Since 1904, the Rolls-Royce has been an auto icon. For many people, this is the car of their dreams.
If you’ve finally gotten the chance to own a Rolls-Royce, you’ll want to be sure you can care for it correctly. This iconic car has some special maintenance needs.
With the right care, a Rolls-Royce can stay on the road for decades. Read on to learn what makes these cars so amazing, and what you need to know about Rolls-Royce maintenance to keep yours purring.
The rich history of these cars is part of what makes them so well worth the extra maintenance.
The beginnings can be traced all the way back to 1884 when Henry Royce started his mechanical and electrical company.
By 1904, he made his very first car, a Royce 10 with two cylinders. In the same year, he met Charles Rolls, who was running one of the first car dealerships.
Rolls liked the Royce 10, even though it had only two cylinders. He agreed to start selling Royce’s cars, and a partnership was born.
Over the years, the company grew, becoming known for its innovative and luxurious vehicles. These sleek, iconic vehicles soon became a staple of the car industry. They are still among the most popular luxury vehicles around.
7 Tips for Rolls-Royce Maintenance
Whether you’re driving a vintage one or a new one, understand that Rolls-Royce maintenance is important. Let’s take a look at how to care for these cars.
1. Prepare to Pay More for a Mechanic
Those who drive a Rolls-Royce aren’t known for their frugality. When it comes to Rolls-Royce maintenance, you’ll need to be prepared to pay extra – or do it yourself.
Just an oil change can cost as much as $650. Each year, be prepared to pay as much as $3,900 in maintenance costs.
And, when repairs are needed, you won’t be saving any coins. It can cost hundreds of dollars just for a small door part – major engine work might cost you as much as a modest car.
This is one reason why a Rolls-Royce is a popular choice for people who do DIY maintenance. The more you know how to do yourself, the more affordable these cars become.
2. Stay on Schedule
Some cars keep powering through even when you delay oil changes and tune-ups.
However, the Rolls-Royce is a delicate machine, not to mention expensive to repair. You should be sure to stick to the regular recommended maintenance schedule for these vehicles. It will save you time and money, in the long haul.
3. Beware of Neglect
When buying and fixing a classic Rolls-Royce, you should be diligent in checking for signs of owner neglect. This can warn you against problems down the road (pun intended).
First, look at the car’s appearance. This is the easiest way to see whether or not it’s been well taken care of.
Are the leather seats cracked or faded? Is the wood trim peeling? Is the paint marred or damaged?
Although these cosmetic issues can be repaired, it will cost you. Be ready to spend thousands fixing up a worn-out Rolls-Royce. If you have the time and money, or enjoy doing the work yourself, this can be a great way to restore a classic car, but you need to know what you’re in for.
If a car looks neglected, the issues are no doubt mechanical as well as cosmetic.
Make sure to always open up the engine of a used Rolls-Royce. If the engine is extremely dirty, shows signs of oil leaks in the middle of the engine, or has worn-out belts and hoses, you have your work cut out for you.
Next, start the car and get a feel for how it runs. Pay attention to any strange sounds or smells from the engine. Smoke coming from the exhaust pipe is another bad sign.
Engine problems cost even more to fix than cosmetic ones do. Again, even very worn-out old cars can often be restored, but past a certain point, it may be more work than you want to take on.
4. Get the Right Tires
Your Rolls-Royce should have tires that are speed-rated at V or above.
Speed-rated tires are necessary to make a heavy car easy to handle on the road. They have stiff sidewalls that keep the vehicle agile. If you don’t have speed-rated tires, the weak sidewalls will make the car’s handling less responsive.
These tires cost more than the average tires, so factor that into your maintenance budget, as well.
5. Hurry Up and Wait
Not only can Rolls-Royce maintenance be expensive, but it can also be time-consuming.
You’ll find that some maintenance jobs require a special tool that has to be ordered before you can get to work. For example, replacing the front shocks means you’ll need to have the right tool (and it’s also a lengthy process).
6. Newer Models Need Electronic Repairs
In 1990, Rolls-Royce introduced the “electronic ride control” feature.
If this system breaks down, you won’t be able to fix it using regular shop tools. A special tool is required just to diagnose the problem, and you’ll need a shop that specializes in fixing Rolls-Royces to do the repair.
7. Buy More Batteries
The Rolls-Royce engine is hard on its battery. If your battery is more than three years old, it can fail at any time, so be prepared to change the battery often in these cars. With regular replacement, you’ll avoid problems.
Rolls-Royce Maintenance is Well Worth It
Sure, you’ll need to be prepared to spend more time and money on Rolls-Royce maintenance that you would for most other cars. But don’t get us wrong – the extra effort is well worth it.
This car is actually one of the best choices for a car repair enthusiast since it offers an exciting challenge for doing it yourself. As long as you’re willing to buy tools when needed and spend extra time doing the labor, there’s a lot of Rolls-Royce maintenance you can do at home.
The better these cars are taken care of, the better they’ll run, so don’t skimp on the maintenance. Ready to learn more about DIY car inspection? Learn how to check if your vehicle is ready for a road trip here.