Why Perform Preventative Maintenance?

Why Perform Preventative Maintenance

Oil changed every 2,000 – 3,000 miles depending on driving habit. If you do a lot of short trip driving change your oil more often (2000 miles). If you drive mainly highway miles and more than 20 miles each time you start your engine then you can get by with 3000 mile intervals. Engine oil loses its ability to maintain it viscosity over time. It also gets lower in ph as moisture and combustion gasses mix with it. Lower ph means it gets corrosive and can eat away at bearings, seals and gaskets. Short trips accelerate this process. Use good premium motor oil!

Drain and fill cooling system every 2 yrs. or 30,000 miles whichever comes first. Antifreeze turns acidic as it breaks down, which produces an electrical charge in the cooling system. This eats away at the aluminum surfaces of the intake manifold or cylinder head. This in turn gives you premature head gasket and intake gasket failure. It also can clog radiator and heater core.

Replace fuel filter every 15,000 – 25,000 miles. Clogged fuel filters can prematurely burn out fuel pumps. Price varies per vehicle on fuel pumps, but run from $100.00 to 400.00 plus labor. At that price it is easy to see why replacing fuel filter is important. Also note, try not to run fuel under 1/4 of a tank. Most pumps are in the gas tank and run cooler with fuel above 1/4 tank. This also helps to extend the life of you fuel pump. This also helps keep the screens in the injector clean. Use only the fuel grade recommended for your engine. This is usually 87 octane. Don’t be tempted to use higher octane (or premium) fuel unless you drive a car that requires it. Higher octane fuels cause valves, piston rings and fuel injectors to gum up. It also makes the engine harder to start when cold because it is not as volatile.

Transmission service every 30,000 miles. Reason: Transmission fluid also breaks down and turns to an acid base, which eats away and hardens the rubber seals and o rings in the transmission and valve body. When these o rings get hard, especially in cold mornings, you lose fluid pressure to the clutches, which tend to slip and burn. This causes premature transmission burn out. By keeping the fluid clean most transmissions can go 200,000 miles or more. Most transmissions hold 12 to 14 quarts of fluid. When you do a service you only get 4 to 6 quarts out of the transmission pan. This is why at 60,000 we run 14 quarts through the system, to get all the fluid out.

Spark plugs at 30,00 – 60,000.

Don’t be mislead by the 49.95 tune up specials (click here for more on tune ups): Most vehicles do not need spark plugs until 30,000 to 60,000 miles depending on the type of plugs used from the factory. If you have an engine with aluminum heads you should change your spark plugs every 30,000 miles or they can galvanize themselves to the head and be nearly impossible to remove. At 30,000 we perform a throttle body cleaning, check plugs and replace if needed, replace pcv valve and air filter also if needed. Check computer system for codes, check belts. We also check timing if applicable. Check idle specs and replace fuel filter. Inspect distributor cap and rotor if equipped.

We also test your oxygen sensor (O2 sensor) performance. We test these with a lab scope. I recommend at 60,000 to replace O2 anyway. They may still work but they switch way to slow around this mileage. Most 02’s get slow and this effects fuel economy. This will also help keep your catalytic converter from overheating and burning up prematurely. The O2 sensor is a sensor which the computer uses for fuel trim. (economy)

Flush brake fluid every 2 years or 30,000 miles. The reason for this is brake fluid absorbs water which deteriorates the electric solenoids in the ABS system along with wheel cylinders and calipers. When brake fluid gets hot the water in the system boils and creates an air pocket which gives you a low brake pedal and reduced braking. With the high price of today’s sophisticated brake system components this is very cheap insurance against what could turn in to thousands of dollars worth of hydraulic brake system damage.

Power steering. If you want your steering rack to last longer, especially GM vehicles, flush system every 30,000 miles. This will help keep the power steering pump and steering rack in good shape. These also have rubber o rings just like transmissions.

Drain & fill differentials every 30,000 – 40,000 miles and transfer case of 4 wheel drives. This will help eliminate condensation and get rid of metal particles floating in the oil which ruins the bearings and seals.

Repack wheel bearings, where applicable every 30,000 to 40,000 depending on vehicle. Adjust rear brakes and clean the linings. Rear drum brakes should last between 50,000 and 80,000 miles if adjusted properly. Proper adjustment in the rear brakes can make the front disc brakes last longer also.

Also at 60,000

I would recommend high pressure fuel injection cleaning. Top cylinder carbon cleaning and throttle body cleaning. Remove and test EGR valve (exhaust gas recirculation valve) and clean carbon from passageway and valve. This helps eliminate engine ping or knock, improves fuel mileage substantially and helps eliminate a lean running engine, which can cause severe damage and also can improve power and performance of an engine.

60,000 miles we suggestreplacing ignition wires due to high resistance which burn out ignition coils. On a GM vehicle I would replace the wires closer to 50,000 and Chrysler products every 30,000 miles.

60,000 flush cooling system and replace thermostat. Thermostats can go bad with no tell tale sign. Sometimes they stick open or open to soon. The computer looks at engine temperature. If the temperature is to low the computer will keep the engine running richer than it should. The computer thinks the engine is still cold. This dilutes oil and carbons engine and adds to the clogging of the catalytic converter all prematurely. It also effects automatic transmission. The transmission has a lock-up clutch that won’t engage if engine temperature is under 170 degrees for most vehicles. Also some over-drives won’t shift into 4to gear. The other reason is if the thermostat doesn’t open you overheat. Which when you realize it, it may be too late. I think it’s a very cheap insurance policy to replace the thermostat & gasket.