Informational Guide

How Often Should You Get A Tune Up?

To keep your car in optimal shape, you want to get a regular tune up. But how often should you get a tune up? It depends on several factors.  

In this guide, we answer how often to get a tune up and show you a few signs your car needs a tune up. 

How often does a car need a tune up? It depends on the services you are looking for, as there are different types of tune ups. First, let's discuss the benefits of getting a tune up. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the regular tune up helps you conserve fuel. You can spend less money at the gas pump with the simple tune up. Additionally, you help protect the engine and its vital components with regular service. When the engine is in good health, it's going to provide the best performance possible. 

On the other hand, if you choose not to follow the regular maintenance schedule outlined in the owner's manual, you could allow serious damage to the motor. You don't want to pay for an engine rebuild or replacement, so it makes more sense to get tune ups. 

How often should I tune up my car? Let's look at a few of the most popular services, although yours might be different based on the make/model of your vehicle and how you drive it. 

giving a car tune up
  • Every 3,000 miles 
    This basic tune up involves a conventional oil and filter change. All fluids are topped off, and the cabin air filter is checked. 
  • Every 7,500 miles 
    This tune up is meant for cars that use synthetic oil. It includes the above services with better oil quality.
  • Every 15,000 miles 
    In addition to other services listed above, the fuel filter is changed.
  • Every 30,000 miles 
    This major tune up includes a transmission fluid flush and a coolant system check. The spark plugs might also need to be replaced, depending on what type they are.
  • Every 50,000 miles 
    All fluids are replaced if they haven't been already. This might include the power steering fluid, brake fluid, and differential fluid.
  • Every 60,000 miles 
    It's time to have the timing belt checked, and the PCV valve replaced.

Your vehicle might require something different, but this is a great general overview.   

7 Signs Your Vehicle Needs A Tune Up  


When the engine begins stalling, it's one of the major signs you need a tune up. When the engine stalls, it could be the sign of a clogged filter or bad spark plugs. This problem should never be ignored because it can lead to dangerous on-road situations. For example, if you stall in front of another car, you could cause an accident.  

Reduced Fuel Mileage 

One of the top warning signs of a tune up is when fuel mileage begins to suffer. The engine must be in prime working order to ensure that the right amount of fuel is used. When the system isn't running as it should, more fuel will be wasted, meaning you will need to spend more time at the pump filling up.  

Reduced Braking Capacity 

Getting a brake pad and rotor replacement is essential for maximum stopping power. Depending on how you drive and what type of brakes you have, the brake service will happen at a variety of intervals. However, one of the signs a car needs a tune up is when you have trouble getting the vehicle to stop on time. Don't mess around with this symptom, as it could lead to a dangerous situation.  

Difficulty In Starting The Engine 

Another one of the signs it's time for a tune up is when you can't seem to get the engine started. Not only does the car battery play an essential role in starting the vehicle, but the ignition system must also be in tip-top shape. Either way, the parts need to be looked at before you find yourself stranded in a dangerous situation.  

Steering Alignment Is Off 

Steering issues aren't always considered some of the signs that you need a tune up on your car. However, you shouldn't drive your vehicle once the steering is acting up. While many of these parts are often included in the regular tune up, you might need to have the fluid changed, which should be performed periodically. The steering complaints can also be caused by worn tires or suspension components. 

Strange Or New Noises 

If you hear any unusual noises, these are considered signs you may need a tune up. When everything is running right, the ride should be quiet and enjoyable. However, when something is going wrong, you might hear clicking, squeaking, squealing, or grinding. Any strange noise should be looked at immediately. It's your warning sign that something isn't running as it should.  

Warning Light Is On 

The modern vehicle is equipped with sensors and warning systems that help you see the signs you need a tune up. The Check Engine Light is one of the most recognizable alerts you might notice. However, you should also pay attention to the battery light, Service Engine Soon light, oil level light, and anything that comes on out of the blue.  

signs car needs a tune up

What Does A Car Tune-Up Normally Consist Of? 

The average car tune up depends on how many miles are on the vehicle and what your car actually needs. It doesn't make sense to perform services that aren't needed at that particular interval. However, there are multiple systems that could be included in a tune up. 

How often do you need a tune up? The most common type of tune up is the average oil and filter change. This could occur every 3,000 to 10,000 miles.  

Additionally, the car battery needs to be checked regularly. Plus, the ignition system should be regulated and checked. Most commonly, the spark plugs need to be replaced. However, with double platinum or iridium plugs, you will need less frequent tune ups.  

Tune ups should also include fluid changes. Aside from the oil, the transmission fluid, coolant, brake fluid, steering fluid, and windshield washer fluid needs to be constantly topped off or flushed. Any quality technician is going to check these fluid reservoirs to examine both the levels and condition. 

Finally, regular brake service can be seen as part of a tune up. If the brake pads or rotors are worn, it's time to replace them.  

care tune up cost

People Also Ask (FAQs)

How much should a car tune up cost? 

The price for a tune up depends on what you are having done and what type of vehicle you drive. It could cost anywhere from $50 to $500, on average.  

How often should you get a Hyundai tuned up? 

You can find the maintenance schedule in your owner's manual or talk to your local dealership. Most Hyundai models follow the same general principles as other vehicles for a maintenance schedule.  

Can I still drive my car if it needs a tune-up? 

If the vehicle still runs, you might be able to drive it. However, running the car when systems are failing only creates premature wear to the vital parts. If you continue driving, you could create permanent damage. 

How long does a tune up take? 

Depending on what services are being offered, the average tune up might take thirty minutes to four hours. If you are just getting an oil change, the tune up time won't take long.  


How often should you do a tune up? It depends on what type of vehicle you own and what your driving style is. By watching the signs that I need a tune up, it becomes simple to provide what the vehicle is requiring.