Albert Lea Auto Repair

Albert Lea Auto Repair

(507) 377-3320
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Category Archives: Maintenance

Vehicle Maintenance Tips for Beginners

Vehicle Maintenance Tips for Beginners

So, you purchased your first vehicle or are new to maintaining a vehicle. What do you need to know about keeping your vehicle reliable and on the road? What are the vital steps to take to make sure you can count on your vehicle when you need it most? Waiting until you are broke down on the side of the road is by far the most expensive way to maintain your vehicle. Here are some great ways to prevent that situation! 1. Get to know your vehicle. Each vehicle has its own quirks and peculiarities. Almost like a personality. Get to know the personality of your vehicle. Learn how to operate the systems that your vehicle is equipped with. It may have many creature comforts, but do you know how to use them? Your owner’s manual will have more details about each system related to your specific vehicle. Headlights. Know how to manually turn them on and off if the automatic function quits. Door Locks. It may seem silly but with most vehicles using power ... read more

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Maintenance

Shocks and Struts

Shocks and Struts

  What do I need to know about shocks and struts?   Most modern vehicles provide the operator with a smooth and comfortable ride, thanks in part to your vehicle’s suspension system.  A critical component of the vehicles suspension system are the shocks and struts.  Often overlooked, these parts play a vital role in ensuring not only your comfort but also your safety on the road.  Let’s explore what you need to know about shocks and struts. The Basics: Shocks vs. Struts Before getting into why you would need to replace either, it is important to understand the difference between shocks and struts. While they provide the same function in a vehicle, to dampen suspension oscillations, how they are incorporated into the vehicle suspension system is very different. Shocks (Shock Absorbers) These are usually hydraulic, and gas filled cylinders that control the bouncing motion of the vehicle tires and ... read more

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Maintenance

CVT Transmission

CVT Transmission

What is a CVT Transmission? CVT is short for Continuously Variable Transmission. They are a different twist on the automatic transmissions most of us are familiar with. Many auto manufacturers are now incorporating CVT transmissions into their smaller cars and light SUVs. The original concept for a CVT transmission was from none other than Leonardo DaVinci back in 1490. It wasn’t officially patented in the US until 1886 by Daimler and Benz. CVT transmissions are used in more than just automobiles. They are very common in snowmobiles, ATVs (Four wheelers), and UTVs (Side by sides). Mainly due to the simplistic design and compact size. What makes a CVT different from a regular automatic transmission? The short answer is gears. A regular automatic transmission starts out in a low gear and gradually shifts to higher gears as the vehicle accelerates. Think of it as an automatic version of a manual transmission. Each gear has a distinct, non-changing, gear ratio associated with it. If ... read more

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Maintenance

Time To Take Another Look at Diesel Vehicles

Let's debunk some of the myths about diesel powered vehicles. 1. Diesel Burns Dirty This was true years ago. Since 2006, however, U.S. diesel vehicles have been required by law to use ultra-low-sulfur diesel or USLD. Modern diesels are soot-free and have a smaller carbon footprint. 2. Diesels Are Sluggish Not any more. They are as fast off the line as similar gasoline-powered cars. If your idea of fun is to spend an afternoon test-driving new cars, go take a spin in a diesel BMW or Porsche. 3. Diesels Are Loud Back in the day, you could hear a diesel motor from a mile away. Today's diesels run quiet. 4. Diesels Have a Bad Resale Value Actually, diesel vehicles have a lower depreciation rate. Another often-overlooked benefit is lower risk of fire. Diesel fuel is less flammable and won't explode like gasoline. Diesel engines require parts that are heavier and stronger. At Sanderson Auto, we occasionally service diesel cars and trucks with over 300,000 miles/500,000 kilo ... read more

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Maintenance

Maintenance Recommendations

Maintenance Recommendations

Basic Oil Change: 3,000 miles/Synthetic Oil Change: 5,000 miles or per manufacturer recommendation. Engine Air Filter: Dirty, contaminated air filters can restrict proper air flow and result in reduced engine performance, fuel economy, and damage air flow sensors. Have them replaced every 15, 000 miles! Cabin Air Filter: A restricted airflow affects the amount of air flowing through the ventilation system resulting in poor heating or cooling in the passenger compartment. In some cases the filter can start to mold, causing odors. Have it replaced every 15,000 miles! Brake Fluid Flush: Brake fluid absorbs moisture from the atmosphere, lowering the boiling point of the brake fluid, resulting in a soft brake pedal. Longer stopping distances, and can also cause internal corrosion on the master cylinder, anti-lock brake module, and calipers. This should be checked at about 30,000 miles. Fuel Injection/Induction C ... read more

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Maintenance

The Maintenance Free Myth

Sometimes we hear Albert Lea auto owners say, "What's up with all this maintenance stuff? Modern cars just don't break down." While it is true that today's cars and trucks are extremely reliable, they are also becoming increasingly complicated and use more exotic materials than ever before. All that complexity demands higher tolerances for everything. For example, most Albert Lea motorists don't realize how high tech automotive fluids have become. Fluids like, engine oil, transmission fluid, coolant and brake fluid. Did you know that a modern engine would not run for more than a few months using motor oil formulas from 30 years ago? Today's automotive fluids contain a much higher percentage of additives to protect your vehicle's components from premature wear and corrosion. Time and miles march on for all of our cars. Please don't think we're using scare tactics to get you to take care of your maintenance - but here are some personal stories from AutoNetTV staf ... read more

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Maintenance

Severe Service Requirements

A lot of Albert Lea drivers have asked whether or not they should use their severe service maintenance schedule, which is listed in their car owners' manual. It can be somewhat confusing, so we decided to consult an expert. Cricket Killingsworth is from QMI/Heartland, a manufacturer of automotive products and fluids. She's been in the automotive business for 24 years and is a speaker, a trainer, and a writer. Cricket says there's so much confusion on this topic because, "Most owners' manuals actually have two maintenance schedules. Sometimes these are called 'regular service' and 'severe service'. Sometimes they're simply called Schedule 1 and Schedule 2. A severe service schedule recommends that things like an oil change, air filter replacement, and transmission service be done more often: either in fewer miles or in less time." Foreign and domestic auto makers create a specific schedule for each vehicle they manufacture. So there isn't one generic sc ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance