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The Most Common Reasons for a Car Break Down

Mechanic looks under the hood of a car, taking notes of what needs to be done.

May 13, 2019. Almost everyone experiences their car breaking down eventually, but do you know what causes a car break down?

Here are the top 6 reasons for a car break down

  1. Getting locked out of your car is a common roadside assistance call. Make sure you have at least 2 sets of keys.
  2. A dead battery isn’t unusual and batteries don’t normally last more than 3 or 4 Canadian winters. They don’t usually stop working without some warning, so if you suspect your battery needs replacing, look into it before you may be stranded on the side of the road.
  3. Getting a flat tire is another common reason for roadside assistance calls. Always have a spare and make sure it’s in good condition. Keep a jack with your spare tire and make sure never to put it on a soft surface, like gravel, if you’re going to change the tire yourself.
  4. Fuel problems or running out of gas are common. If you’re out of gas, try moving the vehicle side to side to move any remaining fuel to the fuel pump pickup. Fuel pump failures are also common with older vehicles.
  5. Alternator or starter problems will cause your car not to start. If the battery light comes on your dash, turn off unnecessary accessories to conserve power and head to a service station. If nothing but a click happens when you try to start the car that means that the starter has failed.
  6. Oil problems will get you stuck on the side of the road and there isn’t a whole lot you can do about it when your engine seizes from a lack of oil.

How to help avoid breakdowns

Regular car maintenance will go a long way in preventing car breakdowns.

  • Get your car serviced at the recommended intervals
  • Get regular oil changes
  • Test your battery and replace it every few years
  • Get extra keys made
  • Make sure your dashboard warning lights work and don’t ignore them when they come on
  • Check oil and fluid levels regularly

Get anything suspicious, like a strange noise, checked out