The Rest of the Story About Tune-ups

Tune-up Frequency has Changed

Spark Plugs
Tune-up Spark Plugs

Since we now live in a time when we must save money on everything we can, maintenance procedures and services on our vehicles must be examined. In the past when we were told our car needed a tune-up, most savvy car owners knew that meant new spark plugs and probably a new fuel filter. These tune-ups were usually done about every 15,000 to 30,000 miles.

Today the term tune-up is actually used very little. According to many vehicle manufacturers, today’s vehicles can run from 50,000 to 100,000 miles before needing services like those listed above. The manufacturer will most often refer you to the owner’s manual where you’ll find a schedule recommending certain components be inspected to determine if they are in need of service or replacement.

It is very important to note that at dealerships and independent repair shops, service recommendations and maintenance procedures do not necessarily match the owner’s manual for your car.  This discrepancy doesn’t necessarily mean people are recommending services that are not needed.  Rather, opinions vary on what should be done to protect your automotive investment.

At many shops there are specific maintenance recommendations that correspond to the mileage on your vehicle or time since a service was performed.  Because such variance exists between shops, it is important for you to have as much understanding of these recommendations as possible so you can have greater confidence in the decisions you make about services for your car, truck, or SUV.

Here are two examples to illustrate:

  1. Spark Plugs:  These are generally recommended for replacement at around 30,000 miles for vehicles that are older (built prior to 1996).  Newer vehicles may have a 100,000 mile replacement interval.
  2. Fuel Filters:  Repair shops and automotive organizations  recommend replacement should be at around 30,000 miles.  Vehicle manufacturers, on the other hand, may recommend much higher intervals and many not even recommend replacement at all.  Some fuel filters are not serviceable except during replacement of the fuel pump module in the fuel tank.

Palmer’s Automotive Repair Your Expert Tune-Up Shop

Since one of the best ways to save money on a tune-up and maintenance service is to not buy services that aren’t needed.  Finding and consistently taking your car to a reputable repair facility is in your best interest.  Find a shop that you can trust, one that knows both you and your vehicle, and one that will show you documentation to validate what needs to be done and when it should be done.

At Palmer’s NAPA Auto Care Center we will help you understand which services are needed and help you budget those services to fit your financial situation. Automotive maintenance has been proven to save money by reducing the frequency of needing to repairs. Replacing spark plugs when recommended will reduce the electrical load on spark plug wires and distributor caps. A bad spark plug wire will turn on the check engine light and require a diagnosis to determine the cause of the light.

Call today for an appointment or consultation (208) 735-8810 or make an appointment online.

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