Yearly Archives: 2012

Dealer or Independent????

We are asked this question quite a bit, so we decided to write down our OPINION on this subject. Firstly, a dealer is a great option if you do not have a solid "independent specialist" within reasonable distance of convenience. The dealer offers all high quality OEM (original equipment parts). Their skill set is generally good. There is however a big curve of skill set at a dealership. There are "just started today" low dollar apprentices all the way to high caliber/paid diagnosticians or Masters of their trade. When you take a car in for routine maintenance at a dealership, the odds that your vehicle lands in the "masters" or high cost bay is usually pretty slim. They are working on more complex work. Everyone needs to start somewhere, but at a solid independent specialist, the owner is usually one of those "masters" that went out on their own, so if they are training a newbie, you still have the "masters" eyes on your vehicle when even the simplest of tasks (oil changes, etc.) are ... read more

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Garage Blogging!

Conventional oil vs. Synthetic oil...THE CONTROVERSY!

A question that our customers ask is “What do you think about synthetic oil?” Our OPINION goes a little something like this..... We like synthetic oils. It is a better quality oil by far. Molecularly it does not break down like petroleum based or conventional oil, which means it is fighting against metal wear. We would suggest that everyone convert to synthetic oil. That being said, there is the idea that it lasts twice or three times as long in there as conventional oil, which molecularly is true, but it still will burn away because it is oil. When oil is new, it is a beautiful golden liquid, if you pour a little bit in a dish and try to light it on fire, it is not easy to do. Anyone who has changed their own oil, knows that when it comes out....it is anything but beautiful looking. It is black and stains anything it gets on. This blackness is a combination of fuel and carbon which is a naturally occurring event inside a combustion engine. If you pour this into a dish and attempt to ... read more

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Maintenance

My car is not worth that much!!...Is it?!?!?!?

Hello readers, it is a sad time in a car's life when it reaches that 8 and 10 year old mark (so young) when the inevitable replacement of items starts to happen. If your shop has not been proactive in the recommendation of wear items, they can start to add up. $900 for struts, $600 for hoses, $500 for ball joints, etc. If that is all recommended at once, with some fluid maintenance, you are sitting at $2,100. The question we get asked, mostly by newer customers of ours is...."The car is not worth that much, is it?" In all fairness, some are not, but most are, depending on how you look at it. If you have a car that selling value is only $2,500 but needs $2,100 worth of work, what questions do you need to ask yourself? We have a couple. How has the reliability been? Do you still like the car? If the answers are good, and yes, the answer is "yes" it is worth it. Here is why....if you go to buy a new car, let's say 30K or so, the dollars lost are $2,400 in sales tax, not counting the imm ... read more

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Garage Blogging!

The Power of Steering...

Today's blog is about the power steering fluid and system. This fluid is very often overlooked. It resides in a reservoir and runs through a little "blender" called a power steering pump every time the engine is running. This fluid is an oil, just like any other. It does have some special additives and characteristics that are unique, but still, just another fluid. The power steering fluid will slowly populate with fine aluminum/metal shavings from the power steering pump, much like when you sharpen a knife on a stone with oil. These shavings will eventually work their way throughout the system and find a place to call home. They usually will embed by seals and o-ringed areas. Since the fluid is pressurized from the pump to operate, the seals in the system are important to keep the fluid from leaking out. All seals, over time, will harden up and not seal as well. Once a piece of the shavings gets between the seal and whatever it is sealed against, a leak will occur. When the power st ... read more

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Maintenance
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