How Do You Know If Your Car Needs a Tune Up?

Have you noticed dashboard lights coming on and wonder what the problem might be? There is a way to find out! Today’s vehicles are designed with computer processors, microchips and sensors, which can be linked to a specialized diagnostic computer. This computer scans the operating systems, producing fault codes indicating a problem.

Mechanics are trained to read these codes that are stored in the vehicle’s memory system, which can save you a lot of time and money because you’re not paying for repairs performed on a “trial-and-error” basis. Because the problem can be identified quickly, parts can be ordered and the problem fixed before it gets any bigger.

So what does car diagnostics tell you? It will indicate problems associated with the transmission, oil tank, gas tank, exhaust system, and other components. It also indicates ignition timing issues, level of buildup in the combustion engine, fuel injector performance, whether the ignition coils are firing, engine rpm levels, air, and coolant temperature, crankshaft and camshaft position and throttle opening. In other words, it’s time for a tune up!

Here’s what happens during a tune up:

  • The engine’s fuel-system components will be inspected to make sure the fuel filter is clean and clog-free, and that the fuel pump and fuel injectors are free of deposits and other grime.
  • The spark plugs inspected to gauge their age and wear and make sure they are working properly.
  • The points and condenser will be replaced, if applicable.
  • Check and adjust the ignition timing and idle if needed.
  • Check the engine’s PCV valve.
  • Check the vehicle’s engine air filter and cabin air filter.
  • Check oil and coolant levels.

Of course, a tune up will vary from vehicle to vehicle-based on age, mileage and unique manufacturer recommendations for that vehicle.

Wondering what does car diagnostics tell you? Contact our ASE Certified technicians at Dependable Car Care for more information about a tune up service and to schedule an appointment. Our auto shop proudly serves residents in the community of Ventura, CA, and surrounding area.