.

  5. Driving a convertible is more dangerous.

    Convertibles, especially modern day ones, are safer than you may think. Although there is no roof in comparison to their sedan counterparts, they do relatively well in crash tests. Some models have standard electronic stability control, which helps drivers avoid accidents. If the car were to become unstable, some models feature reinforced windscreen frames and rollover bars. The most important thing to remember when driving any kind of vehicle is safety. Wear your seat belt, in case an accident were to occur.

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