My previous car was a used 92 Camry. Other than check air, change oil,
and change muffler when it became noisy, I did not do any proactive
maintenance. As a result a few things failed on me at most inconvenient
moments: radiator, water pump (which required changing timing belt
too), battery. As I often found myself in emergency sits, I wasn't
always able to plan where work should be done, I had to take what I
I just bought a 98 Camry with 80K miles on it. It is in great shape and
I want to keep it for at least five years, maybe until 150K. I want to
avoid my previous mistake and be proactive about maintenance, but also
not throw away any good parts that would last until 150K.
The previous owner just got a new battery. Tires are Regata 2 with 35K
miles. Because of a flat I have had them evaluated repeatedly and they
seem good for 1-2 years.
How should I approach the maintenance of this car? What should be
done and when?
Secondly, where should such work be done? I am so happy to be able tp
plan that, instead of being limited by who is near and who is open
during a holiday weekend!
Are big national chains like Sears, Pep Boys, WalMart etc any good?
CarX, Midas, Firestone? (Recommendations for places local to Chicago
are also welcome.)
I stopped at a local garage in an area where I had to kill time today.
He suggested (1) changing belts (incl timing) and (2) getting a
tune-up, even if nothing seems wrong. Is that good advice?
He was unsure about water pump: it would be $80 if done with timing
belt but a lot more if it had to be done on its own, but nothing is
wrong and it could possibly last.
Anyway, dear experts, I would be most grateful for your guidance on how
to keep this car perfectly maintained. :-)