Preventive Maintenance: Maximizing Your Investment


What do cars with 200K or more miles often have in common? Owners who followed the recommended service schedule.

A well maintained vehicle is more dependable, safer, more fuel efficient, less polluting, and more valuable. Your vehicle is a big investment. Performing regular scheduled maintenance is the best way to get the most out of it. Most drivers know that they need to change their oil regularly, but don’t necessarily know or follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule for their car.

Why should you follow a schedule?


Maintain your resale value

Ask for an emailed copy of your service receipts and keep them in a cloud folder or use a scheduled service record mobile app.

A properly cared for vehicle is going to look better, ride smoother, and test drive better. Having proof to show potential buyers that you have followed a service schedule can also be valuable when you are ready to sell your car. Your owner’s manual probably has a log for you to note down any service or repairs. An even easier way to create a log is to ask for an emailed copy of your service receipts and keep them in a folder in Dropbox or Google Drive. If you prefer a mobile format you can refer to while at the repair shop, there are a wide variety of apps that keep your service records right at hand and allow you schedule reminders for future maintenance.

Maximize fuel efficiency

Neglecting small maintenance issues like incorrect tire pressure, a clogged air filter, bad fuel injectors, or faulty oxygen sensors can measurably lower your gas mileage. Serious maintenance needs like sticking brakes or ignoring transmission issues are even larger fuel efficiency wreckers.

Keep vehicle safe and reliable

Servicing your car regularly decreases the chance mechanical failures that can cause an accident or leave you stranded. Every time you bring your vehicle in to us at Hillside Automotive, your technician performs a 50-point courtesy inspection. This allows potential issues to be identified and fixed before they become a major problem. If you are here with regularity for scheduled service appointments, issues like a tire nearing the end of its life can be pointed out before you end up hydroplaning in the rain.

Prevent damage

Continuing to use parts that are past their life expectancy can cause damage to other parts of the vehicle. Excessively worn parts can cause extra stress on the surrounding portions of the system, upgrading a minor part replacement into an expensive repair bill.

Maintain the warranty

New car warranties often require you to maintain their suggested service schedule in order to keep the warranty valid. Retain copies of your service receipts as proof. Check the terms of your warranty for any conditions that may be attached. By law, you have the right to choose the shop where your new vehicle receives scheduled service. You do not have to have these performed by the dealer to maintain the warranty.

Save money

For most people, a car is their second biggest investment after their home. The best way to maximize that investment is to keep that car for as long as is practical. That periodic maintenance bill is easier on the bank account than monthly payments, taxes, and insurance for a new car. The key is to prevent an accumulation of postponed repairs. This can lead to desperate measures, like trading in a vehicle that could and should have been kept in service for a long time or buying a new car in haste because you need a new one urgently that day.

If you commit to regular preventive maintenance, you’ll have fewer costly repair bills and gain years of reliable service.
Don’t know your service schedule? Check your owner’s manual or the internet for the manufacturer’s maintenance service schedule for your vehicle model and year. You should find a guide that gives their recommended intervals for the regular inspections and services needed for your vehicle. You can create a custom service schedule at the Car Care Council’s website. You can also get a free copy of the Car Care Council’s Car Care Guide.

Written by Hillside Automotive

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