Busy work and family schedules can translate into a lot of driving. Who has time to deal with unexpected car repairs? Here’s the thing about vehicles… most of the car repair items and expenses people deal with could have been avoided had they taken the time to invest in some basic car maintenance. I put together this list of the 5 most overlooked vehicle maintenance items so you can avoid the headaches and hassles of a vehicle breakdown.
Everyone knows they need to have the oil and oil filter changed on a regular basis. When it comes to additional vehicle maintenance, don’t ignore these 5 things:
- Cooling System Service – The cooling system in your vehicle is a critical engine component. To properly maintain this system, it’s important to have the antifreeze/coolant drained, flushed and replaced on a regular schedule. Otherwise, the engine systems will undergo corrosion causing them to wear out faster. You are also at risk of having the engine overheat which means you could sustain major engine damage. We can do a simple test to make sure the coolant is up to par. We will also take a look at belts and hoses so you can replace them before they break. Once a month, check the coolant level and condition. If you have to add fluid to the radiator or overflow tank, there’s a leak somewhere in the system that needs to be fixed.
- Transmission Fluid and Filter Service – The cost associated with changing the transmission fluid and filter are much more cost-effective than if you have to replace an entire transmission. Check the fluid level and condition once a month and have the fluid and filter changed according to the service interval identified in the vehicle owner’s manual. If you do a lot of towing or driving in extreme conditions, you will want to have the fluid and filter changed more often.
- Power Steering Service – When was the last time you brought your vehicle in for a power steering service? Thought so. That’s why it’s on the list of the 5 most overlooked car maintenance services. After prolonged use, the power steering fluid becomes dirty and less able to protect the power steering components. Check the fluid level and condition once each month. If you have to add fluid, there’s a problem that needs to be fixed.
- Timing Belt Replacement – The timing belt is definitely one part that should be replaced before it breaks! A broken timing belt will wreak havoc on your engine. Yes, it’s on the expensive side to replace because there is a lot of work involved in accessing the timing belt. That said, the cost to replace the belt is a lot less than replacing the engine or the entire vehicle. The owner’s manual will identify when the timing belt should be replaced. You can also ask our certified technicians.
- Wheel Alignment – With regular wheel alignments, your tires will last longer (if you rotate and maintain them – read more here) and the suspension system will operate properly. Alignments should be checked once a year; more often if you hit a pothole or curb. You will also want to have an alignment done when you replace your tires. We don’t do alignments in our shop, but we can certainly recommend a local shop that does.
When it comes to vehicle maintenance and repair, the certified technicians at Geller’s Automotive have the expertise and equipment to keep your vehicle running safely and reliably for many years to come. Click here to make an appointment in our Byram, New Jersey auto repair shopfor your next vehicle maintenance now.