Pros With Car Repair Training Weigh in: 3 Ways Car Maintenance Has Changed Over Time

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Car maintenance is a big expense in many households, so it may come as a surprise that cars nowadays actually need less maintenance than was necessary in the past. The main difference? Cars of old had many different parts that wore out semi-regularly, whereas modern cars have fewer parts as well as some new technology to preserve formerly finicky components.
With older models still driving around and needing a good deal of maintenance, students completing their car repair training might like to take a look at how maintenance for older models compares to that which is required for newer ones.
Here are a few of the bigger differences.

1. Newer Cars Need To Get Their Oil Changed Less Frequently

Older cars need their oil changed about every 4,800 to 8,000 km, or else they risk having the engine overheat from friction, which in turn would lead to greater likelihood of breakdown.
According to many professionals, this is not the case for newer models. The increased reliance on superior synthetic motor oils, plus smaller gaps between moving parts, have all led to greater distances that can be travelled before a car needs an oil change.
Modern cars can usually go 12,000 to 16,000 km without needing an oil change, and some cars can even go as high as 24,000 km without issue. When you end up working with older cars during your career, though, you should still recommend oil changes on a more regular basis.

2. New Engines Need Fewer Tune-ups By Grads of Automotive Repair Training

Engine tune-ups are important, even for modern cars. But the steps that tune-ups used to require included far more extensive work by professionals with car repair training than is needed for newer cars. That’s because electronic ignition and onboard computers have negated or automated much of the old tune-up process.
Most customers today can expect modern tune-ups to involve getting a car’s spark plugs changed, an inspection and occasional replacement of the fuel and air filters, and sometimes a replacement of fuel-injectors. This would only take place about once every 25,000-40,000 km. Compare that to the tune-ups you might have to do if you encounter an older car while on the job, which requires cleaning and replacing ignition points, spark plugs, condensers, distributor rotors, and distributor caps, and adjusting ignition timing and the carburetor—all about once every 12,000 km.

3. Clients Without Car Repair Training Can Monitor Maintenance Needs With Technology

As you might soon discover after your automotive repair training, new technology makes it easier for clients to keep track of the state of their car and when they might need a professional to take a look at it.

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Apps make it easier to track when a car needs maintenance

Apps like Autocare, aCar, and Car Care let users track fuel consumption and service history, and can also be set to alert users when service is necessary. This helps to both manage data and help drivers self-diagnose problems with their vehicle. For example, if an app is alerting a driver that their car’s fuel economy has reduced greatly, it’s likely time for them to head to the shop.
While this doesn’t directly change the way maintenance works, it has allowed car owners to more easily take part in the process, and will likely help some users keep themselves on track for necessary appointments. You might even recommend that your clients try one of these apps throughout your career.
Are you thinking about attending auto repair school?
Visit CATI for more information or to speak with an advisor!

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