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AC Compressor

gallery 1462223315 ac compressorSummer is coming, and the last thing you want to deal with is a dead air conditioning system in your car. The most common AC system failures relate to leaks, but if a leak cannot be found, the AC compressor might not be doing its job. Some compressors have a clutch mechanism on the pulley end that can suddenly refuse to engage, and others simply have internal seals that fail and render it incapable of building system pressure. Either way, these issues both call for a replacement unit.

Keeping the Pressure in Your Tires

What do I need to know about tire pressure?

Tire pressure is a measure of the amount of air in a vehicle's tires, in pounds per square inch. The required service involves checking the tires' pressure with a pressure gauge, at least monthly, if not more frequently.

Should I do this service when it's recommended?

Yes. Absolutely.

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A Little Bit About Oil Changes

What is happening when I change my oil?

An oil and filter change involves draining out the old motor oil and replacing it with fresh, new motor oil. The oil filter also gets replaced at the same time.

Should I do this service when it's recommended?

In general, yes. Changing your vehicle's oil is one of the most important things you can do to avoid bringing large bags of money to your mechanic later on.

However, there's a lot of controversy about exactly when engine oil gets old and how often it should be replaced with new oil. Because there are many factors at work -- how you drive, the condition and age of the engine, the external environment you drive in, and stop-and-go versus highway driving -- it's an inexact science. Owner's manual recommendations for oil and filter changes vary from 3,000 to 10,000 miles, depending on the type of oil used.

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A Basic Breakdown of your Brakes

What do I need to know about brakes?

Brake pads, linings and rotors are parts of your car's brake system and are housed next to each of the wheels. They push against one another to create friction, which stops the car.

There are two kinds of brake systems: disc brakes and drum brakes. Disc brakes are the most common system in use today, and they're very much like the hand brakes on a bicycle. When you step on your car's brake pedal, the brake pads squeeze a spinning disc rotor that's attached to the wheel. The resulting friction, when applied to each of the wheels, slows the car.

The second type, drum brakes, involve brake shoes that push out against a spinning brake drum, which is attached to the wheel. This friction slows the car.

Both systems work by creating friction, so brake parts are expected to wear out. The questions then are, how worn out are they? And are they worn out enough that they need to be replaced?

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