AUTONET TV


Archive for November 2022

To Fix or Not To Fix (Tire Repair)

Posted November 27, 2022 9:42 AM

You know that sinking feeling when you realize one of your tires has a problem.  It may be making an odd noise or behaving oddly when you're driving.  You may hit a pothole or curb and one suddenly goes flat.  Or you may head back to your vehicle and discover it has one tire deflated without a clue of what must have happened to it.

With a lot of different tires hitting the streets these days, the issue of whether to have a tire repaired or replaced can be tricky, and we strongly recommend you have a trained technician help you make that decision. 

One of the most common causes of flat tires is picking up a screw or nail in the tread area.  Many of those can be patched and plugged if the puncture isn't more than ¼ inch/6 mm in diameter. Most tires can handle two of this type of repair, but any more and you should buy a new tire. 

If there's a puncture or bulge in the sidewall or shoulder, the rule of thumb is it's not repairable.  The sidewall doesn't have the reinforcements that the tread area does.  In fact, any puncture that's more than a ½ inch/12 mm away from the edge of the tread should not be fixed. 

Many newer vehicles have no spare tires (to save weight and fuel) and instead have a type of tire called "run-flat."  Sometimes, the only way you know they're deflated is when the tire pressure monitor alerts the driver.  Driving on them more than 50 miles/80km can render them un-repairable.  They may be fixable if you pulled off to the side of the road before driving on them too long. Our technicians can evaluate whether they can be driven further or should be replaced.

Other vehicles with no spare include a can of tire sealant and a compressor.  If you use it, tire experts say to have the tire professionally repaired as soon as possible.

If you have had a flat tire, try not to drive on it unless it's necessary to get your vehicle away from a dangerous situation.  Our technicians can evaluate any tire you may be having problems with and recommend whether repair or replacement is the best option. Your safety is riding on your tires.  

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



Your Vehicle's Hissy Fit (AC System)

Posted November 20, 2022 7:47 AM

When you hear hissing sounds coming from your vehicle, you might start thinking the worst.   One type of hissing coming from around your air conditioner may be a normal sound, or it could be a sign of serious trouble.

First - the normal sound.  When you turn off your vehicle, the refrigerant goes from its high-pressure side to the low-pressure side. Some of those noises are normal.  But when it hisses all the time, that's another story.

One cause could be that the refrigerant is leaking.  Air conditioners are fairly complex systems that involve various pumps, hoses, valves and motors.  When your air conditioner is cooling, the refrigerant changes from a gas to a liquid and back.  That refrigerant is under pressure, and there are many places it can leak from. 

A hissing sound can also be a failed valve in your air conditioner's compressor.  It is what controls the refrigerant's pressurization.  It's important to have this fixed fairly quickly after it develops a problem because when it isn't, that can lead to more extensive—and expensive—repairs.

If you hear screeching coming from your air conditioner at the same time you hear hissing, your compressor may be on its last legs. It could also be a defective clutch. 

Any time you hear a noise you haven't routinely heard before, bring your vehicle to us so a technician can check the various components and properly repair the problems.  Air conditioning systems are complex and are best handled by a professional with the right tools and equipment.  When your AC has a hissy fit, let us cool it off and you at the same time.  

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



Let's Clear Some Things Up (Headlight Restoration)

Posted November 13, 2022 10:58 AM

You know how exposing your skin to sunlight can cause sunburn and other unhealthy things.  Sunlight can also create major problems for your headlights.  After they've been exposed to ultraviolet light, acrylic headlights can yellow and fog due to oxidation.  And when that happens, less light can pass through the plastic, reducing the effectiveness—and safety—of your headlights. 

It's not just the UV light that causes headlights to turn cloudy.  Road grime and debris gets kicked up and can scratch the plastic, diffusing the light that should pass through them when they're clear.  Plus, when your vehicle was new from the factory, the headlights had watertight seals all around to prevent moisture from getting into them and fogging them up with water vapor.  Just like clouds can hide the sun, tiny water molecules can diffuse the light from your headlight bulbs. 

Sure, you could buy replacement parts and start fresh.  But the good news is many vehicle repair facilities can restore your original headlights to perform like they did when you first bought your vehicle.  Here's how it works:

  • A technician will protect your vehicle's paint by either taking the headlights out or by taping off the paint near the headlights and leaving them in place.
  • Residue is removed from the headlight surfaces by wet sanding to remove the oxidized plastic.
  • Using special compounds, the technician will buff and polish the surface of the lens so it looks as smooth as glass. 
  • The newly-polished plastic is then sealed with wax or a special sealant designed to keep them operating like new. 
  • If the seals that keep the moisture out of the inside of your headlights have dried out or cracked, they will be restored or replaced to keep condensation from forming again.

Visibility at night is vital for safe driving, and if your headlights aren't performing up to their potential, the less you'll be able to see ahead of you.

There are many advantages of having your headlights restored rather than buying new or aftermarket replacements.  It's friendlier to the planet since plastics are made of oil, so it's reducing the amount of plastic that is manufactured.  And it's usually cheaper to have your headlights restored rather than replaced.

Consider headlight restoration a way to literally recycle those parts of your vehicle.  That seems to be perfectly clear!

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



More than Pads and Rotors (Brake Caliper Replacement)

Posted November 6, 2022 9:54 AM

You might be familiar with brake pads and rotors, two components of your vehicle's brakes that have to be regularly serviced.  Here's another important component of your brakes: the calipers.

Calipers are used in disc brakes, the type of brakes now found in most recently manufactured vehicles.  A caliper is the part of the brakes that squeezes the brake pads against the discs, or rotors, which turn with your wheels. 

There are different kinds of calipers, but the basic principle is the same.  You press down the pedal, brake fluid activates a piston or pistons that squeeze the brake pads against the disc and the friction slows down your vehicle.

While modern vehicles have a warning system to let you know it's time to get your brakes checked, your brake light usually goes on when your fluid level is low or your fluid pressure is low.  But you may have to look out for signals your calipers are the problem. 

If your vehicle pulls to one side when you brake, that could be a sign that one caliper isn't working right.  If you smell a burning odor coming from a wheel after a trip, there might be too much pressure from a caliper.  Grinding or squealing when you brake is another signal that it may be time to bring in your vehicle so we can check your brakes.

One way to minimize brake issues is regular inspection.  Have them periodically looked at when you bring in your vehicle for an oil change.  The good news is brake issues are more likely to be caused by pads or rotors wearing out.  Calipers last a lot longer, but even they will need replacing every so often.  

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



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