Madison Heights Auto Repair

Give us a call:(248) 307-1200

Articles:

Serpentine Belt Service at Interstate Auto Care in MADISON HEIGHTS

Serpentine Belt Service at Interstate Auto Care in MADISON HEIGHTS

If you've ever heard a squealing sound under your vehicle hood, chances are it was your serpentine belt. More importantly, the belt powers the alternator. The alternator creates electricity that's used by your vehicle's electrical systems and also charges the battery. Without the alternator, the battery will go dead after a short distance.The serpentine belt may also run the pumps for both the power steering (some are electric) and power brakes (some use vacuum boost).And, on most vehicles, the serpentine belt powers the water pump. The water pump circulates coolant through the engine to keep it within optimal operating temperatures. On some MADISON HEIGHTS vehicles, the water pump is powered by the timing belt instead of the serpentine belt.When they understand what it does, MADISON HEIGHTS drivers realize that if it breaks, it affects a lot of systems. That's why vehicle manufacturers outline recommended replacement guidelines in the owner’s manu ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance

Interstate Auto Care and the Maintenance Mindset

Interstate Auto Care and the Maintenance Mindset

When it comes to their vehicles, some MADISON HEIGHTSresidents don't have amaintenance mindset. They know they need to take care of their cars, but it just seems really hard to get them to remember to do it. MADISON HEIGHTS drivers generally accept that many things in life require regular maintenance but just may not have applied it to their vehicles.Here's something that will help: The key to good vehicle maintenance starts with the oil change. Think about it – when you go in for a full-service oil change, your friendly and knowledgeable Interstate Auto Care service advisor will check all your fluids. If one of them is low, he can look for the reason. If your serpentine belt is cracked, he'll see it and let you know. Corroded battery cable – they've got you covered. And at Interstate Auto Care, we check to see if you ... read more

Categories:

Maintenance

A New Battery in MADISON HEIGHTS

A New Battery in MADISON HEIGHTS

Hello MADISON HEIGHTS drivers, let's talk about batteries. Car batteries are just like any rechargeable battery. They will eventually wear out and die. If you are shopping for a new battery in MADISON HEIGHTS, here's some auto advice to help you.There are two measurements to consider when purchasing a new battery: cold cranking amps and reserve capacity. The power required to start a cold engine is measured in cold cranking amps. The number you need is determined by what kind of vehicle you drive and where you live. In general, higher-cylinder engines require more cold cranking amps than lower-cylinder engines. In other words, an eight-cylinder engine needs more cold cranking amps than a six-cylinder one. Also, diesel engines require more cold cranking amps than gasoline engines.The weather where you live in MI also determines the number of cold cranking amps you need. The colder  ... read more

Categories:

Battery

MADISON HEIGHTS Alignment Service

Your car might have an alignment problem if: it drifts or pulls to one side, your steering wheel is off center, you have uneven tire wear or your car doesn't feel like it handles right. When all of a vehicle's wheels are lined up exactly with each other, your wheels are in alignment. Running into potholes around MADISON HEIGHTS and smacking a curb or other object are great ways to knock your car out of alignment. Then, one or more of your wheels starts pulling in a slightly different direction and the problems begin.There are several things involved in an alignment check at Interstate Auto Care. First, there's an inspection of the steering and suspension systems - their components should be checked to see if anything's bent or broken. Then the tire condition needs to be inspected. From there, the vehicle is put on an alignment rack and an initial alignment reading is taken. If all four wheels are adjustable, they are lined up perfectly parallel with the vehicle's center line ... read more

Categories:

Alignment

Direct Fuel Injection Update from Interstate Auto Care

Direct Fuel Injection Update from Interstate Auto Care

For those of you in MADISON HEIGHTS, MI who pay attention to these things, you may have been hearing about the new direct injection engines and want to learn more about them. Some deliver the power of a V8 with the economy of a V6.For example, in one family of engines the conventional V6 makes about 250 horsepower. The direct injection version of the same engine makes over 300 horsepower and gets essentially the same fuel economy. The turbocharged version makes over 350 horsepower.So what are the differences from a conventional engine?The core difference is in the fuel injection system. The system most vehicles use now is called a port injection system. The fuel injector squirts fuel into a port just outside the cylinder where it's then drawn into the engine with the air.With a direct injection system, the injector squirts the fuel directly into the cylinder. The gain in power and economy come because fuel injected directly into the cyli ... read more

Categories:

Fuel System

What Is a Differential and Do You Have One?

What Is a Differential and Do You Have One?

With front-wheel drive being so common these days in MADISON HEIGHTS, MI, the differential is just taken care of during a transmission service, so most MADISON HEIGHTS drivers don't even have to think about it. And rear-wheel drive differentials don't need to be serviced for years, so it's understandable that it's not something on the top of MADISON HEIGHTS customers' minds. It's not uncommon for drivers to not know they have a differential let alone know that it needs service. Call Interstate Auto Care in MADISON HEIGHTS at 248-307-1200 for information about differential service, or stop by our MADISON HEIGHTS, MI, auto center at 526 E 14 MILE RD, 48071. To better understand what a differential does, think about our local MADISON HEIGHTS high school track. There are lanes marked off on the track. For the longer distance races, the starting lines are staggered. The starting lines for the outside lanes are ahead of the starting lines ... read more

Categories:

Drive Train

The Interstate Auto Care Guide to Saving Fuel: Get Rid of Dirty Oil

A lot of us drivers are asking ourselves the same question lately: how can we save on fuel? MADISON HEIGHTS area residents are all cutting back, if not in fuel consumption, then in other areas of our lives. Preventive Maintenance Preventive maintenance is an important way people in MADISON HEIGHTS can conserve fuel by improving fuel economy. And one of the easiest and most effective ways to do that is to keep the oil in our vehicle adequate and clean.Oil lubricates your vehicle engine and keeps it running smoothly. If you're running low, there is increased friction in your engine. Friction creates drag, which means it takes more fuel to keep the vehicle motor running. This all translates to lower fuel economy.Check your oil to make sure the engine is getting all it needs. Your owner's manual and service advisor at Interstate Auto Care will tell you the proper weight and type of oil for your vehicle. Responsible Car Care Dirty oil grits up your eng ... read more

Categories:

Fuel System

Automotive Tips from Interstate Auto Care: Serpentine Belt Tensioner

The serpentine belt tensioner applies pressure to the serpentine belt, maintaining optimal tension to drive the accessories like the alternator and A/C compressor. At Interstate Auto Care we know that the service life of the belt tensioner is the same as the belt itself, so they should always be replaced together. A worn tensioner prevents the accessories from spinning properly, leading to premature wear and noise for MADISON HEIGHTS drivers.Your vehicle manufacturer has a recommended mileage interval for serpentine belt replacement. A complete accessory drive system service replaces the serpentine belt, the belt tensioner and any idler pulleys your car might have. Your friendly and professional Interstate Auto Care service advisor can inspect your system and let you know if it’s time for a replacement.Give us a call.Interstate Auto Care526 E 14 MILE RDMADISON HEIGHTS, MI 48071248-307-1200  

Categories:

Serpentine Belt

Tire Rotation and Balancing at Interstate Auto Care in MADISON HEIGHTS

Tire Rotation and Balancing at Interstate Auto Care in MADISON HEIGHTS

Tires do a lot of work for MADISON HEIGHTS drivers. They transfer engine power and braking forces to the road; they handle steering control; and they cushion all those bumps and jolts while driving around MADISON HEIGHTS. They also support the entire weight of the vehicle, including you and your passengers. With such important work to do, you want your tires to do their job well. And since replacing tires is fairly pricey, you want them to last as long as possible. There are three keys to long, even tire wear for MADISON HEIGHTS driving: Proper tire inflation Proper wheel alignment Regular tire rotation and balancing The front tires on a car take the brunt of the steering forces. As they push through turns, the shoulders of the front tires wear down more quickly than the rear tires. Rotating front and rear tires allows them to all wear at about the same rate. That's especially true of front-wheel-drive vehicles whose front tires steer and put the power t ... read more

Categories:

Tires and Wheels

Fuel Saving Tip: Alignment for Your MADISON HEIGHTS Vehicle

Fuel Saving Tip: Alignment for Your MADISON HEIGHTS Vehicle

Imagine you've left MADISON HEIGHTS and you're up in the arctic on a dog sled.Your dog team is pulling straight and true. You can cover a lot of ground quickly. Now imagine what would happen if one or two of the dogs wanted to go their own way and were pulling off to the side.That would slow you down. You would have to work harder to keep the sled going where you want it. The dogs are all working as hard as before, but you're covering less ground for the same effort.You're wasting kibble.The same is true of your vehicle when the wheels are out of alignment. That wheel that's pulling to the side is dragging down the rest of the vehicle; so you push a little harder on the gas pedal to keep up your speed. You're wasting gas.So have your wheel alignment checked at least once a year. It is important to get it checked right away if you feel the vehicle pulling to one side.Sometimes we MADISON HEIGHTS residents bump a curb or hit a pothole and knock our wheels out of alignment. A ... read more

Categories:

Alignment
If You Are Using A Screen Reader And Are Having Problems Using This Website, please call Interstate Auto Care (248) 307-1200 For Assistance.