The Top 5 Common Myths about Vehicle Maintenance
When it comes to vehicle maintenance, it seems that everyone has a different opinion about how it ought to be done and how often. Your dad always told you one thing, but now the quick-lube shop is telling you something else. In many cases, however, the advice your dad gave you no longer applies to modern vehicles. On the other hand, that does not necessarily mean that the quick-lube shop’s word is gospel either. Here are some common myths about car care that we hear at Premier Coach Works:
Myth #1: Let the vehicle heat up before driving
This myth comes from the idea that your car will last longer if the engine is able to idle until it reaches normal operating temperature. There is some truth in this. When the engine and oil are cold, the oil runs thicker and it takes a very small amount of time to flow to all the parts of the engine. However, the time it takes is so minute that warming up the engine before driving is only wasting fuel and emitting fumes. Instead, drive very gently for the first few minutes to allow the engine to reach its optimal temperature. Naturally, if your vehicle has a coat of ice on the windows in the morning, it is a smart idea to heat up the vehicle before driving anywhere, but this is typically not a problem for Phoenix residents!
Myth #2: Change the oil every 3000 miles
While true for older vehicles, this myth does not hold water with newer makes and models. Some new cars can even go twice as long between oil changes. Check your vehicle’s manufacturer’s manual for the interval at which you will need an oil change. Changing the oil more often won’t hurt, but it’s not always necessary either.
Myth #3: Tires should be inflated to the pressure indicated on the tire sidewall
If you look at your tires, you will see that the recommended pounds-per-square-inch (PSI) is displayed on the tire wall. But contrary to popular belief, this figure actually refers to the maximum amount of pressure the tire can hold. The automaker’s recommended pressure, usually located in the glove box or in the driver side doorjamb, is a much better inflation level for your tires. This is because it takes into account the best balance for braking, handling, gas mileage and comfort for your particular vehicle.
Myth #4: Premium-grade fuel is better than regular-grade
Unless you drive a car that specifically requires premium-grade fuel for its high-compression engine, you are probably wasting your money on premium fuel. Most vehicles run fine on regular unleaded fuel.
Myth #5: When your brake fluid gets low, simply top it off to fix the problem
Brake fluid levels drop as a result of the brake pads wearing down, so it is not beneficial to keep refilling the brake fluid. A depleted fuel level generally indicates a bigger problem, such as a leaky engine or worn-out brake pads. If this is the case, get your car into the shop ASAP for some TLC.
As a final point, be sure to follow our tips for maintaining your car’s paint job. Premier Coach Works is a full service Auto Body Repair and Paint Shop located in El Mirage, Arizona. To prepare your car for the summer, get an online quote from our service facility and let us get you going this summer. Premier Coach Works is on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. Join the conversation!