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Archive for August 2021

Keeping Your Car Young in Franklin

Posted August 29, 2021 9:32 AM



As Franklin consumers, we live in a disposable society. It's amazing all the stuff we throw away.

New stuff comes out so fast in MI, and much of it is fairly cheap, so we just toss the old and move on. It seems like when we were kids our parents were real sticklers about taking care of our stuff - especially parents who grew up in the Depression. You know, hang up your clothes, polish your shoes, put away your toys. If something got lost or ruined by neglect, tough; we had to do without. 

We couldn't afford new cars very often, so we tried to make them last as long as we could. It's a good thing that cars are more reliable these days. They just don't break down as often. And the good news for us Franklin penny pinchers is that a modern car can easily go 200,000 miles (320,000 km) with proper care. The engineering's there and so is the manufacturing quality. The missing ingredient is us making sure we follow the vehicle manufacturer's maintenance schedules.

Is it really that bad for Franklin motorists to get off schedule? Well, it all adds up. Every time you go a little longer than the recommended interval  between oil changes, you've created an opportunity for  sludge to form and clog passages. Then some parts don't get oiled and they start to wear out faster. 

Skip a cooling system service, and the corrosion inhibitors become depleted; the radiator starts being damaged, one step closer to a failure. The same thing is true for transmission service, power brakes, fuel system cleaning – really everything on your schedule.

It's also even more important for older vehicles in the Franklin area. Those engines and other systems have had more time to get dirty, so they're working harder anyway. But it's never too late for Franklin drivers to get back on track with maintenance and to hold off further damage.

It's just another example of our parents knowing what's best. (Surprising how often that happens.) And it really does start with the oil change, just like Dad said. When you get a full service oil change they top off all your fluids and check for other items that are on your maintenance schedule. That's like your safety net; go in for oil changes on time, and let the pros at Franklin Auto Service in Franklin help you keep track of the rest.

Of course, it is inevitable for vehicles that some things are going to wear out along the way, like alternators, water pumps and such; they don't last forever. But that stuff is cheaper than a new car payment. And taking care of problems early means they have less time to cause other problems. It's like having high cholesterol; you don't want to wait for a heart attack before you address it.

Franklin Auto Service
32725 Franklin Rd
Franklin, MI 48025
248-626-2080
http://www.franklinautoservice.net


 



Franklin Auto Service Automotive Tips: Alternator

Posted August 22, 2021 9:32 AM

Your alternator makes electricity to start and run your engine and all of the vital electrical systems in your vehicle. That’s everything from the on-board computers to the turn signals. And of course there is the entertainment system, seat heaters, power windows and everything you plug into the power outlets. After your alternator makes enough electricity to do all that, it recharges your battery with what’s left over.

When Franklin drivers constantly have a low or dead battery, the alternator is usually a prime suspect. However, the alternator is just one vital component of the starting/charging system, and a problem with any of the other components could be the actual cause.

In addition to the alternator, the charging/starting system includes the battery, starter, serpentine belt system and all of the electrical cables that connect them. Your Franklin Auto Service service advisor has a systematic process of testing components and connections to get to the source of your trouble. The initial symptoms determine where to begin the diagnostic process, and he follows the procedure until he tracks down the culprit.

For example, diagnostic tests at Franklin Auto Service could reveal that the alternator is not generating enough electricity to keep the battery charged. Is the alternator bad? Not necessarily. A worn serpentine belt tensioner could be allowing the belt that spins the alternator to slip. So the perfectly good alternator is not spinning at the proper speed. The solution for Franklin drivers is to replace the serpentine belt system – not the alternator.

The good news for Franklin drivers is that our highly-trained technicians at Franklin Auto Service can properly diagnose all your vehicle troubles and make the necessary repairs to get you back on the road in Franklin.

Give us a call.

Franklin Auto Service
32725 Franklin Rd
Franklin, MI 48025
248-626-2080
http://www.franklinautoservice.net





Fuel Saving Tip: Alignment for Your Franklin Vehicle

Posted August 15, 2021 7:55 AM



Imagine you've left Franklin and you're up in the arctic on a dog sled.

Your dog team is pulling straight and true. You can cover a lot of ground quickly. Now imagine what would happen if one or two of the dogs wanted to go their own way and were pulling off to the side.

That would slow you down. You would have to work harder to keep the sled going where you want it. The dogs are all working as hard as before, but you're covering less ground for the same effort.

You're wasting kibble.

The same is true of your vehicle when the wheels are out of alignment. That wheel that's pulling to the side is dragging down the rest of the vehicle; so you push a little harder on the gas pedal to keep up your speed. You're wasting gas.

So have your wheel alignment checked at least once a year. It is important to get it checked right away if you feel the vehicle pulling to one side.

Sometimes we Franklin residents bump a curb or hit a pothole and knock our wheels out of alignment. An accident can take the wheels out of alignment as well.

Franklin residents need to make sure they're tracking straight. You'll get better fuel economy and your tires'll last longer. Now, mush!

Franklin Auto Service
32725 Franklin Rd
Franklin, MI 48025
248-626-2080
http://www.franklinautoservice.net



See the Light (Automatic High Beam Dimmers)

Posted August 8, 2021 8:38 AM

It's happened to all of us.  We're driving down a highway at night and over a crest appears a car with its high beams blazing.  You are momentarily blinded, hoping the other driver will switch them to their low beam setting and restore your vision.

Not only do we not appreciate being blinded, face it; we don’t want to be that other driver, either.  You know, the one who forgets to turn down their high beams.

Why do we want high beams in the first place? They can improve safety when used correctly, giving drivers more reaction time since they can see farther down the road.  But research has found many drivers either don't use them or, when they do, they frequently forget to switch to low beams.  Enter the automatic high-beam dimmer.

The quest for the perfect one began back in the 1950s, General Motors invented something it called the "Autronic Eye." It was a phototube which sat on the dashboard and turned down your beams when it saw other headlights.  While touted as being the biggest advance in night driving safety in 30 years, it didn't work all that well.  But as technology got more advanced, systems improved.

Today's automatic high beam dimmers usually have a camera in the rear view mirror (pointing forward).  When the camera sees lights, software in the system's computer attempts to determine the source of the light, whether it is an oncoming vehicle, taillights, ambient city lights, street lights or the reflection off of a street sign.  It then adjusts the headlights to operate high beams if appropriate or a less-blinding mode if they’re not.

Some automakers are striving to make their headlight systems smarter and safer by developing lamps that can avoid blinding oncoming drivers by means other than simply dimming them. One idea? Splitting the beams so they will block just the portion that shines into the eyes of oncoming drivers.

It's a long way from the Autronic Eye. 

Franklin Auto Service
32725 Franklin Rd
Franklin, MI 48025
248-626-2080
http://www.franklinautoservice.net



Arrive Alive in Franklin

Posted August 1, 2021 8:23 AM

We've all seen drivers do crazy things while driving to or from Franklin. A guy shaving in the rear-view mirror, a woman applying makeup, people talking on their phones, texting or drinking from an enormous coffee mug. It's a wonder we even dare drive on MI roads.

The truth is that all of us are distracted when we drive. Unfortunately, traffic, road construction and other external factors are beyond our control. The distractions inside our car, however, are things we can often control.

Here's some things that'll give you more control in your car, and help keep your attention on the roads around Franklin.

  • Franklin drivers who are 16 to 20 years old tend to be more distracted by the radio, CD or MP3 player.
  • Franklin drivers who are 20 to 29 are more distracted by passengers in the car, including small children.
  • Those over age 65 tend to be more distracted by objects or events that are outside of the vehicle.

Other factors like fatigue, stress and lack of sleep make it harder to pay attention to driving – no matter what age we are. It is always better to pull over and take a quick nap than risk falling asleep at the wheel. Franklin drivers are also distracted by thinking about relationships, family issues, money and bills. So what can Franklin drivers do to manage these distractions? Well, the first thing is to eliminate as many as we can.

If you really think you have to shave, change your clothes or put on make-up while driving in Franklin – you're wrong. Just start getting ready earlier so you have enough time to finish those things before you drive around Franklin.

The professional here at Franklin Auto Service wand you to remember that driving is probably the most dangerous thing you'll do all day – so don't make it any worse. Use these tips to keep you and your loved ones safer behind the wheel in Franklin.

Franklin Auto Service
32725 Franklin Rd
Franklin, MI 48025
248-626-2080
http://www.franklinautoservice.net



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