Spring is the ideal time for a tune up for any vehicle. After a long, and sometimes harsh winter, it makes sense to ensure that an auto is in excellent condition for the warmer spring and summer months that lie ahead. There are numerous items that need to be taken care of in order to ensure that an vehicle has a complete tune up.
There are a number of parts that need to be replaced now that it is spring – time for an auto tune up. This will help to ensure that the vehicle is peak condition and, therefore, less likely to experience a break down in one of the essential systems.
The spark plugs will need to be changed to ensure that a good and seated connection can be made by the engine when it is turning over. In addition, the spark plug wires should be checked carefully for fraying, cracking or holes and replaced if needed. Some vehicles have spark plug wires that are permanently mounted to the distributor cap. If so, the distributor cap will need to be replaced as well.
Even if the vehicle does not have the type of spark plug wires that are permanently mounted on the distributor cap, the distributor cap and the rotor, if the vehicle has these parts, should still be replaced during a thorough spring – time for an auto tune up.
For an older vehicle, a tune up should include the replacement of the points and rotor as well as the fuel filter. Many newer vehicles have a fuel injection system that requires little maintenance unless the fuel injectors become clogged. For vehicles manufactured prior to 1980, the timing of the ignition might need to be adjusted as well.
During the spring – time for an auto tune up, the valves should be checked and adjusted, if needed. In addition, the valve cover gasket needs to be replaced if there is oil on the top of the engine as this indicates that the valve cover gasket has a rip, hole or tear somewhere. A vehicle that is equipped with hydraulic valves will not require a valve adjustment although replacement of the valve cover gasket could still be deemed necessary.
All belts should be thoroughly checked and replaced. if necessary. Checking all fluids and, if needed, adding additional fluids to the appropriate levels is also necessary during a complete spring – time for an auto tune up. If the oil filter and oil have not been changed in 3,000 miles, it is wise to do so during this time.
A new air filter should be fitted onto the vehicle if it has been 15,000 miles since it was last changed. To ensure the smooth running of the vehicle, change the PCV (positive crankcase ventilation) valve, too. It is an easy and inexpensive part to replace. Check and service the battery, if necessary. This could mean adding water, if indicated, and cleaning the battery terminals, and the ends of the battery cables.
For those vehicles with manual transmissions, since it is spring – time for an auto tune up, check and adjust the transmission. This step is not necessary in vehicles with self adjusting manual transmissions, however.
Taking the time now to have a tune up this spring will help to ensure that a vehicle is running as smoothly and efficiently as possible. Consider it a long term investment in the care of a vehicle.