April is National Car Care Month, and Kia wants to remind you of the importance of performing regular maintenance on your ride to keep it running reliably, safely and efficiently for many years to come.
Regular maintenance is something that too many drivers ignore at their peril. Having a professional Kia service technician look over your vehicle now can help you avoid thousands of dollars in unplanned repairs down the road.
“As winter gives way to the warmer weather of spring, this is also the ideal time to take care of wear and tear caused by driving through ice, snow and salt,” said John Crowe, Vice President of Service and Aftersale Operations for Kia Motors America. “Many Kia dealers offer spring service specials including deals on detailing.”
Winter is one of the toughest times of the year on your vehicle, and there are plenty of little things you can do to get ready for summer road trips. Drivers who use winter tires should swap them for summer or all-season rubber at this time of year. Even if your tires don’t need to be replaced, this is also a great time of year to do a tire rotation to even out the wear on the rubber and make the tires last longer.
With the tires off, a service technician should take the opportunity to check the brakes, brake lines and steering and suspension components. If the brake pads are worn, they should be replaced, and the rotors should be examined for grooves or warping. If the rotors aren’t smooth and even, they should be either machined, if they have enough thickness, or replaced.
The slippery conditions of winter can make it a lot easier to slide into curbs, and late winter often produces serious potholes. In either case, your vehicle’s suspension can be knocked out of alignment or rims can be bent, leading to handling problems or rough ride conditions. A misalignment can also cause excessive tire wear, as well as more drag that makes your vehicle use more fuel.
The combination of cold, ice and road salt also eats up your windshield wiper blades, so they end up doing little more than streaking the water when it rains rather than actually wiping. Wiper blades should usually be replaced twice a year with spring and fall being the ideal times.
Car Care Month is also a perfect time to get an oil and filter change. Replacing the oil according to the recommended maintenance schedule in the owner’s manual will help prevent sludge buildup and reduce internal friction. As a result, your engine won’t have to work as hard, will be more fuel-efficient and will last longer.
While the old oil is being drained, all belts and hoses under the hood should be inspected for stretching and cracks. Old belts and hoses should be replaced, so you don’t get stranded with an overheated engine or no electrical power.
Engine oil isn’t the only important fluid in your vehicle. Coolant, washer fluid, brake fluid and power steering fluid should all be checked and topped off as needed. If your vehicle’s maintenance schedule calls for a more thorough cooling system service at your current mileage, have it flushed and filled with fresh coolant before the weather heats up.
Winter weather can leave your vehicle with an accumulation of road salt and other grime, both inside and out. Have your vehicle thoroughly washed, especially the nooks and crannies on the underside where salt can accumulate and cause early corrosion. An interior detailing will make your ride sparkle and feel like new, so it’s more pleasant to drive.
“The professional service technicians at all Kia dealers are trained by Kia Motors America to know what to check and how to fix anything on your vehicle,” said Crowe. “Any new parts they install will be genuine Kia components certified to work on your vehicle and covered by a full warranty.”
National Car Care Month is a great time to schedule an appointment for all-important vehicle maintenance and service. Some basic maintenance today can help improve your safety on the road, improve the durability of your ride and improve your gas mileage. Stop by and let us help.