December 29, 2014

External Checks to Conduct Before a Road Trip

There are some basic ways that we must check to make sure our vehicle is ready to handle any traveling you might do. Road bound vehicles should always have a few major external components inspected for proper function. This way you can help to ensure that the vehicle is safe and reliable to drive when you travel. Without proper maintenance checks, you can increase the chance for an accident to occur. This can cause extra time, money, and stress because it will result in a change of plans. Before you travel, make sure to bring the vehicle in so we can inspect it thoroughly for you. This way we can notice if parts or components are starting to wear out and fail. The Headlights are Important No matter where you are going, or what time of the day it is, having properly working headlights is a benefit. Headlights on a vehicle are used for seeing, but also for being seen. Headlights are great for seeing the road ahead of you. They are also valuable because they let you see more of the road. Others around you can also see where you are at if the headlights are on and illuminated properly. Well working headlights allows you the confidence to know that you are both seeing and being seen. This is one of the biggest ways to prevent safety accidents. Another big reason to verify that headlights work is that having one that does not work at night can get a person a ticket in many states. Also Check the Brake Lights Brake Lights should be checked every time before you go anywhere. Traveling long distances is a great example of how important the lights on your vehicle are. Brake lights should work on both sides, and have many components. In many vehicles, the rear turning signals and the brakes are in the same area of the lights. Also in that area is often the rear backup lights. Making sure that each set of lights works is another safety tip for the road. Like headlights, having a brake light that does not work is likely to get a person a ticket if pulled over. When you check the brake lights, also make sure to check the turn signals. This increases the safety because those around you will know which way you are turning. This can reduce the chance of them hitting you, or you hitting them. Inspect the Tires on a Regular Basis The wheels of a vehicle are the first part that gives a tire connection to the actual road surface itself. Tire pressure plays a huge roll in traffic accidents because often it is something such as over inflation or under inflation that causes a tire to blowout. Checking tire pressure is as easy as getting a small gauge from us and looking up in your owner’s manual what the proper air pressure should be in the tires of your vehicle. If you do not have your owner’s manual, you can often open the driver’s door or your glove box and find a data plate that usually will say what these things are. We can also recommend the proper amount that should be in the tires.
December 28, 2014

What the Check Engine Light Could Mean on Your Vehicle

It is important to drive your vehicle as safely as possible. One way to do so is by making sure that the vehicle is brought in for regular maintenances. Another way to tell of an issue is if the check engine light illuminates. This light can mean many different things, from a loose gas cap to a seriously misfiring engine. It is important to bring your vehicle in at the first sign of the issue because we can inspect it to ensure that everything is working efficiently with one another. If you ignore the warning, and you could end up damaging expensive components. It also can be a sign that your vehicle is getting poor fuel economy and emitting higher levels of pollutants. What the Check Engine Light Means The check engine light is part of the vehicle’s onboard diagnostics system. Since the 1980s, computers increasingly have controlled and monitored vehicle performance, regulating such variables as engine speed, fuel mixture, and ignition timing. In some vehicles, the computer also tells the automatic transmission when to shift. When it finds a problem in the electronic-control system that it cannot correct, the computer turns on a yellow warning indicator that is labeled check engine, service engine soon, or check powertrain. The light may be nothing more than a picture of an engine, known as the International Check Engine Symbol, perhaps with the word check. Knowing What to do if the Light Comes on If your check engine light illuminates, make sure to contact us and bring the vehicle in. If the check engine light illuminates, it will either blink or remain constant, depending on the problem. Either way, you should have the vehicle checked by a mechanic, although a blinking light or, on some cars, a red light instead of a yellow/orange light indicates a problem that needs immediate attention. In late-model cars, a blinking light usually indicates an engine misfire so severe that unburned fuel is being dumped into the exhaust system, where it can quickly damage the catalytic converter, requiring an expensive repair. If that happens, you should reduce power and have the car or truck looked at as soon as possible. If the light is steady, the problem is not an emergency, but you should schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Tips to Fix the Check Engine Light If you notice the check engine light turns on, make sure to do all that you can so the vehicle is operating the best it can. Look for any serious problems that might cause the issue. Check the dashboard for any other lights that might illuminate as well. Another tip to do is to tighten the gas cap. This may resolve the check engine light that is on. You can also bring the vehicle in and we can inspect it for any issues that it might have. This can get you back to a safe and pleasant driving experience when you travel.
December 27, 2014

Do not forget about the Cooling System of Your Vehicle

When inspecting your vehicle, it is important to check all the parts and components for it. To have the best maintenance possible, it is recommended that you bring the vehicle in so we can inspect it thoroughly. Part of the inspection may include the cooling system of the vehicle. The engine creates a lot of heat while you are driving. It is important that this heat is removed immediately. If it is not than there can be problems in oil degradation and possible overheating of your vehicle. This is why it is important that you are not only maintaining your cooling system, but that you understand the different components which have a lot to do with the cooling of your engine. This will help in making sure that you are able to maintain a cool engine at all times. Among the things that you will need to know about includes the radiator. The water pump is an integral part that you should know about. Additionally, you should know about the hoses and connections which help to maintain the temperature of your engine. This will help in making sure that you will be able to understand whenever there is a problem with the cooling system. You will also be able to make sure that you are keeping an eye out for these different elements in order to maintain a cool engine. The Importance of the Water Pump The water pump is one of the most important parts of your cooling system. It is responsible for moving the coolant throughout your engine. Without this, there is no way that the engine will be able to maintain its temperature. These parts are fairly durable and seldom, if ever, need replacing. This is something to keep in mind though. If there is a problem in which your engine is overheating, it could be very well that the pump has malfunctioned in some way. This will cause you problems in which you will have to pay more to repair. Issues with the Radiator The radiator is where the coolant goes after it has been through the engine. This is a large grate which allows air to move through it. There is a fan which blows against the radiator along with the air flow that you will be able to get from driving your car. As air moves over the grates, it removes the heat from the coolant and whisks it away. If there is a problem with your radiator, it can cause the coolant to not be able to flow through it. Of course, these problems could also cause problems in which air will not be able to flow through the radiator to cool the coolant. Hoses and Connections should be inspected There are two hoses which are connected to the radiator which are responsible for bring in the coolant and drawing it out. The upper hose and the lower hose are integral to the operation of the cooling system. Without them, the flow of coolant will cease. This is why if there is a problem with one of the hoses, it will need to be replaced as fast as possible. There is also a line which will allow hot air to escape from the radiator and to the exhaust. This will allow the hot air a place that it can go to.
December 26, 2014

Regular Maintenances can Improve Your Safety

The engine is vital to your ability to use your vehicle whenever you want to. Of course, along with your engine, there are many parts of your vehicle which will need to be maintained in order for you to be able to enjoy a great vehicle. Among the things that you will need to make sure of with your vehicle is that you will need to make sure that your wires are being inspected. You will also need to make sure that the oil is being changed on a regular basis. Always remember to inspect the tires as well. This helps the overall performance of the vehicle. Make sure to bring the vehicle in on a regular basis for the proper maintenances. If you are not sure of a schedule, we can help to advise you on one. This can make for a pleasant and comfortable ride. The Wires should be Checked When inspecting wires, we will be able to make sure that you have a vehicle which is not only providing the right amount of electricity to parts. This will also help in making sure that your vehicle will be able to have all of the proper safety components in place. This will help in making sure that you have lights which work, a radio which plays, as well as an engine which will provide power to every part of the vehicle so that you can enjoy driving. Change the Oil when Needed The engine oil is the life blood of your vehicle. By making sure that this is clean and topped off, you will be able to make sure that your engine is running properly at all times. You will need to make sure that you are getting changed on a regular schedule. By going over this kind of schedule, you will actually cause problems to the kinds of internal workings of your engine which are not easy to get to. It is such an inexpensive method to prevent expensive repairs. This can save you time, money, and stress in the long run. Checking the Tires on the Vehicle The tires are an important part of the vehicle. This is because they allow the vehicle to move so you can reach your destination. If you need to improve the handling or stability of the vehicle, make sure to check the tires. The tires should be inspected so they have the proper air inflation that is needed. If you notice that a tire loses air often, it could be a sign there is a leak in it. Also check the tread wear on the tires. The tread is what helps to grip the surface of the road when you drive. This can prevent the vehicle pulling or sliding on the road when it is slick out. It is also important to bring the vehicle in for an inspection of the tire alignment. If needed, we can align the tires so you travel better. This will also help to improve the fuel mileage of the vehicle.