Today’s cars and trucks are better engineered and better built than at anytime since the first one rolled out of a workshop more than 125 years ago. Kia provides some of the best warranty coverage in the business, but to keep your ride running safely and reliably for years to come, you still need to take care of the small things along the way.
Following the recommended maintenance and service schedule won’t cost you much time and cash as the years go, and it has the potential to save you thousands of dollars down the road. The schedule for your Kia can be found in the maintenance section of the owner’s manual. If you don’t have the manual handy, you can find it online at www.kia.com/#/owners.
The most frequent and easy service items should be taken care of every 5,000 miles – engine oil, tires and brakes. Every engine needs lubrication to keep the metal parts moving freely against each other. Over time, heat, moisture and other contaminants reduce the effectiveness of your engine’s oil. Replacing the oil and filter in a timely manner will keep engine friction to a minimum, enhance reliability and reduce fuel consumption.
Your Kia’s tires and brakes are critical for safe and enjoyable handling, and are subject to wear that reduces their effectiveness over time. While the old oil is draining from your engine, it’s a perfect opportunity to check the tread depth of the tires and look for uneven wear, which can be a sign of other problems.
Excessive wear on either the inner or the outer shoulders of a tire’s tread can indicate a wheel alignment problem, which could be caused by hitting a curb or pothole. If not corrected, this can cause handling problems and premature tire wear. Excess wear on both shoulders of the tire indicates an underinflated tire while wear in the center can be caused by overinflation.
In addition to the tires, one of the most fundamental elements to the safety of your car or truck is the brakes. It only takes a few minutes to check the thickness of the brake pads and the condition of the rotors. When the linings become thin, they should be replaced, and if grooves form in the rotors, rotors should be machined or replaced.
On modern vehicles, brakes often do much more than just bring things to a halt. Brakes play a critical role in both traction and electronic stability control. When wheelspin is detected, traction control systems reduce engine output and activate the brakes on the drive wheels to help maximize grip. The brakes can also be applied to individual wheels by the stability control system to help keep the car going wherever the driver points the steering wheel.
In addition to engine oil, tires and brakes, the 5,000-mile service interval should also include a multi-point inspection of items like the accessory drive belts and lights, and a topping off of fluids.
At every 15,000-mile interval, your Kia’s service visit should include a tire rotation, and tires should also be balanced to help maintain a smooth ride. Engines need to breathe to burn gasoline efficiently, so the air filter should be replaced when it gets blocked up with dust and dirt.
Dirt, bugs and other items that accumulate on windshields also contribute to the wear of the wiper blades, so wiper blades should be replaced at least once a year.
Every 20,000 miles, a service technician should adjust the accessory drive belts and replace the fluid in the differential. When 30,000 miles have passed, the cooling system should be flushed and fresh coolant should be added to prevent corrosion and keep the engine from overheating.
At the same time, the transmission and battery should be checked out and serviced as needed to maintain smooth shift quality and reliable starts in any weather conditions.
It’s easy to ignore regular maintenance of your Kia, but you shouldn’t. It’s not expensive and it doesn’t take much time to keep your vehicle running reliably for years. Stop in today and let our technicians do what they do best – keep your car in top shape for many more years.