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Everything is possible with regular car maintenance. Keeping up on preventive maintenance doesn't only extend the life and performance of your vehicle and cut fuel consumption, it lets you catch problems early and save yourself the headache of an expensive auto repair service later.
Perry Automotive breaks down what to do with easy-to-follow, car care tips.
Oil Change: Change oil within the suggested service intervals. Checking and changing your motor oil and oil filter helps your engine and vehicle run smoothly. While changing your oil as required is important, using the manufacturer’s recommended grade of oil can improve gas mileage by 1-2%.
Lubrication: Moving components require regular lubrication and should be checked as often as the oil is changed. Driveline components, like CV and u-joints, are flexible components that, if not properly lubricated, can break down and cause other major components to go with them.
Transmission & Differential Fluid: Transmission and differential fluid are important fluids to check during service intervals. Unusual noises, sluggish shifting, or abrupt gear changes are all signs that your transmission service interval is quickly approaching or has passed. Consult your owner’s manual for your manufacturer’s recommended transmission fluid type and viscosity.
Car Battery: Pay attention to battery life. Battery connections should be kept tight, clean, and free of corrosion. Batteries rarely provide warnings before failing, so seek battery replacements as necessary.
Brake Fluid: Brake fluid can attract moisture, which corrodes components. Check your owner's manual for recommended brake fluid replacement intervals. Brake fluid keeps calipers, hoses, and other components in top operating condition. Also check the power steering fluid and coolant. Each fluid has its own service interval, so be sure to check with the manufacturer.
Climate Control System: Fully functioning climate control systems are important to your comfort and your overall safety. A complete flush and fill of the coolant system is necessary for ridding the system of dirt and rust collected from the engine, radiator, and various hoses. Refrigerant may also be checked prior to the onset of warmer seasons.
Wheel Alignment: A wheel alignment fixes the angles of your wheels to your manufacturer’s specifications. Wheel alignments improve straight-line tracking and reduce tire wear. If you feel unusual pulling to one side, it's time for a wheel alignment.
Driving: Avoid stop-and-go driving when possible. This wastes fuel and adds unnecessary wear and premature age to crucial components.
Tire Rotation: Rotate your tires every 6,000 miles or every 6 months.
Tire Inflation: Check your tire pressures approximately once a month. Low tire pressures can affect fuel economy, handling and comfort. To accurately measure your tire pressure, check tires when they are cold. Wait at least three hours after driving.
Wheel Alignment: Always make sure that your wheels are properly aligned. Badly aligned wheels will again lead to dragging of the car on the road.
Spare Tire Care: Check your spare tire each month and keep it properly inflated so it¹s ready to go when you need it most.
Tire Tread Check: Use the penny trick to determine if the tread on your tires is worn to low. Take a penny and put Abraham Lincoln's head into one of the grooves of the tread. If part of his head is covered by the tread, you're ok. If you can see all of his head, it's time to replace the tire. When the tread is worn down to 1/16 of an inch, tires must be replaced.
Air Filter: Check and/or change your air filter every 6 months to improve fuel economy and keep your engine running smoothly.
Gas Tip: Don't bother topping off when filling your car's gas tank. Any additional gas is just going to slop around or seep out.
Gas Cap: Tighten up that gas cap. Gas will evaporate from your car's gas tank if it has an escape. Loose, missing or damaged gas caps cause 147 million gallons of gas to evaporate each year.
Parking: Go for the shade. The hot summer sun that makes the inside of your car feel like a sauna also evaporates fuel from your gas tank.
Motor Oil: Use the right oil. You can improve your car's gas mileage by 1 percent to 2 percent by using the manufacturer's recommended grade of motor oil.
By following these tips and the service intervals listed inside your owner’s manual, you can guard against major repairs and unexpected failures. Proper vehicle maintenance can save you money in the long run, and improve your safety and the safety of your passengers, while neglecting suggested services at regular intervals will void vehicle and parts warranties.
Stay on top of routine vehicle maintenance and visit us today or contact us online when your vehicle needs to be serviced by our professionals.