Car Tune up Tips for a Healthy Car
Regardless of the make and model of a vehicle, it should be tuned up every 30,000 miles; older vehicles will need to be serviced more frequently. A well-tuned car will offer better gas mileage and run without a hitch. The procedure is meant to address all the normal wear and tear concerns in the car. Many of these tune ups can be done at home without the need of an expensive mechanic.
The Filters, Spark Plugs and Valves
Dirty air and fuel filters can cause a restriction and should be replaced; this is one of the most important car tune up tips. The spark plugs and wires will also have to be changed since bad plugs can mar the fuel efficiency of a vehicle. The third in line are the vales of the vehicle which should be checked and adjusted; also, check the valve-cover gasket which should be replaced if any visible signs of cracks are seen. A typical sign of valve-cover leakage will be oil on top of the engine. If not corrected in time, this can lead to dangerously low levels of oil in the vehicle.
PVC, Distributor Cap and Rotor
Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) will also need to be replaced; a clogged breather filter will prevent the removal of the moisture generated as a result of combustion and the blow-by gases. This can cause faster breakdown of the engine oil and can greatly increase the build-up of sludge. The next component to check is the distributor cap which is comprised of two plastic components. The part easily succumbs to wear and may develop cracks with age and use; a cracked cap cannot prevent moisture from entering the engine assembly which can cause the corrosion of metal contacts that leads to misfiring.
The Oxygen Sensor
This is by far the most overlooked component in a tune up; the oxygen sensors are generally located in the exhaust assembly or before the catalytic converter. These devices are responsible for reading the ratio of air-to-fuel in the exhaust and sending the information to the car’s computer. So, if the sensor is malfunctioning, your engine can run too lean or too rich and you would not know about it. A mixture that is too rich will not only lead to lower fuel efficiency but will also cause you to fail an emissions test.
Clean the Other Sensors
Most fuel injected engines are offered with an assortment of sensors such as the mass airflow sense or the idle air control sensor. While the names of the devices may vary from one manufacturer to another, all of them measure the amount of air entering the engine assembly through the intake when the throttle is idle or opened. The inevitable accumulation of dust can interfere with the functioning of the sensor. Use a spray can of electric contact cleaner to clean the sensor.
Apart from these car tune up tips, you may also want to change the points and condensers in the distributor cap in older vehicles, while new vehicles will require an ignition timing adjustment; the clutch should also be adjusted in case of manual transmission vehicles.