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Category Archives: Service Tips

Help! My Air Conditioning in my car is not working!

Help! My Air Conditioning in my car is not working!

Here in Vermont we have a fairly short season of hot and humid weather. Mostly we can get by rolling down our windows and letting fresh air in to keep us comfortable. But on those wicked hot days most of us really appreciate having the air condition working in our cars to keep us cool . Trying to explain how the air conditioning system of your car works is not an easy task. This is because it’s fairly complicated and counter-intuitive. Basically, when you push the A/C button in your car, you are starting a chain reaction that removes the heat from inside your vehicle and transfers that heat to the outside air. Once all the hot air and humidity has been removed the air becomes cooler. It can be a real ahhhhhhhhhhhh moment once the hot air is removed & you’re left with cool refreshing air . Here is a more technical explanation of how your Air Conditioning works is from Edmunds.com: There are six basic components in the A/C System: compressor, co ... read more

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Service Tips

Preparing Your Special Car for Winter Storage

Preparing Your Special Car for Winter Storage

Winter is right around the corner. Many of us put away our summer cars once the leaves have fallen from the trees.  Some of you park your cars while you take extended trips out of Vermont once the temperatures dip below freezing. If you store your vehicle for the winter, there are very important steps you need to take so it does not deteriorate while just sitting. First off, never park your car outside and cover it up with a plastic tarp. The moisture under that tarp will cause a big rusty mess.  It is always better park your car in a dry garage, storage unit or barn. Please don’t just drive the car into the garage, turn off the ignition and walk away. There are very important steps you need to take so it does not deteriorate while just sitting. If you are storing it for the whole winter, prior to parking it, take it to your favorite auto repair shop for an oil change. Old oil becomes acidic and if left in the motor, contaminants and moisture will eva ... read more

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Service Tips

Pet Safety in the Summer

Pet Safety in the Summer

Everyone here at Auto Craftsmen loves their pets. Here is some important information to help keep your pets safe during the summer! The summer months can be uncomfortable—even dangerous—for pets and people. It’s difficult enough simply to cope with rising temperatures, let alone thick humidity, but things really get tough in areas that are hit with the double blow of intense heat and storm-caused power outages, sometimes with tragic results. With a Pet Safety Days initiative, you can help keep your pets safe and cool this summer. Educate and Empower Pets should never be left in a hot car. Not even for a minute. Not even with the car running and air conditioner on. On a warm day, temperatures inside a vehicle can rise rapidly to dangerous levels. On an 85-degree day, for example, the temperature inside a car with the windows opened slightly can reach 102 degrees within 10 minutes. After 30 minutes, the temperature will reach 120 degrees. That beloved pet may suff ... read more

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Service Tips

How to Winterize Your Car

How to Winterize Your Car

Winterizing your car is essential to surviving Vermont’s frigid winters. Make sure you can rely on your car to transport you and your family safely in any weather conditions Old Man Winter can throw your way. Why take the risk? Be proactive! Make sure your car is mechanically sound before the temperature dips and the snow starts falling. 9 Steps to Getting You and Your Car Ready for Winter.1. Clean your vehicle inside and out. Have body of your vehicle washed and waxed. This preventative measure will protect the paint surfaces from snowy bombardments, and it will also make snow and ice easier to brush off. Since you will be sitting in your car with the windows up and the heat on for the next six months do yourself a favor and give your car a thorough cleaning ASAP. Remove any debris that has collected over the summer, and vacuum the seats and floor. Dust the dash, wash the windows and clean the upholstery. To prevent that stale air / locker room smell ... read more

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Service Tips

ASE Certification Program for Auto Mechanics

ASE Certification Program for Auto Mechanics

In the United States, mechanics are not licensed. Anyone who goes out and purchases some tools can open up an auto repair shop or get a job at an independent shop or at the dealer. A specific shop or dealer may have a great reputation, but most drivers never know which mechanic will be working on their vehicle.  You rely on your car to keep you and your family safe and get to get you to work, school and all those other places that are a major part of your life without breaking down on the side of the road. Plus it’s getting crazy expensive to purchase a car, maintain it and replace any broken or worn out parts. Cars are also so technically advanced, that it makes it nearly impossible for you to be able to work on your car yourself. I call them computers on wheels. The mechanic or auto technician who is working on your car is essentially a car doctor.  You wouldn’t go to a doctor who wasn’t a licensed M.D. So, how can you be sure the car-doctor / a ... read more

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Service Tips

How to avoid the common summer breakdown: Overheating!

How to avoid the common summer breakdown: Overheating!

If you haven’t experienced it, I’m sure you have passed someone who has. You’re on vacation and the car is packed to the gills with all you need to make a home away from home. It’s 97 degrees outside and the humidity is thick and heavy. You notice the car’s temperature gauge is creeping higher than it normally does. You feel your heart begin to race and you beg your car not to overheat now. It’s a weekend and the road is jammed with bumper to bumper traffic. If the car overheats you will have to pull over to make multiple phone calls and wait for a tow truck to take you to a garage. Being a weekend you know it’s highly unlikely a garage will be open. Who knows how long you will be stuck in some dinky little town, and you may get taken advantage of, and the icing on the cake is… this is your vacation. You will be wasting precious vacation time getting the car repaired. RememberNEVER, NEVER EVER remove the radiator ca ... read more

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Service Tips

Summer Sun Can Fry an Egg on your Dash

Summer Sun Can Fry an Egg on your Dash

Auto accessory company Axius determined that on a 95 degree Fahrenheit day, trapped hot air inside your car can make the dashboard hot enough to fry bacon and eggs! The steering wheel can reach 159 degrees, and the seat, 162 degrees. To keep your car as cool as possible, try these tips: Park in the shade whenever possible. Cover your steering wheel with a towel when you park. When you get into a hot car, open windows and the sunroof to let out the hot air before turning on the air conditioning. Using sunshades, Axius says can reduce heat buildup by more than 48 degrees F. And NEVER leave a child or animal in a hot summer car… it ... read more

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Service Tips

You mean I do have some control over how much I pay for gas?

You mean I do have some control over how much I pay for gas?

Sometimes it feels like a guessing game when pulling up to the pump. Will the number be higher or lower today? It makes it challenging to budget for gas when you can’t predict the amount that will come out of your pockets. Fortunately, if you follow these easy steps, you might find a few extra dollars in your wallet. Do the math. The next time you fill up the tank, record the odometer reading and reset your trip gauge to zero. From then on, every time you fill the tank, divide the miles you traveled between fill-up by the quantity of gas you bought. This is the miles per gallon or mpg . For example: You traveled 300 miles and put in 10 gallons of gas. 300 ÷ 10 = 30 mpg. Not happy with the miles per gallon your car is getting? Check out the suggestions below. Continue to track your mileage use ... read more

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Service Tips

Fuel prices are Rising… Up Your MPG

Fuel prices are Rising… Up Your MPG

Gasoline prices are on the rise again. With political turmoil and natural disasters happening all over the world, I don’t see the price of gasoline dropping in the near future, if ever again. You may not have control of increased fuel prices, but you do have control of getting better fuel mileage on your existing vehicle. By following these steps, you can add miles to every gallon with your coupe, sedan, wagon, SUV, minivan, pickup truck, or hybrid. (More on hybrids below). Slow Down! Each mph driven over 60 will cost an additional 10 cents per gallon. Rapid acceleration and hard braking can lower your gas mileage by 33% on the highway and 5% in the city driving Avoid excessive idling! You get zero miles per gallon when the car it just sitting there idling away (unless you drive a hybrid). Minimize air conditioning! In city driving ... read more

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Service Tips

Hybrids in Vermont

Hybrids in Vermont

Driving a Hybrid Vehicle in Vermont causes unique problems, which are not explained in the owner’s manual.*Cabin Air Filter: If the cabin air filter is clogged in a hybrid, the high voltage battery is cooled less. This takes life out of the big expensive battery and reduces the car’s power and fuel economy. And, just like a plugged vacuum cleaner, a cabin air filter with restricted air flow can’t suck up the dirt. old pads and new pads *Brakes: Hybrid vehicles have a regenerative braking system. This means that the conventional brakes only work when going 5 mph or less. Vermont has an excess of moisture and salt on our roads that cause brakes to rust and because the conventional brakes don’t get used much, they never build up the heat that helps to burn off the rust. Many Vermont hybrid owners are driving around with the bra ... read more

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Service Tips
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