Crystal Lake and Barrington Auto Repair

Category Archives: Winter

Check Your Car Emergency Kit

Check Your Car Emergency Kit

It’s a good idea to keep an emergency kit in your car year-round, but it’s even more crucial when winter weather hits.

Here are three essentials you should always have on hand in your vehicle in an emergency:

1. Food and Water. You need a gallon of water per person per day, so Popular Mechanics recommends keeping around 16 small drink boxes (they take up less space than bottles), which have an average shelf life of five years. You can also keep refillable water bottles, but also pack chlorine tablets in case you find yourself with a skeptical water source. Pack good quality high-calorie (2400 to 3600 calories) energy and protein bars, best bought at a camping, sports or health food store rather than a grocery store. Good ones will sustain you for three days.

2. Protection. Pack a wool blanket and chemical warm packs, adds Popular Mechanics. An emergency blanket (also known as a space blanket) is a metal-coated pl

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Winter

How much gas should your car have during winter?

How much gas should your car have during winter?

You may have heard the old saying that you should keep your gas tank at least half full, especially in winter when the temperature dips below zero.

There are arguments both for and against this practice, and your location and driving habits will likely dictate what you will ultimately do.​

It's true that the "old days" it was important to never let your tank get lower than half full. That's because colder temperatures can cause condensation to form in the area of your gas tank that's not filled with gas. The water droplets that form are heavier than the gas so they sink to the bottom of your tank. This is where problems can arise.

Allowing your gas level to fall below half full in winter can cause corrosion in the tank (if it's metal). If the water freezes it can block the fuel line so the gas can't get into the engine. Condensation can keep your car's air pump from staying cool, which ca

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Winter

Check out these winter safety driving tips

Check out these winter safety driving tips

It’s been a cold, snowy winter so far in the Midwest, and unfortunately, there’s plenty of time left for more. With that in mind, the following tips can help you stay safe when you have to venture out in your vehicle in not-so-friendly weather.

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Winter

What you should know about winter tires

What you should know about winter tires

Winter snows have already started in the Chicago area and careful driving is more important than ever.

Do your tires stand up to the challenge?

Most drivers today use all-season tires, which do give a smoother, quieter ride than winter

tires, also called snow tires. But if you do a lot of driving in heavy snow and ice, a winter tire may be a better choice for you. 

Winter tires are manufactured to specifically for cold driving conditions below 45 degrees. Their tread

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Winter

Tags:

Brakes , Tires

Mild winters still play havoc with your vehicle

Mild winters still play havoc with your vehicle

Cold temperatures, snowy and icy road conditions and road salt all can be extremely hard on the many different systems of your automobile. While this mild winter may not have been severe enough to push some of these systems into failure, perhaps they are right on the edge. They may be vulnerable to the first hot spell that's sure to come our way.

Cold and heat are equally hard on components such as batteries and electrical systems, belts and hoses, gaskets and water pumps. Our wonderful roads tear up the shocks, struts and other suspension-related components.

As you drive around, pay attention to the sounds your car is making; it might be trying to tell you something.

If you hear a squeaking or growling sound coming from the engine compartment, you may have a water pump, belt or another accessory bearing going bad. A screeching sound while rolling or braking could be an indication that you need to replace your brakes or perhaps a wheel bearing is on the w

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Winter

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

Helpful Tips for Vehicle Winterization

Helpful Tips for Vehicle Winterization

With winter coming, I think, "What should I be taking care of on my vehicle to get ready?"

This is a question we get asked almost daily these days and the answer is fairly simple; take care of all the needed maintenance and you should pull through the winter weather just fine.

The things you want to pay attention to would be the following:

•Be sure the oil is changed and that you have the correct oil in the car

•Be sure all the fluids are clean and topped off to the proper level. If they are dirty or have not been changed per the maintenance schedule, you should have that done.

•Have a brake inspection performed, including making sure the anti-lock brakes are working.

•Inspect the tires for good tread life and to be sure there is no cracking on the sidewalls.

•Inspect all lighting and replace any burned out light bulbs. If the plastic headlights have become dull and degraded, have them replace

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Categories:

Winter
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