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Archive for November 2017

Maintenance on My Mind

Posted November 27, 2017 1:31 AM

Ask any Lansing man or woman if they've taken their vehicle in for preventive maintenance lately, and the answer may well be “no.” Surveys indicate that over 80% of vehicles on the road today are in need of some kind of repair or maintenance. Now, ask that same person why he hasn't taken his car in for care. The answer will probably be that he forgot or that he just didn't think about it. Most Lansing residents seem to have a hard time remembering about scheduled maintenance for their vehicles.

Funny, because most of us in Lansing have no trouble remembering to wash our clothes, mow our lawns or brush our teeth. It isn't that we can't remember to take our vehicles for service; it's a matter of making it a priority.

When it comes to our vehicles, Lansing drivers like myself, need to be a little more maintenance-minded. The fact is, we can choose to do it, or we might find ourselves being compelled to do it.

For example, when we consistently forget to brush our teeth, a major consequence usually follows. The pain of that experience usually compels us to be more mindful of our teeth and take better care of them.

The same goes for our vehicles. If we ignore them long enough, a painful experience is sure to follow—painful for our pocketbooks, that is. People in Lansing who have gone through that experience are usually more conscientious about proper car care.

So, if you're not a fan of the school of hard knocks, at least when it comes to vehicle maintenance, remind yourself to look after your car. Pay attention to the little oil change tag on your windshield. When it's time take your car in, do it. But don't just change the oil. Get a full-service oil change at AutoSurgeonInc. Your technician will then check all of your fluids. He can advise you if any of them need to be changed or if any of them are low.

Low fluid levels can indicate leaks or a worn hose or seal, so they can check those for you as well. Other signs of wear are also immediately evident when you get a full-service oil change, such as a cracked serpentine belt or corroded battery cable. Your AutoSurgeonInc technician will also check the vehicle manufacturer's service recommendations for your vehicle and advise you of any other routine service that is coming due.

It's like a one-stop shop for auto advice that will keep you on top of your vehicle's maintenance.

If there is more to be done than the budget allows, you can get a picture of what needs to be done.  Then, create a plan with your AutoSurgeonInc service advisor and budget for it during the coming months. It's a whole lot less painful than unexpected car repairs.

Vehicles are more reliable than they ever have been. They can take a lot of abuse and neglect. But they're also expensive and complicated machines. Lansing drivers can't expect them to run forever without proper fluids and filters. Preventive maintenance at AutoSurgeonInc in Lansing will improve the reliability and life expectancy of your vehicle, as well as ensuring your safety on the road in Michigan.

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



Speak Up: Talking with Your AutoSurgeonInc Service Advisor

Posted November 19, 2017 2:36 AM

About 80% of the vehicles on Lansing roads today are behind on their preventive maintenance schedules. That translates to about 160 million vehicles in the United States that aren't performing as well as they could be - thousands right here in Michigan. Some of the maintenance issues are minor. Others represent serious safety concerns.

There are many reasons Lansing drivers neglect their routine car care. Some of the more common ones are complacency, lack of confidence, lack of trust and budget issues.

Modern vehicles are amazingly reliable compared to their older counterparts. They can run for years without any repairs, and we sometimes translate that to mean they don't need any maintenance. The trouble is that without maintenance, parts in the vehicle are gradually wearing out, fluids are getting dirty, oil is developing sludge — a lot of stuff is happening that we can't see, and it is destroying the vehicle. The first time we learn there is a problem, we have a major repair bill on our hands.

Older vehicles just couldn't keep going without frequent maintenance; they broke down without timely vehicle care. Modern vehicles are designed to keep running even when they're not fully healthy. Unfortunately, that convenience has led some of us to become complacent and ignore vehicle care — until we have to fix something. And fixing something today takes a whole lot more than it used to.

Some people in Lansing just don't feel comfortable taking their vehicles to their local Lansing service center. They don't know much about engines or auto mechanics, so they don't know what questions to ask. They don't want to appear foolish or ignorant.

Your physician doesn't expect you to understand what a ligament is or how it works. But if you have a problem with one, she's going to explain to you what it is, what's wrong with it and how it can be fixed. It's in her best interest as well as yours to do so. You'll both feel more comfortable with the treatment.

That's what you can expect from the pros at AutoSurgeonInc. They have to be highly trained and work with a lot of complex, high-tech systems. They don't expect their Lansing customers to understand car care. So ask questions. You need auto advice from a service specialist, just as you need medical advice from a doctor and financial advice from a financial advisor.

Which brings us to the next concern: trust. A lot of rumors fly around Lansing about auto repair scams. You may have heard about some local auto shops taking advantage of customers and replacing parts that weren't broken. Frankly, this is just bad business practice. Lansing auto service centers won't stay in business long if they're engaged in this type of activity.

It's in the best interest of Lansing service centers to diagnose a problem correctly and fix it right the first time. That's how they keep their businesses open.

Trust must be earned. But just as it took time for you to establish a relationship and rapport with your doctor, it will take time to build a relationship with your service center.

Also, realize that when your friendly and knowledgeable service advisor at AutoSurgeonInc recommends routine maintenance, he is generally relying on your vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations. In other words, your trust lies both with your service advisor and your vehicle manufacturer. You'll find that most of the service recommendations from AutoSurgeonInc you receive coincide with what's in your manual.

Those recommendations were set up by the engineers who designed your vehicle, not AutoSurgeonInc. The team at AutoSurgeonInc is just offering you a friendly reminder — a helpful reminder really, since most of us don't post our owner's manuals to our calendars.

Money is behind most neglect of vehicle maintenance. First, they worry that they can't afford it. Second, they worry that they're being overcharged.

The simple truth is, car care is like health care. We can't afford not to have it. Preventive maintenance is cheap compared to repair work. It extends the lives of our vehicles and saves us money on fuel. It also makes our vehicles safer to drive, which can prevent accidents. Putting off preventive maintenance can be very expensive.

Lansing area service centers have to be competitive. Like any business, they can't afford to overcharge customers or they go out of business. But vehicle care today does cost more in Michigan than it used to. Vehicles are more sophisticated, complex and high-tech. That means technicians have to be better trained. They have to purchase high-tech diagnostic equipment and tools. They have to keep up with the latest advances in vehicle engineering and subscribe to computer databases. Like any business, they also have labor costs, insurance, rent, utilities, taxes, office supplies, etc.

If you are strapped for cash, AutoSurgeonInc can offer auto advice to help you keep your car running safely and manage your budget. For example, let's say you need new brake pads, transmission service and a new cabin air filter. A technician can't ethically recommend you delay brake service: that creates a safety hazard for you and other Lansing drivers. You need to get that done now. But they can let you know if the transmission service can wait a month and how long you can put off changing the cabin air filter. They can also estimate what these services will cost. That gives you the time and information you need to save up for the other services.

The key to modern car care is preventive maintenance. Our modern vehicles are safer, more fuel efficient and more reliable than ever before. But to keep them that way Lansing drivers have to be more proactive about caring for them. It's good to know there are knowledgeable professionals at AutoSurgeonInc who can help us do just that.

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



By the Numbers: Tire Replacement at AutoSurgeonInc in Lansing

Posted November 12, 2017 9:59 AM

Ever notice that your tire is covered with writing? It's like some hieroglyphic art form. Of course, Lansing drivers know that it's not just graffiti, but to most of us, it might as well be. Would you like to know what all those codes on your tire mean? It won't lead you to buried treasure, but it could help you make a better tire purchase at your local Lansing tire store.

Prominently featured on your tire is a set of numbers and letters that looks something like this: 225 50 R 16 92 H. The first number is the width of the tire in millimeters, or the width between the sidewalls of the tire when it is fully inflated and not carrying a load. When Lansing drivers replace tires, they need to match this width number, or the tires won't fit properly in the wheel wells.

The 50 is the aspect ratio of the tire, which is measured by taking the height of the sidewalls and dividing it by the tread width. If you drive off-road around the Lansing area, it should have a high aspect ratio. For high performance on the road, you want a lower aspect ratio.

The R simply means this is a radial tire.

The 92 is the load rating index, or in other words, a rating of how much load a tire can safely carry. If you frequently haul heavy loads around Lansing, you will want a tire with a high load rating.

The last letter in our “code” sequence is the speed rating on the tire. Not all tires have this rating. In general, the closer the letter is to the end of the alphabet, the higher the speed rating. In other words, Z is the highest rating and A is the lowest. One exception: H comes between U and V. Why? Your guess is as good as mine.

If you'd just as soon ignore all of the markings on your tire, that's okay. When you need to replace your tires just ask your friendly and knowledgeable AutoSurgeonInc tire professional for his auto advice on the best tires for you and your vehicle. Replacing tires is a standard part of preventive maintenance for Lansing drivers vehicles. We all have to do it sooner or later. And the better we understand what we're buying, the better our vehicle will perform and the safer we will be on Michigan roads. Good vehicle care is informed vehicle care.

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



Fuel Injector Cleaning at AutoSurgeonInc

Posted November 6, 2017 5:39 AM

In very simple terms, a fuel injector is a valve that squirts fuel into your vehicle engine. Your engine control computer tells the fuel injector how much fuel to deliver as well as the precise time it should be delivered. Of course this happens thousands of times a minute in every single fuel-injected vehicle driving down Lansing roads.

Most fuel injectors for gas engines are known in the Lansing automotive community as port fuel injectors because they deliver the fuel to a port just outside the cylinder. The fuel pump provides pressure needed to squirt the right amount of fuel into the engine.

A few have recently introduced gas direct injection systems on some engines. They are now available at some Michigan dealerships. These systems inject the gas directly into the cylinders under very high pressure – many times the pressure of port injection systems.

Although more complicated, direct injection technology promises greater power with improved fuel economy. Michigan motorists can expect to see more of it in the future.

High temperatures under your vehicle hood and variations in Lansing gas quality cause fuel injectors to be fouled with wax, dirt, water, additives and carbon. Injectors can become partially clogged, preventing them from delivering the proper amount of fuel at the correct pressure.

When injectors are dirty, the fuel doesn't burn as efficiently resulting in poor fuel economy and loss of power. So it's wise for Lansing residents to keep their fuel injectors clean.

Your technician at AutoSurgeonInc can perform a fuel system service for you in which the fuel injectors are cleaned so that they operate properly and deliver the right amount of fuel at the right time.

Proper maintenance of your vehicle fuel system means that you will spend less on gas, enjoy strong performance and prevent repair bills down the road.

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



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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
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