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Poor Fuel Efficiency? Here Are Some Possible Causes

After driving our vehicles for a while, we start to understand how good or bad our vehicle's fuel efficiency is normally. You more than likely keep a mental note of how often you get gas and how much a tank costs you every once and while. However, what happens when you notice that your vehicle's fuel efficiency has greatly decreased, and what do you do next? It happens - due to certain causes, our vehicle's fuel efficiency can actually decrease, and we suddenly find ourselves getting gas more often and spending more money on fuel. If this has occurred, there is usually an underlying issue that is causing the decrease. Here are some possible causes of a decrease in fuel efficiency:  Bad oxygen sensor Defective coolant sensor Bad thermostat Engine misfiring Intake mainfold leak Worn spark plugs Dirty fuel injectors Dirty air filters Bad tires Poor driving habits These are just some of the common causes that can lead to poor fuel efficiency. If you notice a sud ... read more

Ways to Avoid Car Overheating

Summer time is the perfect time to jump in the car and drive off to the beach, a nice restaurant, a baseball game, or the pool. But because of the hotter, more intense weather, our vehicle’s are more at risk for overheating.  Here are some ways to help avoid car overheating and to keep your interior comfortable throughout the season for you and your passengers:  Try to park in the shade whenever possible Look into tinted windows or purchase a windshield sun shade When you first turn on your A/C, start them from the bottom vents. This will push the hot air up and cool your vehicle faster.  Keep your eye on the dashboard temperature gauge. If you notice that the temperature is unusually hot, you may want to have your vehicle inspected.  Make sure that your engine’s coolant is filled and clean.  Consider having a coolant fluid flush performed by your local mechanic to clean out the system and ensure that your engine is kept cool throughout summe ... read more

Strange Vehicle Smells and What They Mean

We’ve all smelled an unusually scent on the road before, such as the spray of a skunk on the highway or the heavy smell of gasoline when an eight-wheeler drives past. However, if you’re ever in your own vehicle, and notice a smell that doesn’t go away, don’t ignore it. A smell that won’t go away that you smell while driving is an indicator that something may be wrong with your vehicle.  Some causes of a smell are less urgent than others, but the only way to be sure of the cause is to bring your vehicle into our shop an inspection as soon as you start noticing the weird smell. Here are some of the usual scents and what they can indicate: Gasoline - This usually means that your vehicle has a gas leak. This could be from the fuel injector line or fuel tank.  Burning Carpet - A burning carpet smell could be a sign of a brake problem. This should be inspected as soon as possible.  Burnt Rubber - A burnt rubber smell could be coming from a dri ... read more

Never Ignore These Car Noises

Paying attention to the way your vehicle performs is important when it comes to realizing that something might be wrong with your vehicle. If you start noticing a strange noise, don’t ignore it! When we hear something out of the ordinary, it is usually a sign that there is something amiss. Here are the most important car noises that you should not ignore: Squealing noise or chirping noises coming from tires Scraping or grinding noises while braking Hissing sound coming from underneath the hood Clicking noise coming from underneath the hood Rapping or banging noise coming from underneath the hood Roaring noise coming from the exhaust Although the severity of the issues can vary, any noise is typically not a good sign. Pay attention to other symptoms as well, such as smells or lack in performance. If you’re check engine light has turned on as well, this is another indication that something is amiss.  As soon as you hear any of the noises above, don’t hesitat ... read more

Springtime Car Maintenance

Spring is a great time to take control of your vehicle’s maintenance. Driving in the winter weather can take a toll on our vehicles, causing wear and tear that can affect overall performance and fuel efficiency. Before your spring and summer road trip plans, be sure to come by our shop for a spring vehicle inspection. Here are the top spring maintenance items to keep your vehicle running smoothly into the summer! Read your vehicle’s owner’s manual and see if any recommended services are due Make sure you are current with your vehicle’s oil and filter change Have coolant levels, condition, and concentration checked Inspect belts & hoses for any wear and tear Test air conditioning and verify if it is working properly Check your tires - look at the overall condition, tread, and check tire pressure  Look at all lights, interior and exterior, to make sure they work properly including headlights, tail lights, and brake lights Change your windshield wi ... read more

Wiper Blades are a Safety Feature!

Wiper Blades are a Safety Feature!

Wiper blades are one of the most neglected safety features on a vehicle. However, when you need your wipers and they don't work properly, you instantly wish they worked right. We've created a video to show you how to replace your blades and we'll share that link at the bottom of this article.  One quick tip - we recommend replacing your wiper blades every six months. Airborne contaminants like oil, sunlight, and dirt all weaken the rubber blade. Weather plays a role too. Cold weather makes rubber blades rigid and brittle. Hot weather warps the rubber. It is easy to see when a wiper blade is torn at the end. But there are times a wiper looks okay when it's not. Here are some symptoms that can help you identify a worn or damaged wiper blade: Wiper blades that squeak or make noise are worn. Wipers that smear or streak your windshield are worn or damaged. Wipers that miss segments of your windscreen are damaged. Finally, remember your rear window wiper blade ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance

S.M.O.G. - How to Switch Lanes Safely

When it comes to driving, any safety tips or techniques that we can teach can benefit everyone on the road. We have all seen it - the driver who switches lanes without even looking, moving across several lanes without a blinker on, expectedly all other vehicles to move out of the way. Although it may work sometimes, this is a dangerous and risky way to drive.    Acronyms are a great way to remember key phrases, and the acronym S.M.O.G. was created for how to switch lanes safely. Remembering this acronym is easy and will make sure that you always change lanes on the road in a safe manner!   S - Signal  Always make sure that your blinker is on, signaling the direction that you are changing lanes. Try to have your signal on 3 to 5 seconds before actually changing lanes.   M - Mirrors Check all mirrors, including rearview mirror and side mirrors, for cars nearby before switching lanes to be aware of surroundings.  &nb ... read more

How often should my vehicle be inspected?

As a vehicle owner, it is important to understand the best way to keep your vehicle safe and reliable on the road. One aspect of owning a vehicle that isn’t as well taught as it should be is the idea of preventative maintenance. Preventative maintenance is essentially the idea that you should have certain small services performed on your vehicle periodically that will help prevent larger, more expensive problems from occurring. Preventative maintenance not only protects your vehicle overall, it will end up saving you lots of money over the years by avoiding those major repairs that can become costly.  One important part of preventative maintenance is vehicle inspections. A vehicle inspection is a quick, comprehensive look at your vehicle to determine if there is any obvious issue with a major component. It also looks at fluids to make sure that they are topped off and clean, as well as checking other parts such as filters and chambers. Many people are a little scared about ... read more

I Can't Drive 55!

I Can't Drive 55!

In 1974, President Richard Nixon, signed into law H.R. 11372 which was an Act created in response to an energy crisis the country was facing. A National Maximum Speed Limit of 55 mph was required for states to obtain federal funds for highway projects. Maybe this is why Sammy Hagar sang "I can't drive 55" in 1984! If you know the lyrics, the song is about a person who is getting pulled over for exceeding the 55 mph limit consistently. In all reality, I cannot remember the last time I drove down I-49 at 70 mph and didn't have every single car around me passing me at what seemed like warp speed. Anyway, I digress. In 1987 there were modifications to the National Maximum Speed Limit that increased the speed limit to 65. Maybe gas consumption did not drop as much as they expected? Or maybe Sammy had an impact on our good 'ole government! In 1995 the National Maximum Speed Limit was repealed completely! States were responsible once again for their own rules and re ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance

10 Winter Car Care Tips to Keep You Safe on the Road

10 Winter Car Care Tips to Keep You Safe on the Road

10 Winter Car Care Tips to Keep You Safe on the Road Driving in winter weather can be nerveracking. We've compiled ten areas of your car that should be inspected before winter driving - so you know you have the best opportunity to safely navigate the roads this season. Tires Tire Tread Tread provides traction which is necessary to keep the car connected with the road. This is especially important during wet and cold weather. Rain, snow, ice, or even mud can cause uncontrollable conditions without the right amount of tire tread. Tire Pressures As temperatures drop or fluctuate, the air inside your tires does as well. Decreases in temperature cause air to contract which lowers the air pressure in your tires. Checking tire pressures regularly is important especially when temperatures are constantly fluctuating. We recommend checking tire pressure when tires are cold. Brakes Brake Fluid Brake Fluid pulls moisture in from the air. Over time this moisture degrades the fluid so th ... read more

Categories:

Winter Car Care
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