• Essential Winter Maintenance Tips for Your Car

    Driving in Snow

    You probably already know that when winter arrives in Chicago your body feels different than it does in summer, and requires special needs—such as a heavy coat and snow boots. A similar transition happens to vehicles in the Chicago area, which is why it’s important to be mindful of your car’s special needs. If you want your car to be a reliable, safe, and efficient means of transportation this winter, visit a car repair shop for the following winter maintenance services.

    Change the Engine Oil

    Winter cold thickens engine oil, which makes it less effective at cooling and lubricating the engine. If your car has synthetic motor oil or low-viscosity motor oil, you are in good shape. But if you aren’t sure about your oil or have high viscosity oil, get an oil change to prepare for winter.

    Check the Engine Coolant

    Engine coolant doesn’t just keep the engine cool; it also protects against corrosion. Have a professional technician inspect and adjust the ratio of coolant to water in the radiator to protect and winterize the engine.

    Inspect the Battery

    Ask your mechanic to inspect the battery, terminals, cables, and fluid to make sure everything is clean and in working condition. Have the battery tested, and replace it if it cannot hold a charge to avoid being stranded in the winter cold with a dead battery.

    Consider Snow Tires

    Winter tires, also known as snow tires, are ideal for winter driving in the Chicago area. Compared with all-season tires, snow tires will improve your car’s safety and performance by decreasing stopping distances and enhancing handling in the snow and ice.  

    Replace the Wipers

    Winter-grade windshield wipers are essential in Chicago because they help break up snow and ice on the windshield. While you’re at the auto repair shop, have the windshield wiper fluid filled up, too.

    In the Chicago area come to B & L Automotive Repairs if you’ve been in a collision. Visit our website to learn about the collision services we offer, and call us at (773) 463-1622 for more information

  • Avoid Collisions in Chicago this winter by Properly Maintaining your Vehicle

    In the winter, collisions in Chicago often increase due to the unsafe weather conditions and due to the fact that vehicles haven’t been properly maintained. Winter car maintenance is absolutely essential in the Chicago area if you want to ensure that your vehicle is ready for the road. An improperly maintained car will experience reduced traction and increased stopping distances, which can mean the difference between avoiding an accident and getting into one . Ensure your safety and the longevity of your car this winter by applying the essential winter maintenance tips in the video clip.

    For every 10 degrees of temperature change, your vehicle’s tires lose approximately 2 pounds of air pressure. Driving on under-inflated tires will undermine your vehicle’s handling abilities and traction, and will greatly decrease the overall life of the tires. Check the tire pressure once per month to prevent improper inflation. For optimal safety and vehicle longevity, have the brakes checked and get your engine oil replaced with fully synthetic motor oil. Watch the video for more winter maintenance tips.

    B & L Automotive Repairs of Chicago handles all types of car maintenance, repair, and collision repair services. If you have any questions, speak with a car specialist today by calling (773) 463-1622. Visit our website for more information.

  • The Driver’s Guide to Safety On the Road [INFOGRAPHIC]

    Driving is a routine part of many people’s daily lives, but it’s also a privilege that comes with a great deal of responsibility. When you get behind the wheel, you are responsible for your own safety as well as the safety of your passengers and other people on the road. Stay alert when you are driving, and never drive if you have been drinking alcohol. Buckle your seat belt at all times, and encourage your passengers to do the same. If a collision should occur, stay calm and check for injuries first. Never admit fault in a collision, and be sure you have an insurance-approved collision repair shop that you trust in case of an accident. Check out this infographic from the Chicago collision repair experts at B & L Automotive Repairs, Inc. to learn tips for staying safe on the road and for dealing with an accident. Please share with your friends and family. 

    The-Drivers-Guide-to-Safety-On-the-Road-Infographic-01

  • Signs That Your Brakes May Need Replacement

    Brake disk

    As you can imagine, the braking system is one of a car’s most important safety features. Unfortunately, brakes are not built to last for the life of the car; many parts wear down or become damaged and need to be replaced. And when your brakes go out you could be involved in a traumatic collision. If you ever notice any of these signs, it’s likely that your brakes need to be replaced:

    Clearly Worn Brake Pads

    Perform a visual brake inspection by looking in between the wheel spokes. You will see the outside pad pressed onto a metal rotor. You should see at least 1/4 inch of pad; if you see what could be less than that, visit a car repair shop right away.

    Strange Noises

    Modern braking systems come with a mechanism that produces a high-pitched screeching noise during braking if the brake pads need to be replaced. If you hear a grinding or growling noise, this means the pads are worn out and the rotors are at risk of being damaged. Any unusual noise that occurs during braking is a red flag that it’s time to visit the car repair shop.

    Less Responsive Braking

    Does the brake pedal sink to the floor before the car actually begins braking? This usually means that there is a leak in the braking system, a problem that is usually accompanied by a puddle of fluid under the car. If you experience this or a less-responsive brake pedal, schedule a brake inspection immediately.

    Pulling to One Side during Braking

    Cars that pull to one side during braking likely have unevenly worn brake linings or contaminated brake fluid. This can be fixed at an auto repair shop with a brake adjustment or a brake fluid flush.

    If you’ve experienced a collision because your brakes went out, please contact B & L Automotive Repairs at (773) 463-1622. You can find out more about our experience and professionalism by visiting our website today.