Farmington Auto Repair



Proper inflation is the single most important part of tire care. Check or adjust inflation every few months and always use the inflation recommended by the vehicle manufacturer. Checking air pressure should be standard procedure on any routine visit to your vehicle service center for oil services, tire rotations, or general maintenance and repair. For do-it-yourselfers you can find this information in your owner’s manual, posted on the edge of the driver’s door, on a door post, in the center console, or on the inside of the glovebox door. Be sure to check inflation when tires are COLD: when the vehicle has been driven less than a mile or one hour or more after driving. Use a good quality tire gauge. And don’t forget to check the spare!


The main purpose of regularly rotating tires is to achieve more uniform wear for all tires on the vehicle. It is recommended that you rotate your tires at least every 6,000 to 8,000 miles or uneven wear may develop. At strongly tire-oriented facilities this is a service typically done at no additional cost; along with free flat repairs, Nitrogen inflation, and an undercar inspection.


Many parts on your vehicle are interrelated. Ignoring maintenance can lead to trouble: specific parts, or an entire system, can fail. Neglecting even simple routine maintenance, such as changing the oil or checking the coolant, can lead to poor fuel economy, unreliability, or costly breakdowns. It also may invalidate your warranty. Properly maintaining your vehicle is less expensive than repairs from negligence.


In the traditional sense there is no such thing as a tune-up anymore. Carburetors and distributors with their myriad of parts destined to failure have been replaced with electronic injectors and electronic ignition systems. There is virtually little to wear out. Aging Ignition wires and spark plugs may continue to function for 100,000 miles but not optimally. The car manufacturer’s boastful claim of 100,000 between tune-ups has little grounding in common sense, and is mostly a marketing ploy. At the price of gasoline these days even a three percent decrease in fuel efficiency is expensive, not to mention ecologically unfriendly. A fresh set of spark plugs any time over 50,000 miles will normally make a noticeable difference.


The smell of burned toast – a light, sharp odor – often signals an electrical short and burning insulation. To be safe, try not to drive the vehicle until the problem is diagnosed. • The smell of rotten eggs – a continuous burning-sulfur smell – usually indicates a problem in the catalytic converter or other emission control devices. Don’t delay diagnosis and repair. • A thick acrid odor usually means burning oil. Look for sign of a leak. • The smell of gasoline vapors after a failed start may mean you have flooded the engine. Wait a few minutes before trying again. If the odor persists, chances are there’s a leak in the fuel system – a potentially dangerous problem that needs immediate attention. • Burring resin or an acrid chemical odor may signal overheated brakes or clutch. Check the parking brake. Stop and allow the brakes to cool after repeated hard braking on mountain roads. Light smoke coming from a wheel indicates a stuck brake. The vehicle should be towed for repair. A sweet, steamy odor indicates a coolant leak. If the temperature gauge or warning light does not indicate overheating, drive carefully to the nearest service station, keeping an eye on your gauges. If the odor is accompanied by a hot, metallic scent and steam-from under the hood, your engine has overheated. Pull over immediately. Continued driving could cause severe engine damage. The vehicle should be towed for repair.


Squeaks, squeals, rattles, rumbles, and other sounds provide valuable clues about problems and maintenance needs. Here are some common noises and their definitions. Squeal – A shrill, sharp noise, usually related to engine speed. Click – A slight sharp noise, related to either engine speed or vehicle speed. Screech – A high-pitched, piercing metallic sound; usually occurs while the vehicle is in motion. Rumble – a low-pitched rhythmic sound. Ping – A high-pitched metallic tapping sound, related to engine speed. Heavy Knock – A rhythmic pounding sound.. Clunk – A random thumping sound. The more details you can provide us, the better chance of locating the problem quickly. Does the noise occur when the engine is cold or warm? Hot or cold outside, rainy or dry? Does the noise occur while driving or only when parked? These clues help the technician diagnose your problems faster, saving you time and money!


Most car manufacturers say to change your oil every 7,500 miles unless you drive in severe conditions. Severe conditions are defined as dirty or dusty roads, extremely hot or cold climates, a lot of stop and go driving, taking long trips or if you tow a trailer. If you answer yes to any of the severe driving conditions, your vehicle falls into the severe conditions category, or the 3,000 mile oil change interval.


Check Tire Pressure – If one tire is 5 psi low on pressure, you will lose 10% in fuel mileage. Make sure all tires are inflated to the vehicle manufacture’s specified pressure. Wheel Alignment – Your car’s wheels and tires were designed to roll. If the alignment is not correct they drag, causing a decrease in fuel mileage as well as premature tire wear. Fuel mileage loss can be as much as 15%. Check and Replace Filters Regularly – Replacing a plugged air filter can improve your car’s gas mileage by as much as 10%. Your car’s air filter keeps impurities from damaging the inside of your engine. Not only will replacing the air filter improve your gas mileage, it will protect your engine too. Change Your Oil Regularly – The proper grade of clean oil will reduce friction. Using too heavy of oil can cause a loss of 1 to 2% in fuel mileage. Regular oil changes will not only protect your engine, but also save you money at the pump. Keep Your Engine Properly Tuned – Worn spark plugs, dirty fuel injectors, and carbon on the throttle place can all cause a fuel mileage loss of up to 4%. With today’s cars, computers can mask worn or dirty parts that rob your car of fuel mileage. By having these items inspected and serviced regularly, you will keep your car running smooth and improve your vehicle’s fuel economy. Take a Load Off – Heavier vehicles require more energy to move, so carrying around excess weight will decrease your mileage. Empty out your trunk of unnecessary items. An extra 100 pounds in your trunk will reduce fuel mileage by 1 to 2% in a typical vehicle. Service Engine Soon / Check Engine Light If you have been ignoring this important light, have it repaired. This light monitors important functions of the fuel and engine system. Depending on the cause, fuel economy could suffer by 40%. Often time when the light is on, the computer operates in a back up mode which does not optimize fuel mileage. Observe the Speed Limit

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