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Committed to Helping You Maintain Your Vehicle

At Scott Sherman Auto Care, we are committed to helping you maintain your vehicle in optimum condition and performance. This committment to your vehicle doesn't stop when you leave our facility.

In this section of our website, you will find tips and news that you can use to help you maintain your vehicle and keep you driving safely and comfortably. Be sure to check back as these tips and news will be updated regularly.

 

Staying Cool on Road Trips This Summer

Posted on 05/17/2017

Stay Cool in Summer

The end of the school year is rapidly approaching and both kids and parents alike are looking forward to summer break. I bet many of you have already plotted out some vacation time whether it be camping, taking a road trip or visiting somewhere new. Before you start finalizing all those details and packing your bags, have you taken a moment to consider whether your car is ready for the journey awaiting your family? Warmer weather is almost here and your vehicle could easily become an unhappy place to be if your air conditioning isn’t performing optimally.

Drivers don’t often think about the state of their heating and air conditioning until something has already gone wrong. However, this part of the car needs to be regularly serviced just as much as other vital components. If you are uncertain whether or not your A/C unit is up for the challenge, or if it’s starting operating in a way that isn’t typical, it’s time to bring it in for service.

Here are some things to look for:

Sometimes the air from your vents can smell off – if you are frequently experiencing a mildew-like smell or anything that you can’t quite put your finger on, it may be time to have the A/C looked at.

Did your car’s air conditioning used to come on quickly and feel like a strong winter breeze but now it takes longer to get started and doesn’t get as cold as before? Yup, that means you need to get it serviced.

Your air conditioning should be consistent regardless of whether you are moving or stilling still. If there is an obvious fluctuation, this is a good indicator that something is up and needs to be checked out.

The last thing you are going to want is to be out on the road, in the middle of your vacation, and have your air conditioning go out on you. On the fence about it? Come in for an evaluation and get some peace of mind so that you can enjoy your upcoming summer adventures without worries!


Be Prepared for Summer – Come in for Our May A/C Special Offer: 

Air Conditioning Efficiency Test or Repair

Come in before May 31st to have your air conditioning tested or repaired and receive a mail in rebate for a $25.00 gift card. A/C Test Cost is $27.50 plus tax. http://www.scottshermanautocare.com/ 

What we will do: 
-Test refrigerant levels
-Inspect A/C compressor for leaks and function
-Inspect Compressor clutch for noise and function
-inspect service ports for leakage and dirt
-Inspect A/C belts for cracks or glazing
-Inspect all A/C hoses for leaks, cracks or weak spots/abrasions
-Inspect condenser for debris 
-Test vent temperature 
-Check A/C drain

But hurry, our offer ends May 31, 2017. Some restrictions apply. Most cars and light trucks. Call us for more details at (206) 745-5886.

Spring Cleaning for Your Vehicle

Posted on 05/02/2017

Car Wash

Now that the weather is starting to warm up and even out, the urge to tidy, organize and clean comes upon us all. Amid all the decluttering, garage clearing, and window cleaning – don’t forget to invest some time on your car! Spring cleaning is more than just airing out the house, our vehicles could also benefit from a bit of TLC. 

Car Washing

Whether you pull the car into the driveway or invest in a local car washing service, take some time to do a thorough wash and wax to remove all the winter buildup and grime. Plus, all the salt that builds up on your car in the winter needs to be removed. Not paying attention to those details could lead to rusting or other finish issues. 

Interior

Now that it’s not freezing outside, there is no good excuse to avoid cleaning out the interior of your car. Besides, all the build-up from winter is probably bringing down your mood. A trash bag, vacuum and armor-all will do wonders for both your car AND your attitude on a regular basis. Don’t have the time or inclination to clean out your car? Get it detailed! A decent detail job at least once a year is worth the investment. Planning to do all the spring cleaning yourself? 
Popular Mechanics has a detailed list of items to work on. 

Tires

Your tires made it through winter! Tires are an essential element of drivability. At the very least, check the tire pressure and make sure it’s up to snuff for the months ahead. If during your inspection any of the tires looking to be a bit rough, it could be time to get a new set. 

Windshields

Those spring rains are no joke! Make sure to check your wiper blades for any signs of wear. Also make sure to fill up on windshield wiper fluid while you are focusing on this area. 

Do any of your windshields have small cracks or dents? It’s more cost-affordable to fix these small imperfections (if possible) than it is to go out on summer road trips and tempt fate to make them worse. 

Tune-Up

Once the weather warms up, we tend to be outside more and that includes going on more drives! Whether it’s a road trip, or just a drive out to the country, be certain your vehicle is up for the work. Get the alignment and suspension checked to make sure the harsh commuting in winter hasn’t impacted it in any way. Have a professional do a thorough check under the hood to be certain all the belts, hoses, and other moving parts are still in top condition and ready for the fun ahead. 

Spending some time and energy on your car this Spring will keep you from having to worry about your vehicle’s condition during the next couple of seasons. 

Spring Break Road Trips in the Pacific Northwest

Posted on 03/30/2017

Spring Road trip March blog

For families with children, Spring Break is an annual tradition that provides memories for a lifetime. Our kids are only young once and will soon fly the nest to pursue adulthood. Taking a time out from our busy schedules to spend time with our family, create memories, and have new experiences are essential rites of passage. If you live in the Pacific Northwest area, we’ve compiled a list of Spring Break ideas to consider for your family getaway.

Local Ideas 

Olympic National Park – Located on the Olympic Peninsula in the state of Washington, the Olympic National Park is home to several different ecosystems. From glaciers on Mt. Olympus to rainforests to coastline, this park has quite a lot to see. There are over a million acres to explore so you could go multiple times and have new experiences. 

World Forestry Center - A trip to Portland, Oregon could be well worth the drive, especially if you plan on taking the family to the World Forestry Center Discovery Museum. Located in Portland’s Washington Park, this is the destination for any tree (or future tree) enthusiasts. Check out various forests from around the world in this 20,000 square foot museum. Be sure to try the raft ride! Find out more at worldforestry.org

Cama Beach State Park – Ever wondered what it might be like to go on vacation in the 1930’s? This nostalgic fishing resort is a throwback to earlier days and combines both beach and forest. Learn how boats get built, or simply relax in one of their cedar cabins in between trips to the beach. More at parks.wa.gov/camabeach. Columbia River Gorge – Waterfalls and wildflowers, spring is a beautiful time to visit Columbia River Gorge! To the north are the cliffs of Washington and to the south are the waterfalls and mountains of Oregon. This US National Forest area is great for scenic driving and cycling. Keep an eye out for hidden groves and scenic vistas. The park’s website is https://www.fs.usda.gov/crgnsa

Making Road Trips Family Friendly 

Got a great road trip in mind for Spring Break but worried about the possible fall-out of everyone being stuck in a car together for hours? Here are some family-friendly road trip ideas: 
- Plan Ahead – While there is a sense of excitement about heading out andmaking up the route as you go, you have a limited amount of time before the kids have to be back in school and they probably have a limited amount of patience. Plot your route out before you head out. Have a good idea of where  to stop for gas, meals and potty breaks. Get the kids in on the planning too!
- Prepare for Boredom & Emergencies – Send time (and money) putting together both a boredom activity box and emergency supplies. Don’t let the kids in on what’s in the boredom box as it can be a fun surprise to break stuff out as needed (plus they will feel less inclined to blow through all the options if they don’t know what they are). As for emergency supplies: jumper cables, flashlights, blankets, food and water, batteries, and anything else you feel you could need out there should be brought along, just in case.
- Expect Some Complaining – Bring things to help deal with any potential car sickness problems and build in time for stops to blow off steam. If being in close quarters for too long begins driving everyone crazy, pull over and take a short walk so folks can stretch and get some fresh air.
- Get a Checkup – No one wants to remember the car breaking down when they look back on their spring break vacation. Make sure to bring your car into the shop for a check-up before you head out on your adventures. Tire pressure, coolant level, and oil change are definitely items you want to investigate before you go.

Before you take off on your Spring Break outing, give us a call so we can do quick check up on your car. We will make sure your car is ready for the road so you can focus on relaxing and enjoying your road trip.

Do not Drip and Drive!

Posted on 02/21/2017

Don't drip and drive

Your car is designed to keep you safe as you travel from one point to another. General maintenance is part of the upkeep, and must not be ignored. One of the easiest ways to troubleshoot your vehicle’s repair needs is by checking fluid levels and identifying fluid leaks as early as possible. Scott Sherman Auto Care is partnering with Washington State Department of Ecology’s Don’t Drip and Drive campaign to share information about car fluids and leaks. Some fluid leaks can be deadly, and all have a direct impact on the environment. 

Leaks usually occur at the front (under the engine), near the wheels, or toward the rear/exhaust areas. Here are some quick tips on identifying any fluid leaks in your vehicle: 

Front/Under Engine

Engine Oil - Look for light brown to black fluid that is very greasy and slick. To get the most accurate reading of your oil level, ensure you check your engine oil when the engine is cool. If you find that you’re frequently low on oil, give us a call so we look into it. 

Transmission Fluid - This is only an issue in an automatic transmission. Look for reddish and thin or brown and thick fluid located at the middle and front of the vehicle. Transmission fluid must be checked while the car is running with the transmission in park or neutral. A manual transmission uses gear oil, and that can only be checked from underneath with a car on a lift. Consult with a professional when you find a transmission leak.

Power Steering Fluid - Look for amber, reddish, or light brown and thin fluid at the very front of the vehicle. This is an important part of your vehicle, and must be checked when the car is not running. Losing this necessary hydraulic fluid can cause a sudden decrease in steering function, leading to a safety hazard. Low or leaking power steering fluid must be checked right way!

Coolant (Anti-Freeze) -  Look for yellow or pink fluid. It will be greasy and slimy and located at the front of the vehicle near the radiator. Low coolant causes the engine to overheat. This can ruin your engine and leave you stranded. Never remove your coolant or radiator cap when the engine is hot as the contents are under pressure. Extensive burns have been reported. If you notice a leak or continuous low fluid, contact your repair shop for assistance. 

Near Wheels

Brake Fluid - Look for clear to brown or slightly yellow and slick fluid near your wheels. Any leaks should be checked right away by a professional because even a small leak can be catastrophic. Without brake fluid, your brake system will not work.

Rear/Exhaust

Water - When your air conditioner is running, you’ll often see water dripping under the car on hot days. It’s perfectly normal. If you notice a decline in cool air from your AC, contact a professional to have your cooling system checked. 

Fuel - Gasoline is light gold, but appears colorless on the ground while diesel is mostly clear with a slight bluish tint. If you smell or notice a fuel leak, get to a repair shop right away. A fuel leak can result in a fire. Keep in mind that the gas tank is toward the rear of the vehicle, but fuel leaks can occur where the lines run from the gas tank to the engine.

If you find a leak and aren’t sure what it could be, just give us a call. Don’t drip and drive. Your car, and your environment, will thank you.  

For more tips and videos on car fluids and leaks, visit the Don’t Drip and Drive website at http://fixcarleaks.org.

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