Phoenix Auto Repair

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Yearly Archives: 2019

Vitality

Vitality

Our vehicles are so important to us so it is important that we don’t take them for granted! Here are a few things that Fairway Auto Repair recommends our customers have us check when they bring their cars in for service. Lights - These are often overlooked. Headlights, brake lights, turn signals and taillights are all vital to our safety! Brakes – Brake pads need to be replaced now and then. If they go bad…you don’t stop when you need to! Tire Pressure – Over-inflated or under-inflated damages the tire and shortens their life. Tire pressures need to be just right! Having a flat tire is not only an inconvenience, it can be dangerous too! Tire Tread – if your tread is worn, or if your tires have lumps or bumps you could slip and slide (no ice needed) and even have a blowout! This could cause an accident! Power Steering Fluid – Trying to drive a car without power steering is almost impossible. To keep your car under your control, thi ... read more

Misconceptions

Misconceptions

Here are some of the most common misconceptions that I hear on a regular basis:Misconception # 1: Your car manufacturer specifies regular maintenance schedules just to get you back into their shop and make more money off of you. Although manufacturers are making cars that last longer and require less overall maintenance, they do require preventive maintenance. If maintained properly, you can expect your car to go well over l00,000 miles without major repairs. For instance, most engines have timing belts that must be replaced (as maintenance) before they break and cause expensive damage. Misconception # 2: A shop can give you an accurate price quote over the phone without seeing your car.You can waste your time calling 20 different shops and get 20 different prices and chances are every one of them will be wrong. Unless the shop has had a chance to examine or test drive the car in person, there is no way to accurately diagnose your ... read more

Drips and Puddles... Signs Your Car Needs Attention

Drips and Puddles... Signs Your Car Needs Attention

Those annoying under the car drips can leave your driveway and garage floor a mess…in fact everywhere you park becomes a victim to this mess. They are also a sign that something is wrong and needs to be taken care of. The only drip you don’t need to be concerned with is the condensation from your air conditioner. Everything else is a signal that there is a problem. The small drips are giving you fair warning that if ignored, serious problems are in your future. Here are a few examples: A reddish brown drip may mean one of three things; leaking transmission, over tightened pan gasket or a leaking front seal. A green or orange-red drip suggests a cooling system problem such as leaking hose or radiator. A brown to brownish-black drip that is thick in consistency is more than likely engine oil. This is not a huge problem if it is slight but when it grows to puddle size it is a sign of something serious and if not kept under control could mean severe engine trouble. A l ... read more

How's The View From Your Windshield?

How's The View From Your Windshield?

How is the view from your windshield? It is interesting that 80 percent of vehicle accidents are contributed to poor visibility and yet the average driver gets their wipers replaced every two and a half years. They should be replaced every six months or at most every year. Think of what your windshield encounters! Rain Insects coming to a messy end Dust Pollen Bird droppings All these need to be cleared from your windshield when you are driving. If your wipers are worn and you turn them on to clear buildup you could end up with an even smearier blur instead of clear glass. Most wiper blades are made with rubber that breakdown over time just like your belts and hoses. The ozone oxidizes the rubber causing cracks to form on the surface. Hot summer days are hard on wipers too because a windshield can get very hot. This makes the rubber lose flexibility and crack. All of this causes the chattering and smearing when you turn them on to clear the windshield. What is this tellin ... read more

Replacing a Car Battery

Replacing a Car Battery

Our vehicles are much more complicated than they used to be. Each system is controlled by a separate computer module and each car can have as many as twenty of these modules. They each have their own “memory” and they depend upon the car’s battery to keep the memory intact. We all have had to reset our car’s clock after a battery disconnect but these days more can be lost than your car’s clocks time. Here are some of the issues that can occur after a battery power failure or disconnect: Loss of time on the clock, loss of set radio stations and anti-theft lockout Stalling, failure of emission monitors Loss of power seat and mirror positions Door control loss such as locking, driver door switch pad, child lock switches, etc., which are associated with the driver's door. In most of the cases the driver door module acts as a master and others act as slaves in communication protocols. If you have replaced your car’s battery on your own and yo ... read more

Gasoline: Additives and Detergents

Gasoline: Additives and Detergents

Gasoline has been around for decades and the changes to the formulation have been incredible. The basic refined crude is mostly the same. What makes each brand unique is the additives and detergents package mixed in. Regular fuel has less additives than the premium blend. One of the biggest changes to gasoline is the introduction of ethanol. Ethanol has brought us lower emissions and a little better MPG, but it also has caused some new drivability issues. Most fuels started with a small amount of ethanol; now the base amount is 10%. As we randomly test fuel from the tanks we see as much as 30% ethanol. What that means is the ethanol and the detergents added do not work together! Ethanol washes the detergent away that is supposed to help stop carbon build up inside the engine. Type “engine carbon” into a browser and there are many articles to scan. The tough part for you, the driver, is you don’t know it’s happening until it gets bad. Here are the symptoms of ... read more

Is Your Automotive Service and Repair Shop Certified?

Is Your Automotive Service and Repair Shop Certified?

In a recent study of several hundred people, the question was asked, “Does the auto shop you use have certified technicians?” The vast majority said they assumed that they were. The shop you use may have certified people, but the reality is there is no mandatory certification required to own or operate an auto repair shop. This is one part of our industry that I would like to see reviewed. A professional that cuts hair or fingernails is required to be state certified, but a mechanic who works on tires, engines or brakes doesn’t need a single day of training or any tools to do so. Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) offers a series of tests that a technician can take to be certified in many different areas of the car. All tests are voluntary, not required. At my shop, I require all staff to be ASE certified and I know many other shops do as well. ASE tests are all written tests and it does not necessarily mean a person is competent to work on a car. AAA Approved aut ... read more

A Healthy Car

A Healthy Car

Cars are built better than ever these days and give us miles of service. Keeping them healthy is important and extends their life. Oil is their lifeblood. Dirty oil makes it harder for your engine to turn over and causes premature engine wear. Belts and hoses are made of very durable material with relatively long lives but they do deteriorate over time. We recommend an eight to ten-year replacement cycle. Leaks are not normal except for condensation from your air conditioner. 11 different fluids keep your car running; brake fluid, antifreeze, engine oil, power steering fluid, air conditioner refrigerant, shock absorber fluid, battery electrolyte, windshield washer solvent, rear axle or CV boot lubricant and fuel. If any of these leaks, they need to be fixed right away. Tires need to be kept properly inflated to save gas and tire wear and rotated every six months. Coolant, when neglected c ... read more

How Often Should You Check The Oil Level In Your Car?

How Often Should You Check The Oil Level In Your Car?

Question: How often should you check the oil level in your car? Every 1,000 miles of driving; the newer the car and the lower the mileage. This seems to be the forgotten “check list” item. Question: How often do you check the oil level in your car? From what we can tell…rarely! Our shop is seeing more cars come in with no visible oil on the dipstick. Granted, the majority of the cars have 75,000 miles or more. Remember, that many cars with smaller engines also have less oil capacity (four quarts or less) to lubricate the moving parts. When technology builds in lights, bells and whistles to replace opening the hood and pulling a dipstick or visually inspecting the under-hood fluid, I get concerned. The warning systems are great backups but should not replace physically inspecting items. The reason for the oil consumption concern is due to low tension piston rings, used to get better miles per gallon. This causes engines to run ho ... read more