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Automotive Tips from Thom's Four Wheel Drive: When to Replace a Damaged Tire

Repair or Replace? That’s a question CHICAGO drivers ask when they have tire damage. Some punctures cannot be repaired because of their size or location. Punctures larger than a quarter of an inch (6.4 mm) are considered too large to be safely repaired. Punctures in the sidewall or near the shoulders may not be able to be repaired. And sometimes there is internal damage revealed on inspection that indicates the tire should not be repaired. Run flat tires should not be repaired. Repairing high performance tires may make them unsuitable for motorsports. Your friendly and professional Thom's Four Wheel Drive service advisor can inspect your damaged tire and tell you if it can be safely repaired or if it should be replaced - and then help you get back on the roads around CHICAGO.Give us a call.Thom's Four Wheel Drive4118 N PULASKI RDCHICAGO, Illinois 606417735775701http://thomsfourwheeldrive.com ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

CHICAGO Drivers: Get Fresh Air Inside Your Car

Let's talk about air quality in CHICAGO. It's a global issue, but affects us wherever we are. Many decades ago, CHICAGO drivers began to become aware of how air pollution negatively affects health. But what about the air inside your vehicle?Now, it's only been in the last few years that cabin air filters have become common in CHICAGO. You can look in your owner's manual to see if you have one. If you do, there'll be a recommendation for replacing it when it gets dirty. If you live in an area of Illinois where there's a lot of dust, pollen or pollution, you may need to change it more often.You can also ask your friendly and knowledgeable service advisor at Thom's Four Wheel Drive in CHICAGO. How hard is it to change an air filter on a car? It depends on your vehicle. Some are quite accessible; others take some doing to get to them. They're usually in the engine compartment or under the dashboard.Because cabin air filters are so new on the scene, some people haven't ... read more

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Cabin Air Filter

Need a New Battery? Call Thom's Four Wheel Drive Today

Need a New Battery? Call Thom's Four Wheel Drive Today

Hello CHICAGO drivers! Need a new battery? There is a good chance that you do – 70% of batteries need to be replaced within four years. As your battery discharges and then recharges as you drive around CHICAGO, bits of the surface of the battery plates disintegrate. As this process continues over a few years, the alternator has to work harder to supplement the battery charge. Over time, enough of the battery is damaged that it can no longer hold a charge and it needs to be replaced. This also speeds up wear on the alternator.Your Thom's Four Wheel Drive service advisor can help you determine the right vehicle replacement battery for the way you drive around CHICAGO, as well as the Illinois climate and durability needs.Contact Thom's Four Wheel Drive for information on battery replacement.Give us a call. Thom's Four Wheel Drive 4118 N PULASKI RD CHICAGO, Illinois 60641 7735775701 http://thom ... read more

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Battery

Custom Wheels and Tires for Your CHICAGO Ride

Custom Wheels and Tires for Your CHICAGO Ride

  It seems like everywhere you go in the CHICAGO area you see custom wheels. Big trucks, little cars, mini-vans - it doesn't matter - are expressing themselves with custom wheels. Some Illinois auto owners want smaller tires and wheels - some want larger - and some want them enormous. So where do you start if you want new wheels? At Thom's Four Wheel Drive, we suggest you start with your budget. We know, that sounds so practical. But if the look you're after goes beyond just new tires and wheels and enters into the world of suspension modifications, you need to be prepared for the additional cost.Let's start with something easy - you want to give your ride a unique look and the stock wheel size is just right for you. One of the concerns you will have is that the new wheels have the same offset as your vehicle factory wheels.Your tire and wheel professional at Thom's Four Wheel Drive in CHICAGO can help you find the right size wheel or install adapters to make your new wh ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Coolant/Antifreeze Service in CHICAGO, Illinois

Coolant/Antifreeze Service in CHICAGO, Illinois

CHICAGO auto owners may know that most automotive failures in CHICAGO, Illinois, are tire related, but do you know the second most common cause of vehicle failure? Nope, it's not teenagers. It is the coolant system. But if you take good care of your vehicle coolant system, it will take good care of you.A vehicle's engine creates a lot of heat - so much heat, that if it is not properly cooled, the engine can lock up, resulting in massive damage and repair bills. But when everything is working right, your vehicle engine operates at the proper temperature and all is well. Without antifreeze in your cooling system, the water could freeze and cause vehicle engine damage. This could be very expensive, not to mention inconvenient.The right mix of water and antifreeze protects the engine against damage from freezing and overheating. Antifreeze also protects the coolant system against corrosion that could cause the system to fail. The thing to remember is this: coolant system failure is ve ... read more

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Cooling System

Thom's Four Wheel Drive Radiator Service

Thom's Four Wheel Drive Radiator Service

The coolant system is a vital part of your vehicle. It is also the second most common cause for vehicle failures. Even though coolant system failure is fairly common in CHICAGO, it is easy to prevent. The most recognizable part of the coolant system is the radiator. It is connected to the engine with hoses and is filled with coolant. The coolant draws heat off the engine and then passes into the radiator. Air passes through cooling fins to reduce the temperature of the coolant and then it's back to the engine again.There are several ways for the cooling system to fail. Most common is with the coolant itself. Coolant is comprised of water and antifreeze. The proper ratio keeps the coolant from either boiling away or freezing. Understandably, either can lead to massive engine damage.Another coolant issue that is often overlooked by CHICAGO drivers is the age of the coolant itself. Antifreeze has additives that protect the coolant system from corrosion. As these additives ... read more

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Cooling System

Change Your Wiper Blades Twice Yearly at Thom's Four Wheel Drive

Because 90% of our driving decisions are based on visual information, unobscured vision is paramount. Which brings us to the topic of today's Thom's Four Wheel Drive article: wiper blades. While this isn't the most exciting automotive subject, it's important. You wouldn't drive at night in CHICAGO with your headlights off, but a dirty or streaked vehicle windshield can catch the glare of the sun or on-coming headlights and make it just as difficult to see.Most of us in CHICAGO replace our wiper blades when they no longer do the job. They are so worn, hard or brittle that they can't clean the windshield. They may even be falling apart. In other words, we deal with our wiper blades from a failure perspective. We address them when they no longer function. The theory, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it," doesn't apply here. Instead, we should think about wipers blades as an important safety system that we should maintain rather than re ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance

Get Where You're Going with Power Steering Service in CHICAGO

Get Where You're Going with Power Steering Service in CHICAGO

Today we're going to talk about power steering service in CHICAGO. If you took an informal poll around CHICAGO you'd probably find that most vehicle owners have never heard of power steering service. That's not surprising. Even though power steering is standard on every vehicle, most people in CHICAGO aren't aware that it needs periodic service.If you're younger than a certain age, you've probably never driven a vehicle without power steering. To get an idea of the difference; if you've ever cut a board with a hand saw, you know it's a lot of work. Using a power saw is easy-peasy by comparison.Without power steering, your arms have to do all the work to steer the wheels, and that's hard, especially around downtown CHICAGO. That's why old cars had such big steering wheels: to get enough leverage to steer.Most vehicles in CHICAGO have a hydraulic power steering system. The serpentine belt from the engine powers a pump. The pump pressurizes the power steering fluid. This actuates a h ... read more

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Steering

Thom's Four Wheel Drive: Why Replace Your Engine Air Filter?

Thom's Four Wheel Drive: Why Replace Your Engine Air Filter?

Just as our bodies need clean air to function properly, your vehicle engine needs clean air to operate efficiently. Let's go egghead for a minute. For every gallon of gas we burn driving on CHICAGO streets, 20 pounds of carbon dioxide comes out the tailpipe. Question: how can a gallon of gas that weighs a little over six pounds produce 20 pounds of carbon dioxide?The answer is that the carbon comes from the gasoline, but the oxygen comes from the air. You see, it takes about 12,000 gallons of air to burn a gallon of gas in your engine. Clearly, your vehicle needs a lot of air to keep going in CHICAGO. A lot of clean air is best. You've seen the pictures of people in Japan wearing face masks. They want some kind of filter to keep unwanted pollution and germs out of their lungs. Well, your vehicle also works better when its internals are clean. When your vehicle air filter is dirty ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance

Battery Basics for CHICAGO

Battery Basics for CHICAGO

It's important for CHICAGO drivers to know battery basics. First, let's talk about which is harder on a battery – hot or cold Illinois weather. Most CHICAGO area drivers think it's cold weather because that's when we call on our batteries to have enough power to start a cold vehicle engine. However, heat does more damage to a battery than cold. Truth is, our batteries start to die a little from day one. Keeping a full charge slows the process, which is hard with short CHICAGO trips because the alternator doesn't have time to fully recharge the battery from starting the engine. CHICAGO drivers can top off the charge with a computer controlled battery charger – say, once a month in the summer and every three months during the winter.As far as how long a battery will last, statistics show that 70% have given up the ghost within four years. By that time, they aren't capable of taking a full charge like they used to, an ... read more

Categories:

Battery
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