Auto Maintenance Guideline To Keep Your Vehicle In Shape

You might have been familiar with the regular old saying “Change your engine oil every 3000 miles”.  And if your headlight is fading out, change them right away! But, do you know when you should change the batteries and cables or check the transmission fluid? If you are going to answer “Yes! When something goes wrong”, then take our words, you are not alone in this. The only key to keep your vehicle moving well-today down the road is by following routine maintenance. But, why do you need regular maintenance? It can help to increase your vehicle’s life and save money on repairs. The first and best guide is the owner’s manual. They can provide you with information as to how to change tires, timing belts, battery cables, etc. Also, you can find these auto body parts at an affordable price at PartsAvatar.

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Maintenance Schedule

Many vehicle manufacturers would usually prefer a 30-60-90 maintenance schedule, which means a few auto parts have to be inspected, replaced and completely changed at 30,000, 60,000 and 90,000 miles. Few auto parts like car tires, hoses, windshield wiper blades, etc need periodic check else they will wear out quickly. This article is going to help you with the auto repair services you should consider after certain miles.

Auto Maintenance Part
Mileage or Time
 Oil and Oil Filter 
4800 km or 3 months.
Air Filter & Fuel Filter
24,000 - 48,000 km.
80,000 - 96,000 km or 4-5 years.
Transmission Fluids
48,000 - 96,000 km.
Spark Plugs
140.000 km.
Timing Belt & Serpentine Belt                 
120,000 km or 5-8 years.
Windshield Wiper9000 km or 6 months.
9000 km or every other oil change.
Cooling System 
Every 80,000 - 100,000 km.
10,000 km or while checking or changing oil.
450 - 1000 hours.
Catalytic Converter
160,000 km.
Water Pump90,000 - 140,000 km.

Check Your Oil and Oil Filter

Have you checked your engine oil yet? One of the standard maintenance of any car is to check the oil filter and engine oil. Tiny bits of metals, dirt, carbon gets accumulated in the oil filter and can damage the engine. Similarly, oil is your engine’s lifeblood which has the power to destroy the engine. Don’t blindly follow the 3000 miles oil change as few cars can last up to 5000 – 10,000 miles, depending on the type of oil that is used. Check both the oil and oil filter at frequent intervals and make sure the engine functions efficiently

Replace Your Air Filter & Fuel Filter

Your engine needs to breathe clean air just as you do. Replace the clogged air filter, as it can cause more damage to your engine. One good rule to check the fuel filter and air filter is after every 15,000 and 30,000 miles. Get a pressure test done to check the health of your fuel filter. So, whenever you check your oil and oil filter make sure to check your air and fuel filter too. 

Looking After The Batteries

Idle car battery? Replace them here. As it can get easily affected. Batteries can easily wear out as they are prorated and have a certain period of warranty. Batteries can last up to four-five years which means you can drive around 50,000 – 60,000 miles. So if you find any erosion or if your batteries are leaky, then it’s high time you replace them. It’s always best to a new battery in your trunk. Looking for hassle-free shopping? Then it’s just one click away! Get new batteries at PartsAvatar.

Learn To Check Your Fluids

If there is something which you shouldn’t delay or avoid at any cost, then it would be checking the fluids. Don’t ignore the leaky transmission fluid. Low or unhealthy transmission fluids will result in shifting problems. But, how do you know if your transmission fluid is healthy? Pink and sweet smell indicates a healthy fluid whereas red or brown color with burnt smell indicates bad transmission fluid. Checking the level of fluid can be done with the help of dipstick. If the fluid is low or contaminated, you’ll notice a warning light on the dashboard. All you have to do is fill it up to the right level or change the fluid.

Replace Your Faulty Spark Plugs

Replace faulty spark plugs, as it can be one of the probable reasons for the improper functioning of the engine. Check them every now and then as they wear out easily and can end up in carbon build-up. Usually, spark plugs which are made of Iridium or titanium can withstand for about 100,000 miles. On the other hand, you must be careful of the cheaper spark plugs which are made of copper as they might last only for 30,000 miles and would need replacement.

Inspect And Replace The Timing And Serpentine Belts When Necessary

Even a small priced item which needs replacement can turn into a huge bill when not checked and replaced as needed. Faulty timing belts can cause severe damage to the engine system as well as other accessories making the repairs even more expensive. Your car dealer service center can always let you know as to when to change the belt. It is wise to check your timing belts for every 40,000 miles or 60,000 miles. You can always look for the same information in the owner’s manual.

Streaky Views? Replace Your Windshield Wipers

It is very important to have a clear view as you drive. Cleaning your wiper inside out is much needed so that the dust particles don’t accumulate and damage the windshield. Defective wipers causes scratches on the glass where you might end up replacing the entire windshield. So, never wait until you can barely see through your vehicle’s wipers because they are cheap and they can be easily replaced.

Align, Rotate & Balance Your Tires

Prevent the wearing of tires and make them last longer by getting your tires rotated after every 6000 - 8000 miles. Rotating your front and rear tires help in balancing the wear and makes it last even longer. Secondly, you’ll have to check the alignment of the tires. If the tires are not aligned properly it can give rise to steering problems resulting in an accident.

Proper Functioning Of Cooling System

High-pressure, heat or if your hoses turn out to be old, then they can damage your cooling system by causing some leakage. You can always check them yourselves by looking at the coolant reservoir if it is at the right level. If it’s not, then there might be some leak. If you find any cracks or if the clamps are loose, then they have to be replaced and tightened respectively. Need a proper functioning cooling system? Then your engine must have sufficient coolant. So have an eye on your hoses every now then as replacing them is quite simple.

Check Your Brakes And Clutches

Ignoring car brakes can cause serious trouble. Break failure usually rises due to faulty rotors, brake pads, brake fluid, and a brake pedal. Inspecting your brakes now and then is always the best idea where you’ll have to check the brake pads as well as the brake fluid reservoir. To check your brake fluid you’ll possibly have to remove the tires and check under the car if necessary. In a similar way, clutches are prone to wear and tear. Few may last from 30,000 km to 80,000 km depending on usage. So a wise idea is to use your clutch only when needed so that it lasts longer.

Don’t Miss Your Engine Valves

There is no particular set lifespan for the engine valves. Most engine valves fail if any impurities are causing them to break. Even at times, if the timing belt is broken or improper, it can damage the engine valves. The best time to check your engine valves is while checking the timing belt. Also, when you regularly change your oil, it’s good to have an eye on your engine valves too.

Look At Your Crankshaft Bearings

Excessive heat, pressure or corrosion due to exposure to chemicals are some of the possible reasons where the crankshaft bearings may wear out. These bearings will last for a long time as long as there is sufficient supply of oil. Once the supply of oil is cut off, that’s when the actual problem begins. 

How Long Do Headlights Typically Last?

Do you have any idea as to how long the headlights will last? Ask the same question to your mechanic and he would say, “It depends”. The only time you need your headlights is during the night time. Given this, it’s difficult to identify the approximate lifespan of headlights. But one important factor can affect the longevity of the headlights. Its “heat”. The amount of heat these lights emit can affect its lifespan. So most headlights have a lifespan of about 450 - 1000 hours depending on its usage.

Longevity Of Car Radiators

A properly working radiator can withstand up to 8 - 10 years. Without the help of a radiator, it would be quite difficult to remove the heat from the coolant, as your car might overheat in no matter of time. If you want your car radiator to withstand for a long time, then you will have to flush out the coolant system as mentioned in your manual, so that there is a proper flow of water as well as antifreeze mixture. Also, make sure that the coolant is filled to the right level and if it's low, then the coolant might be leaky which might need immediate replacement. 

Fixing The Exhaust System Issues Promptly

Even a small problem in your engine component can cause a ripple effect on the entire exhaust system. These auto components are designed in such a way to last for a longer time. But they can easily get corroded depending on the climate and environment. Few components like hangers, rubber gaskets are prone to crack, tailpipes can cause leakage depending on regular usage and engine heat. Replace faulty exhaust system here. Though there is no specific lifespan as to when to replace the exhaust system, you will have to check them very often and if there are any issues, it must be fixed promptly. 

Watch Out For The Catalytic Convertors

In today’s vehicles, catalytic converters can last on an average of 160,000 km. Blocking the flow of the exhaust gas and excessive oil burning can also possibly damage the catalytic convertors. Even at times, the foul odor emanating from the engine or the exhaust system can be due to the failing catalytic convertor. This is one possible symptom that the catalytic converter is faulty and needs replacement. Unlike other auto parts such as brakes, tires, etc, catalytic converter requires less maintenance and won't be needing frequent replacements. 

Broken Water Pumps? Fix Them!

Usually, the water pumps last for a longer time. It is recommended that you replace the faulty water pumps every time you change the timing belts. On different makes and models, the water pumps would last about 90,000 km to 140,000 km. Some common symptoms for a faulty water pump can be leaky coolant or abnormal noise from the water pump. If such symptoms pop up, then replace the damaged water pump as quickly as possible. 

Bottom Line:  This repair timeline is a guideline which can help your vehicle to get into shape. Every effort you put to check your vehicle is worth the time and money. If any components of your vehicle are broken, faulty or malfunctioning and if your looking for replacement parts, then find them easily at PartsAvatar. Also, enjoy the benefit of free shipping for auto parts on orders above $99. 

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