Car Maintenance 101: Things You Need to Check During Regular Auto Service

Car maintenance doesn’t always involve spending a lot of money. In fact, simple maintenance routines such as checking tire pressure and adding air when necessary can be done at home. However, your car still needs to be sent to the dealer for periodic checks and maintenance even if everything seems just fine with your car. Sometimes, there are just issues that are not easily noticed unless the car is thoroughly inspected. A professional auto service technician is trained to observe the slightest abnormalities that could lead to failure.

Typically, a car should be serviced once or twice a year. Regular service is important to ensure the longevity of such parts as the engine, brakes, and tires and to help guarantee your car’s safety on the road. Without maintenance, your car is at risk of breaking down unannounced, and you may end up paying more than you planned. However, when you do take your car to be serviced, there are some things that you need to make sure are checked by the technician. Read on to find out what they are.

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Oil Levels

Your car is composed of more than just a few moving parts, and you need sufficient oil to make them run smoothly. To check oil level at home, pull out the dipstick attached to the reservoir to see the amount of oil available. However, cars need an oil change on a regular basis. Usually, this is measured by mileage, such as every 3,000 miles or 10,000 miles. Check with your car manufacturer for the proper parameters for changing the oil. During an oil change, your oil filters should also be replaced.


Brake failures cause a lot of accidents. Unfortunately, detecting a problem within the braking system isn’t as easy as it sounds. The braking system has many components, such as brake fluid reservoir, brake lines, brake shoes and pads, and brake lights. There are several ways to detect a problem with the braking system. Analyzing the dashboard and listening to unusual noises, and longer stopping distances are among them. You should know the signs of car brakes going bad, but it’s best to leave the servicing to a professional.

Transmission Fluid

Aside from letting the car run smoothly, transmission fluid also helps to clean and protect the transmission from metal wear. Old fluid may make shifting gears sticky and thus affect your driving. Auto service technicians usually check the transmission fluid every three months.

All Lights

Headlights, signals, reverse lights, brake lights, fog lights—you name them. Malfunctioning lights can be dangerous, especially if you are driving at night. Even if it doesn’t cause an accident, you could still be pulled over by the police for a traffic violation.

Air Filter

Air filters should be checked monthly. A clogged air filter could be bad for your health and may even increase fuel consumption due to reduced burn efficiency. Even if it needs replacing, it only costs very little so don’t be afraid to include it into your maintenance routine, too.

Tire Pressure

Although you can measure and add tire pressure on your own, it’s a good thing to have this checked during regular auto service. You can make sure that the pressure level you are using is in line with the manufacturer’s instructions, and you can also check if there are small, undetected holes in your tire. Use this opportunity to also check the condition of your spare tire.

There are still a lot of components that need to be checked in a regular auto service, such as wiper blades, windshield washer fluid level, exhaust system, horn, air-conditioning system, and power steering fluids. Some of these are easy enough for you to check at home. But if you detect a problem, bring the car to a trusted, professional auto service center as soon as possible.


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Categories: Auto Dealers