Car Parts

My ABS Warning Light is On, What Does that Mean?

As drivers, we may be accustomed to a few dashboard lights. Perhaps it's the "high-beams" light when you're driving dark, unlit roads, the "tire pressure" indicator on cold mornings, or even the "low gas" light when you're feeling brave. But, what about the ABS warning light? Anyone see that one lately? What Does ABS Stand For? Over the years, cars add more and more safety features. And in vehicles manufactured during or after the 1990s, those safety features include the Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS). ABS has one purpose: keeping your tires from locking at the same time when braking. This technology allows your vehicle to keep a grip on the pavement instead of skidding and sliding. This especially helps in situations where grip is already reduced, like on wet pavement or dirt roads. While you don't think about it until you need it, you always want the ABS ready to spring into action. So, when you see your ABS warning light on, it's essential to take notice. My ABS [...]

By |2020-03-19T14:57:49-06:00March 19th, 2020|Car Parts, Car Questions|0 Comments

Car Parts 101 – The Car Muffler

Have you ever heard an unusually loud car and wondered why it made such a ruckus? Chances are the car has an aftermarket muffler or has a hole in the muffler/exhaust system—the muffler is essential to suppressing the loud sounds of a vehicle's exhaust as it exits the car. The name seems pretty fitting, right? A muffler muffles the sound. Although Texas may not have a decibel regulation on the sound produced by vehicles, the southern state does have code on car mufflers. According to the Texas Transportation Code, "A motor vehicle shall be equipped with a muffler in good working condition that continually operates to prevent excessive or unusual noise." It's a good idea to know the ins and outs of your car's muffler. Let's take a more in-depth look at how mufflers work. How Does a Car Muffler Work? A muffler is a cylindrical, metal part that attaches to the exhaust. Your car's engine works off of combustion, which can be quite noisy. As the exhaust funnels [...]

By |2019-08-22T12:54:43-06:00August 22nd, 2019|Car Parts|0 Comments

What is a Catalytic Converter?

As of 1975, the catalytic converter has been a mandatory component in cars, and for a good reason too. As your car's engine burns gas, it creates toxic pollutants that cannot be released back into the environment. This is where your car's catalytic converter comes in. Forming part of your car's exhaust system, the catalytic converter is designed to reduce the levels of nitrous oxide and ozone released into the atmosphere. What Does a Catalytic Converter Do? As the gasoline burns inside the engine, the expanding gases from combustion push the pistons to turn the crankshaft. These cases are full of toxic molecules that can wreak havoc on the environment. The catalytic converter takes toxic chemicals produced by your car and makes them less harmful through a series of reactions. Through these chemical reactions, the byproducts become carbon dioxide and water, which are okay for immediate release. Where is the Catalytic Converter? Many newer vehicles have the catalytic converter close to the engine; the older models, they were [...]

By |2019-08-16T14:54:09-06:00July 24th, 2019|Car Parts|0 Comments

Car Parts 101 – Car Radiators

Let's talk about car parts! Specifically, an essential part of your car's cooling system, car radiators. Because when it gets hot in Texas, it's really, really hot. Your car's engine works through combustion. Combustion means explosions. Explosions mean heat. For your car to take you across town, it has to produce a lot of heat. Without a cooling system, the engine combustion jacks up the engine's temperatures quickly, causing issues when it gets too hot. The radiator is one car part you don't want to have trouble with, especially in the dead of summer. So, what is a radiator, and how does it work keeping your car cool? What Are the Parts of Car Radiators? You can locate your car's radiator under the hood next to the engine. Radiators come in different makes and models, but they all have the same necessary components. Coolant – the liquid used to conduct the heat away from the engine, transmission, and radiator. Coolants can be gaseous or liquid. However, most modern vehicles [...]

By |2019-07-09T13:21:25-06:00July 9th, 2019|Car Parts|1 Comment

How Do Anti-Lock Brakes Work?

Cars today have many safety features, from lane change assist to rearview cameras and even to self-driving vehicles. Even if your vehicle isn’t the newest model, chances are you have at least one or more of the modern safety features — including anti-lock brakes. Starting in the 1990s, the Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS) became a standard among the safety features in all modern cars. And for a good reason! Every time you drive, you use your brakes. Anti-Lock brakes changed the way your car reacts when you have to stop quickly and forcefully. In short, ABS keeps your vehicle’s wheels from all locking up at the same time. A car does not automatically stop just because all four tires have stopped spinning. Instead, the vehicle keeps its momentum, throwing the vehicle into a skid or a spinning motion, causing the driver to lose control of the car potentially. One of the critical features of this braking system is that it allows your car to maintain its grip on the pavement, safely bringing your vehicle [...]

By |2019-06-06T12:21:23-06:00June 6th, 2019|Car Parts, Car Questions|0 Comments

5 Things to Know About Airbags

Car maintenance is not always about the longevity of your car. It can also be about safety. How often do you think about the airbags in your car? What are important things to know about airbags? From safety rules to how they work, here's a few things about your car's airbags. A Brief History of Airbags in Cars Car airbags are also known as a Supplementary Restraint System (SRS) and are usually found in the dashboard, interior sides, and the steering wheel. Airbags were first introduced in the 1970s. In 1998 they became a federal regulation in car production. We rarely hear or think about airbags outside of car accidents. However, you should consider them part of your regular car maintenance. Why? According to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), “Airbags reduce the chance that your upper body or head will strike the vehicle's interior during a crash.” Airbags usually deploy within 300 to 400 milliseconds during a crash. This means that they have some super-charges projectiles behind [...]

Signs of a Worn Suspension: Shocks and Struts

As a car owner, you are well aware that your vehicle needs regular care like tire replacements and oil changes. But, how often do you think about your car’s suspension? Because drivers often think that suspension is only about a smooth ride, this part of the car can be overlooked a lot when it comes to repairs. Your suspension is made up of many parts and can affect the ability to steer and turn the car too. Your car’s suspension basically connects the body of the vehicle to the wheels. It’s what gives the driver the ability to steer and move the car. The suspension is made of many things - tires, tire air, springs, links, and struts/shock absorbers. That’s right, struts and shock absorbers are different components. They can be found in separate cars and are not interchangeable. For example. If you have a car that is built with struts, you cannot replace those broken or worn parts with shock absorbers. So, what’s the difference? The Difference Between [...]

By |2019-03-14T13:44:39-06:00December 31st, 2018|Car Parts|0 Comments

What You Should Know About Parking Brakes

Every car comes with a parking brake, and we (the drivers) use them often. But what do the experts say about how often we should use our parking brakes? Do you know how your parking brake works? What happens if you forget to take off the parking brake while driving? This post should answer all of your questions about your car’s parking brake and then some. What is a Parking Brake? First off, let’s establish what a parking brake is and how it works. In general, brakes apply pressure to the back wheels of a car. A parking brake can be a set of cables or a locking mechanism that prevent the car’s wheels from slipping or rotating when the vehicle should be motionless. The parking brake stays in place until disengaged. Parking brakes are called by different names, such as “e-brake,” “emergency brake,” and “handbrake.” They were originally designed as a secondary set of brakes if the primary pair failed. Pulling the hand brake while driving will bring [...]

By |2018-11-08T15:17:09-06:00November 8th, 2018|Car Parts, Car Questions|0 Comments

Car Basics: Your Car’s Alternator

While your car battery provides the electricity - and jolt - your car needs to start, it doesn't power your vehicle. That's the job of your car's alternator. In fact, without a properly working alternator, your car isn't moving anywhere. Your Car's Alternator is the Generator In fact, that was its old name — the generator. And today's modern alternators work the same way. After giving the spark the engine needs to get started, the battery relies on the alternator for continued power. As the components, belts and gears spin and crank under the hood, the wheel on the alternator converts this motion into energy. Similar to the mechanism of a hydroelectric dam. Without the alternator, your car battery will not recharge. And your car won't be going anywhere — something that doesn't make anyone's day better. Three Signs of a Failing Alternator With so many components getting power from your alternator, it's important to keep it in good working condition, or you could find yourself not moving. Luckily, the alternator is made of up [...]

By |2018-09-27T12:34:50-06:00September 27th, 2018|Car Parts, Car Questions|0 Comments
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