Basic (DIY & Minor) Maintenance
Oil & Filter Change
Ok, I know you all know the oil and filter should be changed each time together.
Is anyone seriously extending their engine oil changes to the manufacturer's minimum requirement? DON'T DO IT unless you have the capability of having the dirty oil laboratory analyzed and are consistent in driving habits and climate. At this writing, I am aware of only one manufacturer that actually tests the oil while in the car and signals required changes based on oil quality.
There are a couple of problems I have seen when an owner tries to follow the extended service intervals. First, the oil levels are not being checked by owners stretching out their services. Second, most owners are not strictly adhering to the service interval; 7500 miles becomes 8-10,000 miles. If fluid levels are allowed to drop while extending the change interval, contamination in the oil becomes sufficient to harden oil seals in less than three years, causing leaks and (worse) engine failure (I've seen engine failures in quality automobiles barely out of warranty as a result of this behavior.) If you change your oil at the manufacturer's 'Severe Service' intervals, and keep the oil level up in between, that original engine might actually last longer than you'd care to drive it.
Part of a quality oil and filter change. You can do this yourself very effectively. Get a checklist of manufacturer recommended inspection and lubrication points. Otherwise, have a qualified technician familiar with your make and model inspect the car.
Basic (DIY & Cheap) Maintenance
Beginning with the most Basic of Maintenance, the most neglected maintenances of all. Click Here
Basic (DIY or Minor) Maintenance
Services you can easily perform at home, but may prefer to have a shop perform.
These are the more extensive service intervals if you are following your vehicle manufacturer's recommended maintenance schedule.