Despite the current difficulties regarding the Covid-19 pandemic as well as the worldwide shortage of microchips that has ground the production of certain makes and models to a halt, the demand for new cars is still incredibly high. For instance, a census reports that the average American driver owns nearly two cars and that despite an increased focus on providing mass transportation in major cities, Americans are increasing the amount of time they spend in their vehicles each week. In fact, that number is going up by dozens of percent each year. At the time of the most recent study in 2019, Americans were spending nearly 11 hours a week behind the wheel.
With all that driving, car repairs are going to have an ever-increasing position of importance going forward. Recent studies have shown that there are over six million car accidents a year in the United States—that’s nearly 16,500 accidents per day. And with over 90 of those accidents turning fatal each day, making sure the car is performing optimally is more important than ever.
Knowing It’s Time For A Tune-Up
Our South Ogden Tunex professionals suggest bringing your vehicle in for car repairs at least once a year; think of it as a sort of yearly physical for the car. Of course, you may deem that the car needs help within that timeframe if it starts manifesting abnormal behavior like grinding resistance or general unresponsiveness. However, in addition to your sense of touch, your senses of hearing and smell will tip you off that it may be time for our auto care technicians to see you; any strange smell or sound could be a symptom of a much larger problem. Below is a list of some of the most frequent culprits that lead people to bring their car to Tunex.
You Hear Abnormal Sounds
We all know what a car sounds like when it’s running perfectly; the hum of the motor, the silence of the brakes, the revving of the engine as you accelerate, and the shift of the transmission as your car prepares to send more power to the wheels. However, there is a bevy of bad sounds that can come from your car when something is out of alignment or threatening to break. These include:
- Squealing: This could be an indicator that the brake pads have worn down and the clamps are putting undue pressure on the brake cylinders. Squealing is also a sign that one of your belts—perhaps from the power steering or the timing belt—is beginning to slip. Generally, these are all easy fixes.
- Rattling: If, as you drive, you begin to hear the sound of something rattling, like quarters in a tin can, then it is likely a sign that something is loose. There are plenty of bolts and plugs in the car and if any one of them has started bouncing around the engine area, it needs to be checked at our Ogden car repair center.
- Hissing: A hissing sound generally indicates that fluid of some kind is hitting your hot engine. As there are numerous types of fluids that pass under the hood as you drive, from the engine coolant to power steering to windshield wiper fluid, a hissing could mean any one of them has sprung a leak.
- Popping: Popping sounds usually accompany a problem with the car’s exhaust system. Despite advancements in catalytic converter technology, those components tend to wear out faster than other parts of the vehicle. If you hear a prolonged popping noise when turning off the engine or a backfire from the tailpipe when starting up the car, then you likely have a fuel or exhaust system issue. The professionals at our Ogden car repair shop would be happy to help.
Your Car Puts Off An Abnormal Smell
With all the parts that are in operation at any given moment in a car, it is not surprising that a car would give off a number of smells if something was wrong. Despite the normal smell of exhaust leaving the tailpipe, you might pick up hints of something sweet, burning, or sulfuric coming from under the car that is not natural. Whatever the issue, our South Ogden Tunex can expedite your car’s recovery. Let’s identify some smells to be aware of.
- Burning: Perhaps the most common uncommon smell for the car, a burning odor likely suggests that oil or some other of the car’s fluids are running out and the car’s engine is beginning to overheat or produce unwanted friction between some of its internal parts. A burning smell may also indicate that there is a problem with the brakes, as the brake pads are wearing down or you left the emergency brake on while driving.
- Sweet: If you smell something sweet while the car is running, it could be that coolant is leaking from the radiator. When the glycolic substance that makes up antifreeze hits the overheating engine, you will sense a sweet smell emanating from the heater.
- Sulfur: Another indication that the catalytic converter may be on the fritz, a sulfur (or rotten egg) smell may mean that certain elements in the exhaust like hydrogen sulfide are not being properly processed.
Strong smells or abnormal sounds coming from your car are a warning indicator that your vehicle needs maintenance. Our South Ogden Tunex is ready to help you get all of your car repairs done quickly and easily, with top-of-the-line customer service. Come in and set an appointment today.