I have very reluctantly been watching my odometer climb, and when it hit 135,000 miles, my stomach churned. My auto-repair shop made it clear that I would need a tune-up at 135,000, but in my world, "tune-up" was code for spending a thousand dollars on parts I can’t comprehend.
So I decided to read up
on what other local writers are saying about regular engine maintenance. I learned about potentially dangerous fixes, like the driver's belt and cracked steering boot, but also that a tune-up can make cars more eco-friendly.
In my case, my car was leaking oil, but other tune-ups might reveal a faulty oxygen sensor, worn spark plugs, or a dirty air filter---all which can cost a driver three to four miles per gallon
I also learned that oil can make a difference when it comes to gas mileage. Synthetic oils, for example, can improve your fuel economy
, though they cost more up front.
If you’re looking to make your car even more environmentally sound, check out Boulder’s Green Garage
, which just opened last November. They call their mechanics "Carhuggers," offer a "green" oil change, and feature biodegradable engine and fuel additives.