AUTONET TV


Archive for July 2014

Check Engine Light Diagnosis at Auto Authority LLC

Posted July 31, 2014 12:00 PM

Hello Oshkosh . Have you ever had your Check Engine light come on? Did you panic? Or just scowl and ignore it? What should you do? Pull to the side of the road and call a tow truck? Or just keep driving? What does that little light really mean for Oshkosh drivers?

First of all, the Check Engine or Service Engine light does indicate that something is wrong. That's why it is called a warning light. But the something that is wrong might be a loose gas cap, or it might be serious vehicle engine trouble. That's why Oshkosh residents often don't know how to respond to it.

The Check Engine light has two modes: it flashes or it stays on. A flashing light is serious. You need to get your vehicle to Auto Authority LLC in Oshkosh ASAP. No, you don't need to call a tow truck, but, yes, you can't wait to get your car serviced. If your Check Engine light is on and flashing, you should not tow trailers, haul heavy loads or drive at Wisconsin freeway speeds. Any of these could lead to serious damage that could result in repair bills for Oshkosh drivers who ignore it.

steady Check Engine light is less serious, but that doesn't mean it can be ignored. You should plan to get your vehicle inspected at your local Oshkosh automotive service center at the first realistic opportunity. Not the first convenient opportunity, but the first realistic one.

Modern automobiles have a computer in the engine that monitors and controls many of the engine functions. When the computer senses something wrong, it first tries to fix the problem itself by adjusting the vehicle engine. If the problem persists, the computer signals the Check Engine light to come on.

This process stores a trouble code inside the vehicle engine's computer. Your service advisor at Auto Authority LLC scans the computer and reads the code. This does not tell the technician exactly what is wrong with the car, but it gives him a good idea as to where to start looking.

Of course, the best thing to do is to keep that pesky Check Engine light from coming on in the first place. Good vehicle care and routine preventive maintenance go a long way to keeping your vehicle out of your Oshkosh auto repair shop. But, if that light does come on, be smart. Take care of the problem early, and take care of it professionally.

Auto Authority LLC
804 Witzel Ave
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54902
920-231-1016
http://www.autoauthorityoshkosh.com

 



Go Big or Go Home: Upsize Your Wheels at Auto Authority LLC

Posted July 24, 2014 12:00 PM

A lot of us Oshkosh drivers like our vehicles to reflect our personalities. We're picky about color and body style. We'll customize anything from floor mats to window tints to license plates. One popular way for Wisconsin motorists to customize a vehicle is to get new wheels.

Wheels come in thousands of designs. Custom wheels can add personality, style or sass to a vehicle. Many of these customizations involve getting a bigger wheel.

Fifteen or 16-inch wheels used to be the factory standard, but today, because a lot of Oshkosh drivers like the look of larger wheels, many vehicles are available with 17 or 18-inch wheels. Optional wheel packages of 20 inches or more are also available in Oshkosh.

If you want to upsize the wheels on your current vehicle, however, you should know it's not a do-it-yourself project. There are factors involved in ensuring your wheel change doesn't jeopardize the safety of your vehicle.

First of all, you need to understand rolling diameter. The rolling diameter is the overall height of a tire. If you increase the rolling diameter of your tires when you upsize your wheels, you may have to modify your suspension to make sure the larger tires fit in the space and don't rub in turns or over bumps. If that's more work than you're willing to do or pay for, then you need to maintain rolling diameter when you change your wheels.

It's not as hard as it sounds. Imagine a doughnut. That doughnut represents rolling diameter, so you can't make the doughnut bigger. However, you can increase the size of the doughnut hole. That gives you a bigger wheel. Tires with reduced sidewall on larger wheels will preserve your rolling diameter.

Rolling diameter is important because your wheels and tires still need to fit inside the wheel well. Also, your speedometer, odometer and anti-lock brakes are all programmed to work with a specific rolling diameter. You'll throw off the readings on your speedometer and odometer if you change your rolling diameter. And for your anti-lock brakes to work properly, your rolling diameter has to be within 3% of factory recommendations. While some Oshkosh drivers who upsize may not be concerned about meter readings, throwing off the brake system is a serious safety hazard.

Further, many vehicles in Oshkosh are now equipped with electronically controlled suspensions. Changing the rolling diameter will negatively affect this system as well, which can lead to a less smooth ride and lower handling performance as well as safety concerns.

Your friendly and knowledgeable Auto Authority LLC tire professional may be able to reprogram your vehicle's computer to adjust for a larger (or smaller) rolling diameter.

So to maintain rolling diameter, you'll need tires with a shorter sidewall. These tires will be designed to give the sidewalls the strength they need to maintain ride quality. Consider that doughnut again. As the wheel (the doughnut hole) gets bigger, the sidewall of the tire (the width of remaining doughnut) gets shorter. That means the tire holds less air. The sidewalls have to be made stiffer to compensate for the decreased air capacity.

To improve their strength, the shorter tires will also be slightly wider than your previous tires. But this means you'll have a larger contact patch, or, in other words, a larger area of tire making contact with the road. This can actually increase your handling performance and decrease braking distances. Many Wisconsin auto buffs customize their wheels just for this reason—they want the improved performance rather than looks or style. If you drive a truck or an SUV around Oshkosh, you might be interested in the extra control an upsized wheel can provide.

Now, that larger contact patch still has to fit inside your wheel well without rubbing when cornering or when bouncing over bumps or potholes on Oshkosh roads. This is termed fitment, and you may need a few adjustments so your new wheels will fit properly. You may need spacers so that your brakes will fit inside the new wheels, as well.

Auto Authority LLC tire professionals are experts at mounting, adjusting and customizing wheels. They can give you a lot of good auto advice about wheels and tires and how they affect driving performance and car care. They can help you select wheels and tires that will suit your driving needs and habits.

For example, if you drive off-road around Oshkosh, you should consider a higher profile tire. This type of tire will protect your rims from damage while you're bouncing over rocks. Or, if you tow a trailer or haul heavy loads around Wisconsin, you'll want a tire with a load rating equal to your demands. Your friendly and knowledgeable Auto Authority LLC tire professional can help you with these types of concerns.

Once you've got your new wheels, have your service advisor at Auto Authority LLC see if you need an alignment. You don't want those new wheels and your higher performance compromised by poor alignment. Get the most out of your investment by getting the work done right at Auto Authority LLC in Oshkosh.

Last but not least, remember tire pressure. With larger wheels, your new tires will hold less air and they'll need slightly higher pressure. You'll need to stay on top of preventive maintenance and keep them properly inflated. Be sure to check their pressure at least once a week. If you don't keep your tires at their correct pressure, they will wear out really fast. It will also affect your braking and handling performance.

So smile and show off your vehicle around Wisconsin. Make it all yours. Bumper stickers, vanity license plates, custom wheels — strut your stuff!

Auto Authority LLC
804 Witzel Ave
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54902
920-231-1016
http://www.autoauthorityoshkosh.com



What Oshkosh Automotive Service Consumers Should Know

Posted July 16, 2014 12:00 PM

 

There are some things drivers should know about Oshkosh car service and repair. First and foremost, Auto Authority LLC cares about you and your family's safety. And we really appreciate your business. Auto Authority LLC in Oshkosh wants to build a trusting relationship that becomes the foundation for a mutually beneficial experience for years to come.

Building on that foundation, there are some things that would help you understand the auto service and repair business better. First, it can be really hard to fix vehicles. The days of shade tree mechanics are long gone. The majority of automotive systems are computerized. It takes a lot of training and very expensive equipment to diagnose and repair modern vehicles. The pros who work for Auto Authority LLC need extensive computer training – not just how to run the diagnostic systems, but also searching for the right parts, networking with other technicians to help them with a difficult problem and pulling together a job order that makes sure that each step of the process is addressed.

The threshold for getting started as a technician gets higher all the time in Wisconsin, and there is a huge commitment to on-going training every year. This training takes time and money. It contributes to business overhead. Average consumers in Oshkosh may not realize the business and environmental regulations Auto Authority LLC must comply with. Of course that costs money, too. Like any Wisconsin business, overhead is a big factor.

When you go into your favorite Oshkosh area restaurant, you don't value the meal by what the food would cost at the grocery store. The restaurant has rent, wages, insurance, taxes, utilities, professional fees, equipment, supplies – you get the picture. The restaurant has to charge enough to not only pay for the ingredients, but for all these other things as well while making enough profit to remain in business. If you value the meal and are satisfied with your dining experience, you'll come back and tell your friends.

It's the same for Auto Authority LLC. The value of its service is not the cost of the parts they replace, but in your satisfaction with the results. If they deliver a good product at a fair price, customers are happy to see them succeed as a Wisconsin automotive business.

Contact Auto Authority LLC to learn more about our extensive auto service training.
You can find us at:
Auto Authority LLC
804 Witzel Ave
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54902
920-231-1016
http://www.autoauthorityoshkosh.com

At Auto Authority LLC, we love to see our Oshkosh customers whenever they come in, but we would much rather see them three or four times a year for routine maintenance than once a year on a tow truck. We want to work together with you to avoid breakdowns. Tell your friends and family to come in for their scheduled maintenance too. That lowers our marketing costs and helps keep labor rates down. That's good for everyone in Oshkosh.

 



The Auto Authority LLC Guide to Caring for Your Transmission

Posted July 9, 2014 12:00 PM

Most vehicles have automatic transmissions, yet a lot of Oshkosh drivers only have a fuzzy understanding about what a transmission does. Think back to the last time you rode a bike in Oshkosh. You started out in a lower gear and shifted to higher gears as you went faster. Down shift for hills, stuff like that. Think of your legs as the engine – there's an ideal speed you can pedal and you change gears to leverage the work you're doing.

Lower gears for power on hills or for starting out. Higher gears for more speed. That's what the automatic transmission does – it automatically starts in lower gears and shifts up to higher gears to go faster on Wisconsin roads. And it automatically shifts back down to climb Oshkosh hills, pass or start up again.

Vehicle automatic transmissions have certainly gotten more sophisticated in recent years. They have more speeds than before: the base is four speeds, five is very common.

At Auto Authority LLC, we routinely service transmissions with six speeds and several have seven or even eight speeds. As you can imagine, this means more parts. Any they all have to fit into roughly the same space.

Transmissions are computer controlled these days, with some high end transmissions having two or three computers. Transmissions are engineered to last. But they are also engineered to tighter tolerances. If a portion of the transmission is starved for lubrication, it can lead to failure.

Not enough fluid can starve the transmission, or dirty transmission fluid can clog small passages in the transmission. Then the lubricant is blocked and can't get to all the parts to protect them, so they wear out prematurely. The technicians at Auto Authority LLC see far too many transmissions that needlessly failed due to neglect.

And, as you can imagine, repairing one of these new transmissions at any Oshkosh service center can be quite costly. That's why owner’s manuals have a schedule for how often you should change the fluid and what type of fluid to use.

It's really important for Oshkosh area drivers to carefully follow the manufacturer's transmission service schedule.

At Auto Authority LLC in Oshkosh, we hope you never become shiftless in Oshkosh because you didn't take care of your transmission.

Auto Authority LLC
804 Witzel Ave
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54902
920-231-1016
http://www.autoauthorityoshkosh.com

 



Fuel Saving Tip: Fuel System Cleaning Near Oshkosh, Wisconsin

Posted July 1, 2014 12:00 PM



A lot of fuel is wasted in the Oshkosh area by dirty fuel delivery systems in vehicles.

Let's start at the tank. The gas tank gathers dirt, rust and sediment over the years. That's why there's a fuel filter to clean the fuel after it leaves the tank. A dirty filter will rob the engine of the clean gas it needs to run efficiently.

The fuel intake components get coated with gum and varnish over time. This results in fuel being delivered inefficiently and some of that gunk getting into the engine. A fuel system service at Auto Authority LLC will leave your intake components as clean as a whistle.

The big fuel thief is dirty fuel injectors. They deliver fuel to the engine at a specified pressure and in a particular spray pattern. When they're clogged, the fuel doesn't get atomized the way it's supposed to and doesn't get burned as efficiently.

See your owner's manual or ask your Oshkosh service advisor at Auto Authority LLC when a fuel system cleaning is recommended.

Auto Authority LLC
804 Witzel Ave
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54902
920-231-1016
http://www.autoauthorityoshkosh.com



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