Hot answers tagged

72

Engine oil does much more for an engine than lubricate. It provides cooling, cleaning, and a bunch of other chores. You already know engine function is degraded when you run out of oil. Let's see if we can run it down to make more sense for you how it happens. Let's say, for lack of argument, your engine is running with very little to no oil. The engine ...


24

The point of servicing any vehicle is to replace consumables that have a limited lifetime: oils (usually engine oil, but there could be other) filters spark plugs brake pads (very important!) miscellaneous (depending on vehicle it could be: timing belt, gaskets, hoses, cables) Apart from these there are other parts that are not necessarily part of the ...


19

In most engines, when you fill the oil, it drains into a reservoir on the bottom of the engine known as the oil pan. The tube for the dipstick goes right down into this reservoir to measure the level of the oil. The other important item located in this reservoir is the pick-up tube for the oil pump. As long as the pick-up tube for the pump stays under the ...


18

With way too much engine oil in the engine, the problem is that the crankshaft can hit the oil in the bottom of the crankcase when the engine is running. Since the crankshaft is spinning fast, even at idle, each time it slaps the surface of the oil, it will create some bubbles in the oil as the air just behind the spinning crankshaft lobe gets dragged under ...


17

tl dr: To improve the useful life of your vehicle. While vehicles seem to be lasting longer, there still isn't a perfect machine out there: they all need maintenance of some sort or another if you expect them to live a long and healthy life. There are three major purposes to having your vehicle serviced: Longevity: If you want to get the most out of your ...


12

Duplicating checks isn't a bad thing. I, personally, check everything (or at least, all that I can without specialist equipment) that the MOT checks, for one very simple reason - I can then fix it, if necessary, in my own time before the MOT check, reducing the risk of it failing. Otherwise, if you don't know about a fault until it's picked up on the MOT ...


11

The UK annual vehicle test (the MOT) is purely to verify that the vehicle is safe to run on the roads and is not going to cause an accident or extra damage... so the tyres have tread / the brakes and steering function to an acceptable level / the engine does not produce excessive amounts of emissions / the windows can be seen through / there are no sharp ...


10

This is not normal behavior of a typical mechanic. Most mechanics/shops will still continue to charge their normal hourly rate no matter if you bring in the parts or if they get you the parts. The only difference is, they will not warrant the parts you bring in. You may want to look at the fine print of why they are charging the extra $15/hr. If the reason ...


9

In general, at the very minimum, you will want to check air pressure in tires, and all fluid levels and ensure that they are at the proper levels. Also, checking the condition of the oil and possibly changing it if it is needed (on a trip that long, probably wouldn't hurt to go ahead and do that if it over halfway till the next one anyways). If staying ...


9

I see this completely normal and not a cause of concern. The service advisor's explanation is certainly a valid reason, but they could have needed to drive the car for a total of 19kms for many legitimate reasons: The service technician could not diagnose the source of the noise on his own, so he went back and picked up another service technician to help ...


8

If an engine is that full, it will pump oil through systems it shouldn't, such as the PCV system into the intake manifold. Piston rings, even in a fresh engine, always have at least a minimal amount of blow-by from combustion. Normally these combustion products pressurize the crankcase slightly and then vent through the PCV (Positive Crankcase Ventilation) ...


8

German here. The word "erneuert" always means that something has been replaced. The only remarkable exception is a "runderneuerter Reifen" i.e. a retreaded tire, though... even here something has been replaced. The term "überholt" literally means "overhauled" or "refurbished" Further more, mechanics here mostly just replace parts instead of fixing them, ...


8

The first place to look is your car handbook - somewhere near the back should be the service schedule, which will list which things need to be checked on each service. Usually a big table with the service intervals on one axis and the items on the other, with marks under each item and the corresponding interval. The next place always used to be the service ...


7

Disclaimer: I work with an older 202 straight 6 Holden engine in a landrover, so my perspective is somewhat vintage. However the basic underlying concepts are the same. Cause: Low oil in the oil pan, at the very bottom of the engine. Normally the oil should read right on the Full line on a dipstick, when the vehicle is level and the motor is cold and has ...


7

Clearly servicing an engine will allow it to do a lot more miles before it wears out. For example old oil does not protect the engine well. However in the UK the maths get interesting….. As most “basic” cars much over 5 years old has a low replacement cost and very few people drive more than 20K miles a year (most people with older cars drive closer to ...


7

A liter or two of oil in nine months might be a lot, or it might be quite normal. It really depends on the condition of the engine and how and how much you drive the car. The engine is continually burning a tiny amount of oil, so over time this will result in some oil loss. Also it sounds like you're not in the habit of checking your oil regularly, so it is ...


7

Firstly, you can have it done 1 month before the expiry date, minus 1 day and you will still preserve the full length of your MOT. This is done for convenience and to allow time for repairs. I always take mine at the earliest opportunity so I can plan for any potential problems. Example: "If your MOT runs out on 15 May, the earliest you can get an MOT to ...


6

Mechanics make money off of the parts they buy for you. Look for a small shop with 1-4 mechanics. They like business even if it's not the most profitable. They are about building a relationship with their customer. If you're cool and your mechanic is cool, they'll install just about anything that's legal for their regular rate. Keep going back to that ...


6

I can't disagree with mikes's answer, but I'd like to suggest an even stronger view: assuming that this is a car you'd like to keep for a while, treat it as if no service has ever been done. The age and mileage will then dictate what you need to check out. Find a list of regular car maintenance items (in your repair manual if you have one, or online), and go ...


6

Let's pick one example of a component that doesn't feature in the inspection* , but is worth servicing at the recommended intervals. The timing belt . This is the belt which drives the camshaft, which in turn opens the valves on the engine's cylinders at the right time. If this component fails, the pistons will collide with the valves and the entire engine ...


6

tl dr: Unless you have a leak somewhere in your manual transmission, leave it alone and don't worry about it. If you look at the maintenance schedule for Hondas, you'll find there's no schedule for changing standard transmission fluid. You have to inspect the fluid, but there's nothing for changing it. With all things for maintenance, you need to follow ...


5

The first thing I recommend is to not get a state required inspection sticker (if needed) from the seller. Many dealers will include it in the price or have a station that they use. You want an independent check of the emission status and safety. I always do an oil and filter change. Even if the oil looks clean, you have no idea if it is the right type, ...


5

The MOT only checks a specific set of things, as described in the link in Chenmunka's answer. Tyre pressure isn't one of them, but tyre condition and tread depth are. Some MOT stations (usually the smaller ones) will fix minor things as they go, big ones won't as they can charge you extra to do things afterwards! However - it is your responsibility (by law) ...


5

I can answer this because it has happened to me a few times. There are several different possibilities depending on the ambient temperature and how old the engine is. Here are three real scenarios that have happened with my 1996 Volvo 850: (1) When the oil gets low the first thing you might notice is more noise. Oil muffles the engine, so when oil gets low ...


5

Why? Well, money. Even if its $3, that counts as an upsell. They will probably sell the "engine flush" to most people. Raising the average sale by a fair amount. Follow the vehicle's manual. Don't give in to these offers.


5

Finding information on the service required: call a dealer and ask them. Look online at forums. Etc. How to tell if it's been neglected, that's the more important part of your question IMO. You can tell a lot from the car physically, more so in my experience than from service records. Service records are only as useful as the record keeper, and in my ...


5

This is something like buying a large farm at a great price with just one glitch: the owner tells you there may be a couple landmines hidden on the property somewhere. With this amount of lack of service, the vehicle risks having some serious engine wear that will show sooner or later. If servicing included oil changes, you'll have a fairly large risk of ...


5

Ah yes, those pesky little battery terminals. They ain't the same. The one labelled "+" (usually red) is connected to everything electrical in the car, while the one labelled "-" (usually black), only goes to a couple of bolts here and there. It would make sense, one would think, to disconnect the one connected to all the stuff, wouldn't it? Well, it doesn'...


5

Many modern cars have advanced traction control systems which aim to prevent a loss of control, most of these operate by adding computer control to each individual brake, with a central computer using sensor data to determine how much to brake each wheel. These systems are designed to fail in a way that allows your brakes to still work - they aren't simply ...


5

YES. A big Y-E-S. It's a huge safety issue. See, braking fluid absorbs(even attracts) water over time, not so much over usage, if at all. Brake fluid gets really hot, even more under sustained braking like when driving in the mountains. If there's water in the system, it'll try to evaporate. This causes vapor locks, pedal/braking pressure falls away, etc. ...


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