How-To Articles, Video, and Commentary

Can I Buy A Scanner To Check My Car’s OBD 2 System?

Posted by on 2:25 pm in Cars | 0 comments

One of the most common reasons your check engine light comes on is your computer has detected a system vapor leak. In 1996 the federal emission laws were changed and all car manufacturers were required to lightly pressurize the fuel system in order to check for vapor leaks. When you turn you key on to start your car the onboard computer will perform a pressure test automatically to see if there are any vapor leaks. If it detects a problem then the check engine will come on. It can be as simple as your gas cap did not get tightened all the way on your last gas stop, or a spider has built a web in the vent line. These are considered nuisance codes that have given many car owners a reason to purchase a check engine light scanner.

When the check engine light is turned on by the OBD 2 system it will remain on until the code is cleared with a scanner, even if the problem that turned the light on in the first place has been fixed. Many scanners can tell the operator if the code is an old code or a present code and will provide common solutions to resolve the problem. A simple possible fix is to tighten the gas cap then clear the code with your scanner. After driving the car for several days if the check engine light does come back on again you have just fixed the problem and saved yourself money by not having to take it to a mechanic. If the check engine light does come back on then it is probably best to take it to your local automotive repair shop for further diagnosis.

The Importance of Brake Replacement

Posted by on 5:29 pm in Cars | 0 comments

Brake InspectionIt is important to get brakes inspected at the first sign of trouble. Symptoms of bad brakes include smells, vibrations, abnormal sounds and feelings. This indicates you need new brakes.  Don’t wait, replace worn parts immediately. Parts such as pads are the first to wear out , and rotors start to warp, both of these shorten the life span of brakes due to grinding of metal to metal.

Regarding brake pads and shoes, screeching, grinding, squealing, rubbing and other loud noises are considered indications that you need new pads.  In addition, if you find yourself pushing  down on the brake pedal longer and farther, this tells you its time to replace the brake pads. Don’t” wait till they are so worn down you find yourself in a predicament where you cannot stop. Your brake system speaks volumes to you and listen for vibration and pulsation in the pedal of your steering wheel.  This can cause your rotors to get warped.

Odd smells can signal something isn’t right with your breaks. If you experience odors or a pungent smell from your brakes, its time to visit your local auto repair center. These smells are not normal and can result in hazardous driving conditions. Conduct a thorough brake inspection to know what part of your braking system has lost integrity.

Your braking system on your car is a very important to pay attention to. When you hear abnormal sounds or something seems different to you it is time to have your brakes checked. The longer you wait the more potential damage will be done to your brake system. You are your best first line of defense to prevent expensive repairs.

What is Fleet Service?

Posted by on 1:07 pm in Commercial Vehicles | 0 comments

Any company that has a sizable amount of commercial vehicles is probably familiar with the term “fleet service” or “fleet management.”  Fleet management is a very important aspect of the company and could mean the difference between being able to service a customer or not.  It is mandatory that certain companies that have delivery as their sole source of income – ie, delivery companies and taxi services, perform regular and preventative maintenance to their fleet of vehicles.

Companies usually assign a fleet manager to oversee the maintenance of their vehicles.  The fleet manager is an important position and his management could create lower maintenance costs and improved tracking and budgeting.  A good fleet manager can also impact a company’s reputation – they could be known for their over the top service rather than undependable.

On top of preventative maintenance, a good fleet manager will also know how to budget fuel for the company’s vehicles.  Software usually aids in this process and helps the fleet manager log and track mileage and fuel consumption.  This software could also help manage past fleet service records and a history of every vehicle in the company’s fleet.