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Yearly Archives: 2010


There are exceptions of course, but most women (and some men, too) are not comfortable making decisions on their own when it comes to keeping their automobiles healthy and reliable. Most of us rely on either our fathers, our husbands, or some other male we trust in our lives for help with our cars. And most of us honestly prefer to not take responsibility for that big hunk of complicated metal we drive, beyond maybe keeping it clean and fed! It all comes down to what we know and what we don’t know. If you want to feel more confident and in control concerning the care and maintenance of your car, (short of taking courses to become an auto tech!), you simply need to choose an auto repair/service shop that will be the right fit for you and your vehicle. The following checklist is a way to determine whether a shop is indeed a quality shop that will provide you with a stress-free, trustworthy, and pleasant experience. Remember, never be afraid to ask a shop these questions: 1. Are ... read more


Auto Maintenance


You know that the engine oil in your vehicle needs to be changed regularly. But did you know that there are other fluids that need to be checked and changed at regular intervals? These other fluids are in your cooling system, power steering system, automatic transmission, and brake system. They are all products which go through temperature changes, have additive packages in them, and are petroleum-based just like your engine oil. Each fluid requires attention: 1. Your engine coolant turns acidic as it ages. When this happens, it will cause damage to the engine and cooling system components. Coolant in good condition will be within the neutral range of the pH scale. A thorough service center will check coolant pH and recommend coolant changes when needed BEFORE damage occurs. 2. Brake system fluid collects both moisture from the environment and wear metal from the brake system itself. These contaminants cause damage and premature wear to the brake system components, so the fluid c ... read more


Auto Repair

What is the best thing to do if my accelerator pedal gets stuck on the freeway?

There has been almost a panic created by the media over the recent “stuck accelerator pedals” in various Toyota vehicles. Just this week in San Diego, an older gentleman called 911 with an out of control Prius and drew the CHP to his rescue. It has also been suggested that in some of these cases, the incidents were not because of a stuck pedal, but due to driver error or even mis-aligned floor mats. Regardless of the cause, when something like this happens, the worst thing to do is panic! The simplest, safest thing to do is to simply put the car in neutral, turn on your flashers, and coast to the side of the road as soon as possible. This will not hurt your transmission. When the car is in neutral, you still have your braking and steering power, so you will be able to guide your vehicle to a safe place and use the brakes to stop. Shutting off the ignition is not recommended as then your steering and braking capabilities are gone. A recent Washington Post article and an October ... read more




Have you checked your tire pressures recently? Do you know the birth date of your tires? When did you last run your hand over the tire’s surface and look for cracks or uneven wear? Have you checked to see if the treads are a healthy distance above the wear bars? If you have answered no to any of these questions, you are neglecting one of the most important friends you have! Without your tires, your car won’t go anywhere! And if your tires are not treated well, you may end up with a problem on your hands that could result in serious injury, even death. Here’s why: 1.Tire pressures: if the amount of air in your tires is too low, there is an increased chance of tire failure. There will also be a decrease in mileage as well as an increase in contribution to air pollution. More gas is needed to move the vehicle, thus contributing to more emissions in the air. If the amount of pressure is too high, the tire has less contact with the ground, leading to a less comfortable ride but also ... read more




For many of us today, the economic climate is prohibitive to buying a new car. Keeping the car you have healthy, reliable, and fun to drive is not difficult. It just means spending a little time getting to know your car better and following a simple maintenance program. Most vehicle manufacturers recommend a regular interval service routine. Either check your car manual, or call your trusted automotive shop to learn what those intervals are. In general, it is best to bring your car in for service at 4k, 30k, 60k, 7500k, and 90k mileage intervals. Each service will be an opportunity for your vehicle to be checked and for any problems to be identified. In between maintenance services, you can help prevent large repair bills by doing the following: 1. check your oil level 2. check your fluid levels (brake, coolant, power steering) 3. check tire pressures 4. keep track of time and mileage on your timing belt. Also, stay in tune with your vehicle; listen for unfamiliar noise ... read more


Auto Maintenance
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