HP, PSI, and other acronyms every future car owner should know

There’s a lot you need to learn before getting behind the wheel
Jan 9, 2019
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Being a responsible car owner means you're not only concerned about your car's maintenance, but you also practice being a responsible driver-someone who follows traffic rules and is conscious about road safety. You should know how your car works and you can sense when it's not in tip-top condition. It involves more than listening to the sound of your engine running, or being able to change a flat tire.

While some automotive terms may be too technical, especially to first-time car buyers, there are a few terms you can easily pick up before you purchase your new wheels. Watch this video and learn a few common acronyms to get you started:

HP - Horsepower

Horsepower refers to how powerful an engine is. The higher the horsepower, the stronger the engine.

Horsepower is a standard unit of measurement that determines acceleration, top speed, and fuel consumption. If you're particular about how fast and strong an engine is, knowing a car's HP will make finding the ideal ride easier.


PSI - Pounds per Square Inch

Pounds per square inch is a unit of measurement used when inflating tires. To know the correct PSI of your tires, check your car's user manual.

Any responsible car owner would know the factory-determined PSI of his tires. You don't want to over- or under-inflate your tires-the right amount of air pressure will allow you to have a smooth and safe ride.

ABS - Anti-lock Braking System

If your car is equipped with ABS and you slam on the brakes in an emergency situation, the system will allow you to have more control over the brakes.

ABS is a safety emergency feature that should be a non-negotiable for car buyers.

FWD/RWD/AWD - Front/Rear/All-Wheel Drive

Engine power is delivered in any one of these three ways: through the front wheels, rear wheels, or through all four wheels.

The drivetrain of your car affects how the car moves, and consequently, how it should be driven.

CVT - Continuously Variable Transmission

Most modern cars have a CVT, which uses a system of pulleys and belts to transfer power instead of a traditional gearing system.

Car owners value the CVT because it allows the engine to run efficiently, in better fuel mileage.

OEM - Original Equipment Manufacturer

When you need to replace parts, you can get the same components that were fitted on your car when it was brand new. Just ask for OEM.

It is important to ask for OEM parts because these are the parts that are intended to be used for your vehicle. While it's tempting to get replacement parts that are cheaper, take our advice: Do not settle for anything less than OEM.

RPM - Revolutions Per Minute

RPM dictates how fast the crankshaft rotates in one minute. A higher RPM means the engine is working harder.

The harder you run the engine, the higher your RPMs will be. This affects everything, from engine wear and tear, to fuel consumption.

An unnaturally high RPM, while the car is idling, can also be a sign that something is wrong with your engine.

With your newly-acquired knowledge on basic automotive terms, you're now more ready to become the responsible car owner that you ought to be.

If you can imagine yourself behind the wheels and shifting gears to your destination, then it may be time to scout for options and finally buy the car you've always wanted.

And getting one is now easier with BDO Auto Loan. BDO offers financing packages with low rates and flexible payment terms. Processing is fast too-24 hours with complete application requirements.

See how BDO Auto Loan can help you. Visit any BDO branch near you or click here.

This article is created by Summit Storylabs in partnership with BDO Auto Loan.
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