Do You Know When Your Brakes Need a Little TLC?

We cant stress enough the importance of routine brake inspections! Executive director of Car Car Council, Rich White, stated “When it comes to vehicle safety, the brake system is at the top of the list, so have your brakes checked by an auto service professional at least once a year. Knowing the key warning signs that your brakes may need maintenance will go a long way toward keeping you and others safe on the road.”

But how do you know when you should get your brakes checked? Below, we have listed seven signs that your brakes need to be inspected.

Noise: screeching, grinding or clicking noises when applying the brakes.7 signs to inspect brakes

Pulling: vehicle pulls to one side while braking.

Low Pedal: brake pedal nearly touches the floor before engaging.

Hard Pedal: must apply extreme pressure to the pedal before brakes engage.

Grabbing: brakes grab at the slightest touch to the pedal.

Vibration: brake pedal vibrates or pulses, even under normal braking conditions.

Light: brake light is illuminated on your vehicle’s dashboard.

If you have encountered any of these signs, schedule your appointment here, and our technicians will switch your breaks and get you back on the road!

Five DIY Car Maintenance for the Upcoming Fall Season

Fall is here, which means shorter days and cooler temperatures. We always recommend bringing your vehicle into one of our Service Centers to ensure it’s running in top shape this time of year, but to help prepare your car for the demands of the coming driving season, we have five, simple do-it yourself car maintenance tips for a smoother and safer drive around Pittsburgh.

  1. Generally, wiper blades are used more frequently in the fall and winter. They take a lot more abuse from road grime and windshield-washer solvent, so it’s best to have your wiper blades replaced annually every fall. Fortunately, replacing wiper blades as part of car maintenance is very easy and requires no tools. They cost from $10 to $20. Note: some cars will require same-sized blades for the driver and passenger sides, while others will require a longer blade for the driver-side wiper.winshield wipers, DIY car maintenance, car care tips, service tips, car service tips
  1. Check your spare tire to ensure that it is properly inflated. The typical space-saver spare tire found in some cars must be inflated to the inflation pressure listed on the side of the tire. A tire pressure gauge costs $7 to $20. Tire pressure drops one PSI, or pound per square inch, for every 10-degree drop in temperature, according to AAA, so check your tires on a weekly basis. The proper inflation pressure will generally be listed in your vehicle’s owner manual and/or noted on a sticker located on the driver’s doorjamb.
  1. In colder seasons, windshield-washer fluid needs to be replaced with a solvent that is suited for use in cold weather. The washer fluid costs $2 to $4 per gallon, depending on the brand and whether it has antifreeze mixed in. Checking the brake-fluid reservoir is also a good idea. If the level is low, top it off with the appropriate type of brake fluid ($3.50 to $17 per container, depending on the type).
  1. At a minimum, engine air filters ($11.50 to $53 per filter, depending on brand) should be replaced twice per year as part of car maintenance. So, if you haven’t done so already, replacing your car’s air filter is a good idea. When an air filter reaches the point where it causes enough of a pressure drop to restrict airflow, the car’s fuel economy, performance and emissions begin to deteriorate, getting progressively worse until the dirty filter is replaced. Car air filters, DIY car maintenance, car care tips, service tips, car service tips
  1. Many electrical issues and ignition problems stem from loose or corroded battery connections. If you notice corrosion on the posts or cable connectors, use an appropriate brush ($4 per brush.) This is a very inexpensive, yet handy tool that you can get at any auto parts store. And clean both (posts) completely, and then reconnect everything securely. As part of regular car maintenance, and for safety, make sure all of the car’s lights are working; it’s important for you to see, as well as be seen, during autumn’s longer and darker nights. Headlight bulbs range in price from $14 to $27 for a single bulb to $25 to $50 for a dual pack.

Jim Shorkey Cares: A quick service tip

Wintertime can be rough, and venturing outside can be unreasonably painful. Therefore, most people neglect their vehicle until the sun triumphantly breaks through the clouds and flowers harmoniously burst through the soil. As this time of the year draws nearer and nearer, we would like to bring you a quick service tip that will have your vehicle driving like a beacon of spring in no time.

Cabin Air Filters. The cabin air filter helps remove allergens and contaminants, as well as trap pollen, bacteria, dust, and exhaust gases that may find their way into a vehicle’s air conditioning and heating and ventilation systems. The filter also prevents leaves, bugs, and other debris from entering these systems.

A dirty or clogged cabin air filter can cause musty odors in the vehicle and can cause contaminants to become so concentrated in the cabin that passengers actually breathe in more fumes and particles when riding in the car compared to walking down the street. A restricted cabin air filter can also impair airflow in the HVAC system, possibly causing interior heating and cooling problems—important for staying comfortable during the excessively hot summer months. Over time, the heater and air conditioner may also become damaged by corrosion.

It’s generally recommended these filters should be changed every 12,000 to 15,000 miles, or per the owner’s manual. Check out our Kia Service Manager, Andy White, below as he explains the importance of changing cabin air filters and compares a clean air filter with a dirty counterpart.