Category: Maintenance & Repair Tips

Posts related to Maintenance & Repair Tips

Car Battery Needing a Jump-Start in Snow

There are only a few things that can bring more frustration than your car failing you in the morning. Cold weather can cause your car’s battery to malfunction, and some drivers may not understand why. However, by educating yourself on the facts, you will be able to avoid dealing with dead batteries during these frosty months.

In winter months especially, the sub-zero temperatures slow down the rate of chemical reactions required to fire up the battery and start the vehicle. Moreover, cold temperatures also make it hard for the engine to start thus making it require more power from the battery.

 

Additionally, below zero weather can freeze the battery. While a fully-charged battery is unlikely to freeze, one that is not fully-charged is susceptible to freezing. People also tend to use their cars much less during the cold months than in other times of the year. This is often what leads to a battery [...]

What Does the Transmission Do?

What is a transmission and what are the different types of transmissions?
automotive transmission

The transmission is one of the most important components of any motor vehicle. As the name implies, it controls and transmits power generated by the engine to the wheels. It controls the acceleration and deceleration of a motor vehicle smoothly, helping the engine to run at peak efficiency at all speeds.

Automatic Transmissions

Automatic transmissions come in several forms but operate in much the same way. The transmission includes a system of gears connected to the engine with a torque converter. When the driver places the vehicle in drive and pushes the accelerator, a system of bands and clutches is controlled by a hydraulic system to engage the appropriate gears as the vehicle’s speed increases. The process happens in reverse when the driver takes his or her foot off the accelerator and brakes. Some newer vehicles use an electronic control system to control the hydraulic system.

The other three settings on a vehicle with an [...]

Man's hands with red work gloves replacing changing brake pads
Don’t know how to tell when to replace your brake pads? Here are 4 signs that you need to replace your brakes.

Brakes are one of the most important parts of your car. For the safety of yourself and your passengers, it’s important to ensure that your brakes are always working correctly. One of the ways you can do that is to be on the lookout for signs of trouble.

While the brake light is the most straightforward way to be alerted to the need for brake maintenance, there are some other signs you should be on the lookout for.

1. You Are Hearing Strange NoisesMacs radiator wants to help you replace your brake pads

If you start to hear grinding, squealing or squeaking noises when you apply the brake [...]

checking if car air conditioning is cold, a way to tell if AC needs recharged

Your mechanic may bring up recharging your air conditioning with you if they notice your AC isn’t cooling your car properly. Your car may need that AC recharge if it is low on refrigerant, used by air conditioners to maintain cooling and pressure. A fresh batch of refrigerant, or Freon if your car needs it, will help your air conditioning system keep cool.

When you get your AC recharged your auto repairer will fill up your air conditioning system with a fresh batch of refrigerant to go along with any repairs your AC may have needed, and test your system to ensure your AC is cooling thoroughly. Typically your car shouldn’t need an AC recharge unless you’ve had other repairs to your AC system, but your mechanic will suggest a AC recharge to you if they feel your AC could use one.

Read Our Article: Car AC Not Blowing Cold Air: 12 Causes & Solutions

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car ac not blowing cold air

Your AC not blowing cold air on a sweltering day can feel unbearable. Hot air blowing through your vents could signal a minor or major issue. You could have a leak, clogged filter, cooling fan problem or some other issue. By knowing all of the reasons, you can better explain them to a mechanic or even solve them yourself.

 

Understand the Air Conditioning System

AC systems all run the same way, no matter the make and model of your car. Some systems may be more complex than others, but the basics are the same. The three main parts of the AC system are the compressor, condenser, and the evaporator.

\Refrigerant is the high-pressure gas that is compressed into a fluid. Your car’s condenser removes the heat from the fluid using a series of tubes. A dryer or receiver removes excess water to avoid ice forming inside the car. Refrigerants are exposed to the heat [...]

Auto Engine Maintenance – How Does Your Engine Work?

Learn how a car engine works, and the types of automotive engines
Car mechanic man at the garage fixing the engine. Hands of car mechanic with wrench in garage. Close up hands of unrecognizable mechanic doing car service and maintenance. Auto Service Business Concept. Pro Car Mechanic Taking Care of Vehicle. Checking Under the Car Hood. There are 5 questions to ask your mechanic to make you feel confident in their work

There’s more than meets the eye when it comes to the engine in your vehicle. You may be aware that the engine is responsible for creating the energy to move the vehicle forward, but how well do you really know how it works? What’s the difference between a diesel and gas engine, a four-cylinder versus a V6, or a two vs four-stroke engine? Learn more about how each of the many components and parts that work together to get the vehicle into motion as well as the difference between them, so you can get to know your engine.

Gas and Diesel-Powered Engines

While both engines function on applying the intake, compression and power, exhaust, and air to fuel proportions, each engine functions differently. Diesel-powered engines take air into the combustion chamber while gas-powered engines take in both air and fuel. Power and compression differs as well. Each engine compresses air into a small area, creating [...]

Headlights of cars on a road

When the sun goes down and it gets dark outside, a driver’s ability to see the road becomes a lot more of a challenge. Luckily, all vehicles are outfitted with headlights to help illuminate the road ahead. Over time, just like any light, they can begin to dim or burn out altogether. Driving around with just one headlight could pose a danger to yourself and other drivers as well as put you at risk for a traffic violation. If you’re in the dark about your car’s headlights, we’ll shed some light on everything you need to know about your car’s lighting.

How Many Lights Are Out?

dead headlights on carIf you notice just one headlight out, as opposed to two, you can assume that just one bulb has burned out and requires a replacement. [...]

Top 3 Summertime Car Troubles

Salt In The Air, Sand In My Hair But I Can't Go Anywhere
Summer Car Trouble Overheating

Each changing of the season creates new stressors that can affect the performance of your automobile. Having automotive problems can make you second guess taking that road trip or even a visit to the local swimming hole. What many Portland, Oregon, and Idaho, drivers do is schedule a service appointment at Mac’s Radiator & Automotive Service.

When you schedule any kind of service at Mac’s, they let you know, as a courtesy, if there are any other weak spots in your vehicle that need attention before a failure. Often times, drivers forget to change fluids, fail to top off fluids, or have premature wear in spots that they can’t see. When it comes to summertime problems, it is common for drivers to experience weak batteries, transmission problems, engine stalling, A/C system failures, and overheating.

Summer Car Trouble Overheating

Carbur-What? All About Carburetors

What are Carburetors and What Does a Carburetor Do?
carburetor needing repair

Carburetors are responsible for mixing air with fuel to obtain the correct ratio for a combustible vehicle’s engine. The carburetor also helps to control the engine’s speed when the gas pedal is pressed. However, you don’t hear much about carburetors in cars too much these days, with the advent of fuel injected engines. But, that doesn’t mean they’ve gone away completely. You’ll still find carburetors on small engine machines, like your lawn mower, rototillers, and other such equipment. That leads us to question, what’s the function carburetors and what is the difference from fuel-injection?

 

carburetor needing repair

Carburetors Vs. Fuel Injection How Carburetors Work

The carburetor is a pipe above the engine cylinders with an air pipe and a fuel pipe connected to it.  The air pipe brings in outside air, first through an air filter to remove dirt and other debris, and then [...]

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