Reducing Out of Pocket Auto Body Costs

Answering Common Questions About Transmission Issues

Posted by on May 5, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Answering Common Questions About Transmission Issues

Your car’s transmission is an essential part of the vehicle as it can allow the engine to efficiently change gears so that the car can travel at a range of speeds. However, it can be common for individuals to be relatively uninformed about the mechanical parts of their cars. If you have a limited understanding about your car’s transmission, the following questions and answers may help you to be prepared for some of the problems that your vehicle may experience.

How Can You Tell If Your Transmission Is Experiencing Issues?

Transmission problems can have an assortment of symptoms depending on the underlying issue. For example, if you smell a sweet chemical smell in your car’s cabin, this could be a sign of a transmission fluid leak. Another common sign can be jolting or shaking when the transmission changes gears. This issue can be caused by the internal gears being stripped, which will require them to be replaced. Often, transmission problems can be progressive, which means it is essential for you to have the issue repaired as soon as possible. By having a mechanic service your transmission when you notice strange smells or rough changing gears, you may be able to limit the damage and repair costs.

Why Would You Want Your Transmission Rebuilt?

In instances where the transmission has suffered extensive damage, it can be remarkably expensive to replace it with a new one. As a result, it can be common for mechanics to attempt to rebuild the old transmission. During the rebuilding process, the old transmission will be completely disassembled, and any damaged components will be replaced. The process of rebuilding a transmission can be rather lengthy, but it can cost only a fraction of what replacing the transmission would require.

How Can You Help Your Transmission Avoid Problems?

Unfortunately, it can be common for car owners to neglect to maintain their transmissions, and this can make them far more likely to suffer a range of problems. When the transmission is serviced, an experienced mechanic will check the fluid to see if it needs to be changed. Over time, the lubricant in the transmission can start to breakdown, which can dramatically increase the wear it experiences. In addition to checking the fluid, these professionals will also inspect the seals to make sure that they are not at risk of developing leaks. The exact frequency with which you will need to have your transmission serviced will vary based on the make and model of your automobile. However, this information can be readily found in your owner’s manual.

For more information on transmission repair, contact companies like Atomic Transmissions.

Learn A Few Things Mechanic Checks During A Vehicle Inspection

Posted by on May 4, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Learn A Few Things Mechanic Checks During A Vehicle Inspection

If you have noticed that the inspection on your car is going to expire in the near future, you need to schedule to have a mechanic do a new inspection as soon as possible. You have until the very last day of the month that is shown on the inspection sticker that is posted on your vehicle. When you take a vehicle to be inspected at an auto center, there are key areas that the mechanic checks to ensure that the vehicle works properly. If something is not working properly, you will have to have the issue fixed before your vehicle will pass its inspection. The guide below walks you through a few of the things the mechanic will check when he or she inspects your vehicle.

The Lights

The mechanic will check your headlights, brake lights, reverse lights, and blinkers to make sure that they all work properly. These lights are important because they alert other drivers about your car’s position on the road. If one or more of the lights are not working properly, bulbs may need to be replaced or fuses may be blown and need to be replaced.

The Tires

The mechanic will inspect the tires on the car to make sure that they have enough tread left on them. If you look at your tires and they have smooth spots on them, it means that your tires are worn and will more than likely need to be replaced. To keep your tires from wearing too quickly, rotate them every time you get your oil changed. Rotating them ensures that the tires wear down in different places so that they can last as long as possible.

The Brakes

The brakes on the vehicle will need to be inspected as well. If your brakes squeal or feel like they are grinding when you apply them, there is a good chance that they are worn and need to be replaced. Having brakes that work well is essential when driving because you never know when you will need to stop quickly.

When the mechanic finishes his or her inspection, they will let you know everything that is wrong with the vehicle, if anything is. The mechanic may allow you to set up a payment plan or purchase used parts at a salvage yard to cut down on costs, if you cannot afford the repairs in full on the day you get it inspected.

Top 4 Tips On Avoiding Car Breakdowns

Posted by on May 2, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Top 4 Tips On Avoiding Car Breakdowns

If you’re driving an older car or planning on a long road trip, the last thing you want is a breakdown. Getting stuck and calling towing services is stressful and expensive. What can you do to avoid a breakdown? Here are four ways to avoid being stranded on the side of the road:

1. Get your car serviced

The top way to avoid a breakdown is by getting your car serviced regularly. Preventative maintenance is key when it comes to making sure your car is in top shape. Get your oil changed, get the fluids flushed, and have the belts and hoses checked. Your car’s manufacturer will also provide a list of services and how often they need to be done.

2. Replace the battery

If your car’s battery is old, it can leave you stranded. When a battery goes bad, you may have trouble starting the car. Eventually, your car won’t start at all. If your battery is newer or you just replaced it, you need to know how to care for it to extend its life. Here are some tips:

  • Make sure all lights and electronics are off when you take your key out of the ignition
  • Have your spark plugs replaced regularly. Bad spark plugs reduce battery life.
  • Charge the battery before long drives.
  • Clean the cables and terminals every season.

3. Take care of your tires

A flat tire is a common cause of breakdowns. If you don’t treat your tires correctly, they may pop on a long drive or commute. Here are general tips on tire care:

  • Make sure your tires have proper pressure. You should check your pressure at least once a month.
  • Have your tires rotated every time you get an oil change. This allows for even wear, which extends tire life.
  • Avoid debris and pot holes. Even the smallest pot hole or sharp object can potentially damage a tire.
  • Get an alignment once a year.

4. Fuel your car right

Gas is the lifeblood of your car. Think of it like food. When you don’t eat right, you feel bad. So does your car. Feed your car right and it will be reliable. Here are guidelines:

  • Fuel up your car before the low gas light comes on. Keeping your car fueled reduces stress on parts.
  • In the winter when temperatures drop, don’t let your level go below half a tank to prevent fuel lines from freezing.
  • Use the fuel type your car’s manufacturer recommends. Depending on the car, the more expensive fuel can diminish performance and longevity.

These are four ways to ensure your car is reliable. Treat your car right and you won’t need a tow. If you do end up needing one, however, visit a site like http://www.dattagetowingandautorepair.com.

3 Advantages Of A Flatbed Pickup Truck

Posted by on Apr 29, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Advantages Of A Flatbed Pickup Truck

When you think of a pickup truck, you might generally think of a truck that has a regular, stock type of bed. However, some pickup trucks have been converted into flatbeds. If you have never thought about buying one of these vehicles, consider the benefits of a flatbed pickup truck. Depending on what you will use your truck for, you might find it to be a far better option than a “regular” pickup truck! 

1. Maintenance is Easier

Because the bed of the truck is flat, maintenance on it can be a whole lot easier. If you choose to paint your truck, you do not have to worry about the aggravation or cost of painting the flatbed — since it’s flat, it can be very easy to paint yourself. Cleaning your truck and spraying out the truck bed can also be a lot easier, since you don’t have to worry about debris getting hung up in the corners and crevices like it can with a traditional truck bed.

2. You Can Haul More

You do not have to worry about wasted space in a flatbed pickup truck like you do in a more traditional truck bed. This means that you can haul more, as long as you tie it down to make sure that it stays in place. If you use your truck for work or for getting things done around your property, this can be very convenient.

3. Loading is Easier

Loading things into the bed of a truck can be a hassle. Since the tailgate being down only provides a certain amount of space for you to load things, it can be tough to load larger or more awkwardly shaped items. With a flat bed truck, loading things can be really easy, and you don’t have to worry about the wheel bed or the nooks and crannies of the truck bed. When you have a lot of stuff to haul, being able to load everything more easily can make a big difference in how much work you have to do. If you use your truck for work-related purposes, it can make your job a whole lot easier when you have a flatbed.

As you can see, a flatbed pickup truck can be a much better choice for many people. If you are currently shopping around for a pickup truck, consider these perks of a flatbed (from an outlet such as Apex Transportation). Then, you might decide that it’s the right type of truck for you!

Tips For Choosing The Best Used Cars

Posted by on Apr 27, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips For Choosing The Best Used Cars

Are you in need of a different vehicle? Are you wary of the high payments that it can take to purchase a new car? Whether you’re looking for a first car for your child or a vehicle for yourself, it can be difficult to choose between all the different makes and models that are available. Before you sign any paperwork, here are some tips to make sure that you choose from among the best used cars available:

Check insurance rates: Many people purchase a car first, then get insurance afterwards. Unfortunately, this can lead to a surprisingly high insurance premium later on. The cost of insurance will depend not only on your personal driving history, but also on where you live and the make and model of the vehicle. If a vehicle is popular among auto thieves, the cost of insurance is obviously going to be higher than a vehicle with a low instance of getting stolen. As a result, if you’re wanting the possible insurance rates, the best used cars for someone who lives in California may be different than someone who lives in Iowa or Nebraska.

Check its accident history: Thanks to internet-connected smartphones, it’s easier than ever to check whether a car that you’re interested in has ever been in an accident. Before you go out shopping, get familiar with the apps and reporting services that are available for cars in your area. While many of the best used cars will include these types of reports already, you can use your phone to confirm that the vehicle that you’re interested in has the correct report associated with it. 

Get a second opinion: Even a completely honest mechanic can sometimes miss something when checking out a vehicle. Your local used car dealership might tell you that a particular car is in good running condition and will last you for years, only for you to find out after you purchase it that the transmission needs work. Once you’ve whittled down the list of best used cars to just a few prospective ones, have your favorite ones checked out by a trusted mechanic. This second pair of eyes may spot something that was previously overlooked, such as loose hoses or belts that need adjusting. If your mechanic finds nothing wrong with the vehicle, then you know you should put it on your list of cars that you actually want to purchase. To find out more, visit a website like http://www.starautomall.org/.

3 Signs You Need To Have Your Brakes Checked

Posted by on Apr 26, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Signs You Need To Have Your Brakes Checked

Brakes are one of the most important parts of your vehicle; they allow you to efficiently and near instantly control the speed of your car and avoid collisions as hazards appear on the road. However, brakes suffer from a great deal of wear and tear, as they are exposed to high degrees of heat and pressure while slowing down your car. Luckily, there are a number of clear warning signs that indicate when your brakes are degrading and need to be checked out. 

Loud Noises

If you notice that your brakes are squeaking or otherwise making some sort of noise when applied, this is a sign that your brake pads have started to degrade. Either rust has developed somewhere on the brake rotor, or the brake pad itself has been worn away to the point where the metal of your brakes is touching the moving metal of the tire, causing an unpleasant noise. Have your brakes checked immediately to determine the issue and have it fixed, as if left unchecked your brakes may be unable to properly respond in an urgent situation.

Soft Pedal

If the brake pedal is extremely soft when you press down on it and the effectiveness of your brakes is reduced, it is likely that there is a leak somewhere within your brake fluid system. You should check underneath your parked vehicle for any signs of a leak, or check the asphalt of your driveway. Brake fluid appears much like motor oil does, and should be easily visible if it has begun to leak out of your system. You’ll have to get your brakes looked at immediately. A leak in the brake lines is a serious problem that can only be fixed by a professional mechanic.

Pulling

If you notice that your car begins to pull to one side or the other when the brakes are applied, there is probably an issue with your brakes. The most common and easily fixed issue is a piece of foreign material stuck between the brake pad and the tire, but it is also possible that one brake pad is more worn than the other. If this is the case, both brake pads will likely have to be replaced, which is a fairly inexpensive procedure but one that is highly necessary, as reduced control of your vehicle, even while slowing down, is a serious matter that greatly increases the chances of a collision. 

If you think you may be in need of brake repairs, contact a company like Lakeside Radiator & Auto Repair as soon as possible.

Recreational Resources: Must-Have Accessories For Your New RV

Posted by on Apr 26, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Recreational Resources: Must-Have Accessories For Your New RV

Traveling throughout the country in your new recreational vehicle is an ideal way to explore and relax. To make the most of each trip, you need to make sure your RV is equipped with the right accessories. If this is your first time traveling in an RV, you may feel overwhelmed about what to buy. Below you will find lists of must-have accessories. Explore these lists to find items that will make your trips more convenient.

Accessories For The Kitchen

  • Induction Cooktop – A portable induction cooktop allows you to create your favorite meals with ease. These cooktops are compact in design, so they are perfect for recreational vehicles.

  • High-Quality Cookware – Choosing cookware to bring on the road can be difficult as space is usually limited. Invest in nonstick cookware or stainless steel pots, pans, silverware, and cooking utensils. These items are durable, easy to clean, and allow you to cook a large variety of meals.

  • RV Trash Bin – An RV trash bin is designed to reduce odors and keep critters away. These trash bins are wall-mounted and have an outer layer of thick fabric. You can use regular trash can liners, and many of these bins are collapsible for easy storage.

Accessories For Bedrooms And Bathrooms

  • Portable Waste Tank – A compact waste tank is essential for comfortable travel in your RV. These tanks often feature spill-proof caps, wheels, and tow handles for easy removal and waste disposal.

  • Bedlift Kit – Your bed will typically take up a large portion of your bedroom in an RV. With a bedlift kit, you can easily use the space beneath your bed for storage. These kits typically feature hydraulic lifts for secure and safe lifting.

  • Wall Mount Storage – Use wall-mounted storage devices to give your RV a spacious feel. Some popular wall-mounted accessories include racks, shelves, cabinets, and TV mounts.

Accessories For Indoor And Outdoor Comfort

  • Furniture – From sleeper sofas to outdoor lawn chairs, furniture keeps you comfortable in your RV. There are many retailers that offer compact and quality furniture that is specifically designed to fit into recreational vehicles and campers.

  • Outdoor Awnings – Sitting outside of your RV and enjoying the scenery is a great way to spend your time. To make the most of it, invest in an outdoor awning with a sun shade. These shades reduce light, glare, and heat so you can relax without worrying about sun exposure.

Additional Information For New RV Owners

To get additional suggestions about RV accessories, ask an RV dealer like Orangewood RV Center for ideas and recommendations. These dealers are experienced in selling recreational vehicles of all shapes and sizes. They also tend to be familiar with the most popular and modern travel accessories.

3 Things To Consider When Parting Out A Vehicle

Posted by on Apr 25, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Things To Consider When Parting Out A Vehicle

For those with old cars that are not worth repair, the question often becomes what to do with it. Often, these cars are worth very little and too costly to fix, so they stay in the driveway as an eyesore for all to see. Fortunately, there is an option for those who are mechanically inclined. Parting out the vehicle for sale can bring in some pretty significant money on something that is otherwise garbage cluttering up the property. For those who are not familiar with car parts, partnering with a mechanic may be an option. There are some things to be aware of before parting out an old vehicle for the first time:

Develop A Sales Method

After making the decision to sell parts of the vehicle, it then becomes necessary to decide on how to sell them. There are many options to choose from, or consider many options to get the most money out of the project. One option is to sell them locally. Advertise in the local newspaper or on local social media sites dedicated to local sales.

Selling online is another popular option. This allows for a greater customer base and different price points since some areas are willing to spend more on certain items than others. There are plenty of communities on the Internet solely dedicated to buying and selling used parts.

Only Remove Parts As They Sell

One major mistake that some make when parting out cars is taking it entirely apart. Only remove pieces as they are sold to a buyer. Leaving them intact until sale can prevent an unorganized disaster that can have significant negative effects on the entire venture. If it is taken completely apart, the problem then becomes where to store everything, including the hardware that keeps certain pieces together. Leaving all of the parts secure is the best way to prevent losing parts that can potentially bring in a lot of money.

Research Shipping Options

If selling online is going to be the primary sales method, it is crucial to research all shipping options. Not doing so can significantly eat into the profits of the project. The buyer should be paying for all of the shipping, so know ahead of time what it will cost.

Also ensure that the proper shipping containers are used. Pack the pieces carefully so they do not become damaged, or the sale can be lost along with the damaged item. Glass or fragile plastic may need to be shipped inside two or more boxes with layers of packing material to keep them safe. Also consider insuring the boxes in the event they become damaged in transit.

Parting out old cars can be a fun project, but it can be overwhelming for those who are not sure of what they are doing. It is always best to have someone who is experienced to assist with the process, and then split the profits with them. Contact a business, such as Godfrey Brake Service & Supply, for more information.   

What Are The Most Common Causes Of Coolant Leaks?

Posted by on Apr 25, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What Are The Most Common Causes Of Coolant Leaks?

If you notice a small puddle of fluid under your vehicle that is pinkish in color and has a slightly sweet smell, it’s likely to be coolant. The smell is the same one that you may encounter inside a large indoor parking garage, where multiple vehicles leak this vital fluid that is essential for cooling your vehicle’s engine.

While it is not a cause for concern to see an occasional release of coolant on a hot day in the middle of summer, frequent occurrences and lowered coolant levels may indicate a more serious problem.

Coolant is designed both to resist freezing in the cold of winter and boiling in the summer heat, while keeping your engine from overheating.

However, it does expand when it gets hot, and creates pressure in the components that are designed to keep it contained. This pressure may result in failure of one or more areas of containment and a coolant leak.

The overflow tank

This device is designed to alleviate the pressure that’s created by coolant expansion. A hose is extended from the radiator, which stores the coolant, to the plastic see-through overflow tank. The level of fluid in this tank raises and lowers according to the temperature of the coolant, allowing extra space for the expansion. There are occasions when the overflow tank may become too full, such as when a vehicle’e air conditioning is running nonstop on a very hot day. 

The excess heat cannot be dissipated quickly enough, and a small amount of coolant may spill onto the ground under the general area of the overflow tank.You may see it dripping down as you exit your vehicle. This is not a cause for alarm, but you should keep an eye on the coolant level in the overflow tank in the summer months. The level should be between the “low” and “full” lines that are visible on the side of the tank. You must only add the type of coolant that is recommended for your vehicle. 

Never attempt to add coolant when the vehicle is hot, or you may face serious burns.

Potentially serious causes of coolant leaks

While a slight leak from the overflow tank is not an issue, leaks from other sources may potentially cause a breakdown or serious damage to your vehicle.

Hoses

The hoses that carry coolant to your water pump and engine may become weakened by age or extreme temperatures. This may be cause slight leaks to occur, especially around the metal clamps that hold them in place.

If you see a puddles of coolant that are under the engine area of the vehicle, nearer to the center than the overflow tank, you may have a hose leak. If you can spot a leak, or can see any other weak point in a hose, such as a bubble, you should get both hoses replaced to be safe.

Water pump

If you vehicle is leaking from the water pump itself, prepare for an expensive repair, because replacing a water pump is very labor intensive. You may choose to have the timing belt replaced at the same time, because it is economical to do so when replacing the water pump.

Gaskets

Coolant leaks in engine head gaskets won’t be visible as puddles, but rather as a drop in coolant level and white exhaust smoke, as coolant mixes with engine oil. As with a water pump replacement, the part itself is not expensive, but the labor cost is substantial. Contact a business, such as the Gwizz Auto Group, for more information. 

A Guide To Buying Heavy Duty Truck Parts

Posted by on Apr 23, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on A Guide To Buying Heavy Duty Truck Parts

In order to maximize on the care of your heavy duty truck, you will need to be diligent about the way that you handle the maintenance. This will require you to reach out to parts professionals who can sell you any sort of part that you need. However, you will need to do your homework in this regard and make sure that you understand what to look for and how to help yourself out during the shopping process. Follow these points and use them to your advantage in order to purchase the best heavy duty truck parts that you can get your hands on. 

Be Sure Of The Part Number

You need to use the parts number to be sure that you are buying the exact fit for your truck. Also make sure that you bring the VIN for your truck, so that your parts professional, like King George Truck & Tire Center, can match the make and model of your vehicle in order to match you with the exact fit that you need. Doing this will help you to avoid mistakingly buying the wrong part for your truck. 

Consider Visiting A Salvage Yard

When you want to get heavy duty truck parts that are inexpensive, one way to go about it is with a visit to a salvage yard. This will allow you to get your hands on used parts without paying an arm and a leg. These vehicle parts will fit your heavy duty truck and will allow you to fix it at a fraction of the cost. 

Bring A Photo Of The Part That You Need, Or The Part Itself

To really make sure that you don’t buy the wrong part, you should take a picture of the part and bring it with you when you shop. Better yet, you can bring in the part itself if possible, to be certain that you are not purchasing one that will not work in your vehicle. This will help you avoid getting confused with parts that look similar. 

Purchase Aftermarket Parts To Save Money

Quality is of the utmost importance when looking for replacement parts for your heavy duty truck. With this in mind, you should focus on buying aftermarket parts. Doing this will let you buy a brand that is high quality, but at a lower price. You’ll also get quicker access to it since it’s through a third party manufacturer. 

Keep these tips in mind in order to buy the exact part that you need.