Tune Up Kit
Proper preventive maintenance is a key ingredient to your vehicle's overall health. This is why you'll need to regularly tune up your car. Fortunately, with the help of a tune up kit, you'll be able to do this routine maintenance task within the comforts of your own garage.
What's included in a tune up kit
Essentially, this kit is what you need when doing a basic car tune up. There are many types of tune up kits available, but a basic kit includes replacement ignition parts, a new distributor cap, replacement filters, hoses or belts, and fluids.
Tuning up your car
Basic maintenance involves the following tasks:
Oil level and quality inspection - Check your vehicle's oil level. If the dipstick indicates that the level is low, add more oil. Don't forget to take a closer look at the quality of oil when taking the dipstick out. Does the oil seem chunky? If it does, you most likely need to do an oil change, which is usually included in an engine tune up kit. Keep in mind that you need to change the oil when your car has reached 3,000 miles.
Tire inspection and rotation - Regularly inspecting your tires for signs of damage will help prevent getting a busted tire while on the road. During a routine maintenance, check the air pressure and the tread for signs of wear and tear. If the air pressure is too low, inflate the tires according to manufacturer's specifications to enjoy better handling and improved mileage. If the tread shows unusual or premature wear, take a closer look at the wheel and suspension assembly to find out the culprit.
To maximize your tires' lifespan, rotate them periodically by following the proper crossing pattern. Depending on the tread your tire has, you might have to switch the positioning and the side of the tire.
Other fluid level inspection . Aside from the oil level, you should also check your car's transmission, radiator, brake, windshield washer, and power steering fluid levels. Here are some tips:
- Transmission fluid . During inspection, this fluid should be mostly clear with a hinge of read. If your car has reached 100,000 miles, get a tune up kit that includes new transmission fluid.
- Radiator fluid . If you smell a sickly, sweet scent coming from the AC ducts while driving, you might have a coolant or radiator fluid leak. Another sign of a leak is an unusually low coolant level. Fix the source of the leak and refill the coolant tank ASAP.
- Brake fluid . Your car should never run on low brake fluid levels because this will cause serious brake assembly damage. If there's a leak, check the brake lines to find the source and fix it as soon as you can.
- Windshield washer fluid . Your car will still run even if the level of this fluid is low, but you'll want to refill it during routine maintenance to maximize the lifespan of your wipers.
- Power-steering fluid . If the level of this fluid is low, refill it immediately to enjoy better handling.
Filter, belt, and wire inspection . Other parts you need to inspect and replace if necessary are the air and fuel filters, distributor caps, spark plug wires, and the serpentine belt. If any of these parts show signs of serious wear and tear, replace them by installing the new parts included in a tune up kit.