MAR
11

20 Things Fort Wayne Drivers Should Do After a Car Accident

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auto insurance repair Fort Wayne

1. Stay calm. Try not to panic. Be courteous.
2. Check yourself and others involved to see if there are injuries. In some states, failing to render medical aid is a crime.
3. Call an ambulance (911) if there are injuries that may need treatment.
4. Turn your hazard lights on.
5. If you keep flares and warning triangles in your vehicle, use them to alert other drivers in the area. North Wells Service Center recommends that all drivers keep safety devices stored in their vehicle along with a first aid kit.
6. If the accident is not serious, and the car(s) involved are in the street, move them off the road if possible. But make sure you don't move them so far that you could be accused of leaving the scene of the accident.
7. Call the local Fort Wayne police department regardless of the seriousness of the accident. If there is no documentation of the accident, you can't file a claim.
8. Don't admit fault.
9. Write down important details about how the crash occurred while it is fresh in your memory. If you have a mobile app for your auto insurance, it probably provides an easy way to enter this information.
10. Exchange contact and insurance specifics with the other driver(s) involved.
11. If there are witnesses, get complete contact information.
12. Take photos of the collision with your phone or other mobile device.
13. If the other driver is not the person listed on the registration, find out how they are related.
14. When police officers arrive, record their names and badge numbers.
15. Don't tell the other driver(s) anything about your auto insurance coverage limits.
16. Make sure you understand clearly what happened.(See number 9.) Be consistent when explaining the situation to police officers or your insurance agent. Don't change your story or you will lose credibility. Don't give details to anyone unless you are required to.
17. Make sure you take down the license plate numbers of the other car(s) involved.
18. Consider hiring a lawyer if you have serious injuries that may require long term care or the other driver threatens or initiates legal action.
19. File your insurance claim as soon as you can. The claim process can take a lot of time. You don't want to delay settlement unnecessarily. Save all receipts for any medical treatment or work done on your automobile.
20. If your car isn't drivable, find out if your insurance policy covers roadside assistance.
21. (This is a bonus!) Make sure you don't put your signature on any report except those required by a law officer or insurance representative.

You will probably be involved in at least one accident during your lifetime, even if you are a very careful driver. The good news is that cars are safer than ever before and the rate of fatal collisions has dropped.

If you need accident repair for your vehicle, bring it in to North Wells Service Center. If your insurance agent tells you that you have to use a certain shop, check the laws in your state. Many states prohibit insurance companies from requiring you to use their contracted facility. You also want to be careful that your service center doesn't use inferior parts that may void your warranty.


FEB
3

TO BUY ON LINE VS BUYING LOCAL

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 Many times I'm ask what the difference is between INTERNET purchasing and purchasing from me or another local business so I'm going to give you my answer.

When you buy from a local business you first of all usually know them. We (the local business) are there for you at all times. We take care of any warranty issues you may have. We go above and beyond to take care of you.  We make sure you are only paying for what you need not some kit that has more than you need or will use. We make sure you are getting quality items that have a warranty, nationwide in our case. I think you get the idea.

When you buy from the INTERNET first who are they ?? When you have a problem who do you contact and how long will it take to get your problem taken care of ?? Is what they are selling you quality that will last or is it Tim's of Taiwan ?? Who is going to pay for the item to reinstall the item that has failed ??  

This is just a few of the problems I have seen. I have seen where it took 6 months to get an issues taken care of. 

So when you thing about the whole picture, is saving a couple dimes really worth it it the long run and the headaches ?


JAN
6

WINTER IS HERE. ARE YOU PREPARED ??

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 Now that the cold weather is here we just wanted to suggest a few things.

1) Pack a small survival bag and put it in your trunk. In the bag have a blanket, some snacks, a flash light, etch..

2) Have a good set of battery jumper cables in your trunk in case your vehicle does not start and needs a jump start.

3) Make sure your antifreeze test to at least-35*, and all fluids are filled.

4) Make sure you have washer solvent for the windshield that is at least -20* so it does not freeze on the windshield when trying to clean the windshield. 

These are just a few things. If you have any questions please call us. If you have anything to add please do.

DEC
15

5 Tips for Buying Used in Fort Wayne

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1. Ask for service records. Most owners who document regular maintenance service take care of their automobile.

2. Inspect the vehicle thoroughly. Check for uneven tire wear, alignment problems, suspension issues, strange sounds and funky odors.

3. If everything checks out up to this point, bring it to North Wells Service Center for a thorough used car inspection. Your friendly,honest North Wells Service Center service specialist can give you a heads up on any pressing issues or emerging problems that will need to be addressed eventually. If the seller won't let you do this before you buy, move on.

4. Buy a CarFax report. This will show any major collisions and title status concerns including whether it is a salvaged vehicle. You don't want a car that was underwater for a week after Hurricane Sandy.

5. After you buy, stay on top of regular maintenance (and save the records). North Wells Service Center will help keep your car running well and you will enjoy not having a car payment.

OCT
14

Question: My check engine light is on and my boyfriend thinks he can get the code read and know what part to replace to fix my automobile. I say it’s not that uncomplicated. Who’s right?

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North Wells Service Center Answer:
Good news – you are! Just look at it logically: there are hundreds of things that can go wrong with your automobile. Some are simple and some are quite complicated.

Let’s take a step back. Over 80% of engine functions are computer controlled. The computer receives critical information from dozens of sensors. When a sensor reading is out of range, a trouble code is entered in the computer and the Check Engine Light is illuminated.

It’s a common misconception by Fort Wayne car owners that the trouble code will tell you exactly what is wrong. For any given trouble code, there are any number of faults that would trigger the code. For example, a code indicating a misfire on cylinder three could be due to a bad spark plug, a failed coil, ignition problems, compression issues, etc. Each of those possibilities requires additional important diagnosis to confirm or rule out a cause. Once a trained North Wells Service Center service specialist with state-of-the art diagnostic tools and extensive research databases is able to nail down the problem, then he can set about getting it corrected.

A complicated diagnosis may take some time. Your boyfriend might be tempted to bypass a diagnosis charge by taking a trouble code reading with an inexpensive scan tool and start replacing parts. He might get lucky, but chances are you’ll end up spending more time and income than if you went to a professional with the right equipment.

A final word – a flashing Check Engine Light indicates that a condition exists that could lead to serious, pricey damage. Fort Wayne motorists should get to their service center or North Wells Service Center in Fort Wayne right away. A steadily illuminated Check Engine Light is less urgent so you can get it checked at your convenience. But keep in mind that a minor issue today can become more serious for Fort Wayne auto owners if left unresolved.

Give us a call

SEP
17

WHEN SHOULD TIRES BE REPLACED ?

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That is a critical question for car owners. As we discuss the matter, keep in mind that one of the critical jobs of your tire tread is to move water & snow.. The channels in the tread act as passages for water & snow to escape from underneath the tire. The deeper the tread, the deeper the channel – and the more water & snow that can be evacuated. This gives you better traction.

When enough water can’t be moved from underneath the tire, the tire can ride on the water – often called hydroplaning. The tire is literally not contacting the road but rather is “floating” on the water so there is little traction and the automobile can slide.

So somewhere between a brand new tire and a bald tire lies the point at which the tire should be replaced.  Tire manufacturers are required to mold a tread wear bar into the tire. This bar appears across the tread when the tire is worn down to 2/32 of an inch. Fort Wayne auto owners can easily do the quarter test. Insert a US quarter upside down into the tread. If it covers George Washington’s head, you have more than 4/32 of an inch of tread. If George's head is not covered you need new tires. A new tire has 11/32 of an inch tread depth.

Studies have shown, that there is a key difference in stopping distances for motorists in dangerous wet  conditions with tires that have less wear. For example, in controlled, wet conditions a vehicle with 4/32 of an inch of tread traveling at highway speeds was able to stop in about 85 feet less distance than the same car with tires with 2/32 of an inch of tread. That could easily be the difference between a safe stop and hitting the automobile in front of you.

Stop by and we'll inspect your tires with you.

SEP
10

WHAT DOES A “GDI” ENGINE MEAN

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GDI stands for Gasoline Direct Injection. It’s a type of fuel injection system that is becoming very popular on modern engines.

Let’s talk about the two most common forms of fuel injection. Port Fuel Injection has been common for the last several decades.

With Port Fuel Injection, there is a Fuel Injector just outside the cylinder on the engine:
• The fuel injector squirts a bit of gas into this area just before the intake valve opens. This small amount of gas keeps the back side of the valve clean so the engine will idle smoothly.
• When the valve opens, air enters the port and mixes with the gas and then flows passed the valve and into the engine
• The gas and air mixture is compressed by the piston
• The spark plug fires, igniting the gas which pushes against the piston thus powering the engine

With Gasoline Direct Injection the process is a bit different:

• First, there is no port outside the cylinder
• When the intake valve opens, air is drawn into the cylinder
• The air is compressed by the piston
• At the correct time, the engine management computer signals the fuel injector to spray gasoline directly into the cylinder (hence, Gas Direct Injection). It does not spray onto the valve to keep it clean. By not spraying on the valve, carbon builds up on the valve causing rough idle, hard staring, lack of power, poor gas mileage
• The pressurized gas and air are ignited by the spark plug, powering the engine.


So why did auto manufacturers move to GDI? Well, by injecting the gas directly into the engine, the management computer is able to time the injection event more precisely. Also the gas sprayed directly into the engine cools the compressed air enough to allow for better combustion.  

Now these two types of fuel delivery systems call for different kinds of fuel injectors. Port fuel injectors squirt their fuel at 40 to 65 pounds per square inch – that’s like the pressure in a bicycle tire.

GDI injectors operate at over 2,000 pounds per square inch. Of course it’s always important to keep your fuel injectors clean – but it’s even more essential for GDI injectors. When they become contaminated, they sway performance and fuel economy.

Speaking of fuel system cleaning, different cleaners and cleaning processes are required for GDI engines. Intake valves get a fair amount of carbon build-up over time. With port injection, as previously mentioned gasoline flows over the valve when it opens to let in the gas and air. This has a cleaning effect – which doesn’t occur with GDI. So pouring a bottle of fuel system cleaner in your gas tank will not reach the backside of those intake valves. A professional fuel system cleaning process at North Wells Service Center in Fort Wayne will take care of that concern for Fort Wayne car owners.
 

SEP
2

Vent Cleaning

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Ever get musky odors coming from your car’s air vents?  Moisture can usually accumulate in the air conditioning/heating ventilation system allowing mold, mildew, fungus, and bacteria to grow.

Disinfecting and deodorizing is a straightforward process. Depending on how bad the problem is, there are a couple of approaches North Wells Service Center may take to get rid of the unwanted smells. For mild situations (especially on newer vehicles), a special deodorizing disinfectant is introduced into the ventilation system. This may be an aerosol or a mist application.

The treatment kills the offending organisms and deodorizes the system. Sometimes in older vehicles, a good deal of mildew or other microorganisms can grow on the air conditioning evaporator, which is housed in the heating/air conditioning air blend box behind the dashboard. In cases like this the tech fills the blend box with disinfecting foam that can eliminate stubborn organisms and return a fresh, clean scent. In all of this, don’t forget your cabin air filter. This is the important filter that cleans the air coming into the passenger compartment of your vehicle.

Changing the cabin air filter as needed can actually prevent further contamination problems downstream. If you are experiencing any unusual odors, sounds, vibrations, etc., talk with us. We can recommend the next steps to discover what the issue is and what it will take to set it right.


AUG
18

HOW DO YOU KNOW WHEN TO GET A WHEEL ALIGNMENT ?

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The first things drivers usually notice is the steering wheel is off center or the vehicle will pull to the left or the right.  The next thing is the tires will wear unevenly usually on either the inside or outside edges.


When  wheels are properly aligned they all point in the same direction. When they are out of alignment, most motorists notice a couple of things. First the automobile pulls to one side when driving. It could be slight or pretty severe. If your wheels have been out of alignment for a while, you’ll also start to see uneven tire wear – the shoulder on either the outside or inside of the tire is worn down more than the other.

A whole bunch of steering and suspension components are joined together. Everyday Fort Wayne driving can cause  wheels to go out of alignment over time just from the joints loosening up. That’s why most car makers recommend an alignment check every couple of years. Depending on where you live or the conditions you drive in (off-road driving, harsh Fort Wayne winter conditions, poor pavement, etc.) – an alignment inspection every year at North Wells Service Center may be called for.

Suspension and steering components wear over time as well which can lead to dangerous driving conditions or loss of steering if the steering components would break . Of course, a big bump like hitting a curb or pothole can knock a wheel out of alignment or damage a an important steering or suspension part.

Your friendly,honest North Wells Service Center technician will inspect your tires for uneven wear. The type of wear provides clues for what might be wrong. Undercar parts are inspected for wear and damage. The alignment machine will provide a reading of how each wheel is aligned. The reading is compared with the alignment settings recommended by the auto manufacturer, and then the tech makes the necessary adjustments and repairs to bring your wheels back into alignment.

Now putting off a wheel alignment can get expensive for car owners because of tire wear: a bad alignment can chew through a tire pretty quickly. If you see uneven tire wear, if your steering wheel is off center, or your automobile pulls to one side ask call us  about getting an alignment check.

Give us a call 260-483-4438


AUG
5

Question: My friend just had a very pricey transmission repair in Fort Wayne. How can Fort Wayne drivers like myself avoid transmission trouble?

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Next to your engine, your transmission is the most expensive component in your vehicle – so you and your fellow Fort Wayne auto owners want to do all you can to avoid expensive transmission repairs.

Transmissions are cooled and lubricated by transmission fluid. This pressurized fluid is directed through small passages to effect gear changes. When transmission fluid gets old and contaminated, the small passages can become plugged which adversely affects shifts. The dirty fluid circulating in the transmission can eat away at essential gaskets and seals causing detrimental internal leaks that also hurt shifting. This is why some manufacturers recommend that transmissions be serviced from time to time. The interval varies by vehicle, so check your owner’s manual or with your friendly,honest North Wells Service Center tech about your transmission service recommendations.

Old, detrimental contaminated fluid is removed and new fluid is installed. Keeping up with the auto manufacturer's recommended service schedule helps prevent harmful internal damage that may result in an expensive transmission rebuild. Let North Wells Service Center help you extend the life of your automobile and prevent pricey repairs with recommended preventive maintenance service.


North Wells Service Center (260)483-4438
522 Wallywood Drive Fort Wayne IN 46808-1545