Vehicle tune-ups are a must for any and every driver. Regardless of your vehicle's age, making sure it's in tip-top shape can help in its overall longevity. But what composes of a tune-up? Whether you're a new driver or need a refresher, it's good to be in the know!
The Million-Dollar Question: What is a tune-up?
Tune-ups are routine maintenance procedures where the mechanic thoroughly examines a vehicle's engine. They're primarily checking for dirty, worn, or faulty parts. The goal is to reduce any issues a driver may face on the road by replacing parts that aren't working optimally. A mechanic will be able to determine if a car needs a tune-up based on a visual inspection or a simple test.
What consists of a tune-up?
Depending on the auto repair shop, a tune-up may differ based on timing, the clientele, and the vehicle's model and age. However, mechanics usually follow a simple checklist when it comes to a standard tune-up:
- Changing the vehicular filters, including the air filter, the cabin filter, or the oil filter
- Replacing ignition parts such as coils, wires, spark plugs, etc.
- Maintaining the vehicle's auxiliary systems with a new belt and hose
- Replacing proper fluids like motor oil, coolant, and brake fluid
Those are the main steps that mechanics will follow, but it does depend on the shop you decide on.
When should I get a vehicle tune-up?
According to most mechanics and auto repair shops, it would depend on your vehicle's age. It should get tuned up every 10,000 to 12,000 miles annually if it's an older model. Newer models should get a tune-up every 25,000 miles, but some can last longer. A driver should research more about their vehicle's longevity and maintenance records or even bring up related questions to their mechanics to ensure they're getting the best service.
Why should I get a tune-up? What happens if I wait?
Great question! Just like physicals and dental check-ups, vehicles must have routine tune-ups. Mechanics are like "automobile doctors," specialized to ensure they're running at total capacity. Vehicles are bound to break down with everyday use, and drivers must be up to date in maintenance. They lose their efficiency over time, and if not properly checked, they can cause problems for a driver down the road. Pun intended.
Tune-ups are an excellent insurance policy that keeps your car in its best shape for as long as possible. Drivers must contact their mechanics and auto repair shops, prepared to learn more about their vehicles and how to better care for them. A tune-up is one of the best ways to learn more about your vehicle and what makes it tick. Or honk.