In light of our recent used van purchase I thought I would brush on a topic that I feel is very important; proper vehicle maintenance.
It’s very important to keep your car maintained well, be it old, new to you, or even brand new. Keeping up with maintenance on your car will not only help you daily as you will get better gas mileage, but it will help your car last as long as intended by the manufacture and keep you and your family safe when you are out there on the roadway.
As for who is doing my car maintenance, I have been using the same mechanic for some time and although I have had a few weird things happen there (I’ll go over those a little later), I do trust the regular guys at the shop and know they are looking out for my best interest.
More than once have I been without my wallet (I don’t carry a conventional wallet and far too often forget it at home or at the office, I know that’s really bad!) and they don’t hold the car ransom or anything, even when I had some major break work done and the bill was quite large. They let me take the car and trust that I will get them paid as soon as possible. Once they under-billed me and basically gave me a free service visit and when I noticed and brought it to their attention, they told me not to worry about it. I’m really glad these guys were confident enough in their service that they took an out of the ordinary approach to building a customer base.
Here’s where I put a little spin on things. I was reading online about oil changes for some reason, I can’t recall, and I came across a thread discussing the many variations on the mileage requirement placed on vehicles and at different vehicle service centers before service is required. You know, those little stickers they put on your window telling you when to come back for your next oil change.
I thought that the standard maintenance interval was every 5,000 miles between oil changes and that’s what I’ve been doing since I first started driving. I stuck to that and always ignored the little sticker that service centers put on my window, assuming that the sticker read 5,000 miles as well, but when I actually did look at the sticker and did the math, I realized that they were putting my next visit at 3,000 miles, not 5,000.
What I found online was even more shocking! I saw many variations to this ranging from 2,000 miles before an oil change to 10,000 miles. The only real constant I saw was that you should consult your vehicles owner’s manual, so when we got our new car, that’s exactly what I did.
Here’s what I found: Two completely different sets of maintenance guidelines.
The first one was for ideal conditions, probably only fit for California residence with good road conditions, perfect weather and exceptional driving habits. This schedule said that for our 05 Kia Sedona in these conditions, you should get the oil changed every 7,500 miles.
The second set of guidelines was for anything out of the perfect conditions, and specifically for areas known for conditions that make your car squirm; those that salt roads when it snows, have higher altitudes, and don’t maintain their roads. They could have just put my address on these guidelines as each of them described the conditions that I drive in day in and day out. The maintenance schedule for these conditions was 3,000 miles!
So my question to you is, do you follow your mechanic’s guidelines, consult your owner’s manual, or follow your instincts when it comes to vehicle maintenance?
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Tags: best interest, car maintenance, customer base, family safe, gas mileage, interval, major break, mechanic, mileage, oil change, oil changes, proper vehicle, ransom, roadway, stickers, variations, vehicle maintenance, wallet, weird things