How to Tune Up a Car

Today, most car models hardly require any kind of scheduled maintenance apart from routine fluid changes thanks to many technological advancements. However, having a basic tune-up modern regularly can enhance the vehicle performance and save you a lot of money in the long run. Fortunately, this sort of simple maintenance task can be performed at home without any expertise or advanced skills. After reading this guide, you may be surprised how inexpensive and easy the process can be, and you can see how much you have left in your automotive budget for each service any given month by using a car loan repayment calculator to keep up with your regular payments.

Tune-up checks

Before starting the tune-up, you should check the overall condition of the engine and assess its current performance. These parts and accessories that need to be examined include dynamic compression or power balance, battery voltage, engine vacuum, fault codes, idle speed, and ignition timing. Apart from those performance inspections, belts and hoses should be also visually examined to ensure there are no mechanical problems that can affect the overall operation. In addition, all engine fluids such as brake fluid, power steering fluid, transmission fluid, coolant, and oil should also be checked to ensure that they are at the right level and in an acceptable condition or appearance. There should be no burning smell from the transmission fluid, no sludge in the oils, while the coolant should have a suitable amount of antifreeze without sediment or rust.

Replace major parts

If you don’t find any major fails in the tune-up checks, it is necessary to replace some parts for preventive maintenance. These include distributor cap and rotor; breather filter, PCV valve, air filter, and fuel filter; O2 sensors; windshield wipers; and especially the spark plugs. In general, the spark plugs should be periodically since the electrodes will wear each time a plug gets fired. When a high voltage current moves from one electrode to the others, it might wear away a little bit metal of both electrodes. At the same time, its sharp edges of these electrodes can also get dull and rounded. As a result, these parts can misfire under load and lead to some possible accidents. Therefore, it is recommended to perform this replacement after 45,000 miles of driving, when the spark plugs have fired from 60 to 70 million times.

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Clean other accessories

Once you have replaced all major parts, it’s time to clean the intake system and fuel injectors. In fact, the need for this task isn’t actually as great as it once was due to redesigned injectors and advanced fuel additives. But in those areas which are exposed to reformulated gas, injector clogging seems to happen and restrict the amount of gas delivering in every squirt. As a result, it might have a negative effect on the fuel/air mixture, which can lead to misfire and a gradual deterioration in your engine’s responsiveness and performance. Also, fuel deposits can accumulate on the back of the intake valves and cause cold hesitation issues in the engine. The only way to deal with this issue is to clean the valves and injectors. In general, it is recommended to perform this task after 50,000 miles on the road.

While regular maintenance seems to be an intimidating task for many people, taking charge of your own car can bring a satisfying and rewarding result. With some simple hand tools and good preparation, you can accomplish these straightforward and inexpensive tasks with several hours, thereby saving yourself a lot of money, time, and effort.