Get in the habit of sizing her up when you approach: tire pressure and tread, window visibility, etc. Listen so you know what sounds are normal and what sounds are new.
But also do things more systematically:
Check the tire pressure and oil on a schedule (or triggered by something like filling up with gas). During regular oil changes I think they typically rotate your tires and check all the other fluids, so don’t skip that appointment.
I know a lot of people with chipped or cracked windshields; a few pieces of advice:
- It’s actually not that expensive to have a mobile glass repair person come and fix chips/stars that are smaller than the size of a quarter. And often the price will be flat, no matter how many need fixing.
- Replacing your windshield isn’t nearly as expensive as basically any other exterior repair. If you’re in the Bay Area, I recommend Fast Mobile Auto Glass in Oakland.
- Often car insurance will have a normal deductible and also a special one just for your windshield/”glass”. (So instead of needing to first hit your $1k deductible, you only have to pay $100 and they’ll cover the rest of the cost of the replacement.)