You have a Car, Truck, Van or SUV and now you are looking at a massive repair bill. This may be because you overlooked or avoided doing the Preventative Maintenance as recommended by the manufacturer. Skipping the recommended maintenance not only can cause warranty issues if your vehicle is newer, it will also cost you far more in the long run as repairs almost always cost more than the routine maintenance does.
Every vehicle is slightly different but there are some key rules of thumb that can save you time, hassles and keep some of your hard earned money in your pocket (which is exactly where it belongs).
Cars today are built better and have longer service intervals than older cars but sticking to the scheduled maintenance for things that are typically called OEM Intervals is a great way to always ensure that your vehicle is ready to go when you are. Here are some tips to make sure you are looking after your investment correctly:
- Review your Owners Manual – Every new car comes with an owners manual that lays out the recommended maintenance. This always starts with the regular Oil Change Interval (this may be 5,000 km or even 6-8000 km depending on the make and model of your vehicle. If you are not sure what the recommended service intervals are, or can’t find your Owners Manual, check with your VIP Service Manager for what is best for your vehicle.
- Budget for Preventative Maintenance – Knowing that things like Tire Rotation, Air Filter Replacement, Brake Service and Fluid Flushes are coming up allows you to budget accordingly. An Oil Change may cost $27-74 per interval but things like filters and fluids can quickly add up if you are not prepared for them.
- Take Advantage of Seasonal Maintenance – The VIP Seasonal Maintenance Package reviews far more components with an in depth inspection of all the key components of your vehicle. Rotating the tires or installing seasonal tires extends the life of your tires too which is another major saving.
- Service your Brakes – Taking advantage of regular brake service can extend the life of your brake components at a fraction of the cost of replacement. If you park your vehicle for an extended period it is a good idea to have this critical safety feature tested and adjusted if necessary.
- Know your Vehicle – Many times our vehicles are speaking to us, we just don’t always listen. If you are hearing a squeak, or bumps in the road are sending your car for a loop…it is a good idea to look to getting some preventative maintenance done before the components are too far gone to be adjusted.
Some typical intervals for Preventative Maintenance:
6 months or 5-8,000 km
- Oil Change
Annual Maintenance or 12,000 km (which ever comes first)
- Cabin Air Filter
- Engine Air Filter
- Alignment Check
Every 24,000 km
- Brake Service
- Battery Service
Every 64,000 km
- Brake Fluid Flush
Every 96,000-160,000 (depending on vehicle check owners manual)
- Engine Coolant
- Transmission Fluid
Every 160,000-200,000 km (depending on vehicle – check owners manual)
- Spark Plugs
Much of the time, these service intervals are listed in a “Time or mileage” scenario. If you drive less than 12,000 km per year, your service intervals should be based on time rather than on mileage. Check with your VIP Service Manager on what is the right time to bring your car in so you have the proper balance between peace of mind, and a “padded wallet”.