Auto Care & Repair Services Blog Posts

The Truth is Out There: Car Maintenance Myths Debunked!

Posted by & filed under Auto Care Tips.

When it comes to automotive repair work, there can be a lot of information and ‘fake news’ being spread. Like with all myths, some are more believable than others. At Auto Electric, we specialize in car maintenance for the Twin Cities and have learned a thing or two about these types of car facts and fictions. We see firsthand the differences between reality and what people have been told. So, we thought we would take a moment to address some of the most common car maintenance myths and what the actual truths are.

My car’s battery will recharge after a jumpstart as soon as I start driving it. False! It can actually take hours to get the battery fully charged again, especially in the winter. Heated seats and other accessories draw so much power that the alternator has little juice left to recharge the battery. You can actually have a load test to check at your local car maintenance shop to see if the battery will still hold a charge.

car maintenance twin citiesIt is essential to change your oil every 3,000 miles. Not exactly. It is always a good idea to follow the advice in your car’s owner’s manual. Some vehicles can travel 7,500 miles or more between oil changes, it all depends on your vehicle. Experts in car maintenance like the ones at Auto Electric can help advise you if you’re unable to locate your manual.

If your check engine light comes on, it’s likely you only need to check your gas cap. Not so fast. Cars these days have on-board diagnostics. So if your check engine light comes on, you should take your auto to a car maintenance specialist and repair shop like ours so we can troubleshoot the problem and get it fixed before it becomes an even bigger issue.

You’ve always got to warm up your car before driving it in the winter. Although warming up your car does increase your comfort level, it isn’t necessary to the health of your car. Thanks to fuel injectors, you do not have to worry about warming it up to help its performance.

If your brake fluid is low, you just have to top it off. Wait, brakes are important! When it comes to your all-important brakes, you should actually bring your car or truck to our car maintenance and repair shop. We can look over your brakes and put in the proper amount of brake fluid. Sometimes, low brake fluid indicates a bigger problem.

And, these are just a few of the car myths floating around. In order to ensure you get the quality car maintenance your Twin Cities car needs, it is essential to enlist the experts. Call us at Auto Electric at 763-537-1221 or you can contact us to Schedule an Appointment.

 

Keep on Cruisin’: Benefits and Blunders of Cruise Control

Posted by & filed under Auto Care Tips, Auto Repair.

With proper maintenance and care, expensive car repairs can be avoided. Auto Electric specializes in the maintenance and repair of cruise control for Crystal MN and we would like to share a couple of tips that can help you avoid costly repair and safely keep your car on the road.

cruise control

Cruise control is an innovative feature and can be very convenient when on a long drive or on the highway. It allows the driver to set a steady speed so you can relax your foot and let the vehicle maintain its own speed. More modern cruise control systems even allow you to maintain speed and a certain distance behind the vehicle in front of you without having to manually accelerate and brake. There are many benefits to having a cruise control system that works, including less active driving as well as money savings due to increased gas mileage.

When cruise control fails, it can be annoying, but when it fails suddenly it could even be dangerous. That’s why we’ve put together a list of some of the common reasons for a faulty cruise control system:

Failing Brake Pedal Switch. A brake pedal switch turns the vehicle’s brake lights on when it senses the brake pedal has been pressed. Since cruise control systems are designed to turn off when the brake pedal is pressed, the cruise control system is then wired to the brake pedal switch. If the switch fails, the car could think the brakes are engaged and the cruise control won’t work.

Fuse Issues. There is a corresponding fuse which will blow to protect the system if it senses a short circuit. When the fuse for the cruise control blows, it could cause the cruise control to stop working altogether.

Speed Sensor Failure. If the speed sensor fails the cruise control may stop working. You may also notice that the speedometer has issues and that the engine has more difficulty when idling.

No matter the issue, a failed cruise control system may signal that other repairs need to be made soon. When examining the cruise control, one of our experts at Auto Electric will likely inspect other systems on the car as well. So, if you notice that your cruise control is having issues, you should have a mechanic check into it and determine the problem as soon as possible.

Ready to learn more about cruise control in Crystal MN? Call Auto Electric at 763-537-1221 or you can contact us to Schedule an Appointment.

Tips to Keep Your Car on the Road this Summer

Posted by & filed under Auto Care Tips, Auto Repair.

It’s almost summer time and for many of us that means Sunday drives, vacations and road trips! It is important to take care of some routine maintenance in order to keep your car on the road and safe to drive this season. And as an auto service and repair shop serving Valley Place, we see a lot of cars in need of expensive repairs. Here are a few of the most common ways to prevent them and keep your summer rolling along.

Valley Place auto repair

Regular Oil Changes

One of the best and most basic ways to avoid auto service and repair is to make sure you get regular oil changes. Most cars need an oil change every 3,000 to 5,000 miles, depending on the make, model and year. Consult your owner’s manual if you are not sure how often you should get yours changed. Regular oil changes mean your car’s engine is getting the right quality and amount of oil to continue to run smoothly.

Bring your car into a trustworthy auto service and repair shop like ours to ensure it’s done right. While you’re here we will also perform an overall check of your vehicle for things like fluid levels and tire pressure.

Check Your Gas Cap

A gas cap that is broken or even just cracked can cause your car to get fewer miles to the gallon and that can mean you are spending more money on gas for your car than you should be. A new gas cap shouldn’t cost a lot, but it could save you a bundle on gas in the long run. So before you and your family roll out of the driveway, bring your car to us for full auto service and repair and we can fix issues like these.

Tire Care

Check your tires and tire pressure on a regular basis and particularly before embarking on a road trip. Not only is this a safety issue, but improperly inflated tires could also affect your gas mileage. Just check your car’s manual and find out how many pounds per square inch of air each tire should have.

Spark Plugs

If your spark plugs are not functioning as they should be, they can reduce your gas mileage by up to 20%. And, spark plugs that are broken or in need of repair can even cause damage to your catalytic converter which is another expensive replacement job. You generally need new spark plugs every 30,000 to 40,000 miles but, again, you should check your car’s owner’s manual to see when they should be replaced.

So, before you venture on your next summer road trip, take your car to the experts. Ready to learn more about auto service and repair in Valley Place? Call Auto Electric at 763-537-1221 or you can contact us to Schedule an Appointment.

Car Care Checklist: Have You Checked Your Tires Lately?

Posted by & filed under Auto Care Tips, Auto Repair.

Did you know that it is just as important to get ready for driving in the spring and summer as it is to get ready for winter? Winter snow and ice creates pot holes and other road hazards that can cause issues for your car including poor wheel alignment, low tire pressure and more. In order to make sure your vehicle is ready for the warmer weather ahead, we recommend adding routine tire maintenance to your spring car care checklist. We provide expert wheel alignment in Robbinsdale and the surrounding areas, and we have a thing or two to say about wheel alignment, tire care and what you can do to prepare your car for spring and summer.

wheel alignment

Have Your Wheel Alignment Checked

We all know that one of the worst parts of winter isn’t the weather: it’s the potholes! Get your car’s alignment checked by a reputable automotive service and repair shop, like Auto Electric. Potholes can affect the alignment of your car, and that can cause a host of other problems.

Wheel alignment can affect the overall functionality and efficiency of your car. When your wheels are knocked out of alignment by poorly maintained roads or pot holes, it can cause your tires to wear out quickly and even affect the way your car drives as well as its gas mileage. So, if you notice uneven tire wear, a feeling of wandering or a vibrating steering wheel; these could all be signs you need wheel alignment.

Bring your vehicle in to Auto Electric and we can inspect your wheel alignment and repair it for you if needed.

While You’re at it, Have Your Tires Assessed Too

Winter weather can often deflate your tires. Tire pressure can drop about one pound per square inch for every 10 degrees the temperature drops. Driving on underinflated or overinflated tires can be dangerous, especially when those spring showers arrive. While you’re here for a wheel alignment, we can check the pressure of your tires and get them back to where they should be.

We will also check your tire’s tread and rotate your tires. Rotating your tires can help alert us to any odd wear patterns which could indicate the need for wheel alignment or repairs.

Taking care of your tires today can not only extend their life and keep your car running optimally; it can even help you save money in the long run. Avoid unexpected, expensive damage by taking preventative measures like wheel alignment, tire rotation and more.

Do you need trustworthy wheel alignment in Robbinsdale? Call Auto Electric at 763-537-1221 or you can contact us to Schedule an Appointment.

Signs Your Car May Require Electrical Repair

Posted by & filed under Auto Care Tips, Auto Repair.

It is important to get ready for driving in the spring and summer weather and your car’s electrical systems play a major role in the overall well being of your car. This is definitely one area where you should rely on the expertise of professionals to determine the problem and recommend the best electrical repair solution to fix it. Electrical issues can be complicated and require the use of specialized equipment to diagnose the root cause of the problem. At Auto Electric, we specialize in electrical repair in the Twin Cities and we have a few recommendations on how to tell if your car is experiencing electrical issues.

1. Dim, Yet Functioning Lights
Have you noticed that your dashboard or headlights are dimmer than usual? If your headlights or dashboard appear less bright when driving at low speeds or idling, there could be an issue with the battery, voltage regulator or alternator. To pinpoint the issue, it is best to bring your car into Auto Electric for a diagnosis and electrical repair. Determining the source of these types of issues is no do-it-yourself project.

electrical repair

2. Problems Starting Your Car
This is an obvious and common issue that often requires electrical repair. If your car won’t start, there is a pretty good chance it could be the battery, alternator or the starter. Look to see if your interior lights come on when you go to start the car; if this is a big negative, it is likely the battery. If the lights come on but your car still doesn’t start, then this is likely an alternator-related issue. Or, if you hear a clicking sound it could be the starter. Whatever type of electrical repair you require, Auto Electric can help get your car back up and running. Just bring it in to us and we will diagnose the issue for expert electrical repair.

3. New Bulbs But Brake Lights Still Don’t Work
If you’ve already tried replacing your brake light bulbs and they still won’t work, you could have a fuse problem. This is another electrical repair issue that can be dealt with by the professionals as the fuse will likely need to be repaired or replaced.

4. Loose Spark Plugs, Alternator Belt Cracks, Etc
In addition to the above issues, there are also many other problems that could require electrical repair. From loose or old spark plugs, faulty ignition system, loose battery cables and more; it can be difficult to know the exact source of your car’s electrical-related issues.

Not sure what’s causing your electrical problems and interested in electrical repair in the Twin Cities? Call Auto Electric at 763-537-1221 or you can Contact Us to schedule an appointment.