If you're like many car owners, you're probably wondering how often auto repair services are actually required. After all, it is the only way to feel secure that your vehicle is always working safely and reliably. But do you really need annual checkups? The answer would be yes. Your car should be checked once a year or every 10,000-12,000 kilometers, whichever comes first. A comprehensive service is suggested, but if the vehicle is serviced periodically, a simple service will suffice to keep it operating smoothly and without problems. Annual car checkups for your car are essential in the same way that receiving an annual physical exam for yourself is.
It's advisable to consult your car's owner's manual for service intervals, as they vary depending on the model, fuel type, and engine. Have your car inspected by a professional on a regular basis either annually or as much as your car needs.
Basic/Interim, Full, Major, and Manufacturer servicing are the many types of servicing offered. The scope of these services varies, with more expensive providers providing a more thorough examination. Nonetheless, all services, from the most basic to the most advanced, will include visual inspection, oil change and oil filter change.
They will also check all levels of key fluids like the brake fluid, coolant and steering fluid. You will already get to have your brakes checked as basic service with some garages. But for a full or major service, you get to have more checks done on the vehicle and even any of the aspects of the vehicle that are not within the manufacturer’s guidelines will be replaced. But you may have to pay for anything that needs to be replaced that’s not under warranty depending on the garage.
Most garages provide a variety of services, but only manufacturer-approved garages may perform a manufacturer service, which helps to maintain your vehicle under warranty and ensures that everything on your car is in working order.
How often do you really need to service your car?
Do you really need annual checkups? Yes but some aspects of your vehicle need to be checked more frequently. Here is a list of the basic car maintenance and how often you would need it done:
- Done every 3 months or every 3,000 miles
- Tire pressures – Make it a habit to maintain optimum pressures for better handling and fuel efficiency, as well as to avoid costly anomalous wear and dangerous conditions.
- Fluid Check – A monthly fluid check is usually hardly necessary if your car is newer. However, on older vehicles, catching a problem early, such as a leaking water pump or engine oil leak, can save a lot of effort and money in the long run. Set a reminder on your calendar once every few months to perform the following fast and easy checks:
Engine oil level – The oil level on the dipstick should be between the low and full lines. If your oil light turns on between these checks, you'll need to check the level and top it off once a month instead. Depending on the manufacturer's recommendations and whether your car uses standard or synthetic motor oil, you should change the engine oil more frequently.
Transmission fluid — If you don't have a dipstick for your transmission, skip this step. If you do, you'll inspect and smell the liquid. It shouldn't be too black, and it shouldn't smell bitter or burned.
Windshield washer fluid is a liquid that is used to clean the inside of the windshield. When you're beneath the hood, you can't go wrong with this one. It's far too simple!
Coolant – When the engine is cool, the level on the reservoir should be between the low and full lines. Refilling your coolant is a relatively straightforward car maintenance activity that you can perform yourself if you follow the proper procedures. Always make sure your engine is turned off and cool before starting. It's a good idea to mark your coolant reservoir, which is normally made of translucent plastic.
Level of brake fluid – The reservoir's level should be somewhere between low and full. If it's low, if you're not familiar with brake system repairs, have your vehicle towed to a professional shop. Your brakes require brake fluid to function, and a low fluid level signifies a major safety issue.
Power Steering Fluid – Check the level of power steering fluid.
- Hoses – Looking and touching are required for a thorough hose examination. Hoses should not have any leaks or bulges that indicate internal failure. They should also not be too stiff, with some flex, especially when it's hot.
- Belt(s) – check ups do not apply if you have a timing belt because there is no convenient way to see a timing belt. Timing belts should be replaced strictly on the basis of time and mileage, and they should be done on time. Serpentine belts, also known as drive belts, are, on the other hand, much easier to inspect. Glazed, cracked, or frayed belts should be avoided.
Some cars also require mechanical maintenance, such as spark plug and drive belt replacement, timing belt or chain replacement, as well as air and fluid filter replacement. Belts and hoses deteriorate with use. Rubber hoses can fracture or bulge, causing leaks and perhaps leaving you stranded. Checking the hoses for the radiator, power brakes, and power steering when your automobile approaches 100,000 miles is a must.
Do you really need annual checkups? Your car will run more safely and effectively if you keep up with planned maintenance. Keep in mind that the tune up isn’t only to be done annually. You have to keep a regular maintenance schedule and it consists of different schedules for different aspects of your car. You'll avoid costly damage that could end up costing a lot more in the long run if you are committed to keeping that schedule.
A minor leak might not seem like a huge concern at first (and it probably isn't), but a blown head gasket might cost you a new engine if you neglect it long enough. A technician who does routine maintenance on your car should be familiar with warning signs, frequent problems, and parts that wear out over time. No one enjoys the bother and expense of taking their automobile off the road for inspection or minor repairs, yet one minor issue can have a cascade of consequences.
Car maintenance and inspections are designed to keep your vehicle in good working order and help you avoid catastrophic breakdowns or repairs. Regular maintenance will extend the life of your vehicle and improve its performance. The majority of us drive our cars on a daily basis. As a result, developing and sticking to a timetable that ensures your safety while on the road is well worth the effort.