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Archive for September 2014

Check Engine Light Diagnosis at L and M Motors Inc

Posted October 1, 2014 12:00 PM

Hello Anchorage . Have you ever had your Check Engine light come on? Did you panic? Or just scowl and ignore it? What should you do? Pull to the side of the road and call a tow truck? Or just keep driving? What does that little light really mean for Anchorage drivers?

First of all, the Check Engine or Service Engine light does indicate that something is wrong. That's why it is called a warning light. But the something that is wrong might be a loose gas cap, or it might be serious vehicle engine trouble. That's why Anchorage residents often don't know how to respond to it.

The Check Engine light has two modes: it flashes or it stays on. A flashing light is serious. You need to get your vehicle to L and M Motors Inc in Anchorage ASAP. No, you don't need to call a tow truck, but, yes, you can't wait to get your car serviced. If your Check Engine light is on and flashing, you should not tow trailers, haul heavy loads or drive at AK freeway speeds. Any of these could lead to serious damage that could result in repair bills for Anchorage drivers who ignore it.

steady Check Engine light is less serious, but that doesn't mean it can be ignored. You should plan to get your vehicle inspected at your local Anchorage automotive service center at the first realistic opportunity. Not the first convenient opportunity, but the first realistic one.

Modern automobiles have a computer in the engine that monitors and controls many of the engine functions. When the computer senses something wrong, it first tries to fix the problem itself by adjusting the vehicle engine. If the problem persists, the computer signals the Check Engine light to come on.

This process stores a trouble code inside the vehicle engine's computer. Your service advisor at L and M Motors Inc scans the computer and reads the code. This does not tell the technician exactly what is wrong with the car, but it gives him a good idea as to where to start looking.

Of course, the best thing to do is to keep that pesky Check Engine light from coming on in the first place. Good vehicle care and routine preventive maintenance go a long way to keeping your vehicle out of your Anchorage auto repair shop. But, if that light does come on, be smart. Take care of the problem early, and take care of it professionally.

L and M Motors Inc
400 W 53rd Ave
Anchorage, AK 99518
907-563-4994

 



Cool Breeze: Air Conditioning Service at L and M Motors Inc in Anchorage

Posted September 25, 2014 12:00 PM


Most AK auto owners know that their vehicles need regular preventive maintenance like changing the oil and filters, rotating the tires and refilling the washer fluid. But did you know that your air conditioning system needs routine maintenance as well? Taking care of your air conditioning system can extend its life and prevent costly repair bills.

Why is it important for Anchorage area drivers to get routine maintenance on their air conditioning system? First, the refrigerant contains an added lubricant. As the refrigerant circulates through the air conditioning system, its parts are lubricated. This constant lubrication keeps the parts functioning well. But over time, this lubricant is used up, and without it, the parts will eventually seize up and fail.

Anchorage folks should understand, however, that the air conditioner will continue to pump out cool air even without the lubricant, so you won't know the system is sick until it actually dies. So good vehicle care includes regularly checking the refrigerant and lubricant in your vehicle air conditioning system and replacing it if needed.

The second reason your air conditioning system needs preventive maintenance is that air and water can get into the system. Air, water and the contaminants they contain will reduce the efficiency of the air conditioning system and can cause corrosion of the system's parts. Keeping the air conditioning system clean is a practice that will extend its life and keep you from losing your cool on hot Anchorage days.

How often should you get a routine car air conditioner inspection? It varies from vehicle to vehicle. Check your owner's manual for the vehicle manufacturer's recommendation.

Here's a good piece of advice from L and M Motors Inc for AK vehicle owners that will extend the life of their air conditioning systems: You should run your air conditioner in the winter every once in a while. This circulates the refrigerant, which lubricates the seals. That way, they won't dry out during cold Anchorage weather.

L and M Motors Inc
400 W 53rd Ave
Anchorage, AK 99518
907-563-4994



A Cool and Smooth Transmission in Anchorage

Posted September 17, 2014 12:00 PM

When it comes to preventive maintenance on our vehicles, most of us Anchorage drivers remember to get our oil changed. But services that occur at longer intervals — like transmission service — sometimes get overlooked. Yet transmission service is part of car care. A poorly maintained transmission will fail and lead to repairs.

The transmission transfers power from the engine to the drive wheels. When it's clean and well-lubricated, it gives maximum fuel efficiency. But when it gets dirty or worn down, your transmission will suffer. Your transmission relies on transmission fluid to keep everything running well.

This is why the transmission fluid must be changed periodically. Your owner's manual will give you a recommended time schedule for this service. Or, you can ask your friendly and knowledgeable L and M Motors Inc service advisor. Generally, the interval is around 35,000 miles (55,000 km) or every two years. But the interval for your vehicle may be shorter or longer.

At L and M Motors Inc in Anchorage, transmission fluid can usually be changed while you wait and is simple and not particularly expensive. Compared to the cost of transmission repairs or a new transmission, it's downright cheap! So take some good auto advice from the team at L and M Motors Inc and take care of your transmission. It will pay you back in a longer, smoother ride.

L and M Motors Inc
400 W 53rd Ave
Anchorage, AK 99518
907-563-4994



Cool Running in Anchorage

Posted September 11, 2014 12:00 PM

Unless you live in Death Valley, you really don't hear much any more about cars overheating. That's because cooling systems in vehicles have been much improved. That doesn't mean you can't overheat your vehicle engine, though. Without proper preventive maintenance, you could still find yourself on the side of the road in Anchorage waiting for your vehicle engine to cool down.

When you service your cooling system at L and M Motors Inc, your technician will check the condition of the coolant. It can become corrosive over time, which can damage a radiator — leading to an overheated engine. Changing the coolant periodically is good vehicle care. Your vehicle owner's manual can give you guidelines on how often to replace it.

If your engine overheated, your friendly and knowledgeable service advisor will also check your coolant system for leaks. Check the vehicle radiator for cracks and the radiator hoses for leaks. He'll also check your water pump. They don't need to be replaced on a regular schedule, but they do need checked regularly. They can and do wear out.

The water pump is a critical component of your vehicle cooling system. It pumps the coolant to keep it circulating through the engine. The coolant is cooled in the radiator, then it travels through the engine, where it absorbs heat, then it returns to the radiator, where it releases the heat. And so on. But a water pump is something of a misnomer. The fluid pumped through your vehicle cooling system is not just water. It also contains coolant, which is actually poisonous. You should never consider your radiator as an emergency water supply.

There are many types of coolant. It varies from vehicle to vehicle, and using the wrong kind could damage your engine. Your service advisor will know which kind your vehicle's manufacturer recommends. The team of automotive professionals at L and M Motors Inc is always a good source for auto advice. We've been providing quality automotive services at our convenient location in Anchorage for years.

At L and M Motors Inc, we help you keep your cool which will keep you in the driving lane.

L and M Motors Inc
400 W 53rd Ave
Anchorage, AK 99518
907-563-4994



Shake It up in Anchorage!: Why Wheel Balancing

Posted September 4, 2014 12:00 PM

Our vehicles are not massage chairs. While we may enjoy a good vibration in an overstuffed recliner, we generally want as smooth a ride as possible in our vehicles. One way to achieve this is to keep a vehicle's wheels in balance.

When a tire is mounted onto a wheel, it is usually out of balance. This means that as the wheel spins, there is a slight wobble to the path of the tire. For best handling performance and safety on the road, Anchorage drivers want to minimize this wobble as much as possible. So we balance our tires. To balance a tire, your technician at L and M Motors Inc spins it on a machine or drum to determine where it is off-balance. He then attaches weights that counter-balance the uneven weight. Most people in Anchorage are surprised at how much balancing improves the smoothness of their ride.

High-quality tires generally hold their balance well. But over time, wear and tear take their toll and tires can become unbalanced. Anchorage drivers can tell when a front tire is unbalanced if they feel a vibration in the steering wheel. If a back tire is unbalanced, you'll feel a vibration in your seat. You may not notice these vibrations until they get fairly serious — or until someone else drives your vehicle — because they usually develop slowly. If a vibration starts abruptly, it usually means you've lost a balancing weight.

The average tire rotates at about 850 revolutions per minute at 60 mph/97 kmh. When a tire is out of balance, it actually hops down the road, rather than rolling. So at 60 mph/97 kph, it is slamming into the pavement 14 times a second. That's what creates the vibration. When tires are out of balance, they wear out more quickly. The lack of balance also causes extra wear on shocks, struts, steering components and suspension parts.

Getting a balance job at L and M Motors Inc in Anchorage can prevent repair bills and even an accident. It will improve the safety of your vehicle as well as its handling performance. When you change your rims or get a flat repaired at L and M Motors Inc, you'll need to get your tires balanced as well. When you rotate your tires, you may want to have them balanced, too.

Some Anchorage vehicle owners, however, only balance their wheels every other rotation. You can check your owner's manual to see what is recommended for your vehicle. Balancing your tires is part of preventive maintenance. It keeps your vehicle in good repair and prevents damage to many of its components. So practice good vehicle care and make it a point to keep your tires balanced. It's quality auto advice from L and M Motors Inc. Massage chairs may vibrate away our worries, but unbalanced tires will just rattle Anchorage drivers' nerves.

L and M Motors Inc
400 W 53rd Ave
Anchorage, AK 99518
907-563-4994

 



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