Maintenance Advice

If you own a vehicle, routine maintenance is important. A properly maintained and operated vehicle will run more efficiently, safer, and can last considerably longer. Following our tips below will help keep your vehicle’s impact on the environment low and life long.

Due to varying requirements by manufacturer, always consult your owner’s manual for service and maintenance schedules.

  • Change the oil and filter every 3,000 - 4,000 miles
  • Check all fluids including:
    • Brake
    • Power Steering
    • Transmission/Transaxle
    • Windshield Washer Solvent
    • Antifreeze
  • Check tire pressure - under inflated tires can result in a loss of fuel efficiency
  • Keep your engine tuned with fully functioning spark plugs, ignition coils, and fuel injectors.
  • Have your vehicles chassis lubricated to extend the suspension system’s life.
  • Keep the battery cables clean any corrosion from the connections.
  • Check the lighting systems including:
    • Headlights
    • Taillights
    • Turn Signals
    • Brake Lights
  • Check windshield wiper blades for damage and replace accordingly
  • Inspect engine belts. Any wear can effect performance and immediately replace if cracks are found.
  • Check air filtration frequently for clogs or damage. Clear and consistent airways are imperative for your engine’s performance.

Weather Tips

Preparing your vehicle for winter is an intrinsic responsibility to keep you safe through the season. Cold temperatures and freezing precipitation takes a toll on your vehicle. Below you will find valuable advice on how to be ready for the winter season.

  • Place a bottle of fuel de-icer in your tank once a month to help keep moisture from freezing in the fuel line. Note that a full gas tank helps keep moisture from forming.
  • Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual—more often (every 3,000 miles) if your driving is mostly stop-and-go or consists of frequent short trips.
  • The cooling system should be completely flushed and refilled about every 24 months. The level, condition, and concentration of the coolant should be checked periodically.
  • Replace old windshield wiper blades and keep some extra wiper fluid on hand.
  • Keep an ice-scraper with you at all times.
  • Check your heating system and rear window defroster for comfort and visibility.
  • Before the cold weather rolls in, check battery cables and connections for cleanliness and corrosion. Keeping the batter and cables clean can save you and your vehicle.
  • Have the exhaust system checked for leaks.
  • Examine all tires for wear that will be an issue. Uneven wearing, cupping, remaining tread life, and any cuts or nicks in the sidewall can be hazards if present when driving in winter weather.
  • Keep emergency items such as: gloves, boots, blankets, flares, small shovel, sand/cat litter, a flash light, and some snacks in your vehicle. These things can be crucial if something happens to your vehicle.

Just as the cold weather has an impact on your vehicle’s performance, hot weather can be just as harmful. Our periodic maintenance tips below will lessen the odds of mechanical failure and lengthen the life of your automobile.

  • Have the air conditioning system examined by a qualified technician. Hot weather can have an impact on the operation of fans and filters.
  • The cooling system should be completely flushed every 24 months to avoid overheating and breakdown. If you do this at home, make sure to remove the radiator cap AFTER the engine is off and thoroughly cooled.
  • Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual—more often (every 3,000 miles) if your driving is mostly stop-and-go or consists of frequent short trips.
  • Replace the filters (other than the oil filter, unless the oil is being changed) as recommended - more often in dusty conditions. If you’re having drivability issues, such as hard starts, rough idling, stalling, reduced power, etc., bring your vehicle in to be examined and corrected.
  • If your windshield wipers are not cleaning your windows well, it may cause eye fatigue and make driving dangerous for you and others around you. Replace worn blades and make sure to keep washer fluid on hand and watch the levels within your car’s reserve.
  • Check all lights for burnt out or faulty bulbs. Replace any that are not working and periodically clean dirt and insects from the lenses.
  • Regularly check the tread on all of your tires for remaining tread life, cupping (usually multiple indentations caused by suspension problems), uneven wear, and cuts and nicks on the sidewalls. Have them rotated every 5,000 miles, check tire pressure at least once during a month after the car has not been driven for a while and the tires have cooled.
  • Brakes should be inspected as often as your manual suggests. If you notice pulsing, grabbing, tightness, loosening, unusual noises, or longer stopping distance, immediately bring your vehicle in to be inspected and corrected.
  • Battery care in the heat of summer is very important. Professional equipment is the only way to detect a weak battery, and we advise that you have it checked every 3-5 years. In addition, if you use your vehicle mainly for short trips (less than 20 minutes of driving), the alternator is not able to provide a full charge and will reduce battery life.
  • For emergency situations, store a first aid kit, flares and a flashlight.
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