Engine Repair,Car shop,mechanics
Written by Stu Kushner

Will Your Vehicle’s Engine Fail?

Engine Repair Help

Your vehicle’s engine will fail if you do not follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding its use and maintenance schedule or fail to pay attention to signs of problems. An engine that requires repair or replacement is typically the most expensive problem a car owner will have to address. This article will discuss the five most common reasons an engine will fail.

Dismissing Check Engine Light

Ignoring a check engine light (service engine soon light on some cars) is a good way to allow an engine to undergo a damaging condition. The check engine light can be activated due to many different conditions these days, not just an oxygen sensor or catalytic converter. It would be wise to bring your vehicle to a service center for diagnosis as soon as possible after the check engine light turns on.

Engine Flooding

A sudden heavy rainstorm can bring rapid flooding to roads in low-lying areas, where cars are trapped in high water. If a car is driven through a flooded area and water passes through the intake manifold, which provides an engine’s air-fuel mixture, and then into the combustion chamber, it may result in bent piston rods and a severely damaged engine.

Ignoring Oil Level

Ignoring an oil leak from your engine is a good way to end its life prematurely. Losing oil simply means losing lubrication, resulting in accelerated and damaging wear to an engine’s metal parts and leading to its eventual failure.

Not Changing Oil

Performing regular oil changes at the recommended intervals by the manufacturer is essential for an engine’s good health and long service life. It is also crucial to utilize the proper oil required by your vehicle’s engine. Many car manufacturers are specifying synthetic oils for newer vehicles so their engines can perform at their very best while consuming fuel efficiently.

Overlooking Cooling System

Automotive experts recommend an engine coolant flush at intervals of 30,000 miles or every three years, whichever comes first. Unfortunately the majority of car owners do not pay attention to their vehicle’s cooling system until it has deteriorated or been damaged. As a result, the cooling system will not function properly or will leak coolant, leading to an engine overheating and becoming seriously damaged.

Last Advice

Chesapeake Import Services has provided reputable and trusted services to Annapolis and the surrounding areas since 1991. Call us for an appointment today at (410) 267-8411. We will be very happy to see you.

Engine Repair, car mechanic, Annapolis MD
Written by Jessica Golden

Preparing Your Car for Winter Driving

Engine Repair, car mechanic, Annapolis MDAs winter approaches, it is critical to prepare your car before the onset of severe weather. Your very life and those of your passengers may depend on it. Below is a simple guide to help ensure your safety on the road when the ice and snow start falling.

Preventive Maintenance

Bring your vehicle to a trusted service center for a checkup. Have the technician check the brakes, lights, battery (if accessible), hoses, belts, cooling system components, heating systems, and exhaust system.

Install Winter Tires

Snow tires are a good idea if you live in a climate where it snows frequently with large amounts of accumulation. Mount four matching tires marked with Snowflake/Mountain Winter tire symbol, built with a tread of at least 3.5 mm. M+S marked tires indicating they are for Mud & Snow comply with laws, but they will not provide the same performance as winter tires, which provide improved traction in rough conditions.

Winter Blades

Sleet and snow will fall during winter, and so it is advisable to swap regular wiper blades for winter wiper blades. The latter are constructed more stoutly and are more able to sweep aside ice and snow from a car’s windshield.

Ensure Visibility

Make sure that your visibility is unhindered. Use a scraper to clean off ice and snow from the windshield, lights, windows, rearview mirrors, the hood, and the roof. Allow your car to defrost the windows completely before driving off.

Survival Kit and Trunk Items

An essential for winter driving is storing a survival kit in the trunk, along with other auto equipment and supplies. Items should include blankets, boots, radio, non-perishable food, water, first aid supplies, flashlight, flares, engine oil, washer fluid, coolant, spare tire, and tools. Keep in mind that many new cars don’t come with a spare tire, only an inflation kit. If the car doesn’t have run-flat tires, make sure you know what you have and how to use it.

Cell Phone (s)

A functioning cell phone will come in handy during emergencies. Carry a charger in your car and keep your mobile phone plugged into it to make sure it is fully charged and available when needed. If you have an old cell phone you are not using, that still works, make sure it is fully charged and turned off. Put it in your glove box as a backup in case you can’t charge your regular one. If there is an emergency and your regular phone is dead, you can still call 911 even if the phone is not connected to a carrier.

Last Advice

Chesapeake Import Services has provided reputable and trusted services to Annapolis and the surrounding areas since 1991 and currently offer the following benefits:

  • Service specials for both new and returning customers.
  • Courteous, professional management and staff.
  • Large, clean and comfortable waiting area.
  • Free Wi-Fi.
  • Convenient location in the heart of Annapolis.
  • 24 month/24,000 mile warranty on parts and labor (some exclusions apply).
  • Modern, well-equipped facility utilizing the latest technology and equipment.
  • Prompt, reliable services and quality repairs.
  • Professional and accurate diagnostics for modern vehicle systems.

Call us for an appointment today at (410) 267-8411. We will be very happy to see you.

Auto Repair, car maintenance, Annapolis MD
Written by Jessica Golden

Sure Signs of a Faulty Engine Control Unit (ECU) and What to Do

 Auto Repair, car maintenance, Annapolis MD

A major component of a vehicle‘s computer system, the ECU, regulates systems and subsystems of the engine, drive train and other major components. A defective ECU will affect the performance and efficiency, and a certified mechanic should be consulted regarding its replacement or repair. The following are five signs of a faulty ECU and what you should do.

Start Failure

A clear indication that there may be a faulty ECU is if your car refuses to start without any apparent reason. After your repair shop runs through its checklist inspection, including the car battery, starter, and alternator, and the vehicle still fails to start, a bad engine control unit should be suspected as being the cause.

Check Engine Light

Although there are several reasons a check engine light turns on, one of the most likely reasons is a problematic ECU. Once the check engine light is constantly on, it is time to have your car’s ECU inspected by an experienced mechanic.

Economy and Performance

An unusual increase in fuel consumption or poor engine performance can be attributed to either car computer problems or a defective ECU.

Transmission Issues

Defective ECUs may cause automatic transmission issues, involving sudden jerking or stopping when shifting gears, even though your service facility has been performing proper and timely maintenance.

Diagnostics

A suspected damaged or failing electronic control unit should be quickly addressed. Only select a service center equipped with up-to-date computer diagnostic equipment because an ECU is a complex component that works with your car’s computer system.

By visiting a manufacturer- certified facility, you’ll ensure accurate readings.

ECU Servicing Costs

Servicing ECUs can be expensive. Depending on the car, a new ECU replacement may run from $1,000 to $3,000. Labor costs of around $600 are additional. However, in many cases repairing or reprogramming is possible, saving a lot of money. Expect to pay between $300 to $750 for this service, along with a $150-$300 fee for inspecting and testing the engine control unit first.

Last Advice

Chesapeake Import Services has provided reputable and trusted services to Annapolis and the surrounding areas since 1991 and currently offers the following benefits:

  • Service specials for both new and returning customers.
  • Courteous, professional management and staff.
  • Large, clean and comfortable waiting area.
  • Free Wi-Fi.
  • Convenient location in the heart of Annapolis.
  • 24 month/24,000 mile warranty on parts and labor (some exclusions apply).
  • Modern, well-equipped facility utilizing the latest technology and equipment.
  • Prompt, reliable services and quality repairs.
  • Professional and accurate diagnostics for modern vehicle systems.

Call us for an appointment today at (410) 267-8411. We will be very happy to see you.

auto repair shop, Annapolis MD
Written by Jessica Golden

Strength in Numbers

CAR FoundersIndependent auto service centers are banding together to use their combined strength to gain buying power and to help pass favorable legislation. Chesapeake Import Services was a founder of this group. The group they helped start is the Council of Automotive Repair (CAR).

Back in 2008, six Maryland shop owners created this organization: Billy Hillmuth (Hillmuth Certified Automotive with four locations in Maryland), Stephen Powell (Thoroughbred Auto Care in Laurel), Frank Eberle (Eberle Automotive in Severn), Clyde McLaughlin (Chesapeake Import Services in Annapolis), Walt Eger (Walt Eger’s Service Center in Severn), and Lewis Schnauble (Schnauble Automotive in Westminster).

  • CAR was created to give a collective voice the chance to speak on behalf of the many independent shops in the Maryland-Delaware area.
  • These seven successful shop owners knew each other through WMDA, and all were mired by typical dilemmas facing independent repair shops: rising parts and equipment prices; expensive training costs; and legislation affecting their operations.

Since WMDA heavily focused on service stations, they decided it would be beneficial to start a similar group focused on auto care.

Click here to read the entire article.