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How to service your car

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  • Depending on the setup, it may be possible. If you are dismantling macpherson struts, the compression tool has to be used - it's a dangerous job even with the tool and something I wouldn't advise you to do if you're unsure.




  • brilliant thread, thanks to everyone who's posted advice...

    just a quick question;

    when you leave your car in for a service, is there not, i dunno, some tuning up or anything they do? is it "just" the oil, filters, maybe brakes? if that's it, i'd defo give it a try!




  • Thanks for all the advice here.
    How diifficult would it be to change the oil in my Volvo S40, in my own driveway?
    Would I need to park the car over one of those pits for this?




  • getcover wrote: »
    Thanks for all the advice here.
    How diifficult would it be to change the oil in my Volvo S40, in my own driveway?
    Would I need to park the car over one of those pits for this?

    No you wouldnt need a pit, just jack up the car and put a stand under it also, locate the oil sump nut and filter screw it off and drain the oil, when its finished renew the oil filter and tighten up the sump and filter, put her back down on all four wheels and replace the oil.




  • Guys I have a 07 Passat thats in need of a service. Im seriously thinking of giving this a go. But when it comes around to selling the car (not that Ill be doing it anytime soon) would you not need a service history?


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  • Guys I have a 07 Passat thats in need of a service. Im seriously thinking of giving this a go. But when it comes around to selling the car (not that Ill be doing it anytime soon) would you not need a service history?

    Keep the invoices AND MAKE SURE you get the right oil. DO NOT skimp on the oil!




  • Guys I have a 07 Passat thats in need of a service. Im seriously thinking of giving this a go. But when it comes around to selling the car (not that Ill be doing it anytime soon) would you not need a service history?

    Think about it yourself, if you were buying a car privately and the guy told you he'd been servicing it for the last few years himself, hoe confident would you be?!!!

    Having said that if you're not intending on selling soon, give it a shot but i'd 100% recommend still bringing the car to a garage at some stage to check out brakes, run diagnostics, etc if you want to keep the car in decent nick.




  • Just came across this thread. Very good information here.
    Thought the link below might be useful as an indicator of things that need to be checked regularly.

    http://www.bmw-planet.com/2009/03/01/faq-what-is-done-during-inspection/




  • Guys I have a 07 Passat thats in need of a service. Im seriously thinking of giving this a go. But when it comes around to selling the car (not that Ill be doing it anytime soon) would you not need a service history?

    Just a note to say they usually have a engine cover underneath those passat's. There's a couple of screws holding them on.




  • Guys I have a 07 Passat thats in need of a service. Im seriously thinking of giving this a go. But when it comes around to selling the car (not that Ill be doing it anytime soon) would you not need a service history?
    Have a look at this thread. It's for a diesel, but has good pics and might give you some pointers. As others have said, get the correct oil!


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  • Volvoboy wrote: »
    No you wouldnt need a pit, just jack up the car and put a stand under it also, locate the oil sump nut and filter screw it off and drain the oil, when its finished renew the oil filter and tighten up the sump and filter, put her back down on all four wheels and replace the oil.


    I have done this job on alot of cars before so I could nearly do it in my sleep. I dont buy an oil filter wrench when I can use a large hose clip around it and tighten it and then hit the screw thread screw with a screwdriver.I dont put a screwdriver through the filter because 1 it makes a mess and 2 if the filter is the wrong one the old one can be replaced temporarly. Bit tight like that:P.One thing tho is if you are jacking up the car and open the sump it is best to leave the car down off the jack while the oil is been drained cause otherwise the car wouldnt be level and you might not drain all of the oil.




  • jimmyw wrote: »
    I have done this job on alot of cars before so I could nearly do it in my sleep. I dont buy an oil filter wrench when I can use a large hose clip around it and tighten it and then hit the screw thread screw with a screwdriver.I dont put a screwdriver through the filter because 1 it makes a mess and 2 if the filter is the wrong one the old one can be replaced temporarly. Bit tight like that:P.One thing tho is if you are jacking up the car and open the sump it is best to leave the car down off the jack while the oil is been drained cause otherwise the car wouldnt be level and you might not drain all of the oil.

    Thats fine for metal oil filters however a lot of the cars on the market are now using paper oil fiters in order to reduce waste. The oil filter housing cover is a screwtop and made of plastic. Using a strap wrench is only asking for trouble as the strap wrench will invariably slip and you run the risk of the plastic over cracking if you squeze it too tight.


    I would always prefer to have the proper tool for the job rather than damage something or cause personal injury.




  • Thats fine for metal oil filters however a lot of the cars on the market are now using paper oil fiters in order to reduce waste. The oil filter housing cover is a screwtop and made of plastic. Using a strap wrench is only asking for trouble as the strap wrench will invariably slip and you run the risk of the plastic over cracking if you squeze it too tight.


    I would always prefer to have the proper tool for the job rather than damage something or cause personal injury.

    Oh absolutely. I was just talking a bit of tongue in cheek:P. I have not come across the newer type but can imagine how a wrench might damage it alright. How are you supposed to remove them new ones as a matter of interest.




  • ^ I think there's usually a long bolt running through the lid to the base of the filter housing. Same idea as the older Mercedes-Benz engines. Piece of cake to change those! :D




  • esel wrote: »
    ^ I think there's usually a long bolt running through the lid to the base of the filter housing. Same idea as the older Mercedes-Benz engines. Piece of cake to change those! :D

    Must be something similar to the older style ones that was on old tractors then:cool: cheers!




  • jimmyw wrote: »
    Oh absolutely. I was just talking a bit of tongue in cheek:P. I have not come across the newer type but can imagine how a wrench might damage it alright. How are you supposed to remove them new ones as a matter of interest.

    I wrote this thread not so long ago. http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=2055757452

    There is pics in the thread of the oilfilter wrench i picked up off ebay especially for this purpose.




  • the pic were ya turned the bottle into a funnel, i looks like ya cut the bottle with the grinder... a bit overkill dont ya think ;)

    Nice job VB. good to see it in pics

    Sure if you have it use it haha.


    Great write up. Im determined to do mini services like that by myself. I may get some axel stands once I get some money in. See how im positive there? "one I get money in" . . . :o

    Great post!!!




  • Guys I have a 07 Passat thats in need of a service. Im seriously thinking of giving this a go. But when it comes around to selling the car (not that Ill be doing it anytime soon) would you not need a service history?

    Oh dear god, I agree with the poster who said use the right oil!
    Its the #1 cause of problems with the TDI engine. Im not familiar with the petrol at all but make sure you use the right spec oil if you want to sell it on or want the engine to last.




  • Here's a handy online Oil Advisor from Millers Oils.

    http://www.millersoils.net/1_Millers_frame_AUTO_WHICH_ENGINE_OIL.htm

    As bbk said above the oil spec is especially important for the PD engine as using the wrong oil will wear the cams which drive the injectors.

    A few people have referred to driving a screwdriver through the oil-filter. This is a very dodgy thing to do as you can damage the threads on the block if you have a very long threaded tube which the filter screws onto. A good filter removal tool is a great investment which will more than pay for itself over time.




  • Also, if you fail to get the filter off you are screwed


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  • Nicely done VB :).

    Ive only started to do the basic standard service stuff very recently and find it very easy,and have being thought just the way you demonstrated.
    The 7up bottle idea is cool,its a pain when you spil a bit of oil.




  • I only have one question. Anybody know where the fuel filter and pollen filter are on a 02 Impreza RX and how often would they need to be changed?

    Also would anyone suggest changing the oil in the rear diff at every service? I know how to do it and what oil to use just don't know how often if even it needs to be done? Surely the more I change the oil in it the better?




  • Fuel Filter

    Pollen Filter (scroll down for instructions)

    as for the driff, I do 30k a year and change it once a year




  • I have got premission from the author to link to this 'how to'. Hopefully it will be of use to the members here. This job was done on a mk1 focus and thanks goes to Liam from Fordfocusworld.com .

    Front pads and discs renewal.




  • Hal1 wrote: »
    I have got premission from the author to link to this 'how to'. Hopefully it will be of use to the members here. This job was done on a mk1 focus and thanks goes to Liam from Fordfocusworld.com .

    Front pads and discs renewal.

    I edited the link as it had changed on the site. Bump for this thread too. :cool:




  • Brilliant thread. Definitely going to try and do some myself soon.




  • I'm considering servicing my avensis, a 2.0 TDi, and was wondering is there's anything I need to know? I realise I need to have the right oil for these types of engines, but asides from that, should I expect any bother with the oil/fuel filters?

    Also, I read through the posts and I noticed that no-one has commented on handbrake tightening. Can anyone provide a rough guide to doing this, as my handbrake is quite loose at the moment and needs a good tightening. Also, is there a way to cehck if I need to have the cables replaced, and is this a job that's as simple as changing the oil?




  • Omega1987 wrote: »
    I'm considering servicing my avensis, a 2.0 TDi, and was wondering is there's anything I need to know? I realise I need to have the right oil for these types of engines, but asides from that, should I expect any bother with the oil/fuel filters?

    Also, I read through the posts and I noticed that no-one has commented on handbrake tightening. Can anyone provide a rough guide to doing this, as my handbrake is quite loose at the moment and needs a good tightening. Also, is there a way to cehck if I need to have the cables replaced, and is this a job that's as simple as changing the oil?


    For the avensis, from memory, there should be an adjustment screw under the handbrake lever itself, usually a 10mm accessed by lifting the rubbery handbrake gaitor.




  • Continuing on from the previous info people have posted in this thread I thought I would do a photographic run through of what a full service in an independant garage consists(read should consist) of.(yes work was a little quiet for once today:P)

    It might give you some pointers as to other relitavely straight forward things that people may not think of checking if they are doing their own car at home.

    I admit that some things are much simpler on a lift but you'll get the idea...hopefully:D


    Vehicle is a 2005 Ford Focus 1.4 with 72k on it.


    The first step is a test drive, this shows up any driving/handling/noises etc that may be present, not really relevent if you servicing your own car of course.

    Back in the garage and start with the external checks,

    So lights,
    DSCF1420.jpg
    DSCF1421.jpg

    Check the light alignment,
    DSCF1422.jpg

    Check the wipers, both an inspection for torn/cracked blades and for streaks and poor clearing of the winscreen, Also test the washers work and spray correctly on the windows.
    DSCF1427.jpg


    Next, a check under the bonnet for levels and fluid condition etc,

    Power steering fluid, was overfilled on this car so some was removed.
    DSCF1428.jpg

    Brake fluid level and boiling point checked. Most manufacturers specify that the brake fluid should be changed every 2 years.
    DSCF1429.jpg

    Coolant level and strength checked, the lower the coolant ratio, the less freeze protection the car will have,
    DSCF1430.jpg

    Also check the auxiliary belts for fraying, cracks or other damage,
    DSCF1431.jpg

    ........


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  • Next, with the car raised, or on axle stands,

    Check CV boots, Inner and outer as well as steering rack boots.
    DSCF1434.jpg

    This car had grease leaking from the inner CV boots which required two new retaining clips,
    DSCF1436.jpg
    DSCF1435-1.jpg

    Anti roll bar links, checking for damaged rubber boots, leaking grease, or play in the link joints,
    DSCF1437.jpg
    DSCF1439.jpg

    Suspension arm bushes etc, again checking for cracking, excess play etc,
    DSCF1441.jpg
    DSCF1440.jpg


    Also checking the exhaust system for corrosion, leaks at the joints, worn or damaged mounting rubbers etc,
    DSCF1438.jpg


    Then remove the wheels and inspect the tyres for wear, damage etc

    Front tyres in this case are only just above the safety limit, although well above the legal limit,
    DSCF1443.jpg

    However there is signs of misalignment on the inside edge(right in the pic)
    DSCF1444.jpg

    A rear tyre was found to be badly cracked/perished,
    DSCF1446.jpg

    The age of the tyre is likely to blame, 6 years is the recognised age limit for tyres before deterioration of the rubber and steel belts etc sets in. Manufacting date of the cracked tyres is feb 05(0805 = week 8, 2005),
    DSCF1447.jpg


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