Wednesday, December 30, 2015

A Wheel Alignment Benefits Your Entire Car

Everyone knows that a wheel alignment, also called tracking, extends the life of your tires, but it is also incredibly beneficial to several parts of your car. By adjusting the angle your tires hit the ground, you can positively affect your vehicle's axles, suspension, steering, and even fuel economy. The next time you want to put off having your vehicle properly tracked, consider these other systems that are affected by that little "pull."


When the tires of your vehicle haven't been properly tracked, you begin putting pressure on other systems in your car in order to keep the car straight. This most heavily affects the steering. When a tire is angled incorrectly, your car begins to "pull" to the left or the right. To compensate for this change in direction, you steer towards the left or right. Over the life of the vehicle, this minor annoyance wears down your vehicle's steering column. It also causes "play," or give, in the steering, which can become worse the more you drive.

Fuel Economy

When your tires are not properly straightened, the weight of your car is not evenly distributed on the road. Often, your axles will push together, making your car experience more rolling resistance with the pavement. More of the tread makes contact with the ground, meaning your engine has to work harder and use more fuel in order to keep you and your vehicle moving forward. Angling the tires correctly reduces the friction from the road surface, resulting in a smoother ride and fewer stops at the gas pump.


For vehicles with brake pads, the brakes work by applying the pad to the surface of the tire. Brakes work better when they have more surface area in contact with the tread. With a vehicle that needs a wheel alignment, one or both tires are angled away from the brake pads. This causes the brake pads to be less effective, which increases stopping time and distance.


Because the weight of your car isn't evenly distributed over the tires, the suspension starts to carry some of the extra weight. Shocks and struts simply aren't designed to handle that weight constantly. Tires that are tracked do their fair share to support the weight of you and your car, allowing the struts and shocks to come into play only when necessary.

A wheel alignment is rarely the focus of any maintenance done to your vehicle. It is often offered with an oil change or inspection as part of a maintenance package. But making sure your tires are tracked can benefit the rest of the car and, in turn, you.

When considering wheel alignment, Fresno, CA residents visit Ray's Blackstone Tire. Learn more at
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Sunday, December 27, 2015

The BMW M3 (E30) Film. Everything About the First BMW M3 Generation.

With the BMW M3 E30 we start our five part series about the best-selling model of BMW M. The BMW M3 of the first generation is a legend. It influenced all following M3 generations. See BMW insiders give a look behind the scenes of the development of this powerful sports car. Besides the series model the limited edition “BMW M3 Sport Evolution” promises even more power. Moreover the BMW M3 was the most successful Touringcar ever.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Happy Holidays!

Warmest Thoughts and Best Wishes for a Wonderful Holiday and a Very Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Traveling for the Holidays?

Do you have plans to travel this winter? If so, there are several things you should know to keep your family safe. This article will go over car safety tips and auto check recommendations to make sure your family's vehicle is ready to handle anything Mother Nature delivers while you are traveling this winter.

Have Your Brakes Checked and Repaired Before Traveling

Before your family sets out on the road this winter, you need to have your vehicle's brakes checked and corrected before you leave. Winter weather including snow, ice, and freezing conditions can make it hard to stop, even harder if your brakes are in bad shape. Unfortunately, if you notice your brakes are failing while you are traveling, you will have to take time out of your vacation to have the car repaired. To avoid being stranded or endangered by bad brakes, you should have your brakes checked by a certified automotive technician. If the technician recommends brake repair, it is important to have this service completed as soon as possible.

Tire and Wheel Service Helps Keep Your Car on the Road

There are many everyday occurrences that can cause problems with your vehicle's tires or wheel. In fact, a dramatic stop, heavy load, minor fender bender, hitting curbs, and even normal wear and tear can cause your tires to be out of alignment or wear prematurely, which can cause a flat or even blow a tire on the road. To make sure your vehicle's tires are in tip-top shape before you travel this winter, you need to have your vehicle's tires and wheels inspected before you leave.

Engine Service Before Traveling can Help Avoid Being Stranded on the Road

Another valuable service that will help contribute to reducing your chances of being stranded on the road this winter is having your engine serviced. Whether your vehicle is making weird sounds from time to time, you've been in a minor accident, or your check engine light has come on, it's important to have your engine checked and serviced before you travel. Having an engine inspection will ensure your vehicle is efficient and help keep you safe on the road.

Oil Change and Vehicle Inspection - Often Overlooked Vital Car Service

Many people forget the importance of an oil change before traveling long distances by car. A simple oil change will restore power to your car and make your vehicle run better. It will also extend the life of your vehicle. Even better, when you schedule an oil change, you will also get a 17-point vehicle inspection. During this inspection, an auto technician will inspect vital areas of your vehicle and suggest any maintenance or repair that is needed before you begin your travels.

In the Houston, Texas, area, you can count on LMC Auto Repair to get your vehicle ready for you and your family to travel this winter. Our certified auto technicians are committed to providing the best services and parts to keep your vehicle in good working condition, which will allow you and your family to stay safer this winter. Call LMC Automotive & Collision Repair at 1-281-651-7766 to make an appointment today and get your car ready to go this winter. Located in Spring, Texas.
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Friday, December 18, 2015

5 Common Transmission Problems City-Driven Cars Experience

City life can be hard on your car. The constant stopping and starting can put a lot of stress on your transmission, causing problems with serious consequences - and costing serious money. If you notice problems when you are shifting gears, or, in automatics, when your car shifts gears, it might be time to take your car to a mechanic. Don't be caught off-guard.

1. Slippage

Have you ever been driving, and your car suddenly switched gears for no reason? It might have been accompanied by high pitch whining originating from your engine. Your car might also seem to struggle, lumber, or won't accelerate like it should. Your RPM, or revolutions per minute, might creep over 3,500.

This can be caused by a broken or worn-out transmission band. Excessive starting and stopping, especially with acceleration, causes the band to wear out quickly. This is true in both automatic and manual vehicles.

2. Rough Shifts

It might seem difficult to change gears. The gear might seem "stuck" or might not slide smoothly into place as you accelerate.

In this situation, you should first check the transmission fluid levels. In urban jungles, sunlight absorbed by the road or pavement or reflected off buildings heats up your car, which causes many of your engine's fluids to evaporate more quickly.

3. Delayed Engagement

You might notice a delay between shifting or accelerating and the car actually moving forward.

Similar to slipping or rough shifts, delayed engagement is often caused by excessive use of the transmission band. The band becomes thin and worn out and is not able to properly grip.

4. Leaks

Ideally, a transmission is a sealed unit that never leaks fluid. However, you might notice brown spots underneath your car.

This could be a sign of a bigger problem. Leaks can be caused by a number of things. Excessive heat can warp the seals for many of the valves or crack some of the more delicate parts. Since cities experience such drastic changes in temperatures, there are times a leak could just be a side effect of the liquid expanding or contracting.

5. Warning Light

A warning light alone doesn't mean you have a transmission problem, but if it occurs in conjunction with any other problems, it could be indicative of something more serious.

A warning light is generated by an error code from your car's internal computer. There are different error codes for different problems, but P0700 is the most common transmission error code. It indicates general problems in your transmission. A mechanic should be able to test your car and give you an error code.

Transmission repairs can run from as little as $40 for minor parts or adjustments to more than $3,000 to rebuild or even replace a transmission. Your mechanic or auto specialist can give you a better idea of what is wrong with your vehicle's transmission and what will need to be done to get your car running smoothly again.

When in need of help with their transmission, New York residents visit Gibraltar Transmissions. Learn more about our services at
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Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Jaguar | Ian Callum's Design Passion

Watch as Jaguar Director of Design Ian Callum discusses his life-long passion for car design in this personal and intimate film. From his humble beginnings as a car-obsessed child in Dumfries to his role at Jaguar, here is a rare chance to get to know the creative mind behind the Jaguar design process.

Originally made for Telegraph Luxury by photographer Charlie Gray and writer Michael Harvey.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

6 Car Repairs You Should Never Do Alone

While the idea of maintaining your own vehicle sounds as interesting as it is money-saving, every car owner should keep in mind that there are certain problems that can be handled only by professionals. If you like to get a little dirty on the weekends, you can deal with simple fixes like replacing the air filter or installing new wiper blades. However, try not to attempt any of these serious repairs that could cost your life.

Timing Belt Replacement

The timing belt should be replaced every 60,000 miles on average and this project is not a DIY kind. Replacing this component requires you to disassemble the engine down to smallest parts and rebuild with precision. Forgetting a timing belt replacement, or much worse, doing it the wrong way can cause serious engine damage. It can also increase your vehicle's chances of giving up on you during your darkest hour. Avoid life-threatening timing belt breaks at highway speeds and have it replaced on time by professionals.

Replacement of Suspension Parts

It may seem as easy as replacing a couple of bushings or shock absorbers, but there's more to it than meets the eye. Working with struts, arms and other suspension components can turn your weekend auto maintenance routine into quite a disaster. An amateurish stint with suspension springs can lead to serious injuries and engine damage. An incomplete or poorly done suspension job can greatly affect the stopping and turning abilities of your vehicle. So better leave it to the experts.

Fixing an Overheated Engine

There are many reasons for an overheated engine, such as a defective thermostat and dangerously low coolant levels. However, knowing these reasons or even tracing down one particular fault could not make us any better to handle the fix ourselves. Call for professional help when you find your vehicle engine heated beyond normal levels. When an engine overheats, the entire system will be under tremendous pressure and a DIY-fix is a definite no go.

Dealing with a Check Engine Light

A flashing check engine light is something that most drivers come across. It is a way of warning the driver of potential faults in the vehicle's ignition, fuel injection, emission control or other such components. A skilled technician, who is trained and certified in OBDII diagnosis and repair, will use a diagnostic scan tool to find out the faulty component that was causing the lights to stay on, flash or flash intermittently. Such repairs that demand in-depth analysis should not be handled by non-professionals to ensure safety.

Transmission Maintenance

A car's transmission system is made up of thousands of parts in a very complex design. So, if you're planning to fix repairs or carry out transmission maintenance in your own garage, it's not a great move. As soon as you hear strange noises coming out of your car, detect a burning smell or suspect other transmission faults, have your vehicle inspected by a professional. If handled by unskilled personnel, such issues can turn out to be expensive and dangerous.

Fixing Misaligned Wheels

Sudden stops, hasty driving as well as regular wear can cause wheels to misalign. Re-aligning wheels to proper position requires a caster, camber, toe and thrust angle correction to ensure that your vehicle stays straight while driving. Temporary or improper fixes can wreak havoc on tires and can be dangerous as well. Problems with brakes also demand professional attention as they are one of the most crucial components of an automobile.

Schedule regular maintenance for your car at a reliable repair shop and make sure you fix problems when they arise. And remember to stay away from dangerous repair jobs as it's better to be safe than sorry!

You can count on LMC Auto Repair to get the job done on time and within budget. The result? You and your family can drive off ready to take on whatever the road may bring. Call LMC Automotive & Collision Repair at 1-281-651-7766 to make an appointment today and get your car ready to go this winter. Or visit our website Located in Spring, Texas.
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Sunday, December 6, 2015

Car Maintenance Tips To Make Your Car Run Better

It's always nice to have a smooth running and reliable car. However, cars age and will need maintenance over time to keep on running like the day it rolled from the showroom floor. Just putting gas and kicking the tires will not do it. Maintaining a smooth-running car takes care from the owner, and the mechanic or dealer, if you are not mechanically inclined.

All cars have a maintenance schedule set by the manufacturer when they designed the car. Some cars have simple maintenance schedules while other cars need more specialized equipment and parts to keep them in tiptop shape. In general, Japanese cars are cheaper to operate and maintain. However, luxury European brands have a cachet and status all their own. There will be times when budget or work will prevent you from performing needed maintenance. Just follow the maintenance schedule as close as you can because neglecting maintenance may result in a breakdown sometime and emergency repairs are always more expensive than scheduled maintenance. Whatever your choice of car, be aware that there are operating and maintenance costs that are part of owning a vehicle.

With today's modern engines, very little can be done by the owner, except to maybe change the oil and check/replace the air and fuel filters. Consult the owner's manual on when to change the oil. Depending on whether synthetic oil is used or not, the maintenance period will vary. Whatever the figure is, follow the manufacturer's recommendations. And don't scrimp on the oil. Oil is the lifeblood of your engine and the top oil companies do have engine oils that offer better performance and protection.

Do check you air filter regularly. This item is easy to forget because it is under a cover and a clogged filter doesn't act up immediately but rather degrades performance over time. When it is time to replace your air filter, consider buying an aftermarket reusable filter. These have the benefit of better performance and much longer life because they can be cleaned.

Also check your car's other fluids regularly, like the power steering fluid, engine oil level, coolant level and even the washer fluids. A faster than average rate of depletion can be an indicator of a developing problem which can be taken care of before it worsens.

Generally, you can worry less about your suspension until clunks or rattling indicate worn parts. A car that pulls to one side is also an indicator of upcoming suspension work that will need to be done. However, you do need to check your tire pressure and tire wear regularly. Uneven tire wear is a good indicator of the state of your suspension and its alignment. Again, consult your owner's manual on when to rotate your tires so that you prolong their life.

The other side of the equation in owning a car is the owner's driving habits. Good or bad habits can lengthen or shorten the service life of your car considerably.

One of the good habits you can form, if you don't have it yet, is to keep a steady foot on the gas pedal. Don't treat it like an on/off switch. Accelerate slowly but steadily from stops. Anticipate upcoming intersections or traffic buildups by easing off the accelerator. A side benefit of learning how to feather the throttle is improved gas mileage. Same goes for braking. Don't jam on the brakes. Instead, apply steady pressure to come to a stop. Of course, in an emergency situation, you would have to apply a lot of braking pressure but also remember to try to steer away from danger at the same time. Remember that if your brakes lock up, you will also lose steering control.

As we use our cars, we start to accumulate junk. In the trunk, the back seats, etc. Every so often, remove that accumulated debris that you don't really need from your car. The more unnecessary weight you carry, the more fuel you will use. Speaking of fuel use, an engine that is well-maintained always uses less fuel than a sloppily maintained one. With fuel prices more often on the way up, that alone is enough motivation to keep your car well maintained.

For more useful tips on automotive related topics visit our James Toyota dealership blog. We have wide selection of new Toyota cars, certified used cars and Toyota accessories.
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Thursday, December 3, 2015

Mercedes-Benz TV: The legendary SL at the Bruce Meyer Garage.

The Bruce Meyer Garage in Beverly Hills is known for the finest and best automobiles ever built. It is here that Mercedes-Benz introduces the latest generation of the legendary roadster, the Mercedes-Benz SL on the evening before the opening of the Los Angeles Auto Show.