What is the regular maintenance schedule?
A car is made up of thousands of components and is designed to travel hundreds of thousands of kilometres. You will have come across perfectly running historic cars. But while some parts are almost eternal, others gradually deteriorate and must be replaced. Car maintenance is a control procedure that must be carried out regularly, according to the scheduled timetable, to have a perfectly functioning and safe car.
Regular car maintenance aims to assess the condition of the most frequently used car parts, which are most subject to wear and tear. This way, the vehicle can be driven confidently, even on long journeys. Regular servicing also extends the life of the car. Moreover, thanks to these periodic checks, the car owner also manages to save a considerable amount of money in the long run, as continuous maintenance makes it possible to avoid the sudden breakage of certain elements, providing for their replacement or repair before they can affect the functioning of other components, which would, for obvious reasons, lead to sudden additional expenses.
What does regular car maintenance include?
The inspection process is carried out on the entire car, starting with an external inspection and then focusing on the elements inside. Inspecting the condition of the engine compartment, gearbox, braking system, ignition system, shock absorbers, suspension, and tyres follows this. The checks are completed by replacing some filters used in various operations and an engine oil change. The mechanic also assesses the gearbox oil’s condition and decides whether it needs to be changed.
Servicing includes inspections and tightening that should not be underestimated. The stresses and vibrations to which a car is subjected can cause some bolts to loosen. Temperature changes can affect rubber parts that need to be checked periodically.
Why do regular car maintenance?
Ignoring the regular maintenance schedule can be tempting, thinking that routine vehicle maintenance can be an additional cost and a waste of time. Respecting the maintenance schedule that the manufacturer drew up when designing the car serves to re-establish the best working conditions for each mechanism that makes a car work.
In practice, by neglecting regular servicing, you expose yourself to almost guaranteed serious breakdowns and an unexpected and expensive repair bill, including the major inconveniences and dangers of a car breakdown.
Playing with Lady Luck for your safety and that others on the road is not and never will be a good idea.
But why did we broach this subject? We will never tire of telling you how important your car’s regular maintenance is, but that is not the main reason for this article today. We want to show you the engine failures caused by poor maintenance. Luckily, our customer arrived at the workshop before anything serious could happen.
A real-life example of poor maintenance
Our customer arrived with a BMW that was producing an unpleasant rattling noise. Our team of experts quickly got to work and began dismantling the upper part of the engine, suspecting that the timing chain was the culprit. Upon further investigation, we discovered that the engine had not been serviced for a long time, resulting in several wear-related issues. The most noticeable of these issues was the engine’s rattling sound.
After a thorough inspection, we identified that one of the guides was broken, and the chain was extremely slackened, causing the engine to rattle badly.
To make matters worse, the oil was black and dirty, and there was a significant oil leak from the cam cover.
Upon closer inspection, we found the chain rattling against the cam cover, causing a crack.
Fortunately for him, he came to our workshop on time. Can you imagine what would have happened if the chain had snapped or blown off when he was driving?
These issues result from poor servicing, leading to engine failure and faster parts wear.
The inevitable degradation that engine oil undergoes over time and after several miles travelled is a relatively underestimated phenomenon. We must remember that the oil’s primary purpose is to adhere to moving surfaces and eliminate friction, forming a protective film. But oil also has other no less important tasks:
– cooling moving parts by transferring heat from the hottest points to the coldest areas (e.g. heat exchangers). In this way, oil contributes to the cooling action of water (or air with air cooling);
– protect internal metal surfaces from corrosion, rust, water ingress, and oxidation;
– ensure the seal between the piston and cylinder, preventing the escape of combustion gases.
Oil degradation results primarily from the considerable thermal stress it is subjected to inside the engine. This encourages oxidation of the charge, breakage of the lubricant’s molecular bonds and evaporation. Added to this is the harmful polluting action of carbon residues, unburned and burnt hydrocarbons and condensation water. Oil diluted in this way can no longer dissipate heat, and hardened sludge is formed, which tends to clog the lubrication circuit. In addition, the presence of these pollutants can distort real oil consumption as the level measured in the sump will appear regular. Chemical technology applied to lubricants has introduced special detergent additives to combat these harmful phenomena.
But even top-quality synthetic engine oils of the latest generation cannot work miracles if regular maintenance is neglected.
Some people wait for a warning light to come on or a malfunction to occur before taking the car in for a service. If you don’t take the car in for a service or do it with poor materials, you subject the car to stressful operation. It increases wear and tear, reduces components’ efficiency, and increases fuel consumption. The risk of facing higher expenses for repairs and breakdowns becomes higher.
That is why it’s important to have your engine serviced regularly. Regular car servicing is essential to maintaining your vehicle’s performance, safety, and longevity. While it may seem unnecessary, neglecting to service your car can cost you more in the long run.
On our Youtube Channel can be seen the video about this engine.