Monday, March 27, 2017

Recalls, Are They Necessary?

You've heard about recalls, but have you wondered if they are necessary?

Recalls are created due to significant safety concern your vehicle may have.  Sadly, too many vehicle owners ignore the notices, instead of having the vehicle fixed and keeping it dependable.

You might wonder why recalls are issued.  There are multiple reasons why a recall is issued, and may include:
  • software related glitches
  • complexity of cars
  • using the same parts in many different car lines
By law, manufacturers are requires to notify vehicle owners of recalls.  They do this in a couple of different ways.  First, they are required to send out a notice through the mail.  In the recent past, manufacturers could also send out notices through email, text messages, targets social media campaigns, phone calls, radio, TV messages, etc.  Perhaps you've been notified of a recall through one of these methods.

If you haven't, or if you are looking to ensure the safety of your vehicle, you can look up a list of recalls on your vehicle at  You will need to know the make, model, and year or the VIN number of your vehicle.

In addition, you can also review recalls for car seats or tires.  There are some great resources out there to keep you safe on the road.  Why not take advantage of them?  This provides safer driving conditions for driver, passengers, and pedestrians.

Spring Driving Series: Earth Day

April 22 is Earth Day.  This is always a good time of year to review what you are all doing to reduce your ecological footprint.

At Jake's Auto & Truck Repair, we do what we can to be environmentally aware.  Some of the steps we take are as follows:
  • Recycle all of the used fluid
  • Return batteries to factory
  • Recycle scrap metal
  • Recycle parts (i.e. send cores back to manufacturer)
  • Promote vehicle maintenance
  • Use environmentally friendly cleaning solvents
If you are looking for some ways that you too can be more environmentally minded when it comes to your vehicle, try the following:
  • Reduce weight.  Take out the extra junk.
  • Use the recommended fuel.
  • Avoid sudden starts and stops.
  • Check your tire pressure.
  • Park in the shade, and use a/c only when needed.
  • Get regular tune-ups
This is a group effort.  If we all work together, we can save our planet for future generations.

April Is National Car Care Month

It's the time of year for spring cleaning.  You are probably de-junking the house, cleaning out the garden, and hopefully maintaining your vehicle(s).

Spring brings its own driving hazards.  Wet roads, pounding rain, later sunsets, and the beginning of road construction which can create some dangerous circumstances.  It's important to make sure that your vehicle is well maintained and dependable.

This is a good time of year to have your 30K, 60K, or 90K services completed.  Tune-ups always help your vehicle run better once they've been done.  Have your alignment checked, and make sure that the winter roads weren't too hard on it.  Replace your windshield if it was cracked over the winter.  Check your tires, both the pressure and treads to ensure reliability and safety.

If you aren't sure what service(s) your vehicle might need, check your owner's manual.  The manufacturer will provide that information. (Your owner's manual is always a great reference for when you have any vehicle questions!)

Be Car Care Aware offers a free Car Care Guide.  This can help provide general information as to what maintenance might be needed and when to get it.

Another option is to sign up for a Service Schedule Reminder.  This will provide service reminders, recalls, and more.

If you get on top of your vehicle's maintenance and other needs now, you are less likely to be in emergency situations for fixing it.

U Drive. U Text. U Pay.

During the week of April 3-10, you may see the included graphics in many places, including social media, TV, and hear about it on the radio.

In 2013, texting and driving took 3,154 lives.  Many of those deaths could have been avoided, if texting was not involved.

Utah has some of the strictest texting and driving laws in the country.  If you are caught texting and driving, you could spend up to three months in jail, and up to a $750 fine.  If an injury or death is caused, you could spend fifteen years in prison, and your fine rises to $10,000!

It's not worth the risk of killing someone because you or someone you know are a distracted driver.  You want to keep you and your family safe, and others who drive on the road.

The best thing to do, is to put your phone away when you drive.  Put it out of reach.  Turn it to silent mode.  Put it in the glove compartment.  Hand it to someone who won't give it back until you are done driving. Create circumstances, so that your phone isn't a distraction.

Another option for you or other drivers in your home is to Take the Pledge.  Sign an agreement promising that you won't text and drive.

For additional information on distracted driving, please review the information at

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Spring Driving Series: Allergies & Your Car

Spring is upon us, and with it comes those dreaded allergies!  You may not suffer allergies, but someone you know does.

You can't always control the allergens in the air, but you have some control as to what allergens you allow in your vehicle. Dirt, dust (dust mites), and pollen are some of the major sources of allergies for many of us.

Allergens can be found in many places in your vehicle, from the forgotten french fry under the seat, to the dusty air vents, to the leaking engine, to the dark, damp trunk.  Some of those allergens will enter your vehicle just due to the fact that you drive it, but here are some helpful tips to keep others out:
  • Clean out any clutter.  Too often, clutter becomes a part of your vehicle and quickly becomes a breeding ground for dust and mildew.  Clean it out, don't leave papers and trash on the floors.  If you have one, empty your garbage regularly.
  • Keep your carpets clean and dry.  Vacuum the interior of your vehicle regularly.  Use floor mats to help protect the carpet. Steaming your carpets is one way to kill any mold or mildew and clean them thoroughly.
  • Avoid eating in your vehicle.  Crumbs and even small spills can breed mold and mildew.
  • Vacuum upholstery, or wipe down leather seats regularly, just like you would your couch.
  • Frequently wipe down all surfaces with a clean damp cloth, and wash your windows regularly.
  • If your pet rides with you frequently, consider keeping a crate in the car for it.  This will help minimize flying fur and pet dander and keep it all in one spot.
  • Skip the air fresheners. Air fresheners release gases and can contribute to allergies.
  • If your air vents are smelling musty, have them checked and cleaned out.
  • Keep your engine compartment clean and leak free.  Oil leaks and condensation can lead to mold and mildew.
  • Clean out your trunk.  Check the area around your spare tire to ensure that it is dry and does not contain any standing water. 
  • Examine weather stripping, and watch for rust spots that could allow water into your vehicle.
Breathe easy this spring by eliminating some of the allergies in your vehicle.

New Drivers....Teenage Drivers

With spring comes many new, teenage drivers.  Many of these new drivers, have spent what may have felt like countless hours (both for you and them), learning the laws of the road, the operation of a vehicle, and enjoying the freedom that comes with it.

Research shows that a new teenage driver's biggest obstacle in driving is lack of experience.  According to the the CDC teens are more likely to "underestimate dangerous situations or not recognize hazardous situations...more likely to speed and allow shorter headways...[and] have the lowest rate of seat belt use."

What can you do to help keep your new driver safe?
  • Educate your teen.  Research shows that scare statistics do not work.  Your teenager has already learned about some of those horrifying statistics.  Instead, help them understand what some of the risk factors are.  Include the following: driver inexperience, driving with teen passengers, nighttime driving, not using seat belts, distracted driving (this includes texting, talking on the phone, etc), drowsy driving, reckless driving, and impaired driving (this includes emotional state). CDC
  • Enroll your teenager in a Graduated Driver Licensing Program (GDL).  This program will give your new driver additional experience in driving and includes continued parental involvement. It's important to spend time driving with your teen even after he/she has received a driver's license. This give you an opportunity to gauge how your child is doing, and will help him/her become more aware of potential hazardous situations.
  • New Driver Deal.  Put together a driving agreement.  This might include family rules regarding vehicle usage, times to be home, who can ride with the new driver.  An example of a New Driver Deal can be found here.
  • Example. You've heard "actions speak louder than words."  You've also heard, "Do as I say, not as I do." Don't take chances that your teen will follow driving laws when you don't. Never practice a behavior you wouldn't want your teenager to practice. Nonverbal communication goes a long way!
Learning to drive is a rite of passage in our culture. Help your new teenage driver be safe and enjoy the new opportunity!


Winter has a tendency to be hard on vehicles.  Between potholes, extreme cold temperatures, and everything in between, there are a lot of factors that can negatively affect the alignment of your vehicle.

It's always a good idea to have your vehicle checked as the winter months come to a close, especially the alignment.  A misaligned vehicle can cause damage to your tires, which could require you to purchase new tires.

In order to preserve the integrity of your tires and the suspension or alignment of your vehicle, look for these warning signs:
  • pulling in one direction
  • excessive bouncing
  • visible tire damage or uneven tire wear
  • loss of control when driving
  • low tire pressure
Any of these signs indicate that something isn't quite right with your vehicle.  If your vehicle exhibits any of these signs, please bring your car into Jake's Auto.  The sooner your alignment is checked and fixed, the less damage will be incurred, and the sooner you will be back on the road.

Summer Driving Series: Don't Leave Your Kids in the Car!

Summer is here!  You are hopefully enjoying your air conditioner as you drive through town. (If not, make sure you call Jake's Auto to h...