Some of the parts found under the hood of a car include the battery, engine, air filter, belts, hoses, oil filter, power steering fluid and windshield washer fluid. To ensure all parts and components under the hood are working efficiently, routine preventative maintenance is recommended.
The owner's manual of a vehicle diagrams the parts found under the hood of a car and offers instructions on how to properly check fluid levels and the different components of the engine. If the engine has been running for a while there may be areas beneath the hood that are extremely hot to the touch. Other than a transmission fluid check, it's best to do all fluid checks when the engine is off.
Preventative maintenance for most automobiles includes changing the oil, filling up and checking fluid levels, changing the air filter and adding power-steering fluid as needed. Certain parts underneath the hood should be checked every week, such as the antifreeze and coolant levels, while others should be checked every month, including belts, hoses and brake fluid. There are some preventative maintenance tasks that motorists can complete on their own and others that should be left to an experienced and reputable ASE-certified technician.