Archives 2020

Battery Maintenance

Battery Maintenance

Have you ever been running late for something important and climbed into your car only to find that the engine won’t start? Maybe you have gotten into the driver’s seat to go home after a long day and turned the key to start your car, but all you hear is the unmistakable, low, whining sound of a dead battery. There are few things more disappointing than getting in your car to go somewhere and learning that your car battery has died.

Dead batteries can lead to expensive service and towing charges, not to mention the price of replacing a battery. Keeping up with regular maintenance of your car battery can prolong its life and save you money over time. Willis Auto and Diesel Services in Lubbock, Texas, has some tips for drivers so you can avoid the high costs and frustration associated with dead batteries as well as the dread of being stranded.

  1. Clean the cables. Using household items like baking soda, water, and a nonmetallic brush, you can clean the top of your battery as well as corrosion from the top of your battery as well as the cables. Make sure you disconnect your cables (the negative cable first) and then gently clean the corrosion from the battery.
  2. Check your battery with some frequency to ensure that its terminal connection are clean, tight, and protected from the elements.
  3. Turn off lights and unplug accessories when you are not using your car.
  4. Test your battery to make sure it is charged. If needed, you can recharge your battery. To optimize battery life, Willis Auto and Diesel Services recommends that you test your battery twice a year.
  5. Check the electrolyte levels in your battery. This is a mixture of sulfuric acid and water. Each cell should hold a mixture that is even with the bottom of the well beneath the cap and above the top of the battery plates. Use distilled water as needed.

If you find yourself with a dead car battery, come see us at Willis Auto and Diesel Services in Lubbock, Texas. We will take care of you!

Coolant Maintenance

Coolant Maintenance

Around once a year, you are required to get a state inspection of your vehicle. While it may seem like a nuisance or inconvenience, this is for the maintenance of your vehicle and can help prevent big and expensive repairs down the road. Your car’s coolant system and radiator should be inspected at least once a year and every 12,000 miles, especially if you are on the road a lot. Antifreeze serves to protect your engine from overheating or freezing.

Without it, your engine would eventually melt into a useless block of metal. The issue with coolant is that it is caustic. If it is left alone for too long, it can corrode metal and cause leaks in the radiator. Unlike engine oil, most of the coolant is not removed from the engine in the traditional draining and filling services offered. Adding new coolant to used coolant can cause issues such as clogged coolant passages. In order to avoid expensive engine replacements and repairs, Willis Auto and Diesel Service has some tips so you can maintain the coolant in your car and save money.

First, you should use the correct coolant in your car. You can find what this coolant is by looking in your car’s manual or making a quick search on the Internet. You should also monitor your coolant seasonally. Antifreeze isn’t only used when it is very cold outside — it is flushed through the engine to maintain an even operating temperature every single time you turn the vehicle on.

Checking your vehicle’s owner manual can help you learn when you should replace the coolant in your vehicle. When it is time to replace your car’s coolant, you can do it yourself or visit an auto shop to have it taken care of. As a reminder, antifreeze should not be released into a solid waste stream, storm drain, sewage system, or directly onto the ground. There are regulations on where and how you can dispose of coolant.

Willis Auto and Diesel Service is happy to assist you with car maintenance including your coolant! Avoid a hefty purchase such as a new engine and come see us today!

The Importance of Your Car’s Tires

The Importance of Your Car’s Tires

During West Texas summers, you will commonly see one thing as you drive down the road: shredded tires. In the winter, worn tires can lead to skidding on ice and hydroplaning when it is slick outside. The common denominator is poorly maintained tires on vehicles. Your tires serve to support the load of your vehicle, apply traction and braking forces, absorbing shocks in the road such as potholes, and changing or maintaining the directional travel of your car.

Regular wear and tear or damage to your tires can be catastrophic to your safety as well as that of others on the roadway. Willis Auto and Diesel Services in Lubbock, Texas, has some things you should check regularly on your tires to ensure that you are avoiding dangerous signs of deterioration.

First, your tires’ tread depth is essential to the performance of your tires. In order to navigate wet, hot, or otherwise out-of-the-ordinary road conditions, your tires need tread. When it is wet, the grooves on your vehicle’s tires work to siphon water away from the surface of the road. Worn down tread can lead to not only bad accidents due to hydroplaning or reduced braking distance, but also blowouts that are not only costly but also dangerous. Checking your tire tread depth frequently can help avoid these accidents.

Your tires have a range that their air pressure should stay between. When they are over- or under-inflated, your gas mileage and maneuverability suffer. A tire pressure gauge measures your tire pressure to make sure they are inflated to the correct specifications according to your tire manufacturer. Maintaining good air pressure will improve your gas mileage and the safety of your vehicle.

A regular balancing and rotation of your tires is also necessary for the maintenance of your vehicle. Unbalanced tires can affect the way your vehicle handles and lead to costly repairs. Rotating your tires every 6 months and balancing them annually will help avoid these more costly repairs.

Willis Auto and Diesel Services in Lubbock, Texas, offers tire rotations and tune-ups to ensure that you are safe on the road. Contact or visit us today to keep Texas roadways safe!

Wiper Blades

Wiper Blades

There are likely a lot of things that come to mind before windshield wiper blades when you think of car safety. Most would think of balding tires, bad brakes, or airbags first and then several other things before they thought of wiper blades being an important part of car safety. However, windshield wipers are one of the most important safety features on your car.

Has there ever been a time when you were on the road and got caught in a downpour with nowhere to pull over to get out of the rain? Have you ever had your view of the road obstructed by a mess on your windshield while driving? If so, you know how vital it is that your windshield wipers are working well and are able to provide a clear and unobstructed view of the road for you. Willis Auto & Diesel Service in Lubbock, Texas, knows how important it is to have good wiper blades. We have a few ways you can make sure your wiper blades are in good shape.

First, maintain your wiper blades. Dirt and leaves can become trapped in your blades and scratch your windshield. Doing a quick wipedown of your blades when they are dirty can save you from costly damage down the road. You should also keep an eye on the weather. In freezing temperatures, your wiper blades can become brittle and hardened, which impairs the way your blades perform. Finally, replace your wiper blades when they are damaged, broken, or not performing well. This is roughly every 6 months to one year. They are a simple replacement, and keeping good wiper blades on your car will help keep you safe and keep rain, snow, and other debris out of your line of vision.

Willis Auto & Diesel Service in Lubbock, Texas, values your safety on the road. We offer wiper blades so you can keep your view of the road unobstructed. Come by today and make sure that your windshield wiper blades are still functioning the way they are supposed to!

Why Your Car Thermostat is Important

Why Your Car Thermostat is Important

You may look at your car’s thermometer multiple times a trip to see what the temperature is or to gauge the speed at which a cold front is moving in or out of your area. However, did you know that your car’s thermostat is an integral part of your cooling system? Similar to how the thermostat in your home functions when you set it to a certain temperature, your car’s thermostat helps to cool down your car’s system when it gets too hot.

The air conditioner in your house comes on when it gets above a certain temperature, and your car’s functions in a similar way. Your car engine has an ideal temperature range that it runs between. The thermostat is a valve between the engine and radiator that helps to keep your engine warm enough to run but not so warm that it damages the car.

To keep your car in optimal shape, your thermostat opens and closes to keep your engine between that ideal temperature range. It closes when your car’s engine is cold to trap heat around the engine and warm it up. As the coolant gets warmer, the thermostat opens and allows coolant to flow to the radiator in order to cool it off. In order to keep your engine in top condition, you need to keep your car thermostat in good condition as well.

You can do this by changing your coolant according to schedule so it can protect the thermostat as well as the other vital systems in your vehicle. Regular maintenance helps to ensure that everything is working as it should, and when you get your annual inspection or your oil change, it is an easy check to make sure your coolant and thermostat are functioning properly.

Willis Auto & Diesel Service in Lubbock, Texas, can help keep your car thermostat in top shape. Contact us or visit us today to make sure that you are safe on the road!