The internet now presents DIY solutions for all kinds of problems, often delivered through mediums such as YouTube and article resources (like this!). But in the world of motoring, it's often safer to leave certain jobs to the professionals, both in the interests of safety, and of avoiding large repair bills because your own DIY fix didn't quite work - and may have made the situation worse.
Of course there are some tasks that are straightforward to accomplish for most motorists - such as changing oil, flat tyres, spark plugs, batteries, headlights, and even wipers.
But there are some repair jobs that must be completed to a high standard in order to assure safety for you, your passengers, and other road users. Here are five of those critical tasks...
Braking systems have become ever more complex, so attempting a DIY fix on a newer car is a real challenge. Special training is needed to replace brake pads and rotors on newer vehicles. Even if your car is older and simpler, it will give you more peace of mind knowing a professional has completed the job for you.
While modern combustion engines essentially work as they did in the early 1900s, a number of bells and whistles have been added, mostly with a view to (substantially) improving fuel efficiency and performance. Fuel injection, turbo chargers, and, not least, vehicle management systems, have all made engine problems more difficult to diagnose and fix. You'll save yourself a lot of time and hassle if you call in the professionals.
It's just a piece of glass, right? Wrong. To install a new windshield safely and effectively, you need the right tools and adhesives. A poorly fitted windshield could mean you need to replace it again in just a year or so. Getting it done by a pro could well save you money and hassle - and it may be the safer option, too.
Perhaps more than any other essential part of a car, the gearbox has evolved to become incredibly complex. Only those with a deep understanding of how a given transmission works should attempt a repair. In addition to special training and knowledge, particular equipment is also required for a repair. In other words, your local garage will get the job done quickly, effectively and safely.
Replacing an airbag requires the removal of the entire dash, as well as special tools. Even if you did follow an online how-to guide, you would have no way of knowing if your new airbag system actually worked properly. Given that an airbag could save your life or that of a loved one, you're better off getting a trained mechanic to do it.