The 4 most common reasons for car break downs

car break down
Photo: AndreyPopov, Bigstock

Experiencing a car break down is an inconvenience that every car owner wishes to avoid. Dealing with a car break down has the potential to ruin your day, stress you out and, mess up your monthly budget.

So, what can you do to ensure that your car runs smoothly, without leaving you stranded on the road? Well, the long-term solution would be to know the potentially problematic areas and make sure they are taken care of.

Here’s a list of the most common reasons for car break downs and what you need to do to avoid them:

Battery failure

A flat battery is easily the most common cause of a break down. If you tend to use your car only for short rides within the city, with a lot of braking, stopping and starting, you run the risk of draining your battery.

The best way to avoid this from happening is to take your car on a long drive, during a nice sunny day (so you won’t have to use the lights, the wipers or the heater). Doing this will give the battery a chance to recharge.

Another common reason for a dead battery is leaving the lights on overnight, which will quickly drain the battery. To ensure that your battery is in a good condition, give your car for regular service and be sure to double-check with them about whether they looked at the batteries.

Tyre trouble

Of course, it comes as no surprise that the second most common reasons that car owner’s call for assistance is due to a flat or damaged tyre. Tyre damage can happen gradually, over a period of time, making it difficult to notice. But it should be anticipated and precautions taken to prevent it.

After all, your car is going to be driving over potholes, uphill lanes, unpaved roads and whatnot on a frequent basis. Some wear and tear is to be expected.

Here’s a quick list of things to check on a regular basis if you want to avoid having a flat tyre. Number one is to check the tyre tread and pressure. Do this frequently to ensure your tyres are functioning on an optimal level.

Next, look out for any damage to the tyre wall. Foreign objects, such as nails and sharp stones, can get stuck in the tyre, leading to a flat.

Spark plug woes

Spark plugs work by generating a spark, which ignites the fuel and air in the engine—which in turn results in the pistons moving up and down. When spark plugs wear out, they need to be replaced.

The best way to avoid a spark plug issue is to give your car for regular service, where they will ensure that the spark plug is in perfect working condition.

Clutch cable breakage

Every time you change gear, you rely on the clutch cable. The life span of the clutch depends on your driving style. Some people tend to be a little to heavy-footed with the clutch.

Over-usage can lead to the clutch cables getting worn out. The tricky part with clutch breakage is that there might not be any warning signs or symptoms. Your clutch is working fine one moment, and then it’s not.

The best way to tackle this is by being proactive and having your car serviced frequently. You can also prolong your clutch cable’s life span by changing your driving etiquette. Learn to use the clutch only when necessary. Doing this will also help you get more mileage from your fuel.

Although not a break down issue per se, one of the other most common reasons that car owners call for assistance is because of lost or locked-in keys. With such a scenario, having a spare key stored somewhere safe can be the best quick fix. If not, you can get in touch with the main dealers for a replacement.

A car break down is something that every car owner dreads. The last thing you need when you’re on your way to that important meeting or on a weekend trip with your family is to have your car break down.

But, if you’re organised and regular with having your car serviced and checked out by mechanics regularly, you have a very high possibility of avoiding such untimely car trouble.