Trusted Tips and Resources

Trusted Tips & Resources

Saskatoon Auto Repair and Service Pros Tip on Starting Diesel Engines In Saskatchewan Winters

Starting Diesel Engines In Saskatchewan Winters

Starting diesel engines during cold weather can be frustrating if engines are not properly prepared for lower temperatures. Batteries that are weak may not crank the starter motor fast enough or long enough to start a cold engine. As the temperature goes down, so does battery capacity. A battery that has all of its power available at 80 degrees F will have only about 46% available power at -20 degrees C. Plus, the engine will be 2.5 times harder to start at 0 degrees due to thicker oil and resistance to movement of internal moving parts. In effect, an engine is about five times harder to start at -20 degrees C than at 25 degrees C. Test weak or suspicious batteries under load before cold weather to help eliminate potential problems during busy times. If batteries need replacement, always replace with a battery equal to or more powerful than the original battery. Accessories such as radios, air conditioners, heaters and other high amperage devices put extra strain on batteries. Turn all of these devices off while the starter motor is in use.

Use glow plugs or block heaters on the engine for cold weather starts. Glow plugs heat the internal combustion chamber area to suitable temperatures for combustion. Otherwise, cold fuel sprayed into the chamber and onto the glow plugs can gel and adhere to these parts. Hard starting and inefficient combustion occur with the potential for damage to plugs and cylinder heads.
 
Use Number 1 diesel fuel in cold weather. It is more volatile than Number 2 fuel and ignites more readily under cold conditions. Keep the fuel tank full to prevent condensation inside the tank. Water from condensation can freeze and plug fuel lines from the tank to the engine. Add winter diesel fuel additive to the fuel to lower the possibility of gelling and improve starting.
 
Store tractors inside tool sheds, barns, garages or other suitable locations that are heated or warmer than outside temperatures. Only a few degrees warmer temperature can make starting faster and easier. The warmer the battery is, the more power it can provide to the starter motor to crank the engine. The warmer the engine oil is, the thinner it will be and have less resistance to moving engine parts. Make sure you are using the proper viscosity oil recommended for your engine for cold temperatures. If you cannot store engines inside or in a heated area, install a block heater on the engine. To save time and electricity, put the block heater on an electrical timer set to come on a couple of hours before you plan to start the engine.
 
If you suspect fuel has gelled from cold temperatures, change the fuel filter and warm the fuel (wait for the outside temperature to rise, use a block heater or put the tractor inside a heated area) before attempting to start the engine. Gelled fuel in the filter can block the flow of fuel from the tank to the injector pump.
 
After starting the engine on a cold day, allow the engine to warm up a few minutes before putting the tractor under load. Proper engine operation temperatures assure more efficient fuel combustion and may prevent damage to cold engine parts. Engine oil flows more readily at operating temperatures and allows proper lubrication of upper engine parts and area. 


Saskatoon Auto Repair and Service Experts Glenwood Auto Share 10 Driving Tips

Have you ever noticed some older vehicles look new while other ones of the same age are falling apart? 

Staying on top of regular maintenance keeps your vehicle running better for longer. Here are ten daily driving tips to help you keep your car in good shape and save money maintenance-wise at the same time.

1. Avoid potholes

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it is still surprising the number of people I see drive right through potholes even though there is plenty of space to go around them. These, when deep, can not only damage the tire and the wheel, but the impact can also have adverse effects on the suspension and steering components. The whole car will benefit from avoiding or slowing down for potholes, as these repetitive impacts tend to loosen various items in the car, creating rattles and squeaks.

 2. Look down the road

It may seem to be another obvious point, but it is important to look down the road not only to see where you are going but also to spot what is on the road itself. You will want to avoid weird looking items on the road that may damage your tires or bounce against the underside of the car. It will also allow you to spot bumps or dips in the road, or at least slow down for them so the impact is not as harsh.

3. Slow down for train tracks

In the same line of thought as the two previous points, slow down for railroad tracks when coming up to a crossing, or when coming up to a bridge on small country roads. These are always uneven with the pavement and create impacts for the wheels, tires and overall car that can be damaging over time.

4. Do not follow trucks up close

You may not have the choice…Getting stuck behind a truck is unavoidable. But as the driver of your vehicle, you can choose how close you are following the said truck. Not only is it safer to leave a greater distance, but you will also be saving your car from flying rocks and other debris which, over time, damage the paint, damage your headlights and windshield. As a bonus, when following a badly maintained older truck, staying far means less black fumes get into the filter of your ventilation system.

Cars and trucks daily driving











5. Take it easy at first

Your car engine is made to run and move your car swiftly but is designed to do so when at operating temperatures. There is no need to idle the car for long, but take it easy for the first few kilometres while the engine goes up to its normal operating temperature. This will save you wear and tear as well as save some fuel; many engines are not as fuel-efficient when cold.


6. Smooth is key

Smoothness in your actions at the wheel is very important, not only for the stability of the car while moving but also for the durability of the vehicle’s components. For example, start braking slowly and a bit earlier than you normally do, so you don’t have to make panic stops all the time. The same applies to lane changes or merging into traffic. By going smoothly the various mechanical parts of the car will not take a hit but actually be able to work as intended, and thus last longer… Plus your passengers will enjoy the ride rather than being tossed around.

7. Floor it sometimes!

It may sound opposite to the previous advice, but your engine does need to be wound up and pushed at times. Wait until it is at proper operating temperatures and once in a while when merging onto highways, for example, step on the gas for swift acceleration. Getting the engine up in revs will allow it to work hard and burn some of the carbon deposit that tends to accumulate around the valve train. Doing this occasionally will help prevent having an engine head all gummed up or covered with carbon deposits.

8. Get to a full stop before reversing

How often do you, in a rush, throw the gear change lever into reverse (R) while the car is still moving? That is the best recipe for early transmission failure. Take the time to reach a full stop before shifting; this applies to any shifting action. Shifting before this full stop means the transmission needs to take the brunt of the momentum while shifting, which causes undue damage over time.

Make sure to also do so when shifting into park (P). Shifting into park on an automatic transmission means you are engaging a very small lever to lock a gear; that lever is not designed to stop the car and having to do so too often will result in premature failure.

9. Steer while rolling

Whenever possible, try to steer only when the car is in motion. Even when doing a parallel parking maneuver, get the car rolling slightly before turning the steering wheel. This will prevent too much effort being exerted on the steering rack and components, the major cause for steering rack failure. Turning the wheels while standing still puts tremendous stress on the whole steering system as it then has to fight with the tire and asphalt friction while the whole weight of the vehicle is on them.

Steering wheel














10. Plan errands in one round

As much as possible, try to plan all your errands of the day in one outing. There is nothing more damageable for an engine but to be run for only very short trips while being cold. In doing all errands at once, you reduce the time the engine is running cold and have more chances of having it stay to operating temperatures.

A little bit of caution and understanding of your vehicle by following these daily driving tips will help contribute to keeping your car in good shape. 

Saskatoon Auto Repair and Service Experts Explain Belts and Hoses and 2018 Vehicles with Low Maintenance Costs


Vehicle Systems Overview - Belts and Hoses







What are the belt and hoses?

A vehicle’s belts and hoses are essential elements of the cooling, air conditioning and charging systems of the engine.  When a belt or hose breaks down it can leave you stranded, so it is important to meet the set replacement intervals recommended in your owner’s manual.


What do belts and hoses do?



Timing Belt 

The timing belt is a notched rubber belt that allows the crankshaft to turn the camshaft. A timing belt is sometimes called a Gilmer belt or a camshaft drive belt. The camshaft opens and closes the valves in synchronized movement with the engine’s pistons.

 

Serpentine Belt

Serpentine belts, also known as drive belts, provide power to the air conditioning compressor, power steering pump, cooling fan, air injection pump, and more.


Coolant Hoses

Coolant hoses include the upper and lower radiator hoses plus heater hoses. Some cars include a bypass hose. Hoses provide a flexible connection for coolant flow between the engine, radiator, engine and heating block.


TYPICAL WEAR AND TEAR ON BELTS AND HOSES

Key items that affect the replacement interval for belts and hoses:

  • Vehicle age;
  • Electrolytic corrosion;
  • Mileage;
  • Oil contamination;
  • Belt tension; and/or
  • Failed hose clamps.

 

SYMPTOMS

  • Squeaking noise from under the hood during start-up or operation;
  • Coolant leaks;
  • Dashboard light illumination;
  • A/C system failure;
  • Engine overheating; and/or
  • Smell of burnt rubber.




Glenwood Auto Service Shares 2018 Vehicles With The Lowest Maintenance Costs





Kelley Blue Book announced the winners of its seventh annual 5-Year Cost to Own Awards where Hyundai took the win on the lowest maintenance costs and repair side of things, followed by Acura.

 

The 2018 Hyundai Accent came out on top for maintenance and repair costs. Over the course of 5 years, customers would pay $3,002 to take care of their vehicle, or about $600 per year. Kelley Blue Book pegged repair costs at $553, with the costs of maintenance being $2,449 (all prices in U.S. dollars).

 Hyundai was named this year’s top brand for lowest total ownership costs, the second time it has finished on top since the program was created. Hyundai models won thanks to top marks in almost all categories, such as low repair costs and superior warranty program. Its Sonata model won in the mid-size car category, with the Elantra and the Accent coming in second place in the compact and subcompact car categories.

 

Acura took the win for the best luxury brand for the third year in a row, backed by its ILX and MDX models.

 


In particular, the 2018 ILX saw repair and maintenance costs come in at $3,521 over the first five years or $704 annually. Kelley Blue Book listed repairs at $1,154 and maintenance at $2,367.


Third place belonged to the 2018 Chevrolet Spark, which won for the best subcompact car. The maintenance and repair costs are estimated at $3,950 which would equal out to paying $790 a year. The repair costs amount to $1,869 with maintenance costs sitting at $2,081, according to Kelly Blue Book.

On average, in all 23 categories of the vehicle winners, the costs of repairs over the course of 5 years is around $1,550 with maintenance at $2,718 – or $4,268 combined.


The 5-year Cost to Own information takes into consideration the areas of the vehicle that people’s money goes into like depreciation, expected fuel costs, finance and insurance fees, maintenance and repair costs, and state fees. These categories are all areas that come into play when making a vehicle purchase.



Trusted Saskatoon contractors K & S Contracting share a tip on How Not To Build a Deck

 K & S Contracting specialize in foundation repair for homeowners across Saskatchewan, but they also offer general contracting services to Saskatoon and surrounding area including:

5 Common deck building mistakes


When people decide to take on the task of becoming a carpenter, one of the first things they try to learn is how to build a deck. While building a deck can be a fun and fulfilling project, simple mistakes could turn a fun project into a costly or even deadly nightmare. Here are 5 of the most common mistakes to avoid when learning how to build a deck. 

Selecting The Wrong Material



One of the worst mistakes to make when building a deck is to select the wrong building material. Often people buy the wrong wood or use nails where braces are needed, etc. Personally I have come across dozens of decks built with fencing material. What seems like a cost cutting method could add up to major costs in just a few years. Most fence material has square edges, which chip and break off under the slightest amount of foot pressure. This wood also tends to be knotty and often warps in any weather condition. 



Incorrect Riser Heights

 

One of the most confusing aspects of building a deck for an aspiring carpenter, is cutting the stringer. There is a little math involved that often causes first timers to make the mistake of cutting incorrect riser heights. All of the risers should be the same length except for the bottom riser. All of the other risers will lose the depth of the tread once it is put on so the bottom riser should be a tread depth smaller than the other risers. It’s an easy mistake to make when taking everything else into account.

Not Sealing Your Deck

 

When a deck is built with pressure treated wood, it is recommended to avoid sealing it for 6 months. For some homeowners, six months can turn into a couple of years before they know it. When a deck is not sealed, it will start rotting in a hurry. Make sure to properly clean and seal your deck and check it often to make sure it doesn’t need to be sealed again. To check your deck before you wreck your deck, pour a little water on it to see if it absorbs. If the water is absorbed, it is time to seal it again. A little maintenance goes a long way.



 

 Incorrect placement of Beam Splices

 

More often than not, beginning carpenters make the assumption that separating the distance of beam splices between the different plies is important. While it can help if done properly, It is more important to make sure your splices sit on top of posts. Some designs make it possible to stagger the splices and sit them atop separate posts but if this isn’t possible, make sure sit your splices on top of your posts, even if they are only inches apart between plies. If you avoid this warning, you could be rebuilding after inspection. 






Improper Drainage 

This mistake is actually a series of mistakes that many budding builders make. When building your deck, you want to make sure the water drains in an efficient manner. If the deck is attached directly to your house, it is important to use the proper flashing to make sure water doesn’t accumulate on the side of your house, rotting your structure. It is also important to leave a little space between your planks to allow for drainage. Last but not least, consider sloping your deck .25 inches for every 12 inches away from your house. Doing this will help keep water from accumulating on your deck. 

 

Building a deck can be a fun and rewarding experience as long as you plan ahead and avoid these and other costly mistakes. Happy Building!

READ MORE CLIENT REVIEWS HERE ON THEIR WEBSITE K & S Contracting are Saskatoon’s Trusted Contractor for ICF Foundations..."They will get you back on solid ground!"

K & S Contracting are Trusted Saskatoon General Contractors and foundation specialists

 

 

 

 

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