Every day, you depend on your car to get you where you need to go. However, your vehicle comprises various interdependent systems that only last for a while, and ignoring auto repair issues can lead to more costly problems.
Understanding a few common warning signs is essential to being a responsible vehicle owner. Read on for 5 of the most common auto repair issues and how to fix them.
Check Engine Light
The check engine light is the most dreaded warning sign for car owners. The bright, yellow, hard-to-miss all-caps message can signal anything from a loose gas cap to a serious issue in the heart of your engine and emissions system.
If your check engine light stays on steadily, don’t panic – but make sure you get your vehicle checked out as soon as possible to avoid any potential problems down the line.
Some people try to put a piece of tape over their check engine lights, but that’s not a good idea. It will still let the computer know that something is wrong, and it will turn back on later.
Tires are an important part of your car’s ability to maintain traction on the road. However, tires can fail for some reasons, including a puncture or uneven wear.
Uneven tire wear can be caused by under or over-inflation, cupping due to improper wheel alignment, and feathering resulting from faulty suspension components. In addition, uneven tire wear may be indicated by raised bars or symbols on the treads of your tires.
Keeping your tire pressure at the recommended level can help avoid uneven tread wear. You can also extend the life of your tires by rotating them based on manufacturer recommendations.
Check Engine Light Codes
Seeing the Check Engine Light come on is one of the most common car repair issues that can happen. While it may seem intimidating, there are a few steps you can take to uncover the code that is triggering the warning light. The best way to do this is with an OBD scanner device, which you can find at most auto-service stores or online.
These devices hook up to your vehicle’s computer port and retrieve the error codes causing the Check Engine Light to illuminate. The codes are five digits and correspond with specific systems within your vehicle. For example, a code with “2” indicates fuel or air metering system problems like an engine misfire. Other codes indicate things like climate control or antilock brakes.
If your car misfires, it can feel like a jolt from hell that could easily put you in a collision. It will also cause the engine to run rough, reducing power and causing heavy vibrations.
A misfire is when one or more engine cylinders fail to function properly. This is caused by either a spark plug or ignition coil problem.
Mechanical misfires are usually the most serious because they don’t just go away and can lead to other engine issues. For example, a worn or damaged timing chain can stretch enough to affect how the engine is firing. This can be hard to spot and will likely only worsen over time. It’s best to have an auto repair services at the situation immediately.
If your car, ute, or Jeep makes screeching or grinding noises when you turn the wheel, it’s time to fix this. It’s not normal and can cause a lot of damage to your steering system over time.
The simplest way to fix this is to replace the steering wheel. To do so, disconnect all wires leading to it and remove the airbag if applicable (be careful not to activate it). Next, use a screwdriver to disconnect the central lug nut. You may need a special set of tools depending on your vehicle, but it should be an easy job.
A shaky steering wheel can make driving tiring and puts your vehicle at risk for accidents. It could be better for resale value. This problem is very easy to diagnose and repair.