Can you believe there’s only just over four weeks until Christmas? In this edition of our automotive column, we’re taking a deep dive into the world of car servicing. Beyond the routine oil change, what exactly goes into a comprehensive service of your beloved vehicle?
Let’s unpack the details and explore why regular servicing is a non-negotiable for car owners.
The anatomy of a service: A comprehensive check-up
Every car service should be more than just a quick pit stop; it should be a thorough check-up for your four-wheeled companion. There are generally two types of services, minor and major.
Here’s what you can expect:
Consultation: When you drop your vehicle off you will be asked of any concerns or unusual things you may have noticed between services.
Safety first: Lights, brakes, tyres, and windscreen wipers undergo safety checks, ensuring your car is ready to take on the road safely.
Engine health: The running of the engine is scrutinised, are there any unusual sounds? A check is done for dashboard warning lights and the service schedule is also consulted to ensure all bases are covered.
Beneath the surface: With the car elevated on the hoist, technicians drop the oil and inspect everything underneath. From tyre tread to brake pads, suspension, and potential oil leaks, no stone is left unturned. The oil filter is swapped out to ensure optimal engine performance.
Fluid dynamics: The car is lowered, and the oil is replaced. Fluids, including coolant and brake fluid are tested to ensure they aren’t contaminated and need changing. If not in need of changing they are topped up along with windscreen washer fluid. Air and cabin filters are checked and replaced if necessary, along with windscreen wipers and a thorough examination of belts and other components.
Finishing touches: Tyre pressures are checked and topped up, followed by a start-up check for any unusual noises. A test drive ensures everything is in top-notch condition. The logbook is updated, service sticker updated and the car is washed, leaving it not only mechanically sound but clean and shiny.
Minor v major service: Tailoring to your car’s needs
A minor service encompasses the essentials, while a major service delves deeper, possibly including tasks like spark plug replacement, changing diff oils, timing belt, fuel filter replacement, and refreshing coolant and brake fluid.
Service intervals and logbooks: Your roadmap to maintenance
Every car comes with a logbook, a roadmap to the required services in both months and kilometres. The service needs to be done once you reach one of these, which ever comes first. Adhering to these intervals is not just a suggestion but a necessity to maintain your vehicle, ensure safety, and retain the warranty. We recommend no longer than 10,000km or 12 months between services.
Why service your car? The crucial reasons
Extend its life: Regular servicing prevents costly repairs and contributes to the longevity of your vehicle.
Safety first: A well-maintained vehicle is a safer vehicle on the road.
Warranty protection: For newer cars, following the service schedule is crucial to retaining the warranty.
Convenience matters: A breakdown is inconvenient; regular servicing prevents unexpected roadside troubles.
Understand the lifespan of your fluids: Oil and filters matter.
Oil shelf life: Oil has a shelf life of 12 months and can get dirty, impacting engine efficiency.
Filters, like the oil filter, can become clogged with debris causing your car to run inefficiently and if left too long, engine damage.
Air filter – This filters the air that your engine breathes, a dirty filter affects the car’s performance and you will use more fuel.
Cabin filter – Filters the air that you breathe in the cabin, a dirty filter will affect the performance of your air conditioner and possibly affect your health.
The expert’s touch: Identifying problems before they escalate
A skilled mechanic doesn’t just service your car; they give it a complete going-over, identifying immediate issues and foreseeing potential future problems.
This foresight allows you to budget for upcoming maintenance needs.
In conclusion, a car service is not just an obligation but a commitment to the well-being and longevity of your vehicle. Regular servicing ensures that your car remains a reliable companion on the road, avoiding costly repairs and unexpected breakdowns. So, fellow drivers, let’s make a pact to give our vehicles the care they deserve, ensuring countless kilometres of smooth and trouble-free rides ahead. Until next time, happy and safe driving! Call our team on 4732 3676.