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Rusty's Garage Maintenance Tips: The Belt Goes On

Rusty's Garage Maintenance Tips: The Belt Goes On

All The Woodlands service advisors know that without the alternator, the battery will go dead in a few miles. The serpentine belt may also run the pumps for both the power steering and power brakes. And on many vehicles, the serpentine belt powers the water pump. The water pump circulates coolant through the engine to keep it within normal operating temperatures. (On some vehicles, the water pump is powered by the timing belt instead of the serpentine belt.) So you can see the serpentine belt does a lot of work. And it if breaks, it affects a lot of systems. That's why your vehicle manufacturer and your service advisor at Rusty's Garage have recommended that it be changed every so often so that it doesn't fail.Your friendly and knowledgeable Rusty's Garage service advisor can perform a visual inspection of the belt to see if it has any cracks that signal the belt could fail soon and will measure the a ... read more

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Maintenance

Clean Slate (Protecting Vehicle's Finish)

Winter is one of the hardest times to keep your vehicle clean. But did you know neglecting to wash your vehicle in winter could cost you a significant amount of money in the long run? Here's why. Many areas deal with snow and ice in the winter, and the salt and sand that are used to keep the road surfaces from being slick are also super corrosive to a vehicle's metal body and undercarriage.  That includes all the parts underneath that can be splashed with brine, saltwater and other road debris.  Winter is also tough on vehicles where there isn’t snow, sometimes from ocean salt or winter's extra humidity and rain.  If you have any breaks in your vehicle's paint, whether it be from a little fender bender or a stone chip, that corrosive winter moisture can get through those cracks and start eating away at the metal underneath.  If you can, you should get any dents or damage fixed as soon as possible so your vehicle has a protective layer of paint between road che ... read more

Go Straight: Wheel Alignment for The Woodlands Automobiles

The Woodlands drivers may have an alignment problem if their car drifts or pulls to one side, the steering wheel's off center, they notice uneven tire wear or the car doesn't feel like it handles right as they drive down The Woodlands, Texas, streets and roads.When all of a vehicle's wheels are lined up exactly with each other, your wheels are in alignment. Running into potholes, smacking a curb or other objects around The Woodlands are great ways to knock a car out of alignment. Then one or more of your wheels start pulling in a slightly different direction and the problems begin.The team at Rusty's Garage in The Woodlands wants you to know that driving for an extended time when your car is out of alignment causes your tires to wear unevenly and excessively. Sometimes the tire can be worn so badly that it will fail.At the very least, those who drive with wheels out of alignment will have to replace their tires sooner. You could end up with premature wear to your suspension system ... read more

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Alignment

Air Conditioning Maintenance at Rusty's Garage in The Woodlands

Warm weather or cold, The Woodlands drivers still need to think about their vehicle's air conditioning. Most The Woodlands people don't service their air conditioning until after it fails. At Rusty's Garage, we can advise you on your vehicle manufacturers preventive maintenance schedules for air conditioning service, just as we do for transmission service, oil changes and so on. Maintaining your air conditioning system means that you always have enough refrigerant to properly do the job. Small leaks in the vehicle's air conditioning system allow the refrigerant to escape and the system can't cool the air as well. We see that a lot at Rusty's Garage in The Woodlands.The refrigerant also contains oil that lubricates air conditioning components and keeps the seals resilient. Low refrigerant and lubricating oil means that the air conditioning parts will wear out prematurely, and all The Woodlands vehicle owners know that air conditioning re ... read more

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Air Conditioning

Tire Replacement: What The Woodlands Drivers Need to Know

Looking at getting some new tires? Maybe the real reason for wanting those off-highway tires is that they look cool. Well there's nothing wrong with that. If you make sure that you've got your functional needs covered with your selection, then you can have some fun with where you go from there.Let's suppose you zip around The Woodlands in a sporty car. You may like to run a high-performance summer tire when the weather's good. When Texas weather turns cold, you can put on high-performance winter tires. For the kind of driving you like to do, you want full-on performance tires. All-season tires are naturally a compromise that works well for most The Woodlands drivers, but since you have a choice, go for dedicated summer and winter tires.When it's time for new tires, visit with a knowledgeable Rusty's Garage tire professional. Describe your needs and wants. He'll come up with some selections for you to discuss. And once you settle on a type of tire, there are options for special needs ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Steer Clear of Power Steering Problems (Power Steering Maintenance)

We usually take our vehicle's easy steering for granted until something goes wrong.  Power steering is what makes it almost effortless to turn the steering wheel, aiming your vehicle in the direction you want to go. Without the assistance of power from the engine, steering would be a laborious process, so you want to make sure the system is working well. Power steering systems are usually one of two types, hydraulic and electric.  The hydraulic type uses a pump that is driven by either a belt or an electric motor.  This system uses hydraulic fluid to create pressure that gives your steering the power assist.  Since that pump is always working, time and distance traveled eventually take their toll, and these systems need to be periodically inspected.  Also, while that hydraulic fluid can last for years, it should be replaced periodically as it degrades over time. Your vehicle's owner's manual contains the manufacturer's recommendations. A technician can check fo ... read more

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Steering

Breathe Free in The Woodlands: Cabin Air Filter Replacement at Rusty's Garage

There are a lot of new features, both optional and standard, on The Woodlands drivers' vehicles these days. One you may not have heard of is called a cabin air filter. Simply put, its job is to keep the air in the passenger compartment of your car nice and clean.A cabin air filter is similar to the filter you use on your furnace at home in The Woodlands. Cabin air filters can catch particles down to three microns. By comparison, a grain of sand is 200 microns. So cabin air filters are effective against dust, dirt, pollen, mold spores and most pollutants in our The Woodlands area atmosphere. Good news if you suffer from any types of allergies, or if you live in an area in Texas prone to air pollution.Cabin air filters are generally located in the engine compartment or under the dashboard. They can be tricky to access and replace, so you'll probably want to go to your friendly and knowledgeable service advisor at Rus ... read more

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Cabin Air Filter

Fuel Injection: It Keeps Getting Better for The Woodlands Drivers

The Woodlands residents know that engines need to burn fuel to operate. Fuel is pumped from your fuel tank to your vehicle engine where it is squirted—or injected—into your engine's cylinders. This is the function of the fuel injectors.There are two ways to inject fuel into an engine. Fuel needs air to burn, so in the first method, fuel is injected into a port and allowed to mix with airbefore it is drawn into the cylinders. In the second method, fuel is injected directly into the cylinders and mixes with air after it enters the vehicle engine.Direct injection engines burn fuel more efficiently than conventional vehicle engines. Some models can deliver the power of a V8 with the economy of a V6.For example, in one family of engines, the conventional version (a V6) delivers about 250 horsepower. The direct injection version delivers over 300 horsepower and gets about the same gas mileage. The turbocharged version delivers 350 horsepo ... read more

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Fuel System

Battery Replacement at Rusty's Garage in The Woodlands

Battery Replacement at Rusty's Garage in The Woodlands

Hello, welcome to Rusty's Garage. Today's focus is batteries. It seems like everything in The Woodlands runs on batteries. Of course, the batteries we're most concerned with here at Rusty's Garage are those in our customer's vehicles. Just like the batteries in our smoke detectors or TV remote, they wear out and need to be replaced . This can be thought of as the power output used to start a cold vehicle engine. The number of cold cranking amps you need depends on your vehicle and where you live in Texas, specifically how cold it is. (Many The Woodlands drivers have first-hand experience trying to start their car on a cold winter morning.) The two factors are that the colder your vehicle's engine is, the more power it takes to turn the engine over to get it started. It has all that cold, sluggish oil to contend with.The other factor is that the chemical reaction in the battery that creates electrical energy is less efficient when the temperature dips. Let's ... read more

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Battery

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Wheel Bearings

Why are wheel bearings for The Woodlands vehicles important? It's simple: your wheel bearings keep the wheels on your vehicle. In today's Rusty's Garage post, we'll discuss more about wheel bearings and how you can make sure they can do their very job while you drive around The Woodlands, Texas. Wheel bearings are pretty simple parts. They're made of high quality steel and are engineered to last 100,000 miles (160,000)  or more if properly cared for. The bearings do two jobs: First, they allow the wheel to freely rotate with as little friction as possible. Second, they support the weight of the vehicle. For example, if your car weighs 3,600 pounds (1600 kilogram), each wheel has to support approximately 900 pounds (400 kilograms). That's a lot of heavy lifting over those long distances.Even though wheel bearings are pretty straightforward, they need to be in near perfect condition to do their job for The Woodlands vehicles. The bearings are packed with heavy greas ... read more

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Tires and Wheels
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