Archive for February 2010
I admit it. I used to drive a few miles out of my way to save a few cents a gallon. But now that gas is nearly $3.00 a gallon, those pennies don’t seem to matter as much. Nonetheless, before you go hunting for cheap gas deals, consider these sure-fire ways to stop these common problems that can reduce your gas mileage by as much as 25% in the aggregate. Most of these items are cheaper than doing mechanical repairs on your automobile or truck.
- Check your tire pressure monthly. Under-inflated tires especially can rob you of as much as 10% of your fuel economy, cause serious safety issues, and lead to excess wear on tires (which results in you needing to replace them much quicker than normal).
- Have your alignment checked every six months, or more frequently if you’ve been driving on rough terrain or have hit any potholes or curbs lately. Just like incorrectly inflated tires, bad alignment will affect fuel economy as well as cause abnormal wear on your tires.
- Every two years, take your car to your trusted Austin auto repair facility to see if your engine needs tuning up. A badly running engine is inefficient and bad for the environment as well. You may not need a tune-up every two years, but it certainly is worth having it checked out to make sure.
- Change your air filter every 12,000 miles. DO NOT HAVE THE DUST/DIRT BLOWN OUT. The high pressure air from typical air blowers will actually create larger holes in the filter, which allow more dirt into your engine, creating a worse situation than before! Air filters are cheap, so don’t be penny-wise and pound-foolish.
- Have your fuel injectors cleaned annually or every 12,000 miles. Your fuel injectors get clogged up from dirt in the fuel, which creates energy robbing deposit buildups in the injectors and combustion chamber. A complete injector cleaning will keep your engine running smoothly and only runs about $120.
You might not think a 25% reduction in fuel economy would be substantial, but if you put a pencil to it, based on $3.00 gas, driving 15,000 miles a year in a vehicle that’s supposed to get 20 mpg, it represents a difference of $750 ! And if your car normally gets 16 mpg, the difference is $925 ! Every year. For every car you have . Think about that the next time you’re out hunting for the cheapest gas in town.
If your car is making funny noises or refusing to start, it can put you in a tough spot but even worse, car problems can put you and your family at risk. We have often heard customers say they feel the same about taking their car to their mechanic as they do about taking themselves to the dentist – they just want to know how much it’s going to hurt and how much it’s going to cost.
Keeping your car running well doesn’t have to be overly time-consuming or expensive if you find an auto repair shop you trust. Lawson Tire & Automotive has the best Austin mechanics that will treat you and your car with the care and respect you deserve.
“I took my car in to Lawson to get a new tire, an alignment and some other minor issues. They ordered a tire to specifications only to find that my previous tire salesman had sold me tires that were a different size. At no extra charge and only a little extra time to order the matching tire I was out of there with exactly what I needed, at the original quoted price and with no upsell. Thanks Jeff and Steve,” Brett Morris recently wrote to us.
We know how hard it is to find a mechanic and an auto repair shop you can go back to each time. Here are some handy tips to help you find the right auto mechanic in Austin:
- Ask neighbors, family, friends and business associates about their experience with a repair facility or mechanic – shops and mechanics that have earned their respect, earned it for a reason.
- Find out if the facility employs ASE-certified technicians because ASE tests and certifies automotive professionals in all areas of auto repair and service.
- Ask how long the facility has been in business – any repair shop that provides honest, high-quality service at a fair price over the years is more likely to stay around than a lesser facility.
- Observe the shop’s cleanliness and organization, lobby and bathrooms. While this may seem a superficial test at best, it goes a long way when deciding how carefully the facility is managed and how the mechanics feel about their place of work.
Once you select an auto repair shop, taking your car to that shop for regular maintenance, expected repairs, and even oil changes, ensures that the car mechanics are more familiar with your vehicle and can notice when something needs to be repaired before it causes further damage or problems to your vehicle.
“The quality and speed of the repair service from your mechanics and integrity of the customer service by Jeff is simply a recipe for great success. Thank you Steve for taking the time to explain to me clearly the details of my repair job. It solved my nagging car problem that my dealer struggled with for months without success. Wish I had been referred to you years ago!” wrote Keith M.
At Lawson Tire & Automotive, we take pride in long-standing relationships with our customers and we want to see you come back with your vehicle when you need it repaired in the future. We won’t tell you something needs to be fixed when it doesn’t. We won’t tell you we fixed something when we didn’t do the repair. We’re part of your Austin community and we always want it to stay that way.
Just a thought… I’m sure there are tons of you out there…. Currently, due to the massive recall, Toyota dealers are swamped, and will probably be so for a month or more. If you’ve been looking to a chance to wean yourself off overpriced dealer service, this is your chance to establish a new relationship. If you’re in Austin, and have an auto repair or maintenance issue NOT related to the recall, we would love to be given the chance to earn your business and trust.