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Preventive Maintenance

Posted by on 10/18/2013 to Info News
Here is a checklist of car odors that may be no big deal, or may require that you put down the keys, call a tow truck and let a professional handle your auto care needs. Burning coolant. You could have a blown head gasket, which causes coolant to mix with your gas. If this is the case, you may notice thick, sweet-smelling, whitish smoke coming from the tailpipe. At this point, you may need professional auto care, so see your mechanic. Exhaust. You may have a leak in your exhaust system, like a hole in your muffler, tailpipe, or exhaust manifold or exhaust pipe. Once again, it may be time for professional auto care. Hot oil. If oil is leaking, it may boil onto engine components and bake. Start by checking to see if your oil cap is loose. Fresh asphalt, burnt toast or burning rubber. This could be a sign of an overheated engine. Something is melting down, like plastic parts under the hood. You may have an electrical malfunction. If that happens, a chain reaction may result, making the engine hotter and hotter. Raw gas. Is the gas cap loose? Did you overfill the tank? If neither of these is possible, don't risk starting the engine. You may have a severed gas line or leaky fuel-injection system. You're going to need professional auto care, so your best bet is to have it towed to a technician you trust. Rotten eggs. This could indicate a plugged or damaged catalytic converter or a too-rich air/fuel mixture. Call your mechanic, since this is a sign of electrical malfunction. Of course you know there are times when you need professional auto care. As with any area of life, there are honest, trustworthy mechanics, and those who will pump up the bill by trying to scare you. Choose a shop with ASE certified mechanics (ASE stands for Automotive Service Excellence). Don't succumb to pressure. After all, it is still your car and you're in charge of your auto care. Arm yourself with a little knowledge, describe the problem as clearly as possible or take a test drive with the auto care specialist and point out the problem, and be willing to ask questions.

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