Frequently Asked Questions About Your Vehicle
Answers to Your Auto Care Questions
Below are answers to some questions often asked of us. Have a look and if you don’t see the answer you are looking for, please contact us. Or, drive into the Speedy Apollo Auto Service Centre nearest you and talk to one of our licensed service technicians. We are happy to answer your questions and offer you practical, money-saving advice on what repairs are necessary.
It’s tricky because you need to know that some characteristic brake pad materials are noisier than others, i.e. organic, semi metallic, metallic, or ceramic pad materials all have different friction coefficients, heat ranges, and sound and dust characteristics, as do drum type brake systems vs. disc type.
When the noise occurs is important: is it just when you first start up and then it goes away? Does it only happen when you apply brakes? When they are hot or cold? In reverse or forward? You can rely on your friendly neighborhood Speedy Apollo technician to give you the right answers, right away.
The vehicle manufacturer is required to indicate EPA estimated fuel mileage for your car. Rarely will you achieve their statistics. However, you can do a rough calculation by setting the trip meter on your car or keeping a log in a little book in your vehicle. Over time you will get an idea of how many miles you go between fill-ups. Also as a rule, if your vehicle is not showing its normal power, or smoke is coming out of the exhaust, or there is a strong smell of gasoline, or the engine is idling or running rough, chances are you are not getting the best gas mileage. See your Speedy Apollo technician right away. We will use our diagnostics and experience to assess where your vehicle is relatively to what it can achieve and recommend repairs to get you optimum fuel economy.
Your car can tell you when it is time to let the Speedy Apollo team do a safety analysis. If you have been keeping up with regular maintenance, problems will be caught earlier and with less cost in the long run.
It depends on how old your car is and the mileage on it. Consulting your Owner's Manual is the best way to determine the optimal level of servicing. Typically though, most vehicles require servicing every 3 months.
Test your needs and finances with this convenient online calculator which takes a number of factors into consideration when determining the relative merits of repairing vs. replacing. Even so, they cannot assess your personal taste in vehicles, your vehicle requirements, your tolerance for shopping around, personal opportunities to buy a vehicle that you know thee repair history of, etc. Trust your Speedy Apollo technician to give you a no nonsense appraisal of the relative condition of your vehicle.
Repairs to any system that is safety-related, such as steering, exhaust, emissions, brakes or suspension, should be left to your trusted Speedy Apollo technicians, not just because of the knowledge and ability we’ve derived from years of experience and special training, but because we employ the latest computer-aided diagnostics and repairs. Cars are becoming increasingly complex, and if you attempt to do a repair and damage something, or worse, expose yourself or others to peril, it will cost you much more in the long run. We have the tools, the know-how and the materials to solve your automotive problems economically and safely.
Ask your Speedy Apollo technician to help you determine what maintenance you have had done, and what will be coming due, and when. You can rely on our Speedy Apollo mechanical inspection to reveal telltale signs that a serpentine belt is cracking, a filter is clogged, brake pads are wearing unevenly, fluid is discolored or burnt, or your antifreeze coolant pH level is too high and may be doing damage to gaskets or internal cooling system components. We will help you ensure that your vehicle is giving you optimum performance and gas mileage.
Depending on the car and the type of oil, and the driving you do, different intervals are specified for oil changes. Refer to your owner’s manual for the type of oil and the recommended intervals for oil changes. Upgrading to synthetic oils can sometimes yield cost savings as they tend to last longer and lubricate better right from the start. Some manufacturers require synthetic oils. The type of oil filter also influences how long you can go between oil changes. There are many excellent websites on what oil does, when it needs changing and why.
Brake systems are engineered to take the inertial or potential energy of a moving vehicle away and so cause it to slow down or lose that energy. They do the job by converting the energy to heat energy and then dissipating it into the air. The heat is generated through friction (if you want to see how it works rub your hands together quickly when they are dry and you will instantly feel the skin warm up).
Brake systems are a complex balancing act. Engineers had to create a brake system that would last a long time and work through a broad heat range. The system had to work reliably whether you’re just starting for the first time in the morning, when you are in stop-and-go traffic on the Deerfoot, when you are on the highway and have to stop suddenly from a high speed, and must work in reverse or going forward. The engineers had to design a system that would be light, since extra weight reduces gas mileage. However, the system also had to be stable, so they used heavy cast iron components and components that can take heat. Brake fluid and mechanical leverage are used to translate the force from your leg working on the brake pedal to heat energy from the car, which is lost in the air around the rotor or drum being heated.
If you’re hearing noise from your brakes, take note of the conditions when noise occurs. Then, let your Speedy Apollo Auto Service Centres technician diagnose the noise – sometimes it’s simply the materials used in the elements of your braking system. Other times, the noise indicates trouble – be assured that we will recommend only necessary repairs and that you can rely on our experience and skill in completing those repairs.
Vehicle type, usage, mileage, and component breakdown are the most common reasons. Or you may want your Speedy Apollo technician to upgrade your suspension for more demanding road or driving conditions. The Monroe Shocks & Struts
Trust your Speedy Apollo technician to give you the straight goods on ride height, tire wear, excessive movement from joints, weak or leaking shocks or McPherson struts.
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