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Motorsports, Automotive, And Repair Articles

4 Signs You Need a New Car Battery

Before your car dies completely, it often gives you signals that something is not right. To prevent a situation that involves calling a tow truck to take your vehicle to a car repair shop, watch for these common warning signs that your battery is running low.

Your Engine Complains

Certified Car Care says that if your engine takes a long time to start or makes sluggish noises, it might be time for a new battery. Extreme temperatures especially tend to make your engine sound louder than normal.

Your Engine Light Appears

The symbols that appear on your dashboard shouldn’t be ignored. If you see the check engine light, it might be an indication of a low battery, as well as a number of other auto maintenance issues.

Your Battery Case is Bloated

Take some time to peek under the hood on a hot day. High temperatures can cause a battery case to swell, decreasing the life of your battery.

Low Fluid Level

All batteries have a translucent casing so you can see the fluid level. If you notice that it’s below the lead plates, drive to your local auto repair shop for a new replacement.

Everyone wants a dependable vehicle. Looking out for signs of a faulty battery can save you a more expensive trip to a car repair shop down the road.

Wiring Your own Trailer Hitch Might be Best Left to the Pros

Attaching aftermarket trailer hitches may make it so that your vehicle is capable of pulling a trailer, however, it can be a tricky business. While many things today are of the plug-and-play variety, the wiring kits for brake lights and turn signals are not always quick and easy to figure out. Some vehicle owners have found out the hard way that their novice wiring job has not gone as intended.  Melted wires and blown fuses have caused much frustration for those intent on saving money by doing the job themselves. Even more upsetting to some are the flashing blue and red lights in the rearview mirror as they are pulled over for lights that are not working.

RV Specialists states that in order to insure that your hitch lights are going to work as needed, it may be best to leave the electrical guesswork to the pros. By letting the professionals work on the installation of your trailer hitch, you can be assured that everything, including the wiring, will work correctly. There is much to be said for safety and peace of mind.

Should you need one more reason to let professionals install your hitch, just walk outside and take a look at the vehicle you plan to tow. Chances are good that a malfunctioning hitch or poor wiring could end up damaging both your vehicle and whatever you are towing behind it. By leaving your installation to the pros, you may be, in essence, protecting your valuable investments.

Restore Your Old Clunker to Like-New Performance Using Expert Dodge Service



Unlike Kia or some of those other newer car brands, Dodge is an American automobile maker that has served the transportation needs of many generations. It follows that there are a lot of old cars bearing this brand name, and not all of them are well-preserved antiques. When it comes to restoring performance to older, seemingly-worn out hand-me-down vehicles, there are a few reasons why the best expert for you to turn to may very well prove to be a certified Dodge service professional. These experts are more likely to know the ins and outs of Dodge cars, truck, and vans.

It is not just the model that makes a difference in vehicle performance, as every automobile brand tends to have its own idiosyncrasies. While some of these unique characteristics change over time, there are many factors that serve as signatures for the manufacturer. These signatures may evolve, but auto repair experts who specialize in a particular brand or the other are more likely to understand these factors. The knowledge of these professionals provide a great benefit when servicing the cars they are certified to service, especially when those vehicles are of a model that is no longer being produced.

If you rely on a certified Dodge service technician for performing repairs on your old Dodge, then you increase the chances of restoring the automobile’s performance to a level that is like-new or better.

How to Transport A Dune Buggy

If you are considering purchasing or building a dune buggy, you definitely want to consider how you are going to transport it from point A to point B. There are many laws when it comes to transporting a recreational vehicle and you want to ensure you have done your research. Courtesy of JM4 Motorsports, below are a few tips on the best way to transport your dune buggy.

It is possible that your buggy could be street legal, but the laws for street buggies vary from state to state. There are a few general requirements to be considered street legal such as windshield wipers, headlights, blinkers, seat belts, vehicle identification and a speedometer. It is also important to note that each buggy you intend to drive on the street has to be properly licensed and insured.

If you plan on towing your buggy to the sandy metropolis, equip yourself with the right gear. Most buggies can be towed on a trailer, a dolly or in the bed of a truck if it happens to be small enough. If pulled by a dolly or strapped onto a trailer, you will need your buggy to be ready with tow bars and hooks. These also come in handy later when you are venturing in the sand or mud.

The best way to transport your dune buggy is determined by you. It is always best to do your research before heading to the dunes to ensure you are following all of the your state laws.

How Does My Air Conditioner Work In My Car?

Car AC Repair

Any air conditioning system that is capable of lowering temperatures will operate in a similar way. So let’s go over the basics of an A/C system. The air conditioning system uses Freon that is in a sealed system and pressurized by using a compressor. When the system is pressurized it will get hot by absorbing the heat around it which is then turned into a gas. The hot gas circulates through several tubes that will disperse the heat. The gas will loose most of its heat when you reduce the pressure in the system, then as it cools will turn into a liquid. Once in a liquid form it can now create cold air.

To be able to use this system in a car took very little adaption from its original source, the refrigeration cooling unit. The air conditioning unit in your car will have a condenser, a compressor, an evaporator, a few sensors and cooling hoses. Below is a description of what some of these components are responsible for.

The Compressor is responsible for taking the Freon or gas and pressurizing it so it can cool the air. It is run by a fan belt on your motor and is the main component of your A/C system.

The Condenser is mounted in the front of your car near your cars radiator. It acts as a small radiator that passes the hot compressed air through and as it cools it turns into a liquid.

The evaporator is also a little radiator that does the reverse of what the condenser does. When the cold liquid passes through its tubes, air is pushed through and creates the cold air coming out of your vent.

The Accumulator or drier is really a safety system for your air conditioner. The drier is responsible for catching any liquid before it gets to your compressor.

Staying Cool On The Go In Your RV

Owning an RV is all about taking the comforts of home with you out onto the open road. These vehicles are a perfect way to explore the world in a way that is safe and family-friendly, and you want to be able to withstand whatever nature throws at you. This is why it is important to keep all your systems up and running with the proper RV parts. One essential system in particular is the air conditioning. Regular maintenance and repair is the key to keeping your AC up and running.

Luckily, there is nothing to fear – experienced technicians are ready to help, no matter the job at hand. Your source for repairs and RV parts should be able to work with many different models of AC. They should also provide standard checks and cleaning, as well as part replacements if any problems are found. Many companies can also provide expert installations, as well as follow up checks and maintenance. Leaving it to the professionals is the best way to ensure you get the job done right. Now you can travel in both style and comfort at all times with a well maintained RV.

Finding the right source for all your RV maintenance is easy with just a bit of research. Staying up to date on all the parts and fixes you need ensures that your vehicle will be ready to head out whenever the spirit moves you, leaving no nasty surprises to be found at the last minute. Now the whole family can set out for adventure together whenever they want.

Replacing the Battery in a Toyota Prius

Location of Prius Battery

The Toyota Prius has been a very dependable car but there is a life span on the nickel metal hybrid battery packs. There are several replacement options available to Prius owners approaching replacement time. If you have seen reduced performance or a warning light coming on the dash it is probably time to look at replacing your batteries. This usually happens around 150,000 miles and should be taken care of. You could look at it this way, the Toyota Prius transmission has no wearable parts, so if you were to compare the cost of replacing the batteries to the cost of replacing a transmission in a less reliable car you are way ahead of the game.

The first option you have for replacing the batteries in your Toyota Prius is to have it done at the dealership an experience that many consumers have walk away with sticker shock. Many of the batteries sold by an aftermarket company or the dealership are remanufactured which is not a terrible thing if the manufacturer did the job correctly.

For a remanufactured battery pack for the Toyota Prius that goes into a 2000 to 2003, the cost runs $1400.00 and for 2004 to 2010 the batteries will cost around $1500.00. You can go online and it is possible to find individual replacement batteries at a low price to get you back on the road, but mixing and matching batteries for a hybrid is a bad idea. The cells in the batteries need to be balanced properly by using professional equipment. Ignoring this can lead to a hydrogen fire or overcharged cells.

If you are on a tight budget and do not mind doing a little leg work, finding replacement batteries in a junk yard can sometime cost as little as $600.00. The only disadvantage to this you have no idea how long the batteries will last you. Toyota has been selling the Prius since 1999 which tells you there a lot of them out there on the road today. Many have reached battery replacement and when you are ready, keep in mind it is not going to be cheap, but it does not have to leave you broke either. When it does come time to replace the battery is it recommended to have either a Toyota dealer or certified repair shop do it for you. You can find many online by searching for Prius Repair San Diego or similar keywords.

When Should I Have My Brakes Inspected?

When looking into having your brakes repaired, the cost will depend on what type of brake repair service you are going to need. When driving and you apply your brakes and hear noises such as grinding, screeching or squeaking, you will want to have your brakes inspected immediately.

There are many problems that can be associated with your brakes going bad. You can have worn out calipers, brake drums, brake pads, a bad master brake cylinder, or just a being low on fluid can cause brake issues. Having low fluid in your braking system is an easy fix that most people can solve themselves. Make sure and check your owner’s manual to verify the type of brake fluid that is required. Top off the brake fluid to the suggested level and test the brakes to make sure they are not spongy. If they are spongy this means there is air in the lines and it will need to be bleed out. This should be done by a professional mechanic to assure the job is done correctly. If the brakes do not feel spongy then you are good to go. Check the fluid level periodically to make sure the level stays the same. If it goes down again this will indicate there is a leak in the system.

The most common problem with brakes will be worn out pads or drums. Since your car brakes use friction to stop the car, the pads will wear down over time. If you start to hear squeaking coming from your brakes when you apply them, this is a sign it is time to have them checked. Ignoring squeaking brakes will eventually lead to a grinding noise which means the pads are worn down and the metal in the pads are rubbing on the drum or rotor. By reaching the grinding phase of your brakes has now resulted in a very costly repair. A repair that could have cost around $100.00 has turned into several hundred dollars.