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Car Washing And Auto Repair Tips

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When you buy a vehicle, it can be very exciting. But you also will have to think about all of the maintenance and auto repair in Philadelphia, PA that is going to go into that ownership as well. If you take pride in your vehicle, you might want to wash it frequently to keep the paint looking new and the shine on the tires. But you will not want to use common dish soap for washing purposes. Yes, it does a good job, but it can break down the car’s wax and give the vehicle more of a dull look over time.

If you can’t use dish soap, what should you use? Well, car soap! It’s really that simple. Car soap has more lubricant in it, so it feels slicker between your fingers. That’s what makes it better for the surfaces of the vehicle. In addition to the special car soap, you will want a sponge or a washing mitt as well as some brushes for the tires. Get out some buckets and a microfiber towel to clean. You may also want bug remover and possibly, on occasion, wax to spray or rub on.

It’s best to wash your car in the shade if you can so it doesn’t dry before you are ready and cause water spots to staining. Keep your car wet until you are ready to dry it to combat those water spots. Oh, and don’t forget to close the windows on a nice day! You will want to avoid squirting anything under the hood. Yes, it looks dirty under there, but you don’t need that area to be squeaky clean.

What’s the best way to wash a car? Start with the wheels. The car soap can clean the rubber and that part will be very dirty. You can then get fresh soap and water once that part is clean. Rinse the car with the hose and get the debris off. Pre-treat any areas that need it, like places that have bugs splattered on it or bird droppings. Then you can soap and rinse one side of the car, moving to the next. After everything is washed, rinse one more time and dry quickly so you don’t get water spots.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Air drying is fine, but if you don’t like water spots, try a squeegee to remove most of the water before you let the air do the rest of the work. If you use a towel, don’t work in circular motions, but rather in straight lines.

There are lots of things to learn about car maintenance, even something as simple as washing the car. If you have a need for oil changes or another auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, or if you just need advice on your vehicle, you are welcome to contact the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center any time. We’re here to help you decide when you need an oil change, what soap to use when to get new tires and everything in between.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Auto Repair On Low Engine Oil

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When you buy a vehicle, you know the sticker price is not the last money you will spend on that car. Vehicles need gas at regular intervals, oil changes, and other auto repair in Philadelphia, PA over time. But most vehicles have all kinds of sensors and lights that help you to identify what is going wrong and when to take the vehicle in for repairs or maintenance. That can be very helpful if you’re not good at keeping track of things yourself, or don’t know that much about cars in the first place. But you do need to know what the lights on your car mean and what to do about them. One light you might see is the low oil pressure light.

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Your car’s engine has a lot of moving parts and they rub against each other very quickly. To prevent too much friction and damage, the oil helps to lubricate these parts. The pressure put on the oil is run by a pump and the system cools the engine to protect the metal parts. If there is not enough oil running in the system, the low oil pressure light may come on.

There are lots of things that could cause the light to pop on. First, there could be a faulty sensor. You’ll want the professionals to look at the sensor before anything else. The oil levels might be fine, but if the sensor is faulty, the light could be on for no reason at all. Getting a new sensor is much easier than other issues.

Second, there could be an oil pump malfunction. The pump may not be moving oil through the system as needed. That could be because of old age or another reason. When there are bubbles forming in the oil, that will reduce the pressure and make the system think there is not enough oil, even if there is.

Third, there could be improper grade oil in the engine. If you do not get the right oil for the make and model of your vehicle, it could break down faster and degrade, causing the oil not to be in there at the right levels.

And last, there could also be leaks in the system. You might notice that beneath your vehicle if there are oily spots on the ground where you parked. If there’s a leak, the oil you have put in is coming out and not remaining in the engine where it is needed.

Any time a light comes on in your vehicle and you aren’t sure what might be wrong, it’s best to get auto repair in Philadelphia, PA to look into the issue. Even if it’s nothing or something really small, you will have peace of mind about your vehicle’s safety and that’s important. Call the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center whenever your car needs maintenance, repairs, or a light checked out. We’re here to help you keep things effective and efficient at all times, so you are safe on the road every time you go out.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Protecting Your Car During A Pandemic

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As the world is up against a major pandemic, and you have a lot of hurdles to overcome in your life because of it, your car may not be a high priority. However, since you use your vehicle to get around for important things, you need to stay up on auto repair in Philadelphia, PA as well. To avoid allowing your vehicle to waste away due to under use in your driveway, here are a few things you should do, even if you don’t get out much.

Run The Engine Regularly

If your kids are doing school at home and you are able to work from home as well, there are fewer and fewer reasons to leave the house. But when you do need to leave, the last thing you want is for your car not to start because you haven’t used it in a while. Run the engine on your vehicle a few times a week, even if you don’t go anywhere. Leave it running for a few minutes and press on the gas pedal a few times. That will help you to keep your vehicle in good condition. Once a week, drive the car around the block as well. IT’s good for you to get out and even better for the vehicle, especially an older car.

Keep Tabs On Tire Pressure

You want your tires to stay in good shape for when you do use the vehicle again more often and that means keeping the tire pressure at the right levels. You can find out what pressure you need in the owner’s manual. If you have a newer vehicle, it might have a computerized system that tells you what the pressure is in each tire. Otherwise, you can easily check with a hand gauge yourself. If things are too low, drive to a gas station nearby, pump up the tires, then hand sanitize to stay safe.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Clean The Interior

You might not be someone who is able to shelter at home and if that is the case, who knows what you could be bringing into your car, no matter how careful you are. Clean and sanitize the interior of your car, especially the frequently touched areas like the steering wheel and gear shift. You can also air your car out with fresh air by opening the windows a crack to let the air flow through and clean things out.

There are plenty of other things you can do to keep your car safe during the pandemic. If you need auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, or some form of maintenance, call Schafer’s Auto Center and ask about our safety rules. We want vehicles, and our customers, to be as safe as possible during this unprecedented time in history. We will protect you and your vehicle in as many ways as possible. You can stay in our waiting room or, if you feel safer, get a ride home to wait for your vehicle to be completed.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Choosing The Right Tires For An Approaching Winter

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As the temperatures cool and the days get shorter, you know what’s happening…winter is coming. One thing you absolutely have to have on your vehicle, along with good auto repair in Philadelphia, PA is a good set of tires in the winter. Even if you have four-wheel drive, you have to have the tired to back that up. Follow the rules of the road and take things slowly during the winter. But even when you do that, tires are a necessary part of staying safe. Here are a few things you need to know about tires to ensure your safety this winter driving period.

All Season Tires

Not everyone wants to change their tires out when a new season hits. All season tires are the type that can be driven and give a comfortable ride any season of the year. These tires have a good tread on them and are able to grip the road in a safe manner that helps drivers maintain control in lots of different conditions.

Snow Tires

If you do a lot of driving in the winter, and you know what it can be like around here, snow tires might be a good idea for you. These tires have to be put on at the start of the season and they have more tread on them to help you get around better. If you know it’s going to be a rough winter, or you have a lot of commutes to work in store, these tires might be a good idea. They work on snow, ice, and cold roads with deeper treads that help you handle dicey road conditions better.

No matter what kind of tires you have on your vehicle, it is important to get them checked out before the winter hits. You want to make sure you have enough tread on any kind of tire and the air pressure within them is important as well. If you find that you are in need of new tires, right before winter is a good time to replace them because it gives you the benefit of brand-new tires during months that are the most perilous on the road. If your tires are relatively new, get them checked over to make sure they are in premium condition before the weather hits and the snowfalls.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

The next time you are in for auto repair in Philadelphia, PA of any kind, make it a priority to get your tires checked as well. At Schafer’s Auto Center, we understand what the snow and ice can do to the safety of drivers and we want to make sure your vehicle is in the best possible condition in every way—especially where the rubber meets the road in the tires. We will let you know when the tread is too low to keep you safe during the winter months and after we hear about your driving habits, we might recommend snow tires to keep things as safe as possible when the snow comes around.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Engine Smells That Lead To Auto Repair

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Wouldn’t it be nice if your car could retain that new car smell forever? Perhaps it used to smell like leather, new carpet, or that overall new car scent. But as the miles go by and you check in for maintenance and auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, that smell goes away and everyday life smells creep in. While you might be okay with the normal family smell, there are certain scents that can emanate from the engine that could mean you need auto repair. Here are some things to watch for…or sniff for, as the case may be.

Burning Rubber

If you smell that burned rubber scent coming from your vehicle, it probably means that somehow, rubber parts of your car are in contact with something hot and are melting. In most cases, that burning could be because of the friction between moving metal parts or a hose or belt could be slipped within the power steering system. Either way, the scent is not pleasant, and you probably need to have things checked over before you drive too much further.

Gasoline

You might smell gas a bit after you leave the gas station and that’s normal. But if you smell gas just driving down the road, it could be a leak in a pipe or something within the fuel injector or even gas tank. If the odor is strong, you need to get it checked out right away so there isn’t as much danger.

Hot Oil

You smell hot oil in the kitchen, but in your car? That’s not a good thing. Oil heats up when you are driving, but that system is enclosed so you shouldn’t smell it. That means that the leaks are likely in the oil circulation system. You should get an inspection as soon as you can because oil levels could drop and cause engine damage.

Burning Carpet

Just because you smell burning carpet doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with the interior of your vehicle. Instead, it could mean there’s an issue with a brake pad or rotor overheating. You need that fixed right away or it could be a huge hazard to your safety.

Rotten Eggs

In a house, smelling rotten eggs means a gas leak. In a vehicle, it’s generally the catalytic converter. This area converts gas into a releasing form and the smell shows you that it’s not working well. The engine might also have an issue that is taking on the converter.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Any time you smell something unusual and unpleasant in your vehicle, assuming you haven’t driven by a skunk that was hit by another car, you should take your car in for auto repair in Philadelphia, PA as soon as you can. You know the normal scents of your vehicle and none of the above are normal in the least. The professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center want to restore that new car smell or, at the very least, keep the vehicle in good condition without any scent at all.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Getting In For Auto Repair Before A Big Trip

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Are you headed out to the Midwest for the holidays? Do you want to take your car for a business trip a few hours away? It’s always best to go in for maintenance and auto repair in Philadelphia, PA before you have to take a big trip. You don’t want your timeline thrown off because you end up by the side of the road. You also don’t want to get halfway there and realize you need an oil change—badly. Take care of all of that in advance and you’ll be good to go. Here are a few reasons to go in for that auto repair before the trip occurs.

Get Better Gas Mileage

Pretty much every driver would rather get better gas mileage than worse, right? That means they pay less at the gas station every time they fill up. Having good gas mileage is better for your car and for your budget. When you take the vehicle in for auto repair, everything can be looked over and tweaked so you get the best gas mileage your vehicle can give.

A Smoother Ride

Long car trips can be tiring…especially if your vehicle doesn’t ride very well. If the steering is hard to control or the tires make the bumps even bumpier, it’s harder than ever. When you get maintenance and auto repair before you leave, your tires, wheels, shocks, brakes, steering, and everything in between can be checked over to make sure your car handles well along any road you might need to take. The trip as a whole will feel better to everyone along.

Safer Driving Options

When your brakes have just been checked, you know your vehicle is safer to drive because they are doing just fine. When you have enough tread on your tires, the same is true. There are lots of intricacies on a vehicle and when one thing goes wrong, lots can go wrong. Your vehicle will be safer to drive if everything is lined up well. Having a maintenance and auto repair check before you go on your trip will help you recognize that your vehicle is safe and ready to roll.

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There are lots of reasons to have auto repair in Philadelphia, PA and you should place an upcoming trip on that list. Before you head out, take an hour or so to get your vehicle checked out from top to bottom. Perhaps throw in an oil change and tire rotation and you will feel much better about how the trip is going to go and how well your vehicle will hold up for the duration. The professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center are here to check your vehicle out and make any recommendations we might have about what you may want to do before you go. We want you to be safe and we won’t advise that you do things unless it’s what we would do on our own vehicle if we were in your position and about to take a trip.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Good Reasons To Keep Up With Auto Repair

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When you make the investment in a vehicle, what you pay for the car is not the only thing you will invest. You will have maintenance and auto repair in Philadelphia, PA that you need to keep an eye on as well. And while there will be some things that come up out of the blue over time, many things you can predict. Here are a few reasons why it’s good to keep up with auto repair over the lifetime of your vehicle.

Keep The Warranty In Check

Your vehicle may have come with a warranty and that covers certain things. If something specific breaks and the warranty covers it, you could get parts and labor completely paid for. Your technicians are going to notice when something that is under warranty is going awry and they will point it out to you. It’s nice to use the warranty for all it’s worth while you can. If you aren’t regular about your auto maintenance, you might not know you need something until the warranty is already expired.

Save Money In The Long Run

Yes, things like oil changes and new brake pads cost money, but in the long run? Those costs are minor compared to what you would pay for a new engine or completely new brakes. Having regular auto repair on things that are bound to wear out will help you prevent larger things from wearing and costing you much more money. An oil change is nothing compared to an engine rebuild.

Prevent Larger Problems

When you pay less for something like brake pads and replace them when you need to, you prevent the brake rotors and other larger issues from ever occurring. There are generally smaller maintenance and repair things you can do, when you catch them early, that will help you to avoid larger things down the road. You save money, save hassles, and allow your vehicle to stay in better working order for the time you have with it.

Maintain Vehicle Value

While most vehicles depreciate as they age and raise in mileage, you can keep your car value as high as possible by taking good care of it. People are willing to pay more for a vehicle they know was treated right. If you stood by the manufacturer recommendations and did things are recommended, your car is a lot more likely to be in good condition when you sell in the future.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

There are plenty of other reasons to get auto repair in Philadelphia, PA as well as maintenance on a regular basis. If you don’t know a lot about cars, that’s all the more reason to take it to a technician so you are able to get what you need, when it’s needed. The professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center are here to help with any repair or maintenance need. We want you to feel comfortable with us and know that we are being honest about what we recommend for your vehicle’s repairs.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Keep Your Car Clean This Winter

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As the weather cools and you start to notice a change in the air around you, there are a lot of things guaranteed to come your way. One of those things is a car you just cannot keep clean. Not only do you shake your head at how dirty your car always looks, but the salt and sand from the roads can cause damage as well. The professionals in auto repair in Philadelphia, PA have ideas for how to protect and keep your car as clean as possible this upcoming winter season.

Store It Inside

If you have a garage, clear it out and store your car inside over the winter. You might normally park outside because your garage is full of other things, but it’s important for your vehicle’s cleanliness to get it into that garage or under a carport overnight. Plus, you don’t have to get up early to clean the windshield off. If you normally park on the street near the office, but you have the option of a covered parking garage or another such area, you might want to consider that for winter as well to keep the car in better shape.

Wax Before Winter

Wax will make your car look nice and shiny, which might make you lament winter even more, but it also protects your car for the upcoming months. The wax will act as another layer between the winter weather and the paint job on your car. It makes dirt easier to rinse off and prevents ice from sticking to the vehicle. It also helps the sand bounce off the vehicle instead of sticking and scratching.

Rinse When Possible

There’s no way to keep your vehicle spotless during the winter months—unless you leave it in the garage and never go anywhere. But when you do have a day that warms up a bit, try to rinse the dirt off the vehicle to keep it in the nicest possible condition. It’s not going to be possible every day, or even as often as you’d like, but you might get a few warm days here and there to rid your vehicle of the dirt and grim.

If you need other tips for protecting your vehicle from the dirt that inevitable comes along with the winter weather this area gets, contact professionals in auto repair in Philadelphia, PA. At

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Schafer’s Auto Center, we don’t just do oil change, maintenance, and repairs…we also give advice. We’re here to help you figure out what you should do with your vehicle to keep it in the best possible condition, inside and out. When you come in for your regular oil change, we’ll check the vehicle over to make sure everything else is in working order. At that time, you can ask whatever you want about keeping your car nice over the winter months. You can also call us any time you’d like. We’re here for you no matter what you need to ask.

auto repair in Philadelphia

Winter Weather Driving Tips

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Whether you’re from the south and new to the area or you’ve just forgotten what winter is like in the midst of the summer and fall weather, it never hurts to get winter weather driving tips. The professionals in auto repair in Philadelphia, PA want you to be as safe as possible in your vehicle. That means adhering to certain rules, taking tips to heart, and making sure your vehicle itself is safe. Here are some tips for winter weather driving to keep you, everyone in your car, and the vehicles around you safe and sound.

Tip 1: Go Slow And Steady

Any time there is even anything questionable about the weather or the roads, take them slow and steady. Sometimes, it seems like people with four-wheel drive forget that the power behind their vehicle does them no good if they hit a patch of ice. Sure, they get through snow well without their wheels spinning, but hit ice at any speed and they’re off the road, just like any other vehicle. Whenever you see anything about the road that suggests winter weather, take things slower than you normally would. Better to get to your destination safe and a few minutes later than to end up off the road or in an accident.

Tip 2: Consider Winter Tires

Depending on what the tires are like on your vehicle, you might want to switch them out for winter tires. These tires have a special tread on them that works well on the snow and ice and keeps your car safer than it would be otherwise. Since this area usually gets plenty of each, winter tires are never a bad idea to at least look into.

Tip 3: Get Your Vehicle Serviced

You need to keep a regular maintenance schedule on your vehicle for its general well-being, but that’s even more important when winter arises. If there’s anything small wrong with your car, it can be fixed before it turns into something large and leaves you stranded at the side of the road in a snow storm. Plus, you want to make sure your brakes are in proper working order because you never know when you are going to need to make use of them to avoid something dangerous in the winter. Get regular oil changes, but have your vehicle looked over from top to bottom before winter as well.

Philadelphia, PA auto repair shop

Whenever you need any kind of auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, maintenance, tire advice, or anything in between, the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center are here to help. We understand that driving in winter weather conditions can be very dangerous and we want to help you keep your car in the best possible shape to make it as safe as possible for everyone on the road. We’re here to help you with simple things, like oil changes. But we will also point out things that are close to needing work so you can plan ahead and stay safe on the roads all winter long.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Uneven Tire Tread Wear…What Causes It?

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Tires are going to wear out. That’s just the way they operate. But you want them to last as long as possible by wearing evenly. One thing you can do is make sure you get in for regular auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, and maintenance, like oil changes. Your technician can also rotate the tires and keep an eye on the tread for you during those checkups. But here are some of the causes of uneven tread wear that you can try and avoid.

Over-Inflation Of The Tires

Tires need to be kept at a certain level as much as possible. If your tires have too much air in them, they are over inflated. When that happens and is consistent, you are going to wear the center of the tires faster than the edges. You will also have a harsher, bumpier ride that could cause you to lose control in the rain or bad road conditions. Make sure you know what inflation rates are best for your tires and keep things on an even keel.

Under-Inflated Tires

When your tires don’t have enough air in them, they can wear on the edges too quickly and not in the center. Check the air pressure at least once a month in order to get the best read on how much air needs to be in the tire. If you see a tire losing air quickly, it might have a slow leak that needs to be fixed.

Improper Alignment

When new tires go on a vehicle, it has to be lined up well. Improper alignment, which can happen over time, after an accident, after a hard hit to the curb, or for other reasons, will wear the tires faster than normal. It could also damage a vehicle’s suspension. Watch for tire wear in the inner or otter portion of the tire and if you see it, get your wheel alignment inspected.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Lack Of Rotation

You should have your tires rotated every oil change, or every other oil change at the longest. It doesn’t cost much, and it doesn’t take much time. Tires can wear unevenly, causing you to need to replace one or two, but not all of them at once. They will last longer if they all wear the same, which you can accomplish with regular rotation.

When you are in need of tire advice or another auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center are here to help. Give us a call and we can help you with any of your auto repair or maintenance needs. We’re tire experts and we do oil changes and everything else that you might need to be done on a vehicle. You can stop by with questions or set up an appointment. We want your vehicle to be as safe as possible on the roads and we’re ready to help you in any way possible to make that happen. We’re here for you and your vehicle, whatever it may need next.

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