Preventive Maintenance: Save on Repairs & Prolong Car Life

Preventive Maintenance: Save on Repairs & Prolong Car Life

18th May 2023

White Chevy Camaro in a dark garage with luxury cars on lifts in the background

Preventive maintenance is essential to making your vehicle last. As the name suggests, it encompasses automotive maintenance tasks that are designed to prevent failures. Some drivers wait until their vehicle breaks down to get it repaired. Smarter and more financially savvy drivers, on the other hand, perform preventive maintenance.

Oil Changes

Even if this is your first time hearing about preventive maintenance, you're probably familiar with oil changes. All combustion-gas engines use oil. Available in natural, synthetic and hybrid formulas, it's a semi-viscous liquid. Oil will flow through your vehicle's engine while lubricating its internal components, removing heat and collecting contaminants. Getting your vehicle's oil changed according to the manufacturer's recommendations is a form of preventive maintenance.

Filter Replacements

You should replace your vehicle's filters as well. Most vehicles have several different filters, each of which collects particulate matter. Over time, these filters will become clogged, in which case you'll need to replace them. Using a dirty or clogged filter will only expose your vehicle to wear and tear.

Some of the most common types of filters found in vehicles include the following:

  • Engine air filter
  • Cabin air filter
  • Fuel filter
  • Oil filter

Coolant Changes

In addition to the oil, you should change your vehicle's coolant on a regular basis. Oil will remove some heat from your vehicle's engine, but coolant is the primary cooling agent. It will run through the engine while absorbing heat generated from the combustion process. Coolant will then flow to the radiator, at which point a fan will move air over the coolant to release the heat.

Like most automotive fluids, coolant will degrade over time. It may lose its rust-inhibiting qualities, thus allowing corrosion to develop inside of the engine and other parts of your vehicle's cooling system. You can prevent damage such as this by getting your vehicle's coolant changed on a regular basis.

Battery Terminal Cleanings

You should get into the habit of cleaning the battery terminals. Battery terminals are connectors for the battery. Since they are located in the engine bay, they are exposed to the heat and humidity. This can cause them to corrode while subsequently harming the performance of the battery. Cleaning the terminals, however, will help to protect them from corrosion.

Wheel Alignments

Another form of preventative maintenance you shouldn't overlook is a wheel alignment. Also known as wheel tracking, it involves adjustments to the angles at which the wheels point. With a wheel alignment, the goal is to make all of the wheels point in the same direction. When properly aligned, there will be less stress on your vehicle's tires and suspension.