If you're a frequent visitor of the auto repair shop, you’ve probably heard the terms “fluid change” and “fluid flush” being thrown around before. While they both refer to the process of replacing a car's fluid, they are not interchangeable terms. There is a distinction between the two terms, and we'll discuss them in our blog today!
Fluid Change vs. Fluid Flush: What’s the Difference?
A fluid change involves draining the old fluid and refilling it with new fluid. This method replaces only a portion of the fluid in the system, leaving some of the old fluid in place. A fluid change is typically less expensive than a fluid flush, but it doesn’t clean the gunk out of the system.
A fluid flush, on the other hand, involves completely clearing out all the old fluid and replacing it with fresh fluid. This more intricate process involves using specialized equipment to flush out all the old fluid and debris that may have accumulated in the system. A fluid flush is a more thorough and comprehensive service than a fluid change, but it is also more expensive.
Which Fluid Needs Which Service?
The following are some common fluids in a vehicle and which service they require:
- Engine Oil: A regular engine oil change is sufficient to keep the engine lubricated and functioning properly.
- Brake Fluid: Brake fluid should be completely replaced every 2-3 years or as recommended by the manufacturer. A brake fluid flush removes all the old fluid and debris from the system, ensuring that your brakes work effectively.
- Power Steering Fluid: Power steering fluid should be flushed every 75,000 miles or as recommended by the manufacturer.
- Transmission Fluid: Transmission fluid should be changed every 30,000-60,000 miles or as advised by the manufacturer. In some cases, a transmission fluid flush may also be necessary.
- Coolant/Antifreeze: Coolant/antifreeze should be flushed every 2-3 years or as recommended by the manufacturer. A coolant flush removes all the old fluid and debris from the system, preventing severe problems such as overheating and corrosion.
It’s important to note that these are general guidelines, and every vehicle may differ due to its age, model, and circumstance.
If you love your vehicle and want it to stay in top condition, fluid maintenance should never be overlooked. Please call or visit South Denver Automotive for all your vehicle fluid services.