Keeping your limousine looking great and operating in top working condition is essential for the professional chauffeur. Nothing is more embarrassing and frustrating then a breakdown when you have clients in your limousine. According to a November article which appeared in the Los Angeles Times, you can help avoid these business-busting situations if you pay close attention to some simple maintenance issues that, if not attended to, can become very costly oversights. As a professional chauffeur, you should not neglect performing the following four essential maintenance procedures regularly throughout the year.
Changing The Oil
With older vehicles, the rule of thumb used to be that a change of oil should be performed every 3,000 miles. However, improvements in engines and motor oil have made that schedule outdated. According to ConsumerReports.org, most vehicles are now designed to go 7,500 miles or more between oil changes. So be sure to check your owner’s manual for the recommended oil change schedule and oil viscosity. For modern, luxury limousines, it’s best to choose a premium, high-performance motor oil; one that gives your vehicle increased fuel efficiency. This can help you increase the number of miles you can travel between oil changes, saving you time, money and reducing the environmental impact by using and disposing of less oil.
Check Tire Inflation
Don’t wait until the air pressure level in your tires makes them look like the air is low. It’s a minimal investment of about $15 for a good digital tire gauge which can easily be stored in your glove compartment. Check your tire pressure every two weeks, and be familiar with the manufacturer’s recommendations for the correct pressure, usually found posted on the inside of the driver’s door. (Note that those numbers are based on readings taken when the tires are cold.) Proper tire inflation gives the vehicle a smoother ride and improves its handling and fuel efficiency.
Check Tire Tread
No one wants to experience a dangerous tire blowout. Check tire tread, especially if your tires have been on your vehicle for several thousand miles. Take a penny and place it in the tread with Lincoln’s head down. If you can see the top of Abe’s head, you probably need new tires. Laws in most states consider tires legally worn out when tread has worn down to 1/16 of an inch of remaining tread depth. Proper tire tread depth can also help reduce hydroplaning on wet road surfaces.
Check Your Coolant
Over time, dirt and contaminants can build up in the coolant fluid making it less effective in helping to keep your engine cool and keeping the engine block from freezing in extremely cold temperatures. It’s best to change your coolant every four years depending on your driving habits and miles travelled. In extremely hot temperatures, change the coolant more often.
Take the time to attend to these simple, but critical, maintenance items. It’s time well spent.