Phoenix Auto Repair

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Yearly Archives: 2018

The Check Engine Light

The Check Engine Light

Your car has many computers that monitors your engine for the best performance; your transmission for proper shifting, your braking system for safe stopping, and they also monitor many other devices to make sure they are working properly. If a system detects a problem, it needs to alert you, so you can bring your car in to Fairway Auto Repair for service. This is the role of the check engine light. The check engine light looks different from car to car, but it's always a yellow or orange color, usually with a picture of an engine. If the check engine light comes on solid (not blinking), you can continue to drive the car until you have a chance to bring it in. This does not mean you should ignore it. When the check engine light is on, the car defaults to a backup system that controls all the important systems. Driving around for a short time until you can set up an appointment is no problem, but continuing to drive more than 20 miles is a ... read more

Viruses, Hackers, and Bugs…Oh My!

Viruses, Hackers, and Bugs…Oh My!

Self-driving cars are being tested across the nation. This type of vehicle offers many advantages. It will be almost impossible to steal one. Some problems can be fixed with a software download. Accidents will be minimal or non-existent. It won’t matter if your reflexes or eye-sight aren’t what they used to be. Of course, anything that can be used for good encourages some to find out how to use it for bad. Here are some disadvantages. Hackers are already finding ways to get past a car’s security system and hack in. With all the “partners” needed to mobilize a self-driving car there are more ways for a hacker to infiltrate any system related to the vehicle, from the manufacturer to the software companies. Cyber criminals can hold a vehicle “hostage” until they get paid using malware. Just think, anything a cyber criminal can do to a computer system, they can do to a self-driving car. The good news is that manufacturers and software devel ... read more

Temporary Spare Tire

Temporary Spare Tire

I 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 r ... read more

Cars Want To Be Green For St. Pat's Too!

Cars Want To Be Green For St. Pat's Too!

Even 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 ... read more

Estimate

Estimate

Today automotive service and repair shops are getting more calls than ever asking for an estimate and we at Fairway Auto Repair are no exception. We understand that consumers in Phoenix are searching for the best value for their hard earned dollars. It has been a while since I addressed this issue but many are asking exactly how we, and other auto repair shops arrive at the estimated price so I thought I would take a moment and explain this again. An estimate consists of three parts: The labor rate Parts and supplies Overhead Fairway Auto Repair and other automotive service and repair shops estimate the labor rate by how long any given service or repair should take. There are guidelines set down by the manufacturer of each vehicle estimating the time it takes a trained technician to perform any given task. Parts and supplies are included in the estimate, of course. We use two categories of parts, OEM or “Aftermarket.” The parts manufactured by the original car manufa ... read more

Is Your Car Happy?

Is Your Car Happy?

We know cars don’t really have feelings but if your car did…would it be happy with how you treat it? Think about it for just a moment. Your car does so much for you. It gets you where you need to be…and back again. It hauls you and other passengers and groceries and sometimes lots of baggage or tools or gardening supplies. If it had feelings what would it take to make it feel cared for? It would want to be clean and shiny…inside and out. The windows would be the mirror of its soul so make sure they are clean and that the wiper blades work properly. Fluids are essential so it would want its fluid intake to be changed when necessary so it drinks healthful fluids to lubricate all its parts. How are the tires? Do they resemble a worn pair of shoes or worse…a flattened donut? Has it been a while since the tires were checked for proper inflation? I’m sure it would want its brakes checked so it wouldn’t be in fear of crashing or running ... read more

Vehicles Vulnerable to Hacking

Vehicles Vulnerable to Hacking

We at Fairway Auto Repair love cars and it is also how we make our living. This is why you can count on us to stay up-to-the minute on all things involving cars. When the FBI and the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently said motor vehicles are increasingly vulnerable to hacking, we took note and wanted to share it with all our friends in Phoenix! What is one of the many advantages of a connected car? Software updates that a driver simply downloads. Imagine receiving an email update for your vehicle and instead of it being legitimate, the links are taking you to a malicious website/software. All this “connectivity” makes us vulnerable to those who want to use it for bad. Most of the time, being aware of the possibility is helpful. Know who has access to your vehicle’s information. We password protect our smart phones, laptops and other devices and are very wary of giving this information to just anybody. We need to be just as concerne ... read more

Your Car Needs Love Too!

Your Car Needs Love Too!

This Valentine’s Day show your car some love! Just think of all they do for you! They get driven in all kinds of weather. They sit out waiting for you in less than ideal conditions. They get splashed with grime from treated roads and even goo from road construction. This Valentine’s Day show your car you care! Start your car’s day with a pick-me-up. Make sure all the fluids are topped off. If it is overdue for an oil change, this is the time to make sure it is pampered with a lube, oil and fresh new filter! Nothing says you really care like a complete bumper to bumper inspection. It doesn’t take much time and your technician can determine the state of your car’s health. After your car has been serviced, head to the spa (a.k.a. car wash) and give it the works! It will feel better and look better! Depending on your habits, sometimes cars are filled with drink cups and drive thru bags. Remove the trash! Vacuum its carpets and make sure the fl ... read more

Transmission Service Explained

Transmission Service Explained

Simple wear and tear can take its toll on your transmission. Over time the additives in the transmission fluid can be depleted and the transmission fluid will become oxidized and contaminated. This means the fluid may not lubricate properly and cause the internal parts to wear prematurely, shortening the life of your transmission. I’m often asked, “How much should it cost and how often should I service my transmission? ”The automotive industry has no published standards for servicing a transmission. This is sad but true. The only guideline is the owner’s manual from the manufacturer. Some car company’s say never service the transmission, while others have specific intervals. In general, we suggest the time to service your transmission is 50,000 miles on an average car, however, some cars will go longer intervals and some shorter, that is why I recommend you find a shop you trust and let them help you find a service track that fits your needs and driving ... read more

Your Vehicle Warranty

Your Vehicle Warranty

Do I Have To Use A Dealer To Keep My Warranty In Effect? When a customer buys a new car, they are always concerned that if they keep coming to my shop for routine maintenance and repair it will void the warranty! I always tell them to relax because the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) the nation's consumer protection agency says NO! It is illegal for a dealership to even suggest that they might deny your warranty coverage because your routine maintenance and repair is done by an independent repair shop! Oil changes, fluid exchanges, tire rotations, brake pads, belt and hose replacements and other services are considered "routine" maintenance and are essential to keep your car running well for years to come. A complete list of these services can be found in your owner's manual. Customers also are concerned that the use of aftermarket parts may void their warranty. This will not void your warranty and you can even use recycled parts and your warranty w ... read more