Get proactive with preventative maintenance

The old adage “prevention is better than cure” is usually used when talking about our health but here at Tony’s Toys we believe that principle also applies when talking about the maintenance of vehicles.  

There are so many ways you can take care of your vehicle in between service appointments at Tony’s Toys. Fluid and filter changes, tire and battery checks and brake maintenance are all services you can do yourself at home that will help avoid bigger and more expensive repairs in the long term. 

Your vehicle(s) is probably one of the biggest financial investments you have made. If you care for it properly, it will deliver the performance, lasting value and enjoyment you need and expect.  We are here to help you achieve those goals.  Below we have provided just a few simple services you can do on your vehicle yourself to keep it running smoothly. Always remember to check your owner’s manual for the most accurate information relating to your vehicle.

Oil and Oil Filters

Oil is your engine’s life blood. It is a lubricant that keeps important engine parts from grinding against each other and destroying the engine. You can also damage your engine if you do not change your motor oil regularly as accumulated contaminants cause friction, rubbing parts together. You should aim to change your oil and oil filters every 3 months or 300 miles, whichever comes first.

Tires 

The only thing separating your vehicle from the road is its tires. They need to be properly inflated to do their job, as well as to lessen the chance of a blowout. You probably know how to add air to your tires but make sure you also know the correct tire pressure. You can find that information on a sign located on the driver’s door jamb or in the owner’s manual. 

Make sure you inflate your tires when they are cold (driven less than one mile) to get an accurate reading; otherwise, add 4 PSI to the recommended amount. You should check your tires every 3 months or 300 miles, whichever comes first.

Fluids 

Besides the engine oil, you also can and should check your vehicle’s radiator, transmission, power steering, brake, A/C coolant and washer fluid yourself.

Like motor oil, you check transmission fluid with a dipstick. You can assess the radiator, brake, power steering, coolant, and washer fluid levels by removing the related covers and visually inspecting each. These fluids should be checked between every 3 to 6 months.

Other Areas for DIY Maintenance

Your wiper blades, battery, and air filter are also important areas that you can check yourself. If the windows streak or the blades screech when you’re using your windshield wipers, it’s time for them to be replaced. You should check the condition of your wiper blades every 6 months or 6000 miles, whichever comes first.

The most important requirement for your vehicle’s battery is that it remains corrosion free. A wire brush along with a solution of water and baking soda will do the trick, and you can do this every 3 months or 3000 miles, whichever comes first.

When it comes to the air filter, you may need to replace it once or twice each year and you can do this at the same time that you change your oil. 

When it comes to your vehicle(s) a few minutes of preventative maintenance can save you hundreds of dollars in corrective maintenance. 

Maintaining your vehicle

This service interval schedule provides general guidelines for the regular maintenance of passenger cars, minivans, pick-ups and SUVs. (Source: Car Care Council)

Check Frequently

  • Dashboard Indicator Lights On
  • Lights
  • Tire Inflation and Condition
  • Windshield Washer Fluid
  • Engine Oil Level

3 months or 3,000 miles

  • Automatic Transmission Fluid
  • Battery and Cables
  • Belts
  • Dashboard Indicator Light On
  • Engine Air Filter
  • Engine Oil
  • Exhaust
  • Hoses
  • Lights
  • Power Steering Fluid
  • Tire Inflation and Condition
  • Windshield Washer Fluid

6 months or 6,000 miles

  • Automatic Transmission Fluid
  • Battery and Cables
  • Belts
  • Chassis Lubrication
  • Dashboard Indicator Light On
  • Engine Air Filter
  • Engine Oil
  • Exhaust
  • Hoses
  • Lights
  • Power Steering Fluid
  • Tire Inflation and Condition
  • Windshield Washer Fluid
  • Wiper Blades

9 months or 9,000 miles

  • Automatic Transmission Fluid
  • Battery and Cables
  • Belts
  • Dashboard Indicator Light On
  • Engine Air Filter
  • Engine Oil
  • Exhaust
  • Hoses
  • Lights
  • Power Steering Fluid
  • Tire Inflation and Condition
  • Windshield Washer Fluid

12 months or 12,000 miles

  • Automatic Transmission Fluid
  • Battery and Cables
  • Belts
  • Brakes
  • Cabin Air Filter
  • Chassis Lubrication
  • Dashboard Indicator Light On
  • Coolant (Antifreeze)
  • Engine Air Filter
  • Engine Oil
  • Exhaust
  • Hoses
  • Lights
  • Power Steering Fluid
  • Steering and Suspension
  • Tire Inflation and Condition
  • Wheel Alignment
  • Windshield Washer Fluid
  • Wiper Blades

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