FAQS About Auto Service and Maintenance

Do you want to know the secret to making your vehicle last a really long time? It’s proper auto maintenance and care, and it’s not really a secret at all. In order to get your vehicle to last you for years, and run in good condition, you must be serious about routine auto maintenance and proper auto care. Not only can you increase your vehicle’s lifespan, you can protect yourself from costly breakdowns and huge repair bills.

Continue reading to review some frequently asked questions about auto care, and perhaps learn a little more about what it takes to protect and preserve your vehicle.

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When Do I Change the Oil in My Car?

Several factors will influence the length of intervals between oil changes and other factory scheduled maintenance. These factors can include the region you live in, the type of car you drive, the type of fuel it uses, your driving habits, its total number of miles, its overall condition, and more. It is best to consult your owners’ manual or a licensed mechanic for specific recommendations. However, the standard “rule of thumb” is to change your oil every 3,000 or every 6 months, whichever comes first.

What Fluids Do I Put in My Car?

There are seven vital fluids that every vehicle requires for safe and optimal performance. These include windshield wiper fluid, coolant, motor oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, battery fluid, and power steering fluid. They all require periodic flushes and refills, and most need to be done by a trained mechanic. You should be able to add your own coolant and windshield wiper fluid, hassle-free.

How Do I Check Car Tire Inflation?

In vehicles equipped with TPMS, a light will illuminate on the dashboard to indicate unsafe tire pressure detection. This light will remain on until the air pressure imbalance is resolved. Those without a modern tire pressure monitoring system in their vehicle are left to use manual tire gauges to measure tire pressure. You can choose between a digital gauge or a “pop-out” style gauge. In order to use a tire pressure gauge properly, be sure to begin on a “cold” car that has not been driven in the past few hours. Then just refer to the manufacturer instructions for a step-by-step guide on how to use your tire pressure gauge.

How Do I Check Tire Tread on My Car?

Use the penny test to measure your car’s tire tread. What is commonly referred to as the “penny test” in the automotive service industry, is a simple and effective method of assessing a tire’s tread. And you really only need a penny to do it. Once you have your penny in hand, insert it into the groove of your tire. If you can see Lincoln’s head, it means the tread is low and it is time to replace your vehicle’s tires. It’s that easy!

Which Side is My Gas 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.

Where is My Car’s Maintenance Schedule?

the first place to look for your vehicle service maintenance schedule is the owner’s manual. Generally, this comes with the paperwork when you purchase your car. In most of the time it’s located in the glove compartment, but it can also be located in the trunk, under a seat, or in a pouch behind a seat. If you didn’t purchase a car brand-new, the manual is usually in the glove compartment. If it’s not there, and it’s not anywhere else, download a generic vehicular maintenance schedule online or visit a bookstore or library’s automotive section. You may also be able to visit your local auto repair shop and get free information regarding your vehicles service maintenance schedule.

Do I Need to Use a Certified Car Mechanic?

You never want to use an unlicensed or unofficial car mechanic when you need work on your car. Additionally, you do not want to blindly choose a mechanic either. The best decision you can make to ensure accuracy, effectiveness, and warranty-standards is to take your car to a skilled, ASE-certified automotive mechanic. See our blog, “Why is it Important to Use an ASE Certified Car Mechanic?” to learn more about the importance of finding skilled car repair work.

Where Can I Get Trusted Indianapolis Auto Repair Service?

Call Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 for professional Indianapolis auto repair and service you can trust. We have been helping Hoosiers repair and maintenance their vehicles for over 20 years, while offering affordable prices and reliable work. You can schedule a free inspection and estimate, anytime! We can even assist with tows! Don’t forget to mention one of our auto repair coupons or discounts to get the best deal in town.

When Should I Rotate and Balance My Car Tires?

A car truck is a highly significant asset in a person’s life. Regular maintenance and care is vital in order to sustain proper overall performance and promote longer-lasting life. One component of every vehicle that requires routine care and maintenance is tires. They are several benefits to keeping up with you are car trucks tires; including safer driving, better handling on the road, increased gas mileage, and much more.

One way to achieve these advantages for your vehicle is to routinely rotate and balance your tires. A common question about rotating and balancing tires concerns how often it should be done. The answer to this question is fairly simple but very important. Tires require professional maintenance and inspection at least once every year.

Continue reading for more details about how often you should rotate and balance the tires on your car or truck.

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The Basics of Tire Rotation Service

Fortunately, rotating and balancing tires on any vehicle is one of the easiest maintenance requirements and tasks when it comes to automotive care. Although it’s one of the simplest, is also one of the most important and valuable. Rotating your tires involves rotating each tire to a new spot on a vehicle so they wear down and even fashion. Many people wrongly assume that entails rotating a tire on a car’s axle in a spinning motion.

The reason we want to rotate and balance our tires is so that they wear evenly as we drive. If we don’t, certain tires will wear down faster or slower than other tires. This can cause problems on the road in various ways. You see, your vehicle’s tires are inevitably going to deteriorate over time as we add on mileage. However, assisting this process in a way that protects your car is important. Also, front tires commonly wear out before back tires because that’s where the engine is located, and the engine is the heaviest component inside a vehicle. This is just another fact that should convince you more about the significance of tire rotation and balancing.

Recommended Tire Maintenance Schedule

When it comes to how often car or trucks tires should be rotated and balanced, your car owner’s manual should retain instructions and recommendations. The common practice is to have your vehicles tires serviced every time you get your oil changed. This is a good way to remember how often to have the service done. As for numbers, it’s typically said to have your tires serviced every six months or every 7,500 miles. Many people are known to wait longer until they reach their 10,000 mile marker to have their oil changed and the tires rotated and balanced. This is also okay, especially for people who don’t drive as often.

Tire balancing and tire rotation is not for the inexperienced. It’s very important that you outsource a professional automotive technician for proper vehicle maintenance and repair. Tire care, especially rotating and balancing, requires extensive automotive knowledge and experience; as well as various tools and complex equipment. Be sure your mechanic is licensed, experienced, and can provide a wide range of automotive services.

Licensed Indianapolis Auto Mechanics

Call Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 for professional Indianapolis auto repair and service you can trust. We have been helping Hoosiers repair and maintenance their vehicles for over 20 years, while offering affordable prices and reliable work. You can schedule a free inspection and estimate, anytime! We can even assist with tows! Don’t forget to mention one of our auto repair coupons or discounts to get the best deal in town.

How to Quickly Cool Down the Inside of Your Car

This summer heat has many people avoiding the great outdoors at all costs. However, most of us have no choice but to commute around town for everyday life responsibilities, like work, school, kids, errands, and more. And in this heat, no one wants to deal with discomfort in the middle of a busy day, especially a sweltering car. After sitting in the heat, the interior temperature of a car can rise quickly, and even reach temperatures higher than the outside climate. Fortunately, there are some easy and effective methods you can rely on to cool down the inside of your car on a hot summer day.

Continue reading to learn what you can do to make yourself, your passengers, and your pets feel much more comfortable when hopping into the car in hot, humid weather.

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Indianapolis Auto Repair and Service 317-475-1846

Consider Your Safety First

As mentioned, there are many ways to cool off the inside of a car on a hot day, most of which do not require any additional costs or major adjustments. The most important part about dealing with a hot car interior on a regular basis is to consider safety. You never want to put yourself, a child, or a pet inside of a hot car for any period of time; even just for a minute. If a car is very hot, allow it to cool down before entering. Also be sure to have clean, bottled water on hand to avoid dehydration and to help ease the discomfort of feeling hot in a car.

Here are Some Ways to Cool Down a Car as Fast as Possible:

☑ Use a Windshield Cover

Windshield covers are available at any local automotive store, department store, home improvements stores, and online. They are inexpensive and come in a wide range of colors, shapes, sizes, and level of quality. Choose one that works best for your windshield shape, and see how well it blocks out the sun during the day. Your car interior will be much cooler with this cover.

☑ Park in Shady Spots

By parking under a tree or in a large shadow, you instantly prevent your car from becoming as hot as it could be on a hot day. Use this habit, along with other methods, to get your car to a safe and comfortable temperature in no time at all.

☑ Roll Down Your Windows

As soon as you get to your car, open the doors and roll down all the windows. While you are implementing other strategies, this allows the hot air to escape and the wind to blow through the car. Allow the car to air out for a minute or two, or however long you can stand waiting. Then if you have it, proceed to turn on your air conditioning, but not to the max setting. See below.

☑ Turn On the Regular AC Mode

Turn on your air conditioning, but not to the max mode. You do not want to blast hot air from your vents. Instead, put your AC on low, and then after a minute or two, increase the speed of the fans. Once you have felt a cool down, turn your AC to your desired, default setting.

☑ Have Your Car Serviced

If you want to keep cool in your car this summer, be sure that your car’s air conditioning is prepared to perform at top efficiency. Routine car maintenance is the best precaution to take to avoid summer breakdowns. Not only will a mechanic ensure your AC is tuned and charged, they will be able to catch and reverse any small issues that might affect your air conditioning down the line. And this is important since no one wants to be left without air conditioning on a hot summer day!

Trusted Indianapolis Car Maintenance

Call Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 for professional auto air conditioner service and repair in Indianapolis, Indiana. We’re ASE certified car mechanics who provide a wide range of auto repairs and maintenance for both foreign and domestic vehicles. We also provide several amenities, such as free written estimates, flexible drop off and pickup hours, and more.

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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!

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Indianapolis Car Maintenance 317-475-1846

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.

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.

Trusted Indianapolis Auto Service at Affordable Prices

Northeast Auto Service

Northeast Auto Service 317-475-1846

Call Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 when your automotive lights come on. We are ASE licensed and certified Indianapolis automotive shop that provides a wide range of foreign and domestic auto repair services, as well as, free estimates, automotive service coupons, and more. We offer quality service at the most affordable prices in town. Request a free estimate, today and see for yourself!

When Do I Need a Car Suspension Inspection?

A car’s suspension is one of the most important, basic components of any vehicle. Without it, you could not perform many of the everyday functions a car ordinarily provides. Problems with a vehicle’s suspension should be caught early on to stop small issues from becoming larger, costlier, and more dangerous. So at which times would a driver need to have their suspension checked? And how often do vehicles require regular suspension maintenance?

Continue reading to find out!

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Indianapolis Car Suspension Repair 317-475-1846

Poor Tire Performance and Knocking Noises

When tires begin to show wear and tear, or you notice a knocking noise coming from your vehicle’s undercarriage, it may be a sign that your vehicle needs alignment work. This is a prime example of when to have your suspension inspected. Of course, this is typically included in a standard alignment job; which includes proper suspension configuration, component adjustments, tire balancing and rotating, and more.

Frequent Commuting

For people who drive often, or commute long distances on a daily basis, they will need realignment services on a more frequent basis. You can test your realignment needs with a simple drive test; just drive slowly with intent to come to a stop, and as you slow down to a crawl speed, take your hands off the wheel and check if the car begins to veer one way or another. If the wheel veers to the right or left, the vehicle needs realignment and suspension services.

Difficulty Steering or Taking Turns

You may also need suspension work if your wheel is hard to turn in a certain direction when navigating. Knocking sounds can be caused from loose bolts in the undercarriage, which would need to be removed by a licensed Indianapolis automotive repair shop or mechanic. Additional signs indicate needed suspension work or car repair, such as excessive bouncing, swaying, vibrating steering wheel, and reduced braking ability.

Car Wrecks

Another example of when a car suspension should be serviced or inspected is after a collision or accident. Many people only see the exterior physical damages caused to their vehicles after a fender bender or minor car accident; but there could be more problems beneath the surface. You see, when a car collides with another, the vehicle’s alignment absorbs the impact. This can affect the struts, shocks, tires, and more. Metal within the undercarriage can bend from the momentum of the impact, causing the framework to weaken and problems with the suspension. It is important to have a vehicle inspected by a licensed Indianapolis auto mechanic to ensure accurate industry diagnostics and repair.

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