Yearly Archives: 2022

Do I need to replace rusty rotors?

Do I need to replace rusty rotors?

How much rust is too much rust? For most standard vehicles, brake rotors are made of cast-iron or steel, both of which rust when exposed to moisture. It’s inevitable that brakes will gather a little rust from being exposed to the elements. Light rusting is nothing to sweat over if its formation is supervised. If you’re worried about rust forming on your brakes, it’s easy to clean or request that your auto technician wipe it off when inspecting your vehicle. If your brakes are not performing at top speed, bring your vehicle into your local auto repair shop so they can assess the issue. Problems arise when rust builds up around the area where the brake pads touch the rotor. Rust reduces friction between the rotor disc and pads, causing the vehicle to wobble and shake when braking. If left alone, rust builds up on the outside of the brake pads’ path. This rust ring may cause your vehicle to shake and take longer to brake. Besides rust, small holes or "pits&qu ... read more

Categories:

auto repair

Why do my brakes fail?

Why do my brakes fail?

Brake failure is attributed to numerous factors, almost all of which trickle down to improper brake maintenance. Like any system in your vehicle, your brakes will fail if you do not follow a recommended maintenance schedule. The frequency at which you replace your brakes will vary according to vehicle usage. Always remember to ask your local auto repair shop for their personalized recommendation when it comes to vehicle maintenance. 1. Brake fluid A big factor that plays into your vehicle’s brake health is the brake fluid. This hydraulic fluid generates pressure needed to stop your vehicle effectively. If there’s a leak in the reservoir or if the brake fluid becomes contaminated, your brake system will start to degrade and eventually fail. Therefore, it’s important to make sure you are changing your vehicle’s fluid systems routinely. While the general recommendation for a brake fluid flush is every 2 to 5 years or 30,000 miles, each vehicle is ... read more

Categories:

Brakes

Why does my car need an oil change?

Why does my car need an oil change?

Cars need oil changes periodically to function. Oil is a lubricator for the moving parts of your vehicle’s engine. Think about all the internal components creating friction inside a car engine. That’s a lot of heat! Oil carries heat away from the combustion chamber and protects the engine from carbon and grime build-up. Overtime, the oil itself degrades and piles onto the mechanical parts if it is not changed periodically. As grime accumulates in the oil, the oil becomes less liquid and more solid, slowing down the cooling process. Neglecting old oil will strain and overheat your engine. Just like metal-to-metal brakes are ineffective, solidified oil will not prevent the metal components in your car from grinding together and damaging the car.   How often should I change my oil? Every manufacturer has their own recommended maintenance schedule, which can be viewed in the vehicle handbook. It’s best to ask your local auto repair shop for their ... read more

Categories:

Oil change

Get the 411: Wheel Alignment and How It Works

Get the 411: Wheel Alignment and How It Works

Why do I need an alignment? Alignment is necessary to ensure that your vehicle’s suspension (the system connecting the wheels to the powertrain and the rest of the car) is angled properly. Harsh roads, bumps, and curbs can push your car out of alignment over time. The wearing of tire rubber and sagging of suspension components, like the springs, over time also contributes to changing wheel angles that affect alignment. How does an alignment work? During an alignment, vehicles are secured onto a lift that clamps on to each of the four wheels. These clamps connect to a computer that assists the technician’s adjustments to each of the wheels. Doing an alignment also gives the technician an opportunity to make sure that all components of the car’s suspension is functioning normally. If any part of the suspension or steering is broken or needs replacement, this needs to be done before alignment can take place for safety reasons. An alig ... read more

Get Your Car Ready for Summer with Our 4-Point Checklist!

Get Your Car Ready for Summer with Our 4-Point Checklist!

Is your car ready for summer? If you're not sure, make an appointment at your local car doctor before your next trip. Especially after the winter months, it's important to check the all systems in your vehicle are running normally. The last place you want to be on a road trip is on the side of the road. Use this guide to ensure critical components in your car are ready to beat the heat. 1. Ready your rubber. Rubber is a huge component of every standard vehicle on the road today. It’s not only used for tires—the belts and hoses under the hood and windshield wiper blades are made of rubber, too! Intense summer heat can wreak further havoc on cracked rubber. If you or your technician eye any concerning damage, its best (and cheaper!) to replace a cracked serpentine belt now rather than on the side of the road. Tires are held together by glue, and glue and sun do not mix. Whenever you see ripped treads and loose rubber on the highway, that’s th ... read more

Categories:

car care tips

How do I find a reliable mechanic?

How do I find a reliable mechanic?

Finding a mechanic you trust your vehicle with may seem like a daunting task, but it’s easier than you think. Most people have at least one poor experience with an auto repair shop, and that experience can shape how they view interactions with other shops they go to. After you find a shop that does the kind of work you’re looking for, you may wonder how much you can trust them with your vehicle and money. So, what does credibility look like in an auto repair shop? 1. Look for an ASE Blue Seal of Approval. The fastest way to check a service center’s credibility is an ASE badge. This is the most widely acknowledged and accepted certification for professional technicians. Shops that employ technicians who are trained in some or all eight test categories receive this seal from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. ASE is a non-profit established in 1972 to advance vehicle service quality and ensure that automotive professionals a ... read more

Categories:

car care tips

How do I stop my car from hydroplaning?

How do I stop my car from hydroplaning?

If you’re wondering how to avoid hydroplaning, vehicle use and maintenance need to be considered. Hydroplaning occurs when a vehicle experiences a loss of traction in a wet environment, and slides or skids across the road. There are several choices you can make to eliminate the risk of your car hydroplaning in bad weather. 1. Choose defensive driving over aggressive acceleration. Slow down when driving in wet conditions. Maintain a speed at least 10 miles below the speed limit and lower your need to brake. Wet roads equal less traction so braking will do little in your favor, especially if you’re shooting down the highway at 65 mph. Going a safe speed will also eliminate your need to make sudden movements, which will increase the likelihood of your car hydroplaning. To reduce further risk of hydroplaning, try driving in the tracks of cars in front of you. The water or ice will have begun to sepa ... read more

Categories:

car care tips

National Car Care Month: Teslas and EVs

National Car Care Month: Teslas and EVs

As the National Car Care Month of April comes to a close, it seems right to go out on an electrifying note. Electric vehicles are becoming more commonplace on the roads today. Their attractive, eco-friendly design has convinced many drivers to go electric. Unfortunately, the price tag on these vehicles makes them less accessible (the Nissan Leaf is the most affordable EV in the game with an MSRP starting at just under $30,000). However, high-end companies like Tesla have struck close to perfection and quality with their sleek designs, attempting to make it worth the consumer's while. The name “Tesla” is an homage to Serbian engineer Nikola Tesla, creator of the alternating-current, or AC, induction engine used by the vehicle. Because Teslas run on pure battery power, they don’t need the usual fluid changes and transmission maintenance that standard vehicles require. The company does recommend ... read more

How You Can Drive Green on Earth Day

How You Can Drive Green on Earth Day

With gas prices through the roof and another Earth Day come and gone, it’s time to talk about you. Specifically, what you can do to increase your car’s fuel economy. Fuel economy refers to the number of miles a car can drive per gallon of gas. 1. Avoid aggressive acceleration. Road rage costs you, so why sweat it? According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center, drivers who obey speed limits and practice gentle braking and acceleration improve their car’s fuel economy up to 40% in traffic and up to 30% going highway speeds. Gradual acceleration is also kinder to your car, preventing faster break-down. 2. Lose the junk in your trunk! Extra weight reduces fuel efficiency in your car. Smaller ... read more

Categories:

car care tips

Why are my brakes smoking?

Why are my brakes smoking?

Why are my brakes smoking? The smell of burning can be scary when you're driving, and you start to notice it. Only to then find out that smoke is coming into your car. Many times, your brakes are to blame. If your brakes start to smoke, it is best to stop driving until the problem is fixed. Some of the most common causes and some things to look for if your brakes start to smoke are explained below. Stuck Brake Pads As time goes on, your brakes will get dirty with brake dust and corrosion. This is because they are exposed to the weather. Buildup of dust can make your brake pads stick to your disc. People who have this happen cannot move the brakes or the wheel can't move freely. The friction causes a lot of heat that does not need to be there, which often causes a b ... read more

Categories:

Brakes
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