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Keeping a Car's Heart Beating with Proper Engine Care

2 Ford technicians discussing

The technicians employed at local Ford dealerships are trained to handle all kinds of engine maintenance services.

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2022 Ford F-150® Lightning

Proper engine maintenance will help keep vehicles on the road for years to come.

Ford Service Coupon delves into the inner workings of vehicle engine maintenance and provides a list of tips to ensure engine efficiency.

CINCINNATI, OHIO, UNITED STATES, May 18, 2023/ -- Maintaining a car's engine is crucial to ensuring its longevity, reliability, and efficiency. The engine can be considered the heart of the car, and neglecting its maintenance can lead to a range of problems, from decreased fuel economy and power to costly repairs and even engine failure. Regular engine maintenance can help prevent these issues and extend the life of the car.

From oil changes to spark plug replacements, following the manufacturer's recommended maintenance schedule and addressing any warning signs promptly can help keep the engine in top condition and avoid more serious problems down the road. Ford Service Coupon explains why engine care is critical to ensuring a vehicle's longevity and identifies a few red flags that can signal a need for repair service.

A Car Will Likely Give Fair Warning

A motor vehicle's engine is one of its most important and complex components, and over time it can begin to wear down or fail altogether. Recognizing the warning signs of engine failure can be crucial to preventing more serious problems and avoiding costly repairs.

Some signs may be obvious, such as strange noises or a sudden drop in performance, while others may be more subtle, such as decreased fuel efficiency or increased oil consumption. By paying attention to these signs and taking swift action, car owners can help to extend the life of their engines and keep their vehicles running smoothly and safely for years to come.

These seven signs can warn drivers of impending engine failure:

1. Unusual noises - If an engine starts to make strange noises, such as knocking, ticking, or grinding, it should be checked by a professional mechanic immediately.
2. Smoke - Excessive amounts of smoke coming from a car's tailpipe indicate serious engine problems.
3. Decreased performance - A car that feels sluggish or has difficulty accelerating or maintaining speed could be suffering from a problematic engine.
4. Overheating - It's important for drivers to check the engine's temperature gauge and take note of consistently high readings. An overheating engine is extremely prone to failure.
5. Warning lights - The "check engine" and other warning lights on a car's display are incredibly important to pay attention to, especially if they're constantly lit, as they can warn of serious engine issues.
6. Oil consumption - A car shouldn't burn through very much oil in a short amount of time, so excessive oil consumption is a major cause for concern.
7. Rough idling - If a driver notices that their engine struggles to stay running or shakes excessively when idling, it could be a sign of engine trouble.

Addressing any of these signs as soon as possible can help drivers avoid further damage and potential engine failure.

Energizing a Car's Engine

Consistent engine care is capable of preventing serious issues from happening in the first place. Instead of waiting for a problem to occur, car owners should be proactive when it comes to engine maintenance. There are several components that help the engine function, and each one needs its own set of tests to ensure optimal performance.

Arguably, the easiest way to keep a vehicle engine in good condition is to schedule regular oil changes. Depending on the type of car and how many miles it has, different types of oil may be more beneficial for a particular vehicle than others. For example, full-synthetic oil is the perfect way to keep a new car running smoothly. Better yet, these oil types allow many more miles between oil changes. Standard motor oil can require a change as soon as a car reaches 3,000 miles, but synthetic oil is capable of allowing up to 10,000 miles between changes in some cases. Oil changes can be performed at home, but visiting a mechanic like the ones at a Ford dealership will ensure that the job is done correctly.

Another integral component of engine care is keeping the cooling system functioning. This system includes parts such as the radiator, thermostat, water pump, and coolant. By ensuring that a car's cooling system is working properly, vehicle owners can help prevent dirt and other debris from accumulating inside the engine, which can lead to blockages or corrosion. Coolant levels should be monitored and checked on a regular basis, with drivers topping up their fluid levels as necessary. The coolant should also be examined for traces of rust or discoloration. Many experts recommend getting the entire system flushed every five years or 30,000 miles, whichever comes first.

Keeping Filters Functional

A vehicle's air filter is yet another critical piece of its inner workings that requires proper maintenance. Car air filters allow the engine to "breathe" and block harmful contaminants from entering the interior. Mechanics typically suggest that vehicle owners get their air filters checked about every 12,000 to 15,000 miles or at least once a year. However, those who frequently travel in dusty or dirty conditions may want to decrease the amount of time between checks.

Yet another important filter to keep an eye on is the fuel filter. A car's fuel filter works by trapping dirt, debris, and other particles that may be present in the fuel before it enters the engine. Proper care for this filter includes regular cleaning and replacement. Dirty fuel filters restrict the flow of fuel to the engine, which can cause performance problems and potentially damage the engine. Most drivers are expected to replace their fuel filter every two to three years or every 30,000 to 50,000 miles, but instructions in a vehicle owner's manual may indicate otherwise. A trusted mechanic from a nearby Ford dealership can also provide advice on when to change the filter.

Running on Empty is Not Recommended

Though some drivers typically wait until the very last second to refill their gas tanks, most automotive experts warn against this kind of behavior. There are several ways that running on empty can cause great harm to a vehicle, like damaging its fuel pump. When the tank is nearly empty, the pump must work harder than usual to draw fuel from the bottom of the tank, which can cause it to overheat and fail prematurely. An empty tank is also prone to sediment buildup, which can cause debris to get sucked into the fuel system and potentially clog the filter or injectors, reducing engine performance.

Another danger of driving on a near-empty tank is the risk of damaging a car's catalytic converter. An almost empty tank may not contain enough fuel to completely combust in the engine. This unburned fuel can then enter the catalytic converter, where it can react with high temperatures and damage the converter's ceramic substrate or the precious metals that are used to catalyze the reaction. Over time, this unburned fuel can also clog the catalytic converter, which can reduce the converter's efficiency and cause poor engine performance. In extreme cases, a clogged converter can cause the engine to stall or even fail to start.

By taking care of a vehicle's engine, car owners can expect to get plenty of miles out of their rides. Regular inspections are key to keeping an engine in good condition, which is why car experts recommend that drivers bring their vehicles to trusted auto shops for service, such as a local Ford dealership. Letting a professional handle maintenance issues is the best way to ensure the longevity of a beloved car or truck.

Affording maintenance service can be difficult for many, but it doesn't have to be with Ford Service Coupon, a money saving service available to all Ford customers in the Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee areas who need to save on essential auto services. Maintenance is a crucial part in owning any vehicle and Ford Service Coupon aims to help drivers across the country get the services they need the most at a price no one can beat. For more information on how Ford Service Coupon is helping these communities call 859-341-6603 or email them at

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