Category Archives: Maintenance

Another Couple of Years: Making Your Vehicle Last With Help From Convenience Auto Service

Another Couple of Years: Making Your Vehicle Last With Help From Convenience Auto Service

A while back, the Cash for Clunkers program was all over the Michigan news. Ann Arbor people could trade in their old vehicle for a new one that got better gas mileage and receive a government rebate. A lot of Ann Arbor motorists had so-called clunkers that they wanted to keep. They're good commuters, grocery getters or toy haulers. They enjoy that fact that they're paid off, or soon will be. They would gladly like to keep their vehicles for 200,000 miles (320,000 kilometers) or more – as long as it's economical to do so. There are plenty of Ann Arbor drivers whose vehicles are running after 150,000 or 200,000 miles (240,000 or 320,000 kilometers). We can learn from what they're doing to keep our own vehicles on the road in Michigan.The Ann Arbor drivers of high-mileage cars often report a common denominator of never skipping an oil change. That may sound a bit unsophi ... read more

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Maintenance

Severe Service Requirements

Severe Service Requirements

A lot of Ann Arbor drivers have asked whether or not they should use their severe service maintenance schedule, which is listed in their vehicle's  owner's  manual. It can be somewhat confusing, so we decided to consult an expert. Cricket Killingsworth is from QMI/Heartland, a manufacturer of automotive products and fluids. She's been in the automotive business for over 30 years and is a speaker, a trainer and a writer. Cricket says there's so much confusion on this topic because, "Most owner's manuals actually have two maintenance schedules. Sometimes these are called 'regular service' and 'severe service.' Sometimes they're simply called Schedule 1 and Schedule 2. A severe service schedule recommends that things like an oil change, air filter replacement and transmission service be done more often: either in fewer miles or in less time." Foreign and domestic vehicle manufacturers create a specific schedule for each vehicle they manufacture ... read more

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Maintenance

The Importance of Ann Arbor Drivers Following Service Intervals

The Importance of Ann Arbor Drivers Following Service Intervals

Today in our Convenience Auto Service blog, we're going to talk about following recommended service intervals. Your vehicle isn't the only aspect of your life in Ann Arbor with recommended intervals: Let's start with twice yearly dental check-ups and regular physical exams. How about laundry, watering the lawn and paying the bills?Now, what would happen if you didn't follow these intervals? Well, you'd get more cavities. You may not discover health conditions that could be more effectively treated with early detection. And you'd have to wear dirty clothes, be embarrassed by your brown lawn and have your utilities shut off.Clearly, there are some things in life that we have to take care of regularly. If we don't, there are negative consequences. Our quality of life in Ann Arbor takes a hit and it inevitably costs more money.So why is it so hard to remember to follow regular preventive maintenance on our vehicles?Probably a cou ... read more

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Maintenance

Keeping Your 'Old Faithful' Auto Running

At Convenience Auto Service we've had a lot of Ann Arbor customers asking how they can make their vehicles last longer. These questions are actually a reflection of a trend that's been building for several years in Michigan. The median age of personal vehicles is now over nine years. And 33 percent of all vehicles on the road have over 75,000 miles (120,000 km) on them. It looks like it's going to keep heading in that direction for a while. With high fuel prices, a lot of Michigan folks are putting off buying a new car. So let's say you're one of the average in the Ann Arbor area; you've got a nine-year-old car with 80,000 miles (130,000 km) on the odometer. What can you do to make it last another year or two?Let's start with the premise that there's no reason that a modern car can't run for 200,000 miles (320,000 km) with proper care in Ann Arbor. The engineering and manufacturing quality is there.Of course, some parts will wear out along the way, but there ... read more

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Maintenance

Busting Automotive Myths in Ann Arbor, Michigan

Busting Automotive Myths in Ann Arbor, Michigan

Myths passed around our Ann Arbor, Michigan community start with a grain of evidence and are then built up with a lot of imagination and very elastic logic. And the internet is a breeding ground for automotive myths. Some bloggers recall the vehicles of yesteryear and declare their modern decedents to be virtually maintenance free and that anyone who says otherwise is out to rip you off. To get the truth about auto myths you hear around the Ann Arbor area, come over to Convenience Auto Service. Let's examine a couple of the more popular rants and look at the truth behind them.The first one is that the chassis no longer needs lubrication for suspension, steering and the driveline. They declare that anyone who has charged you for lubrication is a charlatan.The truth on which this myth is based is that many new vehicles come from the factory with sealed joints and cannot be greased. However, there are still some grease ... read more

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Maintenance

Your Vehicle Is NOT Maintenance Free, Ann Arbor Car Owners

Your Vehicle Is NOT Maintenance Free, Ann Arbor Car Owners

A generation ago, Ann Arbor drivers seemed to be more inclined to keep their vehicle's preventive maintenance on schedule. One reason for this may be that vehicles back then were a lot less reliable than they are today. Taking your vehicle in to your Ann Arbor shop every year or two for repairs seemed to be a good reminder to keep the oil changed.For example, almost everyone in Ann Arbor used to take their vehicles in for regular tune-ups. Vehicles had mechanical ignition systems, which meant ignition points, spark plugs and coils had to be replaced and the timing adjusted every few years. As long as the vehicle was in for a tune-up at Convenience Auto Service, the vehicle was inspected and you took care of any needed repairs at the same time.Today's engines have electronic ignition systems and engine control computers. Spark plugs can last for up to 100,000 miles/160,000 km. Vehicle reliability has vastly improved in the last few decades, and surveys report ... read more

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Maintenance

Fall and Spring Checkup in Ann Arbor

Fall and Spring Checkup in Ann Arbor

When I was a kid, my dad always made sure he took the cars in for Spring and Fall checkups. I was telling a friend that it's about time to get into Convenience Auto Service for a checkup and he said that he read on the internet that modern cars don't need seasonal service.My friend is (technically) right about some things, but from a practical standpoint, a seasonal check up still makes sense.Back when my dad was teaching me about how to take care of the family vehicle, most of them used a different weight of oil in the winter and in the summer. But most of today's modern engines run the same oil year round. High-tech engines and high-tech motor oils are better able to handle the seasonal changes.Your owner's manual or Ann Arbor service advisor at Convenience Auto Service can tell you the right oil to use.Of course, you're concerned about the coolant or antifreeze. You don't want to overheat in the Michigan summer ... read more

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Maintenance

Maintenance Free Myth

Sometimes we hear Ann Arbor motorists say, "What's up with all this maintenance stuff? Modern cars just don't break down." While it is true that today's cars and trucks are extremely reliable, they are also becoming increasingly complicated and use more exotic materials than ever before. All that complexity demands higher tolerances for everything. For example, most Ann Arbor auto owners don't realize how high tech automotive fluids have become. Fluids like, engine oil, transmission fluid, coolant and brake fluid. Did you know that a modern engine would not run for more than a few months using motor oil formulas from 30 years ago? Today's automotive fluids contain a much higher percentage of additives to protect your vehicle's components from premature wear and corrosion. Time and miles march on for all of our cars. Please don't think we're using scare tactics to get you to take care of your maintenance - but here are some personal stories from AutoNetTV staff members ... read more

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Maintenance

Which Item Is Most Stolen from Vehicles in Ann Arbor?

Which Item Is Most Stolen from Vehicles in Ann Arbor?

  Which item is most often stolen from vehicles in Ann Arbor?Is it: Stereo Wheels Air Bag DVD System Well, if you said stereo – you used to be right. But airbags have now surpassed stereos as the biggest target for theft in Michigan – approximately 50,000 a year are stolen across the country. New airbags cost about $1,000, but go for $50 to $200 on the black market in Michigan.Stolen airbags are making their way back into cars that have been in an accident. Of course, the danger to the consumer of having a stolen airbag installed is that you can never be sure what may have previously affected them and if they will work right when you need them. Contact us at Convenience Auto Service for more information about where to get your airbags checked or replaced.Find us at 2280 W. Liberty Street, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48103You can reach us by phone at: 734-769-0170 There are reports that 1 in 25 airbag r ... read more

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Maintenance

Convenience Auto Service Maintenance Tips: The Belt Goes On

Convenience Auto Service Maintenance Tips: The Belt Goes On

All Ann Arbor service advisors know that without the alternator, the battery will go dead in a few miles. The serpentine belt may also run the pumps for both the power steering and power brakes. And on many vehicles, the serpentine belt powers the water pump. The water pump circulates coolant through the engine to keep it within normal operating temperatures. (On some vehicles, the water pump is powered by the timing belt instead of the serpentine belt.) So you can see the serpentine belt does a lot of work. And it if breaks, it affects a lot of systems. That's why your vehicle manufacturer and your service advisor at Convenience Auto Service have recommended that it be changed every so often so that it doesn't fail.Your friendly and knowledgeable Convenience Auto Service service advisor can perform a visual inspection of the belt to see if it has any cracks that signal the belt could fail soon and wil ... read more

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Maintenance
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