What to expect when servicing your car
Getting your car serviced is a very important part of owning a vehicle. The average car on the road these days is over 11 years old, and older cars definitely need to be checked out and tuned up more often than others in order to decrease the risk of massive repair costs. Even though some parts replacements and breakages are inevitable, getting your car serviced is a sure-fire way to detect problems early and generally increase driver safety.
When you get your car, even if it's used, it should come with a manual and a schedule for servicing and inspections. If it doesn't, you can contact the car dealership or even the manufacturer to learn how often you should service your particular car based on its make, model, and production year.
In general, however, car servicing entails the same basic checks. Here's an idea of what to expect when you take your car in for servicing:
Engine oil drained and replaced. If your car's engine requires a special blend or type of oil, tell your mechanic before they begin.
- Replacement of oil filter
- Inspection of timing belt, which may need to be replaced because of mileage or age
- Inspection of coolant cap seals, radiator condition, coolant hoses, and condition and tension of fan or alternator belt
- Lubrication of steering and suspension
- Replacement brake fluid and bleed system
- Adjustment tire pressure and set wheel nut torque to manufacturer's settings
- Alignment of wheels
- Full inspection of brakes, brake pads, and steering
There are some other checks that may need to be made, as well, depending on a part's wear and the time of the year. For instance, you'll need new wiper blades after about six months or a year of use, and rotating your tires should be done annually. Getting your car serviced should be worked into your schedule far ahead of time so you never forget — it'll save you money in the long run. You can improve gas mileage by up to 4% on a proper tune-up, so head over to your local auto repair shop for regular engine maintenance and quality automotive service.