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Tag Archives: Certified Vehicle Technician

The Importance Of Vehicle Tire And Brake Inspections In The Winter

The Importance Of Vehicle Tire And Brake Inspections In The WinterPerhaps we’ve all been there… driving along on snow or ice. We hit our brakes, but nothing happens. The car just continues to move forward. Obviously, in certain conditions, even the best brakes and tires will not stop the car, but don’t let bad tires or worn brakes be the cause of your next accident! It’s important any time of year, but especially in the winter, to have fully functioning brakes and tires with a proper amount of tread to ensure that you can drive your car safely on the Minnesota snow- and ice-covered roads. If you live or work in the Blaine area, let us check your brakes and tires for you.

Recognizing Worn Brakes

Brakes are eventually going to need replacement. Some vehicles have indicators to help alert you when new pads are needed, however, it is recommended that as a car owner you are proactive about knowing the condition of your brakes. Avoid letting the brakes get too worn (i.e., metal to metal), as that can mean a more expensive rotor or drum replacement and a potential safety issue. If you are experiencing one or more of the following symptoms or have any other concerns in regard to your brakes, please contact Clark Automotive:

● Car pulls to one side during braking
● Brake pedal pulsates when you apply the brakes
● Brake pedal feels “mushy”
● Noise when you step on the brake pedal
● Repeatedly need to add brake fluid to the master cylinder
● Brake and/or ABS warning light

Replacement Of Damaged Tires

Nobody wants to replace a new tire or a tire with plenty of tread still left. But the reality is that our safety should always come first. Your tires are your most important automotive part and the only automotive part that touches the road. The deciding factors on whether a tire can be repaired depend on how much damage has occurred and where the damage is located. The following situations will always warrant a new tire:

● Any damage to the shoulder or sidewall of the tire
● Large holes anywhere in the tire of more than ¼” in diameter
● Evidence of any severe damage, such as tread separation or large gashes
● The tire is damaged in a previously repaired area

Winter Vehicle Inspections And Maintenance

The roads can be a dangerous place, especially when you add unprepared vehicles into the mix with winter weather, and we want to help make sure you stay safe this season. Before the harshest winter weather arrives, you should have your vehicle serviced for the challenges winter can pose. Schedule an appointment today for our mechanics to inspect your vehicle. Call us today at (763) 784-7944.

Getting Your Car Ready For Holiday Travel

Getting Your Car Ready For Holiday TravelThe holidays are here, and you may be getting ready to travel. Whether you are traveling 10s of miles or 1000s of miles, if you travel by car, you should make sure that your car is ready to make the journey safely. The last thing you need is to get stuck with a dead battery, a flat tire or a broken-down vehicle when you are miles away from home and lots of businesses are closed for the holidays. Bring your vehicle to Clark Automotive and we will complete our winter maintenance checklist for you so that you can be confident that your car will not interfere with your upcoming holiday travel plans.

Before you hit the road, you want to make sure that the following systems are working as they should:

Tires: We can inspect your tires for any signs of tread damage or excessive wear and tear that might be a problem for you on an extended trip. We complete tire repair, tire rotation and tire replacement depending on the service that you need. No one wants a flat or blown out tire on a road trip!

Battery: The staff at Clark Automotive can also test your battery to ensure that it is working properly and that it is not time for a replacement. This will ensure that you will not have to deal with a car that does not start. A new battery is a relatively inexpensive issue to fix.

Brakes: Your brakes may be the most important safety feature of your car. They are what allows you to stop when needed. If you are concerned about your brakes or have noticed any break noises, always get your brakes checked before any extended trip. Our brake work includes replacing brake pads, wheel bearings, lubricating backing plates and calipers, topping off or flushing brake fluid, checking the hydraulic system and repairing the drums and rotors.

Blaine MN Auto Repair Shop

We can also complete oil changes and make sure that all of your fluids are topped off when you bring your vehicle in for general maintenance. We value each and every one of our customers and work hard to make sure that your car is safe for your next adventure. Whether you are traveling across town or across the country, we will make sure that your car is ready. For more information or to schedule an appointment with our team, call Clark Automotive at 763-784-7944 today.

Blaine Auto Repair Shop With ASE Certified Technicians

Blaine Auto Repair Shop With ASE Certified TechniciansWhen you are looking for someone to repair your car, you likely have an idea of some of the qualities you need: honesty, responsiveness, affordability and the ability to communicate clearly. In addition, you also want to look for someone who has experience with many different types of vehicle repairs and has received training on fixing cars and trucks. One certification that you can keep your eye out for when you are looking for vehicle repair services is an ASE Certified Mechanic. The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence was first established about 50 years ago with the goal of improving the quality of vehicle service and repair by testing and certifying automotive professionals. This has become the gold standard as a nationally recognized credential for auto mechanics in the US. Clark Automotive is proud Blaine auto repair shop with ASE Certified Technicians.

ASE Certified Mechanic Blaine Minnesota

What does this certification mean for you, the customer? First, it means that you can trust that the person completing the work on your car has completed extensive training and has met the experience requirements for the certification. This certification gives auto shops (and our customers) a tangible marker for skill level. This can lower the stress for a customer who does not know much about the auto repair process and can help build trust between an auto shop and the client. In addition, technicians must retake ASE tests every five years to be sure that they are keeping up with all of the advances in the vehicles and repair processes. ASE certification has created a standard for mechanics that clients can trust.

Clark Automotive believes that building trust with our customers and providing high quality repairs, top notch customer service and affordable prices. As a local business in Crystal, MN, we realize how important being part of the community is and we enjoy getting to know individuals and families from all over the area. We can complete a wide variety of vehicle repairs including brake repairs, tire rotation, battery testing and replacement, starter and alternative repair/replacement, electrical repairs, timing belt service, heating/AC service, exhaust, mufflers, radiator repairs, engine diagnostics and suspension and alignment work. We also are happy to give you a second opinion if another repair shop has made a repair recommendation you are unsure about and/or complete a pre-purchase inspection on a car you are considering.

Comprehensive Auto Repair In Blaine MN

For more information about our car repair services or the ASE Certification process that our technicians receive, call Clark Automotive at 763-784-7944 to schedule an appointment.

Importance Of Routine Vehicle Maintenance

Importance Of Routine Vehicle Maintenance Anyone who is knowledgeable about automobiles–from your amazing local mechanic to a sales representative at an auto dealership to a neighbor who does work on his own car and can fix anything–will tell you that periodic maintenance is the key to keeping your vehicle running smoothly and reliably. One of the reasons our automobiles need unscheduled maintenance is that it can be difficult to keep up with the scheduled maintenance recommended by your vehicles’ manufacturers. Clark Automotive has made a name for us by helping our clients with the routine maintenance needed to keep your car in good shape and also the unscheduled maintenance or repairs when something unexpected happens.

Schedule Routine Maintenance For Your Car

Keeping vigilant about scheduled maintenance requires discipline and a good memory. Part of this discipline is having your car or truck serviced even when there are no obvious signs of problems. The most reliable, problem-free vehicles lull us into a sense of security–a false sense of security–precisely because they are so reliable. All machines eventually break down and it is often the case that the most reliable machines work so well for so long that we do not notice the smallest changes occurring inside them. We become used to the specific hum of our vehicles’ engines, without realizing over the course of tens of thousands–sometimes hundreds of thousands–of miles that parts are wearing and eroding, resulting in a change in the familiar hum of the engine. That is true until something extremely noticeable occurs. We hear a grinding or a loud screech, and we know that something is most definitely wrong. In most cases, a service like Clark Automotive will be able to fix the issue without much of a problem. But in some cases, that new sound means big trouble.

Blaine Minnesota Auto Repair Shop

Scheduled maintenance can prevent a serious problem from ever occurring, but it is difficult to develop the discipline to take your car in for scheduled maintenance. It may be easier to develop that discipline by making a plan to take your car in every 4-6 months. Minnesota’s change of seasons can be a stark reminder for you to get your car serviced so that you can feel confident that your car is prepared for driving in the winter weather that is coming. Minnesota is known for its winters, but summer can also be brutal for a car. So, consider a twice-a-year self-reminder to get your car serviced ahead of the change of weather. Clark Automotive will be here to prepare your vehicle for what is ahead. Call us at (763) 784-7944 to schedule an appointment.

Signs Your Brakes Need To Be Repaired

Signs Your Brakes Need To Be RepairedYour brakes are one of the most important safety features on your vehicle. Most current vehicles come with two front brakes and two rear brakes. Your brakes are what allows you to stop the car when necessary. You can expect your brakes to last between 25,000-60,000 miles depending on how you drive. Your vehicle owner’s manual will give you a specific idea of what to expect when it comes to your specific car. Here are some signs that it may be time to have your brakes serviced:

● Loud screeching noise or a clicking noise when you press on the brakes and slow your car down
● You notice that your steering wheel or entire vehicle shakes when you press down on your brakes
● It takes longer to slow your vehicle down to a complete stop
● Your car pulls to one side or the other when you brake. This may mean that one brake pad has worn down faster than the others.
● You notice your brake light displayed on your dashboard

If you notice one of these signs, it is important to get your car into an auto repair shop as quickly as possible. If your brakes fail, you may not be able to stop while driving. This is a safety hazard for you, your passengers and others on the road. When you drive, your brakes are constantly being used, so it is common for the brake pads, shoes, rotors, drums and calipers, need routine maintenance.

Clark Automotive can help you with a wide range of vehicle maintenance and repair issues including brake work. We recommend that your brakes be inspected twice a year. This is easy to do when you are also having your tires rotated or a routine oil change. Regular brake inspection ensures that you do not end up with a safety problem on your hands. Our staff can make sure that your brakes are in good working order to prevent a major problem. We can replace brake pads, shoes and wheel bearings as needed, lubricate parts such as the backing plate and caliper, repair or replace the drums, and flush the entire brake system.

Auto Shop In Blaine Specializing In Brake Work

If you are concerned about a potential problem with your brakes, give us a call today at 763-784-7944 and we will find time for you to come in quickly for an appointment. We realize that your brakes are a critical part of staying safe on the road so we will work you in if needed.

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