| Car Life
spooky ghost coming from front of car at night with woman in red coat

Which is scarier: Things that go bump in the night or things that go thump in your car? If the cat just knocked over a drinking glass, then the car noise probably wins. After all, car repairs don’t come cheap! And worse, some car problems are simply too dangerous to ignore, and could even kill your car. During Fall Car Care Month in October, keep your car up and running with the following Halloween-inspired tips on spooky things that could go wrong with your car.

Mysterious sounds.

Knocking. Banging. Rattling. Clicking. Popping. Tapping. Whining. Squealing. Those aren’t haunted sound effects; they’re your car telling you something is wrong. A part may need to be replaced, adjusted, tightened, or lubricated. Describe the sound to your mechanic by using the appropriate descriptive word, recreating the sound verbally, or visiting ClingClanger or Car Talk’s Car Noise Emporium to match the sound online.

Ghostly smoke from the engine.

Ominous fog may be fitting in a cemetery at night, but not for your car! To prevent smoke under the hood, regularly replace the air filter and check all fluids, including the engine oil, transmission fluid, and coolant. Inspect the exhaust system for leaks, damage, and broken parts, and ensure the engine is producing low emissions. Preventive maintenance will help keep your vehicle smoke-free, but if it can’t be avoided, your mechanic can help diagnose the problem.

Car trouble in a remote town.

A flat tire in the middle of nowhere, with no spare or sealant, is a situation no one wants to be in. After all, horror films have taught us that a “helpful” stranger on the side of the road could really be a chainsaw-wielding maniac, werewolf, zombie, or who-knows-what in disguise. In real life, you can get Roadside Assistance* with your insurance policy to help if your vehicle has mechanical problems while on the road. It’s not just tires either. You can get help with many kinds of road trip troubles like towing, lockouts, gas and fluid delivery, map services, thefts, and more — all for a fairly low cost.

A phantom driver.

Brake failure or a loss of power steering while on the road could turn your car into an out-of-control hell on wheels. To avoid feeling like a poltergeist has taken control of your car, inspect the brake system and steering and suspension system annually, and all related components. Plus, have the brake linings, rotors, and drums inspected at each oil change. Make it your preventive maintenance ritual!

Ready to prepare your car for fall and winter? We hope that didn’t spook you too much, but preventive maintenance helps ensure your safety, and the reliability of your vehicle, which is especially important in the event of severe weather. It’s also important to be prepared with the proper coverage. Call 1-877-DIRECT (1-877-463-4732), click, or come in to talk to an agent about our products and services, like roadside assistance, auto insurance, and emergency protection.

*Roadside Assistance and Emergency Protection Plans are through NationSafeDriver, Boca Raton, FL

*Roadside Assistance and Emergency Protection Plans are not insurance. Administered through NationSafeDriver, Boca Raton, FL