Which Side is My Gas Tank On?

On the learning curve of driving a car, many of us have experienced that panicky rush after pulling up to the gas station and not remembering which side the gas tank is located on. Well, if this is still something you struggle with today, you will be glad to learn that there is a simple and quick way to remind yourself which side of the car is the side you fuel up on!

Continue reading to learn why some gas tanks are on the left side of cars and some are on the right, as well as, how to determine where your gas tank door is without having to get out of your vehicle.

Fuel System Service Repair 317-475-1846
Fuel System Service Repair 317-475-1846

Fuel Tank Doors

Automobile manufacturers design vehicles with the fuel tank both the left and right sides of the vehicle. The preference of left or right is largely influence by country or region. For instance, in America, we drive sitting in the left side of the car; so, most drivers prefer for the fuel tank door to be on the same side because it is easier to pull the left fender closer to the gas tank. In contrast, Europeans drive on the right side of a vehicle, and accordingly, it is common for European automobile manufacturers to place the fuel tank on the left side of the car.

More so than regional preference, the decision to put the fuel tank on the left or right side depends on the position of the components beneath the vehicle since it is difficult to route the filler tube to the same side on every vehicle. You see, if a vehicle is designed with large mechanism on the left beneath its carriage, such as a speaker, automotive engineers will put the fuel tank on the right where there is more room. So, when it comes to fuel tank position, it is not a random decision; there are various factors that influence where a fuel tank will be positioned within a vehicle.

Which Side is Your Tank On?

If you want to prevent the onset panic of pulling up to a gas pump and being unsure of which side your fuel tank is on, simply look at the gas pump icon on your dashboard. Near the fuel gauge or icon, you will see a small arrow, usually without a handle, like these “ƒ„.” Whichever side the point is facing is the side your fuel tank door is on! Now you will never have to worry about this problem, no matter which car or truck you drive in the future!

Fuel System Maintenance

It is important to take good care of your vehicle’s overall fuel system. Not only can it improve decrease fuel consumption and increase gas mileage, it can also improve your engine’s overall performance. This can also make your car or truck last years longer. Refer to your owners’ manual for recommendations regarding your make and model’s specific maintenance instructions. If you cannot locate your owners’ manual, you can download a new one online.

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Call Northeast Auto at 317-475-1846 for affordable fuel system service and repair in Indianapolis, Indiana. We provide domestic and foreign car repair for all make and model vehicles. On top of competitive prices, we also offer car repair coupons and discounts! Request a free estimate, today.

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Difference Between Return and Returnless Fuel Systems

Fuel systems are one of the most important operations in a vehicle. After all, they simply would not go anywhere without a fully-functioning fuel distribution and management. There are two main types of fuel systems, return-type and returnless-type. Do you know which type of fuel system your vehicle uses? If you are ever in need of fuel system service or repair, it is something that will certainly help your overall understanding.

It is important to understand how your system works, and what type of system you have so that you are better prepared in the case of a needed repair or service. Continue reading to learn more about fuel systems, including the difference between return and returnless-type fuel systems.

Indianapolis Fuel System Repair 317-475-1846
Indianapolis Auto Repair and Service 317-475-1846

How a Fuel System Works

A vehicle’s fuel system is in charge of storing, controlling, and supplying the engine’s combustion chamber with fuel. A fuel system comprises of a fuel tank, fuel pump, fuel lines, fuel filters, and fuel injectors. The fuel is stored in the fuel tank until the fuel pump draws it out. From there, the fuel travels down the fuel lines, through the fuel filter, and then to the engine’s combustion chamber by means of the fuel injectors.

In this process, the fuel is mixed with air, atomized, and ultimately vaporized. Atomization and fuel pray patterns from the injectors play a large role in completing the combustion operation. Spray patters vary depending on the spacing, angle and number of holes in the injector tip. Atomization occurs tanks to injection pressure, which is regulated depending on the type of fuel system you have.

Return-Type Fuel Systems

A return-type fuel system is one that is designed with a fuel pressure regulator that diverges the fuel pressure based on the power of vacuum suction from the engine’s intake system. The purpose of the pressure variant is to ensure that the amount of fuel pressure and flow remains equal and consistent when the fuel reaches the injectors.

Returnless Fuel Systems

A returnless-type fuel system is one that is designed to use the powertrain control module (PCM) to regulate fuel delivery. A fuel pressure sensor mounted to the supply rail of the fuel injectors allows the powertrain control module to keep an eye on the fuel pressure. If the fuel pressure and flow starts to decrease as a result of increased engine speed or load, the powertrain control module will make up for the drop by increasing the injector duration and/or operating speed of the fuel pump.

Signs of Fuel System Issues

Below is a list of the most common signs of fuel system malfunctions. If you notice any signs of fuel system trouble, it is strongly advised to take your vehicle to an ASE certified and licensed Indianapolis auto repair shop for emergency diagnostics.

Check Engine Light

Problematic Engine Starting

Slowed or Hesitated Acceleration

Intermittent Power Loss

Rough Engine Idling

Engine Smoke

Smelling Fuel

Indianapolis Fuel System Service and Repair

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Call Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 for fuel system service and repair in Indianapolis, Indiana. We are ASE licensed and certified car mechanics who provide a wide range of foreign and domestic auto repair services, and specialize in major engine and transmission work. We also offer free estimates, automotive repair coupons, assistance with towing, and more. Request a free estimate, anytime.

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How to Eliminate Gasoline Odors

Anyone who has spilled gasoline knows that even the smallest drip will render a powerful, all-consuming odor. There are endless scenarios in which you might spill gasoline. And whether on clothes, textiles, cement, or any other surface for that matter, the smell seems to linger forever, without ever losing a fraction of potency. If you are tired of dealing with overpowering gas odors, learn how to finally conquer them once and for all!

Continue reading to learn some tips and tricks to eliminating gasoline smells in clothes, on floors, and more!

Indianapolis Auto Mechanic 317-475-1846
Indianapolis Auto Mechanic 317-475-1846

Getting Rid of Gas Smell

Did you spill some gas all over your hands while filling up the lawn mower? Or perhaps the can spilled in the trunk while you were on your way home with it? Or maybe you had a little accident at the gas pump, and now your favorite jeans smell like the station itself? What about spilling gasoline on your driveway? All of these scenarios happen every single day to people just like you; but the difference is, you are about to learn how to get rid of gas odors for good!

What You Need

The materials you need to get rid of gas smells will depend on where the stain or spill occurs. Here are supplies that will work well to combat gasoline absorption and lingering odor:

  • Cat Litter
  • Baking Soda
  • White Vinegar
  • Dish Soap

Cement Floors

If you spill gasoline on a cement surface, like the garage floor, just grab the kitty litter. The clay granules of the litter will absorb the liquid and abate the smell. Simply cover the spill as soon as it occurs, then allow the litter to sit for 2 hours, and finish by sweeping it all up with a broom and dustpan. You may want to check with your city’s local laws pertaining to contaminated cat litter disposal.

Upholstery

If you get gas on upholstery, like your car seats or trunk bed, go for the baking soda and white vinegar. Combine equal parts water, vinegar, and baking soda, and then dip a cloth into the solution and delicately rub it into the spill.

Clothing

There is no bigger disappointment than getting gasoline on your clothes. But if this ever happens, just rely on some good old fashioned air, coupled with some white vinegar. Start by airing out the garment outside for 24 hours. If the scent is very strong, soak the garment in vinegar for an hour, and then hang dry outside for a full day. Once the garment does not smell like gasoline anymore, use a handheld vacuum on the affected area, and then clean it with a rag and mild dish soap. Finish by washing the garment alone in the washing machine on the hottest setting.

Need an Auto Mechanic?

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Auto Repair Indianapolis 317-475-1846

Call Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 for professional Indianapolis auto repair and service you can trust. Our ASE certified car mechanics provide a wide range of automotive services for all make and model vehicles, foreign and domestic. Schedule a free inspection and estimate, anytime. Don’t forget to ask us about our auto repair coupons and discounts!

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Can Cold Weather Damage My Car?

With the current freezing cold temperatures and wind chill reports, you may be concerned how the cold weather will affect various areas of your life. From skin and hair, to roofing, plumbing, landscaping, and energy bills, winter weather can bring about a lot of undesirable changes and conditions. But one of the most vital assets that many tend to overlook are cars. Have you considered whether or not freezing cold temperatures can harm your vehicle?

Continue reading to learn how cold climates might affect your car, and what you can do to protect it this season.

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ASE Certified Auto Service 317-475-1846

Cold Temperatures and Cars

There are various ways cold temperatures and winter weather can negatively affect vehicles. Problems with car batteries, fluids, windshield wipers, tires, and more, can arise as a result of cold climates and freezing conditions. Here is more about each common issue, including recommended preventive measures and remedies:

☑ Dead Car Batteries

A common automotive malfunction that can be caused by extreme low temperatures are dead car batteries. Although most modern car batteries are designed to last an average of 3 years and withstand cold temperatures, it is possible for them to lose voltage in extreme or persistent conditions. The loss of voltage makes it harder for a vehicle to start, thus killing the battery.

☑ Thickening Fluids

Another common issue with cars and cold weather is fluid thickening. All vehicles requires a list of specific automotive fluids for safe and optimal performance, including motor oil, radiator fluid (coolant/antifreeze), transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, windshield wiper fluid, and battery fluid. Extreme cold temperatures can cause automotive fluid to thicken, and become too viscous to perform properly. If your car feels sluggish, drives slow, or does not start, it could be due to this issue.

☑ Tire Pressure

Cold temperatures can also cause tire pressure problems, most commonly, low tire pressure and deflated tires. The general, accepted rule of thumb is that a tire loses 1 pound per square inch (psi) for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit of temperature drop. Not only do under or deflated tires perform poorly, they are unsafe and can lead to other automotive problems.

☑ Windshield Wiper Malfunctions

Freezing temperatures means freezing liquids. And although most windshield wiper fluids are specially designed to resist freezing, they can still freeze over in extreme low temperatures. Another issue with cold weather and windshield wipers are motor malfunctions. The ice can cause stress and fractures in the wiper motor, as well as, the blades themselves.

Get the Best Advice for Winter Car Care

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Northeast Auto Service Guarantees the Lowest Auto Repair Prices in Indy

When you need automotive repair services, look no further than Northeast Auto in Indianapolis, Indiana! We offer the best deals and most competitive prices for automotive services in town. Our highly trained and ASE licensed mechanics are extensively trained and experienced in the automotive repair industry. We service and repair all make and model vehicles, from old to new, foreign or domestic!

You can trust that you are receiving the most professional and comprehensive car repair and service when you visit Northeast Auto in Indianapolis! Continue below to learn more about what we have to offer!

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ASE Certified Mechanics 317-475-1846

Automotive Service Coupons and Discounts

On top of having the lowest car repair prices and service rates in town, Northeast Auto also offers automotive repair and service coupons! That’s right! Not only are you going to be quoted a very competitive and low rate for your car repair service, you can use one of their many coupons or monthly deals in conjunction!

This means you are sure to pay the lowest rate for the auto repair you need in Indianapolis. Our coupons are good for factory scheduled maintenance, like oil and fluid changes, as well as, major engine work, brake repair, tire services, and more!

Our Auto Service Coupons:

☑ Any Service of $150 or More – $25 OFF

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The Basics of Automotive Factory Scheduled Maintenance

All vehicles require a certain degree of care and upkeep to ensure proper vehicle performance and longevity.  In order to achieve optimal car and truck driving conditions, a person should take their vehicle to a licensed mechanic for regular scheduled maintenance services, as suggested by the manufacturer.  There are several different options when it comes to routine maintenance for cars and trucks; from oil changes to upholstery conditioning, the services are endless.  Among all vehicle care and maintenance services, there are some that are mandatory, rather than cosmetic. 

Continue reading to learn the basics surrounding the common factory scheduled maintenance services recommended for cars and trucks.

Indianapolis Auto Repair and Service 317-475-1846
Indianapolis Auto Repair and Service 317-475-1846

Oil Changes

All vehicles that run on gasoline require oil changes.  If a car or truck owner fails to change the oil, the oil burns up and several problems can occur.  Overheating engines, engine sludge, and loss of horsepower performance are all consequences of poor oil maintenance.  The oil is what keeps all the metallic parts running smoothly in the engine. Without this lubrication, friction and heat can cause a significant amount of damage in a short amount of time. It is recommended to get your car or truck’s oil changed every 3,000 to 5,000 miles.  Different oils and engines involve slightly different requirements.  Always refer to the manufacturer’s manual for an exact mileage. 

Car Battery Replacement

A car or truck will not run on a dead or dying battery.  Automotive battery replacement is mandatory maintenance unless you drive an electric car.  Fortunately, car batteries tend to last for a while; only requiring a change every few years.  It all depends on how a person drives, where they live, the condition of the charging system, and much more.  When a battery finally dies, the vehicle simply stops running.  There is rarely any sign that a battery is close to giving out.

In other circumstances, a car or truck battery can be wasted away, requiring the battery to be re-charged; rather than replaced.  Accidentally leaving the headlights on overnight, running the engine in a stationary position for too long, and overall poor vehicle maintenance are all capable of burning out a car battery.  Fortunately, replacement is affordable because car batteries are generally less than fifty dollars and you can even install it on your own.

Fluid Flushes and Re-Fills

There are various fluids and liquids in a car or truck that need to be flushed and replaced on a regular basis.  For example, motor oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, coolant, and windshield wiper fluid all need changed and replaced every so often.  An owner’s manual will contain information and recommendations on when to change each fluid.  These recommendations are usually just the bare minimum the keep a vehicle’s warranty in effect.  In other circumstances, a person may need to change a certain fluid more often than another, depending on driving habits and other variables.

Tire Rotation and Balancing

Tires and wheels are important components on cars and trucks for obvious reasons, which is why their maintenance is absolutely mandatory.  Regular tire rotating and balancing ensure a safer drive, as well as, a better performing vehicle.  A good way to determine when to have your tires and wheels serviced is to have it done every two or three oil changes.  Think about the amount of driving you do and the age of your vehicle.  This and more will define when to rotate and balance your tires.

Indianapolis Automotive Service

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6 Signs That Suggest You Need Alternator Repair

If you tried to turn your car on this morning, but all you got were a series of loud clicks, perhaps you are convinced it is a dead battery. However, it could also be your alternator, which is more likely the case if your car battery is still fairly new. If you suspect that your alternator is in trouble, your first step is to take a closer look to see if you can detect any signs a failing alternator.

Continue reading to learn the top 6 most evident signs that an alternator needs to be repaired or replaced.

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An alternator is an important automotive parts because it is the energy base for the entire vehicle. Alternators basically provide the necessary electricity to all the various electrically-controlled components in a vehicle. It supplies the energy to start the engine, charge the battery, and power up all other electrical components.

Over time, parts of the alternator can begin to tarnish or wear down. Things like brushes, rotors, and other internal parts must be replaced periodically. It is best to refer to your car’s owners’ manual for factory recommended instructions for alternator maintenance. In the meantime, it is wise to learn how your car will tell you the alternator has gone bad.

Usually, they do this by demonstrating these 6 signs:

Dead Battery

As mentioned, one of the most common signs of a failing alternator is a dead battery, which is another reason why a failing alternator is misinterpreted as a car battery problem so often. When an alternator is malfunctioning, the battery must use a lot of extra energy, which quickly depletes its power.

Check Engine Light

When the check engine light comes on, it could mean a lot of different things. For this reason, you must have your vehicle diagnostically tested by a professional to determine the exact cause. However, a failing alternator is a possible reason why a check engine light might illuminate.

Engine Stalls

If your engine is stalling on your every time you try to drive your vehicle from one destination to another, you may very well have an alternator problem on your hands. As mentioned, alternators supply the energy needed to start engines and keep them running.

Dimmed Lights

Do your interior and exterior lights seem less bright than they normally do? Headlights, ceiling lights, stereo lights, and dashboards lights are all powered by the energy your alternator supplies. So when the alternator is malfunctioning, the lights are usually one of the first components to be affected.

Electrical Malfunctions

As with dimmed lights, additional electrical malfunctions are often an indication of alternator issues. Things like power seats, power windows, GPS, stereo, radio, and screen displays can begin to have problems, or stop working entirely.

Strange Sounds

As with most internal automotive problems, strange noises are usually a common red flag. When your car does not sound like it usually does, both while it’s in idle and when it’s running, it could be a sign that your alternator needs to be repaired.

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When to Get an Oil Change for Your Car

When it comes to caring for your vehicle, routine and regular scheduled maintenance are among the most vital necessities. In order to sustain the value and performance of your vehicle, consistent oil changes, tune ups, tire rotations, and other factory scheduled services are required.

Continue reading to learn how the frequency of changing your oil affects the overall status of a vehicle.

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Indianapolis Auto Repair and Service 317-475-1846

The Importance of Oil Changes

Cars, trucks, and other vehicles have different requirements when it comes to oil changes. Depending on the make or model of the vehicle, oil change frequencies will differ. Typically, we measure the length of time between scheduled auto services in distances. For example, most manufacturers suggest cars should have their oil changed every 3000 to 5000 miles, depending on the make and model.

Size and vehicle type also influence the rate of which a person should have their oil changed. For instance, diesel engines will have a contrasting oil change schedule compared to a gasoline fuel engine. Larger engines and vehicles burn more fuel, which may require them to have the oil changed more often. Small gasoline-fueled engines get better fuel mileage, resulting in less frequent routine maintenance.

Ask a Pro to Be Sure

The best way to accurately determine how often you need to change your vehicle’s oil is to ask a professional. This could be the manufacturer of the vehicle in question, or a professional Indianapolis auto repair shop or technician. Either way, these sources are professional references that can offer truthful tips, answers, and advice.

Where To Get Trusted Auto Service Near You!

Indianapolis Car Maintenance

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Call Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 for professional automotive service and repair in Indianapolis, Indiana. We are ASE licensed and certified car mechanics who provide a wide range of foreign and domestic auto repair services, as well as, free estimates, automotive service coupons, and more. Request a free estimate, today.

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5 Automotive Warning Lights You Need to Know

There are many types of warning lights that will notify you when a mechanical issue is underway within your vehicle, including problems with tire pressure, the engine, the brakes, and more. The exact types of warning lamps you have in your ride depends on the actual make and model. Older model vehicles may only have one or two types of warning lights, while newer models are typically manufactured to have most, if not all, of the most common warning lights.

The top 5 most common automotive warning lights are for anti-lock brakes, engine, oil pressure, tire pressure, and battery. Continue reading to learn what you need to know about them all.

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Screen display of car status warning light on dashboard panel symbols which show the fault indicators

Top 5 Automotive Warning Lights

💡 ABS Lights – ABS stands for anti-lock brakes. This means when a driver needs to suddenly brake, the ABS system will prevent the wheels from locking and losing traction on the road. It allows a vehicle to retain tractive contact with the road in order to come to a sudden stop. The ABS system is an important one for all vehicles because it significantly reduces the chances of wrecking a car or causing an accident. It is also great for winter weather and precipitation.

💡 Check Engine Light – Most drivers are familiar with the check engine light, also known as the malfunctioning indicator lamp (MIL). When this light illuminates, it could be for a variety of reasons, ranging from minor to serious. For example, a lit check engine light can signify something small like a loose gas cap, or it can signify something much more serious like a needed catalytic converter replacement. If this light comes on, have your vehicle inspected by a licensed car mechanic as soon as possible. It is strongly recommended to not drive a car when the engine light is on.

💡 Oil Pressure Light – This light comes on when a vehicle’s oil levels are low. A car needs motor oil to keep the engine lubricated and prevent overheating. Without proper oil levels, a car or truck can experience significant and irreversible damage to its engine. This is a very costly repair that can easily be avoided with regular factory scheduled maintenance.

💡 Battery Lights – There are several reasons why a vehicle’s battery light may illuminate. It could signify a problem with the alternator drive belt, the slack starter, or complete alternator failure. These are serious and should be addressed immediately before driving the vehicle again.

💡 Tire Pressure Lights – When this light comes on, a driver can assume that their tires need more air. Low tire pressure can reduce gas mileage, but more seriously, can cause tire blowouts, hydroplaning, and car wrecks. Always be sure your tires are in good condition and full of the appropriate amount of air. Never over-fill tires with air because it can cause them to pop or blowout as well.

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Northeast Auto Service

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Top 3 Signs You Need Catalytic Converter Repair

Your vehicle is arguably one of your top-most important assets. Without it, you sacrifice freedoms of all kinds; not to mention the challenge of finding transportation to work, school, and other vital responsibilities. So when your car or truck begins to show signs of trouble, it is critical that you pay attention to the message it is trying to convey. As for a catalytic converter, the same theory applies.

Continue reading to learn the top three signs of a bad catalytic converter, and what you need to do to get your vehicle back to a safe and operational condition.

Catalytic Converter Repair

Indianapolis Catalytic Converter Repair 317-475-1846

In most cases, your vehicle will tell you when it is having trouble with a primary component, such as the engine, brakes, or catalytic converter. In fact, it the catalytic converter is acting up, one of three signs will surely become evident to you. Here is what to look out for:

Check Engine Light

The check engine light is one of those components that gives you anxiety every time it illuminates. Although most often, it is something simple, like a loose gap cap, it can also be a sign that your catalytic converter is malfunctioning. You see, the oxygen and air-fuel ratio sensors monitor the efficiency of your vehicle’s catalytic converter by watching the gas levels in the exhaust. So when your catalytic converter is improperly catalyzing the exhaust gases, it can prompt your vehicle’s computer system to catch on and warn you of the defect.

Reduced Engine Performance

Your catalytic converter is a big partner to your vehicle’s engine since it is a part of the exhaust system. So it is expected to have poor engine performance if your vehicle’s experiencing catalytic converter problems. Signs to look out for include engine stalling, overheating, reduced acceleration, poor fuel economy, and power issues. Common defects that causes these problems are mostly due to a clogged, obstructed, or cracked catalytic converter.

Rattling Noises

Car’s make noise. However, when the noise becomes concerning, it could be a sign that your catalytic converter is on the outs. Rattling sounds should be the most alarming to you. Old catalytic converters, or ones damaged by rich fuel mixtures, can experience collapsed or fragmented meshes, which can cause rattling sounds while driving or in the parked position.

Indianapolis Automotive Service and Repair

Northeast Auto Service

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Call Northeast Auto at 317-475-1846 for affordable Indianapolis catalytic converter repair you can trust. We provide domestic and foreign car repair for all make and model vehicles. On top of competitive prices, we also offer car repair coupons and discounts. We can even assist with tows! Call 317-475-1846 to request a free estimate, today.

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