Bowles Automotive Services

By: Bowles Automotive  09-12-2011
Keywords: vehicle, tire, Transmission

Coolant System

Your cooling system has the important job of maintaining your engine at a constant temperature whether the outside air temperature is 110 or 10 below 0. If the engine temperature is too low, fuel economy will suffer and emissions will rise. If the temperature is to hot for too long, the engine will self destruct.

With the extra loads we put on newer engines the importance of maintaining the cooling system has increased. Through many cycles of heating up and cooling down the fluid in the cooling system will slowing create scale and sediment that reduces the efficiency of the system to cool the engine properly.

The only way to truly clean the cooling system to keep it in top performing condition is to power flush the system. When your mechanic uses a power flush machine to clean your cooling system he will back flush the system, or in other words, he will flush a cleaning solution through the system in reverse from it's normal flow. This cleans the system more effectively by loosening and flushing out the scale and sediment.

For regular maintenance it's fine to just add a little antifreeze to your coolant tank to top it off. At regular intervals your cooling system will need to be flushed and refilled by a professional. Check with our service writers for the proper mileage for this service on your car.

Transmission Service

Your transmission needs servicing at regular intervals. See your owners manual for the specific mileage interval for your car or just ask one of our service writers. Automatic transmissions use fluid pressure to spin the drive shaft and a series of friction bands, disc and plates that get squeezed together with fluid pressure to change gears.

To make a smooth shift a certain amount of slippage is built into the friction pack as the transmission shifts gears. This little bit of slippage and the high temperatures create grit that gets caught in the filter or collects in the oil pan.

Because the transmission operates totally on fluid pressure in has a lot of lines, reservoirs, and channels to direct the fluid. If you just change your fluid, a lot of old fluid with dirt and grit in it will remain in these areas and you will only be adding some clean transmission fluid to a lot of old dirty transmission fluid.

The only way to really clean out all the old dirty fluid and the reusable filter is to replace your transmission fluid using a transmission flush machine. Using the flush machine pushes the old dirty fluid through the system replacing it with clean fluid.

At Bowles Automotive we offer complete transmission care from a complete fluid flush to more in death repairs and replacement.

Important Notice: If you decide to add transmission fluid to your vehicle yourself be very careful to use the correct transmission fluid for your car. Using the wrong fluid can harm or totally destroy your transmission. Never add any type of oil or hydraulic fluid.

Brake Service

Your cars brakes are by far the most important system on your car. We can all envision what may happen if the brakes fail. This is the one area you just can't afford to skimp on or take any chances with anyone but a true professional.

Watch for these warring signs and if you experience any of these or if the brakes just don't feel right, bring your car in to Bowles Automotive immediately so we can check out the problem and help keep you and your family safe.

Dash Warning Light
This light will come on if your emergency brake is on but it will also come on if there is a drop in brake pressure.

Brakes Grab
If you notice the brakes grabbing with just light pressure on the peddle, this could be an indication of loose, worn, or broken parts.

Brake Squeal
If your brakes make excessive noise, like squealing or a grinding noise you need to get it checked out quickly. It could mean your brake linings are worn to the point you could ruin more expensive parts if you continue to drive with the condition.

If your car pulls to one side when you hit the brakes it could indicate several problems. Worn parts, an under inflated tire, or hanging parts. All are serious problems and need to be checked by one of our professionals.

If your car vibrates excessively when you apply brake pressure you more than likely have a warped rotor and it will need to be resurfaced or replaced. Rotors under the manufactures specified thickness will have to be replaced.

Hard Pedal
If you have to use a lot of force to apply your brakes you may have a problem with your power brake unit or it may indicate a part failure such as a frozen caliper or wheel cylinder or damaged brake lines.

Low Pedal
When you apply your brakes, do you feel the pedal goes down further than it should? You may need a brake adjustment or you may have worn out pads or shoes or more serious problems.

Wheel Alignment

Wheel alignment is important for several reasons. First off, a properly aligned car drives better and handles the road with more agility. Then there is the cost factor. An out of align car will wear tires out in as little as a few thousand miles. With the high cost of tires today it really pays to keep your car in proper alignment.

Hitting pot holes, hitting curbs, driving on back roads, and bumping solid objects with your tires can put your wheels out of proper alignment. For your safety and to save money, bring your car into Bowles Automotive for regular wheel alignment checks. Most of today's cars require a 4 wheel alignment.

Add thousands of miles to your tires by keeping your wheels in alignment. You should get an alignment at least once a year. More often if you drive a lot of miles. If you feel a pull to one side or the other as you drive, you will want to get your car looked at as soon as possible. It may be an alignment problem that needs to be addressed or it could be an indication of a mechanical or tire problem and could be dangerous.

Tire Service

Here at Bowles Automotive we are tire experts. We carry many of the major tire brands that you know by name as well as other quality brands at affordable prices. Maybe you only think of us as your repair shop, but who else knows your car and your driving habits better than your mechanic?

When you need new tires come see what Bowles has to offer. Not only can we repair or replace your tires, our experts can explain to you why your tires wore unevenly and make professional recommendations of adjustments or repairs to fix the problem so you get the maximum life from your tires.

Do your tires have uneven ware or did they ware out quicker than expected? When you install new tires you will also want to take advantage of our state of the art alignment service that will help to ensure you get the maximum life from your tires.

We also suggest you take advantage of our Nitrogen fill service for your tires. Using Nitrogen in place of regular compressed air improves tire wear and gas mileage. Nitrogen keeps your tires running cooler and does not leak off as fast as air.

Buying new tires can be confusing. A major influence on tire life is how they are used, your driving style, vehicle, where you drive and maintenance. The owner's manual for your vehicle, or the label inside the glove box, tells you the proper tire size. It’s important information, because putting an undersized tire on your car can overheat or overload the tire, while an oversized tire can rub parts of the vehicle.

How to Read a Tire Sidewall
Use this diagram to decode the information on a tire sidewall.

1. The peaked mountain with snowflake indicates it’s a snow tire.
2. M + S (mud and snow) indicates an all season tire
3. P stands for passenger vehicle. You may find L for light-duty vehicle
4. 195 is the width of the tire in millimeters.
5. 60 is the “aspect ratio.” It’s the percentage ratio of the height of the sidewall to the width.
6. R means the tire has radial construction.
7. 15 represents the wheel diameter in inches.
8. 87 is the load index.
9. Q indicates the speed rating.

Proper tire maintenance is critical to the safe operation of your vehicle. It will also help improve your fuel efficiency, extend the tire’s life and provide better vehicle handling.

Keywords: Flush Machine, tire, Transmission, vehicle, Wheel Alignment,