1. What should you do if your starter overheats?

Unfortunately, your engine can get damaged if your vehicle overheats for a long time. Find a safe place to pull off the road if you are on the highway when this happens. Shut the engine off immediately. Your radiator fluid will be too hot, so do not attempt to check it, or you may otherwise get burned. When your automobile cools off, you should hurry up to visit an auto repair service center. If the case does not allow you to drive anymore then, you may even need to get your car towed.

2. If my brakes make a grinding or groaning noise at a low speed, does it mean that they are going bad?

You will need to get your vehicle inspected by a brake repair specialist in order to determine that. This particular noise, however, is considered normal, especially on automobiles with semi-metallic pads or mostly cars with front wheel drive. When you stop slowly, the brakes of your vehicle vibrate against the rotor surface which is in most cases the case in which you hear these sounds. Of course, if it happens too often, it cannot be considered a normal thing, and you should visit a repair garage as soon as possible.

3. What is a brake inspection?

This is a process of a complete brake system check-up. It is normally performed in an auto body shop, and you are provided with a detailed report afterwards regarding the current condition of your brake parts. It can show you whether you need to replace or repair any parts in order to match the car’s manufacturer standards. A full brake inspection may include a check-up of the following:

  • springs and adjusters (hardware)
  • rotors and drums
  • parking brake cables
  • wheel cylinders and hoses
  • master cylinder fluid exchange
  • the condition of the brake fluid
  • grease seals and wheel bearings
  • calipers
  • pads and shoes

4. What is the frequency with which I should rotate my tires?

It is recommended to rotate your tires every 6,000 miles. Of course, this also depends on the individual characteristics of your vehicle. If you want to avoid premature tire wear, you better get them checked when you visit an auto body garage.

5. How to check if my battery has a good electrical connection?

The best thing to do is to regularly clean your battery cables. If you inspect them thoroughly and periodically, they will provide a good connection.

6. When should I get a smog inspection?

A Smog Check certificate of compliance or non-compliance according to the Health and Safety Code in San Francisco, CA is valid for 90 days. So, this is basically the interval for doing such an inspection. Vehicles which are six years old or newer are not required to participate in the biennial Smog Check Program. It basically refers to vehicles which are gas-powered and are manufactured after 1976 but not later than 2007. If you need a reliable contractor to perform it, however, you can count on City Auto Tech. Call (415) 643-6129 to get more information!