Wednesday, January 17, 2018

WHAT THE AUTO ANALYST CUSTOMERS SHOULD KNOW

Thursday, December 28, 2017

HOW'S THE RIDE??

Here are a few symptoms of failing shocks and struts you can feel and hear:

  1. The Vehicle Bounces - when shocks and struts are stuck, damaged or loose, the tires can lose contact with the road as the vehicle is driven, resulting in a bumpy, uncomfortable ride.  Your vehicle's shocks and struts help control the movement of the springs so that the wheels don't move up and down excessively.
  2. The Front End Dives and/or the Rear Squats - Shocks and struts help keep the vehicle stable during acceleration and braking.  When a vehicle's shocks and struts are damaged, the front end can dive upon braking while the rear end squats during acceleration.  This happens when these components aren't strong enough to handle the weight of the vehicle.  New shocks and struts not only makes your ride smother, but can also make a vehicle corner and brake like when it was new.  They also can give extra stopping distance, better control, and more confidence in emergency situations.
  3. The Vehicle Exhibits Signs of Body Roll - Does it feel like your vehicle is leaning into a turn, even on slight turns?  Over 50,000 miles, the dampening capabilities of a shock or strut will degrade to the point where it can impact ride and handling.  This can be a safety issue that requires immediate action since it can impact braking and steering effectiveness.
  4. You Hear Unusual Noises - As shocks and bushings wear, they lose their ability to properly support the strut.  The result is that the strut can bottom out.  When the  strut bottoms out, the metal-to-metal contact can cause a knocking sound that emanates from the front or rear wheels.  Irregular tire wear such as cupping or scalloping, can be another cause of suspension related noise.
If you have experiencing any of the above symptoms please contact The Auto Analyst, your local one stop auto repair facility, by calling (530) 621-4591 or visit our website www.theautoanalyst.com.

 

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

WINTER BATTERY SERVICE

Lead-acid batteries have an average service life of roughly three to five years depending on the climate while some other batteries may last a few years longer, both are prone to failure as the temperature dips.  The only way to spot a weak battery is by testing it.

How old is the battery in your vehicle?  When was it last tested?  Don't be caught with a dead battery, contact The Auto Analyst, your one stop auto repair facility, today to schedule a battery test.  Please call (530) 621-4591 or schedule online at www.theautoanalyst.com.


Thursday, December 7, 2017

3 REASONS TO REPLACE CABIN AIR FILTERS IN WINTER

There are three major reasons to replace a cabin air filter in the Winter:


  1. Increased particulate Emissions - as cars idle on cold winter mornings, the exhaust can pump out damaging emissions that are harmful to drivers' respiratory systems.  The most damaging component of tailpipe emissions are particulates.  Vehicle emission particulates range in size from 2 microns to 10 microns in diameter, and can aggravate the lungs when inhaled.  The one thing that can stop exhaust particulates from reaching vehicle occupants is a cabin air filter.
  2. Defroster performance - In the winter, clogged cabin air filter can restrict defroster performance, making it harder to see out of the windshield.  If a cabin air filter is clogged, it will create a restriction that will decrease the amount of hot air the blower can deliver to the windshield, which diminishes visibility and adds time that it takes to defrost the window.
  3. Summer and Fall can be brutal on cabin air filters - Following months of battling heavy pollen, dust, leaves, bugs and other debris, winter is the perfect time to give a your vehicle a fresh cabin air filter.
When was the last time your vehicle's cabin air filter changed?  Give us a call and we can check our records and if needed get you an appointment scheduled, (530) 621-4591.

The Auto Analyst, your local one stop auto repair shop.  Visit our website www.theautoanalyst.com to schedule an appointment today.


Thursday, November 30, 2017

WE DON'T MAKE THE LAWS

The last few months we have had many clients come in for State Brake and Lamp inspections because their insurance has totaled their vehicle after being in an accident.  Lately, even the smallest of fender benders vehicles are being totaled.  The insurance companies give the owners a buy back option and what looks like a "great deal".  Once you buy back your vehicle you will need to register it as "salvaged".  In order to do this you must have a smog inspection, state brake inspection, and a state lamp inspection.  In order to pass the state brake and lamp inspections your vehicle MUST pass 100% and most don't.  We have had many upset clients because their vehicle has failed for one reason or another.  I just want to remind everyone that we, The Auto Analyst, DO NOT make the laws!!  When we become certified to perform these inspections we are required to follow the testing procedures that have been determined by the State of California.  I urge all of you who have been given the option of buying back your totaled vehicle to do a little research BEFORE opting to take the deal.

If you have failed any of the tests, before pointing the finger of blame at us write or call the Bureau of Automotive Repair to voice your concerns.  Remember we did not make the laws we have to follow them or pay the extensive fines.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

THE IMPORTANCE OF COOLING SYSTEM SERVICE

We are always asked if it's really necessary to perform a coolant flush.  So I want to educate you on exactly what the cooling system does.  Engine coolant, some may know it a antifreeze, runs through your engine's cooling system.  The water pump moves the fluid from the radiator to the engine and back again.  The primary job of the coolant is to transfer excess heat from the engine to the radiator.  The radiator's job is to allow cooler air to bring down the temperature of the coolant.  Pure water is the best fluid for transferring heat, however at 190 degrees Fahrenheit, water is extremely corrosive to the inside of your engine.  For this reason it's mixed 50/50 with antifreeze, or coolant which contains anti-corrosion additives.  If coolant is not mixed with water, your engine can run hotter than normal.  Coolant also has anti-cavitation additives to prevent cavitation around the water pump impeller.

The interesting thing about these chemical additives is that they wear out over time, much the way prescription drugs lose their potency and effectiveness over time, hence the discard date on pill containers.  We want to flush coolant before the anti-corrosion additives lose their effectiveness.

Another consideration is that the current the engine starter uses returns to the battery negative terminal by running from the starter through the block to where the big black cable is attached, and then back to the battery negative terminal.  This process can build up a slight charge in the engine coolant over a long period of time, resulting in a condition called electrolysis.  Electrolysis will cause metal to come off the inside of your engine and be deposited in the radiator and heater core, which explains why we sometimes find that a failed radiator we take out is significantly heavier than the new one we install.  The same holds true for heater cores, which can be very difficult to access and replace.

So the answer to the coolant flush questions is a definite YES.  We want to flush out the coolant and replace it with new before it is visibly bad, due to additive depletion and the possibility of electrolysis.  The usual time frame is two years or 30,000 miles for standard coolant, however some cars have extended life coolant that can go longer.  The bottom line is that flushing and keeping the coolant fresh is always less expensive than repairing a heater core or radiator, head gasket or engine rebuild/replacement.

Don't wait until it's too late, flush your vehicle's cooling system today.  Give The Auto Analyst, your one stop auto repair shop, a call today at (530) 621-4591 or visit our website at www.theautoanalyst.com to schedule an appointment.



Thursday, November 9, 2017

RAIN IS A GOOD THING...EXCEPT FOR DRIVING

Driving in the first rain of the season can be downright dangerous.  Why you ask?  Rain mixes with oil from motor vehicles and oil from new asphalt.  The result is a slipper roadway.  And only if it rains hard enough and long enough, does the rain wash off the oil and the slippery conditions are reduced.  the rain also makes it difficult to see.

Give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination when it is rainy outside.  Never rush when it's raining heavily: accidents are even more likely when weather conditions are poor.

Be more cautious with braking.  When you're driving in a downpour, you simply cannot brake late the way you can in ideal weather conditions.  The roads are slippery, which means you could slide more if you brake too quickly.  There's also a chance that you could get water in your brakes, which will cause them to lose their stopping power.  You want to avoid slamming on your brakes - when it's raining, you should brake with less force.  So be sure to keep plenty of distance between you and the car in front of you to avoid any of these situations.

Remember it is a law that you must have your headlights on when using your windshield wipers.  However, contrary to what you may think, using your high-beam headlights will actually make things worse: the light from the beams will reflect back at you off the water in the air, actually making it harder for you to see.

Do not use cruise control.  While you may think having your car travel at a set speed when it's raining is a good idea, cruise control can actually become problematic when it's raining.  If your car hydroplanes while you have your cruise control set, your car can actually accelerate - which is not something you want to happen when you are hydroplaning.  Having your foot away from the pedals can also be hazardous when you are driving in torrential rain.

Make sure your wipers and all lights are in good working condition before the rain starts.  Also, now is a good time to make sure your tires do not need replacing.  If you have any questions regarding your vehicle's readiness for the rainy season please call The Auto Analyst, your one stop auto repair shop at (530) 621-4591 or visit our website at www.theautoanalyst.com.  Your safety is our #1 concern!