Dearholt AutoCare

7201 Wyoming NE
Albuquerque, NM 87109

505.857.0868

Have You Checked Your Headlights?

Posted on August 06,15 by truck2

Like everything on the Corrales automotive market, there have been great strides in headlight technology in recent years. NM auto owners can be safer at night because of it. Good headlights improve visibility on Corrales freeways, enabling you to see farther. They also improve your peripheral vision, helping you to see the sides more clearly. The more you can see, the quicker you can react to road conditions. This is important because nearly half of traffic fatalities take place at night. And as Albuquerque’s population ages, everything that helps older eyes is welcome.

Most new pickups sold in Corrales come with halogen headlamps. A decade ago, halogens were exotic and expensive. Now that they are standard equipment, the price has come way down. Many luxury cars are equipped with high intensity discharge, or HID, headlamps. You have probably seen them on Albuquerque interstates, they’re very bright and have a bluish tint.

From behind the wheel, there is no doubt that HID headlamps are the best thing going. However, many Albuquerque motorists complain about HID lights in oncoming traffic or when they approach from behind. In fact, when the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration called for public comment, they received a record number of complaints about HIDs. This has lead to several studies – your tax dollars at work. Some expect future regulation of HID lamps.

All halogen headlamps dim over time. Your personable Dearholt Auto Care service advisor recommends that they be changed out once a year. AutoNetTV suggests you replace your headlamps in the fall at the end of Daylight Savings Time. It’s easy to remember – when you change your clock, change your headlamps. Remember to replace all headlamps at the same time – then all your lights will be equally bright. You will appreciate it during those long NM winter nights.

If you have an older pickup with old-school headlamps, you might be able to get a halogen replacement. You’ll be amazed at the difference this upgrade will make.

In addition to regular halogen lamps, Albuquerque motorists can upgrade to premium lamps that filter some of the yellow light, making a bright white light that’s more like natural sunlight. This light’s easier on the eyes and should improve reaction time.

Now, you may be able to step up to HID headlamps, depending on the kind of car you drive around the Corrales area. These lamps should last the life of your car, but cost several hundred dollars a pair. If you want other Albuquerque auto owners to think you’re running HID lamps, you can even buy regular halogens that have a bluish tint. Does she or doesn’t she? Only her Dearholt Auto Care service professional knows for sure.

Over time, plastic headlight covers can get cloudy or yellowed. In fact, AAA reports that nine out of ten headlights are dirty or yellowed, greatly reducing vision. In addition to helping you replace your headlamps, many service centers such as Dearholt Auto Care in Albuquerque, NM can restore headlight covers. Headlights can be restored at a fraction of the cost of replacing.

POP! You Are Stranded…

Posted on December 30,14 by dearholtauto

POP! That’s how quickly one of your vehicle’s belts can fail and leave you stranded. CHA-CHING! That’s how quickly you can instantly save $25 on a new NAPA belt that could have prevented the POP in the first place. So visit Dearholt AutoCare, your local NAPA AutoCare Center today for an inspection of your belts and hoses. If needed, we’ll install a NAPA Premium Micro V-Belt and DriveAlign Tensioner – and you’ll save $25 instantly! Start 2015 off right with a belts and hoses inspection at Dearholt AutoCare! Offer good through February 28,2015, for most cars, light trucks and SUVs.

Jan_Feb_Belts_Tensioners_2015_Email

Timing Belt

Posted on December 09,14 by truck2

Ever heard the sad tale of a staggeringly costly repair bill from a broken timing belt? Bad news. Let’s Albuquerque motorists take a lesson from their woes and remember to think about our critical timing belt.

First, let’s review what a timing belt does. The top part of the engine, over the cylinders is called the cylinder head. The head contains the valves. There’s at least one valve that lets the fresh air into the cylinder. This air, mixed with fuel, burns to create power. Then another valve or two open to allow the exhaust out of the engine. Each cylinder has 2 to 4 valves – that’s 12 to 24 valves for a V-6, up to 32 values on a V-8. The opening and closing of the valves is done by a camshaft. The timing belt uses the rotation of the engine to drive the camshaft which opens and close the valves. It’s called a timing belt because it has to be adjusted to rotate the camshaft to keep proper time with the engine so that everything’s in sync.

The timing belt is a toothed rubber belt . But some cars use a timing chain or timing gears instead of a belt. Timing chains and gears are much more durable, but vehicle manufacturers are using belts more because they are quieter – and cheaper. If you have a small or mid-sized passenger car, crossover or mini-van, chances are you have a timing belt.

Unfortunately, timing belts fail without any warning. That shuts Albuquerque drivers down right away. Your Dearholt Auto Care service specialist can inspect your timing belt and look for cracks and looseness. But getting to the belt to take a look can be almost as much work as changing it on some cars. That’s why automobile manufacturers recommend replacing the belt from time to time. For most vehicles it’s from 60,000 to 90,000 miles or 95,000 to a 145,000 kilometers. If your owners’ manual doesn’t specify an interval ask your personable Dearholt Auto Care service advisor.

One AutoNetTV producer has had two timing belts fail. The first was while he was waiting at a stop light – that expensive repair cost several thousand dollars. The second was while driving on the highway – that one cost more than twice as much. Both had the cars out in the shop for three weeks. His cars had what we call “interference engines”, meaning that the valves and pistons are very close to each other. If the timing belt slips even one notch, the pistons will slam into the open valves. That’s why our friend’s highway failure was so much more expensive – his engine was traveling so fast that the valves were smashed and they chewed up the cylinder head.

A non-interference engine will just shut down if the timing belt breaks. You’re stranded, but the engine doesn’t suffer permanent damage. In both cases, our hapless friend was just a couple oil changes past the recommended interval for changing the timing belt. This is one of those things that Albuquerque auto owners just cannot put off. Now replacing a timing belt is not cheap – but repairs for a broken belt can be far more costly.

The team at Dearholt Auto Care recommends Albuquerque motorists check their owners’ manual ASAP – especially if you have more than a 60,000 miles or 95,000 kilometers. You may need to get that belt replaced right away. And on many cars, the timing belt drives the water pump. So, it may be a good idea to replace the water pump while you’re at it because 90% of the work required for the new pump is already done with the belt change. Doing both at the same time saves you a lot of income because as they say, “timing’s everything”.

PCV Valve Service At Dearholt Auto Care In Albuquerque

Posted on November 27,14 by truck2

Today, we are talking about your PCV valve. The PCV Valve is a little, inexpensive part that does an essential job for Albuquerque motorists. PCV stands for Positive Crankcase Ventilation.

The crankcase is the bottom area of the engine that holds the oil. When the pickup engine’s running, fuel is burned to generate power. Most of the exhaust from combustion goes out through the exhaust system. But some exhaust blows by the pistons and goes into the lower engine, or crankcase.

These hot gases are about seventy percent unburned fuel.
PCV Valve Service At Dearholt Auto Care In AlbuquerqueThis can dilute and contaminate the oil, leading to damaging engine oil sludge. It can also cause pickup engine corrosion, something we see occasionally at Dearholt Auto Care. At high speeds on Albuquerque freeways, the pressure can build up to the point that gaskets and seals start to leak.

Back in the old days, auto manufacturers simply installed a hose that vented these gases out into the atmosphere. But starting in the 1964 model year, environmental protection laws required that these gases be recycled back into the air intake system to be mixed with fuel and burned in the pickup’s engine.

This is much better for air quality and improves MPG also. (Budget-conscious Albuquerque auto owners take note!) The little valve that performs this important function is the PCV valve. The PCV valve lets harmful gases out of the engine, but won’t let anything back in. Over time, the vented gases will gum up the PCV valve and it won’t work well. That can lead to all of the problems I’ve already described, oil leaks, excessive oil consumption and decreased fuel efficiency.

Fortunately, it’s very easy to test the PCV Valve at Dearholt Auto Care in Albuquerque and quick and inexpensive to replace. Even so, it’s often overlooked because many Albuquerque car owners don’t know about it. Check your pickup owner’s manual or ask your Dearholt Auto Care service advisor. If this is the first time you’ve heard of a PCV valve, you might be in line for a replacement.

There’s another aspect to the PCV system. In order for the valve to work correctly, it needs a little clean air to come in. This is done through a breather tube that gets some filtered air from the engine air filter. Now some vehicles have a small separate air filter for the breather tube called the breather element. That’ll need to be replaced at Dearholt Auto Care when it gets dirty.

Please ask your personable Albuquerque service advisor about your PCV valve. For the price of a couple of burger combo meals in Albuquerque, you can avoid some very costly engine repairs.

Serpentine Belt Service At Dearholt Auto Care In Albuquerque

Posted on March 13,14 by truck2

Don’t you hate it when you hear that squeal from under the hood when you’re zipping down a busy Albuquerque freeway? It usually means there is a problem with the serpentine belt. The serpentine belt powers a lot of engine accessories. It runs the alternator – which charges the battery; the water pump – which cools the engine; the air conditioning and the power steering pump. All pretty vital parts. It is called a serpentine belt because it snakes around a bunch of engine components.

Serpentine belts are amazingly tough. They can last for years and go for tens of thousands of miles. Like all key moving parts, however, they eventually wear out. If your belt breaks while you are driving around Albuquerque, everything will come to a halt within minutes. You need to stop the pickup immediately or it will overheat, potentially causing pricey engine damage. You can be sure that it won’t happen at a convenient time or place. (As if there was a convenient time or place!) You might even need to get your pickup towed to Dearholt Auto Care. It’s no wonder that auto makers recommend a belt replacement on schedule. It’s one of those “have-to’s.”

Albuquerque car owners who hear a squeal when accelerating or a slow, slapping sound at idle, should have their serpentine belt looked at. Your service professional at Dearholt Auto Care in Albuquerque will visually inspect your belt to see if it needs to be changed sooner than scheduled. If the belt has more than three or four cracks an inch, has deep cracks that penetrate half the depth of the belt, is frayed, is missing pieces or has a shiny glazed look, it needs to be replaced regardless of age or mileage.

Serpentine belt replacement is relatively inexpensive, especially compared with the cost and inconvenience of being stranded or getting a disabled pickup back to Dearholt Auto Care for essential repairs.

You’re mom was right: an ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure.

Dearholt Auto Care
7201 Wyoming NE
Albuquerque, NM 87109
505.857.0868

Timing Belt Replacement in Albuquerque

Posted on December 04,13 by truck2

Today we want to talk about timing belts. They’re something that many Albuquerque drivers don’t know much about and yet your vehicle won’t run if it’s broken – and it could cause many thousands of dollars damage if it does break. A broken timing belt is usually a tale of woe. Even though timing belt replacement is scheduled in the owner’s manual, it’s not the kind of thing that most Corrales car owners remember because it’s not well understood.

Let’s review what a timing belt does. As you know, the engine’s power is generated in the cylinders. A piston rides up and down in the cylinder. During the first down stroke, an intake valve at the top of the cylinder opens and air and fuel is drawn into the cylinder. Then the piston returns to the top, compressing the fuel and air mix. At the top, the spark plug fires, igniting the fuel pushing the piston down in the power stroke. As the piston once again returns up in the final stroke of the cycle, an exhaust valve opens at the top of the cylinder and the exhaust is pushed out. The timing belt is what coordinates the opening and closing of the intake and exhaust valves. It’s called a timing belt because the valves have to open and close at just the right time.

Now, not all Albuquerque and Kirtland Afb vehicles have timing belts. Some have timing chains. Like the name implies, they use a chain rather than a belt to perform the function. It used to be that most engines used timing chains, which are extremely durable. Manufacturers started using belts rather than chains to save money in the manufacturing process. So now we’re left with a component that can break. They sort of shifted the problem to us. There are two broad categories of engine design: interference and non-interference. If the timing belt on a non-interference engine breaks, the engine simply stops running. That could be very dangerous depending on where you are at the time, but it causes no internal engine damage.

Interference engines, on the other hand, will get real messed up when the timing belt breaks, because the valves will actually fall down into the path of the pistons. Things get chewed up when that happens and it’ll cost thousands to repair the engine.

So, what are the warning signs? Unfortunately, there really aren’t any. There aren’t tell-tale sounds. In some vehicles, a technician from Dearholt Auto Care may be able to see part of the belt for a visual inspection, but many have a cover that’s in the way. The reality is that if the belt slips even one notch, it might as well be broken for all the damage it’ll cause. There’s no middle ground.

So how can we avoid these problems? Simply replace the timing belt when your owner’s manual calls for it. It can be 60,000 miles; it might be 90,000 or 100,000 miles. The point is, if you have 60,000 or more miles, ask your Dearholt Auto Care service advisor right away if your manufacturer requires a timing belt replacement.

Contact Dearholt Auto Care to learn more about your car’s Timing Belt
You can find us at:
7201 Wyoming NE
Albuquerque, NM 87109
Or call us at 505.857.0868

Sometimes you can go quite a while without a failure, but we’ve seen them happen within a couple of oil changes of being due. It’s not worth the risk.

What does it cost to replace a timing belt in Kirtland Afb or Rio Rancho? Well, that really depends on what kind of car you have. I can tell you that it’s usually not very easy to get to the timing belt – you often have to remove some accessories to get at it. It isn’t a cheap procedure, but it’s a fraction of what it could cost to repair the damage caused by a failure.

At Dearholt Auto Care we’re all about trying to prevent costly repairs, keeping you and your passengers safe and increasing your driving enjoyment. Thanks to AutoNetTV for their great auto video tips.

PCV Valve Replacement

Posted on February 22,13 by truck2

The energy from exploding fuel is what powers your engine. But some of the vapors from the explosions escape into the lower part of the engine, called the crankcase. The crankcase is where your engine oil hangs out. These gases are about 70% unburned fuel. If the gases were allowed to stay in the crankcase, they would quickly contaminate the oil and turn it to sludge. Sludge is one of the biggest enemies of your engine, clogging it up, eventually leading to expensive failures. Also, the pressure build up would cause seals and gaskets to blow out. Therefore, these gases need to be vented out.

Gasoline engines used to simply have a hose that let the poisonous fumes vent out into the air. In 1963, the federal government required gas engines to have a special one-way valve installed to help reduce dangerous emissions. Diesel engines are not required to have these valves.

The positive crankcase ventilation, or PCV, valve routes crankcase gases through a hose and back into the air intake system where they are re-burned in the engine. Fresh, clean air is brought into the crankcase through a breather tube. It’s really a pretty simple system, but does an important job. The re-circulating air removes moisture and combustion waste from the crankcase, preventing sludge. This extends not only the life of your oil, but the engine as well. The PCV relieves pressure in the crankcase, preventing oil leaks.

Eventually, the PCV valve can get gummed up. Then it can not move enough air through the engine to keep it working efficiently. If the PCV valve is sticking enough, you could have oil leaks, excess oil consumption and a fouled intake system. If you experience hesitation or surging or an oil leak, it may be a sign of PCV value problems. Your owners’ manual may give a recommendation for when the PCV valve should be replaced – usually between 20,000 mi/32,000 km and 50,000 mi/80,000 km. Unfortunately, some manufacturers don’t list a recommendation in the manual, so it can be easy to overlook.

Many PCV system problems can be diagnosed with a visual inspection. Fortunately, PCV valve replacement is both quick and inexpensive. Proper oil changes will greatly extend the life of the PCV valve. Skipping a few recommended oil changes can allow varnish and gum to build up in the valve, reducing its efficiency. So now when your Albuquerque service technician tells you its time to replace your PCV valve, you will know what he’s talking about. If you have had your car for a while and this is the first you’ve ever heard of a PCV value, ask your tech to check yours out or call Dearholt Auto Care at 505.857.0868.

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Contact Information

auto shop repair

Dearholt AutoCare

7201 Wyoming NE

Albuquerque, NM 87109

Phone: 505.857.0868

Email Us

Fax: 505.856.7131

Feel free to call or email us to schedule your next appointment.


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Monday - Friday
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM

Saturday - Sunday
Closed

  • tune up
  • tune ups
  • oil changes
  • oil change
  • engine repair
  • transmission repair