Thursday, December 29, 2016

Buyer's Remorse: 7 Cars Owners Regret


More than 300,000 Consumer Reports subscribers told us which cars they like the least in seven different categories because of a range of issues.

Monday, December 26, 2016

SRS System - NAPA Service Assistant


Watch this video to learn all about the importance of having a regularly checked SRS Airbag system. If the SRS Dash light stays on in your vehicle, have the system checked by a NAPA AutoCare technician right away.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Don't Bother Buying Extended Car Warranties | Consumer Reports


You may be asked to buy one at the dealer, but a Consumer Reports survey found 55 percent of owners who purchased an extended warranty hadn’t used it for repairs.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

NAPA Service Assistant - Fuel System


High quality gas and adding fuel system cleaner can extend the life of your fuel pump and related systems. Not staying on top of this can allow dirt and particulates to get inside your fuel filter and cause damage, leading to costly repairs.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

How to Transport Holiday Foods Safely


The holiday season is fast approaching which means embarking on a seemingly endless merry-go-round of food, family and friends that starts at Thanksgiving and ends somewhere around the Super Bowl. Cars.com’s Jennifer provides tips to make sure your holiday dishes –and your family -- arrive in one piece in this week’s segment of Driving Smart.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

38 Models Win Highest IIHS Award - IIHS News


Headlights put ‘plus’ in TOP SAFETY PICK as 38 models win highest IIHS award

ARLINGTON, Va. — Consumers who choose a 2017 TOP SAFETY PICK+ award winner shouldn’t have trouble seeing the road on nighttime drives. Good or acceptable ratings in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s new headlight evaluations set the latest crop of qualifiers apart. Thirty-­eight models earn the “plus” accolade, and 44 earn TOP SAFETY PICK.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Mass Air Flow (MAF) Sensor - NAPA Service Assistant


A contaminated MAF sensor can cause false readings which can affect driveability in multiple different ways...

Thursday, December 8, 2016

What's the Best Three-Row SUV for 2016?


We spent a week outside Baltimore with "MotorWeek" to determine the best three-row SUV for 2016. We put eight competitors to the test, including the 2017 Dodge Durango, 2017 Ford Explorer, 2017 GMC Acadia, 2016 Honda Pilot, 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe, 2017 Kia Sorento, 2016 Mazda CX-9 and 2017 Nissan Pathfinder. Watch the video to find out how they did.

Monday, December 5, 2016

NAPA Service Assistant - NAPA Serpentine Belt


Your vehicle won't run with a broken serpentine belt. Additionally, belt wear can't always be seen but it can be measured by a trained technician.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Debunking Common Car Myths


There’s no shortage of automotive myths out there that steer us in the wrong direction. Cars.com’s Matt Schmitz debunks some of the most common ones in this week’s segment of Driving Smart.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

NAPA Service Assistant - Spark Plugs


Spark plugs provide the spark needed to burn gas in your engine. Both these and their wires wear out over time. Make sure that your service adviser helps you choose the appropriate spark plug for your vehicle based on your engine's needs and design.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

The Importance of Automotive Filter Changes


Humans require clean, easy-to-breath air in order to live. And just like humans, vehicles also need to be able to "breathe" clean air in order to survive. While human lungs make it possible to breathe, a vehicle's air filters do just the same. But after some time, they begin to accumulate mass amounts of dirt, debris, and other airborne particles, which eventually decreases their quality and function. For this reason, it is critical to have your vehicle's engine and cabin air filters inspected and changed on a routine basis to promote safe and efficient driving. Continue reading to learn more about the importance of routine automotive filter changes.

Air Filters

Keep in mind that your car's air filters are your first line of defense against irritating and obstructive airborne contaminants. Dirt, dust, pollen, mold spores, exhaust gases, bacteria, and more are examples of airborne contaminants that have the ability to negatively affect the quality and performance of your engine and vehicle as a whole. And according to Community Car Care, there is a 1 in 5 chance that YOUR car needs an air filter change right now! Many drivers are guilty of overlooking this small but highly-necessary scheduled maintenance.

Engine Damage

The long list of airborne contaminants can have a powerful impact on your vehicle's engine, and in a very negative way. Everything from pistons, cylinders, and cylinder walls, to piston rings and bearings, are just a few areas of a car engine that can begin to lose performance value from clogged or dirty air filters. Over time, neglecting to change them can lead to serious engine malfunctions and breakdowns, which means frustrating, costly repairs.

Cabin Filters

If you like to have clean, breathable interior air that smells good, you need to change your air filters on a routine basis. Once they start to become clogged, they begin to slowly lose their ability to do their job. So once they are entirely clogged, you can suffer some mild but irritating consequences, such as musty smells, sore throat, coughing, itchy eyes, tightening of the chest, and more. Changing them regularly keeps the interior environment of your car fresh and easy to breath.

Schedule

Refer to your vehicle's owners' manual for the manufacturer recommendations on factory scheduled maintenance. The general rule of thumb is to have your air filters inspected and changed every time you take your car in for an oil change. In fact, it is often a part of oil change packages. This should be every 3,000 miles or so. Talk to your mechanic for professional advice.

Call Spitzer Automotive at 317-253-3331 for European auto repair in Indianapolis, Indiana. They are ASE licensed and certified car mechanics that specialize in European and British automotive services. They have decades of experience and charge the most competitive rates. Call 317-253-3331 to request a free estimate for Indianapolis car repair, today.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Sarahbeth_Kluzinski/1326228

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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Disc Brakes - NAPA Service Advisor


If your brakes are squealing or grinding - watch this and visit your local NAPA AutoCare Service Center

Sunday, November 20, 2016

How Do I Remove a Sticker From My Car?


Whether they're on your car's bumper or a window, stickers enable you to express yourself to a large audience, but the problem is that trends and tastes change, and political campaigns end. Cars.com’s Joe Wiesenfelder show how to clean the slate in this week’s segment of Driving Smart.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Most Boosters Earn Top Rating, Bad Designs Still Slip Through - IIHS News


Most boosters earn top IIHS rating, but bad designs still slip through

ARLINGTON, Va. — The latest booster seat ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety show that child seat manufacturers have mastered something that once eluded them: building a seat that provides good safety belt fit for the typical 4- to 8-year-old passenger.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

2017 Five Least Reliable New Cars | Consumer Reports


Buying a new car should bring freedom from repairs. Consumer Reports tells you which new cars fall short when it comes to reliability.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Important Steps For Selecting An Auto Repair Shop


When a car breaks down, most customers just want to get back on the road soon without paying an extreme price. However, a little research and patience can go a long way in finding an auto repair shop. In fact, doing the due diligence now means that the next trip to the mechanic won't be anytime soon.

Find the Best Local Options

There are a few advantages to finding an auto shop in the neighborhood. First, you can ask neighbors and friends for their personal recommendations and experiences. Local shops will value customer loyalty and trustworthiness because they depend on word of mouth to create new customers. Secondly, the car can be dropped off and picked up easily, hopefully avoiding the process of arranging rides to and from the store. Lastly, a strong connection to a neighborhood shop can result in fair pricing to keep the customer coming back.

Check Customer Reviews

Even if the auto repair services aren't close by, or there are no referrals from friends and family, there are a variety of internet reviews sites worth checking. A lack of reviews online may suggest inexperience. Of course, most stores will have a range of good and bad reviews, but the overall trends about price, customer service, and quality work are worth reading about.

Compare More Than Prices

Shop around and don't always go with the cheapest option. Some auto repair shops will use a customer's impatience against them and raise the price when they sense a lack of negotiating skill. Remember that they need the customer and not vice versa. It is hard to wait when your primary mode of transportation needs fixing, but patience can pay off both now and in the future if it results in a good business relationship.

Prepare a List of Questions

In a similar vein, don't be afraid to ask questions. General questions about their experience, certifications, warranties, and work timeline let a mechanic know that you take this exchange seriously. Of course, getting an estimate on the price is the best way to ensure you're not getting ripped off, and it helps to do some amount of previous research to understand what a fair price might be. Shopping around and comparing prices can assure the best possible deals.

Get to Know the Mechanic

Establish a good working relationship with the shop to get peace of mind for future auto repairs. Rarely will this be the last visit to a mechanic. Fair pricing, communication, and a serious disposition will result in a good deal for all parties. Furthermore, if you leave a good review online or promise to come back, the relationship will find solid footing.

No matter how the search plays out, remember to trust your instincts and do what feels comfortable. No one wants to deal with a tense or strained business deal. Be patient, have confidence, and rely on those who have been through it before.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Ace_Abbey/851844

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Saturday, November 5, 2016

2017 Consumer Reports New Car Reliability Results | Consumer Reports


Find out what brands build the most reliable new cars, which ones are most likely to need repair, and what tends to go wrong.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Most Pickup Truck Headlights Rate Poor - IIHS news


Most pickup trucks have poor headlights, IIHS tests show

ARLINGTON, Va. — Drivers of late-model pickup trucks are likely to find themselves squinting into the darkness or temporarily blinding other drivers, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's latest headlight ratings show.

All four small pickups evaluated are available only with headlights that earn a poor rating. The same goes for 3 out of 7 large pickups. Only one large pickup, the Honda Ridgeline, is available with good-rated headlights, though all but the most expensive trim levels come with poor ones.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Steering - NAPA Service Assistant


Did you know that the power steering pump is what provides the "boost" to help you steer your vehicle easier. Learn more in this video!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Three Signs That Indicate You May Need Auto Repair


Do you know if your car is healthy? You should be aware of a few signs that indicate that you need auto repair. Knowing when to take your vehicle in for maintenance can save you a lot of time and money down the road. Simple problems that are ignored for long enough can turn into major headaches and bills, so look for the signs that indicate problems. We'll explore some common signs that you should be aware of below.

1. Problems While Driving Your Vehicle

There are many possible issues that may occur while you are operating your car. If you notice that your vehicle is jerky or difficult to steer while you are accelerating, you most likely have an issue with your engine. The longer you drive like this, the more strain you will put on your engine, and in the long run, the more expensive your auto repair costs may be. The engine is one of the most expensive parts of any car, so don't delay in getting it checked out by a professional as soon as you suspect something is wrong.

Does your vehicle vibrate when you hit the brakes? Generally, this is an indication that you need to change your brake pads, but it could also signify that you are having issues with your calipers. Brake issues generally are not too expensive, but they are vital to your safety, so don't wait for them to become a serious safety hazard before you get them fixed.

If your car struggles to stay straight while you are driving, you have an issue with your steering system or alignment. All machines pull a little, but if you struggle to keep your ride straight, you have a serious issue. It is dangerous to drive around like this. Don't endanger yourself and other commuters; bring your ride in for maintenance.

2. Strange Noises Coming from the Engine

Do you hear weird noises coming from your vehicle when you turn it on? You should know which noises are normal and which aren't for your machine. Strange sounds often indicate engine trouble, but they could also be due to issues with the exhaust or engine belts. Before you bring your vehicle in for auto repair, try your best to pinpoint the exact location of the sound. This will help your mechanic get to the root of the problem quicker.

3. Trouble Starting Your Car

If you can't even turn your machine on, you obviously have an issue. Before you seek auto repair, you should make sure that a simple jump doesn't fix your problem. Dead batteries are the most common causes of this situation. If a jump does not solve your problem, you may have alternator issues. This will require the skill of a good mechanic, so get your vehicle repaired as soon as possible.

Dealing with your troubles early will often bode well for you. If you notice any of the above signs or notice anything else out of the ordinary, take your vehicle in as soon as possible. The longer you delay, the larger your problems may become.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Ace_Abbey/851844

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Monday, October 24, 2016

Cooling System - NAPA Service Assistant


Be sure to have a cooling system inspection at your local NAPA AutoCare Center to avoid potential engine damage.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Tips for Making Used Cars Feel New Again


Purchasing used cars is a great way to save money, but some may feel as if they are not as nice looking as brand new vehicles. Many pre-owned vehicles are in excellent condition both cosmetically and mechanically. Proper maintenance of both the inside and outside can add more life to the car and keep it looking great. For those who feel as if their used cars are in need of a little sprucing up, consider some of these tips.

Clean the Interior

Keeping the interior of the vehicle clean is one of the best ways to spruce up used cars. Pull everything out from the inside and the trunk, and vacuum the carpeting and seats thoroughly. Don't forget to catch the corners, crevices, and anywhere else that dirt can collect. Remove the cup holders and wipe down the hard surfaces. Use an antibacterial cleaner to disinfect the steering wheel, handles, and all buttons, including the radio. Take some time to remove any stains on the upholstery using some upholstery cleaner.

Clean the Engine

A clean engine makes cars run more efficiently and look much nicer. Every month, wipe off any build-up with a shop towel. Spray a degreasing agent on the cloth and carefully wipe the outside of the engine. It is also possible to power wash the engine, but be careful not to get water into other elements under the hood.

Clean the Door Wells

Door wells are not an area that often comes to mind when sprucing up a vehicle. It is, however, the first part that people see when opening the door. This area can get very messy and unattractive. Grime and dirt can build up quickly, so take some time to clean it out. Spray the door wells with all purpose cleaner. Allow it to sit for a few minutes, and then wipe them down with a dry cloth.

Clean the Headlights

Over time, the headlight covers can become very foggy, making used cars look less attractive. A yellow film builds up on the headlights and prevents the lights from working as well. There are a few options to fix this problem. Professionals can refinish the lights using a specialized technique and professional products. Replacing them is also an option if they are in especially bad condition. There are also headlight cleaning kits available for the owner to clean them.

Taking a few moments each month to spruce up used cars can make it seem as good as new. In addition to general maintenance, these tips will make it look and feel like new for years to come.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Ace_Abbey/851844

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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Power Brakes - NAPA Service Assistant


Notice a decrease in stopping power or braking efficiency with your vehicle? Chances are you have a leak in your Power Brake line. Learn more about it here.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Top 4 Car Repair Problems And How To Recognize The Symptoms


1. The Check Engine Light

It can be a little disturbing when you're driving and the check engine light keeps coming on and going off. It's supposed to give you an indication that something's wrong, but more often than not it's an indication of faulty wiring and no car repair is necessary. The only trouble with that is, if there is a serious problem, you'll ignore the light when it comes on. In general, if it seems to have a mind of its own, it's probably bad wiring. If it comes on and you notice something else wrong with the car, then it's time to get it looked at. In either case, get it looked at next time you've got your car at the mechanic's.

2. Leaky Water Pump

If your vehicle is leaking some kind of fluid, it can be pretty scary. The most common leak you find in cars is the water pump. Water pumps just can't take the strain we put on our cars these days. One way to tell if it's the water pump is to put paper under the car overnight, and check in the morning. If the leaky stuff is green, this means that it's coolant that's leaking from your water pump. Water pumps have to be replaced occasionally, usually around every 100,000 miles, so expect to get yours replaced at some point.

3. Your Engine Won't Start

You crank it and just get a little clicking sound - This means you've got something wrong with your fuel or ignition. Unfortunately, there could be lots of different reasons why your vehicle won't start, including low batter, clogged fuel filter, defective fuel pump or an ignition switch that doesn't work. This is when you'll need somebody who knows about car repair to have a look and make an assessment. None of these things means the death of your vehicle; they're all problems that can be pretty easily fixed.

4. White Smoke And Overheating

Overheating is a common problem for many types of vehicles. The most common cause is low coolant level; make sure you've got enough coolant in there. You might also have trouble with a dirty air filter or a broken fan which isn't keeping everything cooled down like it's supposed to. The problem may even be a broken thermostat which doesn't tell you you're in danger until it's already blown its top. Check the coolant first, and if that's not a problem, see if the coolant might be leaking. This is another issue that can be solved with some simple car repair.

Look out for these problems and call the car repair specialists if you need to. Remember that all of these are minor problems so don't panic. Get them taken care of as soon as possible.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Andrew_Stratton/83489

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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Wiper Blades - NAPA Service Assistant


Don't wait until your Wiper Blades fail. As a security function it's vital to change your blades at least twice per year.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

What's the Best Midsize SUV for 2016?


Midsize SUVs are a hot class and Cars.com put five of the most popular players in the segment though a week of testing. We evaluated acceleration, ride and handling, fuel economy as well as interior comfort, cargo room and features. Which one rose to the top? Watch the video for more.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Seven Tips For Finding Excellent Car Service


The best car service is preventative, not patchwork. The last thing car owners need nowadays, with increasingly busy schedules, is frequent trips to the mechanic. It's especially frustrating with easily fixed or recurring problems. Here are some tips to avoid breaking the bank the next time your vehicle breaks down.

Check Out Reviews First

With the spread of customer reviews on the internet, it's quite easy for a consumer to find personal accounts of a business with a quick search. On occasion, reviews will be staged or not representative of the service, but a perusal of a range of reviews may give you a reasonable expectation of what to expect. An old fashioned review from a trusted friend - especially a car lover - never hurts, either. You can't put a price on experience.

Shop Around

Most mechanics will offer free estimates. It helps to get the estimate for your car service on paper as proof. This document can also be used as leverage with other mechanics. Sometimes the cheapness of the price can suggest poor workmanship, but you certainly don't want to be swindled.

Ask To See A Certification

ASE is the most common certification, and a trustworthy business should have no issue presenting you with such certification. This will establish a baseline of experience and knowledge. A shop that possesses an American Automotive Association rating is a good sign too, as it guarantees that they have been pre-screened by an objective source.

Don't Be Afraid to Ask Questions, Even If You're a Novice

Beyond a price estimation, it is very helpful to ask questions that you may consider basic. Such as, which parts will need to be replaced? How long will the work in question take to complete? Can I see the problem area of the car? Even more intensive questions about the process of fixing the vehicle should not fluster a reliable mechanic. These questions will make you feel comfortable with the car service and prove to the mechanic that you take your car's care serious.

Go With Your Instinct

This tip is harder to pin down, and will mean different things to different people, but it remains relevant. Simple things, such as the cleanliness of the shop, may be symbolic of the overall service. Furthermore, if a mechanic is giving vague answers or treating customers in a hostile manner, it's probably a clear sign to get out while you can. Getting a car fixed is rarely a pleasant experience, so there's no need to add extra stress to the process.

Find a Location Near Your Home

This is especially important if you don't have a friend or family member to follow you to the mechanic and drive you home. Finding a route home or to work via public transportation may be pivotal, depending on how long the car will be out of commission.

Warranties and Specialists

This tip will mainly pertain to people whose cars need to be fixed at a dealership. It also applies to those who own a car that has to have specialty parts replaced. Do research and determine whether a mechanic has expertise in your particular make and model. Additionally, an honorable mechanic will supply warranties on new parts. Make sure to establish this warranty before they get to work on your car.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Ace_Abbey/851844

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Monday, October 3, 2016

A Few Key Signs Your Car Needs Auto Service


Intellectually, everyone understands that their car needs auto service regularly. However, with all of the distractions of your daily life, it can be difficult to keep up with the maintenance your automobile deserves. Here are a few key things to keep an eye on to remind you it may be time for maintenance.

Squeaky Brakes

Every now and then, take a moment to turn off your radio and listen to your brakes when your car first starts moving. Squeaky brakes are usually an indication that your brake pads are wearing out, but the sound can also mean that your tires are wearing out. Many car service companies will offer free brake inspections, allowing you to get an idea of your exact brake situation. If you ask, they can usually even give you an idea of how long you have before you'll start causing harm to the vehicle.

Trouble Starting

If your can has started needing a bit of coaxing before it will turn over, there is a chance that something serious, like the starter or alternator, needs to be replaced. However, it can also be as simple as needing a new battery. An auto service shop can read the existing power in your battery and determine if it needs to be replaced.

Dust Buildup

Have you ever noticed that suddenly your car seems to be retaining a layer of dust on the dashboard? You clean it, have the car vacuumed, and the dust just keeps coming back. Just like your home air conditioner, your car has a built-in filter to absorb dust as it moves through the air conditioning system. Your filters at home need to be changed every few months, so it should be no surprise that your car's filter needs to be replaced regularly. A normal inspection service can typically give you an idea of the state of your filter and when it will need to be replaced.

While it may not seem like a big deal, a dirty filter can cause unforeseen complications. When it's full, the air conditioning system has to work harder to send cool air into the car. This can cause problems not only with the AC, but also with any other part of the vehicle that is involved in the conditioning process.

Ultimately, preventative maintenance is a key part of maximizing your car's lifespan. By regularly taking your vehicle in for auto service, you are accomplishing multiple things. First, you are able to fix small problems as they occur, preventing them from becoming larger issues. This allows you to spend 100 dollars today as opposed to thousands of dollars down the road. Secondly, regular auto service allows you to budget and plan for necessary repairs. A free brake inspection will tell you not only how much your eventual brake pad replacement will cost, but also how long you have until that repair becomes a necessity. You can budget for regular maintenance and then budget each month so that your major repairs will never be a sudden, stressful surprise.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Anders_Abadie/1022510

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Friday, September 30, 2016

Disc Brakes - NAPA Service Advisor


If your brakes are squealing or grinding - watch this and visit your local NAPA AutoCare Service Center

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

What Our Customers Our Saying



"These guys are great! Customer service is tops. When I left my car for service they drove me back to work, AND they picked me up when my car was ready.

Even more important is they know what they're doing, and they're honest.

My car had been making a quiet tapping noise that would come and go. It had been doing this for years. I was told by a Nissan dealership that my car needed work on the axle bearings, which would cost $600 plus. When the noise suddenly became loud and grinding I took my car to Alex's. They took a look under the car and quickly discovered the problem. The toggles holding up the parking brake cables were gone, and the cables were hitting against the drive shaft. Marks on the drive shaft showed this had been going on for a long time. The repair cost less than $100!

I found Alex's on Yelp and went there because of the 5 star reviews. Well deserved. So I'm adding another five star review. I will never take my car anywhere else"

Peg J.

“I had my car brought in after I was surprised with a check engine light. They were kind and courteous.

The good stuff is all true. Been in Benicia and going here for 20 years. Since the "Alex" retired there has been no drop off in service or integrity. They are very honest. I brought in a broke down beater. The fix would have been $800. They suggested it was not worth it. Rather than charge for the diagnostic and toss me the keys, they offered to facilitate car donation to KQED! They took care of everything. I saved $200 in taxes"

Mikey M.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Exhaust System - NAPA Service Assistant


The Exhaust System has three main functions. 1) moves exhaust gas away from the engine. 2) Treats the exhaust to remove harmful pollutants. 3) Muffles Engine noise.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Is Your Car Making a Funny Noise?


Cars are a lot like people - they usually let you know when something isn't quite right with them. Whether it's clicking, squealing or grinding, turning up the radio to drown it out can prove expensive and dangerous.

Get familiar with the common causes for the sounds you might hear, and learn what you should do about them.

The Braking Banshee

If your car makes a squealing or screeching sound when you brake, your system requires attention. You may need:
  • Brake pad replacement
  • Brake line leak repair
  • Rotor resurfacing
  • Full brake system replacement
If your car makes otherworldly sounds when you hit the brakes, it's typically a sign that the pads aren't releasing correctly. This generates excessive heat, which results in excessive noise.

This problem won't correct itself. In fact, it will only get worse. Make haste to your auto mechanic to have the system inspected ASAP.

Note that some vehicles have built-in brake wear indicators that squeal or chirp to let you know when the brake pads need to be replaced.

The Daily Grind

Grinding noises can signal a few different problems, usually related to the brake system, a wheel or axle bearing, a problem in the clutch assembly or a failing starter.

If you hear a grinding sound when braking, that could be an indication that you need new brake pads, calipers or rotors.

A grinding sound when making a turn, especially along with a loud clicking sound, may indicate a problem in a bearing or the CV (constant velocity) joint or boot.

Grinding sounds that occur while you're starting the car are typically related to the starter. Growling or grinding that starts when you press the clutch often indicates a failing part in the transmission or clutch assembly.

Sputtering and Coughing and Rumbling! Oh My!

If your car sounds like you've trapped an angry badger under the hood, then you might have a problem in the exhaust system.

When your car simply sounds louder than before and the extra decibels seem to come from under the car, you may have a hole or bad gasket in your exhaust system somewhere.

If you hear what sounds like a box of rocks rumbling around underneath your car, then that could mean a problem with the catalytic converter, the universal joint (u-joint) or the axle.

Is That a Bird Under the Hood?

If you hear a chirping or squealing noise under the hood, then it may just be a problem with one of your car's belts - usually a fan or drive belt.

The drive belt is also called the serpentine belt, and your car needs it to run the air conditioning, power steering and alternator. It's not uncommon for the belt to stretch and wear out over time. Typically this causes an unpleasant squealing sound for a period of time, prior to breaking.

If a belt breaks while you're driving, it can cause extensive damage in the engine compartment. If you hear belt noises, get to the auto shop for evaluation.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Jen_Stott/2109812

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Sunday, September 18, 2016

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Fuel Pump - NAPA Service Assistant


Learn more about the importance of keeping your vehicle's fuel pump in good condition and getting it regularly checked by your NAPA Auto Care Technician.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Understanding the Eight Different Types of Brakes



Brakes are one of the most important components of a vehicle. If they are faulty, it becomes almost impossible to control the car. In fact, their failure is one of the leading causes of road accidents. Here is a breakdown of the eight most common systems used by car manufacturing companies.

Disc Systems

Disc brakes have a friction mechanism designed to reduce the speed at which the wheels rotate. They push the brake pads against the brake rotors using a set of calipers.

Single Circuit Hydraulics

A single circuit hydraulic system includes a master cylinder that holds hydraulic fluid. The cylinder is linked to a series of rubber fittings and metal pipes that are fixed on the wheel cylinders. To bring the car to a halt, pressure is generated in the cylinder to push the pistons apart and force the brake pads into the wheel cylinder.

Drum Mechanism

The drum mechanism relies on friction force. This system has a set of pads that press against the drum when the driver steps on the brake pedal.

Anti-lock System (ABS)

The anti-lock system is comprised of a hydraulic actuator, electrical control unit, and wheel speed sensors. Each wheel is controlled separately to maintain traction. The primary function of the sensors is to detect and prevent potential lockups.

Power Booster Mechanism

A power booster mechanism uses the vacuum power produced by the car's engine to amplify the driver's foot pressure when stopping the vehicle.

Air Mechanism

Air systems activate the standard disc using natural air instead of hydraulic fluid. It is widely employed in trailers, trucks, and buses.

Advanced Emergency Mechanism (AEBS)

The advanced emergency system is an autonomous safety mechanism that uses sensors to monitor a vehicle's proximity to others in the vicinity. If the sensor detects cars ahead, it automatically stops the car to avoid a collision.

Dual Circuit Hydraulic System

The dual circuit hydraulic system is made up of two command circuits. The first one is activated whenever the driver steps on the pedal. The second one is connected to the vehicle's computer; it calculates the amount of force applied and relays that information to the hydraulic pump.

Here are two tips for maintaining the efficiency and durability of the braking system.

1. Change Fluid Regularly

Over time, the system's fluid naturally attracts water, which leads to internal corrosion that compromises the rubber seals and other components. Flushing the system's fluid regularly helps to enhance the durability and efficiency of the internal components.

2. Master the Art of Coasting

Coasting is a way of reducing speed without causing wear. If a driver wants to stop at the end of a freeway off-ramp, coasting from 70mph to 50mph before stepping on the pedal will reduce wear and enhance the system's efficiency.

Finally, a professional auto facility can run diagnostic tests on the brakes to identify flaws and address them before disaster strikes. During this inspection, request that the mechanic checks the thickness of the disc pads to know if they should be replaced with new ones.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Ace_Abbey/851844

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Friday, September 9, 2016

Kid-Safe Vehicle Inspection for Back-To-School Car Pools


Now that back-to-school season is here, parents and guardians are focusing on getting their kids to class safely and on-time. For those involved in neighborhood car pools, it means making sure your vehicles are in top-notch condition so they are capable of providing safe and reliable travel for passengers.
A simple vehicle inspection is a great way to ensure your vehicle is ready for back-to-school season. Locating, correcting, and preventing vehicular problems will make car-pooling safe and efficient for everyone! Continue reading to review a recommended checklist to use for a car pool vehicle safety inspection.
Automotive Safety Inspection Checklist:
1. Prepare for Inclement Weather
It is important to make sure your vehicle is ready to take on rain, hail, snow, fog, and ice. So start by inspecting your interior and exterior lights. In the case of heavy fog or rain (or late night after-school pickups), dim lights are serious safety hazards, so bulbs should be replaced with newer, brighter ones.
Next, check your windshield wiper blades and level of wiper fluid. Be sure to check both front and back windshield wipers for wear and tear. Replace them if needed. Fill up your wiper fluid and keep an extra bottle in the trunk for emergencies.
Last, check your tires for proper tread and tire pressure. Low tread on tires is a safety concern because it reduces traction on slippery surfaces. Use the penny test to check tire tread. Insert a penny in the groove of your tire. If you can see Lincoln's head, it means your tread is low. Check tire pressure with a tire pressure gauge. They are inexpensive and easy to find. Match the reading with the recommended tire pressure in your owners' manual. Be sure to have your tires replaced if the tread is gone, or inflated if they are low on pressure.
2. Check Seatbelts and Car Seats
Be sure to give a good inspection to all of the seatbelts and buckles in your vehicle. Check for belt frays, broken buckles, jammed receptacles, missing or broken hinges and latches, and receptacles stuffed inside seats. Next, check your car seats and boosters for damage or missing components. Be sure they are fully locked into place.
3. Professional Brake Service
Your car brakes are a major safety component in your vehicle. They should be inspected and serviced by a licensed mechanic at least once per year. They retain the proper tools, training, and knowledge to provide a comprehensive inspection of your vehicle and determine if it's safe to drive, as well as, locate small issues early on and prevent them from becoming large, costly repairs or safety hazards later on. You will feel confident transporting precious cargo to and from school when you know your vehicle has been professionally inspected and serviced.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9509446

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Installing Child Restraints is Getting Easier - IIHS News


Ratings for child seat installation hardware improve after 1 year

ARLINGTON, Va. — Buckling precious cargo into a late-model vehicle has gotten a bit easier in the past year, the Institute’s LATCH ease-of-use ratings show.

IIHS launched its ratings of child seat installation hardware in vehicles in June 2015. Out of 102 vehicles rated at that time, the majority were poor or marginal. Today, a total of 170 current models have been evaluated, and most are good or acceptable. Three models — the Audi Q7, Lexus RX and Toyota Prius — earn the top rating of good+, a distinction that no vehicle achieved last year.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Brake Fluid: Knowing The Crucial Basics



With a basic hydraulic system, brakes are designed to use kinetic energy to slow down a moving vehicle. Whether driving at slow speeds or high, by pushing down on your brake pedals your car will use a fluid to transmit a force which your tires will then use to create a friction that will ultimately slow things down.
Understanding the full extent of the technology behind brakes requires a great deal of knowledge but what even the most novice driver will know is that without your brakes your car won't function but how many are aware of what they can do to ensure their brakes remain in prime working condition?
The condition of your brake pads is essential and as a driver, it is crucial to ensure that you maintain and regular monitor this not only to ensure the smooth operation of your vehicle but to improve your safety on the roads. One of the crucial ways of doing this is by knowing just what your brake fluid is, what it does and how you as a driver can use it to determine just how well your brakes are operating.
Whether you're new to it all, not sure of whether you know enough or just curious; below are the brake fluid basics that every driver needs to know...
  • Brake fluid has many responsibilities but its primary focus is the corrosion protection and lubrication of brake systems.
  • Without the fluid, your hydraulic brake system will not be able to operate.
  • Brake fluid is held in a fluid reservoir.
  • Adding fluid is generally not part of a standard vehicle service.
  • Low fluid levels or a sudden drop can be an indicator of several issues including low brake pads that may need to be changed.
  • On a few occasions air may enter the brake line. Bleeding the brakes can improve this condition however if your reservoir is struggling to contain the liquid then you may need to get it checked by your mechanic. This may not work with newer vehicles so check your manual before doing anything.
  • Brake fluid must never be substituted with any other fluid.
  • Become familiar with the brake reservoir so that you can easily check your fluid. There will be a "full" mark which will give you an idea of what level your fluid is at and what it should be at.
  • If your fluid level falls below the "add" line then you may need to have your discs checked.
  • As the car owner you should have no issue in topping up your fluid however if you have any other issues or any general concerns over your brakes then you should see a professional.
Getting from a to b is important but doing so safely should be on top of your list! By knowing as much as possible about your brakes, how they function, what role the right fluid plays and any issues that can occur you have a great chance of ensuring your car remains in the best condition and you as the driver are as safe as possible.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/8677712

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Top Signs Your Car Needs Auto Repair!


Like going to a doctor when you get sick, auto repair is occasionally necessary to keep your car healthy and functional. Sometimes, a car's problems are difficult to detect, and can only be treated once the damage is done. Many other times, however, auto repair costs can be minimized by early detection of key indicators that may signify car trouble. While these examples are by no means complete, they do present a good start!
Does your engine whine or rumble when pumping the breaks at a stop sign? If so, this may be an early indication of brake pads beginning to wear down. While not initially a serious problem, this should be taken to an automotive repair shop sooner than later. Replacing brake pads is a relatively simple and inexpensive task. Wait too long, however, and it could result in lengthier, not to mention costlier, fixes! Just knowing you can come to a full and complete stop whenever necessary will probably make those morning commutes a little less stressful.
Sometimes while driving, people may notice the faint (or, unfortunately, strong) scent of burning oil. This is almost undoubtedly due to a leak somewhere under your vehicle, which is causing motor oil to sizzle against the hotter parts in the system. Most people don't wish to smell like hot petroleum every time they arrive at their destination, but they also probably don't want to pay for continual oil refills. Like brake pads, this is an easy problem to ignore, but the benefits of early auto repair are far more economical, safe, and altogether less smelly in the long run.
So, you're able to stop whenever you want to, and your car no longer trails smoke. But now, your ride feels springier, and it's beginning to give you a bit of a headache. Sounds like your shocks are wearing down. Kids bouncing around in the backseat may think the drive is a lot more fun, but your chassis is suffering for it. Shock systems often deteriorate after regular exposure to rough roads, or just general overuse. So, replacing them when necessary will smooth out those trips a whole lot more.
While these tips are for just a few of the more easily detectable and fixable problems, just being on the lookout for these indicators will save you stress and money. In general, if something feels off, it just might be! Regular auto repair shop visits will help keep you and your loved ones (including your car!) safe and sound as you drive through life.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/8695647

Monday, August 22, 2016

2016 Midsize Pickup Challenge: Off Road


Our 2016 Midsize Pickup Challenge panel of judges had the chance to flog each of the 4x4 competitors at a private off road park just outside Ann Arbor, MI. We played in the sand, on hill climbs, over rocky trails, even playing in the mud. What we discovered surprised us.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

How To Choose A Trustworthy Car Mechanic?



How many of you have to face trouble in bringing your car to a mechanic shop for repair and then have a difficult time dealing with car mechanic? Some mechanics are quite difficult to handle, whereas others are easy to work with. So, how would you choose the right one and how to trust him/her with your car?
  • Think Before Choosing
The most vital issue to recollect is that you just ought to never choose a car mechanic on an impulse. Those who choose their mechanic without thinking typically land up regretting the choice, as they get charged with extremely high costs and have to get services which is not close to skilled.
That is why it is vital to search for an expert as soon as you get a new car, even if your vehicle does not need any repairs at that point of time. By doing this, if your car would ever need any repair works, you may apprehend specifically wherever you are going to take your car, so you do not need to choose a car mechanic on an impulse and end up regretting the decision.
  • Cleanliness At The Mechanic Shop
Most people assume that every mechanic shop is dirty, filthy, unorganized place, however this might not be true. Though, most garages might appear to possess a thin layer of dirt or grease on everything, but that is a bit expected.
However, there is no excuse for a mechanic to have an unorganized garage. They must be aware where all of their tools are so they can get them instantly, also the elements that they need. They ought to even have a clean place for people who are expecting their vehicle to get repaired in a short period of time. If the car mechanic's garage is filthy, unorganized, and uses old tools, you'll need to consider visiting some other more professional garage.
  • How They Work With You
One thing the general public forgets while selecting a car mechanic is that they work in the industry. This implies that they have to produce a high quality service for you, their client. Once you are looking at which car mechanic you are going to pick to be your mechanic, take specific note on how the mechanic, and any workers in that garage, behaves with you. Is the car mechanic polite to you? Do they answer all the queries you made about your car? A good car mechanic should be well aware of how to deal with his/her clients.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9483989

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Oil Change - NAPA Service Assistant


Oil sludge is a major cause of engine damage. Did you know the way you drive and where you drive affects the frequency of oil changes as well. Learn more about it here!

Saturday, August 13, 2016

How to Remove Gum | Driver How-To


Sticky gum can be a nightmare for the carpet mats in your car. Get rid of the gum with this quick tip.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

2016 - 2017 Compact Sedan Comparison - Kelley Blue Book


For this year's compact car comparison test, we combined local Southern California freeway driving with twisty two-lane highways through San Diego’s North County.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

How to Clean Your Car Interior | Driver How-To



If you’ve ever gotten frustrated scraping your hands as you try to clean between the seats in your car, this is for you. Quickly and easily adjust your vacuuming plan to be able to clean those hard to reach places.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Top Tips For Hiring The Best Car Mechanic


We all have been at least once in a situation where we have had vehicle trouble and required somebody to repair our car. Most folks have at one point of time been in such situations, and it's often extraordinarily frustrating to get your car fixed however with no knowledge on who to call to get it fixed!

That is why it is important once you get an automotive vehicle to seek out a car mechanic in your neighbourhood that you could simply trust. Selecting a car mechanic before you truly want one may be a good way to assist you from making an emergency call that may cause wastage of more time and money.

  • Ask For Recommendations
Most of the experts agree with this tip - ask for recommendations while you are in the process of selecting a car mechanic. Remember that car mechanics perform in the service industry, and they are not solely there to repair your car, but to provide an overall service, which implies that you simply ought to confirm that the mechanic not solely is aware of the ways to repair cars, but also knows the way to treat his customers.

Of course, the best way to understand this as expected is to ask for recommendations before you visit a car mechanic garage. Your friends and family members, or maybe co-workers can help you find the mechanics with whom they have worked with before, and you may possibly notice that they good advice to give on what mechanic you ought to use and which of them you ought to avoid.

  • Visit Their Mechanic Shop
Do you think that every mechanic shop is same? Of course not! Most of us think that garages are filled with filth and are extraordinarily unorganized, which isn't true. While you are attempting to pick a car mechanic garage, confirm that you simply take the time to visit their mechanic shop. If the mechanic shop is totally filthy and is actually unorganized, then you will wish to go to some other mechanic shop.

No doubt, some amount of dirt and grease is anticipated in a mechanic shop, the garage ought to be organized in order that the car mechanic will notice everything that he wants, and there ought to even be a clean and comfy waiting place for you to take a seat and wait in case the car is going to take a bit more time to get repaired.

  • Cost Of Repair
One more factor which is important to see while you are selecting a car mechanic is their price for car repairs. While you're looking for a car mechanic don't consider cost as the deciding factor. In fact focus more on the skills and experience of the mechanic.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Clive_James/2270133

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Monday, August 1, 2016

How to Remove Fur | Driver How-To



Getting fur out of carpet is one of the trickiest parts of detailing a car. Next time you take your furry friend for a ride, grab a squeegee so there aren’t leftover bits of fur in the upholstery.

Friday, July 29, 2016

The Joys of a Fresh Oil Change


When most people think of joy, they usually think what you might expect them to: warm beaches, gatherings of friends, marital bliss, or for the adventurous, the rush that comes from parachuting from an airplane or reaching a mountain peak. All of that is fine and can really bring anybody a great deal of happiness. However, for us gear heads and motor vehicle enthusiasts, joy hides in places most people wouldn't really expect: the feeling of driving a stick shift, the slight drag you feel as your tires momentarily slip on an off road dirt patch, and the fresh feel of a car right after an oil change.

That's not to say that an oil change will make a car feel noticeably different to everybody; that's a joy reserved for the real aficionados. However, it's undeniable that there are a myriad of benefits to getting your oil changed regularly. So, for the people who are not as up to speed, here's a quick list of the ways this vital procedure will benefit your vehicle when performed regularly.

1. Performance

A fresh change of oil in your vehicle has a tremendous effect on your car's performance. A vehicle's engine consists of a wide variety of moving parts. Oil is the lubricant that keeps all of these parts from harshly grinding against one another, which over time causes the whole system to run more slowly. With a fresh coat, you'll see a great increase in horsepower and a much smoother, quieter operation.

2. Fuel Efficiency

Once again, when an engine's lubrication is not up to par, all of these moving parts start to grind against each other. This not only damages the component parts, but it also requires a great deal more energy to operate. When everything is running smoothly, the parts move with less resistance, and you'll find that you spend much less on gas than you were before.

3. Less Debris

In the course of the normal operation of an engine, a certain amount of dirt and debris begins to develop. All of that extra stuff ends up floating around in the oil, and if you allow it to sit for long enough without a change, you'll find a great deal of random particles that can cause damage. A fresh oil change flushes all of that stuff out.

4. Longer Life

Like everything in a motor vehicle, engines die after some time. This is going to happen eventually, no matter what you do for your car. Keeping everything fresh on a regular basis mitigates all of that damage, and though you won't completely eliminate wear and tear, you'll find that it will last far longer than it would otherwise.

So you see, regular oil changes are essential to the overall health of your car or truck. Check with your mechanic for recommendations on how frequently it should be done.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Ace_Abbey/851844

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

5 Signs You Need An Expert For Automobile Repair


Automobiles are turning into more advanced and complex since the last decade. With the arrival of electrical car technologies, with electronic fuel injection system and controlled systems, the automobiles have changed dramatically from what they used to be a few decades ago! The variety of cars which can get minor car repairs done by newbie mechanics is shrinking rapidly.
Let's take a look at some signs that it's time to take your automobile to an automobile repair store to avoid troubles and expensive repairs in the future.
  • The Automobile Is Less Than 10 Years Old
Automobiles that are newer than 10 years typically have really advanced systems. Even automobile repairs such as battery or a fuse changing, brakes replacement and common automobile service process can cause other parts of the system to operate if the right techniques are not followed.
  • The Repair You Are Planning Is Not In The New Car Handbook
If the car company is not advising you to try and do it yourself, it's most likely safest not to try any repairs. If you are doubtful, it will be a better decision to call an auto mechanic to have a look at the problem first. Auto mechanic will advise you on safety points to keep in mind, if it's seemingly that you will have to be compelled to create the fix again more in the future.
  • If There's A Need To Remove Something Out Of The Automobile
Safety may be a serious issue while the repair is going on, so you need to be extra careful while doing automobile repair. While removing some heavy part out of the automobile, you are risking other parts of the automobile and yourself. It's advised that you simply hire professional auto mechanic to perform this type of tasks.
  • The Automobile Repair Needs Equipment You Do Not Own In Your Garage
Contrary to common belief, not each automobile repair job will be finished by just using a shifter and sticky tape. If you do not have the right equipment to try and do the repairs yourself, the value in shopping for that tool/equipment usually outweighs the savings you were planning to make.
  • Your Automobile Comes With An Electronic Fuel Injection System
If your automobile has an electronic fuel injection system (and in several cases, this is often sealed in huge letters right the top, or at the side of the series name somewhere on the car body), it's not safe to perform the repair job by yourself. Even car repairs which are not associated with the timing may throw the PC out, and might cost you a lot more money to repair at the mechanic's than it might have cost originally.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9474289

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Five Signs That It's Time For A New Car Battery


Getting stranded in the middle of nowhere with a dead car battery is every motorist's worst nightmare. The ordeal gets even worse when the power cannot be restored with jumper cables. A truly dead battery will almost certainly require roadside assistance and possible even a towing service. When all is said and done, the breakdown could end up costing you hundreds of dollars, as well as several hours of your day. Here are five signs that you may need to take preventative action soon.

1. Engine Is Slow To Crank

When you try to start the engine and it's slow to turn over, the problem is almost certainly electrical. Although the culprit could very well be a poor connection in the starter or starting circuit, the issue often comes does to a charging system shortfall. There's also a chance something could be draining the power when the vehicle is parked. Either way, you should schedule an inspection with your mechanic ASAP.

2. Check Engine Light Appears

There are dozens of reasons why the dreaded check engine light might illuminate on your dashboard. One fairly common culprit, especially in older vehicles, is inadequate electrical power. When a low charge puts the vehicle in danger of breaking down, the engine light will come on. Once again, the charge should be tested by a qualified mechanic to ensure adequate electrical output.

3. Damaged Case

When a battery's casing looks bloated or swollen, it's often a sign it has been exposed to excessive heat. These high engine temps have been known to greatly reduce the life of the unit. As such, drivers should check the case from time to time to make sure it's in good shape.

4. Leaking or Low Fluid

When the unit leaks fluid, it can easily cause corrosion around the posts, which prevents the electrical system from making a strong connection. In other words, the gunk may prevent your vehicle from starting. It is also true that when the battery fluid falls below the lead plates that conduct electricity, the unit may not work. As such, the charge should always be tested when it looks like the fluid level has fallen too low.

5. Old Age

Contrary to popular belief, the average car battery won't last for the life of your vehicle. In most cases, modern units are tested at around three years. After that point, they should be inspected on an annual basis. We should also mention that your driving habits could shorten or extend the period between replacements.

Because the unit will not have enough time to fully recharge, short trips (less than 20 minutes) have been shown to decrease lifespan. And, as we mentioned, extreme temperatures can also reduce the longevity considerably. This is true of both extreme heat and extreme cold. Drivers should also avoid things that may drain their batteries (leaving the lights, fan, and radio on), since constant recharging can negatively affect longevity.

If you notice any of the aforementioned signs, have your car battery tested as soon as possible.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Andrew_Stratton/83489

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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The Importance of Yearly Car Air Conditioning Repair - Beat the Heat!


If you try to blast cool air in your automobile and all you get is uncool or even hot breezes, then there could be a technical malfunction. Before seeking out a car air conditioning repair service, it helps understand a bit about the inner workings of the cooling system.

The Components

The A/C system consists of four main components. First, the compressor does just what it sounds like; it compresses refrigerant gasses. Then an evaporator takes heat from the air and passes it through the refrigerant agent. Next, the heat boils off of and the water vapor, reducing the overall temperature and humidity levels in the vehicle. The condenser also plays a valuable role. Its prime function is to keep the refrigerant cool by converting the heat from the gasses in the compressor to highly pressurized liquid. The final component is called the orifice tube or expansion valve, depending on your vehicle. It converts the liquid refrigerant from the condenser into a lower pressure liquid for entry into the evaporator unit.

Potential Problems

The car air conditioner works through a complex interplay of the aforementioned components, and any number of things can wreak havoc with the system. There are several typical warning signs that indicate car air conditioning repair is needed. A weak airflow could be caused by broken hoses, worn down seals, mold or mildew, or a fried ventilation fan. On the other hand, cooling capabilities can be diminished by condenser or evaporator damage, a vacuum or chemical leak, or a blown fuse. If the A/C works for a short period of time and then produces warmth, there are four potential culprits: leaks, blown fuses, a faulty compressor clutch, or a clogged expansion valve. In some cases, there may be a bad odor coming from the vents. This is caused by either an old filter or mold in the evaporator case.

DIY Repairs vs. Professional Assistance

To save yourself time and possibly money, there are home kits for checking the basics, such as if there is an excess of coolant seeping out. These kits include a special dye that detects if coolant is leaking, and a gauge for properly testing pressure and the coolant flow. Most car A/C issues, however, are best left to the professionals. It is recommended that you schedule a car air conditioning repair once a year to keep the vehicle's A/C in working order. Most issues, after all, are easily dealt with, as long as you take regular maintenance precautions.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Andrew_Stratton/83489

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Sunday, July 17, 2016

Headlights for Most Small SUVs are Poor - IIHS News



Most small SUV headlights rate poor in IIHS evaluations

ARLINGTON, Va. — Not a single small SUV out of 21 tested earns a good rating in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s headlight evaluations, and only four are available with acceptable-rated headlights.

Among the 21 vehicles, there are 47 different headlight combinations available. More than two-thirds of them are rated poor, making this group of vehicles even more deficient when it comes to lighting than the midsize cars that were the first to be rated earlier this year.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

5 Benefits Of Changing Your Car's Air Filters


If you have a car, it's recommended that you change the air filter regularly. Here are some of the benefits of doing so:

You increase your car's performance

Dirty car filters reduce the amount of air that flows into the car's engine. When the amount of air in the engine is limited, the car doesn't spend the amount that it's supposed to and as a result, its performance goes down. Studies have consistently shown that cars with clean filters are by far more effective than those with dirty filters.

You protect your car from damage

Filters prevent foreign particles from getting access to the inside of the car's engine. Even when a small particle gets into the engine it can cause a lot of damage to the moving parts. The damage gets worse as more particles get into the engine. A clean car filter traps all the air debris ensuring that none gets into the engine. This protects your car from damage. Since the car and the engine aren't damaged, they last for a long time.

You increase the efficiency of the car

Studies by experts show that clean car filters increase the car's efficiency by up to 14%. The reason for this is because there is plenty of clean air in the engine thus the car doesn't strain burning fuel. Due to the efficiency, you spend less money than when the car is running on a dirty air filter.

You reduce car emissions

Dirty filters reduce air flow to the engine thus affecting emission control systems. Faulty emission control systems result to an incorrect air-fuel mixture. When the fuel mixture is too much, it can result in engine deposits resulting to a lot of emissions. In addition to the high emissions, it's also common for the car to consume more fuel than it should.

Changing the car filter

As you have seen, there are plenty of benefits that come with replacing your car filter. The cool thing with air filter replacement is that you can do it on your own. When replacing the filters, ensure that you replace them with identical ones designed for the exact match and model of car. Car filters come in different shapes, designs, and sizes; therefore, you should first remove the one in the car and buy a similar one that resembles it. For ideal results, ensure that you buy from a reputable store.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Idd_Aziz/2148367

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Monday, July 11, 2016

2016 - 2017 Compact SUV Comparison - Kelley Blue Book


For our annual state-of-the-segment compact SUV comparison test we rounded up six small SUVs and set off on a two-day, 450-mile drive that took us on a roundabout route from coastal-adjacent Kelley Blue Book headquarters in Irvine, California, to our local mountains and Big Bear Lake.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Five Factors That Affect Oil Change Intervals


Because modern vehicles are stronger, cleaner, and more durable than those of yesteryear, most automotive experts believe that changing motor oil every 3,000 miles is overkill. Depending on the make and model, some cars and trucks can safely travel upwards of 5,000 miles between changes. Car owners' manuals are starting to reflect this growing consensus with longer oil change intervals. There are, however, exceptions that may affect manufacturer's recommendations. Here are five of them.

1. Hard Driving

Almost as important as the actual mileage is the type of driving an owner does regularly. If he uses the car or truck to tow a trailer or pull heavy loads, that will invariably put more stress on the engine, causing it to operate at higher temperatures. Because extreme heat destroys the lubricating ability of oil through excessive oxidation, it will need to be switched out more often. In addition to towing heavy loads, driving on bumpy, unpaved road surfaces often puts more stress on the motor, causing it to run hotter than it normally would.

2. Environment

For obvious reasons, higher engine temps are more likely when it's warm outside. If you reside in a region of the country that experiences year-round warm weather, oil change intervals should be shortened. This is true whether you engage in hard driving or not. It is also important to note that environments that are very dusty and/or polluted can increase the risk of fluid contamination. In other words, there's a greater chance your motor oil will get dirty and need to be replaced. For those living in dusty desert towns or in polluted cities, it's often a good idea to visit the service station every 3,000 miles.

3. Short Commutes

It might surprise you to learn that a short daily commute may actually be harder on your engine than a slightly longer one. The reason? Because short trips do not give your motor the time it needs to reach an optimal operating temperature, lubricating fluids may be degraded. What actually happens is that excess fuel spills into the crankcase, diluting motor oil. This excess fuel is needed because cold engines require more gas than warm or hot ones. Spilt fuel can also break down the lubricating chemicals in the viscous liquid.

4. High Performance

If you have a turbo-charged engine, it will run hotter, on average, than a regular one. Even if you use synthetic liquid blends, it's probably a good idea to shorten oil change intervals with these vehicles. This is particularly true if you live in a warm environment, drive hard, or tend to travel over the speed limit for protracted periods of time.

5. Engine Age

With all other things being equal, the more miles you have on your odometer, the dirtier your motor will be. As such, the liquid that is used to lubricate moving metal components will get dirtier faster. Because dirty motor oil does not have the lubricating ability of clean fluid, it is more likely to cause friction that can do damage to vital engine parts. For this reason, change intervals should be shorter for high-mileage vehicles.

All drivers should consider these five factors before calculating a safe, reliable service schedule for their vehicle.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Andrew_Stratton/83489

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