The Woodlands Auto Repair

Articles:

When "Shady" is a Good Thing

Just like your skin can burn from too much sun, so can the paint on your vehicle.  It can turn dull, oxidize and fade the more ultraviolet rays beat down on it. One solution is to park in a shady spot, or you can buy a cover for your vehicle and put it on when you know it's going to be sitting in the sun for awhile. Yes, it takes a couple of minutes to put on, but in the end, keeping the gloss on your paint will help it retain its beauty… and its value. And it's not just the sun that can damage your vehicle's paint.  Grit, bird droppings, sap, dust and dead bugs can all ruin the paint.  So, keep your vehicle clean.  Wash it with a soap made especially for vehicles. Dry it with special towels that won't scratch your paint.  Remember:  DON'T WASH YOUR VEHICLE IN THE SUN. Once your vehicle is washed, protect the paint even further with a coat of wax.  DON'T WAX YOUR VEHICLE IN THE SUN, EITHER. Don't forget the vehicle's interior.  Plastic com ... read more

Custom Wheels and Tires for Your The Woodlands Ride

  It seems like everywhere you go in the The Woodlands area you see custom wheels. Big trucks, little cars, mini-vans - it doesn't matter - are expressing themselves with custom wheels. Some Texas auto owners want smaller tires and wheels - some want larger - and some want them enormous. So where do you start if you want new wheels? At Rusty's Garage, we suggest you start with your budget. We know, that sounds so practical. But if the look you're after goes beyond just new tires and wheels and enters into the world of suspension modifications, you need to be prepared for the additional cost.Let's start with something easy - you want to give your ride a unique look and the stock wheel size is just right for you. One of the concerns you will have is that the new wheels have the same offset as your vehicle factory wheels.Your tire and wheel professional at Rusty's Garage in The Woodlands can help you find the right size wheel or install adapters to make your new wheels fit ... read more

Categories:

Tires and Wheels

PCV Valve Replacement

Hello The Woodlands, let's talk about your often-unnoticed but extremely important PCV valve. The energy from exploding fuel is what powers your engine. But some of the vapors from the explosions escape into the lower part of the engine, called the crankcase. The crankcase is where your engine oil hangs out. These gases are about 70% unburned fuel. If the gases were allowed to stay in the crankcase, they would quickly contaminate the oil and turn it to sludge. The Woodlands folks know that sludge is one of the biggest enemies of your engine, clogging it up and eventually leading to expensive failures. Also, the pressure buildup would cause seals and gaskets to blow out. Therefore, these gases need to be vented out.Pre-1963, gasoline engines had a hose that let the  fumes vent out into the air. In 1963, the federal government required gas engines to have a special one-way valve installed to help reduce dangerous emissions ... read more

Categories:

Parts

Automotive Tips from Rusty's Garage: 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 Rusty's Garage 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 The Woodlands 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 Rusty's Garage service advisor can inspect your system and let you know if it’s time for a replacement.Give us a call.Rusty's Garage25143 MELDA RDThe Woodlands, Texas 773808324958270http://rustys-garage.com  

Categories:

Serpentine Belt

Time for Differential Service at Rusty's Garage?

Hello The Woodlands - let's talk differentials. If you have a rear-wheel drive vehicle, your differential is on the back axle. With front-wheel drive cars, the differential is up front. All-wheel drive and 4-wheel drive vehicles have three differentials - front, rear and in the middle. So you see, you've got a differential (or two or three) and it needs service now and then.What does your vehicle differential do? Well, it compensates for the differences in speed between your outer and inner wheels in a turn. Using the dimensions of a typical car, let's compare the distance the wheels travel from the start of a turn through to the completion of the turn.The inside wheel travels about 12.6 feet/3.8 meters. How much farther does the outside wheel travel? About 18.8 feet/5.7 meters – over 6 feet/1.9 meters more. This means the outer tire has to rotate 9 times in the same amount of time that the inner tire has to rotate only 6 times - so ... read more

Categories:

Drive Train

Keeping Your Engine Cool in The Woodlands, Texas

The cooling system keeps Texas vehicle's engines from overheating while they are driving around The Woodlands. Its job is to move heat away from the engine. Let's talk about the various components of the system and how they make this happen.The radiator is the part most The Woodlands drivers associate with the cooling system. Coolant flows through the radiator which has fine cooling fins that draw the heat out of the coolant and dissipate it into the air. To make sure there's enough airflow over the radiator, a fan pulls air over the cooling fins even when the vehicle is idling.In some vehicles, the fan is powered by the serpentine belt. On others, an electric motor runs the fan. Electric fans turn on and off as needed. You may have heard the fan kick on shortly after you turn your vehicle off. The sensor has determined that the engine needs a little help cooling down to a safe temperature.A hose connects the radiator to the water pump ... read more

Categories:

Cooling System

Fuel Saving Tip: Tire Pressure Saves Fuel in The Woodlands

Underinflated tires waste gas for lots of folks in the The Woodlands area. Think how hard it is to walk in sand – you just have to work harder because of the resistance. When your tires don't have enough air in them, their rolling resistance is dramatically increased and it simply takes more gas to get from here to there.Always check your tire pressure when you gas up at one of our local The Woodlands service stations. If they're low – even just a little bit – bring them up to proper pressure. There's a sticker on the inside of your driver's door that gives the manufacturer's recommended tire pressure.And don't rely on your tire pressure monitoring system to alert you to when you need more air. The TPMS system is set to warn you when pressure drops 20 percent below recommendations. That's severely underinflated and you needed more air a long time ago. And if you have a slow leak – get it fixed right away at Rusty's Garage ... read more

Categories:

Tires and Wheels

Your Well Trained Technician at Rusty's Garage

When your vehicle has a problem or just needs some routine service, you might get a little nervous. Your vehicle's so important to your life in The Woodlands, you need to get back on the road as soon as possible – with the problem fixed right the first time.If you've ever checked into some of the technician training Rusty's Garage professionals receive, you may be surprised at how much specialized knowledge and skill goes into diagnosing and repairing a modern car. For example: Today there are four cylinder engines that generate more power than the 1980s-era V-8's. I mean a new V-6 Toyota Camry could beat Sonny Crocket's Ferrari in a race to 60 mph/100 kph. Our engines are more and more powerful and at the same time their fuel economy keeps inching up – even with steep The Woodlands gas prices. They are also amazingly reliable: Kudos to the automotive engineers. But the advances come at the price of simplicity. The moder ... read more

Categories:

Safety

What to Do in Case of an Accident in The Woodlands

Screeching tires, crunching metal – it's an accident! If you've ever been in a car accident in The Woodlands, even a minor one, you know how upsetting it can be. It's hard to think straight and know what to do.Let's review what The Woodlands drivers should do in case of an accident:When an accident occurs, you should always stop. Leaving the scene of an accident in The Woodlands is considered a crime - even if it's not your fault. And hit and run penalties are fairly severe, possibly resulting in steep fines, loss of your Texas driver's license or even jail time.Your jurisdiction may require that you try to help someone who is injured by calling for help or performing first aid if you are able. Warn other motorists by putting out flares, using your flashers or lifting your hood. Call The Woodlands emergency services as soon as possible. Tell the operator if medical or fire help is needed.You should always file a police report. It's tempting to skip this if e ... read more

Categories:

Automotive News

Don't Stack the Mat

In the sloppy cold weather months, you might be tempted to pick up an all-weather mat and throw it on top of the mats you already have in your vehicle. After all, double protection is better, right? In this case, wrong. Here's why. It's important to keep the accelerator and brake pedals clear so they can function the way they are supposed to. Stacking mats in the driver's side footwell can make them sit up too high on the floor. That can, in turn, jam your accelerator pedal forward, causing your vehicle to unintentionally speed up; it may get stuck in that position. Same thing applies to the brake pedal. The mats can get caught underneath it and prevent you from stopping. Here are some other good practices when it comes to mats. It's best to get those designed for your vehicle. They are shaped to fit your specific car, truck, van or SUV. Ill-fitting mats can have the same untended consequences as stacked mats. Good mats will have either a Velcro-type fastener on the back of them or a h ... read more

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