Transmission Repair Specialists in West Jordan, Utah
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You might be driving at full speed on the highway or cruising through town when you notice the check engine light in your dash has come on. The car seems fine and you might be tempted to ignore the warning light. What is the check engine light? Why does the check engine light come on?
The Check Engine light, formally known as the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL), is a signal from the car's engine computer that something is wrong. A federal government mandated on-board diagnostics (OBD) for all passenger cars sold in the United States, a check engine light is different than "service required" light which simply means it’s time for an oil change or air filter check. While increases in repair costs might cause consumers to postpone vehicle repairs, doing so is a bad idea. The reasons a check engine light is on range from a damaged gas cap to a bad sensor. The repairs may not be as costly as you fear.
A loose or damaged gas cap is the least expensive, yet very common, problem that can cause your service engine soon light to come on. Loose or damaged gas caps result in millions of gallons of evaporated fuel each year across the nation. If you notice the check engine light going on and off, try tightening or even replacing the gas cap. The low average repair costs show that simply tightening the cap usually solves the problem.
A failed O2 sensor is the most common cause of a flashing check engine light. The O2 sensor is a critical part of the exhaust system, monitoring how much unburned oxygen is exiting the engine in the exhaust. The sensor sends messages back to the engine to adjust the mix of oxygen and fuel being used. A faulty O2 sensor will result in reduced fuel economy and can take a toll on the catalytic convertor. Replacing the O2 sensor will protect critical engine systems and keep your vehicle running at peak fuel efficiency.
The catalytic converter is a rugged component of the overall exhaust system. Generally, catalytic converter repair is a secondary underlying program that is ignored for too long, such as a failed spark plug. A more costly repair because of the precious metals used in its construction, replacing catalytic converters represented just 6.1% of repairs in 2013.
The mass air flow sensor calculates the amount of fuel needed to mix efficiently with the oxygen in the engine. A malfunctioning sensor will lower fuel economy up to 25 percent. Having it replaced by your mechanic will cost an average of $423.00 but will make it up to you in savings at the pump.
Can spark plugs cause check engine light to flash? Absolutely! A fouled spark plug can cause the engine to misfire. Replacing the spark plugs in a timely manner will be a relatively small expense. The cost to replace spark plugs varies significantly based on the type of car you have and where you take your car. Cars have differing numbers of spark plugs and the accessibility of the spark plugs will affect the labor rate as some cars may be designed in a way that makes the spark plugs harder to reach. Cars like a BMW will be on the higher end, and cars like a Toyota Corolla will be on the lower end. If the problem is ignored, the damage can spread to the spark plug wires, catalytic converter, or ignition coils causing a more costly repair.
Local parts stores can check engine codes for free, but this will just give you an error code, and it just the beginning of the diagnostic process. You can buy a home diagnostic machine yourself, however, you would need to know how to read it.
Ace Auto Repair in West Jordan Utah provides expert diagnostics with written estimates. Many people ignore warning lights if the car still seems to drive the way it used to, however, a check engine light is a red flag that something in your vehicle is amiss. If you see the check engine light flashing and you don’t take care of it immediately, you are putting your car at risk for costlier future repairs and malfunctions.
Salt Lake City, Utah is surrounded by the Great Salt Lake and the mountains; this combination makes for a chilly, wet winter. With the temperatures usually below freezing, the roads can become slick quickly. However, the Department of Transportation is also quick about dumping salt and sand on the highways and roads. Unfortunately, for your car, that salt can cause damage your paint or cause rust spots.
It’s important to winterize your vehicle to properly protect you, and you car. How many times have you left work or the grocery store to find a blizzard has arrived or the parking lot has been turned into a skating rink? Winterizing your car is your best defense against Mother Nature’s winter furies.
Let’s take a look at what you need to do to winterize your car for the snow and ice.
If you need help getting your car ready for winter near West Jordan,Utah, Ace Auto Repair is the place to go.
When it comes to proper car maintenance there are a few basic services that are needed no matter what type or model of car you own. Besides putting gas in them, all cars need oil changes. This basic service can keep your car looking and running great even if it has a few years under its belt.
Check your owner’s manual that came with your car to see manufacturer instruction on oil changes. The general time frame for oil changes is every 3,000 miles, however, if you are driving a car that is less than 5 years old, you may not have to change the oil that frequently. As technology has improved, so have the lubricants and technologies built into your car’s oil system. Many Toyota vehicles require oil changes every 5,000 miles where Chevrolet recommends every 7,500 for models 2007 and newer.
In order to understand why old oil is so bad for your car, you should know just what happens to oil as it ages. First off, the oil loses additives. This means that it becomes less viscous as things like water and particulates collect into it and that causes sludge to build up, which means it cannot properly lubricate your engine. Next, oil picks up pieces of dirt, debris, and even metal shavings which can cause harm and harmful scarring of your engine. Lastly, old oil is not good for your vents and your filters as it can build up and cause issues with proper air getting to the engine. As oil ages, it also reduces in volume which means your car may have less oil in it than it should for proper performance.
Quite simply and for starters, oil is like the blood of your car. It keeps your engine running smoothly, keeps things from overheating, reduces friction, and keeps everything moving smoothly. Motor oil, though it is contained in one compartment of your engine, works to help complete more functions within the engine of your car than any other part or fluid. The oil in your engine essentially helps to lubricate the engine to ensure that it runs smoothly and that too much friction does no build up. Excess friction can cause your engine to lock up making your car virtually useless. You should make sure you change your oil routinely because as oil ages and is used, it loses weight or viscosity making it harder for it to lubricate the engine.
Another critical function of oil is to keep the engine cool. Oil, much like water, is a great conductor of heat. As cool oil flows over the super-heated parts and gears in your engine, it can help to cool down these areas by wicking heat away, thereby keeping your engine from overheating or burning up. With oil that is old, that has improper weight, or that is dirty, the engine is not as cooled as it should be which makes for a very hot engine that will likely overheat and even burn up. Oil can help to move heat away from vital engine parts that are super-heated because they move against one another when the car is in motion. It is vital that the car have clean oil and the proper amount so that heat can be moved around the engine.
If you are in need of an oil change near West Jordan, Utah, contact the pros at Ace Auto Repair. We are honest mechanics that repair all makes and models of cars, trucks, vans, RV’s and SUV’s.
Next to the cost of replacing an engine, replacing a transmission is the most expensive vehicle repair an owner can make. Expect to pay between $1800 and $2500 for completely replacing a transmission. Having the original transmission repair (rebuilding the transmission) is even pricier, averaging $3000 or more, depending on the extent of the damage and make of the vehicle.
Making repairs to a faulty transmission as soon as problems are detected dramatically reduces the cost of transmission work and can prevent the need for transmission replacement. If your car starts exhibiting any one of the following issues, get it to a transmission repair shop as soon as possible. Car problems do not correct themselves or magically disappear! They only worsen and cause more damage to the engine.
Normally functioning transmissions keep your ride smooth during gear shifts. Automatic transmissions that shift hard, jerk or shake during a shift change may mean your transmission fluid needs changed or fluid level is low. In manual transmission vehicles, abnormal gear shifts could indicate damaged gear synchros, worn clutches or other, more severe issues.
Extremely hot transmission fluid has a distinct, acrid smell that does not smell like burning oil but more like burning rubber. Burning transmission fluid indicates a leak that is dripping onto hot engine parts or seriously dirty fluid that needs drained and replaced with new transmission fluid. Running your car with old, contaminated transmission fluid is just as harmful to the engine and transmission as never changing the oil.
If you suspect your transmission needs attention, trying putting your car in neutral and listening for unusual whining, groaning or ticking noises. Wear and tear on parts such as bearings or gear teeth often cause noises that indicate a failing transmission.
Healthy transmissions keep your car in one gear until you decide to change the gear. When your transmission "slips", it may show an RPM of 3500+ or take a long time to coast. Additionally, your vehicle may seem to delay accelerating when you press on the gas, which is an indication that it is not transmitting enough power to the engine's internal combustion part. Transmission slips could also result from broken or worn out bands.
Low transmission fluid may prevent your car from engaging gears. Is your car transmission shifting hard? It may indicate a leak probably exists somewhere in the lines. For cars with manual transmissions, it could be a sign of a worn clutch plate if the vehicle manages to engage and creep a little bit forward. Regardless of whether it is a minor fix, automobiles that don't slide easily into gear require immediate attention by a professional mechanic.
Causes of transmission fluids leaks include loose pans, improperly tightened bolts or unsecured drain plugs, cracked pan gaskets and damaged toque converters or fluid lines. Constantly replacing lost transmission fluid isn't the answer to correcting these problems, either. Your transmission and your engine will not operate efficiently when fluid levels experience wild fluctuations. Getting the leak repaired so that fluid levels remain steady will dramatically extend the life of your vehicle.
You might not hear strange noises or notice a pool of red transmission fluid under your car but when your check engine light comes on, you really need to do exactly what it says and get your engine and transmission checked professionally. Although newer cars are equipped with extra-sensitive sensors that can detect the smallest engine irregularities, all instances of the "check engine" light coming on needs properly diagnosed by a transmission specialist.
Don't depend on shady backyard mechanics to work on your transmission. Trust the experts at Ace Auto in West Jordan, UT to repair transmission problems before they really damage your wallet.
Give your car this 11 step tune-up at least once annually to keep it in peak operating condition. By performing this type of regular maintenance, you’ll be able to catch problems before they leave you stranded on the highway.
Sometimes Utah Summers feel like they take up about half of the year, and though we spend plenty of time cooling down our homes and staying hydrated, we often neglect to realize just how much damage excessive heat can do to our cars. Here are some tips to keep your engine cool even in the dead heat of July.
You're going to want to check your fluids at regular intervals, in particular your oil and your coolant. You may be surprised how quickly you burn through coolant in the summertime, and your oil may need replacing sooner than you think due to the extreme temperatures. It may even be wise to simply get an oil change right at the start of summer just to be safe.
Fresh fluids won't do your car much good if they're not getting where they need to go. Check your hoses for cracks and leaks, and if they're becoming very dry and brittle, consider having them replaced now, before they cost you money in repairs and wasted fluids.
If you don't know how to do these check ups yourself, you can take your car into the shop or seek out a friend who knows what they're doing, but you're going to want to check the radiator, thermostat and water pump if your car's going to survive the summer.
If you do have issues with your car overheating, don't waste time, take it directly to your mechanic. The more you subject your car to overheating, the more damage it's going to do.
A good way to deal with your car if it starts to overheat while you're on the road and there's nowhere to safely pull over: turn on the heater. That sounds like the last thing that you want to do while driving in the hot Utah sun, but if you crank the interior temperature, you'll allow the engine to vent some of that excess heat. So if your engine starts to overheat and you absolutely have to deal with it now, crank the heat, roll the windows down, grab a bottle of water and keep an eye out for a safe place to pull off the road.
If you take good care of your car, then you shouldn't have too much of a problem with your car overheating. Just keep it tuned up, keep the fluids topped off and don't put off getting it checked out if you do have issues with overheating. Contact Ace Auto today for a free engine repair estimate.
It’s summertime and the living should be easy. That is, if the air conditioning in your car is working properly. Before you get hot and bothered by an A/C that isn’t keeping you cool, take time to go over a few basic steps. There are some parts you can check yourself to see if you can get it going again.
At the first sign of a unit that’s not functioning properly, go to your auto supply store and pick up an A/C Recharge Kit. Open the kit and read through the directions. Follow them carefully and see if the kit will solve the problems you are having. It is possible that by recharging your air conditioning it will start blowing cool air again.
Another place you want to look is in the pressure sensor. Check your unit and try to locate the low pressure sensor to make sure that it is working as it should be. You can check the current pressure using a special gauge. If you see that the pressure is low, fill it using the recharge kit. Follow the instructions carefully so you are sure to fill it to the correct pressure. Once you start filling it, stop every 10-15 seconds so you can take another reading using the pressure gauge. This will give you the current level. Keep starting, stopping and checking until the gauge shows that you have reached the correct level of pressure.
Check that your air conditioning unit’s compressor clutch is engaging. However, there are several things that can go wrong with this part of the unit. Depending on the problem, repairs can range from inexpensive to replacing the whole compressor clutch. For instance, if it is not engaging properly or if it is making a noise, there can be many causes and it is not always easy to pinpoint the exact reason. An example of these problems could be a clogged condenser, a faulty condenser fan, pressure that is too high or even an overcharge. In any of these instances, it is important to evaluate the entire air conditioning system to know which pieces need to be replaced.
Once you've determined your compressor clutch is functioning, and your pressure is low, attach the recharge kit to the low pressure sensor and begin filling, checking the pressure gauge every 5-10 seconds. Once the pressure reaches 'normal' levels, go take a seat in your car and see if it's blowing cool air again. If it is, then you're done!
After trying to evaluate and fix the problems you are experiencing with your car’s AC, go ahead and turn it on and see if you have fixed it. If it is now blowing cold air, you did it! Get in and enjoy! However, if the unit is still not blowing cold air, it is time to take it to a specialist. Contact Ace Auto Repair today for a Free A/C repair estimate.
Your tires are a critical, but often overlooked part of your automobile. Knowing what to look for, and why you are looking for it, can help you understand the importance of proper tire care. We’ve put together a list of five tips to help you get the most out of your tires.
Keeping your tires properly inflated can help your tires last longer, improve your vehicle’s handling and provide maximum safety for you and your passengers. If those reasons aren’t good enough, maybe the next reason will be. Tires that are properly inflated will help you improve your gas mileage and save on fuel. Your proper inflation level can be found in your owner’s manual, on the vehicle placard, usually inside the drivers-side door, or on the tire itself. Remember, over-inflating can be just as adverse as under-inflation so keep an eye on your tire pressure with an inexpensive tire gauge.
Road conditions, tire inflation, and the location of your tires on your vehicle will all affect how your tires wear. Having your tires rotated is where your tires are “rotated” to different positions around your car. This provides for more even wear and longer tire life.
Like most things created by man, tires and the rims they are mounted on are not perfect. To perform better on the road however “balancing” can help create a better balance to them. This not only improves your tire wear, but it will help tires wear more evenly. If you notice a slight shaking or vibration in your car, it could be that your tires need balancing. Balanced tires can eliminate that shaking which will also save wear and tear on the vehicle itself.
Nothing good can come out of procrastinating when it comes to tire issues. Un-addressed tire issues can lead to everything from an inconvenient roadside flat to a dangerous hi-speed blowout. That leads us to our fifth and final tip to help you get the most out of your tires…
Your tire’s tread is your best indication of what is going on with your tires. It is why you should check your tire’s tread frequently. If a front tire appears to be wearing unevenly it could be your wheels need alignment. Not only keep an eye on your tire’s wear, but occasionally check your tire for any foreign objects.
When you need help with an auto or truck repair, we invite you to contact us. We offer complete auto repair services throughout the Salt Lake Valley, Utah area. We service all makes and models. From small repairs to a complete engine exchange, we take pride in doing it right the first time.
Gas prices are reaching all-time highs. So too is the volume of advertising for "gas-saving" products, designed to appeal to consumers looking for ways to improve fuel efficiency. Although there are practical steps car owners can take to increase gas mileage, the Better Business Bureau warns consumers to be wary of gas-saving claims for automotive devices or oil and gas additives. While some of the gas-saving products have been proven to work, the savings are small, at best. What’s more, you could end up with serious engine problems or a voided manufacturer warranty by adding after-market devices to your engine. The BBB recommends being particularly skeptical of the following kinds of advertising claims:
Instead of searching for miraculous gas-saving products, the BBB recommends that consumers consider taking one or more of the no-cost or low-cost actions that can help drivers save on gas consumption. The most important place to start is at the gas pump; buy only the octane level gas you need. Check your owner's manual to determine the right octane level for your car. Here are more tips from the BBB to help you get better gas mileage: