Is it Time to Replace Your Wiper Blades?

Is it Time to Replace Your Wiper Blades?

Although you may not think about them very often, wiper blades are pretty important! Most of us have experienced sudden snow or rain when a storm hits while we’re driving—then we turn on the windshield wipers and there’s nothing but streaks. Needless to say, this can be nerve-wracking (and dangerous), especially if you’re driving at night and have to deal with the glare of on-coming headlights. The best way to prevent this is to replace your wiper blades before they fail.

Why is it Necessary to Replace Your Wiper Blades?

It probably goes without saying, but the more you use your wiper blades, the sooner they’ll wear out. Rain, road grime, and even cleaning the bugs off your windshield will contribute to wear, but the environment does as well. Even when you’re not using your wiper blades, they’re exposed to UV rays, ozone, soap, grime, and fluctuating temperatures—all of which lead to deterioration over time.

Replacing your wiper blades isn’t just good for visibility, either. The wiper blades use rubber blades that are connected to metal arms to move rain and snow off your windshield; when the rubber gets worn down, it exposes the metal. This can cause the metal to make contact with your windshield, which can scratch the glass and eventually develop into deep grooves. Once this happens, you’ll need to replace or resurface the windshield. It’s much less expensive (and less of a hassle!) to simply replace your wiper blades before they can cause any damage. 

Fortunately, wiper blade replacement is easy to do—even if you have no automotive experience. A general rule is to replace them every 6 to 12 months. Common signs that it’s time for a replacement include:

  • The metal frames are bent
  • A streaky windshield
  • Gaps between the wiper blades and the windshield
  • Noises when the wiper blades are operating, such as grinding or squeaking
  • Visibly damaged rubber
  • The blades skip across your windshield

Wiper Blade Upgrades

Although you can swap out your old blades for the same type, there are also wiper blade upgrades (in both material and design) available. 

Traditional black rubber blades are great for clearing your windshield when they’re new, but their performance degrades over time. Silicone blades are far less affected by environmental conditions and last longer. 

When it comes to design, there are two elements to consider. First, some wiper blades have a single wiping edge; others have multiple edges. The idea is to maximize the wiping power during both swipes of the blade. 

The second element is the wiper frame—the part that applies pressure on the blade as it passes over the windshield. Conventional wiper blades have frames with four to six contact points on the blade, which apply the pressure needed to clear water and snow. The other design is called a “beam frame.” This uses uniform pressure along the entire surface of the wiper. The shape catches the wind passing over the vehicle to provide additional downforce to help get a clean swipe. A hybrid frame has four to six contact points as with a conventional blade, but also incorporates an airfoil to provide additional downforce as with beam blades.

Which blade is best? It’s always recommended to use at least the grade and design listed in your owner’s manual. However, you can always upgrade for better performance and longevity. While you’re at it, it’s also a good idea to make sure you have plenty of windshield wiper fluid and that your washer nozzles are working properly. 

Need Assistance with Your Wiper Blades?

Whether you need help installing your wiper blades or recommendations on upgrades for your vehicle, EuroCar Service is here to help! We specialize in all European makes and models, including AudiBMWLand RoverMercedesMini CooperSaabVolkswagenVolvoSmart CarFiat, and Jaguar. Call us today at 206-527-8828 or request an appointment online. 

What is Fuel Injector Cleaning?

What is Fuel Injector Cleaning?

Are you looking for ways to save money at the gas pump? One of the most common issues we see with fuel economy is clogged fuel injectors. When the fuel injectors get blocked by carbon deposits and debris, it can cause your vehicle to use more fuel than it used to. Fortunately, fuel injector cleaning is generally all that’s needed to get your vehicle’s mileage back on track. 

What Are Fuel Injectors, and What Does Fuel Injection Cleaning Entail?

Fuel injectors are components that send fuel from the gas tank into the engine. The injectors atomize the fuel and then force it directly into the combustion chamber at the precise time in the combustion cycle. This process happens thousands of times a minute. Over time, high temperatures under the hood and variations in fuel quality can cause the injectors to collect wax, dirt, water, additives, and carbon. This can cause them to become partially clogged, which prevents them from being able to deliver the right amount of fuel at the proper pressure. 

When your vehicle’s fuel injectors are dirty, it causes the fuel to burn less efficiently, leading to a loss of power and poor fuel economy. Some other signs that can indicate when it’s time to have your fuel injectors serviced include:

  • Rough idling
  • Engine misfires
  • Engine vibration
  • The check engine light is on
  • Fuel leaks
  • A smell
  • Engine surges

If your fuel injectors are completely clogged, there’s a chance your engine won’t start at all. 

During your fuel injection service, our technicians will inspect the various components associated with the fuel injection system, including the system’s connections, vacuum lines, pressure regulator, and fuel rail. We’ll also clean the fuel injectors, so they operate perfectly and deliver the ideal amount of fuel for your engine. Although it can vary based on your make and model, fuel injector cleaning is typically recommended every 36-48 months or around every 45,000 miles. 

Keep Your Engine Performing its Best with Fuel Injection Cleaning 

For an engine to perform well, it needs a carefully balanced mix of fuel and air. If the injectors become clogged, it can disrupt the ratio of the mixture and affect the combustion process, resulting in issues with starting your engine, drivability, performance, and gas mileage. At EuroCar Service, we use state-of-the-art equipment and cleaners during our fuel injection services to restore your engine’s performance and fuel economy. We specialize in all European vehicles, including BMWAudiLand RoverMercedesMini-CooperSaabJaguarVolkswagenVolvoSmart Car, and Fiat! Call us today at (206) 527-8828 or request an appointment online. 

Why is Auto Air Conditioning Service Necessary?

Why is Auto Air Conditioning Service Necessary?

Did you know most car owners don’t service their vehicle’s air conditioner until after it fails? 

Just like other systems in your car, regular maintenance is important for your air conditioner and ensures it always has enough refrigerant to do the job. When there are leaks in the system that allow the refrigerant to escape, your AC can’t cool the air as well. In addition to the refrigerant, AC systems use a special oil that lubricates the components and keeps the seals intact. If the oil or refrigerant is low, it can cause your air conditioner’s parts to wear prematurely. 

What’s Involved in Car AC Service?

The air conditioning system cools the air and removes humidity from the inside of your vehicle using three main components: the compressor, condenser, and evaporator. 

The compressor, which gets its power from the serpentine belt, pumps the refrigerant through the closed system where it’s exposed to pressure. The pressure causes the refrigerant to change from gas to liquid and passes through the evaporator, capturing heat. Then, the refrigerant moves through the system lines and into the condenser. The refrigerant releases the heat outside the vehicle and turns back into a liquid. For your AC to work properly, the system needs to have the proper refrigerant and lubrication levels, and all the components must be in good working order.

We begin your air conditioning service by doing a visual inspection of the components. Our technicians look for signs of damage or leaks and inspect the compressor and serpentine belt for cracks or wear. We’ll check that the compressor, evaporator, and condenser are operating correctly and conduct a temperature drop and leak test. If we detect a leak (which will typically be in the hose or connection), we’ll repair it and retest the system.

If needed, we’ll also remove the old refrigerant and recharge the system with fresh refrigerant. Finally, we’ll perform one last test to ensure your air conditioning system is working perfectly, and you’ll be on your way! 

How Often Should Your Car’s Air Conditioner Be Serviced?

The interval for car AC service really varies from vehicle to vehicle. Check your owner’s manual for your manufacturer’s recommendations, or ask one of our friendly service advisors. It’s typically every two years, but it may be different for your make and model. EuroCar Service specializes in all European vehicles, including BMWAudiLand RoverMercedesMini-CooperSaabJaguarVolkswagenVolvoSmart Car, and Fiat! If you need car AC service or repair, call us today at (206) 527-8828 or request an appointmentonline.  

What is Differential Service—And Do You Need It?

What is Differential Service – And Do You Need It?

When you drive around a corner in your car, the outside wheels have a slightly longer distance to travel than the inside wheels. Because of this, the outer wheels need to spin at a faster speed to keep pace with the inner wheels. The component that makes this possible is called the differential. The differential essentially allows your wheels to travel at different speeds without binding or hopping while transferring power from the engine

If you have a rear-wheel drive vehicle, the differential is on the rear axle; for front-wheel drive vehicles, the differential function is handled by the transaxle. All-wheel drive vehicles have differentials on both axles, as well as a center differential or a transfer case. This allows compensation between the front and the rear axles. 

Why Differential Service is Important

Since all the power of the engine is transferred through the differential(s), they’re very strong and built to last a long time. However, like other components in your vehicle, your differential needs to be serviced in order to perform its best.   

Like engines, differentials use oil to keep the internal gears lubricated and reduce friction that can cause excessive wear or heat. However, differential oil is much thicker than engine oil. It needs to be changed at regular intervals because the oil will become thin and contaminated over time. If the oil isn’t changed, the differential will start to have metal-on-metal contact, which will wear out its gears. 

What’s Involved in a Differential Service?

During a differential service, your technician will drain the old differential fluid and replace it with new fluid. They’ll also inspect the u-joints, which connect your drive shaft to the differential. In some cases, we may recommend servicing these as well. 

The interval for differential service can vary based on your vehicle, its mileage, and your typical driving conditions, but it’s generally around every 40,000 to 60,000 miles. However, if you frequently drive on dirt roads or other dusty conditions, it may need to be changed more frequently. Check your owner’s manual for recommendations on your car, or ask your service advisor. 

Differential Replacement

Although differentials last a long time, they’ll eventually wear out and need to be replaced. A failing differential isn’t something you want to ignore—it can freeze up while you’re driving and cause you to lose control or damage other parts of your vehicle, like the axle, driveshaft, or transmission. Some common signs your differential needs to be repaired or replaced include:

  • Excessive engine oil consumption
  • Reduce handling around corners 
  • Difficulty steering
  • Noises like grinding gears, clunking, whining, or howling
  • Sidewall or out tire damage
  • Vibrations that increase as you speed up

If you’ve noticed any of the above signs or you’re due for a differential service, contact the pros at EuroCar Service. We specialize in all European makes, including BMWAudiLand RoverMercedesMini-CooperSaabJaguarVolkswagenVolvoSmart Car, and Fiat! Call us today at (206) 527-8828 or request an appointment online. 

The History of the Dashboard & Important Warning Lights to Watch For

The History of the Dashboard & Important Warning Lights to Watch For

Have you ever wondered why they call the part of your vehicle that sits behind the steering wheel the “dashboard?” It might surprise you to learn that the name comes from a time before cars were even invented. 

When people traveled by horse and buggy, the streets weren’t what they are today. Instead of smooth concrete or asphalt, the roads were rough and unpaved. It wasn’t unusual for mud and stones to get “dashed” (meaning knocked, thrown, or hurled) in the direction of the buggy. Because of this, carriage makers began installing a board to protect them—which became known as the dashboard. 

Eventually, the word carriage got shortened to car, and the dashboard was sometimes referred to as the “dash.” Today’s dashboards sit behind and below the windshield and are used to house a variety of controls and instruments. 

Modern Dashboards Have Become Essential

In addition to the speedometer, tachometer, and gas gauge, your instrument panel has warning lights that can alert you to a variety of issues. These are very important to pay attention to, as they can help you prevent breakdowns, damage to the various systems, and costly repairs. Here are a few of the most important dashboard warning lights to watch for:

Oil Pressure: Oil is essential; it keeps the moving parts of your engine well-lubricated, reduces friction on these parts that can lead to excessive wear and tear, and pulls heat away from the engine. When the oil pressure light comes on, it means there’s been a drop in oil pressure in the engine—so the parts aren’t getting the lubrication they need. Left too long, this can cause serious damage. Call your service advisor immediately and avoid driving until the issue has been resolved. 

Check Engine Light: If your check engine light is on, it means one or more sensors in your vehicle have detected an abnormal situation. This could be anything from a loose or faulty gas cap to a clogged sensor or severe engine misfires. Again, this should be checked out as soon as possible. Our technician will read the code stored in your vehicle to diagnose the issue. If the check engine light is flashing, this means the problem could cause serious damage—so don’t wait! Get it checked out right away. 

Brake Light: If this light is on, it could mean that you left your parking brake on, or there could be a more serious problem, like low brake fluid or hydraulic system issues. Check your parking brake first; if this isn’t on, and the light is on, make sure to get it diagnosed ASAP. 

Tire Pressure: Newer vehicles have a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) built in that will tell you if any of your tires are under or overinflated. Both conditions are a problem. Underinflated tires can affect your ability to handle the vehicle and brake safely, while overinflated tires are more prone to damage from debris, potholes, and other road conditions. If the light is flashing, it means the tire pressure monitoring system itself needs attention. 

Of course, there are many more warning lights in your vehicle. If you see any of the following, it’s best to have your vehicle towed to our shop:

  • Oil light
  • Temperature light
  • Charging (Batt) light
  • Brake light

These warning lights indicate issues that could cause serious engine damage, or leave you stranded or with unsafe brakes. 

Visit EuroCar Service for Reliable Car Diagnostics

Although things were simpler back in the horse and buggy days, today’s dashboard warning lights can tell you many things about the complexities of modern vehicles. At EuroCar Service, we want to make sure your driving experience is trouble- and worry-free! We offer reliable diagnostics services for all European makes, including BMWAudiLand RoverMercedesMini-CooperSaabJaguarVolkswagenVolvoSmart Car, and Fiat! Call us today at (206) 527-8828 or request an appointment online.  

Trouble Accelerating? It May Be the Throttle Position Sensor

Trouble Accelerating? It May Be the Throttle Position Sensor

When you step on the accelerator pedal, you expect your vehicle to speed up—not slow down. If it doesn’t, you may have a problem with the throttle position sensor (TPS). 

What is the Throttle Position Sensor?

The TPS is a sensor that helps determine the right mixture of fuel and air in the engine. When the engine needs more air to accelerate, the throttle opens; it closes when you need less. The sensor is responsible for sensing the position of the throttle. It sends that information, along with airflow measurements, to your vehicle’s onboard computer. 

The computer takes a variety of factors, such as the airflow and how fast the engine is turning over to determine how much fuel the engine needs. When everything is working properly, you’ll have good fuel economy and the acceleration you’d expect. If the TPS fails, you might notice the following symptoms:

  • Poor acceleration
  • Reduced engine power 
  • Your vehicle accelerates on its own
  • The check engine light is on
  • Stalling
  • A rough or slow idle
  • Your vehicle won’t shift up

If you notice any of the above signs, it’s best to schedule an appointment soon. A faulty or failing TPS can be a serious safety issue. 

In the case of total TPS failure, most vehicles have what’s known as a “limp home” or “limp-in” mode. This is a security feature that’s activated when your vehicle’s computer detects an issue that could damage the engine. The less important features of your car will be switched off, and you’ll have reduced engine power and speed, but it’s enough to get you home or to the repair shop. 

Get Your TPS Repaired at EuroCar Service

Computers are an essential part of today’s vehicles, so it’s important to keep them—and the sensors that provide vital information—working properly. Our qualified technicians will diagnose and install the correct TPS replacement part. In some cases, it may also need to be reprogrammed, so it can work harmoniously with the other software in your vehicle. 

Whether you’re having acceleration issues or just need some general maintenance, EuroCar Service is here to keep your vehicle safe and reliable. We see all European makes, including AudiBMWMercedesLand RoverMini-CooperSmart CarVolvoSaabJaguarVolkswagen, and Fiat. Schedule an appointment today by calling (206) 527-8828 or request an appointment online.  

Why Won’t My Car Door Open (or Close)?

When was the last time you thought about the doors on your vehicle? Of all the parts most taken for granted, they must be near the top of the list, but when you think about it, they have a very important job. Doors allow us to enter and exit our cars, lock them, and even keep our families protected from harm. But what happens when you can’t open or close one or more of your doors?

Why Do Car Doors Stop Working?

Let’s say you just got to your destination and go to shut the door, only find that it won’t latch closed. Now you can’t lock your vehicle, and it’s unsafe to drive. You might have a stuck latch, a handle malfunction, door alignment issues, or electric problems.

Now, what happens when the door won’t open? Although inconvenient, this is also a safety issue. If you’re in an accident, you need to be able to get out of your car as quickly as possible. If the door isn’t opening, you could have a bent latch, a broken lock, or a mechanism within the door could be corroded.

Regardless of why your car door isn’t working, this is not a DIY job. It’s common for drivers to try to fix the issues themselves, only to find that they’ve caused more damage.

Getting Your Car to the Repair Shop Safely

If your car door is stuck open, the safest way to get it to our repair facility is to have it towed. Some drivers will try to use a bungee cord or strap to keep the door closed, but this can be dangerous, and we don’t recommend it. If the door is stuck, there’s a good chance that the other doors are still working. If so, you can open one of them, climb into the driver’s seat, and carefully head over to our shop.

How to Prevent Car Door Problems

Since doors are used hundreds of times a year, it’s not surprising they can have problems. To prevent issues, it’s best to have your door maintained along with the rest of your vehicle. Door locks, latches, and hinges should be lubricated regularly to keep them from sticking; you should also try to keep your locks clean. If you have a newer car with an electronic lock, make sure to check the mechanical lock (and know how to use it) from time to time, just in case the power fails in your key fob or vehicle. You can also visit us to check that the latches line up properly, and the doors aren’t sagging.

Whether you’re having issues with your doors, are due for scheduled maintenance, or need a major repair, the ASE-certified technicians at EuroCar Service are here to help! We specialize in all European makes and models, including Audi, BMW, Land Rover, Mercedes, Mini Cooper, Saab, Volkswagen, Volvo, Smart Car, Fiat, and Jaguar. Schedule an appointment today by calling 206-527-8828.

The Top 5 Reasons to Keep Your Car Well-Maintained

Keeping up with your vehicle’s maintenance services is essential if you want it to run right. However, it’s not uncommon for many drivers to let maintenance take the backseat! We all get busy at times, and it can be easy to overlook maintenance, especially when your car is running well.

However, routine maintenance is the best thing you can do for your vehicle. In general, it takes less time—and money—to have basic maintenance performed rather than major auto service. It’s also more convenient because you can schedule maintenance on your terms, rather than dealing with an unanticipated repair.

Here are five more reasons you should make an effort to keep your car well maintained:

  1. Safety first. A well-maintained car won’t put you or your passengers (or other drivers on the road) at unnecessary risk. All the important safety features, like brakes, headlamps, and tires, will be inspected and replaced as needed.
  1. Better fuel economy. With the cost of gas these days, we can all use better fuel economy! Inadequate tire pressure, a dirty fuel system, and a clogged air filter hurt gas mileage. Routine maintenance helps all the systems in your vehicle run more efficiently, including the way your engine burns fuel.
  1. Preserve your vehicle’s resale value. No one wants to pay Blue Book value for a vehicle that hasn’t been well-maintained over the years. Things like transmission problems or radiator issues are just another expense for the buyer—not to mention, a bargaining chip for the asking price.
  1. Keep your warranty intact. Your warranty claims may be denied if your service history doesn’t fulfill the minimum maintenance requirements recommended by your vehicle’s manufacturer.
  1. Save money! We already mentioned this above, but regular maintenance is one of the best ways to prevent expensive repairs. For example, something as small as getting your oil changed at the recommended intervals can help you avoid serious engine issues, like overheating, engine sludge, worn components, blown gaskets, or the engine seizing up.

Tips to Help You Remember the Main Maintenance Items:

So, what are some of the most important things to focus on? Here are some of the main types of maintenance to keep in mind:

  • Fluids. This includes oil, transmission fluid, coolant, power steering fluid, brake fluid, differential fluid, etc. To do their job well, they need to be at the proper level and changed out when they become dirty or contaminated.
  • Tires. Maintain the proper air pressure, and get your tires balanced, rotated, and aligned. And while you’re thinking about tires, this should also include brakes and shock absorbers.
  • Air and fuel. Air filters and fuel filters should be replaced at the recommended intervals, and the fuel system should be cleaned from time to time.

Visit EuroCar for Full-Service Maintenance and Repairs

This is by no means a complete list, but don’t worry; we’ll help you figure out the rest! Keeping these three categories in mind is an easy way to make sure you’re getting important routine maintenance at the right intervals. While we’re performing maintenance, we’ll also keep an eye out for anything that might be worn or faulty.

Whether your car is due for routine maintenance or you need a repair, EuroCar Service is here to help! We specialize in all European vehicles, including BMW, Audi, Land Rover, Mercedes, Mini-Cooper, Saab, Jaguar, Volkswagen, Volvo, Smart Car, and Fiat! Call us today at (206) 527-8828 or request an appointment online.

Is a Cabin Air Filter Replacement Necessary?

Decades ago, we began to become aware of the importance of air quality, as the effects of pollution were becoming more evident. Since then, we’ve come to understand that air quality, whether outdoors or in your home, plays a large role in respiratory health. But what about the air quality inside your vehicle?

What Are Cabin Air Filters?

Cabin air filters now come standard on most vehicles manufactured since 2000. These filters work by cleaning the outside air before it makes its way into the passenger compartment. They can filter particles down to 3 microns, which is effective for removing dust, pollen, and most pollutants. Cabin air filters make driving more comfortable, but they’re especially helpful for people who suffer from asthma, allergies, or other respiratory issues.

However, like the air filters in your home, cabin air filters aren’t meant to last forever. Over time, they can become dirty and overloaded with debris, which can severely reduce their efficacy. Although cabin air filters have been around for over 20 years, many people don’t realize they even have them! You can look in your owner’s manual to see if your car is equipped with one of these filters; if it is, there will be a recommendation on how often you should change it.

Recommendations vary, but typically cabin air filters should be replaced every 12,000-15,000 miles. If you drive in areas with a lot of dust or pollen (dirt roads, for example), you may need to change it more often. Check with your service advisor, and they’ll be happy to give you recommendations based on your model and driving conditions. The filters are usually located in the engine department or under the dashboard. How hard your air filter will be to change depends on your vehicle. Some of them are easily accessible, while others take some work to get to.

If you drive a hybrid, it’s also important to know there’s a special air filter that helps clean the air and cool the battery pack. This filter should be inspected every time the cabin air filter is inspected and replaced when dirty. If the filter goes too long without replacement, it can cause the battery pack to overheat.

What Problems Can a Dirty Air Filter Cause?

Since cabin air filters are designed to remove particles that can cause issues for your health, a dirty filter can lead to allergic reactions or breathing issues. For this reason, you may want to consider replacing it in February or early March, before the spring allergy season begins. Dirty air filters can also lead to mold growth—which can impact your health.

Another problem caused by clogged cabin air filter is poor HVAC efficiency. As a result, your vehicle’s heating and cooling system has to work harder. Over time, the excessive strain on the system can cause the blower motor to burn out. Poor efficiency also means less airflow, so you may find that your temperature control doesn’t work as well at keeping you comfortable once the seasons change. Less airflow also affects the defroster, making it more difficult to clear fog or condensation on the windows. In addition, dirty air can lead to condensation buildup. Replacing dirty cabin air filters will keep your windows clearer, giving you better visibility.

How to Know if Your Cabin Air Filter Needs to Be Replaced

If you aren’t sure when your cabin air filter was last changed, here are a few signs that it may be time for a replacement:

  • Musty or unusual odors coming from the vents that get stronger when you increase the airflow.
  • Poor airflow from the interior vents
  • Loud fan noises or a whistling noise when the air is circulating
  • Difficulty defrosting your windows
  • Reduced heating or AC efficiency
  • Allergy symptoms (such as sneezing, coughing, or difficulty breathing) when you’re in your car

Give Your Car a Breath of Fresh Air at EuroCar Service!

If you’ve noticed any of the above signs or suspect your vehicle is due for a cabin air filter replacement, contact EuroCar Service! We offer complete care for European vehicles, including BMW, Fiat, Mercedes, Land Rover, Audi, Mini-Cooper, Saab, Jaguar, Volvo, Volkswagen, and Smart Car. From factory-recommended maintenance to repairs, we’ll help you keep your vehicle comfortable and running its best. Give us a call at (206) 527-8828 or schedule your appointment online.

EuroCar Service: Complete Care for Your Vehicle!

At EuroCar Service, we offer comprehensive care for European vehicles. From routine maintenance to repairs, we do it all! However, you may not be familiar with all the services we offer, so here’s a quick overview of some of the most common ones we perform—as well as a few overlooked services:

Fuel System Cleaning

If you’ve noticed your vehicle is running sluggishly or lacks acceleration, it might be time for a fuel system cleaning. Each time you push on the gas pedal, you’re controlling how much fuel and oxygen the engine takes in. Over time, the fuel system can develop deposits that lead to lower fuel economy, a loss of power, and other drivability issues. Performing a fuel system cleaning from time to time removes these deposits from the system, including the fuel injectors and combustion chamber, and improves engine performance. We’ll also replace the fuel filter if needed.

Headlight Replacement

Halogen and standard headlights will gradually start to fade, reducing your ability to see—and be seen—on the road. In the past, headlight replacement was relatively simple because there were limited options. Today, there are two different types of headlight systems and several types of lights, including LED, Halogen, Xenon/HID, and Laser, which can make replacing them a bit confusing. We can help you select the right kind of light for your system and driving conditions, and take care of the installation. Are your headlight lenses starting to look yellowed or cloudy? We also offer headlight restoration!


There are many reasons why you might want to get an inspection. Maybe you recently purchased a used car and want to find out if it needs any repairs, or you’d like to have peace of mind for a long road trip—or maybe you’d like to make sure there are no problems brewing before winter hits.

Having your car inspected ensures everything is operating smoothly, and it allows us to spot any issues that might be starting. It’s a great way to prevent breakdowns, plus it can help save you money on future repair bills. During an inspection, we’ll check all the systems, as well as your brakes and tires. If you’ve noticed any unusual noises, vibrations, or drivability issues, be sure to let us know so we can check them out.

Oil Change

You’ve likely heard it again and again, but it’s true: oil changes are one of the most important types of maintenance you can do to prolong the life of your engine. Engines operate at extremely high temperatures, but excessive heat can cause irreversible damage. Clean oil keeps all the moving parts well-lubricated and prevents the heat-producing friction that can damage your engine. It also helps to pull the heat away from the engine and into the radiator.

When oil is dirty, it’s less efficient at lubrication and heat removal. Over time, the oil will begin to break down and become gritty from accumulated debris. If you wait too long to change the oil, it can turn into sludge, which can clog the engine, and in severe cases, cause it to fail.

It’s always best to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for your oil change schedule, but if it’s been a while, you can check the color of your oil to see how dirty it is by pulling out the dipstick and wiping the oil off on a white cloth or paper towel. If the oil is a golden or amber color, it’s still clean. If it looks dark brown or black, it’s time to chance the oil and oil filter. If it looks milky or cream-colored, however, this could be a sign that you have a head gasket leak. If you have a high-mileage vehicle or would like to switch to synthetic oil, be sure to discuss it with your service advisor at your appointment.

PCV Valve Service

“PCV” stands for the Positive Crankcase Ventilation valve, a small one-way valve that allows escaped gases to exit the crankcase. These gases then get sent to the intake system, where they’re re-burned in the engine. Over time, the PCV valve gets gummed up. Although preventive maintenance, like oil changes, can help extend its life, the PCV valve will eventually need to be replaced because it won’t allow the gases to circulate properly. This causes pressure on the crankcase and can eventually lead to oil leaks.

Power Steering Service

Power steering service is often overlooked by many drivers, but it’s essential for keeping your power steering system in tip-top shape. Like oil, power steering fluid can break down over time, collecting grime that can damage the steering lines, pump, rack, and pinion seals. The fluid also becomes more acidic, which can lead to wear on the seals or other types of damage. Flushing and replacing this fluid will keep the system well-maintained and extend the life of it and its components.

The mileage interval for power steering service varies based on the make and model, but it’s generally needed between 30,000-60,000 miles. If you can see grit or debris in your reservoir, it’s probably time to schedule a service. If the fluid is low, the system should be inspected because it’s a closed system that shouldn’t be losing fluid; you may have a leak.

Serpentine Belt Replacement

The serpentine belt is a single belt that connects your vehicle’s power steering, electrical, cooling system, and air conditioning, so needless to say, it’s an essential component! If the belt breaks, all of these systems may shut down and your vehicle could overheat. The serpentine belt should be inspected regularly and proactively replaced once it starts to show signs of wear or damage.

Shocks and Struts Replacement

Have you started to feel every little bump in the road? It may be time for a shocks and struts replacement. The suspension system helps manage your handing on the road and improves comfort by cushioning bumps and vibrations. However, the system is subject to a lot of wear and tear. Even with normal driving, parts like ball joints, tie rod ends, and bushings can wear out or become damaged. This is especially true if you drive in areas with a lot of potholes. Not only can work or broken suspension components make your ride less comfortable, but they can also affect your vehicle’s safety.

Most manufacturers recommend replacing your shocks and struts around 50,000 miles after a thorough inspection. If you’re experiencing comfort or handling issues, or your vehicle has been in an accident, it’s also worth having your suspension system inspected to make sure there’s no damage.

Transmission Service

Transmission service is a part of routine vehicle maintenance, just like an oil change. Transmission fluid keeps the moving parts of the transmission well-lubricated and acts as a coolant. In general, manual transmissions have shorter service intervals than automatic transmissions because the fluid can become contaminated as the metal bearings and gears wear down. Like with old oil, this makes the transmission fluid less effective.

Most manual transmission manufacturers recommend transmission service every 30,000-60,000 miles, while the recommendations for automatics are typically between 60,000-100,000 miles. During a transmission service, we’ll flush the old transmission fluid and replace it with new fluid. We’ll also examine the sump pump or pan, replace or clean the filter, and install a new pan gasket.

Tire Rotation and Wheel Balancing

Tires can be costly to replace, but with routine maintenance like rotations and balancing, you can make them last quite a bit longer. But what’s the difference between the two?

As you drive, the tread on your front tires wears more quickly than the tread on the rear tires because they’re subject to greater friction from navigating around turns. During a tire rotation, we switch the front tires with the rear tires, which allows them to wear more evenly. When to get a rotation depends on several factors: the brand of tires, your steering system, your driving behavior, and your typical driving conditions. Typically, you’ll need a rotation every 5,000-8,000 miles.

Hitting a curb or driving over bumps, potholes, or similar conditions can throw off the balance of your wheels, which can lead to vibration, excessive tire wear, suspension damage, and other issues. Wheel balancing (also called tire balancing) equalizes the weight of the wheel and tire assembly so that it spins smoothly and evenly at a high speed. To do this, we put the tire and wheel assembly in a balancer, which centers the wheel and spins it to determine where we should add weight to the tire to balance it out. If your wheels need balancing, you might notice odd vibrations on the floorboard or in the seats.

Need Repairs or Maintenance? Give Us a Call!

If you need repairs or maintenance, your vehicle is always in excellent hands at EuroCar Service. We specialize in complete care for European makes, including Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Land Rover, Mini-Cooper, Fiat, Volvo, Volkswagen, Saab, Jaguar, and Smart Car. Schedule an appointment with us today at (206) 527-8828, or request an appointment through our online form.