Car News Articles 
 Alternative Fuel Vehicles
 Electric Cars
 Automotive Information
 Car Donations
 Car Rentals
 Child Safety
 Lemon Laws
 Car Buying Tips
 Car Financing
 Car Warranty
 Car Insurance Articles
 Car Maintenance
 Car News
 Car Repair
 Car Safety
 Car Recalls
 Driving Economically
 Gas Mileage
 Exterior Car Care
 Garage Know How
 Road Trips
 Traveling with Kids
 Younger and Older Drivers
 How Car Stuff Works
 Amsoil Synthetic Motor Oil
 Article Archives
 Auto Updates
 Motor Oil
 News List
 New Text
 Spring Info

Authors and Writers 
  Submit an Article
  RSS Feed

Article Archives : Auto Updates

Your Senses Can Tell You A Lot About Your Car
Thu, 19 Jun 2003, 22:51

RSS Feed for Auto Updates   
Email this article
 Printer friendly page
Discuss this story

(NAPSI)—Want to find out if you are having car trouble? Trust your senses.

“There are many ways that your senses can be used, both when the car is stationary and moving, to tip you off to the condition of various parts,” says mechanical engineer Mark Ferner of the Pennzoil-Quaker State Research Technology Center in Houston. Following these guidelines can help save money by locating problems early.


Make sure that all lights work—brake, turn signals, head and rear lights, along with the inside dashboard, dome and glove box lights. Also check your flashlight, which should always be in your emergency kit.

Put some paper towels or newspaper pages on the garage floor or driveway underneath the engine for at least an hour to check for possible fluid leaks. If fluid collects, don’t assume what the fluid is—there are many different brands of fluids of varying colors, including some that change over time.

Jiffy Lube will check fluid levels for free including oil, transmission, differential, radiator, power steering and window washer, as part of overall preventive maintenance. A low level may indicate a leak.

Look at the top and sides of the battery along with the engine. If you see a build up of grime or dirt, clean it. A dirty battery can drain electricity and an engine runs hotter if it’s dirty, using energy that could propel the car.

With a flashlight, check belts on the inside for cracks. If cracks are deep or frequent, the belt may be in danger of breaking. It should be replaced.


Turn off the radio while driving and listen for suspicious sounds. The transition from gear to gear in the transmission should be nearly silent without grinding or rubbing noises. A humming sound from below, possibly a change in pitch when accelerating, can mean the differential or wheel bearings are low on lubricant or a more serious problem may exist. Have the car inspected.

A growling or groaning sound when turning is a strong indication that you’re low or out of power steering fluid.

A high-pitched, rhythmic squeal, either when starting the engine, accelerating or taking a low-speed turn, probably means loose fan belts. Using a belt lubricant may take care of it. If the noise continues, have a professional check it.


If you smell “burning rubber,” it can mean you’re riding the brakes. This poor technique also damages the brakes including the brake linings. The proper way is to pump the brakes lightly and then let up before finally coming to a complete stop. A “rotten egg” smell often means there is unburned gas in the catalytic converter, which is a part of the emissions control located in the exhaust system. Ignoring this problem means an expensive repair later.

A sweet, steamy odor after the vehicle is fully warmed up probably indicates a leak in the coolant system. If you want to check where a leak in the radiator may be coming from, don’t touch its surface or open the radiator while the engine is hot or you may receive severe burns. Let it sit until cool.

It’s wise to use your senses to be more aware of your vehicle. Yet, there’s no substitute for having certified technicians, like those at Jiffy Lube, check that what you observe might indicate the need to have more extensive inspection done on your car.

Automotive : Links

© Copyright 2006 by CarJunky®

Auto Updates

Related Articles
Protect Yourself From Water-Damaged Vehicles
Cut Gasoline Costs
Are You A Normal Or Severe Driver?
Wireless Technology Takes A Byte Out Of Crime
Fill Up On Fuel-Saving Tips
Safe Driving Is In Your Sights
Science Solves Dusty Roads
Racing For The Future
Convertible Caution
Science Solves Dusty Roads
Have You Seen This Bowl?
Advanced Technologies Help Drivers Focus on the Road
Putting The Brakes On Dangerous Driving
Americans Go For New Generation Of Light Vehicle Engines—Diesel
Helping Drivers See The Light
GMC Delivers On Professional Grade Promise With Trucks That Exceed Expectations
Fuel Prices Are Not Expected To Fuel A Slowdown In Camping Plans
Have Mouse, Will Travel
Top 10 Trends in Advanced Transportation Technologies

 View Our News on Your
 MyYahoo or MyMSN

 Add This News To Your MyYahoo
 Add This News To Your MyMSN

 Use Our RSS News Feed
 On Your Site
 RSS Feed   

Car Insurance Info | Newsletter | Car Classifieds | Online Car Rentals
Auto Pictures | Link To

Complete List of Article RSS News Feeds

Copyright © 1999 - . CarJunky® All Rights Reserved.