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OIL PRESSURE GAUGES

Oil pressure gauges are no longer included among the dashboard instrumentation of modern vehicles. We now have oil pressure warning lights. Oil pressure gauges act as indicators of the engine’s overall well-being and as early warning systems.

A zero reading with the engine running above idle indicates that the gauge is faulty, the oil level is much too low, or the oil pump (or its drive) has broken. In any case, the engine should be turned off immediately.

For vehicles not equipped with oil pressure gauges, the illumination of the oil pressure warning light (an icon of an oil can) should elicit the same response. Engines that continue to run without sufficient oil will run dry, overheat, and seize.

TIP: Low levels of engine oil may be caused by leaky gaskets or seals, or worn valve guides, piston rings, and/or cylinders that are causing the engine to burn oil.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Oil Pressure Gauges appeared first on Croce’s Transmission.

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Warning Signs to Look Out For

Outside of having your vehicle’s braking system regularly serviced, the best way to ensure it’s long term performance is to understand the signs of brake failure. By knowing the signs, you’ll be able to determine what’s wrong with it and even anticipate when it may fail soon! If you’re not sure what to look for or you’re looking to add to your information bank, Croce’s Transmission is here to help you. Before and during your next drive, look out for these classic signs of brake wear and tear!

Loud Brakes

When using the brakes, it’s normal to hear some sounds at the beginning of your drive, especially if it’s cold. What’s not normal is if you hear a sound every time you use the brakes. Whether it’s a soft squeal or a loud grind, any consistent sound coming from the brakes is a sign that something is wrong. There are three sounds you should pay attention to: screeching or squealing and grinding.

When you hear screeching or squealing coming from the brakes, that’s your vehicle’s braking system informing you that the brake pads are at their minimum level of thickness. Although your vehicle is fine for the time being, we recommend a pad replacement service at your first convenience.

If you hear a grinding sound, that means the brake pads have completely worn out and that there is metal-on-metal contact between the calipers and brake disc. This is awful for the system and it can cause serious issues if not promptly handled. We recommend a brake inspection and repair service as soon as you hear this sound!

Spongy Pedal

When you press the brake pedal, the response and feel should be tight and crisp. Even the slightest amount of pressure should activate the braking system. If you notice that you’re having to press harder on the brake pedal to activate the brakes, you are dealing with a spongy pedal. This is commonly caused by air or moisture being trapped in the brake line, and you’ll need professional help to properly “bleed” the lines. If not handled quickly, the pedal will eventually reach the floor and you won’t be able to activate the system, so please schedule a visit with us as soon as possible!

The post Do You Need Brake Service? appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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HEATER PERFORMANCE

It is very distressing to turn on a passenger-compartment heater and receive only cold air. If there is no sound, it may mean that debris is jamming the fan or the blower motor doesn’t work and needs replacing. Otherwise, the problem may rest with an electrical fault such as a blown fuse, a bad relay switch or resistor, or a loose wire. A blown fuse is a symptom of an overloaded circuit, which requires some investigation to identify. If the blower motor works, but there is no air coming from the ducts, the problem may be a jammed or inoperative air flow control or blend door. Poor heater performance may also be due to a clogged cabin air filter.

TIP: When poor heater performance cannot be traced to a blower motor, the problem may rest with blocked coolant flow through the heater core, low coolant level, a defective thermostat, or a weak water pump.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Heater performance appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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OIL PRESSURE GAUGES

Oil pressure gauges are no longer included among the dashboard instrumentation of modern vehicles. We now have oil pressure warning lights. Oil pressure gauges act as indicators of the engine’s overall well-being and as early warning systems.

A zero reading with the engine running above idle indicates that the gauge is faulty, the oil level is much too low, or the oil pump (or its drive) has broken. In any case, the engine should be turned off immediately.

For vehicles not equipped with oil pressure gauges, the illumination of the oil pressure warning light (an icon of an oil can) should elicit the same response. Engines that continue to run without sufficient oil will run dry, overheat, and seize.

TIP: Low levels of engine oil may be caused by leaky gaskets or seals, or worn valve guides, piston rings, and/or cylinders that are causing the engine to burn oil.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Oil Pressure Gauges appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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TIRE DEGRADATION

While vehicle owners can rely on tread wear gauges and their tires’ wear bars to assess the need to replace worn tires, they must rely on visual inspection to spot surface cracks that also reflect tire degradation.

The fact is that tires are constantly exposed to

  • acid rain
  • harsh chemicals
  • vehicle exhaust
  • ozone
  • direct sunlight
  • fluctuating temperatures

that eventually lead them to lose some of their elasticity and cause them to develop surface cracks.

These small fissures in the rubber compounds may eventually develop on sidewalls or at the base of the tread grooves as a result of overwhelming anti-aging chemicals.

Once they appear, they can compromise safety as much as worn treads.

TIP: “Weather checking,” “weather cracking,” “ozone cracking,” or whatever name surface cracks go by may also be caused by curb abrasion and excessive use of tire cleaner and dressings.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Tire Degradation appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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Noise Under The Hood

When drivers hear unusual or excessive noise coming from under the hoods of their vehicles, it may be indicative of an engine problem.

If a clicking or tapping noise is heard that gets louder as the engine is revved, it may be an upper valve train (“tappet”) noise caused by

  • low oil pressure
  • excessive valve lash
  • worn or damaged parts

This should prompt a check of the dipstick to see if the engine oil is low. If it is, oil should be added.

If the engine is still noisy, a worn or damaged oil pump, a clogged oil pump pickup screen, or a plugged oil filter may be preventing normal oil pressure from reaching the upper valve train components.

TIP: Using motor oil with too thick a viscosity during cold weather can also slow down the flow of oil to the upper valve train, causing noise and wear.

Not all vehicle concerns need major repairs. Most minor repairs can be done in one day. Get your vehicle diagnosed by a professional. This will save you time and money.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Noise Under The Hood appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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A Non – Starter

If a vehicle fails to start when turning the ignition key, the problem could be the starter.

Other culprits

Other potential culprits can be eliminated by turning on the headlights and trying to start the automobile. If the headlights dim while doing so, a bad battery or corroded battery terminals may be suspected. If the battery and battery terminals are in good shape, the clicking of the solenoid should be heard with each turn of the ignition key to the start position.

If the starter or solenoid clicks but nothing else happens, there may not be enough amps to spin the starter or the starter may be bad. If the starter cranks when the solenoid is bypassed, a new solenoid is needed.

TIP: A solenoid is an electrically powered device consisting of a coil of wire wrapped around a hollow, non-magnetic core, which receives an electric current from both the battery and starter and acts as a switch.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Non-Starter appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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JUMP START
  1. If your car battery is dead and someone is willing to give you a jump start, attach the red positive cable clamp to the positive (+) battery terminal of the dead battery.
  2. Then, secure the red positive cable clamp on the other side of the jumper cables to the functioning vehicles’ positive (+) battery terminal.
  3. Next, connect the black negative cable clamp to the working battery’s negative (-) battery terminal; however, don’t connect the black negative cable clamp to the dead battery. Instead, attach it to an unpainted, metal part of the car.
  4. Start the working vehicle then wait a minute.
  5. Start the dead car.
  6. Once the dead vehicle is running, disconnect the cables starting with the black clamps.

TIP: When jump starting a vehicle, do not let the clamps touch each other while any part of the cables is still attached to a car.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Jump Start appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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TEXTING WHILE DRIVING

Texting and talking on cell phones distracts drivers from anticipating potential problems ahead. It is important to take a look down the road in order to chart safe paths around potentially troublesome events.

Once such a problem is spotted, it is often just a matter of taking corrective measures to avoid crashes and other serious situations.

Drivers should use the center of their intended travel path as a point of reference, taking in details from side to side to detect potentially dangerous conditions.

Scanning the road ahead provides drivers with more time to make decisions and control their vehicles. Texting while driving can make this difficult.

Under normal conditions, expert drivers scan 20-30 seconds ahead. At highway speeds, this translates to about a half-mile.

TIP: Texting while driving essentially doubles a driver’s reaction time and makes it eleven times more likely that he or she will miss a flashing light.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Texting While Driving appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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UNEVEN BRAKING

Back when most automobiles were outfitted with drum brakes, uneven braking (often referred to as “brake pull”) was quite common.

But even though self-adjusting disc brakes have become more the rule than the exception, uneven braking can still be a problem. Although self-adjusting disc brakes are supposed to automatically compensate for pad wear, it’s still possible for one side of the braking system to slow the vehicle more than the other side, causing the brakes to “pull” to one side.

Brake pull can be the result of a sticking caliper that is triggered by corrosion that reduces the clearance between the piston and the caliper bore.

A worn or damaged piston seal may also cause a caliper piston to stick.

TIP: Old, dirty, contaminated brake fluid can rust and corrode internal brake components, which is why the fluid should be replaced according to schedule.

Don’t miss a weekly “You Auto Know” automotive tip. CLICK HERE to sign up.

Please drive safely.

The post Uneven Braking appeared first on Croce's Transmission.

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