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Does Your Car Need a Tune-Up?

August 11, 2022

Does Your Car Need a Tune-Up? | Columbia Auto Care & Car Wash in Columbia, MD. Closeup image of old and new spark plugs in the hands of a mechanic with a car engine at the background. Concept image of car tune-up.

Cars are complex machines. They’re built to last. But that doesn’t mean they’ll deliver peak performance forever. Over time, the wear and tear of driving take a toll on a car’s engine, and it will need a car tune-up. 

But this isn’t the tune-up of the days of yore. As cars have evolved and gotten more computerized and sophisticated, the automotive tune-up process has followed suit. Fortunately, the mechanics at Columbia Auto Care & Car Wash uses the latest and most advanced tools to perform car tune-ups on an array of models. 

Some of the top questions we receive at our facility in Columbia, MD are, “Does a tune-up make your car run better?” and “How do I know when I need a tune-up?” To provide clarity, let’s look at the modern car tune-up process and the three signs that your car might need one.

What’s Involved in a Car Tune-up?

In the old days, a car tune-up was a complex procedure. Many likened it to tuning a musical instrument. This was because everything in early vehicle engines needed periodic fine adjustments to keep every part working together in harmony. 

Today, though, cars have onboard computers that allow those adjustments to be made on the fly to keep engines humming along. A tune-up typically refers to an engine and systems inspection and the routine replacement of things, like the engine’s spark plugs, coil packs, and ignition wires.

3 Signs Your Car Needs a Tune-Up

Today’s tune-up is more of a routine service event and less of an art form. But it’s no less necessary for modern cars than in the past. The difference is that modern cars won’t need tune-ups as often. 

Here are three signs that your car might need one soon.

Does Your Car Need a Tune-Up? | Columbia Auto Care & Car Wash in Columbia, MD. Image of a dashboard of modern car. Screen display of different car status warning lights.

1. Declining Fuel Mileage

One of the telltale signs that your car might need a tune-up is when you start seeing declining fuel mileage. 

Many cars today include a mileage indicator on their dashboard display, making this an easy symptom to spot. Even for cars without such displays, it’s easy to notice having to fill up your gas tank more often. 

In either case, poor mileage indicates that your engine needs attention, so a car tune-up could be a good idea.

2. An Illuminated Check Engine Light

The good thing about today’s computerized engines is that they’re capable of detecting problems before you experience any obvious signs of trouble. When the computer detects a problem, it will illuminate the check engine light on your dashboard. 

An illuminated check engine light is a sure sign that something’s wrong and not something you should ignore. A car tune-up could be just what you need to fix it.

3. Hearing Unusual Sounds From Your Engine

No matter what car you own, you’ll hear the engine running. It’s a good idea to try and learn the sounds your car makes during regular operation. If you start to hear anything unusual coming from under the hood, you’ll know you need to head to a mechanic in Columbia, MD. 

A rough-running engine can generate plenty of odd noises. This will let you know that you need a car tune-up.

Contact Columbia Auto Care & Car Wash for a Car Tune-up in Columbia, MD

Now that you know what a tune-up is and when you might need one, there are only two more questions to answer. 

The first question is, “Does a tune-up make your car run better?” The answer is “absolutely.” 

The second is, “Where should you go the next time you need a tune-up in Columbia, MD?” This is an easy one. You should come and visit Columbia Auto Care & Car Wash. 

Call us at (410) 740-9890 or fill out this appointment form. You can also stop by our auto repair shop at 10611 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia, MD 21044.

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