It's rare that a car's engine suddenly stops working altogether. Usually, there are warning signs to indicate engine trouble is on its way. But what are the signs?   If your check engine light is illuminated, it's best to take it in for diagnostic testing, which can feel like a hassle. Because while the lights vary in appearance from vehicle to vehicle, all have the same basic meaning: There's a problem with the car's emissions system. The onboard diagnostics system and engine control unit are in charge of monitoring a bunch of different parameters, and if they get a reading that's a little out of whack, up pops the check engine light.


Your vehicle’s manufacturer provides a schedule of recommended service procedures based on a number of miles driven. The service schedule is designed to help car owners to get the optimum performance, longevity, and reliability from their vehicles. The service schedule typically covers the project lifespan of the vehicle and covers a wide variety of components and systems.




It all starts with a few telltale problems: A dash light coming on for a brief moment, maybe dimmed headlights and a few flickering gauges. Perhaps there's even an odd smell, or a growling sound coming from under the hood. Is this a case of automotive possession? No. Most likely it's one of many possible alternator problems, and without a little attention, this problem can cause car trouble ranging from slow starts all the way up to a dead car.  While an alternator is a relatively simple component containing only a few parts, it plays a critical role in any vehicle's operation. Essentially it turns the mechanical energy of the engine's rotating crankshaft into electricity through induction.


Wires within the alternator cut through a magnetic field; this, in turn, induces the electrical current. That current is used to power your car's accessories, which can be anything from headlights to the electro-hydraulic lifts on a snow plow. The alternator also keeps the battery fully charged, providing the power it needs to start the car.



The lights you'll probably want to pay the most attention to are:

  • Check Oil/Oil Level Low

  • Oil Pressure Low

  • Check Engine


The "Check Engine" lamp is perhaps the most troubling of lights because it could mean so many different things, from "you didn't screw the gas cap on tightly enough" to "look out for pistons flying through the hood and into the stratosphere." The easiest way to find out what this light is telling you is to hook your vehicle up to a scan tool. This diagnostic tool looks a little like an oversized calculator and plugs into a communication port inside the car. After you instruct it to perform the scan, it "speaks" with your car's computers to find out exactly what's prompting the light to turn on.




The clutch is one of the most vital parts of your car. When it finally stops working properly, though, it makes the car difficult or impossible to drive!  Performance cars, exotic cars, and European cars are more expensive to replace the clutch than Japanese economy cars. Four wheel drive vehicles cost more than two wheel drive vehicles. Regardless of these varying factors, a correctly done clutch job should include the following:

  • Replacement of the clutch disk

  • Release bearing pilot bearing

  • Resurfacing or replacement of the flywheel



Brakes are an essential component in every vehicle. Properly maintaining and repairing your car's brakes and brake systems not only ensures that you can safely stop your vehicle, it can also help you avoid more costly damage and subsequent repairs.


Your brake pads will generally let you know they need to be replaced. When the pads wear down, it causes a squealing sound when you brake.


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