auto repair Philadelphia

The Little Auto Repairs That Matter

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You’ve probably heard people say that it’s the little things that matter. And when it comes to auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, that can really be true. Your vehicle will operate better if you take care of the little things. Those little things can help prevent bigger issues that can occur when you ignore the littler items. Here are a few little auto repairs that really matter in the long haul.

Wiper Blade Replacement

While old wiper blades aren’t going to have an impact on the engine or really any other important part of the vehicle, they are highly valuable to the driver. When you drive in Pennsylvania weather, you never know if you are going to see sun and then rain or snow and then sleet. The wiper blades are the only thing between you, the windshield, and your line of sight. The rubber on those blades can wear down and even dry out in the summer heat. Replace them at a regular interval, like before the bad weather seasons, so you can ensure you aren’t stuck driving in the rain with low visibility.

Oil Changes

Everyone knows that oil changes are essential to the inner workings of a vehicle, but not everyone knows why. The oil change takes old oil out of the engine and replaces it with new oil. If you leave old oil in too long, it can dry up or clog up the engine and those parts won’t operate correctly any longer. It can lead to an overheating engine, or worse. Something as small as an oil change every 5,000 miles or so can keep your car operating well.

Worn Belt Replacement

Belts aren’t things cars have to keep pants up, they are operating portions of the vehicle. Before they break completely, listen to your mechanic when they are getting worn. Replacing a belt with a new one can prevent you from being pulled over on the side of the road with a failed vehicle that now has a much larger issue. There are a number of belts in any vehicle and all of them can become worn, cracked, or loose over time.

Battery Replacement

Have you ever had to put new batteries into your remote control at home? How about your smoke detectors? Anything with a battery is going to wear out eventually and the same can be said about the battery in your vehicle. Unfortunately, it doesn’t last forever. But replacing the battery is a small issue compared to other accessories that cost much more.

These are a few of the smaller things that pay off when you pay attention to them and take care of them when you need to. If you aren’t sure when these auto repairs in Philadelphia, PA are necessary, the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center can help. Call us at (215) 755-1270 and we can help you figure out what needs to be done and when. SAR is located at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148.

auto repair in Philadelphia

Tire Auto Repair Needs

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There are a lot of important aspects in any vehicle, but when you think about it, the tires are the only thing that connect the vehicle to the road. They are an integral part to a vehicle’s safety and efficiency. When you need auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, it could be due to the tires. Here are a few things you can do to ensure that the tires operate as efficiently and effectively as possible.

Get Tire Rotation

Tires have tread on them that helps you to operate the vehicle safely. Once that tread wears down, the vehicle is no longer safe to drive. The thing is, the tread doesn’t always wear evenly, which can cause you to replace the tires before you should have to. The front and rear portions of your car support different weights so they will wear differently. Instead of allowing that, have the tires rotated every or every other time you get an oil change. This will help them to wear evenly so they last longer.

Check Wheel Alignment

The wheels on a vehicle have to roll freely and correctly at specific angles. When they are aligned well, they will wear evenly, and things will go just right. If they aren’t, the suspension could have issues. The biggest reason a car is knocked out of alignment is through a sudden impact. That could be something as large as an accident or as small as a pothole. When you have to get new tires, have the alignment checked and redone to make sure the entire system is on par.

Have Tires Replaced As Necessary

Have you heard of the penny check? IT’s a simple way to take a look at the treat on your tires yourself. Take a penny and insert it between the treads. If you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, the tread is too worn. When you go in for regular oil changes, you can have the tires checked and the technicians will give you percentage as to the wear on your tires. That can help you plan ahead and know about when the tires are going to need replacement. You can plan ahead, budget for the expense, and be prepared when the time comes.

When you work with Schafer’s Auto Center, we’ll take the best possible care of your vehicle from top to bottom, including the tires. When you need auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, or even general maintenance, we’ll keep the tire’s health in mind and give you advice as to what you can do to make them last as long as possible. When you do need new tires, SAR is here to guide you through that process, too. Call us for an appointment at (215) 755-1270, whether you need tire rotation, an oil change, or something else. We’re located at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148 and you can always stop by with questions. The tires on your vehicle are very important to helping you get where you need to go safely.

auto repair Philadelphia, PA

Routine Auto Repairs To Remember

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If you’re not a car person, it’s important to learn at least a little bit about car ownership and maintenance so you can stay on top of auto repair in Philadelphia, PA. While you don’t have to know the inner workings of the vehicle, you will want to know about some of the routine maintenance items that you have to take care of on a regular basis. Cars are machinery and they log hundreds of miles (or more) each month. The parts that operate together wear and you’ll need to keep everything in working order to get what you need from the vehicle. Here are some of the routine repairs and maintenance items you will need on any vehicle.

Oil Changes

The most notable and normal maintenance routine is the classic oil change. It’s essential to keep the oil in your vehicle clean and running smoothly so you don’t have engine problems, like overheating, that could cause huge and costly damage to the vehicle. It usually doesn’t take long for a service shop to do the job, especially if you have an appointment, and it can make a huge difference in the efficiency of your vehicle over the long haul. It’s also a good chance for mechanics to do a quick check up on the car.

Tire Replacement

The tires on your vehicle are the only things connecting the car to the road, so they take a lot of the wear when you stop, go, turn, and so on. Tires have tread patterns that help you drive safety and eventually, those wear down. Once the treads are worn, the car is no longer safe to drive ad you’ll need new tires. That happens, on average, every 50,000 miles or so. You can get more out of your tires by having them rotated to wear evenly.

Brake Maintenance

The brakes are a hard-working system. Think about bringing a large, heavy, metal object to a stop over and over again. The braking system could require a number of things over the years and they all need attention. The brake pads are the most common thing that needs to be replaced as they will be the first thing to wear. If you keep them fresh, the rest of the brakes are better off. You might also need a brake fluid flush to keep things operating well.

These are just a few of the main auto repairs in Philadelphia, PA that you will need on a regular or semi-regular basis as your vehicle ages and gets you from place to place safely. IF you aren’t’ sure when things need to be done, you can rely on the technicians at Schafer’s Auto Center to help you get on a regular schedule. Give us a call at (215) 755-1270 and tell us about your vehicle. We can then look at manufacturer recommendations for things like oil changes and help you set up something that works for you. We’ll also check over the entire vehicle whenever you bring it in to watch for brake wear and other important things. We’re located at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148.

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Creating A Budget For Auto Repairs

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Have you ever been in the situation where you had an unexpected repair and your budget just couldn’t handle it? You likely know, possibly even from experience, that auto repair in Philadelphia, PA never happens at a ‘good’ time. There’s no such thing as a convenient time for your car to need repairs, right? Since your car is vital to your life, it’s important to budget for repairs so you are prepared for those inevitable times.

When you set up your family budget, you likely have a car payment and insurance on that budget. But you would be smart to set aside a little every month for auto repairs as well as maintenance. You know you are going to have to get oil changes and it’s good to have maintenance checks as well. And you never know when something else might come up so it’s nice to have that pocket of money available for when things turn south on your vehicle.

Driving a car isn’t all about buying the car upfront. There are a lot of other expenses that go into car ownership. You have to get gas to make the car run, for example. You have to spend money on oil changes, new filters, and other such items. The car has to run smoothly to do you any good and, in the long run, that can cost you. Anticipate those costs and keep an eye on the owner’s manual so you know when the transmission fluid needs to be changed and other such things and you can prepare your budget accordingly.

You likely know how important care maintenance is. IT makes sense that by spending a little on maintenance checks on a regular basis, you can save a lot in the long run. It’s cheaper, for example, to get something small fixed now than to wait, have something major break down, and have huge costs ahead of you. While it might feel like your vehicle costs a lot, even on small things, it could be much worse.

If you need help budgeting for your auto repairs, the professionals in the industry can aid you in that process. While they can’t help you save or tell you how to control your money, they can tell you how much certain elements you will need cost (like oil changes!) and how often you will need to have those things done so you can ensure you have the money for it—plus some extra for unexpected repairs.

When you need auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, or maintenance of any kind, contact the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center. You can call us at (215) 755-1270 to set up an appointment or you can stop by and see us in person to talk over some issues at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148. We understand your vehicle is an investment and also a necessity in your life and we’ll help you take good care of it and make it last as long as possible.

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Auto Repair For An Overheating Vehicle

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There’s never a good time for your car to overheat. In fact, it usually happens at the worst possible time, right? And it could mean your vehicle needs serious auto repair in Philadelphia, PA. If you notice the temperature gauge rising toward the hot side, you shouldn’t continue to drive. Pull over so you don’t damage the engine by overheating it. Rather than risk expensive repairs later, it’s best to get things in line right away. Here are a few things that could be wrong if your vehicle has overheated.

Coolant That Isn’t Circulating

The coolant within the engine is responsible for keeping the temperature at the right level. This mix of water and antifreeze prevents the engine from freezing in cold months and overheating in hot months. If there’s a crack or leak, it can leak out or evaporate completely, which means there won’t be anything left to cool the engine and it will overheat. If there are hoses that are broken and not allowing the coolant in, the same can happen.

Leaking Fluids

If the antifreeze levels are always low, even when you add more, it’s likely because there is a leak in the system somewhere. You may or may not know where, but before you experience overheating on the side of the road, it’s best to get repairs done quickly.

Hoses Need To Be Replaced

Hoses can wear out and they can get blocked or even detach. If they aren’t blocked entirely, but only in part, they can still prevent the proper coolant levels from circulating to the right places. Hoses aren’t hard or expensive to replace, but if ignored, they can cause large enough issues.

Engine Malfunctions

If the coolant levels are normal and working okay, there can be serious engine issues that you need to address as soon as possible. They will only get worse if you let them sit so get them inspected as soon as you can get into the repair shop.

Reacting To An Overheating Situation

It can be very scary when your engine overheats, but it’s important to pull over and turn off the air conditioning right away. Instead, turn on the heater to blow some of the heat away from the engine of the vehicle. Try putting your car in neutral and then revving the engine to make the fan and water pump work fast and pull air into the radiator to cool down the engine. You can also open the hood to release heat and let air circulate, but be careful of possible hot steam that might come out.

If you need help with your engine, whether you suspect it’s going to overheat, or it already has, contact the specialists in auto repair in Philadelphia, PA at Schafer’s Auto Center. Call us at (215) 755-1270for an appointment or to ask questions. You can also visit with us in person or bring the vehicle to 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148. SAR technicians are here to help however we can.

auto repair in Philadelphia

Used Car Buying Tips

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If you are looking to buy a new car (or a new-to-you car), you’re not alone. Sure, there are new vehicles on the lots all over the place, but they aren’t always in your price range or budget. Used cars are usually more affordable, but they come with challenges as well. How can you get the right vehicle that will work well and take you a long way? Nearly 40 million used cars change owners each year. If this is the year for you, use these tips to your advantage so you don’t find yourself needing auto repair in Philadelphia, PA right after you drive off the lot.

Tip 1: Decide What You Can Afford

If you are taking out a loan for a used car, make sure you can afford the payments You need to know your bottom line and what you are comfortable spending. You don’t want to get a car you like and then realize later you can’t take the payments.

Tip 2: Make A List Of Options

There might be certain vehicles you find attractive or certain styles you want because of the space they have or the mileage they get. Make a list of possibilities so when you hit the used car lots, you have some targets. You might also have things in mind like, the car much be less than 5 years old or have fewer than 50,000 miles. List those details and stick to them.

Tip 3: Know Prices

Prices are often driven by where you are shopping. You can find used cars in new car dealership lots, used lots, private websites, and in many other locations. You want to know where you can get an honest deal and a good price for what you need.

Tip 4: Check Vehicle History Reports

When you find some possible vehicles, take a look at the vehicle history reports. You might find out that the vehicle has been in a serious accident and though it looks repaired, you just never know. The sooner you look at the history, the more you will know about it.

Tip 5: Have An Auto Repair Shop Take A Look

Most people don’t buy homes until the homes have been inspected. Likewise, it’s only smart to have a used car looked over by an auto repair shop before you invest in it. Bring the vehicle in for a full inspection so you know if everything is in good condition and in working order for now and for the future use.

If you are looking for a used vehicle, the auto repair in Philadelphia, PA at Schafer’s Auto Center are happy to help you figure out which vehicle is the best for the money you have to offer. Call us for an appointment at (215) 755-1270 and bring your options in and we’ll take a look and give you a full report and inspection. You can visit us at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148 and we’ll help you take care of whatever vehicle you choose once you make the purchase as well.

auto repair Philadelphia, PA

Maintaining The Heating And Cooling System With Auto Repairs

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Your heating and cooling system do a lot for your vehicle. First, it keeps you comfortable inside your car while you are driving to and from work and everywhere else. Second, another part you may not think of very regularly, the cooling system keeps the engine cool enough to operate at the proper temperature. The coolant in that area is a mix of water and antifreeze that circulates through the engine to take the heat away. The cooling in your vehicle often takes the proper level of Freon.

If you don’t have enough coolant in any area, your engine won’t stay cool and neither will the interior of the vehicle. Not only does your engine need coolant to stop from overheating, but it has to get the right kind of coolant, as the manufacturer instructs. Different makes of vehicles have different formulas for coolant that help to protect against corrosion. The coolant needs to be fresh and the additives that help stop corrosion deplete over time. The coolant itself, when it is getting old, can start to eat away at cooling parts within the system. You will be able to tell based on your owner’s manual when you need to get more coolant and what type.

The actual parts within the cooling system will wear out over time as well. The radiator is something that often has leaks or clogs because of deposits and heavy use over the years. IT can sometimes be cleaned or repaired, other times, it needs to be replaced. There are also pressure caps on radiators that can’t hold the right pressure any longer. Once those caps are replaced and the coolant is changed, that problem goes away. IT’s a good idea to change the caps if the coolant is being changed out.

Water pumps and hoses around the area can also leak and need to be repaired or replaced. And then there’s the thermostat part that opens and closes to help regulate coolant as it flows to the right location. Those can stick open or get stuck closed, which makes the cooling system malfunction. Those have to be replaced when that happens.

Engine damage is something no driver wants since it can be very expensive to repair or, worse yet, replace completely. The cooling system is an important function to the engine so when you get oil changes or other routine maintenance, have it checked over to maintain efficiency on every label.

Whether you know you need auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, or you just need an oil change and tune up, the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center are here to help. Call SAR at (215) 755-1270 to book an appointment or to ask questions about what your vehicle might need. You can also visit our shop at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148, talk to our technicians, and get tips on maintaining your vehicle for the best possible efficiency for as long as possible. We’re here to help however we can!

auto repair in Philadelphia, PA

Taking Care Of A Car’s Engine

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There are a lot of working parts that you have to care for within your vehicle to keep it operating smoothly. Some parts, you can see, and you know they need care. The tires, for example. You can tell when they are low and need more air and you can see with your eyes that they are worn and need to be replaced. However, the engine isn’t something you see on a regular basis. When your engine needs auto repair in Philadelphia, PA, it’s not something you may notice right away. Engine repairs can be expensive and it’s much better to keep your engine in working order in the first place. Here are a few things to do in order to take care of your engine.

Get Oil Changes

If you don’t get your oil changed on a regular basis, it’s the engine that suffers. The engine will eventually break down if you avoid the oil changes. Keep tabs on when you got the last oil change and how many miles you should go between them. Perhaps mark on your calendar when it has been three months since the last change so you can take a look at your mileage and see if you are due again.

Use The Right Oil

As is true with anything on the market these days, there are lots of different types of oil and some work better for your vehicle than others. Once your car hits a higher mileage, you might need a different type of oil, for example, to keep the engine in prime shape. Ask the auto repair technician what the manufacturer recommends for your vehicle or look it up in the owners’ manual to ensure you are getting the right type of oil for your engine.

Get Tune Ups

The engine works hand in hand with many other parts of your vehicle and in order to work efficiently, everything else has to work well, too. When you get those oil changes, have the technician tune up and check over the rest of the vehicle so you know that everything is working well together, and your car can run effectively for the long haul. You don’t’ want to get stuck somewhere in the winter (or ever!) because you avoided a good tune-up when you could have had one.

If you want to keep your engine in the best working order for as long as possible, pay attention to auto repair in Philadelphia, PA. Not everyone is comfortable with vehicles and their repair and maintenance needs and that’s okay, too, because you have Schafer’s Auto Center on your side. Give us a call at (215) 755-1270 and we can help you figure out when you need to mark an oil change on your schedule. We can also tune your vehicle up so that the engine and everything else is in fine working condition. Visit SAR with questions or for an appointment at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148 and we’ll help in any way we can.

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Helping Your Credit With Auto Repairs

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There are a lot of things that can happen to your credit over the years. Perhaps you racked up a little debt you weren’t able to pay off in time and now, your credit is suffering. You want to get a loan for a house or something else and your credit score is prohibiting that. Did you know that you can use auto repair in Philadelphia, PA to help repair your scores? Here’s how!

When you go to the auto repair center for an oil change, how do you pay for the service? Most people use a credit card and you probably will, too. When your credit card bill comes in, you need to plan ahead and make sure you have the money you need in your account to cover the oil change and everything else you’ve spent. Don’t spend money on your credit card unless you have the cash in hand to cover it. Then, pay the bill in full every month…on time. Even if you only charge oil changes and gas to the card, (which is a good idea while you get debt under control), you will be proving that you are trustworthy and can pay things on time and in full. That will help you raise your credit score little by little so you can get the loan you need.

If you go to a banker, one of the things you can show to prove that you are good with making plans is that you have regularly serviced your vehicle. You can take in payment stubs that showcase that you have gotten an oil change every so many miles and other things that have needed to be done. You don’t ignore your responsibilities. This may or may not hold much weight with a banker, but it’s something, at least.

If you have a car loan, paying that on time or at least making the minimum payment can help you repair your credit scores as well. Sometimes, if you have debt in too many places, it can be hard to get the payments in. Consolidate those, if you can, all to one location and that can help you have just one payment that you can afford to make all at once.

While it might not show right away, when you charge your auto repair in Philadelphia, PA to a credit card and then pay that card off in a timely manner every month, you are doing your credit score a service. That will help you raise the score so you can get a mortgage or a loan for another reason with a lower financing rate. When you need an oil change or another service, contact the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center by calling (215) 755-1270. We’re here to help with any car need you might have. At SAR, we won’t tell you that you need a service unless it’s what we would do on our own vehicle. Visit us soon at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148.

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Winter Preparations In Auto Repair

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Even though it’s just now starting to cool a bit and feel a little more like fall, winter will be coming before we know it. When you think about winter, you might remember your freezing fingers on your steering wheel and everything that can go wrong when you drive during that season. The good news is that if you do the right auto repair in Philadelphia, PA and other preparations, you can be ready for the winter months with ease. Here are a few tips trained professionals recommend:

Check The Battery

Cold weather has a huge impact on your vehicle’s battery. It’s always the coldest day that your car won’t turn over because of a dead battery. It’s never convenient so you want to make sure your battery is fully charged and ready to go. You can get a battery load test the next time you need auto repairs or an oil change to see if anything needs to be cleaned or changed out before the snow takes over the streets.

Change Wiper Blades

We’ve all seen people driving down the road with one small circle clear on their windshields as the snow and ice builds up. That’s likely due to bum wiper blades. It’s dangerous to drive when you can’t see, and you don’t want to be that person putting yourself or others in danger. Get new wiper blades before the winter hits so you have fresh vinyl to wipe the snow and ice away. Also check your wiper fluid and top it off for when things get slushy.

Check Tire Pressure

Every time or every other time you get gas, walk around your car with a gauge and check your tire pressure. Some vehicles even have interior gauges today that will give you a digital reading on the dashboard whenever you want. Keep an eye on that because colder air can cause tire pressure to drop, which can impede on your gas mileage and even how well your car handles on the road. Keep the tires filled well to get the best traction.

Get An Emergency Kit Together

If you’re ever stranded in a ditch waiting for a tow truck, you’ll be so glad you have one of these. Put together some first aid materials, jumper cables, warm blankets, granola bars, water, and other items that you might need if you have a long wait and cold weather all around you.

When you get ready for winter, the professionals at Schafer’s Auto Center can help with auto repair in Philadelphia, PA. No one likes to think about the season changing too quickly, but it’ll be upon us before you know it. SAR can help with the changes you need to make to your vehicle to help it to run smoothly all winter long. Call us at (215) 755-1270 for an appointment or stop by and ask questions about what you need to do at 1924 S Columbus Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19148. We want your vehicle to be safe on the road in every season.