Crystal Lake and Barrington Auto Repair

Monthly Archives: November 2015

Ice buildup can cause blockage from A/C

Ice buildup can cause blockage from A/C

Q. I own a 2009 Mazda 3 with a 2.0 liter engine and mileage of 26,000. The air conditioning works fine under normal driving conditions. I recently took two long 600-mile trips in 90-degree weather. After about four hours of driving at highway speeds the cabin of the car started to get warm. The temperature gauge read in the usual range but I noticed the air was not blowing at full force from the vents.

The air was cold and the fan sounded as if it were at full speed but only a minimal amount of cold air was coming through. I tried adjusting the fan speed and I could hear the fan motor change speed but not the air flow. After stopping for lunch the A/C worked fine for another hour before the same thing happened. I repeatedly needed to turn off the air for a period of time to get the full fan speed blowing.

After the first trip all fluids checked out fine. I let the car run for extended periods of time and the A/C operated normally until the same thing happened on the

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Categories:

Winter

Performance cars often times need winter tires

Performance cars often times need winter tires

Q. My granddaughter's 2011 Ford Focus SES has traction control and good tire tread. When trying to get out of her driveway, the car's tires just spin on the ice we have had lately.

Her only option is to push the car free of the ice. She has turned the traction control on and off and still has the result. Two other family cars have no traction problems at all under the same conditions.

Any ideas as to what she can do to overcome the problem?

A. When you say the tires have good tread, what does that mean? They should have at least 4/32nds of an inch tread and even at that they might not be the best for traction in the snow.

Typically we recommend replacing the tires at 4/32nds to get the best snow and wet traction. If the tread is low, replace the tires with a good quality all-season tire.

The other thought I have is what type of a tire is it? If it is more of a performance tire you will not get adequate traction in the snow.

Man

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Categories:

Tires

Tags:

Tires , Winter

New parts can cause unforeseen headaches

New parts can cause unforeseen headaches

Q. My 1996 Sonoma four-cylinder does not start sometimes. It can start flawlessly for weeks, then not start. It can happen when the truck has been sitting, or if it was just running. There's no rhyme or reason for the pattern. When it doesn't start it may take only one more turn of the key, or five minutes’ worth of attempts.

I replaced the starter, since it had a few years on it. The battery is relatively new. The connections are all good and clean. One quirk I discovered was, when I tried starting it without engaging the clutch, it should not have turned over, but it did. So I replaced the neutral safety switch. No luck. My next move may be the ignition switch. Is there anything else to consider here?

A. This is a little tough to answer without doing some of my own testing but it seems as though you are on the right track. If there is any adjustment on the clutch lockout switch make sure it is correct. There should be a starter relay in or near the po

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Categories:

Uncategorized

Tags:

new car

Don't over fill oil with new cars

Don't over fill oil with new cars

Q. I have a 2001 Buick Regal which, I understand, should take 4.5 quarts of oil on an oil change, not five quarts. Is the higher amount harmful to the engine? It does read considerably over the full mark on the dip stick when this happens.

A. You are correct on the oil capacity for your car; it is 4.5 quarts. If it is over filled by half a quart, it should not hurt anything, but I would take it back to the oil change shop and have the level adjusted to the proper level.

It is always hard to know exactly how much oil is too much, so it's best to get it right on the nose. While the oil level being exactly on the line is not as critical on your car, it is extremely critical on some of the newer vehicles. The oil level has to be right or it can set computer codes in newer models, and in fact some of the hybrids won't even start.

As long as we are talking about oil, let me use this opportunity to remind our readers not only of the importance of keeping the

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Categories:

Oil Changes
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