Is It Time To Bring Your Vehicle In For Service?
Is your vehicle making weird noises or feel like something is wrong? Find out all the typical signs your vehicle needs a tune-up and if you need to bring it to the mechanic today. Regular tuneups and vehicle checks will ensure your car or truck will always run in tip-top condition, save you from major problems in the long run.
10 Signs Your Vehicle Needs a Tune Up
Your vehicle is in need of a tune up if you are experiencing any of the following issues while driving or parked:
- You’re not getting the mileage you used to
- Your car, van or truck is always stalling
- Your vehicle won’t start or keeps turning over
- It takes long to gain appropriate speed
- You hear knocking in your engine
- The check-engine display-light is on
- Your steering wheel veers to the left or right while driving
- Your brakes don’t feel like they’re working
- You can smell strange odours coming from your engine
- Your vehicle vibrates when you’re driving
Read through the following for a brief explanation.
You’re Not Getting the Mileage You Used To
The following is a list of reasons you could experience decreased mileage:
- Tire pressure issues: tires are not holding the proper air pressure affects mileage.
- Spark plug issue: spark plugs will start to misfire causing mileage issues.
- Air filters issues: your engine needs clean air to function properly and efficiently.
- Dirty fuel injectors: dirty or old fuel injectors will affect how much mileage you get.
- Running your air conditioner: running your A/C will reduce the mileage you get.
- New motor oil: a recent change to the motor oil you use could cause idling issues.
- Too much idling: if you regularly idle for long periods of time, your mileage will be affected.
- Exhaust system: you could have issues with your catalytic converter, oxygen sensor, muffler or exhaust pipe.
Your Car, Van or Truck is Always Stalling
Stalling is usually caused by there being a lack of fuel, your engine is not receiving enough air, or there is not enough power to run your engine properly. Common reasons for a stalling vehicle:
- an empty gas tank
- a faulty fuel pump
- a failing sensor
- fouled spark plugs
- water in the fuel
- a bad ignition coil
Your Vehicle Won’t Start or Keeps Turning Over
When a vehicle won’t start it’s usually caused by the following:
- a dying battery
- a dead battery
- loose and corroded connection cables
- a bad alternator
- issues with your starter
It Takes Long to Gain Appropriate Speed
If your vehicle has a hard time gaining normal speed it could be for one or more of the following reasons:
- mass air flow sensor (maf) dirty or faulty
- oxygen sensor malfunction
- throttle position (tps) sensor malfunction
- clogged or dirty air filter
- timing belt issue
- failed catalytic converter
- fuel system troubles
You Hear Knocking in Your Engine
Engine knocking could be caused by a few reasons including:
- fuel has a low octane rating: low octane gasoline can be the cause of engine knocking.
- incorrect spark plugs: using the wrong spark plugs for your vehicle can cause knocking.
- bad timing: if the spark plugs are not firing properly it can lead to engine knock.
- bad knock sensor: your knock sensor may be malfunctioning or in need or repair.
- worn rod bearings: as rod bearings wear out, the pistons will start to rattle against the crankshaft.
- bad belt tensioners/pulleys: knocking could be caused if the tension in your engine belts are off.
The Check-engine Display-light is On
If your check-engine light is coming on when you start your car or driving, you may need an oil change, but you may also need your mechanic to replace or look at the following parts of your vehicle for issues:
- ignition coils
- spark plugs
- oxygen sensor
- catalytic converter
- loose gas cap
- emissions purge control valve
- mass airflow sensor
- fuel injector
Your Steering Wheel Pushes Left Or Right While Driving
If your steering wheel veers to the left or right while you’re driving you should call your tire mechanic as soon as possible. The most likely reason for veering is that your wheel alignment is off, but could also be caused by the following:
- tire alignment: over time your wheel alignment could become thrown off because of hitting rocks, curbs, or potholes.
- uneven tread wear: wheels that are not regularly rotated can cause uneven tread, which can throw off your alignment.
- low tire pressure: regularly low tire pressure can lead to wheel alignment issues.
- wheels need rotating: like low tire pressure, your wheels may need to be rotated.
- faulty tire conicity: tire conicity occurs if there is a manufacturing error in the tires.
Your Brakes Don’t Feel Like They’re Working
If your brakes don’t feel like they’re working properly, you probably need brake repairs but it could also be due to a few problems:
- a leak in a brake line
- a loss of pressure within the master cylinder
- a failed seal
- air being introduced into the braking system
- brakes need to be replaced
Smelling Strange Odours Coming From Your Engine
There could be several reasons you are smelling odours in your car. Some of the reasons are not a cause for concern, but there are other reasons that could mean it’s time to visit your mechanic.
Certain odours can indicate the presence of a substances that can make you sick or cause severe reactions.
Some of the more serious reasons for the smell of odours in the cab include:
- oil leaking onto the the engine or the exhaust system
- your vehicle’s heating system core is seeping chemicals
- the vehicle could be leaking gas – gas line leak
- electrical system burning fumes
Your Vehicle Vibrates When You’re Driving
Don’t ignore when your vehicle vibrates or shakes. The vibration could be caused by a number of issues that need to be looked at as soon as possible. Some causes of vehicle vibration include:
- issues with your brakes
- your tires may need balancing
- your brake rollers could be ‘out of round’
- a defective tire
- a bent wheel
- worn out U-joint
What To Do Now
If you’re experiencing any of the above issues with your vehicle, get to your mechanic soon. They’ll be able to determine your issue and get you back on your way to safe driving again!