How often do I need to change the oil in my vehicle?
There are many variables that determine how often an oil change is needed (climate, drive time, highway or city street driving, etc.). You should refer to the Scheduled Maintenance section in your vehicle owner’s manual. If your vehicle is newer than 2006, there is a good chance that it is equipped with a system called “Maintenance Minder.” This system calculates service intervals by how often and under what conditions the vehicle is being driven. When the orange wrench on the dash lights up, it is letting you know that the oil life is down to 15% and you are getting close to the time to have servicing performed. On older vehicles, the interval recommended is every 5000 miles or six months.
Should I consider using synthetic motor oil in my vehicle?
Synthetic motor oils can be a good choice for high output, turbocharged, or supercharged engines, or for vehicles that are used for towing (especially during hot weather), and vehicles that operate in extremely cold or hot climates. Although more expensive than mineral-based oils, synthetic motor oils can improve fuel economy and provide longer intervals between changes.
How often should I rotate my tires?
On vehicles that are not on the Maintenance Minder system, your tires should be checked for needed rotation at every oil change. Neglecting to rotate tires is a major cause of premature tire wear. On vehicles that are newer than 2006, the Maintenance Minder system will display a #1 on the oil life remaining screen when the orange wrench is illuminated. This #1 refers to the recommended tire rotation.
Is it really necessary to replace my timing belt at the recommended interval?
YES – if your vehicle is equipped with a timing belt and not a timing chain. The failure of a timing belt in Hondas can result in major engine damage. The cost of repairing a damaged engine caused by a broken timing is much greater than the cost of a timing belt replacement.
I have a belt making a very loud squeal on my car. Should have it changed?
Inspect & replace belts regularly. The belt system in your car helps parts like your alternator and air conditioning compressor to operate correctly. When a belt breaks, it can cause costly damage. To avoid this, inspect your belts regularly for wear. If they are showing signs, go ahead and replace them before they become a problem.
What does it mean if my “check engine” or “service engine soon” light comes on?
There are many sensors and computerized components that manage your vehicle’s engine performance and emissions. When one of these sends a signal to the on-board computer, the “check engine” light is illuminated. Although your car may seem to run fine, it is important to have the issue addressed as soon as possible to prevent long-term problems.
What should I do if my car starts to overheat?
This can be a very serious problem – if your car overheats for too long, you can damage your engine. As soon as possible, find a safe place to pull off the road and shut the engine off! Do not attempt to check the fluid level in the radiator; the hot fluid can cause severe burns. The best thing to do is let the engine cool down for 20-30 minutes, drive a very short distance to a safe location, and have your car towed to our service department or to the nearest Honda facility.
How do I make sure my car battery has a good electrical connection?
Battery cables and terminals should be cleaned and inspected periodically to make sure they provide a good electrical connection. Look for any corrosion (this may look similar to cottage cheese) around the battery terminals.
When should I replace my car’s fuel filter?
Most Hondas built in the last decade have internal fuel filters located in the fuel pick-up inside the fuel tank. These have no regular maintenance intervals and should last the life of the vehicle. On older Hondas, to help ensure dependable, trouble-free performance, replace your car’s fuel filter approximately every 30,000 miles as recommended in your vehicle’s owner’s manual.
When should I change my spark plugs?
For Hondas built after 2000, the recommended interval is 105,000 miles (along with a valve clearance inspection and adjustment). On earlier Hondas, for maximum fuel economy and peak engine performance, your spark plugs should be replaced every 30 months or 30,000 miles.
Why do I sometimes hear my brakes squeal?
As with most vehicles, weather conditions can play a large part in the noise produced by Honda brakes. Cool or cold weather and moist or rainy conditions cause many brake pads to chatter against the rotors when lightly braking. This fine chatter is often heard as a squeal. There are times that the brake sensor could be sounding, indicating that the brake pads are worn out and replacement is needed. Failure to get the brake pads replaced could cause damage to the brake rotors, requiring those to be replaced also.
How can I tell why the remote for my “Keyless Entry” isn’t working?
The Keyless Entry system on newer Hondas uses a remote transmitter to signal the locks to be actuated. Batteries are used inside the transmitter, so these can run down and be the cause of an inoperative remote. Some remote keys also have a small red light that will illuminate when a lock or unlock button is pressed. If this light does not light up, there may be a problem with the remote.
Why does Honda recommend replacing my brake fluid every three years?
Brake fluid, by design, is a hydroscopic fluid. This means that is attracts moisture. Moisture in the brake system can cause swelling and deterioration of the rubber brake lines and seals used in the system.
Should I trust the “Maintenance Minder” system to tell me when to change the oil?
Many people have always changed a vehicle’s oil at 3-5000 mile intervals. The Maintenance Minder system (The little orange wrench on the dash that lights up at 15% oil life remaining) will come on at a range of 5-8000 miles. This seams like a high mileage to a lot of people, however, the system is designed to adjust the recommended mileage by how the vehicle is driven. Every Honda driver drives differently and in many different weather conditions. The “Maintenance Minder” takes into consideration the engine temperature, ambient air temperature, throttle positioning, engine load, and many other conditions to calculate how the vehicle is being driven. This system was under development by Honda and many other manufacturers for many years before using it in production. It has been a proven system designed to properly keep your Honda running at peak performance and economy and at a much reduced cost of ownership. So, to answer the question – yes! The Maintenance Minder is a reliable and trustworthy indicator of whether your oil is due for a change.