Extreme weather throughout the midwest and Northern states means rough roads this spring and summer. Cracks and pits can lead to expensive problems in your vehicle's steering and suspension system.
Unfortunately, steering and suspension issues can go unnoticed until they require a visit to the auto shop.
Everyone feels the pain of high gas prices, especially if you commute or drive for a living. Are there simple ways to save some money at the pump?
Absolutely, says Dr. David Greene of the National Center for Transportation Research, a federal agency operating out of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
You are driving with a trunkful of groceries and children in the back seat. Just two blocks from home and you notice the “check engine” light glowing on your instrument panel. What should you do?
“If the light comes on at all, you should have the vehicle looked at within fourteen days,” said Tony Molla, vice president of communications at ASE. “As soon as possible is always best.”
Drive your vehicle to the mountains for a ski weekend and you may get a rude surprise if you park outside overnight.
When you turn the key, the only sound you may hear is a “click click” indicating a nearly dead battery. Cold weather marks the beginning of "jump start" season as vehicle batteries struggle to start frigid engines.
Severe weather storms such as the heavy rains in Northern California or Hurricane Sandy on the East Coast create special problems for all vehicles.
What should vehicle owners do once the storm is over?
“The first thing you should do is walk around your vehicle and inspect it for any obvious damage,” said Tony Molla, Vice President of Communications for the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). “Obvious damage would be broken lights, cracked lenses, mostly damage on the body of your vehicle.”
Autumn rains can turn familiar routes into an oily racetrack. How can you help prevent your vehicle from slip-sliding along fall and winter roadways?
Tires are your vehicle’s first line of defense against dicey road conditions. Quality tires that are properly maintained can help prevent accidents and improve driving performance.
Dirt and other pollutants from summer driving can turn clean clear oil into dark and viscous fluid. The contaminants increase wear and tear on your vehicle, and service advisors often recommend an oil change in early fall.
Is a simple oil change service the only item that needs to be on your fall maintenance checklist?
An acquaintance loves high-performance vehicles. He has owned several. He babies them gently. He drives them hard too, but only occasionally and only on official road tracks.
After each race, his crew checks the undercarriage and the steering. They examine the tires. They change the motor oil. Then they lift the car onto stands so its high-performance tires are off the ground to prevent flat spots from developing.
Summer vacations are over and the children are back in school. Your car has logged several thousand miles, hit some potholes and encountered a few flying pebbles along the way. Is a late-summer check-up needed?
Summer driving can create lingering problems for your vehicle‘s engine, tires, windshields and paint. Adjustments or repairs can fix minor nuisances before they become major problems. You also may want to prepare for the coming rains and snow.
Curbs, speed bumps, cracked pavement, construction zones and potholes encountered on summer vacations can knock a vehicle out of alignment.
The result: Problems in steering and suspension systems.