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Tag Archives: maintenance

Road Tripping for the Holidays?

Road Tripping for the Holidays?

The holiday season is practically here! If you’re getting ready to visit home, visit loved ones, or simply find your way to a delicious seasonal feast, here’s how to make sure your vehicle is ready to get you to your destination.   Start System       Have your battery/starting/charging system checked. Your battery provides electrical power to start the engine, stabilizes voltage for the charging system, and supplies additional current to the charging system. It’s always good to catch a weak battery before you get on the highway, rather than having it fail while you’re on your trip.   Emergency Kit       If our tips missed something in your vehicle, or something unforeseen happens and you find yourself in a sticky situation, having a kit with all the necessities will hold you over until help arrives. In this kit, you’ll at least want to pack some blankets, drinking water, snacks, first aid, and refl ... read more

Preparing Your Car for Winter

Preparing Your Car for Winter

    It’s that time of year again. The leaves have fallen, the air’s getting chillier, and we’re all ready to get into the holiday spirit! We are excited to gather around the table with family and friends–some that we haven't seen for quite some time. For some, we’ll soon be hitting the road with hopes to see some family. All this sounds great, and it sure seems like you are ready, but is your car? With any road trip, it is extremely important to get your vehicle into your team here at Honest Wrenches to ensure that it is ready for the trip you are getting ready to take. Here’s how we can help you prepare for your holiday travels.   Tires   The only thing between you and the road is your tires. It’s crucial to ensure that your tread is wearing evenly, there’s plenty of the tread remaining, that no road hazards have damaged your tires, and they are filled to the proper pressure. And don’t forget the spare ... read more

Salt, Brine, Sand: How To Manage Winter Road Treatment

Salt, Brine, Sand: How To Manage Winter Road Treatment

The way our roads are treated in Iowa in the winter certainly helps keep the roads safe, but it can sure cause damage to our vehicles. Components such as our car’s suspension, underbody, and the overall body of the vehicle are vulnerable to sediment and debris on our roads. During the winter months, it is extremely important to keep your vehicle washed at least once per week, possibly even more if the roads you drive on are consistently treated with brine. When brine or salt mix with melted ice and snow and get left on your vehicle for a period of time, they become corrosive and that is when the rust really starts to take action.    Why wash your car when it’s going to get dirty again? It’s an understandable question for sure, it might seem pointless. But, the more we can keep our vehicles clean, the better we’re able to protect from rust. When you choose a carwash, make sure that you select one that does an underbody spray. That is extremely crucial ... read more

How often do you need to change my battery

 How often do you need to change my battery

  How often do you need to change my battery?   It’s a great question that we get asked quite often here in the shop. A lot of conditions really determine how long a car battery will last such as driving habits, distance driven, the environment that the battery is in and yes, the quality of the battery. The extreme temperature changes that we experience here in the Midwest certainly wreak havoc on our battery life expectancy. If you don’t do a lot of driving or the driving that you do consists of short trips, the battery really doesn't get an opportunity to get fully charged by the alternator. That will also decrease the life expectancy.    Generally, the life of a battery is anywhere from 3 - 5 years depending on the quality of the battery you purchase. Yes, it’s true with batteries as it is for many other things: you get what you pay for. More important than haggling over battery prices is what the actual difference is between types of ... read more

What to Know About Servicing Your Transmission Fluid

What to Know About Servicing Your Transmission Fluid

  At Honest Wrenches, we strive to educate rather than just sell to our clients, so that we can make the best-informed decision to suit their needs and timeline of their vehicle. We find that transmission fluid service is a subject that our customers have questions on. So, do you need to service your transmission fluid? The short answer is yes.   The myth that if you service your transmission fluid, your transmission will go out, is absolutely false. The job of transmission fluid is to clean, cool, and lubricate the internal components of your transmission. This means that over time, the transmission fluid will lose its lubricity, as well as the ability to clean and cool the transmission so you’ll need to service it so that your system will work properly. This is especially true during the summer months when it’s so hot out, as your transmission fluid will further degrade at high temperatures.   When servicing, flushing, or changing your transmission flu ... read more

Repair or Replace?

Repair or Replace?

  There always comes a point with vehicles where you have to decide whether it’s worth it to put in the time and money to give it the repairs it needs or to move on and buy a new car. With today's vehicles becoming more complex and sophisticated, falling behind on important maintenance in a car can really cause some major problems with some unexpected repair bills.    When you bring a vehicle to Honest Wrenches Automotive Repair, we always follow our 300% rule. 100% of the cars that come into our service centers will get inspected 100% of the time. We will estimate those findings and present them to you 100% of the time.   We do this, not to sell you something, but to ensure you are always fully aware of the condition of your vehicle and the investment required to get it back up to safe and reliable condition. It's then up to you whether or not you want to do any of it at all.    So, now we have to figure out whether or not you should ... read more

Why is Your Car Too Hot?

Why is Your Car Too Hot?

  As the summer months come to an end, a warm car might not seem like a problem. But what do you do if it gets a little too hot? Here are 5 reasons why your car may be overheating that we can help you with at Honest Wrenches.   Failed serpentine belt     Your serpentine belt powers multiple essential systems, like your cooling system. A failed belt means that your water pump isn’t getting power, so your engine won’t be receiving any coolant.   Blown head gasket     Your head gasket is another vital part of your engine and system. A blown gasket could mean that coolant is entering your engine, where it either burns off or leaks out. As the coolant escapes the system, your engine can overheat.      Failed thermostat     Just like the thermostat in your home, your vehicle’s thermostat controls the temperature in your car’s cooling system, regulating the amount of coolant being circulat ... read more

When Should I Change My Engine Oil?

When Should I Change My Engine Oil?

In our vehicles today, our engines are highly complex and under extreme workloads, so the topic of changing your engine oil can be controversial and complicated. Let’s break it down so that you have the information you need to make the decision of when and how often to change your engine oil.     As you know, the engine of your car is absolutely crucial to your car’s operation, so taking care of it is very important. The oil system pumps oil through screens and filters to keep it clear of dirt and debris, it passes through pathways between components to lubricate and keep them protected, then back through to continue the cycle. In short, engine oil keeps your engine functioning properly, keeping components of the engine lubricated to reduce friction, regulates temperature, helps to seal connection points, and cleans as it pumps through the system.    However, we know that car manufacturers are in constant competition with other manufacturers to f ... read more

How to Determine When to Change Your Engine Oil

How to Determine When to Change Your Engine Oil

As we talked about on Tuesday, knowing when to change your engine oil has become more complex as changes are constantly made to new vehicle models. While you may think that relying on your car to tell you when it’s time for an engine oil change is the way to go, your car’s sensors don’t have all of the senses and information that you do. When you check your oil, you can observe and take into account these things that your vehicle does not:   Is the oil filter still working or is it completely soiled?     Your car does not have a sensor that has the ability to check whether or not your oil is still being filtered. Once the filter is full, a bypass valve allows the oil to bypass the filter in order to keep engine oil flowing in the engine. If your filter is full, it might be a sign that it’s time to change.    Color, Smell & Viscosity     Unlike us, our cars don’t have the physical senses that we do, so t ... read more

When Do I Replace My Car Battery?

When Do I Replace My Car Battery?

  Your battery does a lot in the function of your car, especially as more and more features are added into our cars. The battery contains plates that interact with a mixture of chemicals that form an electrolytic solution, allowing electrons to flow between the plates. This reaction and the flow of electrons is essentially the electricity that powers your car. The battery provides the energy to start the engine, provides energy to the ignition system, powers electronics, and regulates voltage. With a dead battery or dying battery, it can’t provide power to start the car, the ignition, or your radio and GPS systems. So how do you know when it’s time to change it?       The rule of thumb is to change your battery about every four years under normal conditions. However, depending on where you live, your driving habits, the condition of your charging system, along with other factors, that lifespan may change.      For example, tr ... read more

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