Stratford Auto Repair

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Car Essentials to Have on Hand During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Car Essentials to Have on Hand During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Our nation has been hit with an outbreak of the COVID-19 virus that appears to be spreading at a rapid rate. We know that this pandemic can be scary, but the best way to get through it together is by following CDC regulations and being as prepared as possible.  During this time, our government has enforced that we practice social distancing throughout the nation. This means staying home unless you need to leave for work or to pick up essentials. It also means no gathering, avoiding crowds, and restricting travel to essential needs only. This is all apart of an effort to prevent COVID-19 from further spreading throughout the US.  One of the ways that you can be prepared is by ensuring that your vehicle has all of the essentials that you may find yourself or your family needing during this time. We recommend having the follow items on hand in your vehicle during this pandemic: Liquid hand sanitizer Clorox or other disinfecting wipes Gloves Water Flashlight Spare tire, j ... read more

What Can Cause a Loud Screeching Noise When I Start My Car?

You get into your car in the morning on the way to work and start it up...only to hear a loud screeching noise. The noise subsides, and you continue driving as normal. But the next day - it happens again. What could be causing this loud screeching noise that only happens when you start your car? More than likely - you've got a belt problem. However, there are a few different options for causes when it comes to this occurrence. Lets dive into what those causes may be and what you should do next.  The belts, pulleys, and tensioners in your vehicle's engine, when working as they should in proper condition, will be quiet and unnoticed. However, when one of these components is worn, frayed, or snapped - you will begin to notice the noise. As soon as you hear a screeching or slapping sound coming from the engine, whether on start up or throughout your drive, it is important to get your vehicle inspected right away. A broken belt can lead to other engine damage and rep ... read more

Tips on Making your High Mileage Car Last

It is a myth that vehicles over 100,000 miles are essentially ready for the junkyard. With proper care and maintenance, today's vehicles can last well over 100,000 miles and continue to be reliable for years to come. Here are our top tips on how to make your high mileage car last: Use high quality products and parts - when you bring your car into Desi Auto Care for all of your vehicle's needs, your repairs and services will be perfomed with factory level or better parts and high quality parts to aid in extending your vehicle's life.  Pay attention to your vehicle's fluids - your vehicle runs on many different fluids that are vital to the overall performance of your car. Fluids to keep an eye on include motor oil, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and brake fluid. Be sure to follow your vehicle's manufacturer recommendations when it comes to fluid services.  Keep your car clean and washed - dirt and debris can affect the exterior of your vehicle ... read more

How Do I Drive Safely Through a Snowstorm?

Driving during a winter storm is a situation that most of us may try to avoid. However, if you are already on your way and a winter storm hits and you have no choice but to drive through it, the following winter storm driving safety tips can come in handy.  If you have some flexibility when it comes to when you need to drive through winter storm prone areas, be sure to look up weather conditions through major passes or highways along the way. This will help you better understand the conditions you will hit and inform you to make a better decision if driving through a snowstorm can be avoided.  If you find yourself driving through a winter storm, here are some safety tips to follow:  Keep a close eye on the road and be weary of black ice which can be difficult to detect.  Always drive slowly and carefully and eliminate all distractions if possible.  When you do drive over ice or snow and feel that your vehicle has lost traction, the important thing is to no ... read more

Happy Thanksgiving from Desi Auto Care!

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us here at Desi Auto Care! We hope that you had a wonderful holiday with friends and family. With all the holidays comes lots of travel, so if you are planning a road trip in the near future, we recommend that you check off some important travel measures before you hit the road.  Be sure to have your vehicle inspected by the experts here at Desi Auto Care before you hit the road. You never want to be caught in a situation where you are stuck without a working vehicle, so guaranteeing that your vehicle is ready for any road trip will keep your family safe and bring you peace of mind on the road.    Pack ample blankets and coats for the road to keep warm if you’re traveling in the cold this winter.    Have an emergency kit on hand in your trunk to help out in cases of emergencies. Some things to make sure you have with you include a spare tire, jack, wrench, flashlight, flares, cell phone charger, and first aid kit ... read more

Prepare Your Vehicle for Winter

The winter season brings harsher and colder weather, which can often include rain or even snow when the temperatures fall below freezing. Making sure that your vehicle is prepared to handle any weather will ensure that you will stay safe on the road with the weather changes and won't run into any major problems during the season.  Prepare your vehicle for the winter by checking off the following maintenance items:  Flush or Top-Off Fluids Fluids that should be inspected and either topped off or flushed include engine oil, power steering fluid, brake fluid, transmission fluid, windshield wiper solvent, and coolant. Clean and topped off fluids will help make sure that all systems are running smoothly.  Inspect Hoses and Belts With colder weather, hoses and belts are more vulnerable to cracking and breaking. All hoses should be checked for corrosion and belts should be examined for obvious wear, tears, or frayed edges. A cracked ho ... read more

Warning Signs of An Aging Timing Belt

The timing belt in your vehicle has a very important job - it allows the crankshaft and camshaft to move in sync and ensure that engine valves and pistons operate smoothly together. A severely aged timing belt can snap unexpectedly which can actually cause your engine to fail completely, which is why having your timing belt replaced before it breaks is vital to preventing additional engine damage and avoiding vehicle breakdowns.  Most vehicles can go up to 100,000 miles before needing a timing belt replacement, however, your vehicle's owner's manual will advise you on how often your vehicle will need this service completed. If your timing belt is nearing the end of its life, you will notice one or more of the following aging timing belt warning signs:  Engine will not start Ticking noise coming from underneath the hood Engine slips or misfires Engine runs roughly Poor vehicle performance and fuel efficiency  As soon as you notice any of the symptoms ab ... read more

How to Handle Potholes

Potholes in the road are always something that we try to ignore as drivers. Driving over potholes never feels good, and it seems obvious that they usually cause some damage to our vehicles if driven over fast enough. There are certain measures that you can take while driving over potholes that can help minimize damage to your vehicle and make your ride smoother.  Potholes happen when water gets into the soil under the road, which eventually freezes and then thaws, weakening down the road. An excessive amount of driving over these areas can cause potholes to form.  Here are some tips on how to drive with potholes in the road:  Learning how to safely avoid potholes is very helpful. If you live in the area, you may be familiar with your surrounding roads.  If you can't avoid the pothole, try to slow down when driving over them and keep a tight grip on your wheel.  Make sure your tires are always inflated to factory recommendations to avoid a tire blowout ... read more

Car Battery Dead? Here's What To Do Next

Getting into your car to discover that it won't start up can be a hassle. You may hear that “click-click-click” noise of your ignition attempting to start your car, or hear nothing at all. The good news is - a car battery is typically an easy fix. It just depends on what the exact problem is.  If your car won’t start, one of the first things you can attempt is starting your car with jumper cables. You may need to enlist a family or friend to help you out, as you will need another vehicle. If jump starting your car works - great! That is always a good sign. However, it doesn’t mean that your car battery is good to go. If you are successful at jump starting your car, you should drive your vehicle into your local trusted auto repair shop for a quick check. We will use a tool to check your battery and see how much life it has left. It will also help us determine if the issue was caused by the battery itself, or by a component in the starting and char ... read more

Symptoms of Brake Failure

Our brakes are an important safety feature of our vehicles, helping us slow down and stop efficiently on the road. This is why it is so important to be aware of what a brake problem can look like and what to look out for. If a brake problem does happen, we recommend having your vehicle inspected as soon as possible to protect your safety. Brake issues can show in a number of different ways, including strange noises or a change in performance.  Here are some signs that your brakes may be failing: Pedal feels “spongy”  Vibrating when you press on the brakes Lack of performance Squealing or screeching noise while braking Pedal goes to the floor If you’re experiencing any of the issues listed above, bring your vehicle into our shop as soon as you can. We will perform a full vehicle inspection to determine what the issue may be. You may need new brake pads, a brake rotor resurfacing, and more.  Some of the most common brake problems include: Master c ... read more

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