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Tips when Towing a Boat or Trailer

Towing a boat or trailer can difficult if you are not used to it. There are some tips you will need to do before towing. The most important thing is to bring your vehicle in. We can inspect it to make sure the parts are efficient. Another thing is that we will make sure your vehicle is up to tow what you need to. This can help to ensure the performance and safety when you drive.

Towing capacity

Make sure to review the towing capacity of your specific vehicle and ensure it is capable of handling the weight of your trailer and cargo you are towing. Also confirm that the trailer hitch is capable of handling your trailer’s loaded weight. Your owner’s manual will show the maximum tongue weight it can safely support. Ensure that the vehicle’s Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW), vehicle weight when empty, and the payload, the weight of all people and cargo in the vehicle, and the tongue weight of the trailer, do not exceed the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR), the maximum operating weight of a vehicle. Make sure to not exceed the GVWR maximum load capacity, which can be found on the Certification/Tire label on the driver’s side or door.

Check the tirestowing

There are several things to check on your vehicle. The first is to check the tires. Refer to the tire pressure label placed in the driver’s doorjamb for proper inflation pressures for the tow vehicle. Ensure that your tires on your trailer are filled to the correct tire pressure as shown on the trailer tire pressure sticker or trailer tire sidewall. The trailer tire sidewall will show the tire manufacture date. Most trailer tire manufacturers recommend replacing tires that are more than six years old. Check the speed rating on the tires for both your tow vehicle and trailer and ensure that you never exceed that speed while on the road. Most trailer tires are rated at 65 mph unless stated otherwise on the sidewall.

Don’t forget the lights

One of the most overlooked parts when towing is the light system. Check that the turn signals, tail lights and brake lights function properly by having a partner stand behind the vehicle while it is in park and you are testing. This will help others know when and where you will be turning. If a light is out, make sure to bring the vehicle in so we can inspect it for you.

 

Suspension Issue Prevention for your Car

suspension

 

The suspension of your vehicle is important. If the suspension is in poor condition, make sure to bring the vehicle in. This way we can inspect it for you to ensure everything is working. You may not realize when the suspension has become damaged. More often than not, the suspension is already damaged by the time you notice. Proper vehicle and tire maintenance will help decrease the chance of damage. There are also some things you can do to help prevent the issue.

Tire Rotation

Tire care is crucial for maintaining proper suspension, which is why you should have your tires rotated on a regular basis. Tires wear more evenly if they are rotated every 5,000 miles or so. If you follow the car’s recommended maintenance schedule, you can even have the tires rotated at every oil change. When the tires wear out, though, have all four replaced at the same time to ensure even wear.

Air Pressure

Many forget to check the air pressure in the tires. But this is not something you want to forget. Tire pressure gauges are inexpensive and easy to use. Since tire pressure is affected by temperature changes, you’ll want to test the tire pressure at least once a month in the morning while the tires are still cold for accurate readings.

When a car’s suspension needs repair, there are several warning signs that are hard to miss. The vehicle may bounce or sway, the front end may dip when braking, or you’ll feel the car pulling to one side during turns. If your vehicle is riding rougher than it once was, bring it in. Suspension problems do not have to put your family in danger. Properly maintaining your vehicle helps reduce the chance of an issue.

Regular Oil Changes Will Save You Money On Repairs Help Your Engine Enjoy A Long Life

oil changes

 

Having regular oil changes done for your vehicle is important. You may remember being told the oil should always be changed. But do you know why exactly? While you may know to keep your vehicle maintained, knowing why is also important. In order for your vehicle to operate efficiently, the oil will have to be changed. If you are not sure how often that is, contact us. We can advise you on the correct oil change schedule. The vehicle will also be reliable, as the fluids will be in the best condition.

When oil changes are needed

Knowing exactly when to change the oil on your vehicle can be based on how you drive. Some factors include how you drive, and the condition of the engine. Others can be the environment you drive in, and what type of traffic. You can look in the vehicle owner’s manual for the recommended schedule, or contact us. Sometimes you will need to change the oil more frequently if situations arise. If you have jackrabbit starts or heavy acceleration, frequent oil changes may be needed. If you drive on dirt roads frequently it may contaminate the oil quicker. Also, an old engine will burn oil quicker than a newer engine.

The process

When your vehicle operates, the oil has a process it goes through. Oil undergoes thermal breakdown due to high operating temperature. When this occurs, the oil becomes less effective as a lubricant. Without it parts of the engine rub together and wear each other out.

Why oil is important

Oil also contains additives that have the ability to neutralize acids. Over time, these additives get used up and stop being effective. Oil can absorb water, dust, and combustion byproducts and also hold them in suspension. Eventually, the oil gets saturated with this stuff and cannot absorb any more. Then that stuff remains in the engine and can cause corrosion. By having oil changes done, you can help keep the engine operating as efficiently as possible. Always remember to notice any strange noises. If this happens, schedule an appointment so we can inspect it for you.

 

Why Potholes Cause Damage

potholes

Driving in the spring is a wonderful feeling. The snow and ice from the winter is melting. The sun is also out more. But while you will want to drive safely on the road, also make sure you are aware of the condition of the road. If you see puddles, they could be hiding potholes. Hitting a pothole can be dangerous because it will do damage to your vehicle.

Why damage occurs

Damage from a pothole occurs when the tire exits it. With a disproportionate amount of weight on the submerged tire, the force of impact it has exiting the pothole is severe. One of the most common parts that can get damaged are the tires. The tires of a vehicle are always in contact with the road. When the tire enters a pothole, the force on the tires, which is relatively balanced on a level surface, is no longer evenly distributed.

Tires hitting potholes

As the tire drops into a pothole, the vehicle is no longer level, and the weight begins to shift more heavily on to the tire that is relatively lower than the tires on the regular road surface. The damage occurs when the tire exits the pothole. With a disproportionate amount of weight on the submerged tire, the force of impact it has exiting the pothole is severe. As it hits the edge of the pothole, a massive, concentrated force strikes the tire directly. This force, if severe enough, misshape the tire, rupture it, or even bend its rim. Maintaining optimal air pressure in tires can help prevent these types of problems, as it cushions the impact, the fact remains that hitting the right pothole in the right spot can leave a driver stranded regardless.

Other damage from potholes

Other damage you may notice could be dents or leaks. The tires of a vehicle are made to keep it a certain distance above the ground. While a tire is in a pothole, the entire vehicle moves lower to the ground, and the abrupt movement can cause the suspension to compress, dropping it even closer to the road’s surface. If the vehicle makes contact, the result can be anything from scratches to damaged mechanical components. If you hit a pothole, bring the vehicle in. No matter how big or small the potholes are, they can do damage to your vehicle.