People have long associated the arrival of spring as a sign to tidy up. While we sort through and scrub our homes, it is easy to forget to direct that same energy towards auto repair. The seasons affect us all, vehicles included, and a visit to your local mechanic could make or break your springtime jubilee.
Breathe In, Breathe Out
If you own a home or an air conditioner, there is a strong chance you have had to deal with an air filter replacement. These filters function by extracting harmful debris and contaminants from our environments, substances that would otherwise reduce air quality and airflow. When it comes to auto repair, three filters actively sift impurities:
· Fuel Filters act as a debris screen in the fuel line, ensuring your fuel is free of contaminants.
· Cabin Air Filters prevent harmful particles like smoke, smog, and pollen from entering the passenger cabin.
· Lastly, there are Engine Air Filters, which protect your engine cylinders from dirt and debris.
When and Why
With the passage of time, all filters lose efficacy as they are laden with dirt and contaminants. As a rule, air filter replacement should happen once a year or every 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. If not, we run the risk of a performance drop or even a major component failure. Each filter shows symptoms of wearing down, it is up to us (or our favorite mechanic) to read these signs and act accordingly.
Signs and Symptoms
Engine Air Filters
These show several signs of wear and tear: symptoms such as reduced power, low throttle response, weaker acceleration, and an overall increase in engine wear and tear.
If you notice that the air coming from your AC vents is weak, or a general decrease in-cabin air quality, your cabin filter is likely in need of replacement. This filter guards your nose, removing all the mold spores, dust, pollen, etc. that would normally find their way inside.
A dirty fuel filter reveals itself by reducing fuel economy and causing abnormal or sluggish engine behavior.
Although easily forgotten, a well-maintained filter is crucial not only for the health of our vehicle, but for our personal safety and well-being. By communicating with your local mechanic and staying on top of routine repairs, we can ensure a clean spring and a clear summer.