When my first pickup was handed down to me at the age of 17, my dad told me that if I wanted it to last, I needed to change the oil and filter every 2,000 miles, so that’s what I did. The 1980 Ford had 160,000 miles on it when I sold it and it still started and ran as smoothly as the day I got it. I learned a lot about how to maintain a vehicle with that first pickup, and I continued to learn as I made my way through engineering school. Even after more than a decade designing and managing industrial equipment, the basic lesson never changed. Keep up with routine maintenance and always do the job right.
Just as dad gave me my first pickup, he also gave me his last when he passed away last year. Farm life is as tough on a truck as it is on the farmer. After 166,000 miles of spine jarring gravel roads and farm access lanes, dad’s F-150 shows its fair share of wear. The black climate control knobs are worn smooth to the point of exposing the white plastic, and the truck’s Iowa roots are betrayed by a quick glance at the rust under the doors, accelerated by harsh Iowa winters and the constant barrage of gravel. Despite all of the wear and tear, the truck started perfectly when I picked it up. As I rolled south towards Kansas City, I glanced at the oil change sticker and realized that it wouldn’t need another oil change for several thousand miles. Even after almost two decades of semi-retirement, dad never stopped taking care of the equipment that he earned a living with.
When I made it back to Kansas, my 13 year-old didn’t waste any time in asking if he would get grampa Madsen’s truck to use in his lawn mowing business when he was old enough. The realization that it might be my turn to pass along his first pickup was just something I had not thought of yet.
We all have our reasons for taking care of our car. Maybe we want to pass it along to the next generation, and maybe we just want to keep it in good condition so that it maintains its value at trade-in time. Whatever your reasons are, you can be confident that when you call clutcher.com for service, you won’t just get convenience. You will have the peace of mind that your investment will get the same level of care as my first F-100 and dad’s last F-150, and because your family depends on your car just as our family depends on ours, you will get the same level of detail as our family hauling Fusion Hybrid.
Kevin’s activities outside of clutcher.com include an earnest attempt to understand the “off-sides” rule in youth soccer, driving grain trucks at harvest time, and Thursday night basketball with the family.
In addition to being an entrepreneur with a passion for cars, Kevin is a licensed Professional Mechanical Engineer, and maintains his original license in the state of Nebraska.
Kevin Madsen: Please expect a slightly older, rounder, more casual version in person.
The well-worn F-150 retires to city life
Taking a breather at Electric Park in Lenexa