General Car Maintenance

March 1, 2018

Windshields Should be Cleared in the Winter

It is a part of winter driving that happens all too often, you will have to get ice off the outside of the windshield, but inside a fog clouds your vision. Clearing a foggy windshield up is not as simple as turning on the defroster. Keeping your window clear in the winter is all about balancing the warmth and moisture inside your car with the cold, dry air on the outside. Too much moisture, and your cabin will reach the dew point, which leads to fog on the window. Until the inside is dry, your glass will remain fogged. There are some tips you can do to help eliminate this issue when driving. You will want to make sure the windshield is clean and dirt is removed. Dirt on the inside of your windshield gives moisture more to cling to. Use a good glass cleaner to remove any film or dirt that may have collected on your windshield. Before turning on the defroster, give your car’s heating system a few minutes to warm up. The air duct temperature needs to reach about 130 degrees before the defrost mechanism becomes effective, but make sure not to leave your car when it’s operating, because your car can get stolen. Once you turn the defroster on, turn it up high. You need to cover 90 percent of the glass with air in very poor weather, like freezing rain or snow and very cold temperatures, in order for the defroster to work effectively. Make sure that you are taking in fresh air from the outside of the car, if it’s snowing, clear the outside vents before pulling out of the driveway, by turning the recirculate button off. If you are recirculating air it can mean that moisture never leaves the cabin and de-fogging the windows becomes very difficult, if not impossible. If the defroster does not work for your vehicle, make sure to schedule an appointment and we can inspect the vehicle for you.
December 21, 2017

Noticing an Issue with the Alternator

  Taking proper care of your vehicle means making sure it is brought in on a regular basis for maintenance inspections. The alternator is a critical component to your vehicle’s operation. It only contains a few parts, but if the alternator starts to go, you may have issues with your vehicle. The alternator turns the mechanical energy of the engine’s rotating crankshaft into electricity through induction. The alternator also has wires that cut through a magnetic field that helps to induce the electrical current. The current is used to power the accessories in your vehicle like the headlights or radio. The alternator also helps to keep the battery fully charged to the power it needs to start the vehicle. If you have numerous accessories turned on, like the radio, headlights, and others, the alternator will need to work harder to maintain the necessary voltage needed.     The alternator for your vehicle supplies the power for the vehicle’s electrical needs. If it begins to lose electricity, so do the accessories that need that electricity to run properly. There may be erratic symptoms in your vehicle that could range from dim or extremely bright headlights, to the radio stopping abruptly. Other accessories like the power windows may start to slowdown if the alternator is starting to lose its current. When the alternator begins to fail, the battery starts to work harder to make up for the difference. This can cause the battery to wear out quicker than it should. The vehicle’s battery is not designed for any long-term power use, and it may result in it becoming unreliable. No matter what issue you notice with your vehicle, make sure to bring the vehicle in and we can inspect it for you.    
December 8, 2017

The Importance of a Cabin Filter

  The cabin filter in your vehicle is responsible for filtering the air before it enters the vehicle’s cabin. The cabin air filter catches pollen, dust, dirt and other impurities from the air, keeping the air purified for the vehicle and its passengers. It is important to keep the cabin air filter clean so when the heater or air conditioner is running, the air being emitted is quality air. The cabin air filter should be replaced every 15,000 to 30,000 miles or as needed. A cabin air filter cleans air entering your car through the car’s air, heater, and air conditioner vents. The concentration of unfiltered pollutants inside your vehicle can be more than six times higher than the outside air. The air filter helps to remove any air pollutants that can cause health problems. When you replace the cabin filter, you can help improve the air for the occupants in the vehicle, as well as improving the air quality in the cabin of the vehicle. A cabin filter will help to filters out 99.5% of airborne dust, pollen mold spores, and bacteria particles. This will help to keep the air in the vehicle in the best condition possible, while also making sure it is easy to breathe. You may also notice if there is an issue with the cabin filter based on how much air is produced from the vents. If it seems like not a lot is being produced or blown out, it could be caused by a poor cabin filter. If you ever notice an issue with the filter or anything else for your vehicle, make sure to contact us as soon as possible. By fixing the issue at the first sign, you can help keep the vehicle operating in the best condition possible, without a costly repair bill in the long run.  
December 5, 2017

Taking Care of the Windshield Wipers

      When you own a vehicle, you want it to be operating at top performance levels, as well as having the parts of the vehicle in the best condition possible. This should include inspecting the tires of the vehicle, fluid levels and oil, and also the windshield wipers. The windshield wipers are often forgotten about until they need to be used. This can cause problems because the wipers will help you see the road ahead of you and any vehicles, animals, or objects that might be in the way. With poor visibility, the chance for an accident increases.     The wipers should be checked regularly to ensure that the blades and arm are in efficient working condition. If you notice any wear or tear on the wipers, make sure to have them replaced as soon as possible. If the wipers make a noise when cleaning the windshield, or leave smear marks, it could indicate that they are wearing and will need to be replaced soon. The wipers will no long be able to clear the windshield efficiently, leading to impair visibility because it will not clean it completely.     Anytime that you notice something might be caught on the windshield, like a rock, chunk of ice, or other object, make sure to pull over as soon as it is safe to do so and remove it. If you continue to operate the windshield wipers with that stuck, you can wear out the wipers, as well as increase the chance you scratch the windshield. This can lead to an increased repair bill in the long run.     Also remember to fill up the reservoir with washer fluid. By doing so, you will have enough incase you need to use it to clean off the windshield when you drive. If you notice that you have to replace it often, it can indicate a leak for it. Make sure to bring the vehicle in and we can inspect it for you. Having the best visibility possible is important for your safety, as well as those around you, so make sure to check the windshield wipers regularly this winter.