Have the oil and oil filter changed every 3000 miles if you are using conventional oil and 5000 miles if you are using synthetic oil.
What is synthetic oil and what are the benefit? Most synthetic oils are synthesized-hydrocarbon molecular chains rather than distilled crude oil. The result is a slicker more durable oil that equates to less friction and longer drain intervals. In real world terms it means less engine wear, better fuel economy, more horse power and less environmental impact. For more information visit:http://www.carcraft.com/techarticles/synthetic_vs_conventional_oil/index.html
When should I have the tires rotated and why? Have the tires rotated every 5000 to 6000 miles. If you have your oil serviced atDr. Floyd's Garagethis can be done every other service or every service if using synthetic oil. The purpose of tire rotation is too compensate for uneven wear of the front tires that results from turning, therefore evening out the wear as the front tires are moved to the rear.
Why do I need to have the battery connections cleaned? Just like your computer at home needing a good or "clean" power source to operate correctly, your car's computers are no different. The battery is the "clean" power source for your car. Without a clean source of power the charging system can't operate correctly, therefore can't supply the cars computers with clean power. As well the alternator works harder to recharge the battery. Low battery charge will also damage the starter due to low amperage, and a continuously low battery will damage the battery.
What is the "Check Engine" or "Service Engine Soon" light and what does it mean? The light is a message to you that one or more of your cars computers have encountered an error or fault of some kind concerning your cars emissions and "set a code". New cars can have thousands of codes that help lead the technician down the correct diagnostic path, any one of which can turn the light on. These errors or faults can be as simple as a loose gas cap to a catastrophic misfire that will destroy the engine or catalytic converter/s. The important thing to remember is the computers on the car can manage the faults so well that you may not know anything is wrong, "The car runs fine", but in fact be catastrophic. And - NO - The parts store cannot tell you what's wrong, they can only tell what the code is!
How often should I have the fuel filter changed and why? Some manufacturers recommend as often as every 5000 miles while others don't have a replaceable filter at all! Follow your vehicle manufacturers recommendations but as a general guideline Dr. Floyd's Garage recommends replacing the fuel filter every 15,000 miles. The benefits to changing the filter are ensuring a clean full volume fuel flow to the engine resulting in peak performance, and less stress on the fuel pump resulting in longer fuel pump life.