What is the minimum routine maintenance my car needs?

I don’t trust what the Honda dealership recommends, because they’re always trying to upsell me. I just want to know what REALLY needs to be done when. Where can I find a reasonable maintenance calendar?

There isn’t a maintenance schedule in your Owner’s Manual, or in a separate booklet that was provided by the manufacturer?

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Your owners manual will have a chart for that. The only thing that might be different is that most of the highly regarded mechanics here say change automatic fluid more often the Honda says .


The owners manual contains all that info.


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Open your glove compartment and look in your OWNERS MANUAL.

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You’re not going to find one single right answer about this, because every driver and every car is a little bit different. The factory scheduled maintenance in your owner’s manual is a good place to start, but there are often things that we (shops) recommend doing more frequently or on an as needed basis that exceed the factory schedule.

For example, if your car is over 6 years old and still has the original battery, I’m going to recommend you replace it. Even if it tests good today. That’s because after 6 years the chances of unexpected or sudden failure increase greatly. Any my goal for you is to have a car that starts every time. The goal is not to get every last day of service out of your battery.

Bottom line, when I recommend a service for your car, I can look you in the eye and tell you exactly why. Perhaps you should ask your friends, neighbors, coworkers to recommend a good independent garage.

My wife and kids go to the dentist every 6 months for a cleaning and exam. I go to the dentist whenever something hurts or is broken. Over the last 30 years my wife has spent a lot more money at the dentist than I have. Which one of us is smarter?

@KristinDzugan If this is the 2007 Honda Accord you asked about 2 years ago there may be several things that you should have done . An independent shop that your friends , coworkers or relatives have used should give you a list . Of course they will charge a fee for looking your vehicle over but with the vehicle shortage and high prices it will be money well spent.

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There isn’t a traditional maintenance schedule in the owner’s manual.
Honda vehicles use a maintenance computer, the display will show A, B, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7.
The chart in the manual shows the Maintenace for each code displayed.
Example below.

This link will show the maintenance codes for the vehicle you select from the scroll down;

Maintenance Minder | Maintenance Schedule | Honda Owners Site

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I don’t know. Which one is smarter? I guess if your teeth are in good shape, then you are. If you’ve got Austin Powers’s smile, then they are.


I disagree with this analogy, because some people have more troublesome teeth and gums, for genetic reasons and more.
It’s not like two cars that might need very similar maintenance.
My mother had full dentures by age 40 and lived to 97.
My father died with all 32 teeth at age 52 of a bad heart.

p.s. checking tire pressure should be part of any minimum maintenance routine.

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My mother was inculcated with the importance of preventive dental care, and as a result, when she died at the age of 92, she still had all of her natural teeth. By contrast, my father’s family wasn’t very gung-ho on dental care, and he had full dentures by the age of 70-something.

But, I think that genetics also play a part, as I “inherited” teeth like my mother’s, while my brother wound-up with teeth like our father.

“Minimum” maintenance?

If car is still under warranty then whatever the manufacturer recommends, either from your Owner’s Manual or the Deal should be able to provide a printout.
If out of warranty, the absolute minimum is quality oil changes, coolant changes, brake flushes and transmissions flushes at the manufacturer recomendations and locate a good independent mechanic to keep an eye on everything else.

For other’s dental comments, growing up in a pre-novocain and pre-dental turbine era, through my teens I would do practically anything to avoid going to the dentist … untill I got an abscess the same darned night I was taking my wife out to a very expensive anniversary night out. Let’s just say it felt like Sonny Liston and Ali were taking turns on my jaw, hardly a romantic evening! :confused:
Today still coil up like a $5 watch everytime I go and damn the Hygenist (who I’m convinced is a S&M practictioner) and still have my original choppers but the point with both is do you want to pay now or pay 10X more later?

Minimum maintenance depends on how long you plan to keep the car. Certainly some are more proactive than others.

Do what the manufacturer says to do. If you don’t, you risk losing your warranty coverage on any problems.