When money and time are tight, it can be tempting to put off car maintenance. After all, it’s still running, right? Who cares if there’s a little rattle, or a check engine light that won’t go off?
Unfortunately, this can be an expensive and dangerous mistake! To give you an idea of just how important maintenance is, we’ve collected some “worst case scenarios” for skipping key maintenance procedures. We’ve also gathered some average maintenance costs from the RepairPal app (available for iOS and Android) for an average priced car (a 2008 Ford Focus.)
What if you never changed your oil?
Oil picks up grime from combustion and any dirt that gets sucked in your engine. Naturally, it gets pretty nasty. If you avoid changing the oil, it stops lubricating your engine and turns this grime into thick deposits. This can cause overheating, worse gas mileage, or complete engine failure. Here’s a photo example from a BMW 3-series. Worst case scenarios include:
- Head gasket failure ($1538+)
- Oil pump failure ($713+)
- Oil pan replacement ($294+)
What if you don’t change your timing belt on time?
A timing belt keeps all those moving bits in your engine from crashing into each other. Some cars have chains, which are maintenance free. If you have a belt, it typically has to be replaced every 60,000 – 100,000 miles. Most cars also have interference engines, which means if this belt snaps, your engine is done. Usually, this means you have to buy a new car.
A timing belt repair usually costs around $600 – $1000, so it’s not cheap. It’s still cheaper than buying a new car, so save up for it!
What if you don’t get an alignment?
As your car drives over bumps and potholes, the suspension gradually gets a little crooked. You’ll notice this if you’re going straight and your steering wheel veers left or right. An alignment fixes this problem, and ensures your tires and suspension wear evenly. Avoiding an alignment can mean:
- New tires ($350+)
- Axle replacement ($485+)
- Wheel bearing replacement ($620+)
What if you ignore those squealing brakes?
The importance of your car’s brakes is obvious. The brake pads are the most frequently replaced brake part. But once these pads wear down, it’s not just a safety issue: the rest of your brake assembly wears down much quicker. If you don’t replace pads on time, you might also pay for:
- New calipers ($305+)
- New rotors ($276+)
As you can see, maintenance is an annoying but necessary expense. When you buy a car, make sure you budget ahead for its maintenance! It’s an investment that protects your valuable purchase.
Come in to any of our five Fast Lube Plus locations between September 1, 2015 and January 31, 2015 and get a FREE NFL Training Tee with your next oil change of 5 quarts or more!
Click the image below to find out more details. See you at the shop!
THIS OFFER HAS EXPIRED AS OF AUGUST, 31, 2015. STAY TUNED FOR MORE OFFERS!
Because it was so popular last time – we’re running the Facebook promo again! Please share with your friends and family. Coupon valid July 13 – August 31, 2015.
**Offer not valid for those who entered the last Facebook Page Promo. Please stay tuned for other discounts and promotions**
PURCHASE: A participating Castrol® oil change at a service center between 6/1/15 – 8/31/15.
RECEIVE: By mail, a check in the qualified savings amount made payable to your oil change service center for use off your next Castrol oil change service. $5 for Castrol® GTX®, $10 for Castrol® GTX® High Mileage, $10 for Castrol® GTX® MAGNATEC®, $10 for Castrol® Tection Extra, $10 for Castrol® Hypuron, $15 for Castrol® EDGE®.
Please allow four (4) weeks to receive your check by mail.
To redeem this offer online, CLICK HERE.
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This offer has expired as of 5.15.15. Please stay tuned to our site for new offers!
Fast Lube Plus is proud to announce the following team members as ASE Certified. Congrats Team!
Cary Fast Lube Plus
- Tommy Pendergrass – ASE Certified Service Writer Technician
- Lloyd Tew – ASE Certified Engine Repair Technician
- Jeremy Harden – ASE Certified Brakes and Suspension Technician
Apex Fast Lube Plus
- Daniel Taylor – ASE Certified Brakes Technician
Holly Springs Fast Lube Plus
- Nate Moore – ASE Certified Brakes and Suspension Technician
- BJ Pesta – ASE Certfied Master Technician
Garner Fast Lube Plus
- Eddie Wilson – ASE Certified Maintenance and Light Repair Technician
Morrisville Fast Lube Plus
- Dan Beavers – ASE Certified Brakes Technician
What is ASE?
ASE, is short for the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. Since 1972 ASE, an independent non-profit organization, has worked to improve the quality of vehicle repair and service by testing and certifying automotive professionals.
What Does ASE Do?
ASE promotes excellence in automotive repair and service. over 300,000 Automotive Technician and Service Professionals hold ASE Certifications. ASE Certified Technicians work in every part of the automotive service industry. We certify the automotive technician and service professionals not the auto shops.
Why Does ASE Exist?
To protect the automotive service consumer, shop owner, and the automotive technician. We test and certify automotive professionals so that shop owners and service customers can better gauge a technicians level of expertise before contracting the technician’s services. We certify the automotive technician professional so they can offer tangible proof of their technical knowledge. ASE Certification testing means peace of mind for auto service managers, customers.
How Does ASE Certification Work?
In addition to passing an ASE Certification test, automotive technicians must have two years of on the job training or one year of on the job training and a two-year degree in automotive repair to qualify for certification.
The exams are not easy. Only two out of every three test-takers pass on their first attempt. To remain ASE certified professionals must be retest every five years to keep up with ever advancing automotive technology.
Fast Lube Plus is making a lot of changes to benefit our clients in 2015 and just the first of many is a new version of our website at FastLubePlus.com!
The new website was created to not only be easier to navigate and find the most important information to you, but was created to be fully mobile-ready!
We look forward to your feedback on the site and hope you continue to return to find out more about all we have in store for this year.
Let us say thanks for reading by offering you $10 off your next oil change in February. Simply print out the coupon below.
We’ll see you soon!
With summer ending and the start of school upon us, drivers need to do their part to keep kids safe as they walk and bike to school. Whether you are taking your kids to school or just driving through a school zone, you can do your part to keep kids safe.
Follow the tips below to make sure you keep your children safe while walking and biking to school.
Simple Reminders for Drivers:
- Slow down and be especially alert in the residential neighborhoods and school zones
- Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians and on curbs
- Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully
- Watch for children on and near the road in the morning and after school hours
- Reduce any distractions inside your car so you can concentrate on the road and your surroundings. Put down your phone and don’t talk or text while driving
Reminder for your kids:
- They should cross the street with an adult until they are at least 10 years old
- Cross the street at corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks
- Never run out into the streets or cross in between parked cars
- Make sure they always walk in front of the bus where the driver can see them
With more vehicles on the roads, it’s important to get your ride checked out to meet the demands of increased traffic.
To calculate how often you should have your oil changed, you can consult your driver’s manual or visit checkyournumber.org.
Manufacturers suggest you change oil more often for “severe” driving conditions.
But what constitutes “severe” conditions?
- Drive on short trips of less than 5 miles in normal temperatures or less than 10 miles in freezing temperatures.
- Drive in hot weather stop-and-go traffic.
- Drive at low speeds of less than 50 miles per hour for long distances.
- Drive on roads that are dusty, muddy or have salt, sand or gravel spread on the surface.
- Tow a trailer, carrying a camper (if a pickup truck) or transport items on a roof rack or in a car-top carrier.
These conditions attract moisture and dust into the engine. If the engine isn’t run long enough to burn off the accumulated moisture, the acid compounds build up and adhere to engine parts, hamper operations and accelerate wear. This sludge can cause permanent engine damage, and negate the oil filter’s job of sifting contaminants, which reduces fuel economy, increases emissions and can potentially lead to engine failure.
Therefore, more frequent changes and part replacements can be necessary.
If you’re like most car lovers, you take pride in keeping the outside of your car clean. Sure, looks are important, but what about what’s inside, under the hood? Should you be just as finicky about keeping your engine clean? You better believe it! Here’s why…
Over time, thick, gummy deposits form and settle throughout your engine. Unfortunately, deposits clog oil passages and restricts oil flow to vital engine parts” especially the upper valve train areas. A lack of lubrication in this area will increase engine wear and fuel consumption. Even worse, it decreases engine power. That’s why the motor oil you choose is so critical. Your engine needs protection against this kind of harmful build–up.
Even if you follow a routine service schedule, driving conditions are anything but routine. Your engine performance is constantly challenged by factors that contribute to deposit formation, including:
What Causes Engine Build-Up?
- stop and go driving
- prolonged periods of idling
- short trips that don’t allow your engine time to warm up
- towing trailers or other heavy loads
- airborne dirt
- fuel dilution
- longer drain intervals
Industry experts say some modern engines are more prone to deposits than older engines. Here are some additional reasons:
1. Engine breathing
Water vapor and combustion gases that develop inside an engine must be purged, usually by burning in the cylinders. If the combustion gases and water vapor are not disposed of, deposits can form.*
2. Hot and cold spots
To warm engines quickly and reduce emissions, engineers in recent years have moved the catalytic converter closer to the cylinder head. In some cars, the converter has been integrated into the exhaust manifold. Both scenarios bring a major heat source closer to the engine, causing hot and cold spots. Hot spots bake oil causing deposits. Cold spots cause acid and deposits.*
3. Tighter tolerances
Engines now burn less oil because more accurate machining has created an extremely tight fit between the engine’s moving parts, such as piston rings, bearings and valves. The result: low oil lights don’t flash, and customers neglect oil changes.*
Do your engine a favor and keep it just as clean as you would your car’s exterior. You’ll see a big “thank you” in the form of increased performance and longer engine life.
* Automotive News April 18th, 2005.