Your car is an investment. For most of us, we expect our car to get us from Point A to Point B and back every day. You might use it for work, to transport your family to school or vacation and of course for those midnight grocery store runs. For some of you, your car is much more than a transportation source. It’s a collector’s item to be showcased. No matter what your car’s purpose is, it’s important that you inspect your car’s interior regularly to make sure you don’t have any major problems.

Here are the 5 areas you should be inspecting regularly (at least twice a year):

1. Controls and Accessories

As you inspect your car’s interior, be sure to test out every control. Don’t just assume that it’s all in working order. Some things we use often (like the radio or turn signals) while other functions may be used less frequently (like the sunroof). Be sure to check that everything is functioning as it should. Take care to listen for any noises that don’t sound quite right and if you hear something that is off, don’t ignore it.

2. Dashboard

Check to make sure the dashboard readings are all showing up clearly as well as look for any warning lights. If you aren’t sure what the warning lights mean, check your vehicle’s manual or take it to the nearest mechanic or auto parts store to ask someone.

3. Lights

Check that all of your lights are in proper working order. Don’t forget to check lights in the glove box and floorboard. While you’re at it, check that the headlights (daytime, highbeams, fog lights) are all working correctly and shining brightly.

4. What’s that smell?

Does your car have a smell? If you’ve got an air freshener, take it out while you inspect to make sure it isn’t covering up something warning you of a problem. If you smell a musty odor, you could have leaks or water damage which could be dangerous and costly.

5. Seats and Headlining

Make sure the headlining is secure all around. Over time, this can become loose and start to droop which could interfere with the driver’s vision posing a serious safety risk. Check your seats for rips and tears or areas where they are worn through. Torn seats can cause discomfort to drivers and passengers alike. However, a problem in the driver’s seat can mean a problem on the road.

It’s a good idea to make note of your inspection and keep a log. This way you can keep a record of your findings and any actions you take. Should you decide to sell the car, it could be helpful for the new owner to have plus they’ll see how well you cared for the vehicle.

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