Since driving requirements and lifestyles differ among Tacoma drivers, some vehicle manufacturers issue two auto maintenance schedules: the regular schedule and the severe service schedule. Which schedule should Tacoma auto owners follow?

Things to Consider When Assessing Your Maintenance Schedules

How long is your commute? And what are the weather conditions like?

Let’s suppose your owner’s manual says the severe service oil change recommendation is 3,000 miles and the standard recommendation is 5,000 miles. If you are driving longer distances more frequently, you should have your oil changed more frequently as well. Factors such as weather and road conditions are also a part of how frequently your should change your oil. Analyze your driving patterns and Tacoma area weather and road conditions to determine which end of the spectrum you’re closer to.

How long is your commute during severe temperature highs or lows?

The temperature outside may seem unrelated your maintenance schedule, but it far from it. Normal condensation causes moisture accumulation in the engine oil. Short trips around Tacoma during cold snaps means that the engine doesn’t heat up enough for the moisture to evaporate. The water in the oil turns to dangerous oil sludge that clogs up your engine and doesn’t let the oil protect it adequately. That’s why Washington drivers need to change their oil more often – to clean the sludge out before it causes problems. For more information on the effects of cold weather on your car read more here.

Are you carrying heavy loads?

Carrying heavy loads (with or without a trailer) in nice Washington summer weather causes your engine and transmission to run at higher temperatures and with more stress. The fluids will break down more quickly. Additives that clean and prevent dangerous corrosion will be depleted sooner. Air pollution and dust cause fluids to get dirty faster. Same for filters. All of these things can lead to premature wear and eventual repairs and push up maintenance schedules. If you want some expert advice, talk with your friendly Courtesy Auto Service and Tire Repair advisor. We can help you restore your car to good working order and help you know the best schedule to follow.

For information about maintenance schedules and services visit us at our Maintenance Services page.