April 29, 2016

Get Ready for Summer by Inspecting your Car

  Having the vehicle properly inspected now can help you to save time, money, and stress in the long run. It can also help keep your vehicle at top performance levels when you drive this summer. Keeping the tires inflated to the proper air pressure can help to improve the fuel efficiency. When you check the air pressure regularly, also take a few extra seconds to inspect the tires. If you notice any damage or wear, make sure to schedule and appointment so we can inspect the tires for you.   You will also want to inspect the air conditioner and cooling system of your vehicle. In the summer, the main reason for a breakdown is coolant problems and the engine overheating. This results from poor airflow around the radiator. Checking the radiator cap at the start of the summer driving season is also a good idea. Given the temperatures to which the radiator cap is continually exposed, the internal rubber gasket can end up cracked, deformed, damaged, or hardened, and the cap’s metal spring also weakens over time. You can also bring the vehicle in and we can inspect the cooling system for you.   Also make sure you inspect the oil for your vehicle. The engine oil must be replaced at recommended intervals using the weight or viscosity of oil required by your vehicle’s owner manual. Between changes, be sure to check the oil level on a monthly basis, adding fresh oil whenever necessary. Anytime you notice anything out of the norm with your vehicle, make sure to bring it in so we can inspect it for you. This can help you have a pleasant driving experience.  
April 22, 2016

Importance of Wheel Alignment for your vehicle

    To help maintain your vehicle and keep it in good working order, one of the things you should have done regularly is a wheel alignment. By doing this, you can help to extend the life of your tires. The tires also need the tread and air pressure checked. By having an alignment done when you need it, you can help preserve the life of your tires and other suspension and steering parts of your vehicle. Proper alignment will provide better gas mileage as the tires are at the correct angles so your vehicle has minimal resistance.   The road surfaces you travel on, potholes, hitting a curb, and everyday driving will affect your wheel alignment. Hitting potholes, curbs, and other hazards can disrupt your suspension and knock some of the calibrated components off. This will then make your wheels sit at improper angles, which can cause rapid tire wear and effect the steering and suspension.   You may also feel vibrations in your steering wheel as you drive. While some vibrations are typical, based on the surface you are driving on, but if you are driving on a smooth surface and notice vibrations, it is best to bring it in for us to inspect it. If you inspect your tires, you may notice there is uneven wear or tread being worn off on the edge.   Having a wheel alignment can help benefit you in several ways. The first way is that you save money. By having your tires aligned, your vehicle makes proper contact with the road’s surface resulting in less friction. When they are aligned they can go straight with little to no effort and will result in better gas mileage. This will also help your tires to have and maintain a longer life, as they will wear correctly and evenly. A properly aligned vehicle will enjoy better control, improved tire life, and a better driving experience for everyone.
April 14, 2016

Why Belts and Hoses are Needed for your Vehicle

  With owning a vehicle, you will want to make sure that it is in the best condition possible. This way it can be safe and reliable for when you will need to drive it. You can also inspect parts on your vehicle yourself. If you ever notice anything out of the norm, make sure to schedule and appointment so we can inspect it for you. When you inspect the vehicle, check the tires, oil, and even the belts and hoses. Without the belts and hoses, your vehicle will not be able to operate properly.   The timing belt is a notched rubber belt that allows the crankshaft to turn the camshaft. The camshaft opens and closes the valves in synchronized movement with the engine’s pistons. If the timing belt breaks, the engine will stop working. This can cause major engine damage. That’s why it is important to have your timing belt regularly inspected. If the belt is loose or has slipped the valves could open at the wrong time and be struck by your engine’s pistons. You may hear warning sounds that include a slapping noise coming from your engine, which can indicate a slipped belt.   Serpentine belts, also known as drive belts, provide power to the air conditioning compressor, power steering pump, cooling fan, air injection pump, and more. If your vehicle’s serpentine belt breaks, all of the engine parts it is powering will stop working and your engine could overheat and be damaged. Warning sounds can include a screeching noise coming from your engine, especially during start-ups on cold mornings or on sharp turns.   Coolant hoses include the upper and lower radiator hoses plus heater hoses. Some vehicles include a bypass hose. Hoses provide a flexible connection for coolant flow between the engine, radiator, engine and heating block. Tiny cracks can form from the inside that can eventually lead to a burst hose and overheated engine. Have your vehicle hoses and accompanying clamps inspected twice a year. This can help you to have an efficient vehicle that will operate at top performance when you drive.  
April 8, 2016

Drive Safe on the Road by Avoiding Potholes

    Potholes are an increasing problem on roads. This is because they can cause damage to vehicles and present a potential safety hazard. They are caused when moisture gets into the cracks in the road, which expands when it freezes. The holes get bigger as vehicles drive over them and damage the structure of the road below its surface layer. Weather conditions and repeated freezing and thawing cycles make the pothole situation worse.   Hitting a pothole can do damage to your vehicle. Initial impact on a vehicle can cause buckled wheels, cracks, cracked alloys, and it can knock out the tracking and wheel balancing. In some cases, hitting a pothole can result in loss of control of the vehicle.   It is important to keep an eye out for any potholes or damage on the surface of the road. By noticing a puddle, especially in the spring, it could hide a pothole beneath it. Also make sure to leave enough distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. This can help you to see potholes before you get to them. If you hit a pothole at higher speeds, it can increase the amount of damage that is done. Try not to apply the brakes when driving over a pothole, as this can place more stress on the front suspension.   If you hit a pothole, make sure to schedule an appointment so we can inspect the vehicle for you. If there is an issue, you will want to make sure it is inspected as soon as possible. This way you can prevent further damage being done to your vehicle. It can also help you to have a safe and enjoyable ride.