Thread: Fool Me Once
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#3: 10-06-2012, 06:12 AM
Title: Senior Monkey
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Car: 2012 2.5GT-L
Posts: 1,994
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In terms of regular maintenance, oil is pretty straightforward and is the same on your car as most others (you have to remove the splash guard under the engine, which is annoying, but after that - remove the drain plug, let it drain, remove the filter, then reinstall the filter (make sure you check the filter sealing surface is clean, then oil the gasket on the filter and spin it on) and the drain plug, fill 'er up, and you're good to go). Other maintenance you'll need to do is rotate the tires (pretty self explanatory, but if you don't have a floor jack and jack stands, can be annoying), change the cabin air and engine air filters (easy enough - remove the old one, put in the new one), change brake fluid (two person job - not hard, you need a tube to go from the bleeder screw to your used brake fluid container, and a wrench (forget the size) for the bleeder screws - also nice if you can have the car on jack stands with all 4 wheels off)

Other things are the plugs (not hard, but because they are on the side of the engine, access is more limited) but that's not until 60k miles.

Other than that, you want to inspect everything periodically (axle boots for cracks, condition of drive belts, condition of brake fluid (when it gets dark due to water uptake, you'll want to replace it as it gets increasingly corrosive), coolant level, oil levels (engine and transmission), etc.)

While $200 is pretty steep for what they actually do, if you aren't comfortable doing some of the things, or don't know what to look for in inspections, it's still cheaper to have them do it than to have something fail.

About the only thing I have the dealer do (other than warranty work) is work on the AC as that requires something to capture the refrigerant, charging system, etc. which I don't have.