Archive for the ‘Maintenance’ Category
On my drive in to work, occurred to me to mention some of the less than obvious benefits of driving a hybrid. I happened to be driving our Chevy Volt, we also have a Toyota Prius. In addition to the great fuel economy, did you know you don’t even use the traditional brakes above about 10 mph? So guess what? no annoying brake pulsation, noisy brakes, dirty wheels from brake dust and brakes that last on average 100,000 miles. Your non hybrid will have chewed up 2 sets of brakes in that amount of time, to the tune of about $700.00. Spend or save the money for something fun!
Just as our bodies need clean air to function properly, your sedan engine needs clean air to operate efficiently. Let’s go egghead for a minute. For every gallon of gas we burn driving on Michigan freeways, twenty pounds of carbon dioxide comes out the tailpipe. Question: how can a gallon of gas that weighs a little over six pounds produce twenty pounds of carbon dioxide?
The answer is that the carbon comes from the gasoline, but the oxygen comes from the air. You see, it takes about twelve thousand gallons of air to burn a gallon of gas in your engine. Clearly, your sedan needs a lot of air to keep going in Wyoming. A lot of clean air is best.
You’ve seen the pictures of people in Japan wearing face masks. They want some kind of filter to keep unwanted pollution and germs out of their lungs. Well, your sedan also works better when its internals are clean. When your sedan air filter’s dirty, it simply can’t trap any more dirt, so the pollutants just pass through into your air intake system. From there it can clog your fuel injectors and even get into the motor itself. Not surprisingly, burning dust and pollen in your sedan engine does you no good.
So, we’re talking potential damage for Grand Rapids drivers. But another big thing is wasted fuel. Your sedan engine management computer tries to mix the correct amount of air in with the fuel. If the filter’s clogged, there isn’t enough air for the optimal fuel to air mix and that really messes with MPG.
In fact, replacing a dirty air filter at Ervine’s Auto Repair in Grand Rapids can improve your fuel economy by up to ten percent. At today’s Wyoming fuel prices, you should be able to pay for a new air filter before your next oil change.
The verdict: When your sedan engine air filter needs to be replaced; it needs to be replaced. How often depends entirely on the level of air pollution where you drive in Michigan. A simple visual inspection at Ervine’s Auto Repair will tell you when you need a new engine air filter.
When you look at the air filter on your furnace at home and see it’s all clogged up with dust and dirt, you don’t hesitate to replace it. When your Ervine’s Auto Repair service advisor shows you your nasty engine air filter, you now know why you should go ahead and replace it.
For those of you that would like another person telling you how to drive in Grand Rapids in the winter, read on. For those that choose to ignore my sage advice, proceed at your own peril. My number one bit of advice, have your tires checked. Both for tread depth and wear, but also inflation and age of the tire. Number two, the heating/cooling system needs to be in proper working order. Nothing worse than freezing your keester off and not being able to see out any windows due to frosting of the glass. This is a genuine safety issue. Number three, have the battery/starting/charging systems checked. The electrical system works much harder in the winter due to the increased load and the battery loses some of its effectiveness when the temp drops. Number four, do not wash your vehicle when the temperatures get too low. 25 degrees and below seem to cause all kinds of problems: doors stick, locks stop working, wiper mechanisms get frozen, etc. I know we want to have a shiny vehicle, but the down side is a lot of aggravation. Aside from the car wash complications, many of these issues can be caught early with regular car maintenance from Ervine’s Auto Repair. Well, I think this is enough reading for today class, let’s go to recess.
Keep your tires on the road kids, Eric.
Well Grand Rapids, it’s that time of the year again when vehicle readiness is a necessary evil if we want a trouble free winter of driving. For those of you that have taken the initiative and gotten your buggy in good order, congrats. As for most of us Grand Rapids drivers, time is running out. This short reprieve from the nasty weather shouldn’t have us forgetting what is soon to come. A few basic repairs and maintenance is all that most vehicles need to easily get through a Grand Rapids winter, even ones like we just experienced. Give Ervine’s a call at 616-532-6600 and set up an appointment or have us look up your vehicle’s service history and see if anything jumps out at us. The cold, damp mornings are a comin’, let’s not have them be a problem.
Chelsea Vives: Awesome service!! They were extremely helpful and friendly! I loved how they were accommodating to the customers and being very organized with after hours drop-offs and pick-ups. They were also very quick with fixing my car which was great.
Andy Krafft: Ervine's has provided great service for me throughout my college years! They do their best to make time for customers and understand the importance and value in quality service. Would definitely recommend!
Erin O'Brien-Jenison: The staff is very friendly. The technicians take the time to explain repairs in detail. The loaner car service is very convenient for my family. Each of my experiences with Ervine's has been very positive.
Jamie Riehle: My car needed a lot of work and being relatively new to the area, I had to rely on online reviews. Ervine's got great feedback, so I made an appointment through their website. I was contacted almost immediately and scheduled very quickly. The repairs took a few days, but with the free loaner it was no big deal. They explained everything to me, helped me prioritize which repairs to do first, and Jamie even entertained my 5-year-old while I spent 10 minutes on the phone with my bank to get my payment to go through. I may have been able to find someplace a little cheaper, but you can't pay for the excellent customer service at Ervine's. The lobby is clean, has fresh coffee, and is very professional. As a woman I've been intimidated going into car shops but I never felt that way at Ervine's. I'll definitely be returning.
Kaitlin McDowell: I had a great experience at Ervine's. I know very little about my car beyond turning it on, so I was relieved when the staff were willing to spend extra time explaining to me exactly what is going on and helping me to be an informed consumer. I also appreciated that they are not trying to sell something-- I did not actually need the repair that the dealership had told me to IMMEDIATELY deal with, and the folks at Ervine's were willing to tell me that when they could have made a buck doing the repair. The visit was so painless I even got to run errands while I was waiting using one of their fabulous loaner cars. Thank you so much!