Markham Auto Repair

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How Do I Know When is the Right Time for Engine Tune-Up?

Attractive Woman Mechanic

Engine tune-ups are part of your vehicle’s routine maintenance. While they are important, doing them too soon can be a waste of money and ignoring them altogether can leave you with significant issues and repair expenses later on. Whether your vehicle is brand new or a few years old, it is important to understand just what goes into a engine tune-up and most importantly, when it is time for one.

The Tune-Ups of Today – Not Like Grandpa’s Tune-Up Service

Engine tune-ups today are not like they were a few decades ago. Back in the day, vehicles actually needed to re-tune the vehicle systems. Today, however, an engine tune-up involves services like replacing spark plugs, changing the air filter, replacing the PCV valve, and providing a fuel injector and/or throttle body service. A few other items that may be inspected include:

  • Battery voltage
  • Checking spark plug wear and gap specification
  • Scanning the vehicle’s on-board modules for fault codes
  • Checking ignition timing – for older vehicles

Our technicians at Auto Niche will perform a multi-point inspection and engine tune-up service.

How Often Do I Need an Engine Tune-Up?

Mechanic Examining Under Hood

The most confusing part about engine tune-ups is not what tasks are performed, but how often they should be done. Your manufacturer may provide you with a maintenance schedule that specifies how often you need a engine tune-up, which typically is every 50,000kms to 100,000kms or approximately every two and a half to five years. While you have set manufacturer recommendations, there may be a time your vehicle needs an auto service appointment sooner.

Some manufacturers indicate that spark plugs last to almost 200,000kms. While this may be true for the part itself, keep in mind that the plugs have been in the engine for a prolonged period and may not be easily removed. This will add to the labour time. There are even specialty tools designed specifically to extract broken spark plugs. That’s why many repair shops still recommend replacing tune-up components at the 100,000kms mark.

Some indications you may need to bring your vehicle in for car service in Markham include:

  • Your vehicle stalls a lot more than normal. This could mean that your spark plugs are worn.
  • The engine is running rough when idling. This is often a first-line indicator that you may need a tune-up.
  • Your car becomes harder to start. This may indicate a weak battery, fuel system problem or electrical components that are faulty.

What is most important is to note that your vehicle will not necessarily have a “check engine” or “service required” light come on to indicate that it is time for a tune-up. Instead, it’s up to you (in consultation with your technician) to monitor your mileage and listen to your car for signs that it is time for a service appointment.

If it’s time for a tune-up or you need a vehicle inspection in Markham, trust the professionals at AutoNiche with all your maintenance and repair needs. If your check engine light is on, call us today.

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