essential smartphone driving apps

7 Essential Smartphone Driving Apps to Take On the Road

essential smartphone driving appsAccording to the Pew Research Center, 81-percent of all Americans own a smartphone. That’s about a 120-percent increase from less than ten years ago, with the number of new smartphone owners expected to rise even further in the coming years. Smartphones have truly revolutionized the world. Providing the average person with a plethora of cutting edge, technologically advanced tools in the palm of their hand. It seems as if there is a smartphone app for just about everything, including driving. In today’s blog, we dive into seven essential smartphone driving apps that every motorist should have on their phone.

1.) Waze

This popular, free-to-use, GPS navigation app delivers real-time driving directions, traffic conditions, gas prices, and other useful information to all IOS and Android mobile devices. What sets Waze apart from the competition is its network of over 100 million active monthly users across the globe crowdsourcing up-to-the-minute traffic info and accident reports, along with alerting motorists of road hazards like potholes and police. Waze instantly processes all of this data while providing the most efficient, traffic-free routes possible, as well as seamless navigation. This easy-to-use, essential smartphone driving app is also known for its fun customizable voice options.

2.) Gasbuddy

While there is an abundance of apps dedicated to finding the best gas prices in town, Gasbuddy is the best in the breed. This free-to-download gas price app boasts an industry-leading network of over 60 million active users continuously sharing real-time fuel costs, updates, and ratings for over 140,000 gas stations across the United States, Canada, and Australia. Gasbuddy users are encouraged to report current gas prices by earning the chance to win free gas. Aside from helping drivers save money on gas, Gasbuddy offers an integrated gas station payment service, which includes a customer loyalty program.

3.) Plugshare

Plugshare supplies hybrid and electric vehicle owners with the latest prices, descriptions and alerts from more than 300,000 designated charging points located across the country. Also, Plugshare includes filters when searching for specific types of charging connections to ensure proper compatibility, as well as identifying rapid-charge stations and electric vehicle service and repair providers. This essential smartphone driving app is especially useful on road trips or cruising through unfamiliar areas, as it is not always easy to find charging or service stations for electric vehicles.

4.) Spotify

Music and driving go hand-in-hand. That’s why adding Spotify; the world’s number one music streaming service to our list of essential smartphone driving apps is a no-brainer. Just about any artist or song you can think of is available to stream on Spotify. The industry leading music app is also a podcast powerhouse, owning exclusive rights to some of the most popular podcasts on the air, such as The New York Times Daily and Barstool Sports, along with recently signing deals with celebrities like Joe Rogan and Kim Kardashian. Spotify offers an ad-based, free-to-use version as a well a subscription-based premium service with enhanced features and integrates seamlessly with most modern auto entertainment systems via Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

5.) Roadtrippers

Roadtrippers is the best pure road trip-planning app on the market. This handy, free-to-download smartphone app makes planning any road trip fun and easy. Allowing users to plan every aspect of their itinerary, including fuel consumption and travel time. Over five million specific locations like gas stations, restaurants, and lodging are plotted across the United States and Canada. Including detailed descriptions, reviews, and photos. The database also features other points-of-interest such as shopping, recreation, and cultural sites. Also, along with a myriad of other fun and interesting stops to break up the monotony of a long drive.

6.) Witness Driving

The only pay app on our list. For a reasonable 99 cents, you can transform your smartphone into a full-functioning dashcam with the Witness Driving app. For a fraction-of-the-cost of a dedicated auto dash camera, you can record your driving on a loop with this user-friendly app. Witness Driving is very useful for documenting evidence to be presented during insurance company disputes involving accidents. Also, fighting unwarranted traffic violations in court, as well as capturing other random events for fun. Witness Driving also logs the time, date, speed and location of every video.

7.) Repair Pal

Not all of us are “car people”. Repair Pal offers drivers a valuable resource that tracks any repairs done to your vehicle. Also, notifications for upcoming routine maintenance. In the event of a breakdown, Repair Pal can identify and contact the nearest available roadside assistance service provider. They can do this nationwide, 24-hours a day. Also, Repair Pal keeps real-time data on prices for each specific type of repair. They do this based on each individual vehicle’s make, model, and geographic location. This gives users peace-of-mind in terms of fair market value. While this app may be valuable on the road, Winston Salem locals know bringing your car or truck to Carolina Auto Service is always the right decision. Especially, if you’re looking for premium, ASE-certified auto repair service at an exceptional value.

Here at Carolina Auto Service we genuinely hope you received value from our list of essential smartphone driving apps that will not only help you save time and money but enhance your overall driving experience. With all the fancy apps and tech features available on today’s smartphones, we want to remind you to be safe. Lastly, stay alert and keep your eyes on the road.

Properly Disinfecting Your Vehicle in the Age of Coronavirus

Properly Disinfecting Your Vehicle in the Age of Coronavirus

As the world scrambles to deal with the fallout from the global Coronavirus pandemic, good hygiene and disinfection are paramount. In this unprecedented state-of-reality, where “social-distancing is the new-normal. And keeping all surfaces you come into contact with germ-free is absolutely essential. This would include properly disinfecting your vehicle’s surfaces for any virus particles that may have been contaminated with viral contagions. This is especially important for ride-sharing or public transportation vehicles such as taxis and buses, or app-based services like Uber. Here at Carolina Mobile Auto we have compiled a comprehensive guide on properly disinfecting your vehicle in the age of the Coronavirus.

Properly Disinfecting Your Vehicle: Where?

The steering wheel is one of the most important areas to focus on when disinfecting your vehicle. Did you know that a car or truck’s steering wheel can house up to four times the amount of germs and contagions as the average toilet seat? Aside from the steering wheel, focusing on any surface areas with high volumes of contact is key. Areas such as seats, dashboards, door handles, shifters, buttons and the seat-belt apparatus should be paid special attention. You will also want to concentrate on seat adjusters, the turn signal and wiper blade control. Additionally armrests, cup holders, storage containers, air conditioning vents and grab handles.

When cleaning any automotive touch screen displays, it is imperative not to use an excessive amount of water, which can damage electrical components. We also caution against using harsh abrasive chemicals when cleaning a touch screen, leading to the loss of its protective coating. Later in the blog, we discuss which cleaning products to use and which ones to avoid.

Alcohol

Isopropyl alcohol, commonly known as rubbing alcohol, serves as a highly effective disinfecting agen. It  eliminates most viral or bacterial contagions. Alcohol also delivers exceptional cleaning power, with the ability to break down and remove tough stains from a wide variety of surfaces. The main drawback of isopropyl alcohol is its continuous prolonged use will lead to premature wear-and-tear of vehicle surface materials.

Soap and Water

Common household soap, water and a little elbow grease are all you really need to rid your ride of any pesky virus particles. Most regular soaps on the market (think Dove or Ivory) are able to chemically break down virus cells similarly to how they dissolve oils. The friction generated from cleaning also contributes to the elimination of any virus or bacteria particles. Soap and water also serve as an effective, non-abrasive cleaning agent. Soap and water are effective on delicate surfaces such as leather, fabric and suede.

Disinfectant Wipes

Bleach-free disinfectant wipes provide a convenient, portable option for cleaning and sanitizing your vehicle on the go. Standard household disinfectant wipes deliver a quick effective way to eliminate most viral and bacterial contagions. A variety of automotive surface materials can handle disinfectant wipes to clean the surfaces.

When Properly Disinfecting Your Vehicle, Do Not Use

Here at Carolina Mobile Auto we advise all of our esteemed clients against using any bleach or hydrogen peroxide-based cleaning products. We also caution against the use of any ammonia-based blue-glass-cleaners like Windex on your vehicle’s surfaces. While the aforementioned products do a respectable job at cleaning and disinfection, they will also damage your vehicle’s surface materials. Not only will these products damage materials like leather and vinyl, they will also strip your vehicle’s surfaces of their color and protective coatings.

Wash Your Hands

The cornerstone in both fighting the spread of COVID19, as well as properly disinfecting your vehicle is washing hands. As you’ve probably heard countless times in the past several weeks, washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20-seconds eliminates virus particles from your hands. Frequent hand washing also mitigates the amount of contact any virus particles can potentially have with your vehicle’s surfaces. What’s the point of thoroughly disinfecting your car or truck, if you are constantly introducing a new barrage of viral contagions via your hands? Washing your hands on an hourly basis is a good rule that applies to staying healthy and stopping the spread the pandemic.

Hand Sanitizer

If vigilantly washing your hands frequently isn’t an option, then do the next best thing. Use an anti-bacterial hand sanitizer frequently. Sanitizing your hands helps prevent the transmission and spread of any virus cells to your car or truck. Here at Carolina Mobile Auto we recommend keeping a bottle of hand sanitizer handy when you leave your home. Practice caution when leaving hand sanitizer in your vehicle. High temperatures can cause the gases inside the sanitizer solution to expand and burst.

From the team over at Carolina Mobile Auto, stay safe, remain healthy. In these times of global crisis, we urge all citizens to remain calm and follow the Center of Disease Control’s (CDC) guidelines by staying home, washing your hands and practicing social-distancing. We are all in this together, and we will get through this together.

Choosing the Right Motor Oil for Your Car or Truck

Choosing the Right Motor Oil for Your Car or Truck

Choosing the right motor oil is one of the most important decisions you can make as a car or truck owner. An automobile is only as good as its engine and an engine is only as good as the oil running through it. With an abundance of car and truck engine oil options on the market, how do you know which one is right for your particular vehicle and unique driving style? In this month’s blog, we take a closer look at the four major types of motor oil, along with deciding on which one to choose.

Motor Oil Basics

Oil is the lifeblood of any vehicle. It lubricates and cools vital engine components, allowing the engine to run smooth and efficiently, maximizing lifespan, performance and gas mileage. Routine oil changes are the single most important aspect in maintaining the health and longevity of any engine. It is essential to use the correct motor oil specified in each individual car or truck’s owner’s manual. Most automobile manufacturer’s will recommend two different oil types, one for normal operating conditions and one for cold weather environments.

Viscosity Rating

Determination of a motor oil’s viscosity rating is based on its resistance to flow at higher and lower temperatures. Each vehicle make and model requires a specific viscosity rated motor oil based on its own individual performance and operating characteristics. For example, 5W-30 is the oil viscosity rating most commonly found in cars and trucks on the road today.

  • Low Temperature Viscosity
    • The first number in a motor oil’s viscosity rating indicates its low temperature viscosity grade. For instance, the “5W” in the rating “5W-30” specifies the oil’s ability to flow at 0 degrees Fahrenheit, or -17.8 degree Celsius. The lower the grade, the less the oil will thicken in colder temperatures. Engines that operate in colder environments would typically do better with a lower viscosity grade. The “W” in the viscosity rating stands for “winter”.
  • High Temperature Viscosity
    • The second number is an oil’s viscosity rating signifies its high temperature viscosity grade. For example, the “30” in the rating “5W-30” denotes a motor oil’s level of flow at 212-degrees Fahrenheit, or 100-degrees Celsius. The higher the grade, the more resistant the oil is to thinning at higher temperatures.

Four Most Common Types of Motor Oil

There are four common types of motor oils used in today’s cars and trucks: Conventional, Synthetic, Blended and High Mileage. Each type of engine oil offers its own set of strengths based on price, performance and practicality.

  • Conventional
    • Also called standard motor oil is mineral-based and provides excellent, lubricant, cooling, and protection characteristics. Conventional oil is ideal for low-mile vehicles that are well-maintained and operated mainly on highways in relatively dust-free environments. The main advantage of conventional motor oil is its lower cost of operation and overall value.
  • Synthetic Oil
    • Synthetic oil incorporates advanced chemical refinement technology that delivers increased performance, lubrication and protection characteristics. Many of today’s luxury, high performance and hi-tech vehicles specifically require synthetic oil. While synthetic motor oil provides more quality, it also tends to cost roughly three times the price of conventional oil. Synthetic motor oil is a great choice for drivers who tend to drive in dusty environments. Also for drivers that do a lot of stop-and-go driving. And lastly, for those drivers that go on very short trips, as well as engage in regular towing activity.
  • Blended Oil
    • As the name suggests, blend motor oil is essentially premium-grade conventional oil and also synthetic oil. Blended oil offers a nice combination of value associated with conventional oil, along with the superior quality synonymous with synthetic oil. Blended motor oil offers better performance during high temperature, high engine workloads than conventional oil. Modern SUVs and trucks tend to use blended oils due to their combination of price and performance.
  • High Mileage
    • High mileage motor oil is highly recommended for any vehicle with more that 75,000-miles on the odometer. The design of high mileage oil is specifically to minimize wear-and-tear and increase longevity and performance in older automobiles. Formulated with seal conditioner, high mileage oil protects and rejuvenates aging seals in older engines. High mileage motor oil is also contains a ton of special fuel additives that help clean build-up and reduce wear in vital engine components.

Looking around town, you will find there are still a lot of older vehicles on the road today. More often than not, these automobiles were service history includes regular oil changes. As well, it’s very probable that the vehicle received the correct type and weight of oil as per the manufacturers recommendations.

If you aren’t sure which motor oil to use in your vehicle, bring it on down to us at Carolina Mobile Auto. We’re conveniently located in Winston-Salem NC right off the Interstate 40 near South Stratford Road. Our team of ASE certified auto technicians will quickly and reliably recommend a motor oil based on your vehicle’s specific needs as well as your own unique driving style.

How to Find a Good Mechanic in the Winston-Salem NC Area

How to Find a Good Mechanic in the Winston-Salem NC Area

For the average car or truck owner in the Winston-Salem NC area. Finding a good mechanic can be a difficult task. With a seemingly endless amount of local auto repair centers available, how do you know which one to choose? Do they deliver honest, reliable, high quality automotive service, or will you get “taken for a ride”? Whether you’re new to the area, or simply unhappy with your current service provider. Here are some tips on finding a qualified, reputable mechanic near you.

Online Reviews

In the era of information technology, which we currently live. Online reviews have become a valuable resource in evaluating auto mechanics. Websites and apps like Yelp, Facebook, Google and the Better Business Bureau (bbb.org) are a great place to start any search for a good mechanic. It is important to digest the reviews from these companies with a “grain-of-salt”. At times they can be biased or inaccurate. However, if the majority of a mechanic’s online reviews are trending either positive or negative, generally you at least have some idea what to expect.

Fleet Service Mechanics

The top mechanics in any city are normally found working in fleet auto service and repair. Whether it’s corporate delivery trucks, government vehicles, taxis or any other business-related fleet, the most capable and qualified mechanics in town are usually employed by them. These are the same type of mechanics you want servicing and repairing your vehicle. Do your own research or reach out to a local city employee or delivery driver on the road and have them recommend a good mechanic.

Here at Carolina Mobile Auto, we’ve been providing top-of-the-line fleet automotive service and repair for over 15 years. We know exactly how demanding corporate and private fleet owners can be. When it comes to their vehicles, time is money. They only want the best, that’s why they come to us, because we come to you at Carolina Mobile Auto. Proudly delivering high quality, hassle-free, mobile pickup service in the Winston-Salem area for nearly two decades.

Entry-Level Service

Bringing your car or truck in for routine maintenance is an excellent way to gauge a prospective mechanic’s performance and professionalism. The best time to search for a new mechanic is when your automobile is in fine working order. A smaller, low-risk job like an oil change or tire service is an outstanding way to evaluate a new mechanic. You can get a basic feel of how honest and reliable they operate their business. It is better to be unhappy with your overall auto mechanic experience on a smaller entry-level service job, than on any costly, major engine repairs.

ASE Certification

The National Institute for Automotive Safety Excellence (ASE) is an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to certifying auto mechanics in the United States and Canada. An ASE certification is the benchmark industry standard when it comes to professional automotive technicians. Also, all ASE certify mechanics are formally train in every facet of modern automotive service and repair. While it is possible to come across a good mechanic without an ASE certification, and a bad mechanic with one. Are you really willing to take that risk with your own car or truck?

All of our automotive technicians at Carolina Mobile Auto are ASE certified. So we can personally attest to the high level of work and professionalism associated with ASE certified mechanics. If you’re looking for a friendly, experience, highly train auto technician in the Winston-Salem NC area that you can trust. Contact us or stop in today for an obligation-free visit at Carolina Mobile Auto. We’re conveniently located on South Stratford Road, near Interstate 40.

Warranty

Any reputable auto mechanic will gladly guarantee their vehicle service or repairs for quality assurance. A premium automotive service center will even offer a warranty on all parts and labor included with any car or truck repair. For instance, over at Carolina Mobile Auto we are an officially license AC Delco Professional Service Center. All of our work is carry out using the finest quality OEM-specify auto parts that come backed by a nationwide 24-month/24,000-mile warranty. Also included, as part of our repair service at Carolina Mobile Auto is 12-months of complimentary AC Delco nationwide roadside assistance.

In the end, you have to trust your natural intuitions and use your best judgement when selecting a prospective mechanic. A car in its essence is an extension of our own safety and security. You have to feel comfortable with any mechanic you work with because you are essentially putting your life in their hands. At Carolina Mobile Auto, we take this responsibility very seriously. Lastly, we treat every client and vehicle with the respect and dignity they deserve and go the extra mile to get every job done right. No questions asked.

7 Proven Tips to Maximize Your Vehicle’s Fuel Efficiency

7 Proven Tips to Maximize Your Vehicle’s Fuel Efficiency

Reducing your vehicle’s fuel consumption is one of the best ways to cut costs and put extra cash in your pocket. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, the average American spends more than five-percent of their income on automotive fuel. Not only is maximizing your car or truck’s fuel economy great for your bank account, it’s environmentally friendly as well. Mitigating your automobile’s fuel usage, in turn, limits the amount of harmful carbon emissions released into the environment. Compiled below is a list of seven tips to improve your vehicle’s fuel efficiency and save you money.

1) Routine Maintenance and Service

The first step in maximizing your automobile’s fuel efficiency is making sure it is up-to-date with all routine maintenance and service. Keeping your vehicle in tip-top shape ensures all engine components and fuel systems are functioning at optimal levels. A well-maintained vehicle will not only deliver peak performance, but retain its longevity and resale value as well. In contrast, a poorly maintained car or truck will provide significantly diminished fuel efficiency, along with costly breakdowns and repairs.

Regular oil changes are especially vital in getting the most bang for your buck in terms of automotive fuel economy. Keeping an eye on your vehicle’s spark plugs, air, oil and fuel filters are also key in minimizing fuel consumption. If you have any questions regarding your car or truck’s fuel efficiency contact us or visit us today. Here at Carolina Mobile Auto, our staff of friendly ASE certified auto technicians are here to help.

2.) Tires

Keeping your vehicle’s tires inflated at their proper manufacturer specified level is an easy yet effective way to maximize fuel efficiency. On average, under-inflated tires reduce an automobile’s fuel economy roughly 0.3-percent for every pound-per-square-inch (psi) drop in tire pressure. In addition, under-inflated tires create more friction and drag, resulting in higher rates of fuel consumption. Generally speaking, improperly inflated tires, which include over-inflated tires, are prone to premature wear along with posing a safety risk. Have one of our certified automotive experts at Carolina Mobile Auto examine your automobile’s tires for optimum efficiency, safety and performance.

3.) Drive Slower

High speed aggressive driving drastically increases the amount of fuel your vehicle consumes. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), reducing driving speed from 65-mph to 55-mph can boost fuel efficiency ten to 15-percent. The EPA also estimates overzealous driving behaviors such as hard acceleration, weaving in-and-out of traffic and fast braking can lower fuel efficiency by up-to 20-percent. Not only does fast, aggressive driving require more fuel, it also speeds-up wear-and-tear on your vehicle’s components. Needless-to-say, driving slower heightens your level of automotive safety by significantly diminishing the risk of any accidents.

4.) Reduce Wind Resistance

Another great way to improve your car or truck’s fuel efficiency is by reducing its wind resistance. Roof-mounted racks, lights and storage containers create additional drag that can lower your automobile’s fuel economy rating by up-to 20-percent. The same goes for open windows while driving, regarding fuel consumption. Removing any unused, exterior automotive parts and accessories makes your vehicle lighter and more aerodynamic, equaling better performance and fuel economy.

5.) Limit Air Conditioner Use

One of the most labor-intensive elements of your car or truck is its air conditioning system. Depending on your particular vehicle and environmental conditions, utilizing your automobile’s air conditioning unit can reduce fuel efficiency by 20-percent. When possible, driving with the windows open, along with relying mainly on your automobile’s built-in ventilation system for cooling are highly advisable. If you must turn on the AC, make sure to enable the re-circulate feature for optimum cooling performance and energy efficiency.

6.) Reduce Weight

Your vehicle’s fuel efficiency rating correlates directly to its curb weight. Every 200-pounds of extra weight added to your car or truck equals one less mile per gallon (mpg) of fuel economy. Removing all non-essential items from your automobile such as trash, auto accessories, sporting equipment, strollers, etc. can significantly increase fuel efficiency. Routine car washes are also essential to a good mpg rating. Removing dirt, dust and other grime from your vehicle, lowers its weight considerably, resulting in a boost in fuel efficiency.

7.) Avoid Idling

Last but not least is the energy devouring automotive phenomenon known as idling. Idling is incredibly draining on your vehicle’s fuel resources. When your car or truck is in idle mode, it is essentially providing a zero-mpg fuel economy rating. In essence, restarting your engine requires the same amount of fuel as idling for 30-seconds. Therefore, if you are ever stuck at a railroad crossing or similar situation that forces you to wait in place for over 30-seconds, we recommend turning off your engine.

If you would like to know more about vehicle fuel efficiency or have any other questions or comments, feel free to contact us. Also, if you’d like one of our experienced ASE certified mechanics to examine your automobile for any reason, stop by and see us today.

 

Six Tips to Help Purchase a Quality Used Vehicle

Six Tips to Help Purchase a Quality Used Vehicle

Buying a used car or truck is a form of art. A savvy auto buyer with the right experience and knowledge can easily purchase high quality, reliable used vehicles. Tremendous savings from its true market price no less. Conversely, inexperienced or first-time used car shoppers can easily get taken for a ride and end up with a lemon. Not knowing what to look for when buying a used car can have a devastating effect on your finances. Listed below are six tips to help you successfully purchase a quality used vehicle without getting burned.

1. Test Drive:

One of the most important phases in evaluating a used vehicle is taking it for a test drive. When taking a used car for a spin you should focus on its overall condition while taking mental notes. Is the vehicle running excessively rough? Are there any abnormal sounds, smells, leaks, or smoke being emitted from any of the engine, mechanical or electrical components?

It is essential to check a vehicle’s steering and brake responsiveness during a test drive. Fiddle with as many gauges and knobs as possible, like the radio, air conditioning, lights, etc. to verify they are in working order. Driving over bumps helps you determine the condition of the automobile’s suspension along with its overall ride quality. If possible, take the vehicle out onto the highway and see how it holds up under higher velocity driving conditions.

2. Vehicle History Report:

Obtaining a used car or truck’s vehicle history report from a reputable verification service provider such as Carfax or Autocheck is highly recommended. Researching an automobile’s 17-digit vehicle identification number (VIN) reveals crucial information about its accident and repair history, along with its ownership and registration records.

A reliable vehicle history report lets prospective car buyers know if an automobile has a branded or salvaged title. This occurs when a licensed insurance company officially designates a vehicle as a “total loss” due to a severe accident, flooding, or any other type of catastrophic disaster. Running a car or truck’s vehicle history report also confirms its odometer reading accuracy to ensure no mileage rollback has transpired.

3. Exterior Walk-Around Inspection:

When evaluating a used car or truck’s exterior, stroll around the outside of the vehicle while visually inspecting for any noticeable damage. At first glance, there should not be any fluid leaks or broken components. Here are some specific areas of a used vehicle to examine before purchasing.

Rust and Paint:

Any paint or rust damage will only get worse over time if left unchecked. Corrosion and oxidation not only eat away at your vehicle’s paint and metal parts but at your bank account as well. Minor patches of rust or paint discoloration on a used car isn’t the end of the world. However, large expansive areas of rust or damaged paint can signal big-money repairs in the immediate future.

Frame:

Visually inspecting a car or truck’s frame for any bending, warping or impact is vital when purchasing a used vehicle. Any sign of collision history should be considered a major red flag and can have a ripple effect throughout the vehicle in terms of performance, wear and safety.

Tires:

Looking over a car or truck’s wheels and tires should be a part of every used vehicle’s pre-sale inspection regime. Make sure all wheels are in good condition with no noticeable structural damage. The tires should all be the same make and model with plenty of tread remaining and no cracking on the sidewalls. Uneven tread wear on the tires is a sign of poor balance and alignment. Improperly aligned wheels and tires can signal much more serious mechanical problems, including a malfunctioning steering system, damaged suspension or frame issues.

4. Engine Examination:

When checking under the hood of a used vehicle make sure, the vehicle is not running. Glance over the engine and connected components for any obvious signs of damage. The next step will be examining the motor closely for corrosion or fluid leaks. All automotive fluid levels should be inspected for the proper measurement as well as the correct color and clarity.

5. Interior Cabin Inspection:

When stepping inside a used automobile’s interior cabin, one of the first areas to focus on is its upholstery. Closely examine the vehicle’s interior for any cracks, stains, and tears, as they can be very costly to repair or replace. All used vehicle’s electronic components including its audio system as well as it’s heating and air conditioning unit should be in solid working order.

6. Consult a Trusted Mechanic:

Most reputable automotive service centers offer used car inspection services for a small fee. Before forking over your hard-earned cash for a used vehicle why not have a highly trained mechanic give you their professional opinion on its sales-worthiness.

If you aren’t sure where to go for a used car inspection or are looking for top-of-the-line, honest, reliable service, then bring your used vehicle over to us at Carolina Mobile Auto. Conveniently located in Winston Salem, NC just off Interstate 40 and South Stratford Road, here at Carolina Mobile Auto our ASE certified automotive technicians have happily provided the local community with high quality used auto inspection service for the past 15 years.

Lastly, we look forward to servicing your vehicle here at Carolina Auto Service.  We are located at 1418 South Stratford Road Suite C Winston-Salem NC 27103.

Five Essential Winter Vehicle Preps

Five Essential Winter Vehicle Preps

It’s that magical time of the year again. As winter approaches and temperatures decline, now is the time to undergo the laundry list of winter vehicle preps designed to fortify your car or truck’s cold weather defenses. North Carolina is not particularly known for its harsh winter climate, averaging only six-inches of snow per year. That doesn’t mean you should let you guard down and not actively take measures to protect your automobile.

The past couple of winters, snowfall has surged in the state, breaking records in the process. Winston-Salem alone received over 12.5-inches of snow, in just one day, more than double the annual average. Abnormally high levels of snow in recent winters along with NC’s typical, over 40-inches of rain annually exemplify the need to always be prepared. While Winston-Salem is no Antarctica in terms of freezing weather environments, winter temperature lows do hover in the freezing range.

The Following Five Essential Winter Vehicle Preps Will Likely Save Your Car Or Truck From Harsh Winter Weather Wreaking Havoc On It…

The last thing any motorist wants is to break down on a cold winter night. There’s nothing worse than facing mechanical problems because you didn’t take the time to properly winterize your automobile. That’s why proper winter preparation is crucial in maintaining your vehicle’s lifespan, performance and overall value. Here is a compilation of five winter vehicle preps that will keep your vehicle running longer and stronger this winter and beyond.

Winter Vehicle Preps All Drivers Should Adhere To:

1. Battery

Checking your car or truck’s battery is a good place to start when going through your yearly winter vehicle preps. Colder temperatures increase strain on most powertrain systems due the fact the engine must work harder because of its cooled, thickened oil. The strain on the motor, in turn, intensifies workload on an automobile’s electrical system. What does this mean? A battery that functions perfectly fine in warm-to-mild temperatures may not have enough juice to work in the cold.

Another thing to take into consideration regarding automotive batteries is their CCA, or Cold Cranking Amps rating. A battery’s CCA indicates the amount of amps it can produce at zero-degrees Fahrenheit, for a 30-second interval. The older the battery, the more its CCA rating has deteriorated, leading to sluggish performance or complete failure in cold weather. A battery with a higher CCA rating is not necessarily the solution as they are bigger, heavier and more expensive. Visit us today at Carolina Mobile Auto and have one our certified technicians inspect your vehicle battery’s winter-readiness today

2. Tires

It is always important to have properly inflated tires on your vehicle to ensure maximum traction and overall safety. It’s imperative you actively monitor your car or truck’s tire pressure during the winter since air condenses in cold temperatures. Tires in general, lose about one PSI of air pressure for every ten degrees the temperature drops. Inadequately filled tires can spell disaster, especially on wet, slick or icy roads.

Colder weather causes the rubber components of a tire to harden, even on all-season tires. As the rubber hardens, it loses its traction properties, providing less stability and control while increasing the probability of an accident. Dedicated winter tires, featuring softer rubber aimed at mitigating cold weather hardening would be ideal. However, this is not an option or economically feasible for everyone. We recommend thoroughly inspecting and rotating your tires, replacing or servicing any that are worn or damaged.

3. Brakes

Inspecting and servicing your car or truck’s brakes is key to proper winter vehicle prep. With the increase in rain, snow, sleet and ice during winter months your automobile’s brakes are under increased distress. Moisture along with cold damp conditions leads to rust and corrosion, increasing wear while substantially decreasing performance and safety. Most brakes have a visual indicator, along with an audio signal, like screeching, to inform you it’s time for service. If you aren’t sure what to look for, bring your vehicle in to Carolina Mobile Auto and we’ll gladly examine it for you.

4. Gas

An often-overlooked aspect of winter vehicle prep is the gas tank. During the winter season, moisture collects inside a gas tank, which eventually turns into condensation. Excessive condensed water mixing into a car or truck’s fuel system can lead to an array of costly auto repairs. Condensed water that freezes inside the gas tank exponentially increases damage to the engine. Maintaining your vehicle’s fuel level at a half-tank or more is recommended to mitigate the negative effects of winter weather.

5. Windshield

A properly maintained windshield and related components are essential to winter vehicle prep along with safely navigating challenging weather conditions. Address cracks immediately as cold weather will further stress and expand them! And in doing so, will likely also decrease visibility and safety.

Inspect and replace wiper blades regularly, for obvious reasons. Also, always be certain to top off your vehicle’s windshield wiper fluid. Using the correct fluid is paramount as it has anti-freezing elements, and won’t freeze on you when you need it most.

Routine Car Tune-Ups Are A Great Idea,... If You Want Your Vehicle To Last

Routine Car Tune-Ups Are A Great Idea,… If You Want Your Vehicle To Last

Driving is something that can get you where you need to go on a daily basis. If you want your driving experiences to be as smooth and efficient as possible, then you need to give your vehicle the care and attention that it deserves. You can start by getting routine tune-ups from a trusted and capable professional mechanic. Routine car tune-ups can keep all sorts of inconveniences out of your life. If you want to enjoy being behind the wheel, frequent maintenance sessions are exactly the thing you need. Their perks are numerous and relevant.

Keeping Failures at Bay

Car breakdowns are not fun for anyone. If you want to protect yourself from having to be waiting on the edge of the highway for emergency assistance, then it can help you considerably to make routine tune-ups one of your big maintenance priorities. Tune-ups make vehicles a lot less susceptible to time-consuming, costly, and irritating vehicle failures. Routine car tune-ups are a necessity for all vehicles regardless of how old or how new they may be. If you want to invest in the day-to-day dependability of your car, then tune-ups are the way to go. As well as an excellent way to better avoid woes such as a check engine light and then breaking down completely.

Better Vehicle Value

It isn’t uncommon for people to sell their vehicles. You may want to get your hands on a car that’s a lot more spacious. You may want to get your hands on one that comes with different features. If you get tune-ups for your car, then you may be able to better its overall value. Remember, people tend to gravitate to vehicles that are in tiptop shape. If you get routine tune-ups for your vehicle, the results will be apparent to all. That’s why your odds of completing a sale may become a lot higher. If you want your car to have higher worth, then you should do everything you can to look after it in the appropriate way.

Fewer Fuel Pump Concerns

It can be a headache to realize that your car’s miles per gallon are lacking in any sense. If you come to that realization, however, there is a solution on hand to you. That solution is to go for tune-up sessions. Tune-ups have the ability to better vehicle fuel efficiency dramatically. If you have an air filter that’s excessively soiled, that could lead to a major fuel efficiency drop that you simply do not want or need. If you stay updated on all of your tune-ups, then you can revel in the guarantee of a vehicle that performs wonderfully.

Decreased Emissions

Pollution is a bad thing. If you’re like the majority of human beings in this world, then you want to do anything you can to steer clear of bringing on pollution. If you fail to maintain your car in the correct manner, then it will give off higher amounts of emissions. That can be awful news for the environment. If you get routine tune-ups, then you gain the ability to decrease the nasty emissions that are given off by your car day in and day out.

The Ins and Outs of Vehicle Tune-Ups

A lot of different things go into routine car tune-ups. If you get a tune-up from our automotive center, then you can experience a host of advantages. Our mechanics swap out filters and oil. They update spark plugs in order to strengthen mile efficiency significantly. They swap out fuel filters for the same exact purpose, too. Our team members meticulously and thoroughly assess vehicle ignition systems. If you have a car that’s rather old, then it may depend greatly on ignition timing. It doesn’t matter if you could benefit from a fresh new rotor. It doesn’t matter if you need battery help. Our tune-ups can cover all of the maintenance bases for you.

Are You Due for a Car Tune-Up?

There are a number of things that can tell you that you’re due, or late even for a tune-up. If you notice your dashboard lights switching on, getting a tune-up may be in your best interests. Other big clues are sluggish acceleration, insufficient fuel mileage, odd sounds, a misfiring engine and bizarre trembling motions. If you’re sick and tired of stalling, engine starting woes, weird steering patterns and issues with your brakes, then getting a tune-up may be able to change everything for you substantially. A tune-up can help give your vehicle a brand new lease on life.

Call Us to Set Up an Appointment for a Vehicle Tune-Up

Do you want to get a tune-up for your car in Winston-Salem, North Carolina? Call us at Carolina Mobile Auto Service at any time to set up an appointment with one of our diligent and hard-working mechanics. We can help take the condition of your car to the next tier. We can talk to about all sorts of car specialties that are on the menu.

Water Pumps:  6 Tips Your Vehicle May Soon Need A Water Pump Replacement

Water Pumps:  6 Tips Your Vehicle May Soon Need A Water Pump Replacement

Water Pumps:  6 Tips Your Vehicle May Soon Need A Water Pump Replacement

Water pumps are essential for all vehicle engines to function, plain and simple.  A bad water pump can bring on all sorts of headache-inducing vehicle woes. The water pump promotes the motion of coolant via the radiator, hoses and engine block. The water pump is in charge of keeping temperatures ideal as well. If you want your car to be as dependable and safe as possible, then you should stay on top of any and all water pump needs.

Coolant Leakage

Do you observe any coolant leakage? Pay attention to the anterior part of your vehicle. If you spot a pooling of anything red, green or orange below your car, then odds are strong that coolant is to blame. Coolant leakage is in many cases related to questionable water pumps.

An Overheating Engine

A water pump that experiences a full breakdown can no longer manage coolant circulation just as it did in the past. This pump’s job is to circulate coolant within the car’s engine block. Since it can no longer manage coolant circulation correctly, it triggers the consequence of overheating. It’s critical to take care of any and all overheating matters speedily. If you don’t, they could bring on further destruction in the form of pistons that are burnt or even cylinder heads that are split.

Muck Accumulation

Leaks that are sluggish in nature gradually trigger muck accumulation close to the water pump. It’s vital to be on the lookout for remnants of coolant in the vicinity of the pump. Take note of rust that may surround your pump as well. Rust development is in no way atypical. Leaks that are gradual generally do not trigger speedy breakdowns. They reduce levels of coolant, however, and encourage lubrication to make its way out. This lubrication is essential for safeguarding the components that are within the pump. They’re the components that are constantly in motion.

Radiator Steam

It’s imperative to be attentive to any and all hints of the presence of steam. You may notice your motor giving off some steam. This may take place any time you’re behind the wheel. It may take place any time your vehicle ceases to move as well. The emergence of steam generally is a quick indication of an engine that’s immoderately hot. If you have a water pump that functions in the correct fashion, then your engine will have a temperature that’s unwavering. Don’t ever ignore the presence of steam. If you see any originating in your motor, then you should cease driving without any hesitation. Driving with an engine that’s inordinately hot is extremely hazardous.

A Pulley That Isn’t Firmly in Position

Do you have a pulley for your water pump that isn’t firmly in its appropriate position? Have the pulley repaired immediately. Note that an indication of a loose belt on a pulley may produce a piercing moaning noise.  Many things can trigger belt looseness as well. A pulley that’s all of a sudden not firm in its positioning may bring on a noticeable noise as it moves around over and over again. If this noise intensifies any time you drive swiftly, then it may have something to do with a water pump that’s honestly not in the greatest condition.

Problematic Circulation

A water pump is in charge of coolant travel within the engine and the radiator. Its primary aim is to do away with the accumulation of heat. If you have immoderate heat, then you may encounter issues with twisting, liquefying and the whole nine yards. Drive belts and water pumps often work in conjunction with each other. This involves impellers that encourage the thorough circulation of systems.

Troubleshooting Cars and Water Pumps

If you want to figure out if there’s anything amiss with your water pump, there are a number of strategies out there that can aid you considerably. It may be favorable to exhaustively assess the pulley to your water pump. It may be advantageous to think about any and all bizarre sounds that may be given off by your vehicle. As well it is wise to immediately assess a temperature warning light. If your light switches on, then that may be an indication that your car’s coolant circulation, simply put, is inadequate.

 

Replace Spark Plugs

Replace Spark Plugs As Per Recommendations OR Reap The Repercussions

Alert to any and all persons that get behind the wheel of a gas powered vehicle….. Replace spark plugs as per your manufacturers recommended maintenance schedule. If you don’t it will catch up to you one way or another. Whether it be via a complete breakdown, loss of power while driving, or maybe just simply through more regular fill ups, spark plugs are important. And so is replacing them when the time calls for it.

The vast majority of drivers probably don’t spend much time thinking about their spark plugs. Many may not even have a clue what a spark plug is or the role of the plugs in the vehicle.This is unfortunate given the significance of spark plugs. replacement of their spark plugs, etc. Read on to find out….

Spark plugs, in a nutshell, are vital components of vehicle engines that are in tiptop shape. Spark plugs need to be in A+ shape in order to ensure that engines release power correctly. Spark plug status can influence all sorts of factors beyond engine power. It can even influence engine operations and quality of vehicle fuel economy. People need to go above and beyond to look at their spark plugs regularly. That’s the reason they need to be well-versed in indications of problems with these plugs. People sometimes have to swap their spark plugs out with brand new ones. These plugs are essential components of vehicle ignition systems.

Vehicle Starting Difficulties

Has starting your vehicle out of nowhere become a difficult task? If it has, then odds are high that you need to replace spark plugs as soon as possible. Spark plugs that are tired out can make vehicle starting a total headache. Spark plugs that are tired out can force ignition systems to overexert themselves. They can even lead to battery draining. If you’re dealing with vehicle starting woes, you should consider the state of your spark plugs prior to doing anything else at all.

Significant Fuel Use

If you have spark plugs that are fatigued, then you may have to deal with significant fuel use. Plugs that aren’t in excellent shape have the ability to reduce fuel economy drastically. If you have to go to the gasoline station all of the time all of a sudden, then you should think about the possibility of having to replace your existing spark plugs.

The Absence of Acceleration Might Signify It’s Time 2 Replace Spark Plugs

Do you have an engine that’s oddly slow? If you do, then your spark plugs could be the reason. They could be exhausted. Exhausted spark plugs in many cases lead to the pure absence of acceleration. If you have an engine that’s inexplicably slow, then swapping its spark plugs may just turn the situation around swiftly.

A Check Engine Light That Switches On

Has your check engine light switched on? If it has, then you have no reason in the world to enter panic mode. You may just have to go forward with spark plug replacement. Tired spark plugs can bring on check engine lights that switch on seemingly out of the blue. If you have a spark plug that’s on the track to a breakdown, then your check engine light may make an appearance in your life. This may bring on engine misfiring. This misfiring may lead to the presence of the aforementioned light. If you have an engine light that’s flickering on and off, then you should never rule out the possibility of detrimental misfires. That means that you need to address the matter without any delay whatsoever. You can do so by taking your car in for professional assistance and spark plug replacement.

Aggressive Engine Idling Is A Very Common Indication That You May Need To Replace Spark Plugs

Has aggressive engine idling out of nowhere become the bane of your existence as a vehicle driver and owner? If it has, then that may be an indication that you need to replace spark plugs right away. Engines in most situations don’t make harsh idling sounds. If you’re quiet, you may realize that your engine is producing a sound that’s reminiscent of clanging or banging. If you do, then your existing spark plugs may just be the big, bad culprit.

A Suitable Timeframe: At The Least, Replace Spark Plugs As Per Your Vehicle’s Manufacturer Recommended Maintenance Schedule

It’s always critical for vehicle owners to pay close attention to the instructions that are available to them through manufacturers. Take a careful look at the manual that you received upon purchase of your car. You may come across appropriate timeframes for spark plug replacement. If you do, then you should abide by them without any reluctance. Abiding by the recommendations that are on hand to you from manufacturers can potentially save you from having to deal with a lot of frustration and hassle.

If you don’t want to have to deal with any spark plug-related hassles, then you should make a point to replace them at the least at the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule. It is also highly advisable that you use the exact same, original equipment spark plugs. Although there are many other products that claim to be capable of handling the job of producing spark to ignite the fuel in your car, the best choice is one identical to that of what originally came in your vehicle.

Also consider getting a complete engine tune-up. Changing out old for new spark plugs is a key aspect of a thorough engine tune up. This can do a lot for drivers who want to keep all kinds of irritating troubles at bay.

Contact the Team at Carolina Auto Service

Are you on the lookout for professional assistance with spark plugs anywhere in Winston-Salem, North Carolina? If so, then give Carolina Mobile Auto Service a call. Or swing on by. We can handle with ease spark plug replacement, engine repair and so much more.

We Take Great Care Of Our Customers & Their Rides…

It’s Just What We Do…

(336) 765-8599

 

 

Carolina Auto Service