Welcome to Pickering's Auto Service Blog! Click on any category on the right hand side of the page for information.

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Can You Drive with a Failing Thermostat?

Can You Drive with a Failing Thermostat?

The thermostat plays a key role in maintaining the engine’s temperature. It is a cooling system component that may get worn over time. An old or failing thermostat often gets stuck open or close, which can lead to an array of problems. And in most cases, you should not continue to drive with a broken thermostat.   When the thermostat is stuck open, it lets coolant flow continuously through the engine. When the thermostat is stuck closed, your engine will not receive enough coolant to keep it at an optimal temperature. When the thermostat is functioning, it should open and close at the right time to make sure engine temperatures are always stable. Below are some of the warning symptoms a broken thermostat may display.  Cold Air Blowing Through Heater - If the thermostat is stuck open, the temperature in the engine will drop. The temperature gauge may read as cold even after driving. Therefore, the HVA ... read more

If we could only keep them young and SAFE

If we could only keep them young and SAFE

Tips for Teen Drivers Young drivers get into accidents often because of their inexperience. This fact is especially worrisome with back-to-school right around the corner.  Whether you have a first-time solo, 16-year-old driver or a college bound young adult, there are some things you can do to keep them safer on the road. Though there is more to a young driving’s increased risk of a collision than just logging hours behind the wheel Distractions from mobile phone calls and texts have certainly been in the spotlight recently. Friends who “ride along” can cause driving interference that can also lend to unnecessary automobile accidents.  Combine this with an increase in night driving and driving while experiencing study and activity exhaust, and you can see why as a parent or guardian, there is a very just reason for increased worry. But you may be surprised to learn that it’s not the young adult age group that logs the most ... read more

What are the Signs of Worn Shocks and Struts?

What are the Signs of Worn Shocks and Struts?

Driving with worn shocks and struts can be extremely dangerous. The problem is, most drivers don't know if it's worn out at all because it's not easy to know when it's showing signs of wear. The good news is, we'll tell you the signs so that you know when to replace them. Signs that shock and struts need to be replaced Highway speeds are off If your shocks and struts are being worn down, the highway speeds may not be accurate. Sometimes it may not even feel stable. So if you've been noticing unstable speeds on the highway, look into the shocks and struts! Turning feels unsafe When you turn in a car, it should just turn normally. However, if you feel like your car is lopsided or "tipping" almost, you may have shocks and struts that need to be looked at. Rear end Squats No, it's not the same as a person squatting, but the car can do it if the shocks and struts are wonky. Particula ... read more

How to Get the Most Out of a Gallon

How to Get the Most Out of a Gallon

We know how you feel…gas prices are through the roof!  So now, more than ever, it’s important to do everything you can to make sure that you’re getting the most mileage out of every gallon. Let’s start with some easy “fixes” that you can do by simply changing your driving habits.  Investopedia.com claims that these poor driving habits can affect your fuel economy up to 30%. First you need to know that speeding, braking and rapidly accelerating can waste gas.  And, along with easing up on those pedals, SLOW DOWN.  Mileage decreases at speeds above 50 mph. And, lighten up!  For every extra 100 pounds that you carry in your car, you lose up to 1% in fuel efficiency.  Don’t use your vehicle for long-term storage, leave the sports gear, topper, boxes of items for thrift store drop off, etc. at home until you need them. Smaller cars are more affected by this extra weight than bigger vehicles.  But, be sure that ... read more

Types of Unusual Vehicle Smells

Types of Unusual Vehicle Smells

Optimized car performance needs routine maintenance and servicing. But it also requires you to pay attention to anything unusual, such as smells. Vehicles are typically odorless, except for the new car smell many people like. However, when you notice a different odor in your car, please don't ignore it. Unusual Vehicle Smells and What they Can Indicate Many people dismiss car odor as spoiled grocery in the trunk, a fast-food bag you forgot on the floor, a dirty mat, or the driving environment. Except for the new car smell, you should have it checked by an expert. But, here is a breakdown of unusual vehicle smells and what they may indicate. Maple Syrup Smell While this is usually a pleasant smell that can easily be confused for your snack or lunch box, it may indicate your coolant is leaking from a possibility like the cylinder head, failed intake, water pump, or the radiator. If you notice the smell stronger in ... read more

I Will NOT Be Ignored!

I Will NOT Be Ignored!

There are many systems responsible for your automobile being reliable, running smoothly and performing safely.  While all vehicle systems are important, there are a few issues that should NEVER be ignored. Trent Pickering of Pickering’s Auto Service located in Lakewood and Arvada, Colorado tells us, “Things like a dead battery and flat tires are obvious “cannot put this off” problems. But a main concern that is often ignored is impending brake failure.  Poorly performing brakes are most often associated with accidents, so you should place your brake system at the top of the “get it repaired NOW” list.” Auto problems that you should not ignore: • Brakes.  If you have squealing or grinding when you apply the brakes, don’t wait! Get to an auto repair shop immediately. Grinding could mean there’s metal against metal and that your brake pads are in nee ... read more

How to Summerize Your Car

How to Summerize Your Car

As the fun-filled summer months approach, you might want to get your car ready for the season. Preparing in advance goes a long way in keeping your vehicle running smoothly. Here are some essential steps to make your vehicle summer-ready. Checking the Oil and Oil Filter The intense summer heat can strain the engine and its oil and oil filter. Oil lubricates the engine parts, and the filter traps and captures foreign dirt, debris, and metal fragment chippings. It's best to replace the oil filter and change the oil to facilitate an efficient, powerful, and healthy engine throughout the summer. Keeping an Eye on the Fluid Levels A change in season can cause a reduction in coolant, transmission, brake, and power steering fluid, which are essential in daily vehicle operations during the warm summer. The coolant fluid is particularly significant as it helps cool your car when it overheats. It's wise to schedule a fluid ch ... read more

Trade in Time?

Trade in Time?

How to increase your vehicle’s resale value It appears that the supply chain issues we’ve suffered through in the past are beginning to resolve themselves.  This means that many of us that have been holding off on buying a new vehicle (or new to us) are now auto shopping. The resale value of a vehicle is based on what that vehicle is worth when sold in its current condition. There are quite a number of factors that affect a car’s resale value in a negative way including the car’s age, mileage, cosmetic condition, whether the prior owner was a smoker, number and severity of accidents that have occurred, etc.  Even the vehicle’s color and the number of bumper stickers attached can impact the amount that will be deducted from your traded amount.  But, as you would imagine, nothing affects the value of a vehicle more than neglecting needed mechanical maintenance. The average trade in usually occurs between 30,000 and 50,000 mil ... read more

What Can Cause My Car To Not Start?

What Can Cause My Car To Not Start?

When your car won't start, there are many reasons why this can happen, but it can be easy enough for an auto repair technician to figure out the problem. Here are some of the most common causes of vehicle no-start situations. A Dead Battery If your car has never previously failed to start, the problem could be with the battery. This can be one of the most common reasons a vehicle will not start. Leaving your vehicle lights on is a leading cause, and since the battery provides the power that enables the car to run, nothing will happen when you turn the key in the ignition if it is dead. You'll need a jumpstart to get your vehicle running. Failing Starter Motor Certain noises your vehicle makes can tell you a lot about an issue. For example, when you try to turn the key in the ignition, and it only makes a clicking sound, or a series of clicks, your car's starter is triggering but not engaging with the flywheel. This means your vehicle coulb be due for a starter replaceme ... read more

It’s All About Alignment

It’s All About Alignment

Spring is right around the ­­­corner…and so is the next pothole that might cause you and your vehicle “a HOLE” lot of problems. Just like your chiropractor knows that everything must be in proper alignment for optimal motion and health; the same goes for your car. When your wheels are out of alignment a host of problems can occur such as: diminished steering, advanced tire wear, suspension and braking issues. Brandon Pickering, General Manager of Pickering’s Auto Service offers, “It’s always amazing to me how a person’s health and the health of your vehicle are comparable. Keeping your vehicle healthy by performing needing adjustments keeps your life in motion much like keeping your body healt ... read more

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