Columbia and Lexington Auto Repair

Columbia

Mon - Fri: 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Lexington

Mon - Fri: 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Articles:

5 Reasons Your “Check Engine” Light Comes On

5 Reasons Your “Check Engine” Light Comes On

The "Check Engine" light can be one of the most confusing warnings on your dashboard because it offers no explanation as to why it is suddenly necessary to check your engine. It sounds ominous and can be as serious as a malfunctioning catalytic converter or as trivial as a loose gas cap. The main concern when you see the light is to make sure that long-term damage isn't taking place in your engine and that you aren't compromising the safety of your vehicle. The "Check Engine" light is part of the onboard diagnostics system and it indicates a problem with your emissions system. In most vehicles, the light is yellow and shaped like an engine. A blinking light means the situation is usually serious, such as a severe misfiring of the engine, allowing unburned fuel to dump into the exhaust system, pushing the temperature of your catalytic converter to the breaking point. Slow the car down, find a sa ... read more

Do You Know Why Car Service is Important?

Do You Know Why Car Service is Important?

When was the last time you had your car serviced? Don't waste the investment you've made in your vehicle. If drivers understand why car service is important, it is easier for them to pay out the money to keep it up. It is an expense, but the cost of car repair for damage to your engine, transmission, or suspension due to lack of maintenance will be much higher. You really don't save money by extending the time intervals between the recommended maintenance services. Preventative vehicle maintenance makes sure your car stays in good health and prevents costly car repair! A multi-point inspection is a good way to find out if there are any issues with your car that need to be taken care of, especially before your summer road trip! Here are four reasons why car service is important: It increases your knowledge of ho ... read more

Things to Check During an Oil Change Service

Things to Check During an Oil Change Service

An oil change is one of the most important aspects of vehicle maintenance. Over time, oil will become dirty and can cause serious damage to the engine. Here are the steps that a good auto technician should perform during a full oil change service: Drain out old oil, change the filter, and add new oil. Check and refill brake fluid. Check brake pads/ABS. Check tire pressure and tread. Check and refill clutch/ transmission fluid. Check and refill gear oil. Check and refill coolant. Check and refill steering fluid. Check and clean the air filter. Check the crankcase breather. Check the gauges/indicators. Check the battery & clamps. Check lights. Check and refill the windshield washer fluid. Check the wiper blades. Vehicle experts still recommend an oil change service every 3,000 miles for most cars, although ce ... read more

3 Common Signs of Muffler Problems

3 Common Signs of Muffler Problems

Taking the time to have your vehicle inspected and maintained is the best way to ensure that it will keep running as intended with all of its components working together. This inspection should include the exhaust system. Your exhaust system is most effective when it is neither seen nor heard. Unfortunately, that means that it is often “out of sight; out of mind.' Don't wait until you hear the rumbling sounds of trouble before scheduling a maintenance service. Consider these three common signs of muffler problems: Loud noises - When the muffler is in good condition, it will operate quietly in the background. However, if it develops problems, it may sound like a roaring monster. Lowered fuel economy - Having to fill up the tank more often than usual could mean a problem in the exhaust system. Newer vehicles ... read more

5 Warning Signs of Low Tire Pressure

5 Warning Signs of Low Tire Pressure

Because the condition of your tires affects the way your vehicle handles, its fuel efficiency and load carrying capability, maintaining proper tire inflation is essential. The correct air pressure is important because both over-inflation and under-inflation can cause premature tread wear and possible tire failure. If you keep your tires properly inflated, you will reap the following benefits: Reduced tread movement which helps extend the life of your tires, The reduced rolling resistance which increases fuel efficiency, Increased water dispersion to help prevent the possibility of hydroplaning. Consider the five common warning signs of low tire pressure described below: TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System) -- The purpose of the TPMS is to alert you when tire pressure is too low, resulting in unsafe driving conditions, un ... read more

Ask Your Mechanic: “Why is Tire Balancing Necessary?”

Ask Your Mechanic: “Why is Tire Balancing Necessary?”

To help your vehicle drive in the safest and best condition possible, we want to make sure you understand why regular tire service is so important. Many drivers know that wheel alignment is crucial, but they may be wondering, “Why is tire balancing necessary?' Tire balancing is a simple and relatively inexpensive tire service that will keep you driving safely. Experiencing these steering problems? You will have trouble keeping your vehicle from swerving from side to side while driving on a straight road, You will feel every little rock and bump on the road, The steering wheel will vibrate uncomfortably, The steering wheel will feel loose so it doesn't really feel safe. You may be wondering, what does it mean when a tire goes out of balance? Imperfections, blemishes in the rubber, and ... read more

Watch out for the Signs of a Bad Radiator!

Watch out for the Signs of a Bad Radiator!

It's that time of year again when people are starting to plan their spring and summer road trips. A breakdown on the side of the road is always unfortunate, but especially when you're ready for some fresh scenery after the cold and dark days of winter. An important part of your vehicle to have checked out before you head down the road is the radiator and cooling system. Watch out for these signs of a bad radiator so that you're not trapped in a strange town looking for a radiator replacement. The following are three common signs that your radiator may be broken, cracked, or simply clogged with debris and corrosion: Overheating - An overheating engine indicates that the coolant cannot get where it needs to go because the radiator is not functioning properly. Depending on the model of your vehicle, you may see a warning light first, or the temperature ... read more

5 Reasons Why a Wheel Alignment Goes Bad!

5 Reasons Why a Wheel Alignment Goes Bad!

Because car alignment is not an obvious component of your vehicle, many drivers don't give it a second thought until they start to notice steering problems. Their vehicle keeps pulling to the side even though they are steering straight ahead. They may start to wonder about the reasons why a wheel alignment goes bad. Unfortunately, it's a fact of life that misalignment just comes with vehicle ownership. Misalignment is when your tires are not pointing in the same direction as the steering wheel and will negatively affect your steering, suspension, and tires. More importantly, it compromises driving safety. Even though misalignment can occur naturally over time, it's often caused by a specific incident. Here are 5 common reasons why a wheel alignment goes bad: Hitting curbs -- Hitting ... read more

What Does Transmission Service Include?

What Does Transmission Service Include?

Are you starting to notice jerking and stalling when your car shifts gears? Periodic transmission service is required to ensure that your vehicle will run smoothly and efficiently, with all components properly lubricated and in good working condition. A general inspection and replacement of the transmission fluid, filter and gasket will reveal minor transmission problems that can be fixed along the way. However, a lift inspection is needed to find major trouble, such as a pending transmission rebuild. You may be wondering just what does transmission service include?Replace Pan Gasket -- The pan gasket (located around the rim of the transmission pan) can get worn and cracked with the passage of time, leading to transmission fluid leaks. The gasket can be replaced quite easily is relatively inexpensive. If the current gasket is reusable (of high ... read more

Top 6 Causes of Brake Failure

Top 6 Causes of Brake Failure

If you have been maintaining your brakes on a regular basis, it is unlikely you will experience brake failure. However, it is good for vehicle owners to know the causes of brake failure, also referred to as brake fade. Unfortunately, brakes can completely fail, losing their ability to perform. Described below are some of the causes of brake failure: Loss Of Brake Fluid Pressure -- The braking system works with hydraulic pressure. If there is any type of leak in the brake line, caliper or wheel cylinder, there could be insufficient pressure in the brake line for the brakes to work properly. Loss of Air Pressure - If the brake pedal goes all the way to the floor when it is depressed, it means the air pressure in the brake line could be the problem. If the pressure drops too low when driving, the vehicle should no longer be driven. Rusty Brake Line ... read more