Yearly Archives: 2020

Time for Differential Service at Craig's Car Care Inc?

Hello LUCAS - let's talk differentials. If you have a rear-wheel drive vehicle, your differential is on the back axle. With front-wheel drive cars, the differential is up front. All-wheel drive and 4-wheel drive vehicles have three differentials - front, rear and in the middle. So you see, you've got a differential (or two or three) and it needs service now and then.What does your vehicle differential do? Well, it compensates for the differences in speed between your outer and inner wheels in a turn. Using the dimensions of a typical car, let's compare the distance the wheels travel from the start of a turn through to the completion of the turn.The inside wheel travels about 12.6 feet/3.8 meters. How much farther does the outside wheel travel? About 18.8 feet/5.7 meters – over 6 feet/1.9 meters more. This means the outer tire has to rotate 9 times in the same amount of time that the inner tire has to rotate only 6 times - so the out ... read more

Categories:

Drive Train

Breathe Deep With Your Cabin Air Filter

Bad air quality while you're driving around LUCAS is nothing to sneeze at. But seriously, more and more vehicles these days come equipped with a cabin air filter. Since they're fairly new on the scene, a lot of folks don't know about them yet.These filters clean the air in the passenger compartment, or cabin, of your car or truck. They do the same job as the furnace filter you have at home. They can filter out particles as small as three microns. By contrast, a grain of sand is about 200 microns.So your cabin air filter can clean out dust, pollution, pollen and spores to keep the air in your car nice and clean. And just like your furnace filter, they need to be replaced when they get dirty. Check your owner's manual or ask your service advisor at Craig's Car Care Inc, but they typically need to be replaced at around 12,000 to 15,000 miles (19,000-24,000 kilometers).The filter is usually either under the hood or under the dashboard. Some are a little tricky to get to, so you ... read more

Categories:

Cabin Air Filter

Growing Old Together (Maintaining an Older Vehicle)

More and more of us are hanging on to our vehicles longer.  A company by the name of HIS Markit recently released a report that shows the average age of light vehicles in the U.S. is now 11.8 years.  Light vehicles are cars, SUVs (sport utility vehicles) and CUVs (compact utility vehicles).  In Canada, the average life expectancy of a vehicle there is around 13 years, and in the U.S., it's around 15.  Vehicles are lasting longer these days, and there are several reasons for that. One expert cites better technology and overall quality improvements.  While in past years, vehicles were made mainly of heavier steel components, more modern vehicles contain lighter magnesium and aluminum alloys, high-strength steel, polymers and carbon fiber.  They last longer and reduce the overall vehicle weight, and that can contribute to better fuel economy. Modern internal combustion engine designs have been improved, and since they use more computers, they are more efficie ... read more

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Older Vehicles

The Craig's Car Care Inc Guide to Saving Fuel: Get Rid of Dirty Oil

A lot of us drivers are asking ourselves the same question lately: how can we save on fuel? LUCAS area residents are all cutting back, if not in fuel consumption, then in other areas of our lives. Preventive Maintenance Preventive maintenance is an important way people in LUCAS can conserve fuel by improving fuel economy. And one of the easiest and most effective ways to do that is to keep the oil in our vehicle adequate and clean.Oil lubricates your vehicle engine and keeps it running smoothly. If you're running low, there is increased friction in your engine. Friction creates drag, which means it takes more fuel to keep the vehicle motor running. This all translates to lower fuel economy.Check your oil to make sure the engine is getting all it needs. Your owner's manual and service advisor at Craig's Car Care Inc will tell you the proper weight and type of oil for your vehicle. Responsible Car Care Dirty oil grits up your engine, which also incr ... read more

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Fuel System

Why People in LUCAS Hesitate to Get Their Vehicle Serviced

A recent report stated that over 80 percent of the vehicles on our LUCAS, TX, roads have one or more service or repair that's needed but hasn't been taken care of. Now that's a lot of undone service. That translates into something over 160 million vehicles in North America alone. Some of the neglected items are minor. Others are serious safety concerns.There are several reasons we hesitate to take care of recommended services, especially services that our LUCAS automotive advisor recommends when we're in for something else, like an oil change.The first issue boils down to comfort with car care. We don't always feel we know enough to make good decisions. Some of that can be attributed to the fact that vehicles are so reliable these days. They almost become an appliance. Of course you love your vehicle, but if you don't have to worry about it breaking down all the time, you're not forced to think as much about preventive maintenance ... read more

Categories:

Inspection

Singing a Different Tune (Up) (Tune Ups)

Engines required a lot more maintenance in earlier times.  You'd have to have your spark plugs, wires, rotors, caps, distributor points, fuel and air filters changed periodically.  There were mechanical adjustments of a vehicle's timing, dwell, spark gap and idle mixture, too. Unless you like to tinker with old cars, a lot of those terms won't mean much to you.  That service was called a "tune up" back then, and you can see why.  But now, computers have reduced the number of maintenance items, and a tune up is a whole lot different than it used to be.  In fact, in some vehicle service facilities, that term is also a thing of the past.  A tune up of today would more accurately be called simply periodic maintenance. Now, most vehicles still have spark plugs and wires, fuel filters, air filters and PCV valves, and they should be inspected tested and/or replaced at regular intervals.  Your vehicle's manufacturer has made recommendations on how often that ... read more

Higher Mileage Service Intervals for LUCAS

LUCAS drivers have probably noticed that the government mandates a lot of equipment on cars: emission devices and control computers, safety equipment like airbags and crash worthiness requirements. All of this is great for the motoring public in the LUCAS area, but it does add quite a bit to the price of a new car.Because new cars are more expensive, LUCAS residents are driving their old cars longer. The average car is now over nine years old. 68% of vehicles on the road have more than 75,000 miles/120,000 kilometers. As cars age, their performance drops, they have difficulty idling for long periods and are more sensitive to weather extremes. Fortunately today's cars are up to the challenge - but they need a little help to keep on going.Some owner's manuals don't outline service requirements and schedules at higher mileage. Of course, that doesn't mean it doesn't have to be done. In fact, it's more important than ever for LUCAS drivers to stay on top of routine auto ma ... read more

Categories:

Fuel System

Wheel Balancing at Craig's Car Care Inc

So you love your job, and your family life is great. Congratulations! You have achieved balance. But can you say the same for your wheels? LUCAS drivers can tell if their tires are out of balance by vibrations at higher speeds on TX roads. If one of the front tires is out, you feel the vibration in the steering wheel. If it's a back tire, you'll feel the vibration in your seat.Tires and wheels are pretty heavy. When a tire is mounted on a wheel at Craig's Car Care Inc, it is usually not perfectly balanced. So the technician will spin the tire on a machine to determine where it's too heavy. He will then place weights on the wheels in strategic locations to balance it out. When a tire is out of balance, it actually bounces down the road instead of rolling smoothly. Since the average size tire rotates at about 850 revolutions per minute at 60 mph/97 kph, it is actually slamming into the pavement 14 times a second. That's where you get your vibration.Most people in LUCAS are surprised at ... read more

Categories:

Tires and Wheels

Timing Belt Replacement in LUCAS

Today we want to talk to LUCAS drivers about timing belts. They're something that many drivers don't know much about and yet your vehicle won't run if it's broken – and it could cause many thousands of dollars damage if it does break. A broken timing belt is usually a tale of woe. Even though timing belt replacement is scheduled in the owner's manual, it's not the kind of thing that most LUCAS area auto owners remember because it's not well understood.Let's review what a timing belt does. As most know, the engine's power is generated in the cylinders. A piston rides up and down in the cylinder. During the first down stroke, an intake valve at the top of the cylinder opens and air and fuel is drawn into the cylinder. Then the piston returns to the top, compressing the fuel and air mix. At the top, the spark plug fires, igniting the fuel, pushing the piston down in the power stroke. As the piston once again returns up in the final stroke of the cycle, an exhaust valve opens at the ... read more

Categories:

Parts

Should LUCAS Soccer Moms Follow the Severe Service Schedule?

So you take your vehicle in for maintenance and the pro at Craig's Car Care Inc tells you that you ought to change your oil more often. What? You followed the maintenance schedule – but you take a second look at that “severe service” schedule and see some of the following: 1. Most of your trips around LUCAS are less than four miles/six and a half kilometers.2. Most of your trips are less than 10 miles/16 km when outside TX temperatures are below freezing.3. You don't do a lot of TX freeway driving, so you drive at low speeds most of the time.4. You drive in an area with a lot of pollution, dust, dirt, mud or slush.5. You frequently tow a trailer, haul heavy loads around LUCAS or use a car-top carrier.6. The weather in your area can get very hot or very cold.Surprising, isn't it? Severe driving isn't quite what you'd envisioned.Ask yourself: "Which auto service schedule should I follow?" For some of us, it's obvious. But for most of us, it's ... read more

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