Hello: I have a question about a 2003 Toyota Camry with 130,000 miles. Every time I get the oil changed the attendant comes out with a clipboard and a long list of items needed to be done. Such as flush the engine oil, flush the power steering fluid, start using high mileage oil etc. Should I do this? So far I have not given in as the car runs good and it’s paid for.
You sound like you take your car in for servicing on a regular basis. If so, kudos! A neglected car needs band aids (so to speak) to keep them running for a short period of time. A well kept Camry needs nothing until the universal signs of old age show up: burning oil, loss of power or fuel economy. As far as I’m concerned your car is just broken in.
Nothing needs to be flushed with specific flushing additives, since they can un-stick deposits that are better off stuck: engine flushes have been known to cause oil leaks, for example. So avoid those like the plague. That’s not to say that changing power steering, coolant, transmission fluids on a regular basis are for chumps. And with that…
Bonus! A Piston Slap Nugget of Wisdom:
Always wondered why service advisors come up with seemingly random things you simply must have? Like most things in life, follow the money and the answer awaits. How do you save yourself from this cash grab?
Read the owner’s manual and remind the service advisor that you know what the factory recommends. Then add common sense things like inspection for vacuum line deterioration, unspoken fluid changes (i.e. power steering fluid) when the fluid loses its trademark color or smell. Unless you have the misleading, common sense defying, information in the manuals of an oil sludging V6 Toyota or VW/Audi, the owners manual is all you need.
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