Car Care for the Summer Months

To keep yourself from ending up on the side of the road while on vacation or running the kids around town, take note of some simple precautions to enhance your summer driving experience. Spenser’s Automotive, your Denton car care specialists can help get your summer car maintenance in order.

The pressure in your tires can change when the summer temperatures hit.  Check for under-inflated tires that bulge out or over-inflated tires that do not hug the ground.  A penny test can also be performed on your tires to check their tread.  If you can see Lincoln’s head when you stick a penny in the tread, you will want to come see your Denton TX tire specialists soon.

Do a quick check of the coolant and radiator fluid levels. The summer months will inevitably raise the normal temperature of your vehicle and put pressure on your cars cooling system to perform.  Schedule an appointment with your Denton TX oil change specialist to make sure your fluid levels are high.

Before driving around in the summer heat, always check your automobile’s air conditioning system. If you’re A/C unit is having trouble sustaining cooler temperatures, your car may be leaking a low level refrigerant. Checking for leaks is best handled by your Denton air conditioning repair experts, Spenser’s Automotive.

Other scheduled maintenance action items for the summer include checking your hoses, belts, brakes, air filter, windshield wipers and car battery. For all your summer car care needs, schedule an appointment with Spenser’s Automotive, your Denton TX car service specialists.


The Importance of the Oil Change

Oil ChangeIt may be that time again to take your car in for that necessary oil change for your car. While many know when their cars are scheduled to come in, quite a handful of those have no idea about the procedures that take place during the visit.

Our Denton TX mechanics fully understand the misconception, and we want you to be educated for your next and future oil change services. We want you to know that all of your questions are welcomed – and will be answered – by trained professionals.

Many drivers only know that the oil comes in a plastic container. Some don’t know that without proper amounts of oil, your car’s engine can lock, which could mean the demise of your car as you know it. Others do not realize that oil changes help remove particles and contaminants that could harm your system overall.

Take an actual glance at the oil, and learn what its purpose is. In checking to see if your oil is low, find your car’s dipstick and wipe it off, then reinsert it. A line on the dipstick will determine if your oil is low. If the oil is really dark, that also is a tell-tale sign for a change. This, in addition, can help in saving you lots of money down the road.

Let our Denton automobile technicians service your car and answer all of your questions. Call our Denton TX auto shop today, or visit us online for information.


Proper Wheel Alignment & Suspension

Wheel AlignmentOur Denton TX mechanics are among the best in the business when it comes to keeping your car or truck in the best shape possible. We know how important it is for your automobile to operate under peak performance, and proper wheel alignment plays a heavy role in your automobile’s effectiveness.

Proper wheel alignment and suspension service means first-rate vehicle control for the driver. Alignment does not necessarily involve the wheels or the tires, but it does involve a vehicle’s suspension, which controls how a vehicle handles all in all.

Proper wheel alignment can aid in the increase of fuel efficiency. It also will keep your automobile at its highest resale value. Improper wheel alignment can be detected by a gradual pulling to the left or right of your steering wheel. Make sure your tires are in great condition to help avoid this, as well.

Don’t wait too late to have your wheel alignment checked.  Our Denton TX automobile specialists are here to assist you and to serve you. Give our Denton auto shop a call today, or visit us online for more information on wheel alignment.


Checking the Spare Tire

Spare TireMany families are preparing for spring trips around this time. Some college students are even preparing for Spring Break excursions. This means more people will be preparing for upcoming road trips with last-minute car washes, fluid checks and other quick tests to ensure automobiles are in excellent condition.

When checking the tires, it’s a must that all tires are checked. It’s easy to remember the four tires that your automobile rides on, but our Grapevine TX mechanics urge you to check the spare tire thoroughly before getting on the road. You never know when one of your road tires will blow, and it’s always a smart idea to have your backup tire ready to go at any given time.

It’s quite common for most people to forget about the spare, but our Grapevine tire experts suggest you treat it as if it were a part of your tire rotation schedule. In fact, it’s not a bad idea to work your spare into working rotation just to keep it in drivable shape.

In addition to checking your spare, our mechanics suggest you have proper tire rotation, tire balance and wheel alignment services done during scheduled periods according to your owner’s manual. Our Grapevine TX auto care company can assist you with any questions you have about your tires. Give us a call today, or contact us online for details.


‘Penny Test’ Checks Tire Tread

Penny TestIt’s amazing how one cent so important to a car. While it may not sound much, the responsibility of one penny goes far beyond its currency value.

The “penny test” is a sure-fire way to determine how much life your current set of tires have remaining. Once considered something of a myth, the penny test is one of the most accurate and inexpensive tests you can initiate on your car and its tires.

The test actually determines tread capability. In checking tread depth, a penny is inserted into a tire’s tread groove. Pennies feature the head of Abraham Lincoln, and if the top of Lincoln’s head is showing – where the penny reads “In God We Trust – then that’s a sign that the tread is low. If Lincoln’s head is hidden, your tires are still in comfortable driving condition.

Insufficient tire tread is a reason why many accidents occur on the road. Experts suggest tire tread should not go below 1/16 of an inch. Our Denton TX mechanics can assist you with determining whether or not your tires are either in excellent driving shape or in need of being replaced. It may not be such a bad idea to keep a penny or two around, as well.

Feel free to contact our Denton TX auto shop for more information on our expert tire service. Call us today, or visit us online.


For Driveway Leaks, Check the Color

Oil Fluid LeakA stain on the driveway can be something as significant as dirt on the ground. It also can be something as major as the first sign of complete automobile failure.

It is important to know the stains you see leaking from your car and onto your driveway. Most stains and their importance are determined by the color. Our Denton TX mechanics want to make sure you know your leak stains and their colors.

The first thing you’ll want to do with any stain is put a white sheet of paper under your car where the leak is spotted. If the leak is dark in color (black or brown), chances are, you’re leaking motor oil. This is only considered a major issue if you notice large puddles.

Leaks with a red tint could mean a transmission fluid leak. Leaks with a yellow tint could mean a brake fluid leak. These are high-priority leaks, and if you see red or yellow, take your car in immediately. Both of these leaks eventually can shut down your car if left untreated.

If you see a stain and are unsure about it, it’s best to play it safe and take your automobile to our Denton TX car care specialists. Call our Denton auto repair center to schedule a maintenance appointment today, or visit us online for information.


Managing the Timing Belt

Timing BeltAt Spensers Quality Automotive, we are committed to keeping your car in excellent shape for as long as possible. In keeping a car at better than face value, it’s imperative to make sure your timing belt receives all necessary maintenance and attention.

The timing belt, often called the cam belt, connects your car’s crankshaft to its camshaft, which operates how your engine valves function. Failure of the timing belt usually involves either an unraveling of the fiber cores or a case where the belt has “stripped teeth,” where a smooth spot is left on the belt where the drive cog slips.

Timing belts, to the naked eye, are tough to inspect, and replacement is recommended by the manufacturer. Failure of the belt, in addition to costing hundreds of dollars in repair fees, can lead to engine failure.

Our certified Denton TX mechanics specialize in replacement, maintenance and proper performance of your timing belt. Contact your Denton automobile shop today, or visit us online to schedule a routine service checkup.


Driving on the Icy Roads

Driving on Icy RoadsThe north Texas area has had its share of ice and snow, which has equated into messy road conditions for us all. The icy conditions can be a major burden for your car, and there has never been a better time for you to be extremely cautious while operating your vehicle.

Our Denton TX mechanics want to offer three tips that will keep you from being the center of attention in an automobile accident, whether it is a minor fender-bender or a major catastrophe. First and foremost, do not speed. Make sure you’re slowing down your driving pace significantly. The smallest sheet of ice can cause a lot of damage not only to you but to others around you.

One thing people – primarily in warmer-climate states – tend to forget about is black ice. Following an ice storm, black ice – the non-visible ice that accumulates on side streets, bridges and overpasses – is one of the most dangerous hazards of an early-morning commute to work. The fact that you can’t see it makes it very intimidating, as well as frightening.

Lastly, when it comes to ice, if you don’t have to drive on it, don’t. Our Denton car care experts suggest that you stay at home if you don’t have to get on the roads. If you do have to drive, use the aforementioned tips, and be very careful.

Feel free to contact our Denton TX automotive shop for more tips on how to drive on the ice effectively. Call us today, or visit us online for details.


Burn Cooler – Why Engines Overheat

Engine care specialists in Denton TexasUnfortunately, an overheating engine is a common problem and, often, this is simply due to lack of care and maintenance on the vehicle in question. While you may not have to seek the expertise of a local Denton mechanic for every issue that pops up with your automobile, it is important to run routine maintenance and checkups on your car to assure it continues to function properly and that no small problem leads to larger ones. Part of this involves knowing how to spot signs of trouble and diagnose them. When your engine overheats, there are six likely causes to inspect.

  1. Sensor Misfire. This is not a sign that your engine is overheating; rather, if there are no other clues (smoking radiator, etc) leading you to believe that the engine is running too hot aside from a warning light, your sensor could be faulty or shorting out. This will send a signal back to the vehicle and make it believe it is overheating.
  2. Low Coolant. Antifreeze and water work together to keep the temperature in your engine regulated. Low coolant will result in an overheated engine, and while you can temporarily restore your car’s functionality by adding water to the mix, you will need to replace the coolant at the first opportunity.
  3. Thermostat. The thermostat helps monitor the temperature of the engine so the cooling system can do its job properly to maintain a constant climate within your car’s motor. However, the temperature gauge can fail, leading to improper balance due to the thermostat not opening at the right time and, therefore, blocking the flow of coolant.
  4. Faulty Cooling Fan. The name says it all: the fan is used to cool the engine. Should it malfunction and not properly fan what’s under your car’s hood, you will inevitably find your engine overheating. In addition, the radiator cannot function properly without the cooling fan, complicating the original issue.
  5. Loose Radiator Cap. Believe it or not, this is perhaps the most common cause of ‘overheating engines’. In fact, if the radiator cap is loose or improperly attached, water and steam can leak from the hole and boil over onto other metal parts, making steam appear from under your hood. Relax, pull over, shut off the engine, and WAIT. Never touch a hot radiator. Once the car has cooled, you can properly fit the cap back in place.
  6. Water Pump Failure. Without the water pump functioning properly, water will not circulate through the cooling system, and you will surely see overheating, since the heat will have no means of escape.

Consider these issues, and if you cannot locate the problem causing your car to overheat, or if you need assistance in repairing the problem, don’t hesitate to call a car repair company in Denton to assist you. Letting a professional auto mechanic do the job will assure everything has been installed or repaired correctly so you can count on your car to cool down and remain safe.


7 Ways to Winterize Your Vehicle

Denton auto repair servicesWhen the cold weather rolls in each year, people think about winterizing their homes, their boats, and other expensive assets, but for some reason, cars don’t come to mind. However, to continue to get the best performance from your vehicle and avoid little things going wrong that could turn into major system failures, winterizing your automobile is essential, even In North Texas, where the weather doesn’t get or stay as cold as it does up north. This maintenance can be quite simple, if you schedule an appointment with your local Denton automotive repair shop. Here are the things to consider.

Windshield wiper replacement – While not as much of a concern in the dry Texas summers, windshield wipers are essential to visibility in the winter during the rain, snow, and ice storms that tend to plague the region. Tire pressurization – Essential to traction as well as fuel mileage, tire pressure changes with temperature, usually getting lower in the cold weather. Your tire pressure should be increased, monitored and maintained.

Examine belts and hoses – If you are at your 30,000-mile scheduled maintenance mark, your local mechanic will do this for you anyway, inspecting them for wear and tear. At the same time, an extra glance before the cold weather weakens the rubber too drastically is always a good safety precaution.

Check your battery – The cold weather makes it harder for the car to start anyway, and if there is corrosion on your battery’s posts or connections, or if the water is low, you are begging to be stranded. Make sure your battery is clean and in good working order before you have to count on a sympathetic passer-by to jump-start your vehicle.

Oil change – While this should be part of your regularly scheduled vehicle maintenance, in the winter, you want to pay special attention to the weight of the oil you are using. Oil thickens in the cold weather, so you’ll want to use a lighter weight oil to assure your engine is properly lubricated. Talk to a Denton auto technician or consult your owner’s manual for recommendations.

Mix your antifreeze – Make sure you have a 50/50 mix of antifreeze and water in the radiator to prevent freezing of the coolant in your car that leads to a busted radiator or an overheated car.

Prepare for the worst – In case you are stuck in the chill of a winter storm, have an emergency kit in your car containing a blanket, boots and gloves, an ice scraper, food and water, a flashlight, flares, jumper cables, a first aid kit, paper towels, and an ice scraper. If you follow these guidelines and have a qualified Denton automotive expert help you with the technical issues, you’ll be set for winter. You put a lot of faith in your vehicle to get you from Point A to Point B on demand – do what you can to assure that trust is earned!