Auto Service: Why You Need to Maintain Your Car

Welcome to my blog. My name is Ken. One day, I was driving home from work when the engine in my car failed. While I waited for the recovery truck to arrive, I realised I didn’t have a clue what went on underneath the bonnet of my car. I signed up for an auto service course at my local community college, so I could gain the skills I needed to properly maintain my car and repair it if something when wrong while I was on the road. I wanted to start a blog to pass on these skills to other people so that they can look after their automobiles.

Stuck in Your Driveway? Three Things to Check to Try and Get Moving Again


Something always seems to go wrong when you're in a hurry. Maybe you're late when trying to pick the kids up from school, or trying to get to the bank before it closes. So perhaps it's not surprising that you have jumped into the car, turned the key, and nothing has happened. What next? Where do you begin when trying to figure the problem out?

Narrowing It down

It's likely that an electrical issue is causing you to be static, rather than mobile. You need to have a look at one of three different components to try and resolve the problem. All of these components work together when all is going well.

Checking the Battery

Nothing happens without a battery in good working condition, so this is the place to start. Usually, they last for quite a number of years, but they will nevertheless need some servicing from time to time. The battery stores power, which is used primarily to start the vehicle from cold, but it can only store a certain amount of power and relies on the other components for topping up. If it sounds as if the car is making a very half-hearted attempt to start when you turn the key, it may well be that the battery is flat. Get somebody to jumpstart the vehicle if you can, but if you find that the problem subsequently reappears, then the battery is not able to hold a charge and will need to be replaced.

Is the Alternator Working?

The alternator, on the other hand, is the component that charges the battery by converting the power of the engine. It will need to be in good working order once you've jumpstarted the car, otherwise the engine will die almost immediately. This is because the alternator won't be charging the battery, even though the engine is running and the battery by itself is certainly not powerful enough to maintain charge to the moving engine.

Is the Starter Stuck?

The problem may also be linked to a third component, which is the starter. This device is meant to receive power and then kick the engine itself into motion. If you hear a "click" when you turn the key in the ignition, this could signify that the starter motor has jammed. One way you can try and relieve this right now is by leaving the car in gear and then gently rocking the vehicle back and forth. This may free up the starter motor and you could be on your way.

Changing the Battery

If your car battery is some years old, it may be a good idea to replace it anyway so that you don't run into these challenging problems again tomorrow.


7 March 2017