Regular maintenance is the best way to keep your car running properly and at its best. There are two ways to help to reduce your chances of breaking down - first is to stick to the manufactures advice on servicing. In your vehicle handbook it will tell you when your next car service is due - so make sure you book yours.
The second is to do your own simple car maintenance checks:
It is recommended that every 2 weeks you check your tyre pressure (the recommended amount can be found in your vehicle handbook) and the condition of the tyres - this would include the spare tyre. Also you need to make sure that the tyre tread is within the legal limits.
If you car has a spare wheel it is always a good idea to carry any wheel removing tools as well as a jack.
Before and after long journeys check your oil level - you can do this by using the dipstick and then top it up if it is needed.
To help to prevent smears on your windscreen, replace your windscreen wipers once every year.
The law states that the screenwash system in your car must work. So make sure that you regularly keep it topped up.
If you spot any chips or cracks on your windscreen make sure that you can get them repaired as soon as possible - they can begin to grow if not. If the damage is that bad it can't be repaired or it is in a place where it can distract you, your windscreen may need to be replaced.
All of your lights should be working on your car. This would include: indicators, reversing lights, brake lights and fog lights. Check them weekly for blown bulbs, cracks or dirty lenses - after all there are needed for a reason.
Occasionally check your car panels for any damage or signs of rust.