Car service is a process that has the potential of saving you some extra costs which may be a result of accumulating car problems. This is possible because a good car service will help to identify issues in advance. In fact, performing car service will also save you from the potential of accidents occurring due to mechanical issues.
What is car service?
Car service is meant to check the car’s condition by assessing the general wear and tear, fluids, brakes, the engine and much more. Car service is performed at specific time intervals. This is an appointment made by the dealer or a professional. However it doesn’t exempt you from undertaking regular car maintenance. For example; the application of brake pad grease.
In fact, regular maintenance is one way of reducing the total car service costs. It’s important to perform regular car service for specific areas like the fluids to ensure they’re available in sufficient amounts. Further it’s important to ensure there is no fluid leakage. Which is an easy thing to do just by checking whether there is a colorful fluid under the car. Additionally, knowing the color of the fluid under the car will enable you to know which fluid it is. This will help to prevent incidents that stem from insufficient engine fluids.
What does a full car service include?
Below is a comprehensive car service checklist of what happens during servicing. However the number of things that are assessed will differ from one service provider to another. Further, as we have mentioned above, it depends on whether you have undertaken routine maintenance before the day of service. That’s because it will reduce the number of things that need to be checked.
Though some of the items in this car service checklist may require replacement while others won’t. So, in todays list we will venture into all the essentials that need to be verified during the servicing;
- Testing the car battery.
- Suspension system checking.
- Steering wheel alignment.
- Cooling system assessment. This involves checking the challenges within the car’s cooling system.
- Fluid levels. In terms of hydraulic fluid levels, coolant levels, Oil, among others like power steering fluids.
- Engine optimum picking levels by tuning the throttle body issues.
- Tire rotation.
- Balancing and alignment for vehicle stability and weight handling.
- Brakes, brake pedal and brake pads.
- Air filters.
- Fuel Pump. The fuel pump regulates fuel delivery for combustion and the fuel pump must be replaced at the first sign of irregular fuel consumption.
- Exhaust and muffler.
- Bulbs. This goes for all the lights on the car, including the type of headlights and tail lights as well as dome lights and any other installed lighting.
- Spark plugs.
- Timing belt or cambelt.
Why do I need car service.
Above we have looked at what a car service involves. This is just a general car service checklist for you to use when you want to take the ride to a professional for servicing. There are several advantages of undertaking car service.
1. Reduction of total fuel costs.
The fact that the car service includes checking the fuel pump is a guarantee of better fuel consumption. Additionally, the tuning of the throttle body is a sure way to ensure efficient fuel utilization. If you notice that your car is using more fuel for lesser distance, it’s important for you to consider a service checkup.
2. Better car resale value.
A well maintained car alongside a tuned car will be of a higher resale value. In comparison to a car that hasn’t undergone regular maintenance servicing. That’s because a serviced car comes with better operating system.
3. Insurance cover premiums.
Insurance companies will usually assess your service schedule before they reimburse your cover. Especially after an incident that requires the insurance company to intervene. Further, depending on the insurance company’s policies, undertaking regular servicing will save some insurance costs.
4. Improved car lifespan.
It is obvious that regular car servicing will largely affect the vehicle’s lifespan. By vehicle lifespan we mean the duration before some mechanical issue makes your car to brake down.
5. Long term cost saving.
By undertaking regular servicing, you will avoid costly breakdowns that could occur in the long run due to continued malfunctions. Incase something brakes-down due to neglect, it will cost you a lot more. This is in terms of replacement or repair fee as well as time and convenience costs.
DIY requirements for servicing my car.
Many car owners may view the task of servicing the car as a really technical occurrence. But if you have the right tools as well as the knowhow, this isn’t far fetched. There are a number of things that you can do by yourself in terms of servicing the car. On the contrary, there are issues that you shouldn’t handle without the technical knowhow.
DIY Car servicing and maintenance.
The following are some car maintenance routines that you can undertake by yourself. They will go a long way in helping to reduce the risk of car breakdown. Further saving you a lot of costs that are associated with car breakdowns.
1. Checking oil levels.
Car oil is an essential part of the engine in terms of lubrication and cooling. You can personally check the oil levels within the engine block without any technical knowhow. If the oil has been present over an essential amount of miles, it’s important for you to drain the oil tank and add new oil.
There are a number of things that you can do for the car’s tires to ensure they are in good driving conditions. This won’t involve the utilization of a professional’s input. But the outcome of this DIY exercise will require the input of a professional. For example, tire balancing will require a professional who has the required equipment. The best you can do in terms of DIY car servicing for the tires is to check the tire thread’s breadth, tire pressure and condition.
3. Oil and engine fluid levels.
This is one of the easiest parts of the car service checklist. You just need to ensure that there is no leakage of the car’s engine fluid components. Inclusive of oil, coolant, brake fluid, power steering fluid, water among others. Incase there is a deficit in those fluids, then you can top up.
The handbrake is also called the parking brake. Some cars will usually have a problem with parking on a steep slope. That’s because the parking brake may be experiencing some problems. Ensure you look into how effective it is at holding the car in place. Conduct parking on a steep surface test.
5. Air filter.
Air filter replacement is a DIY task. As long as you know what the installation involves. This may require you to go through a little technical knowledge. But assessing the condition of the air filter isn’t knowledge based.
Which tools do I need to service a car by myself DIY?
Having basic knowledge about which parts of the vehicle require a little attention is quite important. Especially when you notice some issues like the car shaking. The next step is to have the right tools that will be of assistance during this process. Some of the tools we will mention below are effective if you use them alongside the others.
1. Lug wrench.
It is an important tool when it comes to solving problems occurring within the suspension system.
This is very effective in fixing issues that appear around the tires. You have to use the jack alongside the adjustable wrench. Use the jack to lift the car and the adjustable wrench to loosen the nuts and bolts.
3. Adjustable wrench.
It has a movable lower jaw that helps to change the size of the wrench opening. It helps in the removal of screws and bolts.
4. Spark plug wrench.
When you notice that your vehicle won’t start, there are a number of reasons behind the issue. One of them being the spark plug. So if you have to remove or tighten the spark plug, this tool is for you.
The screw driver comes in various tip shapes to ensure they are suitable for a variety of roles. For this reason, you will have to choose the screwdriver that suits the roles you’re about to perform during car servicing.
They play a number of roles for example, turning, pinching, loosening and cutting amongst others. Locking pliers are very effective at performing essential roles in order to accomplish tasks.
How much does a car service cost?
It is possible that service costs will vary depending on a variety of things. First it depends on
- The car model.
- Amounts of car mileage.
- Service provider.
- Vehicle utilization.
Some manufacturers recommend that the vehicle’s servicing should take place after a specific amount of miles. Routine car checkup should be undertaken after like 5000 miles. The cost will also vary on the extent of replacements that have to take place during service. Further the costs will depend on the area of focus.
- Break pad replacement will cost approximately $115 to $300.
- Tire rotation will be approximately $24 to $100.
- The basic inspection of the vehicle will be an estimation of $150 to $250.
These are varying costs which will give you a rough idea of what to expect.