October is National Car Care Month

28 09 2017

Dale BertramTwice a year the Car Care Council, a non-profit organization, celebrates National Car Care Month.  This happens in April and again in October.  The reason they feel the need to spend money on advertising the importance of car care is because so many consumers don’t take care of their vehicles properly.

Neglect of this kind causes accidents, expensive breakdowns, pollution, using more fuel than necessary and even lost time at work! The Car Care Council hopes a gentle reminder twice yearly will prevent all this.

Here is a check list for safety, dependability and savings!

  • Have all fluids checked
  • Have air filter checked
  • Have battery and charging system checked
  • Have belts and hoses checked
  • Have oil and lubrication service
  • Have all lights checked
  • Have all wipers and fluid checked
  • Have tires checked for proper inflation and tread
  • Have suspension system checked
  • Have brake system checked

Many consumers feel a false sense of security today because they have cell phones or On-Star so they are able to call someone for help.  Yes…these are great when you need them but of course avoiding a breakdown or accident due to neglect or not to pollute the air or use more gas than necessary is a better choice.

If you have been putting off service or repair; call your car care provider today and not only will you be driving a safer, more eco-friendly vehicle, you will save money in the long run!

 

 

 

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Being Economical and Ecological

21 09 2017

Dale BertramMany people are not anxious to trade in their car for a “greener” model just yet.  They do want to be economical and ecological and you can be!  Here is what you need to do!

  1. Use the proper grade of gasoline as indicated in your owner’s manual. If your vehicle calls for regular, you won’t benefit by paying for premium gas.
  2. When it is time to fill up, really fill up. Putting in so much today and so much tomorrow costs more.
  3. Do not top off your gas.
  4. Make sure your gas cap is properly closed.
  5. Fill up when you get to ¼ of fuel left to lengthen the life of your fuel pump. Running on empty can destroy the pump!
  6. Drive the speed limit. If you drive at 65 mph instead of 75 mph you would save 13%.  If you drive 55 mph you can save 25%!  Every five miles over 65 mph costs you about 24 cents per gallon.
  7. Idling just uses gas needlessly and hurts the environment.
  8. Remove excess weight from your trunk and luggage rack! Extra weight costs more in fuel.
  9. Keep your car properly maintained. For example, dirty air filters and improperly inflated tires can cost you 13% more at the pump.
  10. Jack rabbit starts and braking on a dime also use excessive amounts of fuel.
  11. Know where you are going. Use a GPS to avoid having to back track and drive around aimlessly.
  12. Maintain a safe following distance so you don’t have to keep braking and accelerating.
  13. Take off slowly from a full stop.
  14. Park in the shade when it is hot outside. It uses more fuel to cool down a hot interior when you put on the air conditioning.  It also costs more to drive with the windows down due to wind resistance.
  15. Inoperative 02 sensors (oxygen sensors) need to be fixed as soon as possible. When an 02 sensor gets lazy, fuel efficiency goes down.
  16. If your check engine light is illuminated it means a component has failed. Gas mileage is hurt by failed components.
  17. Worn spark plugs, ignition wires, distributor caps and rotor buttons can cause a dramatic decrease in gas mileage.
  18. A carbon clogged fuel system and valves cause poor fuel economy and a sluggish engine.

Keep in mind that when you save fuel, you are helping the environment!  To get your vehicle where it needs to be call Fairway Auto Repair today and we’ll make sure your car is on the cutting edge economically and ecologically.

 

 





The “New Car” Smell Can Be Bad For You!

14 09 2017

Dale BertramMany people know right off that the new car smell is bad news.  It makes their eyes water, gives them headaches, and nausea.  Some even experience a sore throat and immune system disorders.  These chemicals that cause the new car smell are toxic.

The smell comes from volatile organic compounds.  Even after the smell wears off you may notice a “fog” on the inside of your windshield and these same compounds cause that to happen.  This mix of compounds can consist of over 100 different chemicals.  The base of the compound is petroleum and it can be found in your car’s carpet, dashboard, solvent, and glue.  If you have had new carpet installed in your home you may experience the same smell. I have heard of office workers having to go home after new carpet has been laid in their building because they got sick almost immediately from the fumes.

Some countries limit the amount of these compounds manufacturers can use but so far the United States has not.  Car manufacturers have received complaints so they are trying to limit the problem by minimizing the release of the toxic chemicals.  Leather and fabric upholstery both generate volatile organic compounds so it isn’t as simple as selecting a different material to limit the smell.

The smell is most noticeable in the first two months of manufacturing and does eventually wear off, as you know.  If your new car smell is particularly potent it is vital that you leave the windows down as much as possible to air it out.  Even leaving them open a small bit can help. Parking in the sun makes the fumes worse so try to avoid that as much as possible. Air from outside is the only thing that will help.  Turning on the air just recirculates the toxins. Next time you “test drive” a new car that has been sitting in the sun with the windows rolled up you will get a good dose of these compounds.

Getting a new car is always a fun experience but we at Fairway Auto Repair just wanted you to be aware of these dangerous compounds so you can enjoy your car without getting sick from that new car smell!

 

 

 





Un-necessary Service

7 09 2017

Dale BertramI hear the phrase un-necessary service and wonder what that means. We visit the doctor for physicals, we visit the dentist for cleanings, we have our home air-conditioning unit cleaned and checked, a yearly eye exam and of course, the car needs a checkup too.

All of these professionals recommend some kind of service or checks to keep everything working properly. Most shops recommend services on cars that come in to their bays using the guidelines set out by the manufacturers or from the shops’ experience of early component failures. Sometimes there are a few recommendations and sometimes there are many service recommendations.

We recommend service to keep your car safe and reliable, just like the dentist tells you about issues developing with your teeth and gums. We know no one likes to spend hard earned dollars on maintenance services, especially when after these services are performed the car seems to run as usual with no noticeable differences.

I have found there is basically two types of philosophy on maintenance. The people who believe in maintaining and those who believe it’s better to wait until it breaks, then fix it. There are at least 30,000 parts on the average new car and over 5,000 of them are moveable parts. All moving parts require a clean source of lubricating oils, coolant or greases along with filters set in place to catch harmful materials. In addition, we have electronic parts that can be affected by poor maintenance habits. The simplest of new cars have more computing power than the Apollo Moon Lander. In fact, you could get to the moon with just 1/10th the computing power found on the modern car! Today’s electronics are so sophisticated that cars may run well even when there are serious failures in progress. The systems have enough authority to mask developing problems. By the time you have a detectable malfunction, one that you can feel or sense, you may have damaged expensive parts. The only outward indication the driver may get is a warning lamp on the dash. Poor maintenance practices can force electronics to work overtime, or carry excess current to compensate for worn out spark plugs, clogged filters, and more. Continuous operation in overtime builds heat in electronic components which leads to what engineers call “exceeding the duty cycle.”

In the end, it’s always the customer’s choice. Preventative maintenance is optional. Some people feel their car is running fine and they don’t need the service recommended by the auto service center. We certainly won’t try to talk you into saving money by caring for your car. You can choose to do preventative maintenance on a timetable that you control or you can wait until your car breaks unexpectedly, leaving you stranded without transportation and a potentially large repair bill. Neither philosophy is right or wrong. We are always here to help you either way!

 

 





Electric Vehicle Updates

31 08 2017

Dale Bertram– According to the ChargePoint report, 542,000 electric cars have been sold in the U.S. to date.

– Tesla Model S is by far the best-selling electric car in the U.S.

– Bloomberg New Energy Finance released a study recently forecasting that electric cars will be reducing oil demand significantly by 2040.

– Ride-hailing firm Lyft plans to deliver at least one billion rides in electric, autonomous vehicles by 2025.

– According to the most recent data compiled by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), the 1997 Accord and 1998 Civic were the most stolen cars nationwide in 2016.

– Nissan will be showing the next-generation Leaf all-electric car during National Drive Electric Week, following right after the global reveal on September 5.

– Volkswagen’s Electrify America subsidiary is partnering with Texas-based EVgo to establish a network of electric vehicle charging stations across the United States.

– Bloomberg analysis piece points to natural gas vehicles having failed in a race won by cheap gasoline prices and growth in electric vehicle sales.

– Lyft is focusing on self-driving cars.

– Lyft says it got a boost from Uber’s woes!

– UK plans to stop sale of all diesel, petrol cars by 2040.  

 

 





Protecting Your Vehicle from Predators!

24 08 2017

Dale BertramIn an effort to be “greener”, plant-based biodegradable materials are being used in cars today.  This is great for the economy as it reduces waste.  It turns out though, that what is good for the earth is also enjoyed by four-legged creatures.  Yes…rodents are using their sharp, little teeth to chew right through wiring, hoses, and anything plastic.  They make themselves cozy little nests to live in.

You might wonder why your car is leaking fluid, or has some other problem, when it was just checked out.  It could be a rodent invasion.  Chewing through components or adding such things as acorns and seeds to your vehicle is bound to cause issues.

What can you do?  Here are a few suggestions we found when reviewing this problem:

  • Paint wires with hot sauce
  • Cover components with metal mesh (and any place they might build a nest)
  • Use electrical tape treated with capsaicin (think super-hot chili)

The best deterrent is probably finding a solution to keep them out of your garage entirely.  If you can think of other solutions, please, let us know so we can pass it along to others who have found their vehicle invaded by the furry menaces.

 

 

 





More Fun Facts…

17 08 2017

Dale BertramModern Times

-The average vehicle fuel consumption across the board is 23 miles per gallon.

-The US consumes half of the world’s gasoline.

-Each year, more than $60 billion worth of vehicle maintenance goes unperformed.

-Traffic congestion wastes three billion gallons of gas each year.

-The average American will spend two weeks of their life sitting at red lights.

-It takes half and ounce of gasoline to start a car.

-Faulty oxygen sensors account for 40 percent of all check engine light related issues.

Historical Times

-In 1923, 173 new inventions by women for cars had been reported.  Among these were a carburetor and an electric engine starter.

-The first car tires were white!

-Ford Motor Company formed in 1903.

-Chevrolet Motor Company formed in 1911.

-Dodge Motor Company formed in 1914.

-Harry Houdini, the famous magician, was the first to fly solo in a plane in Australia.  He taught himself to drive a car so he could get to the airfield, and never drove again!