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Yearly Archives: 2014

Coolant/Antifreeze Service At Northtown Auto Clinic

Anyone that drives a car in North Kansas City knows that engines get hot when they run. But did you know that engines need to be cooled to keep running? Heat inside an engine can cause the metal parts to expand, which can seize up an engine and make it stop running. It can even ruin the entire engine! Good car care requires keeping your SUV cooling system in good condition. A vehicle’s cooling system circulates water and antifreeze (coolant) through the engine where it absorbs heat. It then flows to the radiator where the water and antifreeze are cooled by the air that flows over the radiator. Then it circulates back into the SUV’s engine to absorb more heat. Why shouldn’t Liberty car owners just use water? Because water boils at temperatures that are often reached inside of an engine. Steam won’t cool your SUV engine and is hard to contain within the cooling system. The antifreeze keeps the water from boiling ... read more

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Cooling System

Budget For Maintenance in North Kansas City

Sometimes busy North Kansas City residents dream about going back to the “simpler” days of our grandparents. But if you could travel back in time and take a road trip around Kansas City in a Model T, you might change your mind. The improved designs and quality of today’s automobiles have significantly reduced the amount of time North Kansas City auto owners spend at the side of the road during breakdowns. With proper maintenance, today’s vehicles can stay on the road longer than ever before. Some of those improvements, however, have led to higher repair costs. For example, older cars often broke down from vapor lock. Gas vaporized while traveling from the gas tank to the fuel pump. No gas, no power. The car quits going. The solution was simple — you just sat by the road until the car would start up again. Today’s North Kansas City car owners would hardly tolerate that kind of inconvenience; and it’s likely that yesterday’s North Kansas Ci ... read more

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Maintenance

Drive Train Service in North Kansas City at Northtown Auto Clinic

The drive train in your vehicle includes all the vital components that transfer power from the transmission to the wheels. Those components differ depending on what type of vehicle you drive, namely, front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive, all-wheel drive or four-wheel drive. The preventive maintenance your driveshaft needs will also differ by what type of vehicle you drive. Let’s start with front-wheel drive. In this vehicle, the transmission and the differential are combined in one component, known as the transaxle. The transaxle is connected to two half-shafts (axles), which are then connected to the wheels with a constant velocity (or CV) joint, which is protected by an airtight rubber boot. Northtown Auto Clinic service for this type of driveline includes servicing the transaxle and inspecting the CV boot. If the boot is damaged, the CV joint will need to be insp ... read more

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Drive Train

Easy Miles

Have you ever noticed that your car maker has a schedule in your owner’s manual for what is called “severe service” maintenance? Let’s define what severe driving conditions aren’t: The easiest driving a vehicle experiences is traveling on the interstate for twenty miles or more at a constant rate of 65 miles per hour in 75°F weather with only passengers on board. Change any one of those parameters and you are adding stress to your engine. Change them significantly, and you are driving under severe conditions. Let’s look at the essential parameters one a time. First, the length of the trip. Short trips around North Kansas City are harder on an engine than longer ones. As your engine cools down, water in the air condenses onto the engine. When you heat the engine again, the water evaporates off. This is healthy. But on short trips, the engine doesn’t stay hot enough long enough for all of the water to evaporate so it starts to build up in t ... read more

Check Engine Light Diagnosis At Northtown Auto Clinic

Hello North Kansas City motorists. Have you ever had your check engine light come on? Did you panic? Or just scowl and ignore it? What should you do? Pull to the side of the road and call a tow truck? Or just keep driving? What does that little light really mean for North Kansas City auto owners? First of all, the Check Engine or Service Engine light does indicate that something is wrong. That’s why it is called a warning light. But the something that is wrong might be a loose gas cap, or it might be serious SUV engine trouble. That’s why Kansas City car owners often don’t know how to respond to it. The check engine light has two modes: it flashes or it stays on. A flashing light is serious. You need to get your vehicle to Northtown Auto Clinic in North Kansas City ASAP. No, you don’t need to call a tow truck, but, yes, you can’t wait to get your car serviced. If your check engine light is on and ... read more

Protecting Your SUV From Theft In North Kansas City, Missouri

Every car in North Kansas City, Missouri is at risk for theft. So it’s up to us North Kansas City drivers to make our cars a less appealing target and more of a challenge – hopefully sending potential thieves to look elsewhere. The National Insurance Crime Bureau recommends a layered approach to protecting vehicles: Common sense Visible and audible devices Immobilizing devices Tracking devices Let’s review each of these. First, common sense: you would be surprised how many vehicles are stolen in Missouri where the keys were left in the ignition with the doors unlocked. Always take your keys and lock the doors. In fact, in some places it’s against the law to leave a vehicle unattended with the keys in the ignition. And don’t leave spare keys in the car or hide them outside – because a thief will find them. No ... read more

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Automotive News

It

Part of the engineering that goes into designing a vehicle is testing the components to ensure that they meet durability and safety standards. Because of this, manufacturers have a good idea as to how long the parts in your vehicle will last under normal driving conditions. For this reason, they give us guidelines to follow regarding how often to inspect the various parts and systems on our SUVs. Vehicular components are required to meet certain standards. The government mandates some of these standards. Others are set by the auto industry. Recommended car maintenance schedules are designed to help North Kansas City auto owners maintain these standards. Disregarding routine maintenance or procrastinating preventive maintenance will result in lowered performance and reduced safety for a vehicle. Maintenance schedules are designed to ensure three areas of important automotive performance for North Kansas City motoris ... read more

Categories:

Inspection

Under Pressure in North Kansas City: TPMS

Have you noticed an increase in price when you get a flat fixed in North Kansas City or your tires rotated? It might be the result of your TPMS, or Tire Pressure Monitoring System. The federal government began requiring a TPMS system on 2008 model year passenger vehicles and light trucks. Some 2006 and 2007 models may have them as well. The system has a warning light that is mounted on the dashboard that will go on if one of the tires becomes severely under inflated. Why the new requirement? Because underinflated tires are the number one cause of tire failure. Tire blowouts cause harmful and sometimes fatal accidents. Underinflated tires also need longer stopping distance and can skid, both of which also present dangers on Missouri roads. Many flat tires can also be prevented by proper tire inflation, and though this may seem an economic consideration, North Kansas City drivers who have changed a flat on the side of the road recognize that t ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Talk To Northtown Auto Clinic About New Shoes For Your Vehicle

Custom wheels are one way that North Kansas City folks express themselves and personalize their SUV. But they aren’t as cheap and easy as sticking decals on your back window. There are several essential factors need to be considered, including cost, the fit of the wheel, modifications that will have to be made to the SUV, how the new wheels and tires will affect the operation of the vehicle, your driving habits, and, of course, the style of the wheels. Most North Kansas City auto owners start with the last factor: the style of the wheels. But that should be the last thing we choose. When considering custom wheels, you should first carefully consider your budget. Some wheels may require costly adjustments to your SUV suspension system, brakes, or traction systems. You need to know what you can afford before you start shopping in Kansas City or get your heart set on a particular type of wh ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Smart North Kansas City Drivers Protect Against Overheating

Engines get hot when they run. This heat can build up and damage vital engine parts, so engines need a cooling system to keep them running. Cooling system failure is the most common mechanical failure in vehicles. This is unfortunate, because these failures are usually easy for North Kansas City auto owners to prevent. The radiator is the best-known and most recognizable part of the cooling system. Hoses filled with coolant (also known as antifreeze) connect the radiator to the engine. The coolant draws heat from the engine, and then flows to the radiator. Air passing through cooling fins on the radiator cools the coolant. The coolant then cycles back into the engine to start the process over again. The most critical component of the cooling system, however, is the coolant itself. A mixture of water and coolant/antifreeze helps keep it both from freezing and from boiling away. Either can result in serious engine damage. Different engines requi ... read more

Categories:

Cooling System