When Should I Change the Fluids in My Car?

photo of Brendan changing oil fluid, tune-up

Part of good vehicle maintenance is fluid maintenance. Clean fluids are best and ought to be serviced regularly. 

Why? Similar to clean water being great for our bodies, clean fluids are ideal for our vehicles. Plus, good fluid maintenance makes for less-expensive overall car care. 

While it’s true that there are many mechanical elements, and even more technological elements that are in our modern vehicles, there’s still a number of fluids that are needed in order to make our cars, trucks, SUVs, and even hybrids work optimally. 

All but the gas
We inspect all of the fluid levels (except the gas!) in our services. Not only the major factory and manufacturer maintenance appointments, but also the oil services (yes, most vehicles still need oil).

With use of your vehicle, the fluids will either get used up (e.g. windshield washer fluid), or will get dirty (e.g. oil). Regular top off and service is needed for optimal vehicle performance. 

And, bear in mind that the use of a vehicle will impact the need for fluids too. So, if there’s a lot of use of your car, truck, SUV, or hybrid (or a long trip), fluid services may need to happen more frequently. 

This being said, if you have a vehicle that hasn’t been used much at all in the last year or even few years, when you are getting ready to either sell the car or begin using it more regularly, consider having it inspected before you get it on the road. Fluids can also age, get dirty, evaporate, and get stagnant.

What about Refrigerant [Freon]? 
Such a good question!

Refrigerant, technically, is a gas. Replacement of Refrigerant is a little different than just “topping off” or “filling up” as with liquids. Gas actually needs to be measured and inspected for leaks. 

Most often, drivers discover that their air conditioning isn’t blowing as cold as they’d like, or their defroster isn’t working as well. This would be a good time to measure the Refrigerant amount to see if replenishment is needed, or if a leak is the culprit.

If you’re at all in doubt, please reach out and schedule your next service with us. 

Your safety, both in your vehicle and on the road, is our focus here at Tom’s.