Easy step by step guide on a car's first service and inspection 12,000 - 15,000
mile, this information pertains to most vehicles.
Difficulty Scale: 3 of 10
Begin with the vehicle on flat ground, engine "OFF" in park with the emergency
brake on, use protective eyewear and gloves.
is necessary to find any malfunction caused by outside forces such as road debris
or defective parts. Start by checking under the hood, inspect the coolant hoses,
vacuum lines and serpentine belt for any obvious cracks or breaks. Next, look for
fluid leaks and try to pinpoint their source for further repair procedures. Then,
inspect under the vehicle to observe suspension components, drive line and universal
joints, while checking for excessive wear or torn lubrication boots. Also, inspect
for "rust dust" on any frame member, universal joints, sway bars, locating arms,
strut rod mounting bolts and any other main frame or suspension components. This
rust colored dust is created from metal on metal contact and is an indication that
a component has failed.
Step 2 - An
oil and filter change
is mandatory at every service interval. While servicing
the engine inspect for oil and coolant leaks, loose or missing bolts or hoses while
utilizing factory warranties if problems are found.
Oil and Filter Change
Step 3 - A car operates using a variety of fluids,
engine oil, transmission and power steering fluid, brake fluid, front and rear differential
fluids. All fluids
must be maintained at a proper level, while some are easily checked others will
require the car to be a lifted.
Step 4 - In foul weather its essential to have
new wiper blades to ensure proper windshield vision. Check blades for cracking or
tears in the wiper rubber, replacing
Adding Engine Coolant
is relatively simple.
Step 5 - An air cleaner is used to remove dirt
from the engine's air intake and provides protection for internal engine parts such
as the cylinder walls. A plugged air filter will hurt performance and economy, inspecting
and replacing the
Replacing Wiper Blades
is a simple process in most cases and typically only involves opening the hood and
locating the air filter housing that is usually near the air intake.
Step 6 - A
Removing Engine Air Filter
is needed to ensure proper tread wear patterns which protects the vehicle in foul
weather. This practice also increases the lifespan of the tire which saves in replacement
Step 7 - Once the tires have been removed, check
the brake lining thickness and condition. Inspecting
Tire Rotation Patterns
can ensure a proper operation when stopping.
Most manufacturer's agree to perform a basic engine oil and oil filter change
at their recommended intervals depending on driving conditions and oil type ie:
synthetic or conventional, along with basic car safety inspection and service. Obvious
malfunctions can be repaired under warranty while generating a report, this sheet
or file is stored in a central database used by all dealerships and factory repair
Remove Brake Pads
Article first published 2016-05-03