Auto Systems and Repair: Scheduled Maintenance
When Do I Need Scheduled Maintenance?
When it comes to maintenance advice, you are often confronted with numerous recommendations and opinions. When the owners manual recommends one type of service, a quick lube franchise recommends a second, and the dealership advises a third, it’s no wonder you are afraid of being ripped off by paying for a service you don’t really need.
If you are in doubt, have no fear—the truth is in the owners manual. Manufacturers define maintenance schedules for your specific car and take into account "normal" and "severe" driving conditions.
Are You a "Normal" or "Severe" Driver?
You probably don't think the way you drive would fall under "severe" driving—most of us don't. But you are more likely to fall into this category if you:
- Take short trips of less than ten miles
- Drive in heavy traffic with many stops and starts
- Drive at high rates of speed
- Tow heavy loads or drive off-road
- Drive in dusty conditions
- Drive in extremely cold or extremely hot climates
If the above conditions are severe, then what’s normal?
- Trips of ten miles or more
- Sustained speeds of 50 to 75 miles an hour
- Driving in low-traffic situations with few stops and starts
- Ambient temperatures above freezing and below 95° F
To make informed decisions about your car’s maintenance schedule, determine what your priorities are. A mother with small children may make decisions based on safety, while a someone with a long commute may be concerned about fuel economy. Decide what's best for you!
Common Repairs and Services
- Air Filter Replacement
- Automatic Transmission Fluid Change
- Brake Fluid Replacement
- Cabin Air Filter Replacement
- Cooling System Coolant Change
- Fuel Filter Replacement
- Manual Transmission Fluid Change
- Spark Plug Replacement
- Throttle Body Service
- Timing Belt Replacement
- Tire Rotation
- Transfer Case Fluid Replacement
- Valve Adjustment
- Windshield Wiper Blade Replacement
- Oil Life Monitor Systems