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  • Mon 8:00AM - 6:00PM
    Tue 8:00AM - 6:00PM
  • Wed 8:00AM - 6:00PM
    Thu 8:00AM - 6:00PM
  • Fri 8:00AM - 6:00PM
    Sat Closed
  • Sun Closed
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HELPFUL INFO

Are You Ready For The Road?

An average of 13,000 Americans are killed between Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day, some as a result of unperformed vehicle maintenance, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Each year, neglected maintenance leads to more than 2,600 deaths, nearly 100,000 disabling injuries and more than $2 billion in lost wages, medical expenses and property damage.

Most mechanical failures can be traced to neglected maintenance. For example, the U. S. Department of Transportation reports the leading cause of mechanical breakdown on our nation's highways is overheating, a condition that is easily avoidable. Other deficiencies that are simple to detect include low antifreeze/coolant, worn or loose drive belts and defective cooling system hoses.

Checking tire pressure and inflating a tire costs nothing, yet an average of 21 percent of cars inspected in check lanes during National Car Care Month have under inflated tires. This can lead to a blowout and a serious accident.

Fuel Saving Tips

Condition Effect MPG Penalty up to
Under inflated tires Increase rolling resistance 1-2mpg
Dirty air filter Causes excessively rich fuel/air mixture 2.0mpg
Worn spark plugs Cause inefficient combustion, wasted fuel 2.0mpg
Worn O2 sensor Unable to detect and adjust air/fuel mixture 3mpg
Dirty or substandard engine oil Increases internal engine friction 0.4mpg
Loose gas cap Allows fuel to evaporate 2.0mpg
Potential loss in fuel economy if all of the above were neglected
11.4mpg

The Car Care Council offers these fuel-saving tips:

  1. Vehicle gas caps -- About 17 percent of the vehicles on the roads have gas caps that are either damaged, loose or are missing altogether, causing 147 million gallons of gas to vaporize every year.
  2. Under inflated tires -- When tires aren't inflated properly it's like driving with the parking brake on and can cost a mile or two per gallon.
  3. Worn spark plugs -- A vehicle can have either four, six or eight spark plugs, which fire as many as 3 million times every 1,000 miles, resulting in a lot of heat and electrical and chemical erosion. A dirty spark plug causes misfiring, which wastes fuel. Spark plugs need to be replaced as recommended by the manufacturer.
  4. Dirty air filters -- An air filter that is clogged with dirt, dust and bugs chokes off the air and creates a "rich" mixture -- too much gas being burned for the amount of air, which wastes gas and causes the engine to lose power. Replacing a clogged air filter can improve gas mileage by as much as 10 percent, saving about 20 cents a gallon.

Fuel-saving driving tips include:

  • Don't be an aggressive driver -- Aggressive driving can lower gas mileage by as much as 33 percent on the highway and 5 percent on city streets, which results in 10 to 66 cents per gallon.
  • Avoid excessive idling -- Sitting idle gets zero miles per gallon. Letting the vehicle warm up for one to two minutes is sufficient.
  • Observe the speed limit -- Gas mileage decreases rapidly at speeds above 60 mph. Each mpg driven over 60 will result in an additional 10 cents per gallon. To maintain a constant speed on the highway, cruise control is recommended.

WIPERS - In the 2001 National Car Care Month vehicle check lanes, 21 percent of participants had wipers that smeared, streaked or chattered across their windshields. Although climates vary, wipers generally need replacing every six months. An easy reminder is to change wiper blades in the spring and fall when you change your clock. Be sure the windshield washers are working properly, too, and keep the reservoir filled with solvent.

LIGHTING - Another important pre-trip check should be exterior and interior lighting. Vehicle check lanes revealed an overall failure rate of over 25 percent in the lighting category. The Car Care Council reminds motorists to check their lights monthly. Other suggestions from the Council include turning on headlights both day and night. This helps define your car's position on the road, and its distance from other drivers. When your vehicle's lighting is defective, other motorists may not get the message that you intend to stop or turn. The end result could be disastrous.

10 Minute Pre-Trip Checkup Can Pay Off

Car Care Council offers three suggestions for a traveler's 10-minute pre-trip checklist:

  • Check all fluids. There are several fluids, in addition to antifreeze, that require attention, including engine oil, power steering, brake and transmission fluids and windshield washer solvent and antifreeze/coolant.
  • Check hoses and belts. A belt that fails can affect the electrical system, air conditioning and power steering, as well as the cooling system. Cooling system hoses may be deteriorating from within, so old hoses and clamps in marginal condition might need to be replaced.
  • Check the tires. Check tire inflation and inspect the tread for uneven wear, indicating the need for wheel alignment. Also look for bulges and bald spots.

"While a last minute checkup is better than no checkup, motorists should plan ahead to allow time to perform necessary maintenance themselves or at the local service facility. A properly maintained vehicle is safer and more dependable and will even save a few dollars at the gas pumps," said the Car Care Council's Executive Director, Rich White.

Not only can a pre-trip inspection help reduce chances of costly and possibly dangerous road trouble, it also provides an opportunity to have repairs made at home, with one's own technician who knows the vehicle. Especially important, it provides peace of mind. While no inspection can guarantee a car's performance, it's comforting to know proper precautions were taken.




What Our Customers Are Saying

There is no other place I would take my vehicles to. Great Lakes Auto Repair has the lowest prices around and some of the most knowledgeable technicians in the industry. The service is top notch and the work is excellent!!!


-Crystal G.

The best place in town to go. Great Lakes Auto Repair has always helped me with my vehicle repairs. They are honest and fair and always helpful in whatever way possible. If you want to go somewhere that will look out for your best interest, this is the place!


-Matt G.

I had a great experience with great Lakes auto! Matt was wonderful, and helpful through the whole process. They diagnosed and repaired my vehicle the same day! I am very pleased with their service, I will definitely returning for future repair needs, as well as recommending them to friends and family. Thanks again Matt!


-Camisha C.

Great service tries to help you save money great friendly people Update stayed an hour just to get the job done and waited until I got there!


-Nicole

I have taken both of my Honda Civics to Great Lakes Auto and have been completely satisfied with their service and free loaner car every time. Matt and his crew are very knowledgeable for repairs on all types of vehicles. They give friendly service as well as recommendations for repairs needed without being hard pressured into the repairs. Keep up the good work Great Lakes Auto Repair.


-Mary K.

Had my car fixed and fixed correctly the first time, competitively priced with outstanding customer service by knowledgeable technicians. Was my first time going there, but now it will be the only place I take my car.


-Doyle H.

If you want an honest and reasonable place, it's here! They are amazing.


-Dina L.

This is a good shop with qualified mechanics and fair prices. As a customer since they first opened, and a former employee, I can guarantee you on any given day this place is far too busy to fix anything on your car that isn't necessary. Their mechanics are certified and very knowledgeable. They often take on jobs no one else wants or can handle. The entire staff is very friendly and willing to go the extra mile. Whether it be giving customers a ride to and from, shopping around for parts, dealing with tight deadlines, staying late, or anything in between, Great Lakes will do what it takes to make your experience as pleasant as possible. They are also very good at prioritizing what needs fixed now and what can wait when on a budget. All of their work is warrantied and they stand behind anything they do. When it comes to prices they are exceptionally competitive. If you find someone to do it cheaper than these guys it's probably not going to come with a receipt, and cash will be the only form of payment excepted. I highly recommend this shop for any of your repair needs.


-Nick W.

My experience with great lakes auto has always been tremendously well.. Great Lakes Auto works with you and your budget..They always let you know what needs to be fixed first if your budget is tight..I love having my 10% discount..I love my free oil change for life.. when they had the free oil change for life program I jumped on it quick.. I save a lot of money with Great Lakes Auto.. John is excellent and Matt is the best.. I love them all..


-Tracie J.

I’ve been brining my 70’s classic and late model vehicles to Great Lakes Auto Repair for several years now. Whether it’s a minor brake repair or something more major and complex, it’s not just a job, rather they truly care about the quality of work and attention to detail. Quotes are accurate, follow-up and communication are very timely. I truly appreciate the time spent taking me through repairs and explaining, in great detail, why and how certain repairs were done. Without a doubt, they have Integrity and trust, at a fair cost.


-Erik W.

I had a great experience with Great Lakes Auto Repair. They are quick but thorough! They are upfront about prices and let you know what needs to be fixed in order of priority. Which I really appreciated. Very nice and professional whenever we spoke, and kept me updated on everything before they performed the work.


-Danielle

These are my go-to people. I will go way out of my way to get here (like 200 miles towed). They are completely honest about everything and have never overcharged anything. They are making a living not a killing. This place is absolutely the best I have ever experienced. They have gone WAY out of their way to ensure that I am taken care of. I can't tell you how comforting it is to have an honest mechanic shop that does great work. I cannot recommend this place enough.


-Thom C.

They were honestly the best and most honest service I have ever had and they took care of all the dealings with the warranty company. The best part is the times were tight it was days before Christmas they made a Huge discount for the labor to give me a break-in the price.they told me exactly what I would need to get the truck back on the road and they also told me were I could save a few bucks they were all around great guys and easy to work with I would recommend them to anyone for your auto needs


-Robert G.
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