Regular Truck Maintenance and Care
When it comes to keeping a truck in working condition, there are quite a number of things one can do. First off, routine maintenance is a given, something everyone who owns a vehicle should do. Maintenance can not only keep a vehicle running well but will keep it running longer too. However, if you love your car, SUV, or truck, then you can always go a little further to keep it looking fine for years to come.
When talking about maintenance, people often think of a mechanic, and that would be correct. Although there are some things a non-mechanic can do, it’s always good to visit the local mechanic for some good ol’ car care. Be sure to do the routine stuff.
These days, for newer model vehicles, it’s a good rule of thumb for getting an oil change every 7,500 miles, and the same goes for trucks. Replacing the motor oil with clean oil is good practice, and so is swapping out the air filter. An engine needs clean air to work at its best, and with all the impurities in the air, especially when going off road, that air filter is gonna tackle a lot, just like the air filter in a home A/C unit. Switch out the engine’s air filter every 20,000 miles for cleaner air to burn. Keep an eye on the transmission fluid too, replacing it every 30,000 miles – more often if your transmission tends to overheat. If that is a problem, get an oil cooler if the truck doesn’t already come with one. Of course, it’s always best to follow the owner’s manual for specific time frames for particular maintenance items since all manufacturers and vehicles are not the same.
Aside from replacing old and worn down fluids, always check the main three fluids under the hood – engine oil, coolant, and transmission fluid. If either are running low, they should be refilled to appropriate levels, and if impurities are apparent, then replace them as you would with an oil change. It would also be good to note that regularly lubricating the differentials will keep all those components working smoothly. Lastly, a little tire care never hurts – whenever getting an oil change, get the wheels balanced, rotated, and aligned for longer tire wear and smooth sailing.
Of course, some of us love our trucks and treat it like more than just a hunk of metal to get us from point A to point B. If you want to keep it protected, as well as running long, then more than basic maintenance would be the right move.
Many truck owners enjoy getting their vehicle dirty, it’s like a rite of passage. However, not cleaning a truck once in awhile, especially after some mudding, will eventually cause it to deteriorate. We have some tips for you on exactly how to wash a truck that played in the mud.
Try to keep your truck away from the elements when not driving around. If owning a house with a garage, or living in an apartment complex with a car garage or reserved space with roofing, be sure to keep the truck away inside to protect it from sun, wind, rain, etc. Otherwise, if there is room, look into getting a carport kit. It’s basically a tent for your car and can cost anywhere from $100 – $1,000.
Lastly, aside from keeping the differentials lubricated, giving the differentials and the undercarriage a protective coating can help will come in handy when going off road or driving along roads with loose particles, such as gravel.
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