Do You Have a Blown Head Gasket?

Have you ever heard of someone’s engine blowing a head gasket? They never sound happy about it! A blown head gasket is a big problem — and an expensive repair. To understand why a broken head gasket could be such an issue, let's first discuss about what they do and why they are essential for your vehicle. Head Gaskets 101 The head gasket in your vehicle’s engine, retains the gases that are combusting between the engine head/s and the engine block deck. As your engine works, combustion makes power and head gasket/s prevents liquids (like coolant and oil) from getting into the engine’s combustion chambers. Head gaskets act as barriers between the engine head/s and the engine deck. It keeps everything where it's supposed to be without any crossover or contamination that could cause damage to your vehicle's engine components. However, the head gasket/s can wear over time, significantly weakening the part. Blown head gaskets can happen when an engine severely overheats due to a faulty thermostat, clogged radiator, [...]

By |2022-05-16T13:30:15-06:00May 16th, 2022|Car Tips & Damaged Car|0 Comments

Keeping it Cool – Tips for Cooling Off While Driving

No one wants to stay in a hot car, and those living in Texas tend to get extra hot. A vehicle with a working A/C is almost a requirement for Texans. However, that doesn't mean your vehicle is cooperating. When the A/C system isn’t working properly, there are many things that can cause that condition. The most common causes are a leaking system and/or a faulty a/c compressor, followed by a faulty expansion valve or leaking line/hose and a leaking condenser. There are other causes, but those are the most common. When it gets really hot, it can take a while for your vehicle to cool off. And it can seem like it takes an eternity. Tips for Keeping it Cool Turn on the Fan Before the A/C After starting the car, the next thing you should do is, switch on the fan and roll down your windows for a couple of minutes. This allows the hot interior air to exit your vehicle before turning on the [...]

Car Parts 101 – Car Chassis

We talk a lot about the inner workings of your vehicle's engine and drivetrain. We've gone over the various parts and components required to run your engine. And we have passed along a few helpful tips to help you care for and keep your car on the road. But today, we are going to talk about the foundation for your vehicle — the car chassis. What is the Car Chassis? With upwards of 30,000 parts and pieces making up your vehicle, none of that would be possible without the chassis. The chassis is a combination of many parts that act as the car's platform. They include names you may already know: The Frame Suspension Components - struts, shocks, springs, and control arms Transmission & Drive Shaft Axles Steering Gear Controls Tie Rods & other steering components But, when most folks hear "chassis," they think about the frame. Initially, cars were built on a body-on-frame construction. After the chassis was built, the vehicle's body would be fitted on top and [...]

By |2022-04-21T09:54:09-06:00April 21st, 2022|Car Parts|0 Comments

Is it the Battery, Starter, or Alternator?

When you've got places to be, but a car that won't budge, it leads to some strong feelings of frustration — and confusion! Your next question is probably, "is it the battery, starter, or alternator?" With all three having the ability to cause your engine not to start, 1/3 isn't seeming like good odds anymore. A little knowledge can go a long way in helping you diagnose the issue (and how much effort it will be to get your car going again). Car Parts 101 - The Battery, The Starter, and The Alternator While the three parts work in tandem to get your car moving, they all have separate (but equally important) roles. Car Battery Your vehicle's battery is the first spark that ignites the engine into action. Once the ignition switch is engaged (either by turning the key or pressing the start button), the battery sends voltage to the starter to help it get the gears turning. It also lets you crank the tunes without having your car [...]

Responsibilities of Car Ownership

Owning a vehicle is part of the American way. Especially for those living in the suburbs and rural areas in Texas, a car gets you where you need to go on your schedule. And for many folks, driving starts promptly at 15 with your learner's permit as a right of passage. But many drivers forget about the responsibilities of car ownership. From having your financials in order and taking driving seriously, owning and driving a vehicle isn't something to be taken lightly. Financial Responsibilities of Car Ownership Purchasing a car (new or used) takes money. And the financials don't stop there. Yearly, you'll need to register your vehicle. Texas requires your state registration fee, local registration fee, and inspection costs. For a typical passenger car or truck, expect to spend around $80 per year. You will also need to keep your car insurance current. The cost of insurance varies depending on your age, vehicle, and driving history, The average cost of car insurance in Texas is around $150 per [...]

By |2022-03-23T12:14:06-06:00March 23rd, 2022|Auto Care, Car Tips|0 Comments

The Road’s Stickiest Problems

We talk a lot about protecting your car from wear and tear and early damage. But, that's mostly centered around your car's engine and components. Today, we'd like to talk about some of the road's stickiest problems. While contaminants on your car's paint certainly dull the shine, we don't often think about what else road remnants are doing to your vehicle. Beyond keeping your vehicle looking like new, keeping your car clean can also help keep it on the road. Avoiding the Road's Stickiest Problems You can't avoid road grime; it's a fact of life for any driver. But that doesn't mean you should let it go unchecked. Bugs, Bugs, and More Bugs "Bet he doesn't have the guts to do that again!" It's a saying most of us have either heard or said while on a road trip or commute. With so many bugs flying around Texas, you've noticed the build-up on your grill and windshield. And those tiny bugs can cause some issues. If left on your [...]

I Put the Wrong Fuel in My Car – Now What?

We've gone over the different fuel types in previous articles. Whether from not knowing any better or an accident, putting the wrong fuel into your vehicle can cause some issues. If you mitigate this mistake quickly enough, you can minimize the damage. Put the Wrong Fuel in Your Car? Here's What to Do. The first step: quit driving and look up what you need to do (see below). The less fuel that is entered into your system, the better. From there, here's what you need to do to know about the wrong gas types. Gas in Diesel Vehicles Diesel and Gas are very different fuel types. Diesel fuel is thicker and acts as a lubricant. Thinner gasoline fuel causes wear to the fuel pump, injectors, and filters. This wear can happen quickly. Immediately halt your travels and call a tow truck for a ride to your local automotive shop, where they can drain the tank and fuel lines and fuel filter/s. Diesel in Gas Fueled Cars While engine damage [...]

By |2022-02-18T11:42:17-06:00February 18th, 2022|Car Questions, Damaged Car|0 Comments

The High Cost of Car Technology

Gone are the days of the most prominent technology in the car being the ability to roll down the windows. These days, cars are jam-packed with the latest in car technology advances. And it's not just for your entertainment or to enjoy a hands-free conversation on your commutes; driving functions also rely on computers and information systems. When it comes to these technological advances, we all pay for them. New cars are only getting more expensive. And with recent advancements and added-on technologies, it leads to more repairs. Those repairs can be just as costly. And with so many supply-chain issues, getting the necessary replacement parts to repair those pieces of car technology could take some time. Most Common Car Technology Repairs When it comes to vehicle technology, there is a trend. A trend of common technology repairs that we see in our shop include: Backup Camera Blind Spot Sensors Lane Assistance Bluetooth Navigation Audio Systems Performance Sensors With so many new features, it's important to do what you [...]

By |2022-02-10T14:30:29-06:00February 10th, 2022|Car Parts|0 Comments

Diesel vs. Gasoline

We all know that gasoline and diesel fuels are different. We know not to put diesel into a gas engine and vice versa. But, do we know the "whys" behind that rule? When it comes to diesel vs. gasoline, not only are the fuel types different, but the respective engine types are different. And each fuel engine comes with its benefits as well as disadvantages. Diesel vs. Gasoline Gasoline engines were invented in 1876 and were ground-breaking — but they weren't efficient. The four-stroke combustion engine only utilized 10% for the fuel, while the other 90% produced heat and burned off. So, in 1892, Rudolf Diesel created the combustion power engine (also known as the diesel engine). While gasoline engines have had many technological advances that led them to be more efficient than the original model, they operate slightly differently from their diesel engine counterparts. Diesel and Gasoline Engine Differences Both engines use internal combustion, with cylinders compressing air and fuel mixtures to create mechanical energy turned into motion [...]

By |2022-01-19T14:52:20-06:00January 19th, 2022|Car Parts, Car Questions|0 Comments

Let’s Talk Foggy Headlights

Let's talk about something we hate to see on other cars and our own cars — foggy headlights. Your vehicle's headlights make driving at night, rain, and snow easier. But, not if they are foggy and dull. And even if you are washing your car regularly, you can't keep your headlights as shiny and bright as they were when you drove off the car lot. Why is that? Causes of Foggy Headlights Dirt and Grime Sure, you may wash your car weekly, but you can't stop the build-up. Over time, your vehicle and headlamps encounter dirt, salt, grime, and other road debris (it's an inevitable part of being on the road). These things slowly eat away the top coat of your headlamps and cause scratching, which adds to the hazy headlight appearance. The Solution? Cleaning your vehicle regularly is an excellent start as removing any salt or chemicals as soon as possible minimizes their impact on your top-coat. Occasionally restoring the top coat of your car's headlights is a [...]

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