Cars are often some of the most expensive possessions that anyone can have, coming only second to houses, which is why it is important to maintain them properly to ensure optimal performance. Regular preventative maintenance is one of the best ways to ensure that your car serves you well.
What is Preventative Car Maintenance?
Preventative car maintenance is planned maintenance that’s designed to prolong the lifespan of a vehicle and minimize the risk of breakdowns. It is also referred to as preventive maintenance and it includes repairs, lubrication, cleaning, adjustments, and replacements.
Vehicle repairs are sometimes unavoidable, but regular preventive maintenance checks can help prevent expensive repairs in the future, saving you money in the process, and keeping your vehicle in good working condition as well as ensuring your safety and that of your passengers.
What Does Preventative Car Maintenance Entail?
Preventive car maintenance involves many different things. It is important to note that this list is far from exhaustive. Your mechanic or vehicle maintenance technician may recommend other forms of preventive maintenance not discussed here.
Here are some of the things that preventive car maintenance entails:
Regular Oil Change
An oil change is perhaps the first maintenance service that any car gets straight from the manufacturer. It is done when your new vehicle clocks about 500 miles. It is during this break-in period that multiple components of the engine start coming together. Tiny pieces of metal break off over time and mix with the engine oil. An oil change helps flush out debris thus keeping the engine working optimally.
The transmission is probably the most expensive component of your vehicle with regards to repairs. If there’s no transmission, the engine would be unable to covert the power it produces to the wheels to get them to move. To avoid transmission related problems, therefore, you need to schedule regular transmission checks.
Battery Maintenance & Replacement
The battery plays an important role since without it, car engines cannot start. Batteries, however, have varying life spans ranging from 12 to 24 months. You shouldn’t have to wait until your car stops running due to a dead battery before replacing it. Car batteries usually come with warranties, so have them replaced as soon as the warranty expires is always advisable.
Your car uses several belts to run properly, including the timing belt, fan belt, power steering belt, and the drive belt. Belts, unfortunately, start wearing off after extensive use and if ignored, they may snap thus causing catastrophic damage to the engine. You can find belt change service information in the owner’s manual or by visiting your local car repair shop. A timing belt service, for instance, is required every 60,000 miles, but this may vary depending on your specific vehicle model and condition.
Highway accidents are often the result of faulty brakes. That’s why it is so important to have properly functioning brakes, Brakes are essential to you, your passengers, and other road users, which is why it is so important to schedule periodic brake inspection for your vehicle. Ideally, the brakes should be checked whenever you perform an oil change.
Tire Inspection and Care
Tires are made of rubber and eventually start wearing out after bearing the weight of the vehicle for thousands of kilometers. Brakes can also not function properly if you have worn out tires, and it can be very difficult to control your vehicle in wet conditions. To ensure that your tires last longer, rotate them after every 3,000 miles to even the effects of wear and tear. You should also inflate them to the exact pressure and only replace them according to manufacturer recommendations.
Why Is Preventative Car Maintenance Important?
A vehicle that lacks proper maintenance will not only put you and other road users at risk but also hurt your wallet. Preventative maintenance is of several different types as explained above. So, why is regular preventive maintenance important for your vehicle?
1. Reduced Repair Costs
Regular preventive maintenance is usually inexpensive, but the same cannot be said for unexpected repairs and replacements. The engine or even other components cannot fail without a reason. If you neglect maintenance, you will find yourself dealing with minor issues that can quickly become major with sustained neglect.
Regular preventive maintenance allows you to check whether there are any signs of minor issues such as leaks, cracks, or even excessive wear and tear caused by friction. If you pay attention to such things and perform the necessary repairs, that part would be saved and wouldn’t need a replacement for a long time.
Maintenance therefore extends the longevity of the engine along with other components thus reducing the need for early replacement and thus helps lower repair costs too.
2. Improving Fuel Mileage
If you visit an auto repair shop for regular preventive maintenance, you will improve your vehicle’s fuel mileage. If you don’t change the vehicle’s motor oil or engine air filter can negatively affect its fuel mileage. Ignoring maintenance accelerate the engine’s wear and tear.
It is advisable to perform a routine oil change every 3,000 miles. It can also be a good idea to get a complete suspension maintenance service every 15,000 miles to help achieve the vehicle’s optimal fuel efficiency.
3. Preventing Major Repairs
Major vehicle repairs are almost always the result of negligence of the owner. In most instances, major auto repairs such as engine and transmission failure can be avoided with regular preventive maintenance.
Preventive maintenance such as engine fluid replacement and oil changes can extend the life of the vehicle’s major systems. If you don’t change the fluids in your vehicle, you may end up stressing the engine thus causing it to malfunction.
4. Save Money and Stay Safe
It is much cheaper to replace your timing belt every 50,000 miles as opposed to rebuilding the engine after an engine bet snaps. Regular inspection and cleaning of the battery whenever you have an oil change can also go a long way, saving you from the embarrassment and danger of being stranded due to a dead battery.
A poorly maintained vehicle is prone to accidents, which are not only expensive but also pose a safety risk to you and other road users.
5. Avoid Future Inconvenience
After paying good money for your car, you expect it to get you wherever you want to go. Preventive maintenance keeps your car running smoothly and ensures that it does not let you down when you need it most.
Inconveniences that you may encounter without preventive maintenance include the battery dying after leaving the vehicle parked too long. Power windows locking up, AC and heat cutting off when you need to regulate your vehicle’s temperature, among many other issues.
Looking for a Trusted Provider of Preventative Vehicle Maintenance Services?
Do you require a professional preventative car maintenance service? HEART Certified Auto Care is a leading auto repair service that specializes in preventive car maintenance, oil changes, check engine light repairs, auto tune-up service, battery service, engine and transmission service and repair, clutch repairs, and many more.
Most of the services offered by HEART Certified Auto Care focus on specific areas of your vehicle, which may have a large impact on the overall performance. For a free quote, you need to get in touch with our team. Our trusted customer service representatives are more than happy to help. Keep in mind that regular maintenance of your vehicle is the best way to improve its functionality and increase its lifespan.