We often get the same auto repair related questions asked hundreds of times by different customers; and the reason is because they are good questions to ask! We thought it would be helpful to answer some of the most frequently asked questions that come through our doors here. If you have a specific question that isn’t addressed here, please feel free to contact us today.
What does it mean if my “check engine” or “service engine soon” light comes on?
There are many sensors and computerized components that manage your vehicle’s engine performance and emissions. When one of these fails, the “check engine” light is illuminated. Although your car may seem to run fine, it is important to have the issue addressed to prevent long-term problems.
How often should I change my spark plugs?
Most new car manufactures recommend spark replacement at 100k miles. Our opinion is that between 50k – 75k miles is a better interval. The spark electrodes wear out before the higher mileage, and this can cause wear on other parts–we frequently see coils needing replacement on engines with high mileage plugs. Another factor to consider is spark plugs frozen in the plug holes; often these plugs break when replaced. (some of the newer Ford engine spark plugs are being replaced at 25,000 miles!) Now you might wonder: Do we make extra bucks peddling more frequent spark replacement? No. We make some extra bucks replacing coils on cars that exceed our recommended 50k-75k replacement interval. But we’d much rather do needed than preventable repairs.
Should I consider using synthetic motor oil in my vehicle?
Synthetic motor oils can be a good choice for high output, turbo charged or supercharged engines. Or for vehicles that are used for towing (especially during hot weather), and vehicles that operate in extremely cold or hot climates. Although more expensive than mineral-based oils, synthetic motor oils can improve fuel economy and provide longer intervals between changes.
I need to replace a burned out fuse, what should I do?
Always replace burned-out fuses with ones of the same amperage (printed on the fuse) and note that if a fuse continues to “blow,” you should have the circuit checked professionally by one of our technicians for defects.
What should I do if my car starts to overheat?
This is a very serious problem – if your car overheats for too long, you can damage your engine. As soon as possible, find a safe place to pull off the road and shut the engine off! Do not attempt to check the fluid level in the radiator; the hot fluid can cause severe burns. The best thing to do is have your car towed to Alltech Automotive.
Is it really necessary to replace my timing belt at the recommended interval?
YES. The failure of a timing belt in many cars can result in major engine damage. The cost of repairing an engine with a broken timing belt is much greater than the cost of a timing belt replacement.
Will bringing my car to you void my dealership warranty?
No! The federal government passed the Magnason-Moss Act in 1975 prohibiting new car dealers from implying or denying warranty service because routine scheduled maintenance was performed at an independent repair facility.
Are There Any Special Signs I Should Look For When Purchasing A Used Car?
Have the vehicle inspected. If you do not have a car inspected by a professional you are making a big mistake. Many people sell a used vehicle because they are putting off and expensive repair. The cost is very minor and we always give a buyer more ammunition for bringing the price down. Money spent on inspecting a used car is well spent.
What is the difference between factory new, aftermarket new, remanufactured, and used parts?
All four categories have a purpose in making repairs and will be selected according to availability, vehicle specifics and your personal needs. We make a careful evaluation of the cost, availability and life expectancy of the vehicle before making a part recommendation. A factory new part is one manufactured by the company that produced the vehicle. An aftermarket new part is manufactured by a source other than the original factory. A remanufactured part was previously used and is reconditioned to meet or exceed original specifications. A used part has been obtained from a salvage yard.
Do you work with aftermarket warranty companies?
Yes, we do. We will read your policy over and advise you of the procedures. We will contact the company to get authorization and payment information. We know you have enough to worry about with your vehicle problems, you don’t need to deal with any more stress.