Back-to-School Vehicle Maintenance Tips

September 25, 2019 11:10 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

The new school year is here, so it’s important to make sure your vehicle is up for another year of carpools, commutes and transporting kids to and from their afterschool activities. Here’s a quick overview of some of the steps you should take with your end-of-summer car maintenance in Chino, CA to make sure you’re good to go for another school year.

Check the tires

The tires tend to be forgotten by most people, but you should regularly check the tread wear level to make sure that it’s safe to continue driving your vehicle on those tires. There should be at least 1/16 of an inch of tread for you to be able to legally drive on your tires, but the more practical guideline should be 1/8 of an inch. Any less than that and you should seriously consider replacing your tires, especially before the winter weather hits.

Tires that lack the proper tread can lose traction when the roads get wet, have a higher chance of a blowout and give you less stopping power, increasing your stopping distances. Simply put, they’re a safety hazard.

You should also make sure your tires are inflated to the proper level. Your vehicle manual or a label inside your door jamb will tell you the pressure level at which your tires should be inflated.

Oil changes

Keep on top of your oil changes so you can keep your engine in good condition for many years to come! Most vehicles these days can go 5,000 to 7,000 miles before needing an oil change, but depending on the kind of vehicle you have and the type of oil you use, your required changes could be more or less frequent than that. Your owner’s manual will again provide you with the information you need about oil changes, including the type of oil and the recommended frequency.


Top off all of your fluids that need to be replenished on a regular basis, including your windshield wiper fluid, your engine oil, your power steering fluid, your brake fluid and your transmission fluid. Remove old fluids that are clearly past their useful life.


Your brakes will wear down at some point, so it’s important to check them regularly, ideally every time you rotate your tires. You can see how much surface your brake pads have left, and if they appear to have worn down significantly, you can replace them. In addition, if you start to hear loud squeaking or humming noises while applying the brakes, this is likely a sign that your brake pads are wearing out and you should have them inspected and replaced if necessary.


Finally, make sure you check your battery and make sure it has enough usable life left to at least get you through the winter. The last thing you want is for your battery to die on a chilly day, or on a day where you’re in a hurry to get your kids to school.

For more information, contact Gabriel’s Automotive & Towing about summer car maintenance in Chino, CA.

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