Articles:

Budget for Maintenance in CHICAGO

Sometimes busy CHICAGO residents dream about going back to the “simpler” days of our grandparents. But if you could travel back in time and take a road trip around Illinois in a Model T, you might change your mind. The improved designs and quality of today's automobiles have significantly reduced the amount of time CHICAGO residents spend at the side of the road during breakdowns. With proper maintenance, today's vehicles can stay on the road longer than ever before.Some of those improvements, however, have led to higher repair costs. For example, older cars often broke down from vapor lock. Gas vaporized while traveling from the gas tank to the fuel pump. No gas, no power. The car quits going. The solution was simple — you just sat by the road until the car would start up again. Today's CHICAGO drivers would hardly tolerate that kind of inconvenience, and it's likely that yesterday's CHICAGO drivers didn't care much for it, either. So on today's vehicles, the fu ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance

Fuel Saving Tip: Car Weight and Your Illinois Driving

Fuel Saving Tip: Car Weight and Your Illinois Driving

Weight is the enemy of fuel economy. Everyone from CHICAGO knows this makes sense.Some of us in the CHICAGO area carry a bunch of unnecessary weight, and I'm not talkin' what you see in the mirror.Guys: sports equipment and tools. Ladies: well, just take a look around the passenger compartment and trunk. I think my car has about 45 pounds of french fries on the floor.All that extra weight wastes gas as you drive between here and there, and everywhere else.Lose the junk and save some money....And you really only need one of those spare tires. Thom's Four Wheel Drive 4118 N PULASKI RD CHICAGO, Illinois 60641 7735775701 http://thomsfourwheeldrive.com

Categories:

Fuel System

It Is Time to Check Your Intervals

It Is Time to Check Your Intervals

Part of the engineering that goes into designing a vehicle is testing the components to ensure that they meet durability and safety standards. Because of this, manufacturers have a good idea as to how long the parts in your vehicle will last under normal driving conditions. For this reason, they give us guidelines to follow regarding how often to inspect the various parts and systems on our vehicles.Vehicular components are required to meet certain standards. The government mandates some of these standards. Others are set by the auto industry. Recommended car maintenance schedules are designed to help CHICAGO vehicle owners maintain these standards. Disregarding routine maintenance or procrastinating preventive maintenance will result in lowered performance and reduced safety for a vehicle.Maintenance schedules are designed to ensure three areas of automotive performance for CHICAGO drivers: protection of the vehicle itself, efficiency and safety. Protection ... read more

Categories:

Inspection

Clean Fuel ? Clean Performance for CHICAGO Drivers

Clean Fuel ? Clean Performance for CHICAGO Drivers

Fuel filters clean the dirt, dust and debris out of your fuel. Both gasoline and diesel-powered engines have them. The fuel filter is located in the fuel line between the fuel tank and the vehicle engine.CHICAGO auto owners don't need to filter their fuel because it has lots of grit in it; they need to filter it because it has some grit it in. Any dirt is bad for your engine. The cleaner the fuel, the better your vehicle engine will run.Over time, the small amounts of rust, dirt and contaminants in your fuel settle out inside the fuel tank. After about five years, this can amount to a quite a bit of sediment. This means that as your vehicle ages, your fuel filter has to work harder to screen your fuel: more sediment in your tank means more potential for grit in your fuel.The harder your fuel filter works, the more often it needs to be replaced. Check with your owner's manual to find out how often it should be serviced and how long you can expect it to last. CHICAG ... read more

Categories:

Fuel System

Good Timing: Proper Timing Belt Replacement Saves Money for CHICAGO Drivers

Good Timing: Proper Timing Belt Replacement Saves Money for CHICAGO Drivers

Knowing how their engine works can help CHICAGO drivers make informed decisions about auto care and prevent repairs to their vehicles. This is especially true when it comes to timing belts.An engine's power is generated in the cylinders. Inside the cylinder is a piston that moves up and down while the engine is running. Power is generated in a cycle that includes four strokes of the piston. First, the piston drops and a valve at the top of the cylinder opens to let in fuel and air. The piston then rises, which compresses the fuel and air. At this point, the spark plug fires, igniting the fuel and pushing the piston down. This downstroke transfers energy to the engine, which provides the power it needs to run. The piston rises again, and a valve opens to release the exhaust.All of this movement is orchestrated by a timing belt. The timing belt is so named because it keeps the pistons and valves operating in synch with each other, just as a conductor keeps all of th ... read more

Categories:

Timing Belt

Good Service at Thom's Four Wheel Drive Equals Good Fuel Economy in CHICAGO

Whether we're trying to save money, save gas or save the environment, most of us CHICAGO drivers have an interest in decreasing fuel consumption. We've all heard about ways to save money on gas in Illinois, but does it really add up to much? How much can we boost our fuel economy through preventive maintenance and more courteous driving?The US government has a website that actually answers that question. Let's look at some of the data and find out if any of these fuel-saving ideas are really worth the effort. We've all heard that a tune-up can improve gas mileage. It turns out that it can save us 4% at the pump. At $3.50 a gallon, that's 14¢ per gallon in savings, and at $4.00 a gallon, that's a 16¢ per gallon savings.Other common repair items can also save you at the pump. For example, if your oxygen sensor is faulty, it's not delivering the information to your engine's computer that allows it to calculate the right fuel-to-air ratio. The result? T ... read more

Categories:

Fuel Economy

Make your Service Visit at Thom's Four Wheel Drive a Good One

Most people don't love going to get their vehicle serviced, but it's one of those things you just have to do. So you might as well get the most of out of it. There are some steps you can take that will likely help you get the best results possible. For one thing, it's important to describe your problem (or problems) to the service advisor accurately and clearly. If your vehicle is making a noise, for example, take time to really listen to it and think of the best way to describe it. Does it increase in speed when you go faster? If you feel a vibration somewhere, where in the vehicle does it seem to originate? Some service advisors recommend writing things down. That way the driver won't forget any important clues that could lead to a successful resolution of the problem. Another thing is to make sure your vehicle is cleaned out and free of junk. That way the technician can access those nooks and crannies where some vital components may be. If your vehicle is full of strollers, boxes or ... read more

Keeping Your CHICAGO Air Fresh When Driving With a Clean Cabin Air Filter

Keeping Your CHICAGO Air Fresh When Driving With a Clean Cabin Air Filter

Pop quiz: What is a cabin air filter? A. A filter for your CHICAGO house?B. A fresh, piney scent?C. A filter for the passenger compartment of your car? Clever you, it's C.A cabin air filter cleans the outside air before it comes into the passenger compartment of your vehicle. It filters out common Illinois air particles like dust, pollen, spores, bacteria, pollutants, exhaust gas, odors and even sparrows.These high tech filters can block particles larger than 3 microns. By contrast, a grain of sand is about 200 microns.Not all CHICAGO vehicles have cabin air filters. They are fairly new on the scene in Illinois. Last check, about 40 percent of new vehicles sold in CHICAGO come with cabin air filters, but the number is growing every year. Cabin air filters make driving a lot more pleasant for people in CHICAGO. Your vehicle can be a haven during our Illinois allergy season with very little dust and pollen getting into the cabin. Of course, like all filters, the cabin air filte ... read more

Categories:

Cabin Air Filter

What Is That? Check Engine Light Service at Thom's Four Wheel Drive

What Is That? Check Engine Light Service at Thom's Four Wheel Drive

Okay. You went to your local CHICAGO car wash, and while your vehicle was under the dryer, the Check Engine light started flashing. Panic! What did you just do? Something is seriously wrong with the vehicle! You head for the nearest CHICAGO service center, but on the way, the Check Engine light stops flashing and just glows red. Hmm. Maybe things aren't as bad as they seem. You decide to wait until payday to take your vehicle in to get serviced. In the meantime, the Check Engine light goes off. What? You decide the light must be faulty; maybe when it comes on it doesn't mean anything, or maybe it's just in your vehicle as some sort of scam to get you to pay for unnecessary repairs. You're glad you didn't take your car to the CHICAGO repair shop and resolve to ignore that Check Engine light in the future.Whoa! Let's look at what really happened. Your vehicle was under an air dryer. Your air intake sensor measured too much air running through the engine. It sent its report ... read more

Categories:

Diagnostics

How to Know When to Change Your Oil at Thom's Four Wheel Drive

How to Know When to Change Your Oil at Thom's Four Wheel Drive

Today in the Thom's Four Wheel Drive auto care blog, we're going to talk to CHICAGO drivers about oil change intervals. It seems that as engine technology advances, oil change intervals become longer for Thom's Four Wheel Drive customers. For example, recently four of the world's largest vehicle manufacturer's shortened the published intervals for several of their engine models. They originally published intervals that extended out to a much as 8,000 miles (13,000 kilometers).In real world CHICAGO driving, the oil started to sludge up before the recommended change interval. Oil sludge is a thick jelly-like substance: quite literally petroleum jelly – like Vaseline. This goop was clogging vehicle small engine passages so the oil wouldn't flow to some parts of the engine. This resulted in engine damage. We see it too often at Thom's Four Wheel Drive in CHICAGO.The vehicle manufacturers began to offer an extended warranty to cover sludge damage. But there was a catc ... read more

Categories:

Fluids
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