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The Necessities of Summer Road Trips

18/09/03 BY  GERRY

1993 Jeep Wrangler rests underneath the Grand Teton range.  Photo by: Scott Allen

A 1993 Jeep Wrangler rests underneath the Grand Teton range. Photo by: Scott Allen

The warm summer months are an ideal time of the year for many things: swimming, barbecues and most certainly, road trips.

We as humans are eager for mobility. Even as infants, we yearn to be able to walk around with our older siblings, but it takes some time for mammals to get their land legs. It’s important to understand it’s in our blood and we MUST travel.

Author Erol Ozan says it best: “some beautiful paths can’t be discovered without getting lost.”

It’s necessary to get lost at times, but you must make sure to follow a few rules of the road while traveling this summer.


The main concern for everyone should be safety. According to a 2013 study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, June-September are the most deadly months of the year, with August topping the charts. The main reason for this is the sheer number of drivers on the road, especially with school out (sorry kiddos) and more people on vacation.


A big problem is the temperature. According to, “tire pressure will go up approximately one pound for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit,”  and the heat can do a number on your tires. Hot weather causes the air inside your tires to expand, which can lead to a blowout in well-worn wheels. Check your tires on a regular basis during the summer months, especially during heat waves, by doing the classic “penny method” test.
Under-inflated tires are most at risk. The lack of air pressure puts the tires’ components under increased strain; but over-inflated ones are more likely to hydroplane in a summer rainstorm. An even balance must be maintained.

Another big problem is operator malfunctions. The AA reminds us to take certain precautions such as taking multiple frequent stops, being hydrated and avoiding heavy meals and alcohol while operating a motor vehicle. Another tried and true method is to play loud music or blast the air conditioner, the cold air should shutter you back awake from your driver comatose.

Vision is another cause for accidents. Dirty windows, sun glare and overly-darkened sunglasses can affect your ability to see the lines on the road. Cleaning your windshield while pumping gas will only take you five minutes and it may be the difference between smooth sailing and jackknifing.


The stakes are high, but this summer has a lot of good sides to it. The number one plus is gas prices.
According to an April article by, a single gallon of gasoline will cost an average of $2.45 between the Easter month and September and this year’s prices were at an all-time low since 2009. The affordable gas will most certainly result in more people on the road. The wild card in this situation will be California, which operates almost as a separate gasoline market from the rest of the country.

Texas is well off in the marketplace, coming in at 9th for the lowest gas prices according to Houston has been averaging under 2.40 per gallon for the beginning of July.

Oil now sells for about half of what it did early last summer and American drivers continue to pay more than $1 per gallon less than they did a year ago. This will cause more people to be on the road, but if people are cautious and take the necessary steps, then every person’s road-trip will seem like a Sunday afternoon cruise down Route 66.

route 66 photo

Windshield Wiper Tips

18/09/03 BY  GERRY

Windshield wipers are important because they allow you to drive effectively by being able to see the road ahead clearly. Windshield wipers need to be changed regularly in order to continue to provide this clear view.
Windshield wipers are always wearing down because of the dust, dirt and debris that are constantly in the air and hitting the windshield. When we turn on the wipers, all the dirt and water is pushed aside allowing us to see the road. If you notice that streaks of water are left on the windshield or you do not have a clear view of the road ahead when using your wipers, it’s time to buy a new set.
You can extend your wipers by cleaning them regularly with soap and water and rubbing alcohol. Also, keeping a clean exterior windshield is a great way to ensure that there is no unnecessary buildup of dust and debris on the windshield.
By regularly cleaning and changing your blades, you can ensure that they will properly clean your windshield for safer driving.

Getting Your Car Ready For Winter

18/09/03 BY  GERRY

Driving a vehicle in the winter is very different than driving one in the summer time. When it snows, the roads get covered and the snow can turn to ice, which produces slippery conditions. With winter approaching, you will need to make sure your vehicle is prepared for winter driving.
Make sure that you have your tires rotated and that they are at the right pressure rating so that they are in their optimum condition.
You should also change your windshield wipers. You can also purchase special windshield washer fluid that does not freeze and de-ices the windshield.
Driving during the winter requires you to be better prepared. Making sure that you and your vehicle are ready will ensure that you make it through a winter season safely.
Bring your car to Auto World and we’d be happy to inspect your car to make sure it’s ready for winter.

Keeping a Maintenance Log

18/09/03 BY  GERRY

Many car manufacturers are now requiring that vehicle owners keep a detailed log of all maintenance and service that the vehicle receives. The logs will be required to be produced during a warranty claim, depending on the manufacturer.
A lot of owner’s manuals now come with a maintenance log that is located in the back. It will have columns for you to fill out such as the type of service performed, the date of service and who performed it. Many maintenance tasks are required to be performed by a professional in order to have a satisfactory maintenance log that complies with warranty guidelines.
Although it may be less expensive to try and perform car maintenance on your own, it could cost you a lot of money in the long run in the form of a rejected warranty claim. All of your car maintenance needs can be professionally performed right here at Auto World, and we’ll keep all of the necessary records for you.
You do not have to go back to the dealer for service to keep your warranty in force.

Properly Warming Up Your Car in the Winter

18/09/03 BY  GERRY

During the winter time, temperatures can get so low that cars need extra time to warm up, before they can be driven. Cold temperatures can put undue stress on a car’s engine which can create problems in the future.
The best thing a person can do with a car that is in a cold area is to start the car and let it idle for 10 or more minutes. This will ensure that the oil is warmed up and it will also warm the interior temperature of the car.
A unique device that can be used to start the vehicle from inside the home or office is a car starter. When the driver hits the button, the device turns the car on and lets it run for 15 minutes or other set amount of time. If the driver leaves the heater in the on position, the car’s interior will be nice and warm. This device can be purchased at a store like Best Buy or Mobile One.
By allowing your vehicle to warm up, you not only ensure that you will be entering a warm car, but you will also make certain the car is ready to be driven.

Why Should I Flush Out My Transmission Fluid?

18/09/03 BY  GERRY

After a while your transmission’s essential parts start to get blocked with varnish and sludge deposits therefore inhibiting the flow of transmission fluid throughout the transmission. This is caused because automatic transmission fluid is susceptible to damage from heat, friction and electrochemical degradation. In fact, nearly 90% of transmissions failures are due to overheating of the transmission and transmission fluid contamination.

A normal transmission service only removes 25% of the contaminated transmission fluid. The rest stays in the torque converter, valve body and transmission lines. Adding new fluid to the remaining contaminated fluid can actually loosen sludge and varnish deposit’s that eventually clogs filters and further restricts fluid flow. This can result in a serious malfunction or even complete failure of your automatic transmission.

At Auto World we do a complete Transmission Fluid Exchange which safely removes the varnish and sludge deposits. Our transmission fluid flush removes the fluid from the cooler lines, torque converter and valve body and also removes the wear material metals that slowly grind away your transmissions components.

If you haven’t had your transmission fluid flushed out in the last 30,000 miles, it’s time for a transmission fluid exchange. It may help you avoid a major breakdown.

19,000,000 (million) transmissions fail every year, is yours going to be one of them?!

Let one of our certified technicians perform this service for you.

Why Should I Flush My Power Steering Fluid?

18/09/03 BY  GERRY

At some point drivers encounter a problem with their power steering system on their vehicle, anything from noise to stiff steering or fluid leaks or hard turning when the vehicle is cold. Normal driving causes your power steering fluid to get damaged from heat, friction and electrochemical degradation.

New power steering fluid starts clean and clear but eventually turns dark with age. Varnish and sludge deposits can build up in your power steering system and affect the ease of turning and responsive handling.

By flushing out your power steering fluid you remove the sludge and varnish deposits. It is also the best way to remove the tiny metal particles that slowly grind away your power steering internal components such as the power steering hoses, pump, rack and pinion and or gear box.

It is recommended that power steering fluid be flushed every 30,000 miles. If your vehicles power steering fluid is showing signs of contamination. Do this before it becomes a major expense.

Dirty, neglected power steering fluid can look like used engine oil and can compromise the performance of your steering system, and in some cases, even cause damage.

Benefits of a Power Steering Flush Service
· Less Noise and Decreased Steering effort
· Increased steering effectiveness
· Keep seals soft and help prevent leakage and wear
· Prevent expensive repairs of power steering components

Let one of our certified technicians perform this service for you today!


Why Preventive Maintenance?

18/09/03 BY  GERRY

Car manufacturers realize that a properly maintained car will be more dependable, safer, last longer and be more economical. Car manufacturers and owners together have a responsibility to make sure that emission controls are functioning properly. Regular maintenance helps achieve these goals by keeping your engine running efficiently and eliminating any potential problems that may leave you stranded.

Why should you do this?

Because it:
· Saves you money!
· Gives you a more dependable vehicle
· Helps your vehicle retain that “new vehicle feel” longer
· Causes less of a chance for a costly breakdown
· Provides a safer vehicle for you and your family
· Is your responsibility to do your part for cleaner air
· Gives you a car that is worth more at trade in or sale
· Keeps your warranty intact

Manufacturer’s Maintenance Schedules

Manufacturers form detailed maintenance schedules for you to follow. They outline specific operations to be performed on various components and systems at different mileage intervals. This is done to ensure proper operation and prevent premature wear. Manufacturers also indicate specific services that must be done to maintain the factory warranty and extended warranty.