Car Maintenance and Tech Tips
Regular vehicle maintenance means keeping all the systems and features functioning as closely as possible to the manufacturer’s original design intentions. Routine auto maintenance should be an ongoing process that begins when the vehicle is new because any machine that receives use will also accumulate wear. Proactively tending to your vehicle’s maintenance needs is likely to help your vehicle start, run, and stop as the manufacturer intended. This will ensure you get the maximum amount of performance, reliability, and service life out of your vehicle. Periodic inspections of the vehicle’s systems are the easiest way to monitor its health.
Here are 9 common auto systems and components that should be regularly maintained on your vehicle, as well as a helpful Tech Tip::
Oil and Oil Filters
The new 5.3 L and 6.2 L V8 Eco Tec3 engines available in the new 2014 Silverado 1500 and Sierra 1500 trucks are the most fuel-efficient and technologically advanced engines in the full-size truck market. These engines require the use of dexos1 0W20 engine oil to support these technologies, which help deliver the engine’s improved fuel economy. These new engines are the first to specify the 0W20 oil, and this oil is available at Poorman Auto Supply !!
A dirty air filter in your car or truck prevents the engine from breathing properly, which can decrease fuel mileage and performance and make the engine work harder than it needs to. Let your vehicle breathe! Change the air filter in your vehicle once a year or when recommended in your owner’s manual. Changing the filter more often may be necessary if you drive in dirty or dusty conditions.
If your vehicle is equipped with a cabin air filter, change that too. A dirty cabin air filter reduces the airflow through the vehicle’s ventilation system. Cabin air filters help keep pollen, fumes, smoke, and other materials from reaching the inside of a vehicle and help you breathe easier. See your vehicle owner’s manual to determine if your vehicle is equipped with a cabin air filter.
Brakes and Pads
Often, the brakes on your car or truck have wear indicators that produce noise when it’s time to change the pads. Usually, this includes squealing brakes or high-pitched noises when you press on the brakes. Another sign that your brakes need replacement is if you notice your brakes “feel” different when you press on them. This might include needing to press the brake pedal harder as well as other noticeable differences. Be sure to inspect the brake system for your vehicle on a regular basis.
Charging and Battery
Extreme heat and cold are hard on car batteries. If your vehicle’s battery is a few years old, test the battery and charging system to be sure your battery has the power to start your vehicle when you need it most. By testing the charging system, you’ll ensure your alternator is recharging the battery as it should.
Drive belts are essential for keeping your vehicle’s electrical (alternator), cooling (water pump), and air-conditioning systems running at top performance. Look at your engine belts periodically and replace them if you find them to be worn down, cracked or broken. Changing your drive belts before they break will ensure you’re less likely to become stranded by a broke down vehicle.
When your vehicle’s cooling system is clogged or low on fluid it can cause tremendous damage to the engine and other components under the hood. Get into the habit of checking your vehicle’s fluid levels regularly. To keep your car or truck running at top performance, change the fluid or flush the cooling system as recommended in your owner’s manual.
Don’t wait for a rainy day to discover that your windshield wiper blades are worn down and needing replaced. Worn wiper blades can hinder visibility in rainy or snowy conditions. When you notice your wiper blades are cracked, chipped, causing streaks or making a “chatter” noise as they move across your windshield, it’s time to replace them.
Ignition and Spark Plugs
Though many spark plugs are designed to last 100,000 miles in your vehicle, they can still get dirty or fail prematurely. Ignition wires lose insulating ability over time, and the connection to the spark plug or ignition coil can degrade as well. Get in the habit of inspecting your ignition system and spark plugs to avoid conditions that may result in poor engine performance or reduced fuel economy.
Shocks and Struts
The suspension system affects your vehicle’s steering, braking power, and stability. That’s why it’s so important to inspect these components regularly and to replace parts when they become worn and dangerous! It’s also important to inspect other chassis items periodically, such as tie-rod ends, control arms, and ball joints. Keeping these components in tip-top shape will ensure a smooth and safe ride.
For 2007-2014 Suburban, Tahoe, Yukon and Escalade models. The power liftgate may be inoperable when using any of the switches or the Remote Keyless Entry transmitter with the ignition in the OFF position.
To correct this condition, check for power on the Accesory Wake Up Data Line going to the ECM and the TCM. With the key in the accessory position, check for battery voltage on circuit 5985 going to pin 18 (2007 and 2010-2014 models) or pin 31 (2008-2009 models) of connector 1 to the ECM and Pin 11 or Pin 9 to the TCM. If no voltage is present with the key in the accessory position, check for a wiring or pin fit concern.