Have You Noticed Your Vehicle Having a Bumpy Ride Recently?
When you’re driving in your car and notice any excessive rumbling, bouncing, shaking, swaying, rocking, wobbling, or other odd feelings while either in motion or attempting to stop, there might be a mechanical problem.
Ideally, your drive should be smooth and comfortable, not feel like you just got off a roller coaster. Beyond comfort, if your vehicle’s performance is rather uncertain you could be putting yourself and others at risk. It is possible that the bumpy ride is coming from your transmission.
For example, you may not be able to stop or turn fast enough, and your vehicle may even fail you when you least suspect it, such as a tire blow out. If you notice any odd activity in your vehicle, we recommend you have it serviced and inspected immediately.
Did you know that having a small problem checked before it turns into a larger one can save you money? Often times, you’ll save a lot of money, as when one part fails, it usually causes other parts to follow suit.
Read this list of the top reasons your vehicle may not be driving smoothly to help save you time, money, and potentially keep those you’re driving safe. It may also be a problem with something else in your vehicle that needs to be repaired.
Tires are usually the first culprit to investigate when your vehicle’s motion feels off. Bumpy rides can be either due to the tire alignment, air pressure, or even the tires being inappropriately secured. Far too often, someone will change a tire and not realize the tire is not set against the back disk firmly. Once they tighten the nuts on the tire, they may think it’s secured, only to find out that the car wobbles, vibrates, or shakes when in motion. Even if there is a slight movement, over time this will take its toll on the tire, brakes, disk, and numerous other components. If the problem lies in the wheel alignment, it can be difficult to detect at times but a clue lies in the steering wheel favoring slightly to one side and doesn’t drive straight easily. One telltale sign you can rely on is uneven wear and tear on your front tires. If you notice an area of either tire is wearing away faster than the other, then chances are your alignment is off. It’s best to get a tire rotation service once a season to keep the tread even and have the mechanics make sure your car is in good shape. Low or high air pressure can cause a whole slew of problems for your tires too. If they are too high, they may warp out of shape, will wear away faster at the tread, and, if high enough, may actually blow out. This will also make your drive rather rough, as you’ll feel every bump and crack in the road. If they are too low on the other hand, your ride will have more of a sway to it since the tire will bounce much more. Check your tires regularly and Schedule an Appointment with AAMCO Colorado to see if the tire pressure is even on each one.
The suspension is what keeps your tires in contact with the road, and considering your tires both steer and stop you, your suspension system is sort of the unsung hero of the auto world. If something in your suspension has given out, you should notice some drastic differences in how the vehicle both feels and handles. The vehicle may lean heavily to one side, bounce up and down multiple times before settling, or you can feel the jolt of driving over potholes, curbs, and bumps. If your suspension is giving you trouble, there are only a few major parts which should give you concern. If your vehicle uses leaf spring, one or more may be cracked, bent, or damaged. The suspensions’ shock absorbers may be broken or damaged. Over time, the coil springs tend to lose tension, especially through rough and repeated use. Your sway bar, ball joints, or any number of rods may also be the issue but typically these are inexpensive to fix and any AAMCO location can perform a FREE ProtectCheck® Inspection to diagnose the problem with your suspension. Find out what Suspension Repair means for your car.
Most people dread these three words when it comes to something wrong with their car, “It’s your transmission…” Those three words alone can cost you anywhere from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand. The cost usually depends on how quickly you are able to tell your transmission needs servicing and when you actually take it in for service.
Many people may notice a slight problem and let it persist over months, even years, until finally it gives out entirely. A brand new transmission can cost as much as a cheap used car, so it’s far better to have it looked at early on by a mechanic whenever you bring your car in for maintenance just to keep an eye on it.
When a transmission start to break down, the teeth on the gears are typically what goes out first, especially when a less experienced driver is behind the wheel.
It begins with having a more difficult time changing gears–gear teeth can be chipped, stripped, and ground away over time. This can cause your vehicle to slip out of gear and lose power, both of which are noticeable while driving. However, if the gears are slipping fully out of place then you have waited a little too long to get your transmission checked.
Another factor may simply be your transmission’s fluid. If it is low or dirty, you may notice your transmission acting funny or overheating. If the oil is low, be sure to check and make sure there are no leaks occurring. If the oil is dirty, scan the old oil and see if you find any particulate matter inside of it, especially metal. This may hint toward your gears being damaged.
Finally, and the only problem you should actually hope for, your vehicle may simply be too cold to drive. If you notice your transmission is having a difficult time getting into gear, out of gear, or makes any number of odd noises, and it’s deathly cold outside, you should probably let your vehicle warm up.
Not giving the transmission fluid enough time to warm up means the fluid will not be able to do its job properly, and that can cause you big problems down the road.
Your brakes are one of a few parts on your car where you can intimately feel, smell, and hear whether or not they are working properly. We’ve all smelled brakes being overused by someone going down hill, we’ve all heard odd squeaks and squeals when stopping, and we’ve all felt the brakes being overly sensitive as well as being less responsive.
There can be a great number of factors involved with your brakes giving you trouble, and many of them are sadly outside of your direct control.
Weather and the elements play one of the biggest roles in how your brakes are going to react. Whether it’s raining, sleeting, snowing, hailing, or bone dry, your brakes can become wet, icy, and dirty, all of which will cause them to make odd noises or not respond as intended.
However, you can always give yourself a brake check to find out how well they are actually responding. If you notice anything off, simply pump the brakes a few times. Often enough pumping your brakes will clean away any grim, dirt, or moisture. If you do this and it doesn’t help, or the weather isn’t bad, you may actually have a problem.
Thankfully, brakes aren’t the most expensive problems to fix and many times you may only need to replace the brake pads. This is so long as you replace them in a timely manner. Driving on worn out brake pads will only further stress the braking components, and most importantly, the disks or drums the vehicle uses which can be rather expensive to fix.
Find out what a brake service consists of.
At AAMCO Colorado, we want you to enjoy driving as much as possible. More importantly though we want you to be safe on the road. If you live in Colorado and suspect that you need a Transmission Service, Radiator Repair, Brake Repair, or any other Auto Repair, please contact your local AAMCO Colorado Location to schedule an appointment. We guarantee our services with the Best Nationwide Warranty. Learn more now.
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"The guys were very professional and help keep the cost of repair to the lowest possible amount. Will take my truck back to them in the future." -Gloria, Google+, March 2013
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