Thirteen Often Neglected Auto Services

12 10 2017

Dale BertramIn honor of Friday the 13th this October, we thought we would have a little fun and tell you how to keep your car from turning into a “car of the driving dead!” It needs to be serviced regularly, yet so many fail to do so! Here is a list of items to keep in mind if you want to keep your vehicle running well…and safely!

 

  • Brakes
  • Charging System
  • Cooling System
  • Failing to have a tire alignment
  • Filter changes
  • Fluid checks
  • Ignoring lack of tire tread
  • Ignoring the check engine light when it illuminates
  • Ignoring TPMS light
  • Lights
  • Oil, lube and filter change
  • Tire pressure checks
  • Wipers

These are all relatively simple checks so don’t delay.  Have them checked today!

 

 

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Arizona Driving

13 07 2017

Dale BertramI am often asked how can drivers keep their cars running well during the extreme hot Phoenix weather?  Ask any technician at Fairway Auto Repair and we will tell you that getting your car serviced regularly and keeping your tires rotated goes a long way.  Arizona driving does require special help due to our extreme heat with triple-digit temperatures from late May through September.

Here is what we do when you bring your car to Fairway Auto Repair:

  • We inspect your tires’ tread and pressure –  Over or under-inflated tires increase the risk of losing traction or having a blowout. Typically, tire pressure needs to be adjusted seasonally as hot weather causes the air inside tires to expand and increases the pressure inside the tire.
  • We inspect your battery frequently –  While batteries may have guaranteed life time warranties elsewhere, in Arizona the life expectancy of even the best batteries tops out at about three years. Heat is very hard on batteries because the battery contains liquid and heat causes the fluids to evaporate. Low fluid levels will damage the internal structure of the battery causing it to die.
  • We inspect engine components – We always check belts, hoses and other engine components. Anything made of rubber suffers in Arizona’s extreme summers with hoses and belts becoming brittle, dry and prone to break or burst. While owner’s manuals make recommendations for typical wear and tear, keep in mind that Arizona’s climate is not considered typical and more frequent replacement of belts and hoses is a must.
  • We inspect and replace air filters frequently. In Arizona we drive through dust storms and that doesn’t do a car’s interior any favors. Thankfully we have air filters to stop all that dirt, dust, pollen and other debris from getting into the engine where it could damage the combustion chamber. Signs of a dirty filter include reduced mileage and reduced engine performance. You don’t want to drive with a dirty filter as it can no longer protect your engine from debris.

You can trust your car’s needs to Fairway Auto Repair to make sure it makes it through this heat.  To find out more about us, check out our other articles at www.fairwayautorepair.com.

 

 





Cars Want To Be Green For St Pat’s Too!

16 03 2017

Dale BertramEven if you don’t own the newest car on the block it can be greener! With a little tender loving care, it can give you a lot more miles and it will make it environmentally friendly…and save you money.  Improving the environment and your bank account at the same time is a win-win situation!

At Fairway Auto Repair, we know exactly what is needed.  Our techs check out your car’s battery, charging and starting systems; engine mechanical; powertrain control, onboard diagnostic check; fuel; ignition; and emissions systems.  This alone can improve gas mileage by four percent!  The oxygen sensor can be checked too, just to be safe.  That can improve gas mileage up to 40%!

Our technicians also look at your vehicle’s filters as a clogged filter can bring down fuel efficiency by as much as 10%…that’s 15 cents a gallon!  Spark plugs need checking too so they are firing properly.  Misfiring wastes fuel!

The cooling system can also cause a car to boil over if it isn’t in top form.  This can leave you sitting on the side of the road with steam coming out from under the hood.  This is bad at any time, but worse during peak driving hours when you can be the cause of a traffic jam! And you know what else…you guessed it…it wastes fuel and raises emissions.

Last but not least, our techs look at the tires.  If they are over-inflated it makes your vehicle less fuel efficient…if they are under-inflated…same scenario.  Tires need to be just right!

Being environmentally friendly is something we all can help with…especially when it comes to your vehicle!





The Temporary Spare Tire

16 02 2017

Dale BertramI have been noticing many cars driving down the road with the temporary spare tire or “donut” as some people call them. The spare tire diameter is smaller than the existing tire size. The reason for this is they don’t take up much space and the smaller tire weighs less than a full-size one.

Many of today’s cars don’t even have a spare tire; they come with a fix-a-flat type of kit only. If your car has an actual spare tire, it is only to be used as a temporary fix (that it what the “T” means in front of the tire size on the side wall), not exceeding 45 MPH in speed and to get you to the nearest repair shop.

I am amazed when I see a car on the freeway moving at 65 MPH plus on a temporary spare tire. Earlier I mentioned the temporary spare tire is a smaller diameter. This fact is important because if the spare is placed on a drive wheel, (on the front of a front-wheel drive, or on the rear of a rear-wheel drive car) it is even more critical to replace it as quickly as possible.

Different size tires from side-to-side on any car’s drive axle will damage the transmission/transaxle on a front drive or the differential assembly on a rear drive of the car. Never use a smaller temporary spare tire if you drive an all-wheel drive as this will damage the drivetrain unit that controls the all-wheel drive.

Tire issues never happen at a convenient time, so please check the air pressure and tread wear regularly. You can save yourself time and money while lengthening the life of your tires.

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Fairway Auto Repair





Driving In All Kinds Of Weather

29 12 2016

Dale BertramHere is a little checklist of things to do when driving in unusual weather … at home in Phoenix or elsewhere!

Driving In The Rain

  • Turn your headlights on – many states require it.
  • Remember that oil on the pavement can make driving conditions slick.
  • Should you hydroplane, keep the steering wheel straight but remove your foot from the gas.
  • It takes longer to stop on wet roads so adjust your speed accordingly.
  • Don’t drive closely behind large vehicles as their spray can reduce your visibility.
  • Make sure your wiper blades are working properly.
  • Make sure your tires have proper tread.
  • Drive carefully through puddles, they may be hiding a pothole.
  • If your windows fog use the defroster.
  • If you are in a thunderstorm and you need to pull over, do not park under trees.
  • Look out for downed branches and power lines.

Driving In Flood-Like Conditions

  • Driving through moving water could cause your vehicle to be swept away.
  • It only takes two feet of water to carry a car away.
  • If your carpets get wet do not turn on the ignition as it can damage your vehicle.  Have your car care provider check it out first!
  • Even a small amount of water can damage your braking system.
  • If you are driving through deep water and your vehicle stalls…do not attempt to restart it because it could result in engine damage.

Driving In Fog

  • Reduce your speed
  • Use low beam headlights
  • Use your defroster
  • Use your wipers
  • Poor visibility limits your vision when it comes to other vehicles, pedestrians, and animals…proceed with caution.

Driving In Ice

  • Bridges and overpasses freeze first
  • Reduce speed
  • Easy on the brakes
  • Keep a safe distance between your vehicle and others on the road
  • If you skid, turn your steering wheel into the skid, ease off the accelerator and do not slam on the brakes.
  • If you encounter black ice ease up on the gas rather than applying the brakes

Driving In Snow

  • Make sure your windows are clean and that accumulated snow is removed from the hood and top of the vehicle.
  • Drive slowly and allow ample stopping distance so you don’t collide with a vehicle ahead of you.
  • Do not slam on brakes…ease off gas gently and then lightly apply brakes.
  • If your area allows and it is necessary use chains and snow tires.

Driving With a False Sense of Security

Those who drive SUV’s and trucks and other four-wheel drive vehicles sometimes have a false sense of security. Slick highways put all vehicles on an equal footing so proceeding with caution is recommended.

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Fairway Auto Repair





You Might Be A Grinch If…

15 12 2016

Dale Bertram‘Tis the season when we think of all aspects of our lives in terms of the holidays.  I was thinking of the Grinch and how he basically made his little dog perform the task of a reindeer until the little guy almost broke down under the weight of the load he was expected to carry up and down mountains.

Some are guilty of that with their vehicles.  They expect it to perform miracles without thinking that it might break down due to neglect.  Are you a Grinch when it comes to your vehicle? Here are some clues that you are afflicted with Grinchitis.

You might be a Grinch if:

  1. You put off servicing your vehicle until it breaks down.  This costs you more money and hurts the environment too!
  2. You drive on tires that are mismatched and bald.  I am told that being “matchy, matchy” when it comes to clothes is out but this does not apply to tires.  I am also told that bald is beautiful, but again, not when it comes to your tires!
  3. You put off buying new wiper blades and become a road hazard when it rains!
  4. Your headlights are so cloudy you can barely see or be seen.
  5. Your brakes won’t stop you on a row of greenbacks, much less a dime.
  6. Your car shakes, rattles and rolls and it has nothing to do with that 50’s music you are playing!
  7. You use your vehicle as a storage container or a dumpster.
  8. People frequently write “wash me” in the dirt and dust on your car.
  9. Instead of getting your radiator/cooling system repaired, you keep adding anti-freeze and let it drip out, endangering animals that may lick it and become sick or even die.
  10. You drive around with a black stream of smoke coming from the back of your vehicle.

If any of these apply to you, call Fairway Auto Repair immediately.  We have the cure for Grinchitis!

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Winter Is Coming…

1 12 2016

Dale BertramThere are so many activities around the holidays: Winterfests, pageants, city light displays and candlelit ceremonies, caroling and shopping, shopping and more shopping!  It is all great fun but can cause stress overload if you aren’t prepared.  Part of the preparations should be getting your car serviced.

 Dry weather driving spoils us here in Phoenix and when the rainy season begins it is often a shock to us.  We have to learn how to drive in it all over again. The oil that accumulates on the highways becomes slippery when wet and can cause our vehicles to slip, slide and spin.  Fog can also be a hazard at times on those colder nights, causing poor visibility. What can you do to be prepared?  Drive carefully and make sure your vehicle is properly serviced.  At Fairway Auto Repair we will make sure:

  • Your tires have good tread
  • Your tires are properly inflated
  • Your wiper blades are still functioning well. After baking in the dry heat they get brittle and don’t perform well.
  • Your fluids are topped off

With just a little forethought, we can all enjoy the season safely!  Happy Holidays, everyone!

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