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3 Vital Car Fluids You Need to Change, And When

Keep your car running like new by changing its vital fluids regularly!

Your car needs a few different fluids to work properly. Knowing what those are and when they should be changed is important if you want your ride to remain in tip-top shape.

We’ll cover the three most vital: engine oil, transmission fluid and antifreeze.

Antifreeze keeps your car’s engine from overheating.

Most of us know that antifreeze keeps an engine from overheating, but you may be surprised at how much more it does.

Antifreeze is a solution of water and ethylene glycol, which lowers the freezing point of water. The lower the temperature at which something freezes, the less likely ice crystals are to form.

So what does that have to do with your car? Well, it’s not just the engine that can overheat. It’s also the radiator and the heater core — when these parts heat up, they produce steam and if there’s no liquid left in the system to absorb that steam, it can cause some serious problems. So antifreeze not only protects your engine from overheating, but it also prevents damage to your radiator and heater core by keeping them from boiling dry.

Antifreeze also has a couple of other jobs: It ensures that your car’s cooling system is full (you don’t want air pockets forming in there) and it helps prevent corrosion in those parts. Antifreeze contains inhibitors that stop rust and corrosion from forming in your cooling system, extending its life.*

Transmission fluid helps keep your car’s gears shifting smoothly.

Transmission fluid helps keep your car’s gears shifting smoothly. It is the oil that lubricates and cools the transmission and differential. Most vehicles have a transmission fluid dipstick, which allows you to check the fluid level in the automatic transmission. Manual transmission fluid doesn’t have a dipstick, but you can check the level by removing the filler plug.

Transmission fluid should be changed every 30,000 miles or every two years, whichever comes first. Some manufacturers recommend changing it more frequently, and this is especially true if you regularly drive in stop-and-go traffic or drive long distances on dirt roads.

If you’re considering having your transmission serviced or repaired, bring your owner’s manual with you so you can tell the technician what type of transmission you have and how often to service it. If your vehicle has 150,000 miles on it, you’ll likely need to change the filter as well as the fluid.

Engine oil keeps all the moving parts of your engine lubricated.

Engine oil serves as a lubricant for your car’s engine, keeping all its moving parts from wearing down. It also acts to clean your engine by collecting and removing abrasive materials like carbon and other contaminants.

And while most cars come with oil included in the price of the vehicle, it’s still important to maintain your supply to keep your engine running smoothly. Just as you might replace the oil filter in your car on a regular basis, you should be changing the oil in your car every 3,000-5,000 miles or so. That’s because engine oil is not only used to lubricate but also to capture impurities that can otherwise damage your car’s performance and even incur costly repairs.

You should change each of these fluids every 12,000 miles or according to your car’s manufacturer’s recommendations. If you don’t have time to do it yourself, many auto shops offer this service at a reasonable price. Keep your car running like new by changing its vital fluids regularly!

If you liked this post, be sure to check out our blog for more helpful tips and tricks! And as always, feel free to give us a call if you need any assistance with your vehicle. We’re happy to help!