Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Maintaining your vehicle during Summer travelsFirst posted on our sister stores blog on July 19th, 2011, posted in: Blog, General maintenance by 0 Comment

Well, it appears that Mother nature is holding out a little longer for the “hotter” weather this year!  She has given us a taste of summer a few times so far this year, however; not the normal we all expect by this time of the year.  I am optomistic that it will eventually get here though. It seems that many consumers are fairly proactive in getting their vehicle ready for the Winter travel season, but not so much for the Summer travel season. Summer temperatures are very hard on vehicles just like the Winter conditions can be, in many cases even worse!
Here is a small list of items to have checked before your Summer travels.
  • One of the most overlooked items for Summer travel is your battery. Heat is very tough on batteries and they will often fail without warning, potentially leaving you stranded.
  • Engine coolant and cooling system components like your thermostat and radiator/heater hoses.
  • Tires, all tires are “vented” and will leak small amounts of pressure, so check them often. The Department of Transportation (DOT) recommends and suggests that all tires, regardless of tread depth, be change every 6 years due to the structural decline of the tire.
  • Cabin air filter. Most current vehicles have a cabin air filter equipped in the heater box to help with pollutants, dust and pollens in your vehicle. This is a much overlooked item so if you have a “musty” smell or a windshield that always seems to be “dirty’ on the inside, it may be time to change your filter?
  • Wiper blades are actually more important in the Summer months than the Winter months. Why you ask? when the wiper blade sits on your windshield and the sun is on the glass most of the day, the sun has a tendency to “cook” the blades and this dries them out. Of course,  most of us do not realize this after having had some hot sunny days until that first rain shower; you turn on the wipers and it almost seems worse than it did before you turned them on!  Wiper blades are reasonable price wise and should be replaced at least twice a year.
  • Don’t forget about that air conditioning! Check your A/C for proper cooling so when it gets hot you are not surprised to find it does not work.  For tips on how to lower the interior temp of you car,
             click here:  http://www.carcarenewsservice.org/articles/two-tips-cooler-cabin
  • Lights are often overlooked this time of year due to longer daylight hours.
  • Fluids. All fluids are important to your vehicle so make sure to have them checked and serviced as needed.
We hope this small list helps prepare you for your summer travels and please contact us with any questions.

 Scott can be contacted via email-benchmarkauto@msn.com and Andy can be reached via email at hoauto@msn.com.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

With all of life's stresses, sometimes you just need a break. Taking 15 minutes to unwind and reboot is a good idea for all of us.Not thinking about work can help you refocus. Today while taking a walk I looked up and this little  doe was about 7-8 feet from me. She was not frightened. Probably more annoyed than anything else. I watched her watch me for a few minutes and then took this snapshot. I went back to my walk and she remained there. What a de-stresser!

Cars can be frustrating when they don't work correctly. Proper maintenance is key to reducing the likelihood of a mechanical breakdown. Follow the guide in your owners manual. A good safety inspection at least 1 time per year is also a good idea. Follow the recommendations in you manual or ask your mechanic for variances based on your local driving conditions.

Stop and go driving is considered severe driving conditions. Also, the car that was not driven very often by a "little old lady who just took it to church on Sunday" is also considered severe driving conditions. Byproducts from combustion will never evaporate when these precision machines are driven like that. Carbon can also be an issue. Look at the island and consider this: most people live close to Winslow. Engines do not typically get fully warmed up. How far do you live from T & C or Safeway? This can cause carbon to build up in the combustion chamber or on the back side of the valves. That carbon will act like a sponge and absorb some of the fuel that is injected into the cylinders. The best option is to drive! Make that a good excuse to drive into Poulsbo or Silverdale and take your significant other out to lunch. At least 2 things accomplished and your car will love it. (Not to mention your significant other!)

Remember, less stress is a good thing.

Happy motoring.