AUTONET TV


Archive for May 2017

Picking the Right Tires in Lansing

Posted May 30, 2017 7:01 AM

Shopping for tires in Lansing can be bewildering because there are many choices. Let's simplify. There are four main classifications of tires, each designed for different purposes.

First off, there are summer tires. Those who buy summer tires in Lansing are looking for maximum summertime performance. The rubber is a little softer to help stick to the road on fast corners on Michigan roads. The tread has wide blocks at the shoulder to stiffen the tire in turns. The tread design can handle rain but really isn't set up for snow and ice.

Next comes winter tires. Lansing people buy winter tires because they still like performance driving when it's cold and slippery on Michigan roads, so they need a tread design that'll really bite into ice and snow. The rubber compound is formulated to stay pliable when temperatures drop below 45 degrees F/7 degrees C so they get great traction even on dry roads. On the other end of the winter tire spectrum are tires designed to handle well in severe ice and snow conditions.

The third category is all-season tires. Most new cars in Lansing showrooms come with all-season tires. This is a tire that is designed to be used all year round. The tread design and rubber compound is a compromise that won't give you the extreme capabilities of summer or winter tires; but if you're driving and weather conditions aren't at the extreme ends of the range, all-season tires might suit you just fine.

The last category is what you might have on your SUV or pickup. All-terrain or off-road tires are designed for both highway and off-road use – a tire that gets good traction in the dirt and on off-road obstacles, but still performs well on paved Lansing roads.

Choosing the right tire is important for Lansing car owners. Talk with your AutoSurgeonInc tire professional about your driving requirements and receive valuable guidance on tires that will meet your needs.

Give us a call.

AutoSurgeonInc
1820 E Kalamazoo St
Lansing, Michigan 48912
517-374-8940



Automotive Tips from AutoSurgeonInc: Alignment Inspection

Posted May 21, 2017 8:24 AM

Uneven tire wear, the car pulling to one side or a steering wheel that is off-center are signs for Lansing drivers that their wheels may be out of alignment.

When doing an alignment inspection, the service advisor at AutoSurgeonInc will inspect your tires for uneven wear as well as suspension and steering parts for signs of wear or damage. He?ll also compare your current alignment with the vehicle manufacturer?s settings.

Your vehicle owner?s manual will have a recommendation for when to check alignment. Of course, this recommendation is based on normal driving. If you have been in a crash, hit a curb/pothole, frequently drive off-road around Lansing, or notice any symptoms of misalignment, have your AutoSurgeonInc service advisor perform an important alignment check.

AutoSurgeonInc
1820 E Kalamazoo St
Lansing, Michigan 48912
517-374-8940



Should Lansing Soccer Moms Follow the Severe Service Schedule?

Posted May 15, 2017 12:05 PM

So you take your vehicle in for maintenance and the pro at AutoSurgeonInc tells you that you ought to change your oil more often. What? You followed the maintenance schedule – but you take a second look at that “severe service” schedule and see some of the following:


1. Most of your trips around Lansing are less than four miles/six and a half kilometers.
2. Most of your trips are less than 10 miles/16 km when outside Michigan temperatures are below freezing.
3. You don't do a lot of Michigan freeway driving, so you drive at low speeds most of the time.
4. You drive in an area with a lot of pollution, dust, dirt, mud or slush.
5. You frequently tow a trailer, haul heavy loads around Lansing or use a car-top carrier.
6. The weather in your area can get very hot or very cold.

Surprising, isn't it? Severe driving isn't quite what you'd envisioned.

Ask yourself: "Which auto service schedule should I follow?" For some of us, it's obvious. But for most of us, it's not an either/or question.

One way to decide how often to maintain your vehicle is to picture a line. On one end, imagine ideal driving conditions: year-round moderate Michigan temperatures, only freeway driving, all trips are longer than 4 miles/6.5 km and travel is always at a constant speed of 60 mph/97 kph. At the other end of the line, put the severe driving conditions. Now, stop and think about how you drive, where you live, where you go in Michigan and what you plan to do with your vehicle in the near future. Consider honestly where your driving fits on the line.

For example, if the regular maintenance schedule recommends an oil change every 5,000 miles/8,000 km, the severe schedule recommends 3,000 miles/5,000 km and you fall in the center of the driving conditions line, then 4,000 miles/6,600 km is a happy compromise. Just be honest. You don't want that happy compromise to turn into auto repairs.

Learning why our vehicles need more frequent service can also help us Lansing drivers determine a maintenance schedule. For example, fluids in your vehicle are depleted more rapidly the more heat there is in their environment. That heat can come from air temperatures, but also from the extra heat generated in the engine and transmission from stop-and-go driving. Towing a trailer or carrying heavy loads also generates more heat. So under these conditions, fluids must be replaced more often in order to retain their effectiveness.

Moisture naturally builds up inside of an engine because of the heating and cooling it constantly undergoes. When the engine is hot, moisture evaporates; when the engine is cool, moisture condenses. As long as the engine is getting hot enough to evaporate all of the moisture, your vehicle will remain healthy. But short trips don't allow for this and moisture can build up inside the engine. This moisture can lead to the formation of oil sludge, which in turn leads to clogged engine parts and damage.

In dusty or polluted Lansing area conditions, filters and fluids just get dirty more quickly. Talk with your service advisor at AutoSurgeonInc regarding service schedules and which one is right for you. Good car care means taking care of problems before they become problems. And in order to do that, you need to know how often to take your vehicle in to AutoSurgeonInc for service.

AutoSurgeonInc
1820 E Kalamazoo St
Lansing, Michigan 48912
517-374-8940



Relax When the Wind Blows in Michigan: Winter Car Prep for Lansing Drivers

Posted May 9, 2017 2:42 AM

When autumn comes around in Lansing, leaves fall, nights get longer and there's a definite nip in the air. Time to unpack the boots and gloves and fold some extra blankets onto the beds. It's also time for Lansing drivers to winterize their vehicles.

Here is some expert auto advice for Lansing drivers on what vehicles need to keep everyone safe and rolling throughout the Michigan winter months.

1. Check your antifreeze. Top it off or change it if necessary. You don't want your radiator, engine or hoses freezing up. If your vehicle isn't generating enough heat to keep you warm, your antifreeze might be low, or you might have a thermostat problem. Either way, you should get it checked out before the full force of Michigan winter sets in. If you are due for a cooling system service at AutoSurgeonInc in Lansing, get that done as well.

2. Check your brakes. The slushy wet conditions of winter increase stopping distances. Ice exacerbates the problem. Your first concern, of course, is to make sure you adapt your driving habits to winter weather: slow down, and give yourself plenty of room to stop. Get your brakes checked at AutoSurgeonInc and replace any worn pads or other parts. Check your brake fluid. It can accumulate moisture and decrease your stopping power.

3. Test your battery. A battery's cranking power drops in the cold, so if your battery is already weak, the onset of winter will do it in. The last thing you want is to be on a snowy Michigan road in the dark and cold with a dead battery.

4. Pack emergency supplies. Toss a blanket into the trunk. If you do find yourself stranded, your first concern will be to stay warm. If you're traveling away from Michigan population centers, then pack some emergency food and water as well. Also, it's a good idea to top off your tank in winter. That way, if you get stuck, you'll have some fuel to burn to stay warm, and it'll keep your gas lines from freezing up.

5. Check your wiper blades. They may be able to handle a light Lansing summer rain shower, but they might not be up to the ice and snow that collect on a windshield in winter. If you experience particularly harsh winters or really wet ones, you can purchase special blades that resist freezing. And don't forget to top off your wiper fluid.

6. Check your tires. Tires lose pressure over time, but they lose pressure fast when it's cold outside in Lansing. Tires lose about one pound of pressure every six to eight weeks; they also lose one pound of pressure for every 10°F/5.6°C drop in temperature. If the last time you checked your tires it was 80°F/26.7°C outside and it's 40°F/4.4°C now, your tires could be down five pounds in pressure — and that's serious. It's a safety issue and cuts down on your fuel economy.

7. Driving conditions in the Lansing area may warrant special winter tires. Check with your friendly and knowledgeable AutoSurgeonInc tire professional to get the right tires for your area and for your driving habits. If you are getting winter tires, it's always best to get them for all four wheels. But if you're only going to get two, put them on the rear wheels, even if you drive a front-wheel or four-wheel drive vehicle. Traction is more important on the rear of a vehicle if you want to prevent sliding or fish-tailing on slick surfaces.

So there you have it: a quick checklist to winterize your car in Michigan. When it comes to car care, preventive maintenance is always the best practice for Lansing drivers, especially when it comes to winter weather. None of us want to be caught out in the winter cold.

AutoSurgeonInc
1820 E Kalamazoo St
Lansing, Michigan 48912
517-374-8940



When You Hear the Crash in Lansing: What to Do After an Accident

Posted May 1, 2017 7:53 AM

Motorists in North America drive about 3 trillion miles/4.8 trillion kilometers every year. There are over 250+ million licensed drivers, and approximately 6.2 million accidents happen every year. Unfortunately, if we're going to drive vehicles, there are going to be accidents. Knowing what to do in case of an accident can help reduce the stress and cost of the situation. It can also protect you from false claims, incorrect judgments and unjust liabilities.

Never leave the scene of an accident. This is a crime, even if the accident is not your fault. If you leave the scene, it is referred to as a “hit-and-run,” and the fines are steep in Michigan. You can even lose your driver's license or spend some time in jail. If someone has been injured in the accident, most laws require you to help them. You must call for help. If you can, you must also render first aid.

Call 9-1-1 or get someone else to call 9-1-1 as soon as possible. Tell the operator if there are injuries or any circumstances that require fire services, such as leaking gas, broken utility lines or, of course, flames. Put out flares, turn on your flashers or lift your hood to warn other Lansing motorists that there's been an accident.

File a police report. This can seem like a hassle when there are no injuries and only minor damage to vehicles. But you'd be surprised at the lawsuits and false claims that can arise from fender benders. You want a police report to protect yourself.

Don't talk about the accident with anyone except the police. After an accident, adrenaline is pumping and emotions are running high, and our first reaction is often to relive and recount our experience. Don't. Again, people can and will use your words against you, and in a highly emotional state, you may not say exactly what you mean. Entire court cases have hinged on the meaning of one misplaced word. Talk to the police. Don't admit guilt or fault, not to the police or to anyone else. People often feel guilt after an accident, but later, when details are analyzed, it turns out not to be their fault. Don't say, “I'm sorry,” but rather, “Can I help? What can I do?” Sympathy has often been misconstrued as an admission of fault. On paper, your words will sound more sterile than at the accident, and they can be used against you.

Collect contact information from everyone involved in the accident. Get the officer's name and badge number. Get the other driver's name, address, phone number, date of birth, driver's license number and expiration and insurance information. Get a description of the other vehicle as well as its license plate number and vehicle identification number (VIN). Most insurance companies don't keep records of license plate numbers, so the VIN is the best identifier you have of another vehicle.

This is going to be too much to remember once you're in an accident. So write down or make a note on your phone with the information you need.

Ask witnesses to wait for the police to arrive. If they can't, then get their contact information. Ask them to jot down what they saw. If witnesses refuse to give you their names, write down their license plate numbers. That way the police can find them if necessary.

After the accident, call your insurance company. Also, if you have or think you might have an injury that did not require immediate care at the accident, contact your physician right away.

There's a lot Lansing drivers can do to prevent accidents. Defensive driving. Good car care and preventive maintenance. But if an accident does happen in the Lansing area, we should be prepared to handle it well. It will ease the stress of the situation and protect us from potential legal and financial harm. Be prepared. It's good auto advice in every situation. Ask our pros at AutoSurgeonInc for more safe driving tips the next time you visit.

AutoSurgeonInc
1820 E Kalamazoo St
Lansing, Michigan 48912
517-374-8940



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We have established longterm and stable partnerships with various clients thanks to our excellence in solving their automotive needs!

Just a word of thanks for the top notch done to Wema's Carolla and for the thoughtful communication with our Tanzanian exchange student. Not only did you fix her car, but also handled arranging towing, all in a narrow window of time. Wema is delighted to have her car back, running better than ever. Couldn't be more happy with your service! quotes-image
, 01/05/2021
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My son limped his vehicle into Auto Surgeon's parking lot . The vehicle is on its last leg and we just needed to get it up and running for a few more weeks til my son graduates. The proper repairs were out of the budget so Bill came up with a solution that made sense for this vehicle, Bill didn't have to adapt for us but he did, and the price was more than fair. Don't hesitate to call Auto Surgeon for any repair.quotes-image
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