Emergency roadside service provider AAA has released new data that shows that approximately 32 million drivers called for assistance in 2015. This number is an all-time high, despite vehicle technology advances that aim to reduce breakdowns. AAA has uncovered key findings that help to explain why this is occurring and offers breakdown prevention advice.
New vehicle designs have caused unintended consequences for car manufacturers. For example, new keyless ignition systems often drain battery life when keys are kept too close to the ignition. This can ultimately cause battery failure, which is one of the most common issues that AAA’s roadside assistance team sees.
Furthermore, automakers are beginning to use more low profile tires on vehicles and are often eliminating spares. This combination can result in tire issues that drivers may not be able to solve on their own.
Drivers Pushing the Limit
Technology advances have given drivers more knowledge about vehicle issues than ever before. However, a lot of motorists are using this information to push limits that they may not have done in the past. This is especially true when it comes to fueling vehicles, as some drivers are now using range estimators and low fuel warning alerts instead of more reliable alternatives.
While technology has given motorists more knowledge than ever before, it should not be used as a substitute for routine car maintenance. Drivers should have their batteries, tire pressure, and fluid levels checked according to their manufacturer's recommended maintenance schedule. Neglecting to do this may result in a breakdown if your car does not alert you to an issue in time.
Ways to Prevent Breakdowns
Although motorists do not have complete control to avoid car breakdowns, they can take certain steps to help prevent them. AAA recommends actions such as:
- Having your battery tested when it reaches three years old and every year thereafter.
- Checking tire pressure at least once a month to ensure proper inflation.
- Purchasing a vehicle with a spare tire included, or buying one as an option.
- Taking special care of your "smart keys" and always remembering to take them with you when exiting your vehicle.
- Carrying extra supplies such as jumper cables, foam tire sealant, and a basic tool set that may enable you to drive your vehicle to a mechanic.
Purchasing a Newer Car
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