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Preferred Automotive
12356 Wilkins Ave
Rockville, MD 20852
Call Us Today!
301-881-8530

Hours:
Mon-Fri: 7AM - 5PM
Sat-Sun: Closed

3 EVERYDAY THINGS YOU COULD BE DOING THAT DAMAGE YOUR CAR’S PAINT!

 There are two camps of drivers when it comes to caring for their vehicles:

  1. The Compulsive Car-Washer, Car Detail Guy. You know this guy or girl. The one who won’t let you eat McDonald’s in the car and vacuums it regularly. He or she probably gets the oil changed every 3,000 miles on-the-dot (even though that’s completely unnecessary for most vehicles on the road today) and refuses to drive on dirt roads—no matter whose wedding or funeral calls for it.
  2. The Garbage Dump Driver. Everything goes on the floor and everyone is welcome to eat all the McDonald’s fries and ketchup they desire. The oil gets changed… when he or she remembers to to have it done and the trunk is always full of odds and ends; a small extension of his or her home closet.

The difference between these two camps of people is that one fell in love with the car or truck upon ownership and the other, well, fell out of love at some point. At Preferred Automotive, our experts see these two ALL THE TIME. But, both groups are often making the same mistakes when it comes to caring for their car or truck’s paint. Keep reading…

  1. Don’t leave splattered bugs or bird poo on your car’s paint
    Yes, I know—you don’t want to clean it off. Removing dead bugs and a streak of white bird droppings off the surface of your vehicle isn’t your idea of an uplifting activity. Here’s what you need to know:
  • Summertime bug splats are terrible for your car’s paint. Their little bodies carry acidity that degrades the top layers. In fact, if they aren’t removed immediately, you could end up with bug splatter outlines imprinted—permanently—into the top layers of your car’s paint. Gross.
  • There’s no nice way to say this, so I’m just going to say it: bird poo is as bad for your vehicle’s paint as it is disgusting. Traces of grainy, acidic seeds and berries are actually in the streak left so lovingly on your doors and hood. This can and will stain, scratch, and dull the paint. We recommend you use a soft, damp microfiber cloth to gently wipe it away. Immediately. Seriously—don’t let the poop bake itself to your poor, defenseless car!
  1. Sunlight
    If at all possible, park your vehicle in a garage, shaded area, or cover it with a car cover. The UV rays from the sun are just as damaging to your car or truck’s paint as they are to our unprotected skin.
  2. Soda and Coffee
    Now, I know none of you purposely spill these things on your car’s exterior, but you may want to think twice before setting your drink on the roof if you’re prone to forgetfulness. As you drive away and realize—too late—that your precious caffeine has just bathed your vehicle, you need to route yourself immediately to a carwash to remove it. The acid will tear away at your paint if allowed to dry.

We hope these tips help! For more like these, and auto maintenance Rockville, MD give our pros at Preferred Automotive a shout! We’d love to help!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

THAT TIME I IGNORED MY CAR’S BRAKES…

Have you ever procrastinated on something and been sorely, sorely sorry you ever did? Well… I have. And it almost turned out disastrous. Three years ago, I distinctly remember hearing my brakes squeal when I came to a stop at an intersection. Dang, I thought. I need to get my brakes checked, soon. That was a good thought. The problem was, I never did. Over time, my brakes became louder and louder. Eventually, then started to grind and with each increased symptom/indicator I told myself I would schedule an appointment for “next weekend.”

Six months later, I was in a near-accident. I was driving the speed limit on a throughway, and someone ran a red light. I braked, but my car hardly responded. I pressed harder and harder… and I was only sort of slowing down. I heard an intense grinding and I remembered my procrastination. Luckily, there was space for me to swerve and slowly come to a stop in another lane. I was thoroughly shaken up. The car that ran the stoplight kept going and I sat in my disbelief, fear, and relief for five minutes before I called a tow truck.

Yes, I got my brakes checked—that evening. Procrastination had left me with hundreds of dollars to be spent on new drums, new brakes, and a few other related repairs. I was thankful the crew at Preferred Automotive here in Rockville, MD, didn’t lecture me too much. But, rightfully, they explained how far gone I’d let it go and how unsafe my car had become.

I had ignored the symptoms and justified waiting longer and longer in my mind. One of the experts at Preferred told me they, unfortunately, see this kind of thing a lot. People take their vehicles for granted—like I had—and forget how important it is to maintain our brakes, our tires, our oil changes, etc. When you think about it, a simple thing like procrastinating could have really harmed someone in the scenario I experienced. That truth has stuck with me.

These days, I make an appointment for the weekend following the very day I hear that initial squeal. I can’t afford not to, and the drivers here in Rockville deserve that from me. Driving is a privilege, you know?

I’ll leave you with this: get your brakes checked! The following are all indicators that it’s time:

  • Squealing when braking
  • Shaking when coming to a stop
  • A sticky brake pedal
  • Grinding sensation or sound as you brake or let off the brake to pull forward
  • Reduced responsiveness
  • Pulling to one side or another while stopping
  • Vibrations
  • A “check engine” or “check brake” light
  • A mushy pedal (one that goes straight to the floor when you press it)
  • An overly-sensitive pedal (one that seems to grab too soon)

If you live here or near Rockville, MD brake repairPreferred Automotive is a great place full of experienced, ethical technicians. Set your appointment sooner rather than later, please!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

Choosey Drivers Choose Preferred Automotive

Wouldn’t you agree that preventing a problem before it’s a BIG problem is the best was to “Adult?” Seriously, why wait for some small issue to snowball into a real issue that costs you even more in the future? Here at Preferred Automotive in Rockville, MD, we believe in saving our customers time and money—and to do that, you need three things:

  • – A trustworthy, dependable auto repair shop
  • – Preventative automobile maintenance
  • – General knowledge about your own personal vehicle

That said, let’s get you pointed in the right direction!

First thing’s first: find where an auto repair shop to call YOURS
This may not feel like the easiest of tasks, we know. There’s a lot to think about when choosing where to entrust your car. But, choosing is actually not that difficult; it boils down to a few specifics (we like lists, can you tell?):

  • Trusting your gut: don’t ever settle on a repair shop that makes you feel uncomfortable or taken for granted. If something feels like a Red Flag, it probably is. Look around when you are at a shop—is it clean? Are the staff friendly and helpful? Do they answer your questions? Is service timely?
  • Checking reviews: of course, you’ll want to filter out the reviews that seem ridiculous. But, pay attention to what people have to say (overall) online about different repair shops. And, for those who do have something negative to say—keep reading and assess the level of professionalism the company expresses in its response to the displeased customer.
  • Scoping out the website: how does the company present itself? How long has it been around? These are both telling details. A well-organized site says the owner takes pride in presenting his/her company well and understands the importance of being informative. How long the repair shop has been around reveals its rapport with the community and the likelihood that the culture is honest and quality enough to remain in business.
  • Services provided: a full-service repair shop is a place you can call “home” for your vehicle. For example, here at Preferred Automotive, there are services for virtually any needs:
    • o Regular maintenance (oil changes, tire rotations, brake services, alignments, courtesy checks, etc.)
    • o Diagnostics (we have a top-of-the-line electronic diagnosis center)
    • o Smog checks
    • o Major issue repair (timing belt replacement, transmission and engine replacement, etc.)
    • o State required safety inspections
    • o Much more…

Staying ahead of the game:
Preventative maintenance is our anthem. It’s too important to make sure you nip an issue in the bud so you avoid costly repairs. We’ll keep record of your vehicle’s history to help you keep in front of problems at the first sign of trouble.

Knowledge is power
With the right Rockville, MD repair shop, you won’t have to be on-guard against unnecessary “recommendations.” But, we always advise our customers to learn a little about their vehicle so they can better describe to our technicians what they hear/see/smell/feel to avoid future issues. It’s as simple as pulling out that manual and doing a bit of reading (and chatting with our professionals to learn a bit each time you visit!).

We hope you’ll choose Preferred Automotive as your vehicle’s “home” repair shop. See you soon!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

The Top 3 Most Common Causes Of Failing Your State Vehicle Inspection

A state inspection can be a tad nerve-wracking when you aren’t confident you will pass. To ease that anxiety, our team here at Preferred Automotive wants to give you a few pointers to get your mind and vehicle ready before you potentially fail! Keep reading to discover the three most commons reasons people here in Rockville, MD, fail their state inspection!

#1: Missing gas cap
You read that right. You would not believe how many people bring their vehicles to us with missing gas caps and are SHOCKED to learn this small little piece can and will pass or fail you during a state inspection. Seems tiny—which, it literally is—but it’s a BIG problem! If your gas cap is missing, the gas inside your tank is actually able to escape and register as a “leak” in your vehicle’s system. This will likely trigger your check-engine light to come on and fail you for emissions release with a false EVAP (Evaporative Emissions System) failure code. This won’t harm your vehicle to be without a gas cap, but it will flag your car or truck as “harmful to the environment.”

#2: Clogged air filter
I know, it’s almost shocking how simple this one is! So, when your parents told you (and when a mechanic has advised you) to have your air filter changed out—there was very good reason. A dirty air filter means the engine will be unable to suck enough clean air into the combustion chambers. We call this “running rich” in the industry, which means your vehicle is getting too much gas and not enough airflow. Over time, your car will lose power and begin to run roughly (and your check-engine light will pop on to warn you). The warning signs of an engine running rich include: unusual sounds, a misfiring engine, that good ol’ check-engine light, reduced fuel economy, a dirty-looking air filter (obviously…), reduced horsepower, a strong gasoline smell when starting the engine, and block/sooty smoke or flames (big problem!) coming from the exhaust.

#3: A malfunctioning check-engine light
That dang check-engine light! But, it is there for a reason. To pass your state inspection it must work properly. If not, there’s no way for your car to warn you at the first sign of trouble that you need to stop in for a visit. Think about it—you can not safely drive the roads without this helpful little light communicating with you as needed. We have met with countless drivers who either didn’t know their check-engine light was malfunctioning (and was, thus, useless) or knew it but underestimated its importance for their safety and successful state inspection.

There you have it! Now that you know the top three most common ways to fail a state inspection, you can avoid them! If you have repairs you need to be addressed or are in need of a Rockville, MD state inspection and live here in Rockville, MD—come visit Preferred Automotive!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

Picking The Right Motor Oil

There are various options when the time comes to have your vehicle’s oil changed—but do you really know the difference between them? Don’t worry, most people do not. Keep reading to learn with this short guide from the crew here at Preferred Automotive in Rockville, MD.

Take note: not all oils are created equal. I know, I know—it can be frustrating when mechanics ask you if you want to get a more expensive motor oil for your regular oil change. Do not dismiss the suggestions, though. Different vehicles need different oils to run optimally.

Let’s learn about viscosity…
Sounds like a word reminiscent of a 7th-grade science quiz, doesn’t it? That’s because it is… Viscosity is the measurable thickness or thinness of [in this case] oil. Technically, it is “a liquid’s resistance to flow.” All motor oils thin as they heat and thicken as they cool back down. So, and oil is rated for one viscosity when it’s cold and another when it’s hot. A more thin-resistant oil is better for some vehicles and even for warmers seasons, while a thickening-resistant viscosity works best with other vehicles and colder seasons. There is a rating system on motor oil bottles we would be happy to explain to you at your next visit!

The oil types
Ok, before you nod your head and agree to an oil change with a motor oil you do not yet understand, check these out!

  • Premium conventional oil: This one is the standard for you new-car owners. Car manufacturers usually specify 5W-20, 5W-30, or 10W-30 (optional). Between these three ratings, nearly every light-duty vehicle is covered.
  • Full synthetic oil: Now, we are getting a little fancy. This oil is specified for high-tech engines, like your Corvette’s and your Mercedes-Benz’s and your Tesla’s. In order to be a full synthetic oil, it has to have passed stringent testing and be superior and longer-lasting in areas such as viscosity and other factors.
  • Synthetic blend oil: This one has been formulated to support somewhat heavier vehicles and higher temps. So, if you are an SUV or pickup truck driver—this is a good oil for you.
  • Higher mileage oil: Half of us fall into this category. If you are on the road with more than 75,000 miles on your car or truck, this is a good oil to choose. In fact, because so many people prefer to pay off their vehicles and drive them well into the 100,000+ range, higher-mileage oil was created as a response to the demand.

Do you feel like an expert yet? No need to—but now you know what we are talking about when we suggest a certain motor oil at your next scheduled Rockville, MD oil change! Remember: not all oils are created equal and your vehicle may need something different than your coworker’s vehicle. The team here at Preferred Automotive can’t wait to see you again, soon!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

4 Expensive Auto Repair Mistakes You Can Avoid!

Did you know there are studies which show that 50-60% of car and truck owners report spending between $480 to $2100 every year on auto repairs and regular maintenance? That’s outrageous! Sure, there some unfortunate circumstances that can cause this—but more than half the population should not be reporting these types of figures as the “norm.”

At Preferred Automotive right here in Rockville, MD,auto repair our team is always looking for ways to help our fellow vehicle owners save their hard-earned money and keep their vehicles running smoothly. So, our professionals have put together a short list of easy tips so you can avoid costly auto repair mistakes.

Mistake #1: Neglecting your tires = uneven front to rear tread
Periodic tire rotations are very important. Without, tires can become unevenly worn and cause all sorts of issues. Most importantly, you want your tires to last as long as possible (because replacements are not cheap!). Further, regularly rotated tires help your vehicle to maintain traction—which is especially important during our winter months when the roads are slick with ice and snow.

Mistake #2: Waiting too long for an oil change
Over time, dirt and debris in your motor oil can cause corrosion and shorten the life of your vehicle’s engine. Routine oil changes and filter replacements keep this dirt and debris to a minimum so your car or truck can last longer and run more efficiently. When you neglect to have the oil changed, the engine becomes too hot. This can cause various components to wear out or to warp and will eventually cause your engine to die and need replacement. That is an expensive problem to have!

Mistake #3: Communicating your repair issue incorrectly
Don’t worry, a good technician is well trained on how to decipher regular, non-mechanic speak for vehicle troubles. But, when describing a problem with your vehicle, take good care in making mental notes about the details:

  • When does it happen?
  • What does it sound like (if applicable, compare the sound to a similar sound you know)?
  • Does it have a smell (gasoline smell, perhaps)?
  • Mitigating factors, such as temperature-related (if you notice a certain issue when it’s hot/cold), upon start-up, after driving a long distance, while braking, etc.

Again, you don’t have to be an expert or know the location of the issue—but the more description you can provide, the better!

Mistake #4: Driving on “E”
DON’T DO THIS. When your fuel gauge comes on, you have less gas in your tank than you think you do. Running on fumes is not only a bad idea—it’s a risky one. Nevermind the fact that you could end up stranded and embarrassed on the side of a road somewhere or that you could be ticketed for stalling based on where you run out. You are risking serious damage to your vehicle! The fuel pump can actually suck-in dirt and debris from the bottom of the tank, clog it, and force a costly tank replacement.

Follow this advice from Preferred Automotive and you’ll be glad you did! Drive safe!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

What To Expect When You’re Expecting A State Inspection

Thought you were done with pass/fail tests after high school graduation? Think again! State inspections here in Maryland are no joke. They require an ASE-certified auto technician to “pass” or “fail” your vehicle based on mandated requirements. These requirements are important not only for the health and longevity of your vehicle, but also for the safety of the environment and of the other drivers and motorists around you.

If you are new to Maryland, there may be requirements here that you are unfamiliar with. In fact, some states don’t require regular state inspections at all. Lucky us; our state does!

Naturally, you want to know what you’re in for when you visit us for your state inspection here at Preferred Automotive, right? Well, let us tell you! When you bring your car or truck here to us, here’s what we’re looking at:

– Vehicle exhaust: we’re looking for popping, screeching, excessive noise, rattling. All of these could mean tailpipe, converter, muffler, or other exhaust issues.
– Tire pressure check: this should be checked any time your car or truck is being serviced.
– Suspension: damaged shocks or struts can lead to all sorts of issues in the near future.
– Tire tread wear: uneven wear can be an indication of alignment issues.
– Wheel alignment: we’re looking for vehicle stability and handling for safety while operating.
– Lights and signals: this is a big safety check; all need to be working properly—high beams, tail lights, signals, hazards, etc.
– Windshield wipers: pretty self-explanatory; either they’re working or they aren’t.
– Belts and tensioners: drive belt and fan or serpentine belt and the tensioner which connects them.
– Air filter: we’ll make sure this is clean of debris and that the air is properly circulating.
– Battery checks: we will assess the liveliness of your battery—meaning we look for connection issues, loose cables, and any corrosion.
– Window tint: the state of Maryland is pretty specific regarding window tints; at least 35% of light needs to pass through and only the top 5” can have tint. Further, red, yellow, and amber tints are prohibited. On SUVs, trucks, and limos, the back windows can have as much tint as you wish.

What to do if you receive a “fail”
First, don’t panic! These things happen sometimes. All this means is that we need to get your car fixed up! In most cases, you will have 30 days/1,000 miles from the initial inspection time to have the items which caused the failure to be addressed and corrected without a new inspection fee. Once you’ve passed, we will issue you an inspection certificate you can bring with you for registration!

For further information regarding Maryland state inspections, check out the following link: http://www.mva.maryland.gov/About-MVA/INFO/58000ASE/58000-01T.htm

The Rockville, MD vehicle inspection is no joke—because it deals with safety. And, we take safety very seriously! But, it is an easy test to pass! Come visit us here at Preferred Automotive in Rockville and let’s get you Maryland state-ready!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

Your Move To Maryland And Your Vehicle: Don’t Be One Of The “Shocked!”

So, you are planning to move to Maryland, are you? Welcome! We hope you stay for many years. Moving is a pain, though, isn’t it? There’s so much to do and so many little surprises that you just can’t plan for sometimes. Issues with your vehicle should not be one of these “surprises.”

The professionals here at Preferred Automotive in Rockville, MD, want to help you remain surprise-free for your pending move, so keep scrolling to learn what to do with your vehicle in preparation of a smooth move!

Be prepared for your Maryland vehicle inspection BEFORE you arrive
This is the state rule: newcomers have to submit their vehicles to an inspection prior to registering it with the state. So, why not be prepared before you get here? Once you’ve arrived, you’ll have 60 days to have your car or truck inspected and registered with the state. Sure, this is enough time for you to get moved and settled, but if you’re anything like the majority—60 days fly by. Here’s a checklist for you, so you don’t find yourself surprised during your inspection at the tail-end of the moving process:

– Tire condition: don’t have your vehicle inspected with bald tires.
– Wheel alignment: does your vehicle ride straight? Check—does the vehicle pull to the right or left? Does it shake when you accelerate? These are common signs your alignment could need fixing.
– Fix any leaks: if you’ve noticed your car leaking on to your current driveway or parking spot, have this addressed before your inspection. (Even without a pending inspection, this shouldn’t go unaddressed!)
– Inspect windshield wipers: they need to work well.
– Check engine lights: if you have a warning on your dash, get this addressed prior to your inspection. An emissions failure is the #1 reason for a vehicle inspection failure.
– Speedometer and odometer: are they legible?
– Electrical system: do your windows, horn, and battery function properly?

The week of your move…
Since most of us fall behind on vehicle tune-ups, the week of your move is the right time to get under your hood for some last-minute preps:
– Top off fluids. Your fluids should be full and clean. Top-off your windshield wiping fluid, antifreeze (you are moving to the Upper Northeast, after all), brake fluid, power steering fluid, and coolant.
– Get the oil changed and the filter replaced.
– Double-check your tire pressure. A too-full tire could rupture on a long trip and a too-low one could go flat easily. You user’s manual will give you the correct number.
– Have a spare. And, be sure the tire pressure is good; you never know when you may need this.
– Battery health. If your battery is old or showing signs of degrading, consider cleaning it up or getting it replaced.
– Call your insurance company. Before a move is the right time to check with your company to see what changes (if any) need to be made.
– Clean the interior. Just as we all like to come home to a clean house after a vacation, you’ll love starting a new chapter with a clean and nice-smelling vehicle.

Again, welcome to Rockville, MD tune-up service! We hope you’ll come visit us here at Preferred Automotive!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

What To Know About Maryland Vehicle Inspections

Before you register your vehicle here in Maryland, it’s important (and mandatory) you have a thorough inspection performed. Here at Preferred Automotive, we would be happy to be your go-to! You see, we believe that getting your new or new-to-you vehicle inspected should be an easy and uncomplicated task; not a tedious and confusing one. So, to help the residents of Rockville, MD, we have created this quick little guide to get you brushed-up on inspections so you know what to expect!

When to have your vehicle inspected
Our little state only requires you to have your car or truck inspected for a couple reasons:
1. You just moved here to Maryland and your car is currently registered in another state.
2. You just bought, received as a gift, or inherited a used vehicle.

Next steps
If you just moved here, welcome! Where are you from? Oh, we hope you love it here as much as we do. In fact, Preferred Automotive has been around since 1990. This is our home and we take great pride in serving the residents (our neighbors) here in Rockville. Maryland has a rich history and unique culture—you’ll see! Anyway, your next step is to schedule an appointment for an inspection. Don’t worry, you have time to get settled. If you just arrived, you have 60 days to pass inspection and register your vehicle. If you are the new owner of a used vehicle, you have 90 days to have it inspected before registering.

Where to go to schedule an inspection
Wherever you choose to go (and we hope you choose to visit us here at Preferred!), just be sure the location is authorized by the state to perform inspections. Considering you probably use your car every single day, choosing the right place is important. So, what makes a location “right” for you, beyond being licensed? Here are a few things to consider:
– A one-stop-shop is convenient. Why not schedule your vehicle inspection at the same place you can have repairs done, if necessary? Wouldn’t it be nice to have your oil changed, your car or truck inspected, and the repairs made as needed all at the same place?
– Somewhere local. There’s no need to drive out of your way to have your inspection completed. That’s just a waste of your time.
– A reputable place. Long-standing businesses got their years of experience by doing quality, trustworthy work. Check out the shops that have been around for decades—there’s a reason they’ve been successful.

The cost is worth it
Knowing you are driving around in a safe vehicle is practically priceless wouldn’t you say? A lot is riding on those tires: you, your family, other loved ones, belongings that aren’t easy to replace… But, this doesn’t mean you need to overpay to have a proper vehicle inspection. In 2016, the average cost was between $90-$150. For a one-time thing, I’d say the cost is worth it.

Do you need a Rockville, MD vehicle inspection? Give our team here at Preferred Automotive a call. We would love to be of service to you!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530

The Magic Number: Oil Changes

You are probably maxed-out on the old “get your oil changed every 3,000 miles” lecture. I know I am. What’s the deal with that rule, anyway? On the one hand, there are parents and mechanics all across the country encouraging young drivers to get into the habit of having their oil changed every three months or 3,000 miles—but consumer reports are calling this a waste of money. Who do we listen to?

According to Preferred Automotive of Rockville, MD, you simply have to consult your owner’s manual. I know, I know; there’s nothing sexy about advising a manual… But, you just have to do it. You see, not all cars and trucks are created equal. They have different manufacturers and technology… their bodies literally require unique attention.

Next, use your head: what type of driving conditions does your vehicle undergo throughout the year? Your owner’s manual can only tell you so much about the car or truck—but it’s up to you to use some discretion according to the region you live in and the type of driving (harsh/not harsh) you do. Here are a few ways we define “harsh” conditions/driving:

– Driving in stop-and-go traffic often.
– Driving in extreme weather: very hot or very cold (here in Rockville, our winters are fierce; thus, the car takes a fair beating).
– Driving at low speeds for long distances. Low speeds are 50 mph or less. So, this applies to you and your vehicle if you rarely take the freeway, work locally, shop and run errands locally, etc.
– Towing something heavy. Do you work on a farm or use your vehicle often for hauling equipment or camper? If so, this is harsh activity for a vehicle—even if it’s designed for this type of thing.
– Driving “hard.” If you’re a hard driver, you know it. Do you race from stoplight to stoplight and brake rather hard? Do people in your life tell you that you’re a harsh driver? Be honest…
– Short trips: less than 5 miles in non-freezing temps or less than 10 miles in freezing temps. If you do these types of trips often, it will wear on your vehicle and cause more frequently needed maintenance.

How many points above apply to you? Just one? Many? There isn’t a hard and fast rule here, but if you can relate to many of these, the 3,000-mile/three-month rule may not be a bad idea for your vehicle. But, if this list seems designed for another vehicle owner—if you simply drive to and from work and an occasional grocery run or band practice pick-up—the 3,000-mile rule is overdoing it.

What’s the actual magic number? Unfortunately, that’s a tough question to answer. Know that some studies have found little difference in a vehicle’s health when oil changes happened every 3,000 miles vs. every 7,000 miles. Perhaps the answer is to split the difference? Perhaps the answer is to chalk up the $20-$45 it costs every three months and not worry about overdoing it. Either way, stop in and see us at Preferred Automotive; top Rockville oil change we’d be happy to take a look at your owner’s manual with you and set up an oil change schedule you can feel good about. See you soon!

Preferred Automotive | 12356 Wilkins Ave | Rockville, MD 20852 | 301-881-8530