An oil change? Again? It seems like you just got one done, and 3,000 miles ago, hopefully you did.
Regular oil changes are only a small part of your vehicle’s preventative maintenance schedule, which is designed by the manufacturer to keep your car running as smoothly as possible for as long as possible. But is all that maintenance really necessary? And why, exactly, is putting it off until later so bad?
What is Factory-Recommended Maintenance?
All vehicles, including yours, are made to be maintained on a schedule. The maintenance is based on the manufacturer specifications and is usually broken down into intervals measured by mileage. You’ve probably heard the general rules of thumb: replace your air filter around 12,000 to 15,000 miles, rotate your tires every 3,000 to 5,000 miles, and so on. The maintenance intervals for your vehicle may differ slightly, so check your owner’s manual for your car’s specifics.
Factory-recommended maintenance includes things like:
- Fluid and filter replacement
- Oil change
- Tire pressure and rotation
- Brake and timing belt service
There are two types of maintenance schedules that come with each car, and how you drive will determine which you should follow. A severe maintenance schedule means you often drive on dusty or rough roads, spend extended periods of time idling, frequently drive in stop-and-go traffic, and/or travel at extreme temperatures. If your driving habits don’t match any of those criteria, stick with the normal maintenance schedule.
Factory-Recommended Maintenance is Important
Your vehicle’s recommended maintenance schedule is designed to extend the longevity of your car. Regular inspections allow your mechanic to spot problems or needed replacements before they become a more serious issue.
If you plan to sell or trade in your car in the future, keeping up with the factory-recommended maintenance helps preserve your vehicle’s resale value. In addition, some manufacturers will deny your warranty if your maintenance history doesn’t match the recommended schedule, so make sure to save all documentation that shows your car’s regular services.
Ignoring your maintenance schedule will only negatively affect your vehicle’s performance, as it will be forced to work harder to make up for poorly maintained parts. Your fuel economy will suffer significantly, and if your car breaks down, the needed repairs can often be more expensive than it would be to get the preventative maintenance done in the first place.
Remember that factory-recommended maintenance differs from vehicle to vehicle and driver to driver. Just because the filters or tires should be checked every so often, doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll have to be replaced at that interval. At Advanced Repair, we pride ourselves on working with customers to help keep their vehicles in the best possible condition, making the roads safer for everyone.