Denver Automotive Archives

Does Your Neighborhood Auto Repair Shop Do a Comprehensive Maintenance Inspection with Each Service?

[youtube:zK9Y7XigZgc?version=3;Sixth Avenue Auto;http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zK9Y7XigZgc?version=3&feature=related] Considering that auto maintenance is a routine part of car ownership, it’s important to find a mechanic who is honest, reliable and thorough. Taking a car to the auto shop for regular services such as an oil change, tire rotation and even a tune-up is necessary, but how much more valuable would the service be if the mechanic performed a comprehensive inspection of the entire vehicle? High-performance vehicles, especially, often require more attention to detail, but all cars and trucks benefit from more in-depth maintenance. The life of an automobile usually relies on regular servicing and maintenance. A periodic comprehensive inspection is a great way to know that everything is working as it should be, or get a heads up on what needs some service.

A typical auto mechanic will perform the maintenance and/or make any repairs you ask him to do. Some shops, however, routinely offer full vehicle inspections designed to uncover any and all potential problems. In effect, it is a preventative checkup of the vehicle’s many working parts. Catching small problems early could save the average auto owner substantial sums in major auto repairs. For example, a small overlooked oil leak can eventually lead to ruined valves.

While it varies from mechanic to mechanic, a comprehensive vehicle inspection typically includes a check of 100 or more points or areas of concern. Not only is a visual inspection done, but with almost all vehicles these days being computerized, a computerized check up should be included as well. A checkup is usually broken down into several primary categories:

* Performance

* Under hood

* Body

* Under body

The performance inspection covers the general functionality of the vehicle. Lights, wipers, instruments, turbo function, heating and air conditioning are all tested. How well the car stops, handles and changes gears is noted.

The under hood inspection focuses on the engine, electrical, fuel, cooling, intake and exhaust systems. All hoses should be examined for wear, leakage, and potential breakage. The battery and starting system should be tested as well. Especially during colder months, a weak battery should be replaced before the driver finds themselves stranded somewhere because the car won’t start.

The levels of oil, transmission fluid, coolant, brake fluid and power steering fluid all need to be checked, as these are all vital to the health and optimal performance of the vehicle.

The body check includes mirrors, glass, seats and seatbelts, while the under body inspection focuses on the steering, suspension, brake system and tires. The axles, exterior exhaust components and transmission should be checked, too.

Such an in-depth inspection helps a mechanic advise you on the work that should be done to the car, what can be put off for a while, and which items might be causing less than top performance. Oftentimes, these inspections are performed on pre-owned vehicles so prospective buyers know what they’re getting into.

It’s always best to have an ASE-certified Master Technician perform any vehicle inspection. There are eight certification areas, and while an ASE-certified technician is qualified in one or more of the areas, only master technicians are certified in all of them, making them the top choice for whole-vehicle inspections.

Owners of high-performance import automobiles are well advised to find a specialty mechanic. Mercedes service, for example, will differ from Audi service, so it’s important to find a skilled technician certified to work on your particular auto manufacturer.

While you’re having an inspection, or anytime you have work done on your car, it’s a good idea to ask whether the work is guaranteed and for how long, if OEM parts or generic aftermarket parts are being used, and whether this shop can handle big jobs like engine rebuilds or replacement. With good preventative maintenance and a little luck, your car may never need to have its engine switched out, but it’s helps to have a mechanic you trust ready to take care of big jobs, should they be necessary.

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If you need Denver auto maintenance Author Stephen Daniels recommends the mechanics at Sixth Avenue Auto. They specialize in working on Audis and Volkswagens, but also service domestic cars. All work at this trustworthy neighborhood shop is performed by ASE-certified technicians.

Is Your Import Car in Need of Repair – Or Just a Boost in Performance?

[youtube:zK9Y7XigZgc?version=3;Sixth Avenue Auto;http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zK9Y7XigZgc?version=3&feature=related] If you own an imported car, chances are you are a person who values peak performance, unique design, and an individual approach to life. If your vehicle is an Audi or VW, you probably want it to perform like it did when it you bought it, and the best place for keeping it serviced and equipped is your local Volkswagen or Audi service center. Just because your car isn’t brand new doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t run like it is.

The techs who are specialists in servicing imported vehicles know there is a difference in manufacturing specs for domestic versus foreign automobiles. Whatever we drive, we all know that getting replacement parts when necessary is always expensive. It stands to reason that a mechanic with established relationships with auto parts vendors is most likely to get the best prices. Many domestic shops, while very competent in dealing with domestic cars, are not as well set up to keep your import up and running at its peak performance.

Regardless of the type of car you own, or are considering buying, it’s always a good idea to look for a shop with ASE certified master technicians. These mechanics have undergone extensive training through the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, so they are very well trained in maintaining and repairing your vehicle.

To earn the ASE certified distinction, there are a series of tests they must pass:

* Engine repair and performance

* Electrical and electronic systems

* Brakes

* Heating and air conditioning

* Suspension and steering

* Manual drive train and axles

* Transmissions

ASE technicians must be recertified every five years so you can be certain that these folks are up to date on all the latest technological advances that will enhance your car’s performance.

In addition to ASE certification, the best mechanics will seek out extended education opportunities wherever they exist, and will become certified with these vendors. Companies such as Bosch, reputed to be the leading global supplier of advanced fuel injection, antilock braking and stability, starting and charging, ignition and electronic systems for European, Asian and domestic manufacturers; or Revo Technic one of the leading vendors of high performance ECU tuning software to make sure that your car is running at its full potential, will help your shop keep your car finely tuned.

Specialty shops offer other advantages as well. They will be up to date and will have the parts necessary to take care of your car. They will not only be knowledgeable about any upgrades you might be interested in; they will also have the inside scoop on things that can be very costly to you. While they clearly have a love of Audis and VWs, they will know if there is a model that consistently underperforms expectations or has common malfunctions you’d rather not deal with. Be sure to check with the mechanics at these shops for advice on which models underperform or outperform their competitors before you buy.

When you own an import car, it pays to take it to an auto repair specialist for your brand – from warranty issues to recalls – performance upgrades to replacement parts, they will care for your vehicle as if it were their own.

Reproduction permitted only if all active links are maintained and byline is preserved, and/or your byline is omitted. 2011 All Copyrights Reserved.

If you need a Denver auto repair shop Author Stephen Daniels recommends the mechanics at Sixth Avenue Auto. They specialize in working on Audis and Volkswagens, but also service domestic cars. All work at this trustworthy neighborhood shop is performed by ASE-certified technicians.