Lakewood and Arvada / Westminster Auto Repair
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Welcome to Pickering's Auto Service Articles! Click on any category on the right hand side of the page for information.

Articles:

Buying the Right Tires and Wheels in Lakewood, CO

Everyone in Lakewood, CO eventually replaces their tires, whether it's because they're worn out or they're just looking for something different. There are so many great tire choices in Lakewood, it can be difficult to sort them out. Let's group the broad spectrum into several categories that will help in the selection process.One category is often referred to as "summer tires". Summer tires are designed to be driven on the road when temperatures are generally above 45 degrees F (7 degrees C). Their tread design is optimized for traction on dry roads around CO and they're also able to effectively displace water on rainy roads.So if you live where its summer all year round, these tires will work well for you. If you like maximum performance in warm weather, but still live where it gets cold and snowy, you'll want to change your summer tires for winter tires as the weather starts to change.There's a range of tires within the winter tire category. If you live where there's a lot of snow an ... read more

Categories:

Tires and Wheels

Automotive Tips from Pickering's Auto Service: Serpentine Belt Tensioner

The serpentine belt tensioner applies pressure to the serpentine belt, maintaining optimal tension to drive the accessories like the alternator and A/C compressor. At Pickering's Auto Service we know that the service life of the belt tensioner is the same as the belt itself, so they should always be replaced together. A worn tensioner prevents the accessories from spinning properly, leading to premature wear and noise for Lakewood drivers.Your vehicle manufacturer has a recommended mileage interval for serpentine belt replacement. A complete accessory drive system service replaces the serpentine belt, the belt tensioner and any idler pulleys your car might have. Your friendly and professional Pickering's Auto Service service advisor can inspect your system and let you know if it’s time for a replacement.Give us a call.Pickering's Auto Service90 S Wadsworth BlvdLakewood, CO 80226303.237.7717http://www.PickeringsAuto ... read more

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Serpentine Belt

Automotive Tips from Pickering's Auto Service: Causes of Wheel Misalignment

When properly aligned, all of your wheels are pointed in the same direction. Your vehicle will track true and handle the way it is designed. Lakewood drivers often associate our wheels being “knocked” out of alignment with an event like a major crash, hitting a pothole, curb or some other object. While these can certainly take your wheels out of alignment, the bumps and bounces of everyday Lakewood driving take their toll on wheel alignment as well. Your car can lose alignment over time with just normal driving. When your wheels are out of alignment, the team of automotive professionals at Pickering's Auto Service in Lakewood can return your wheels to the factory settings. Most owners’ manuals suggest an inspection every year or two.Give us a call.Pickering's Auto Service90 S Wadsworth BlvdLakewood, CO 80226303.237.7717http://www.PickeringsAuto.com

Categories:

Alignment

Time for Differential Service at Pickering's Auto Service?

Hello Lakewood - let's talk differentials. If you have a rear-wheel drive vehicle, your differential is on the back axle. With front-wheel drive cars, the differential is up front. All-wheel drive and 4-wheel drive vehicles have three differentials - front, rear and in the middle. So you see, you've got a differential (or two or three) and it needs service now and then.What does your vehicle differential do? Well, it compensates for the differences in speed between your outer and inner wheels in a turn. Using the dimensions of a typical car, let's compare the distance the wheels travel from the start of a turn through to the completion of the turn.The inside wheel travels about 12.6 feet/3.8 meters. How much farther does the outside wheel travel? About 18.8 feet/5.7 meters – over 6 feet/1.9 meters more. This means the outer tire has to rotate 9 times in the same amount of time that the inner tire has to rotate only 6 times - so the o ... read more

Categories:

Drive Train

Upsizing Wheels and Tires With Pickering's Auto Service

Many Lakewood drivers want to accessorize their vehicle - you know, make it theirs. One of the easiest ways to get a custom look is to get some new wheels. There are thousands of wheel designs at Lakewood area tire shops to get you the look you want. And for many Lakewood drivers, that look includes bigger wheels. It used to be that cars came from the factory with 15 or 16 inch wheels. Now 16, 17 and even 18 inchers are standard. And the factories are offering optional wheel packages up to 20 inches or more. So let's talk about what to consider when you want to upsize your wheels. It's not exactly a DIY project, so you need to know a thing or two before you get started. The most important term to know is rolling diameter. The rolling diameter is simply the overall height of your tire. Unless you want to modify your vehicle suspension, you'll want to keep your rolling diameter the same when you upsize your wheels.Let's think about those three golden doughnuts in front of you. They ... read more

Categories:

Tires and Wheels

Fuel Injection Keeps Getting Better for Lakewood Motorists

Lakewood residents know that engines burn fuel to operate. Fuel is pumped from your fuel tank to your engine where it is squirted—or injected—into your engine's cylinders. This is the function of the fuel injectors.There are two ways to inject fuel into an engine. Fuel needs air to burn, so in the first method, fuel is injected into a port and allowed to mix with airand before it is drawn into the cylinders. In the second method, fuel is injected directly into the cylinders and mixes with air after it enters the engine.Direct injection engines burn fuel more efficiently than conventional engines. Some models can deliver the power of a V8 with the economy of a V6.For example, in one family of engines, the conventional version (a V6) delivers about 250 horsepower. The direct injection version delivers over 300 horsepower and gets about the same . The turbocharged version delivers 350 horsepower.Why the big difference in power? Direct i ... read more

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Fuel System

Why Wheel Balancing and Tire Rotation Save You Money on Tires

Lakewood drivers want their tires to last as long as possible. Two ways to extend tire life are wheel balancing and tire rotation.When wheels are out of balance, they wobble and vibrate. That makes the tires wear in a cupping pattern. If a front wheel is out of balance you'll feel it in the steering wheel. If it's a rear wheel you'll feel it through your seat. To fix this, your technician at Pickering's Auto Service puts weights on your wheels to balance them out.That brings us to tire rotation. The front tires on a vehicle wear out faster than the rear tires. As they push through turns, the shoulders of the front tires wear down. So rotating front and rear tires allows them to all wear at about the same rate over the life of the tire.Proper tire inflation will also help Lakewood folks' tires last longer. Underinflated tires wear more on the shoulder and may even overheat. This could cause tire damage or a blow out. Overinflated tires wear too fast in the middle.Four-w ... read more

Categories:

Tires and Wheels

For Brakes' Sake (Brake Rotor Service in Lakewood)

Think of how much abuse your brakes take. Day in and day out, they stop your vehicle when it's going fast and when it's going slow. Maybe your vehicle has been vibrating when you brake, or maybe it seems like your stopping distance is a little bit longer than it used to be. Then it's time to get your brakes checked out. After all, you have to be able to stop if you want to be safe. Nearly all newer vehicles have disc brakes on the front, and many have that type of brake on all four wheels. That makes it likely you'll be getting disc brakes fixed at some time in your vehicle's lifetime. Knowing how disc brakes work is as easy as riding a bicycle. If your bike had hand brakes, you'll probably remember a mechanism that squeezed a couple of pads on each side of your bicycle wheel when you applied the brakes. Disc brakes are similar; but instead of the bike wheel, there's a metal disc instead. If that disc is warped or has irregularities in it, it's going to vibrate. It used to be that roto ... read more

Categories:

Brake Service , Brakes

Hold the Oil! (Oil Pan Gasket Replacement)

You've likely heard how important oil is to your vehicle's engine. Did you know that there's one part that's responsible for holding that oil so you can use it every day? It's called the oil pan, and it sits at the bottom of the engine. The oil pan is a vital, though simple, part of your engine's lubrication system. Oil circulates through parts of your engine to keep them lubricated. It reduces friction so everything works smoothly. Without oil, friction would quickly destroy your engine. The oil pan keeps that oil contained in the lubrication system, so it's important that the oil doesn't leak out. Since it's a metal part attached to another metal part, there is a gasket between the oil pan and the part of the engine it attaches to. Various things can put stress on the oil pan and gasket, including weather extremes, the speed you're traveling and the condition of the oil. You may drive over a couple of bad roads and kick up debris onto your oil pan. All this wear and tear, heat and ti ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance , Oil Change

Trickle Down Technology

Recently, Nissan introduced the latest version of its Leaf, the company's electric car. It has many new features, including something called e-Pedal. It allows the driver to let up on the accelerator and, unlike a gasoline engine car, the Leaf doesn't just slowly lose speed; letting off the throttle pedal brakes the car in a very controlled way, using regenerative and sometimes friction brakes. With practice, a driver can go for a fairly long time without touching the brake pedal. Another system, similar to those found in self-driving vehicles, can steer the car to keep it in the center of the lane using a camera and radar. It literally watches the lane markers and, of course, doesn't work well in snow that obliterates those markers. But the technology is impressive and can greatly reduce fatigue on long trips. In fact, much of this technology has "trickled down" from research on autonomous vehicles, such as adaptive cruise control that slows down your vehicle (even to a stop) if the v ... read more

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