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Q: Will having my vehicle serviced at an independent repair shop void or interfere with my vehicle warranty?

A: Absolutely not. In fact, in order to keep the warranty intact, the factory recommended service intervals must be strictly adhered to. Most vehicles require minor and scheduled service intervals every 7500 miles. An intermediate service every 15,000 miles, and a major service every 30,000 miles. Any competent shop with an up-to-date electronic information system such as ALLDATA will have the maintenance schedule available for your convenience, or consult your owner’s manual.  Also make sure your independent repair facility utilizes ASE certified technicians.

Q: What does it mean when my “check engine” light comes on?

A: The inception of the electronic engine management systems have created a lot of paranoia Among the motoring public with their use of “check engine” and “service engine soon” warning lamps. As a general rule of thumb if the warning lamp stays on, there is no cause for panic. The vehicle is just telling you to seek attention soon. If the light is blinking, a severe engine problem such as a catalyst-damaging misfire is occurring and should be addressed as soon as possible. You can still drive safely, but should minimize your time on the road. Try not to drive the vehicle at high speed or with excess weight (such as towing or carrying heavy equipment). Seek out a modern and up-to-date repair shop that has an OBD scan tool to diagnose the cause of your vehicles problem. The technicians with the proper tools and training will know best how to diagnose and repair your vehicle.

Q: What should I do, if anything, to prepare my vehicle for a road trip?

A: A pre-trip vehicle inspection is highly recommended, especially if your vehicle hasn’t been serviced for awhile. Car trouble, usually a result of neglecting preventive maintenance, can bring an abrupt end to vacation plans. The situation usually means more than just a repair Bill. It can involve towing charges, lodging and possibly a rental car. Add to that the cost of extra phone calls, meals and general inconvenience, and the ordeal becomes expensive. This scenario usually can be avoided with a pre-vacation inspection performed by a qualified automotive technician. The “physical” for your automobile should highlight the following systems:

    Cooling system
    Steering & suspension
    Fuel system
    Electrical and ignition systems

In addition, the tech should evaluate engine performance, tires/wheels, air conditioning/ heater/ defroster, instruments and gauges, windshield wipers, horns/ lights/ mirrors, and all safety restraint systems. Not only can a pre-trip inspection help reduce chances of costly and possibly dangerous road trouble, it also provides an opportunity to have repairs made at home, with one’s Own technician who knows the vehicle. Even more important, it provides peace of mind. While no inspection can guarantee a car’s performance, it’s comforting to know proper precautions were taken.

Q: When do I need to replace my battery?

A: Battery replacement may be necessary if you experience any of the following: loss of power in cold or extended starts, slow or interrupted turnover of the starting motor, or battery discharge light on the vehicle instrument panel is lit. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should have your battery and/or electrical system checked.

Q: What can cause of battery failure?

A: Heat and vibration are the most harmful elements to an automobile battery. However, many other factors can cause battery failure, such as: corroded cables and terminals, lack of electrolyte maintenance, sulfating, alternator/regulator malfunction, and electric shorts.

Q: How do heat and excessive cold affect my battery?

A: Heat increases the rate of evaporation, which causes a loss of water from the electrolyte. Extreme heat also increases the rate of self-discharge and promotes the corrosion of the positive plate grids. Extreme cold dramatically reduces the speed at which chemical reaction can occur, while increasing electrolyte resistance. It is important to keep batteries at a full charge during periods of extreme cold. Batteries in a discharged state are susceptible to freezing, which can cause damage to the plates and battery container. Automobiles demand more from a battery in freezing temperatures as the motor oil thickens and makes the engine harder to crank. Heat is the number one killer of a battery; although it increases the performance of the battery short-term, life is drastically reduced over time.

Thank you for visiting Brant Jones Automotive in Springfield, TN.  Count on our automotive repair technicians for  complete automotive repairs, maintenance, and diagnostic services.  Choosing our team will keep your car, truck, suv, or van on the roads longer and safer.  

Schedule your appointment today (615) 380-8111 or schedule online.