Thirty years ago, the spring-tune up was an annual tradition that involved changing spark plugs, switching to a summer motor oil and greasing ball joints. Today, with the evolution of vehicle design, many of the old spring tune-up tasks have been made redundant, and yet it’s more important than ever for drivers to inspect their vehicles for wear, especially after winter.
“Our environment is hard on vehicles, whether you’ve got rain and hills, gravel and heavy snow or bumper-to-bumper traffic and potholes, it all causes wear and tear that’s accelerated by winter,” said Sean Thompson, mechanical program manager at Kal Tire.
During April, Kal Tire is teaming up with ‘doctor of cars’ Bill Gardiner for a cross-Canada tour to show drivers how winter conditions can impact a vehicle’s safety and performance.
“The spring tune-up has become important for different reasons,” said Thompson.
For example, suspension components such as tie rods that would have been greased each spring before, now have ‘lifetime’ lubrication. Once that part is worn — more likely after the slush and grime of cumulative winters — it can only be replaced.
“Now it’s actually more important to have your vehicle looked at for wear and tear in the spring because parts that used to require frequent greasing are now in permanently sealed-in grease systems,” said Thompson.
“When we inspect components, we’re looking at what winter has done to really push these parts over the brink.”
Vernon-based Kal Tire is Canada’s largest independent tire dealer and one of North America’s largest commercial tire dealers.
Also, Kal Tire’s mining tire group is a global leader operates in more than 150 mine sites across five continents.
The company has warehouse facilities across Canada servicing more than 250 Kal Tire retail and commercial stores. As the largest truck tire retreader in Canada, Kal Tire owns and operates 10 truck tire retread facilities plus an additional five earthmover retreading facilities located in Canada, the United Kingdom, Chile, and Ghana, West Africa.
The company employs more than 5,400 team members.