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How to Maintain a Healthy Coolant System in your Car

With summer well underway in White Lake, MI you want to make sure you are doing all you can to prevent unwanted breakdowns. A large part of that is keeping the engine cool. That last thing you want to see on a summer road trip is the temperature gauge creeping into the red zone. What is the Cooling System? A typical 4-cylinder car cruising at 50 mph produces about 4,000 controlled explosions per minute as spark plugs ignite the fuel in the cylinders. This is what propels your car down the road, but also produces an enormous amount of heat. If not controlled, that extreme temperature will destroy your engine. That is where the cooling system comes in. It helps maintain an optimal temperature. The system consists of several parts including hoses, pumps, caps, fans, a radiator, thermostat, and reserve tank. Coolant flows through the passages inside the engine block, collecting heat. Then it flows to the cylinder heads, collecting more heat. Next is passes the thermostat ... read more

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Do I Need New Tires?

Checking for worn tires is more important than you might think, and probably something you don’t do often enough. But every time you are on the road, your tires do the brunt of the work and take the most wear. Unfortunately the National High Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that tire failure causes about 11,000 vehicle crashes every year. This is why they suggest you check your tires once a month. What are you looking for? Here are just a few warning signs: 1. Low Tread Depth The treads on your tires give you the traction you need to drive safely and efficiently. If you consistently drive on wet, slick, or snowy roads, this is even more important. The tread depth should never fall below 1/16 of an inch. Newer tiers have a tread wear indicator bar built in. But with older tires you will have to measure manually. You can buy a professional gauge to measure the tread depth, or simply use the penny test. Take your penny, head side down, and insert it between the ... read more

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Why Won’t My Car Start?

You might be in for a bad day if you turn the key in the ignition and your car won’t start. Starter problems are frustrating. There are a number of things under the hood that can prevent your car from starting. In fact, pretty much everything under the hood can keep your car from starting. Here are just six of the most common reasons your car won’t start: 1. Human Error First, your car might not start because of something silly—a small mistake you don’t usually make under normal circumstances. For example, some newer models won’t let you start the car until you fasten your seatbelt. Or, if you drive an automatic, your car must be in park before you can start it. If you drive a manual, you might not have the clutch pressed down all the way and your foot on the break. Or you might be out of gas. Just check a few of these small issues first before climbing out of your car to check under the hood. 2. Dead Battery This is usually the first thing drivers check because it is ... read more

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5 Essential Tips for Summer Car Care

Unlike school, car care does not take a break between Memorial Day and Labor Day. In fact, because it is road trip and outdoor adventure season, you want your car in better condition than ever. However, the hotter months can wreak havoc during this season of break downs. High temps and dust can take a toll on your car and it’s important systems. Luckily, these essential services and auto repairs will help keep your car running safely and smoothly all summer long in Ortonville, MI. 1. Keep it Clean A long, wet winter and the leftover reside can cause corrosion, which is damaging to your vehicle. The first thing you want to do before kicking off summer is a full audit of your car, both inside and out. Look for rust spots and salt residue on the undercarriage. Check the rubber components like wiper blades and seals. Replace any items as necessary, and wash off all winter residue. Be sure to also clean your floor mats if you track road salt into the car. 2. Check the Ti ... read more

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Why is the Oil Filter Important?

While you are on the road your engine works very hard to keep your vehicle moving. There are so many moving parts working together for every second, and the engine gets hot. The oil helps keep the engine cool and the other components operating smoothly. That is why clean motor oil is so important. If you leave it unfiltered, even for a short period of time, the oil could become saturated in tiny particles that could wear down important parts of the engine. How Does an Oil Filter Work? The outside of the filter is a metal can with a sealing gasket the presses tightly against the engine’s mating surface. The base of the can is perforated with holes just inside the gasket, and a central hole is threaded to mate with the oil filter assembly connected to the engine block. Inside the can is a filter, usually made from synthetic fiber material. As the oil circulates through the can it passes through the filter and re-enters the engine through the central hole. You want good ... read more

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Teach Your Kids These 5 Good Driving Habits Early

As a parent it is both exciting and frightening when it is time for your son or daughter to get their learner’s permit or driver’s license. Are you ready for them to get behind the wheel? While most kids don’t really think about driving until a year before they can get a permit, your children are probably watching the way you handle yourself on the road. So every time you don’t stop at a stop sign, or yell at another driver, or check your phone—your children take notice. If you want your teens to become safer drivers you can’t just rely on the driver’s education teacher. You need to teach by example. So start living these good driving habits, and teaching them to your kids as soon as possible. 1. Keep Road Rage in Check While driving it is important to stay cool under pressure. Model patience and etiquette. Stay calm and relaxed. Do not let the other drivers get to you, especially while you are driving with your children. Using inappropriate gestures, cursing, or driving ... read more

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Emergency Essentials to Keep in Your Car for Summer Road Trips

With school almost out and summer rapidly approaching, one thing you are probably looking forward to is a family road trip. These summer vacations are a great way to explore, bond, and make memories with those closest to you. But before striking out on the open road, there are a few things you need in addition to your flip flops and swimsuit to ensure you have a fun, but also safe trip. Get your Car Inspected Before striking off from Ortonville, MI the first thing you want to do is get your car in for an inspection and any necessary Fenton, MI auto repair. This preliminary check will ensure your car can deliver you safely to your destination. Granted, this will not mean an emergency won’t happen. But it will improve safety and reduce your risk of breaking down on the side of the road. What to Take on Your Summer Road Trip These are the things to pack for emergency car care: Owner’s manual. Make sure you have your car’s manual stored in the glove compartmen ... read more

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5 Big Reasons to Check Your Wheel Alignment

Today’s cars are designed to give you a smooth, gentle ride. But if your vehicle isn’t offering the same amount of comfort on the road, and you notice rattling, shuddering, or pulling, then you might need to consider a wheel alignment. Because of rough roads and driving habits, your car can go out of alignment. And the wheel alignment can impact several important vehicle systems. The only way to correct the problem is with auto repair. And you want to get the problem repaired as soon as possible before it starts to impact the life of the tires or your safety on the road. What is a Wheel Alignment? This is an auto repair often overlooked by vehicle owners, but should be part of routine maintenance. During a wheel alignment the technician hoists the car in the air and adjusts the relative angle of the tires until they are set in the manufacturer specifications. You can get front wheel alignment for cars with front wheel drive, or four wheel alignment. How often should ... read more

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When Should I call for a Tow instead of Driving my Car?

If your car breaks down or is in a more serious accident, you don’t really have much choice. But have you ever experienced car trouble and wondered whether or not your car was safe to drive? You are not alone. This could happen to anyone, at any time. Oftentimes if your car is showing signs of an issue, you can still operate it while you get to your preferred auto repair shop. Still though, it is better to be safe, and know the situations where driving might cause even more damage. Know your Vehicle One of the most important things you can do as a driver is pay attention to your car. Get familiar with how your car sounds, smells, and runs when it is in top shape. Give your car a quick once-over every week looking for signs of malfunction or damage. That way you are more likely to spot something wrong early, and avoid problems before they become more serious. And if you do notice something, don’t put it off. Call your mechanic right away and get your car in for any necessa ... read more

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Top 5 Reasons Your Check Engine Light Came On

It is important to get to know your dashboard lights. These indicators come on when there is problem, and they are not something you can ignore. Your car is trying to tell you something, and it can be frustrating and confusing. But if you do ignore it, you risk further damage to the car and might even put yourself at risk. Here are just a few of the most common reasons why your check engine light comes on: 1. Oxygen Sensor Needs Replacing This is the most common car repair for six years in a row, and is one of the most common reasons for the check engine light. The O2 sensor monitors unburned oxygen from the exhaust. It can fail because of neglected repairs, engine problems, or even using gas with a higher ethanol concentration. And because the sensor works with the on-board computer, a malfunction can cause as much as a 40% decrease in fuel economy. 2. Catalytic Converter Needs Replacement These are the second most common issues drivers face across the United Sta ... read more

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