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Keeping your car in good condition is an important part of maintaining your transportation. You should tune your car up regularly. You can do it yourself, if you know what you're doing, or you can certainly hire a professional to do it. Regardless, here are some things that should be done under the hood of your car at least once a year.

Check the oil. Remove the dipstick and wipe it clean. Then stick it back in and remove it again. If it is low, add oil. You should change your oil every 3,000 miles.
Check your transmission fluid. Do this while your engine is running and with your parking brake on. Shift to drive then park, remove the dipstick, wipe it, put it back in and remove it again. If you need to add fluid, do so. Check your transmission fluid every month.
Check your air filter. Replace it when it's dirty. Do this every two months.
Check your brake fluid. Wide your brake lid clean, pull off the clip and remove the lid. If you need fluid, add the correct type and check for leaks throughout your system. Check your brake fluid ever month.
Inspect your hoses and belts in your engine. You need to replace any belts that are the least bit frayed, because that means they likely won't last much longer. You need to tighten your new belts so there isn't more than ½ inch of slack.
Check your antifreeze level. In many cars you can see inside the antifreeze tank. You want to fill it up to the line that is marked on the tank. It needs to be a mix of half antifreeze, half water.
Check your power steering fluid. Remove the dipstick. If you are low on power steering fluid, add fluid and make sure there aren't any leaks in your pumps and hoses.
Check your windshield wiper fluid. You should keep this reservoir as full as you can.