Top 10 common causes of car breakdown

Car breakdowns can occur at any time throughout the year, any vehicle can break down for reasons other than those caused by winter.

Car breakdowns are more likely to occur during winter, but they can occur at any time throughout the year. During its natural life cycle, any vehicle can break down for reasons other than those caused by winter.

What is a vehicle breakdown?

The term "vehicle breakdown" refers to a mechanical failure in which the vehicle's current defect renders it practically impossible to operate.

The most common reasons for car breakdowns are

Faulty batteries are the major cause of car breakdowns in winter. The starter motor is powered by the battery, and the engine uses the alternator to recharge the battery.

Faulty/weak batteries:

When batteries are used more frequently, their efficiency decreases, and they eventually die after around 5 years. Excessive cold or heat, running a battery down or continually charging it will speed this process. This can be avoided by following the steps below:

  • Keep the battery terminals clean and free of corrosion. Battery terminal protectors can be made from petroleum jelly or even a little grease, although terminal protectors are available at most auto parts stores.
  • It is critical the top of the is kept battery clean and dry.
  • Take your car on a long trip now and then to ensure that your battery is properly charged.
  • Before attempting to start the engine, make sure all electrical equipment is turned off, including the lights, heating blower and rear defroster.
  • Examine the alternator belt regularly to ensure its kept at the proper tension.
  • If you detect any issues, such as slow starting or dim headlights, you should check the battery. Even if it hasn't caused any problems in the past, it is necessary to test it once a year.


Damaged Tyres and Wheels

Flat or worn tyres are similar to unwelcome guests that arrive at the wrong time. The majority of punctures are caused by sharp objects; however, there are other causes:

  • A tyre valve that has been broken or isn't working properly.
  • When a tyre hits a deep pothole or the edge of the pavement.
  • After an accident, the rim and tyre split.
  • The tyre’s tread was worn down.

Puncture prevention

You can prevent punctures or flat tyres by performing a few easy checks:

  • First, regularly inspect your tyres' tread depth and pressure, also check the spare wheel.

Wheel misalignment that causes uneven tyre wear can be fixed by taking your car to a tyre facility or having it serviced.

  • When transporting heavy loads, the tyre pressure must be adjusted so that the vehicle can handle the weight.
  • Puddles or potholes may have formed due to road damage and they should not be driven through.


Lost Keys

Assistance will be necessary to re-enter a car if you misplace your keys or lock them inside. It's a good idea to keep an extra key at home, but it's not helpful if you're on vacation.

Microchips are embedded in your vehicle keys to prevent theft. Unfortunately, if you lose your key, replacing it is more difficult. It's also why missing or jammed keys frequently cause vehicle breakdowns.

You can also contact someone for assistance or contact an authorized dealer.

Engine Oil Level

Engine oil that has been improperly topped up might cause damage to the engine. It's just as harmful to have too much as it is to have too little oil in your engine.

Here are some suggestions for avoiding engine oil issues:

  • Use the dipstick to check your engine oil regularly.
  • Ascertain that the two lines are at the same height.
  • To find out what oil standard your car requires, consult your owner's manual.


Your alternator may be failing if your battery is frequently draining or your headlights are dimming. It's also possible that the belt that drives your alternator and water pump has come undone. This is a red signal if the engine temperature suddenly rises and the ignition warning light lights.

Starter Motor

Starter motors inevitably fail, despite their extraordinary longevity.

Any possible problems can be addressed before they become a problem as long as your car is maintained regularly.

Wrong Fuel

Every year, thousands of drivers fill up with incorrect fuel. Do not start your automobile if you accidentally filled your diesel tank with gasoline or vice versa; instead, push it to a safe spot and call your fuel service team.

To avoid a bad gasoline scenario, check the nozzle on the pump before pulling the trigger.

Running out of fuel

Another fuel-related issue that causes the most embarrassment to drivers is running out of gas! The tank is low on fuel if the needle is red (or bleeps).

What to do in case of a fuel shortage

It's possible that the display isn't always correct. And there are chances that your car’s fuel gauge may not show the exact volume of fuel left.

If your tank has low fuel,

  • It is preferable to fill it fully now rather than later.
  • Before a long trip, top up your tank the day before.

Fuel has flooded the engine

You risk flooding the engine if you stop your automobile too soon after starting it in the cold. A flooded petrol engine, fortunately, is usually simple to repair.

The best way to avoid flooding your engine

Allow the engine to warm up after starting it from cold if you drive a petrol car. It only takes a few moments. As the engine warms up, the sound changes, and the idle speed decreases.

Worn out cables

If the clutch cable breaks, it will be impossible to engage the clutch, which will be a major problem.

The following indicators of clutch cable wear and tear can be identified:

  • When you press the clutch pedal, you feel a sense of tightness.
  • When shifting gears, a grinding noise can be heard.

Leaking Cylinder Gasket

Other than maintaining your cooling system to avoid the issue, it's tough to prevent a leaky cylinder gasket from developing.

The following are some of the most obvious indicators of a failing cylinder gasket:

  • The exhaust is producing white smoke.
  • There is less power available.
  • Refilling coolant or oil on a regular basis.
  • The coolant's oil is frothy, and the coolant's oil is foamy.

Ignition Problems

The wires carrying high voltage from the coil or distributor to the spark plugs may be thicker in older cars. In contemporary cars, the coil can also be seen right above the spark plug. Ironically, it deteriorates as it becomes older and hotter, causing a reduced performance.

An ignition problem can be identified by the following signs:

  • When driving uphill or boosting the accelerator, the engine will misfire.
  • In chilly temperatures, the engine has trouble starting.

Fouled Spark Plug

Only older autos and cars with a lot of kilometres on them might have this issue. Fuel fouling plugs happens when there is too much fuel in the engine and not enough air. Spark plugs should be replaced regularly, such as every 50,000 miles on current automobiles, to avoid this problem.

A clogged spark plug may exhibit one or more of the following symptoms:

  • When driving uphill or boosting the accelerator, the engine will misfire.
  • Trouble starting the car.
  • It's difficult to start the engine.

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All about Smart-Cover's Car Breakdown Cover

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The following are some of the benefits of Smart Covercar breakdown cover:

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Throughout the year, we provide assistance for numerous motor breakdowns around the clock. A motor vehicle breakdown can occur at any time, and we want you to feel secure knowing that you are covered.

Apply for Smart Cover's motor breakdown insurance today for a solution that's only a phone call away.

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