Guides

I keep my cars for 3 to 5 years, then trade them in

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Under hood checks

Once a week or when refueling. New vehicles require less attention and most problems are covered by the warranty, but if the problem has to do with low oil, and as a result engine damage occurs, you are not covered. Even if the low oil level was not your fault, you may be stuck with replacing an engine out of your own pocket, or paying a lawyer to fight the manufacturer.

Oil change

Follow manufacturer’s recommendations in your owners manual, (required to maintain warranty) Some new engines normally run very hot and are hard on oil. even missing a single oil change can cause an engine to develop sludge which can cause engine damage in as little as 15,000 miles. Sludge problems are not covered by the warranty. You could be stuck with a bill for major engine work!

Washing

Every 2 to 4 weeks depending on conditions in your area. Garaged cars can go longer. Bird droppings should be removed as soon as possible as they can damage the finish.

Waxing

Optional. Waxing will protect the finish and require less washing. A good idea if you park outside in industrial areas or under trees.

Align & Balance

Check the tires for unusual wear or drifting right or left when on a straight road. (Click on Align & Balance for more info.)

Tire rotation

This is more important for front-wheel-drive cars that usually wear front tires much faster than rear-wheel-drive vehicles. Check the tread depth from time to time. Selling a car with two completely worn tires and two tires that look like new will reduce the price that you can get whereas four half worn tires will probably not.

Tune up

Follow manufacturer’s recommendation.

Winterizing

Follow manufacturer’s recommendation.

Timing belt

Usually not required for the first 60,000 miles. Check owner’s manual to see if your vehicle has one, then follow manufacturer’s recommendation. Letting this service go can cause severe engine damage if the old belt fails which may not be covered under the warranty.

Filters

Follow manufacturer’s recommendation

Click a star to rate this article
[Total: 0    Average: 0/5]
Author

CarParts.com

Staff Writers

In the Garage with CarParts.com is an online blog dedicated to bringing DIYers and devoted car enthusiasts up to date with topical automotive news and lifestyle content. Our writers live and breathe automotive, taking the guess work out of car repairs with how-to content that helps owners get back on the road and keep driving.

File Under : Guides