Monthly Archives: November 2017

Timing chain - making sure that everything is synced up properly

As your engine runs, the intake valves need to open up to allow air into the engine. They remain closed while the air and fuel is compressed and ignited, powering the piston. Then the exhaust valves open to release the exhaust. This all has to be timed very precisely. It is the job of the timing belt or timing chain to make sure all of this is synced up properly. Timing belts are made of a very tough compound that can last for a long time. Timing chains are made of metal and last for a very long time as well. If your vehicle has a timing belt, your vehicle's owner's manual has a schedule for replacing the belt. If your vehicle has a timing chain, there may not be a specified schedule for replacing it, but that doesn't mean that the timing chain system is indestructible and never needs attention. For example, the chain runs on sprockets on the crankshaft and the camshafts. A broken tooth on a sprocket can cause the chain to slip a little. When timing is off a little your e ... read more

Engine air filter - What cleans the air before it's burned in your engine

Engine air filter - What cleans the air before it's burned in your engine

Today we want to talk about your engine air filter. That's the filter that cleans the air before it's burned in your engine. Many people in Gilbert wonder how often they should change their engine air filter. The simple answer is "when it's dirty." That's a function of how much air has passed through the filter, so your vehicle manufacturer will recommend a mileage interval for replacing the air filter. But you can imagine that how dirty the air is would affect how quickly the filter gets filled. If you drive in Gilbert where there's lots of dust, pollution or pollen, your engine air filter will get dirty more quickly and need to be changed sooner. That's why we check the air filter with every full-service oil change at Spectrum Car Care Center. We can visually tell if the filter needs to be changed. Your filter can only hold so much dirt. Once the filter is full, dirt will pass th ... read more

It's that time of year - winterizing your vehicle

Every year, your vehicle needs to be ready for our AZ winter. The last thing we Gilbert drivers want is to get stranded out in the cold in AZ. We need our vehicles to be safe and reliable. It's a good idea to get caught up on any neglected maintenance items anytime – but the stakes are higher in the winter for AZ . There are some specific and necessary things that we need to do to have our vehicle ready for winter. The most obvious is having the antifreeze checked. If the antifreeze protection is not set correctly it can't properly protect your engine, radiator and hoses from freezing. If your vehicle does not seem to be making enough heat to keep you warm, your antifreeze level may be low or you could have a thermostat problem. Get it checked out at Spectrum Car Care Center in Gilbert. If you are due for a cooling system service, now is a perfect time to have it done. In the cold AZ rainy months we always worry about being able to stop in time when it ... read more

The axles - transferring power from the engine to the wheels

Gilbert drivers should know that the axles are the last link in transferring power from the engine to the wheels. They're strong parts that last a long time – but they can run into trouble. Axles just wear out over time and need to be replaced. And sometimes axle seals leak, causing the axle to wear out prematurely. Lubricant leaks out, and water and dirt can get in and contaminate the gears. When this happens you might hear strange noises coming from the axle. If you have a rear-wheel drive vehicle, the sound would be at the rear end. If you have a front-wheel drive vehicle, the sound would be up front. Of course, with an all-wheel drive, the sound could come from either front or back. It might be a groaning sound or clunking when turning. There are different kinds of axles, each with their own potential problems. Your friendly and knowledgeable Spectrum Car Car ... read more

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