Frequently Asked Questions

March 05 2018,

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. My engine makes a knocking sound or a "tic tic tic" when running. Someone told me to change to a higher octane, will this help?

One of the most common complaints of drivers is the engine making an annoying knocking sound. In most cases, an engine knock is caused by too great a clearance between the components located in the valve train. Changing to a higher octane will not assist is the diagnosis of this problem. Unfortunately, a persistent engine knock is one common problem best addressed by a qualified mechanic.

Q. My brakes are squeaking, do I need a brake job?

That squeaky sound produced by the brakes can cause you to crank up the radio volume to full blast just to drown it out, but don't confuse drowning out squeaky brakes with curing them. The squeal of the brakes is caused by vibration of the pads and the rotors, the pads and the calipers, or the calipers and the mounts--or between the shoes and the drums or the shoes and backing plates. Clearly, squeaking brakes need a mechanic to fix unless you are really good at car maintenance.

Q. My check engine light is on but my car runs fine.

When the check engine light comes on and won't go off, it is a sign that your vehicle's computer has detected some problem with the emission system. Determining the exact cause of the emission failure can only be done with a diagnostic scan. However, just because the light stays on it doesn't necessarily mean there is a big expense in your future, because the light can be triggered by any one of a number of minor problems.

Q. My car pulls to one side while highway driving.

Whenever you notice that your vehicle begins to veer off to the right or left when you let your hands off the steering wheel, or you have to physically control the steering to keep the vehicle traveling straight, the problem is a simple case of being out of alignment. This can be easily fixed by taking the vehicle in for realignment.

Q. My car will not start - it tries but doesn't get any further.

If the engine tries to start, but simply cannot successfully crank, the problem is likely related to a bad starter. If you turn the key and nothing starts, not even the lights, that is a sign of a bad battery. If you can start the car, but it quickly stalls, you may simply be out of gasoline, though more likely the cause is a faulty fuel pump.

Q. My air conditioning is not cold.

Very few car problems are more annoying in warm climates than the sinking realization that your air conditioner is no longer blowing out even cool air. If the A/C isn't working as it should, the most likely culprit is a lack of enough refrigerant. If refrigerant isn't the problem, then most likely the problem is related to the compressor.

Q. My car has a rough ride on most roads.

If your formerly smooth ride suddenly turns into a roller-coaster thrill ride when you travel over a bumpy road, in almost all cases the problem can be solved by having a mechanic look over your shock absorbers and struts. If the problem has just begun, a repair job can often return the smooth ride, but in some cases it will require entirely new shocks or struts to get the job done.

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