Author Topic: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?  (Read 873 times)

wcschenk

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Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« on: November 05, 2023, 09:41:54 AM »
Looking for how the more seasoned and mechanically inclined mustacians take care of their vehicles.

I have a 2012 Nissan Quest SV that I bought 3 summers ago in 2021. Great mini van, only had 33k, the previously owners were an elder couple who had all the maintenance done at a dealership.

My standard maintenance right now is :

Before every road trip or every 3 months:
-check fluids
-check tire pressure
-vacuum interior, wipe down dash and plastics, amoral

Every October:
-Oil change (myself) with "20k synthetic, high mileage" oil. I use high mileage because of the age of the car, I figure my seals could use the additives. Usually we drive 11-13k miles a year.
-Use highest end fuel filter I can, given I only change the oil annually.
-Reapply undercar spray (rust inhibitor) while it is on jack stands
-Add a carb cleaner to my gas tank, very likely this doesn't do much, but why leave it chance if it is only $5.

Every OTHER October:
-Change the cabin air filter
-Change air filter


Now the car has 66k miles and coming up on the mileage point for suggested fluid flushes and hence my question....do you all do the following:

-Replace brake fluid at 60k miles? (I am assuming this means a flush and not top off)

-Transmission services every 80k miles? (not even sure what this means to be honest)

-Flush transfer case fluid every 60k miles?

-Flush coolant every 60k miles?

-Flush differential fluid / serve every 60k miles?

-Power steering fluid flush every 80k miles?

I don't think I have ever done any of the above, but I have also never had a vehicle last over 160k miles (so that could obviously be why lol)

Also, if your feeling generous with time?

Think I can push back the 60k maintenance events to 80k and just do it all at roughly the same time (obviously some of them will be done by mechanics)?

Should I do oil changed more frequently in your opinion? I definitely drive well under 20k annually, but is a year pushing it too long for synthetic oil?

Should i be waxing the car every 6 months to reduce the likelihood of rush / keep the paint in better condition?  There are 1 or 2 small spots rust spots I have taken care of myself, for the most part no rust and I live in Buffalo NY, so we use salt in the winter.

Any maintenance things I am missing that cool lengthen my vehicles life?




Sandi_k

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2023, 10:21:16 AM »
So it's 11 years old, and has never had the brake fluid, radiator, power steering fluid, differential or transfer case flushed? I'd do it all.

These fluids attract water, so it's not just a matter of the fluids breaking down over time.

The only other things on my list that are not on yours:

- Replace rubber hoses.
- Replace thermostat when you flush the radiator.
- Replace the PCV valve.

I had a 2010 Lexus RX350 that I had 260k miles on when I sold it. So yes, I keep up with the maintenance.

cincystache

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2023, 11:11:58 AM »
PTF mainly but I agree with Sandi thus far.

Do all your fluids and then stick to a time/mileage schedule going forward. The mileage is misleading given the first owner put very few annual miles on the vehicle and most intervals are assuming the standard 12,000 miles per year. I wouldn't wait until 80k to do the fluids.

I check my engine oil level each time I put gas in the car to make sure I'm not leaking/burning oil to the point where I'm low.

Good on you for doing your own maintenance.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2023, 12:31:49 PM »
What does your owners manual say? Just follow that.

Plugra

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2023, 04:15:45 PM »
First of all, just focus on the maintenance that is shown in the manual.

Having said that ...

Brake fluid should be totally replaced from time to time.

Don't bother "flushing" coolant, transmission fluid, etc. For some reason, humans get these compulsions to "flush" the bad fluids from their bodies, their cars.  It's not rational. Unless you have a specific reason to flush them, an occasional drain and refill is sufficient. 

As for the carburetor cleaner, umm, does your car even have a carburetor or does it have fuel injection?  Just asking.

snowracerh

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2023, 05:35:13 PM »
I'm aggressive on maintenance and since doing so, never had to tear into an engine or transmission. Never any issues with the auxiliary stuff like water and power steering pump. Ounce of prevention is greater than a pound of cure! I run all synthetic and no, I don't change oil at 3k (usually 6-8k)

Sent from my SM-G986U using Tapatalk


sonofsven

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2023, 11:08:00 AM »
Yes, I do those maintenance items on schedule per the manual, and yes, you should, too.
I'm dealing right now with a 2000 Toyota Avalon in excellent condition, garaged, one owner, all of the options. It cost over $29k in 2000!
Unfortunately, the owner was lax on the oil changes and the engine has the dreaded sludge.
So a beauty of a car, one of the best Toyota ever made, with a bum engine due to lack of maintenance.

Paper Chaser

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2023, 11:33:04 AM »
You're not changing your engine oil frequently enough. Spend the money and change your oil twice per year. ~$50/yr more in oil changes is cheap insurance against a $3500+ engine replacement.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2023, 11:41:32 AM »
Yes, I do those maintenance items on schedule per the manual, and yes, you should, too.
I'm dealing right now with a 2000 Toyota Avalon in excellent condition, garaged, one owner, all of the options. It cost over $29k in 2000!
Unfortunately, the owner was lax on the oil changes and the engine has the dreaded sludge.
So a beauty of a car, one of the best Toyota ever made, with a bum engine due to lack of maintenance.
Hey, I'm in the middle of fixing a car with a similarly-neglected engine.  It's actually been a pretty good experience, as I've been doing it with my son.  There's a lot of labor involved, but the parts cost for fixing such a car may be almost negligible.  For us, it's a $30 set of piston rings, a $35 head gasket set (hey, you're taking apart a whole ton of stuff, you might as well freshen all the gaskets as you put it back together!), and a few other odds and ends.  It *does* help that I've accumulated a decent set of tools over the years. There's a lot of labor involved, especially if you don't know what you're doing, and you might have to get the head resurfaced ($150?), but you'll end up with a basically-new engine at the end of it.  And we know what well-maintained Toyota engines can do.

roomtempmayo

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2023, 01:13:35 PM »
So it's 11 years old, and has never had the brake fluid, radiator, power steering fluid, differential or transfer case flushed? I'd do it all.

Me too, and then stick to the intervals in the manual. 

It seems like the mileage recommendations for fully synthetic oil have gotten shorter in the past five years.  When synthetic first came out, there was a lot of talk about it being good for 10k, maybe even longer.  Now both of my mechanics are saying 5-6k, or one year.

As for doing the fluids yourself, recovery and disposal aren't always simple.  Sometimes it's worth it to make that stuff someone else's problem while also not killing the neighbor's cat with the antifreeze you leaked on your driveway.

parkerk

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2023, 01:24:47 PM »
First of all, just focus on the maintenance that is shown in the manual.

Having said that ...

Brake fluid should be totally replaced from time to time.

Don't bother "flushing" coolant, transmission fluid, etc. For some reason, humans get these compulsions to "flush" the bad fluids from their bodies, their cars.  It's not rational. Unless you have a specific reason to flush them, an occasional drain and refill is sufficient. 

As for the carburetor cleaner, umm, does your car even have a carburetor or does it have fuel injection?  Just asking.

I'd even go further and say that flushing systems that have never been flushed before can be detrimental. Some of the gunk that builds up tends to be in joints and seals, and flushing it out aggressively can actually cause leaks - picture trying to remove a sticker that's fully bonded to paper vs. one that's freshly placed. If the gunk is there long enough it becomes structurally integral!

Like Plugra says just drain and replace, no matter what the guy at Jiffy Lube tries to sell tell you.

sonofsven

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2023, 04:11:59 PM »
Yes, I do those maintenance items on schedule per the manual, and yes, you should, too.
I'm dealing right now with a 2000 Toyota Avalon in excellent condition, garaged, one owner, all of the options. It cost over $29k in 2000!
Unfortunately, the owner was lax on the oil changes and the engine has the dreaded sludge.
So a beauty of a car, one of the best Toyota ever made, with a bum engine due to lack of maintenance.
Hey, I'm in the middle of fixing a car with a similarly-neglected engine.  It's actually been a pretty good experience, as I've been doing it with my son.  There's a lot of labor involved, but the parts cost for fixing such a car may be almost negligible.  For us, it's a $30 set of piston rings, a $35 head gasket set (hey, you're taking apart a whole ton of stuff, you might as well freshen all the gaskets as you put it back together!), and a few other odds and ends.  It *does* help that I've accumulated a decent set of tools over the years. There's a lot of labor involved, especially if you don't know what you're doing, and you might have to get the head resurfaced ($150?), but you'll end up with a basically-new engine at the end of it.  And we know what well-maintained Toyota engines can do.

That might be in my future. For now I'm going to pour a few "engine rebuild kits in a can" through and drop the pan a few more times and just drive it. I might just try to find a junkyard engine.
I actually have another 1MZ-FE in another 2000 Avalon that has low miles but I'm putting that Avalon back together for my daughter after a small accident. I'll be on the lookout for a replacement engine in the meantime. The universe will provide!
Good for you for working with your son! It's great to learn the lesson that things can be repaired.

TreeLeaf

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2023, 04:32:18 PM »
I'm sort of lazy and just follow the recommended maintenance schedule in the owners manual.

I'm sure there are tons of things I could do in addition to this, but the car is...*checks calculator* 0.18% of my networth.

When I had less money I did more preventative type of maintenance, but money has made me care less about my car and more about other things like my health, family, friends, etc.

Sandi_k

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2023, 09:22:56 AM »
What does your owners manual say? Just follow that.

I've never seen an owner's manual that includes replacing the thermostat, replacing the rubber hoses, or replacing the PCV valve.

simonsez

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Re: Do you do these vehicle maintenances? Should I?
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2023, 10:32:42 AM »
I'm sort of lazy and just follow the recommended maintenance schedule in the owners manual.

I'm sure there are tons of things I could do in addition to this, but the car is...*checks calculator* 0.18% of my networth.

When I had less money I did more preventative type of maintenance, but money has made me care less about my car and more about other things like my health, family, friends, etc.
I share the bolded sentiment with you.  However, now that I'm not a poor college student just hoping nothing major would happen to my vehicle, I do more to take care of my vehicle (which does cost a little more $ up front) so I am not broken down on the road and can get from Point A to B reliably, and that includes seeing family and friends.  Not sure about physical health, though there is some level of effort required to fix things yourself on a car, but I love the mental health aspect of feeling confident in the reliability of my vehicle.

When I had less money I did more preventative type of maintenance

Unless I'm misunderstanding what you said, I'm not understanding why having more money would lead to less preventative maintenance on a car.  Even if you don't want to do it yourself, you could just pay for the preventative maintenance.  To each their own.