Monthly Archives: May 2024

Strutting Your Stuff (Shocks and Struts)

Ever wonder how your vehicle is able to move over bumps, potholes and other irregularities in the road and you hardly feel a vibration in the cabin? It’s your shocks and struts doing the hard work along with the rest of your suspension and tires.  They keep the ride smooth and are important for your vehicle’s safe operation. 

So, how do you know when your shocks and struts are wearing out? One way is to look at the surface of your tire (where the rubber meets the road—where the tread is).  You might see some little indentations in certain spots, known as tire cupping.  If your vehicle takes longer to stop than it used to, takes a dive when you hit the brake pedal or bottoms out (scrapes) on a big bump in the road, that’s another sign, as are loud, odd noises.

You may also notice your vehicle sways more than it used to. Every once in a while, look around at your shocks to see what shape things are in.  If you see the rubber cover cracked or worn out or see a fluid outside your shocks, those are signs to bring your vehicle in to us so we can see what’s going on. 

Since shocks and struts contribute to the safe operation of your vehicle, this service is important. Shocks and struts are what help your tires stay in close contact with the road and help stabilize your vehicle. They also help electronic safety systems work properly, including anti-lock braking, stability control, and collision avoidance.  Bad shocks and struts are just going to get worse with time.

It's best to have regular maintenance done before anything goes wrong with your struts and shocks.  Your vehicle’s manufacturer has guidelines for how long those intervals are.  If you do start to see some of the warning signs, head on over so we can evaluate any problems.  We’ll replace the parts your vehicle needs and have you strutting your stuff once again.

Ed's Car Care Center
7811 North Clinton Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46825
2604835721
edscarcare.autotipsvideo.com

Out of Joint (CV Joint and Boot Replacement)

If you have a front-wheel-drive vehicle, it has components called CV joints which enable you to turn your wheels smoothly. The CV stands for “constant velocity.” In essence, it’s a set of gears that connect a shaft that allows power from the transmission to be sent to the wheels.  When you turn the wheels, no matter what angle, the input velocity rotation will be equal to the output. Thus, the name, CV (constant velocity) joint. Other vehicles with 4-wheel drive and all-wheel drive also use CV joints.  

If one of your CV joints isn’t working right, you may find your vehicle difficult to handle.  If one breaks, your vehicle may stop moving.  So, it’s important that CV joints be in top working condition.  The joints need a lot of lubrication, so they are surrounded by grease.  There’s a rubber enclosure around them called the boot which holds the grease in and protects CV joints from the elements. 
 
The biggest problems come when one of those rubber boots cracks.  Water and dirt can then get into the joint, causing it to wear down and lose all its vital lubrication.  It’s important to have your CV joints inspected regularly so a technician can spot cracks before the CV joints are ruined.  Sometimes just the boot can be replaced before any major damage is done.  But when the joint does go bad, it must be replaced.  

Signs your CV joint needs changing out? You might hear a clicking sound when you turn if the CV joint is worn out. You might notice some thick, black grease around your wheel or on the pavement where you park your vehicle.  You might also feel your vehicle vibrate when you’re going fast.

If you suspect you might have a bad CV joint, bring your vehicle in so a technician can determine what’s going on.  Keep your CV joints in good shape and reduce the risk of them seizing up at an inopportune time so you can avoid being stranded.

Ed's Car Care Center
7811 North Clinton Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46825
2604835721
edscarcare.autotipsvideo.com

Categories:

Drive Train

Steering You Right (Power Steering Fluid Service)

It’s important for safe driving that two of the most important systems in your vehicle work right.  One is the brakes.  The other is the steering.  Nearly all vehicles on the road have some sort of power steering that allows you to direct a very heavy machine with little effort. 

There are two types, hydraulic and electric.  Many newer vehicles have electric power steering that uses an electric motor to make your steering easier.  But there are many vehicles on the road that use a system that has been around for years.  It uses a power steering pump, a cylinder, several valves, and hydraulic fluid to make it easy for you to turn the wheel. 

If you have hydraulic power steering in your vehicle, it’s important to change your power steering fluid every once in a while.  Over time, the fluid gets contaminated with dirt and other particles.  You might notice your steering is loose, maybe harder to turn and makes a low, straining noise. The first step in determining hydraulic power steering problems is to have your fluid checked.  Its color and smell can give a technician clues to any problems. They will recommend changing it if it has signs of being old, such as the wrong color or smell. 

Because steering is such a vital safety feature in your vehicle, the best strategy is to maintain your power steering according to the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations.  That means periodically, the fluid should be changed.  That will prolong the life of the other steering systems components, such as hoses, seals, valves, and the power steering pump.  During this service, the technician will replace the fluid, bleed the system and check for leaks.  You’ll be back on the road knowing your vehicle is in top shape to steer you right.

Ed's Car Care Center
7811 North Clinton Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46825
2604835721
http://www.edscarcarecenter.com

Categories:

Steering

Full Stop (Brake Master Cylinder Replacement)

When you step on your brake pedal, you want to feel confident that your vehicle’s going to stop.  If your brakes aren’t working right, it’s a risk to your safety and the safety of others on the road.  After all, you’re driving a machine that weighs thousands of pounds, and you have to be able to stop that big machine quickly and with control, especially with some of the speeds you travel on the highways. 

The heart of your vehicle’s brake system is the master cylinder.  When you apply the brakes, the master cylinder has pistons, springs, and brake fluid.  That fluid amplifies and distributes the force of your foot through brake lines to calipers at all your wheels.  Those calipers squeeze down on rotors or discs, which is what slows down and stops your vehicle.

For safety, a master cylinder has two cylinders, one for two wheels, and the other for the remaining two wheels.  That way, if there is a failure in one, you’ll still have braking power at half your wheels.

The master cylinder doesn’t last forever, of course, and here are some signs it may have problems.  When you press on the brake pedal, it feels soft and spongy.  You may see the brake light on your instrument panel go on.  You may notice brake fluid leaking, or it may be discolored. 

All of those are signs of brakes that need attention, and among the possible culprits is a master cylinder that has failed.  When you bring it in for a technician to look at, they’ll check not only the master cylinder but also the rest of the components, such as pads, discs, shoes, brake lines, and hoses.  If your master cylinder needs replacing, we’ll make sure all the other parts meet the manufacturer’s specs as well. 

Brakes are important.  Really important. Full stop.

Ed's Car Care Center
7811 North Clinton Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46825
2604835721
http://www.edscarcarecenter.com

Categories:

Brakes
Make an Appointment
Ed's Car Care Center is committed to ensuring effective communication and digital accessibility to all users. We are continually improving the user experience for everyone, and apply the relevant accessibility standards to achieve these goals. We welcome your feedback. Please call Ed's Car Care Center (260) 483-5721 if you have any issues in accessing any area of our website.