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Category Archives: Blog

Fuel Saving Tip: Slow Down Around Gig Harbor

There's not much we can do about the price of gas in Gig Harbor Washington, but we do quite a bit about how much we use as we're driving on our Gig Harbor streets. Our driving habits can dramatically affect our fuel economy. The first thing we can do is watch the ‘go-pedal'. Hard acceleration just sucks the gas. Gently leave stop lights and plan lane changes so you don't need to floor it. That can save you hundreds of dollars a year. Go a little slower on the freeway to Gig Harbor. Once you're going more than sixty-five miles an hour your fuel economy starts to drop dramatically. Leave early so you don't need to rush to be on time. And cruise control is your friend - steady speed uses less gas. Plan errands ahead. Make fewer trips by combining errands. Hey at current gas prices, a lead-foot might as well be a gold foot

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Differential Service in Gig Harbor, Washington - What You Need To Know

Scratching your head? Don't worry, if you don't know what a differential is - you will in a moment. That fact is that if you drive a car anywhere in Gig Harbor, Washington, you have a differential. Whether your vehicle is front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive, you have a differential. Some Gig Harbor auto owners might even have two or three. Not surprisingly, a differential's job is to compensate for differences. Specifically the differences in wheel speed when turning. For instance, imagine taking a corner near your Gig Harbor, Washington home. Your inside wheel has a shorter distance to travel than the outside wheel as you turn the corner. That means that your outside wheel has to turn faster to keep pace with the inside wheel. The differential allows the wheels to turn at different speeds while still providing power to your vehicle. Without a differential, Gig Harbor auto owners' tires would scrub and hop along the pavement during turns like the e ... read more

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Diesel Maintenance For Washington

At Mackert Automotive we hear from a lot of people who are excited about the new diesel engines that will soon be available in passenger cars and SUV's. But our Washington friends are often curious about the preventive maintenance requirements. People may not know that diesel engines have long been used extensively in Europe and Asia. In fact, in some markets, there're nearly as many diesel powered passenger cars as there are gasoline. Here's who's announced or is expected to announce new diesels for North America: BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Volkswagen, Nissan, Honda, Toyota, Hyundai and Subaru. Of course, the US auto makers will be expanding their diesel offerings as well. Diesels will become a very big deal here in Washington. You may ask, why has it taken so long getting to Washington and North America? There are a bunch of reasons like fuel tax policies and such, but the biggest hurtle was that Washington diesel fuel had a high sulfur content - too h ... read more

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Automotive Detective Work In Gig Harbor

There's a reason we use the word "diagnose" when we talk about fixing cars in Gig Harbor. Figuring out what's wrong with your car, truck, SUV has a lot of similarities to figuring out what's wrong with someone who is ill. Vehicles are a mass of complex systems that can produce a variety of symptoms when something goes wrong. As with human diagnoses, a specific symptom may be indicative of a number of problems, and figuring out the specific cause takes training and experience. Sometimes the diagnosis of your car, truck, SUV's trouble comes down to a matter of trial-and-error. This can be frustrating for Gig Harbor motorists because time and money are on the line. You may feel you should only be paying for repair work. Of course, you only want to pay for the right repair - and a proper diagnosis is part of getting it right. Like at the Gig Harbor doctor's office - some of what you pay for is the doctor ... read more

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Fuel System Cleaning at Mackert Automotive in Gig Harbor for Better Performance

A fuel injector is a valve that delivers fuel to a vehicle's engine. It has to deliver the precise amount of fuel, to precisely the right place, precisely when the engine needs it. The fuel also has to be mixed with air before it can burn in the engine. Fuel injectors are engineered to spray fuel in a specific pattern into the engine. (The pattern varies by engine type and design.) In order to achieve these spray patterns, the fuel must be pressurized. The pressure in a fuel injection system varies depending on its type. Many gasoline engines use port injection systems, which operate with a pressure of 60 pounds per square inch. Newer direct injection systems operate at 10 to 30 times that pressure. Some diesel passenger vehicles have fuel injectors that operate at 30,000 pounds or more per square inch. Vehicles have one fuel injector for each cylinder in the engine. Your vehicle's control computer constantly monitors the engine and various sensors in the ve ... read more

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Odometer Rollback On Your Gig Harbor Washington Auto

How do Gig Harbor car owners know if an odometer is telling the truth? Well, back in '86, Congress passed the Truth-in-Mileage Act to protect Washington consumers against mileage fraud. It says a Washington seller must certify the mileage reported is the Actual Mileage. To have your odometer checked in Gig Harbor Washington, stop by Mackert Automotive: If it isn't, the seller must say why; like maybe the odometer is past its mechanical limits. Some older odometers only go to 99,999 miles and then start over at 0. Or, the odometer has been tampered with, broken or replaced. If the seller tells you the mileage isn't accurate, there's not much chance of putting a good number to it; And there's the unscrupulous seller who claims the reading is true, but it's not so. What can Gig Harbor drivers do? First, you can go to www.CarFax.com, where for a small fee, they'll give you a comprehensive vehicle histo ... read more

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The Right Fluids for Your Vehicle

Gig Harbor drivers' current vehicles have over a century of engineering behind them. They have evolved into complex and powerful machines. Developments in their engines, however, have coincided with advances in many other vehicle components, including the fluids. It's vital for Gig Harbor drivers to always use the right type of fluid for their car, truck, SUV. Your service adviser and your owner's manual are resources for auto advice on exactly what types of fluid your vehicle needs. Improper fluids can damage your vehicle and void your warranty. Some of the fluids that have changed significantly in recent years are cooling system fluid, brake fluid, transmission fluid and motor oil. Each of these comes in many varieties now, and it's important to know exactly which one your car, truck, SUV needs. Cooling systems were once made of iron, steel and rubber. One coolant could be used to protect all of these mater ... read more

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Fuel Saving Tip: Auto Myths Around Gig Harbor

With high fuel prices in Gig Harbor Washington comes lots of gas saving advice. Some of it, like what you hear on Mackert Automotive.com, is really great. Some is myth. And some is just designed to prey on Gig Harbor Washington people desperate to save some money on gas. >When you get one of those e-mails that's going around telling you how to save gas, try to think it through. Does it really make sense? Does it defy the laws of physics? Do some research on the internet or ask your Gig Harbor Washington service advisor at Mackert Automotive. There aren't any magic pills you can drop in your gas tank and the government hasn't suppressed a device you can clamp on your fuel line to make your car run on air. Not even in Gig Harbor! So next time you get one of those e-mails, check it out with an automotive professional. You'll get more bang for your buck with an oil change or an engine air filter replacement ... read more

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Smooth Shifting in Gig Harbor Washington: Transmission Service

So you have some exciting plans for the Washington weekend. You're going to take some of your Gig Harbor, Washington friends out on the boat for some water skiing. Of course, you've gotten the boat all ready. And you haven't forgotten about your tow vehicle. You've gassed it up and even vacuumed it out. However, there is something even more vital than the cleanliness of the interior: you want to make sure that your car, truck, SUV maintenance is up to date. Think about it - heavy interstate traffic on the way out of Gig Harbor. There's hilly terrain as you get to the lake. Some dirt roads - and it's going to be pretty hot in Gig Harbor this weekend. And all the time you'll be towing around several thousand extra pounds. That all adds up a lot of severe strain on your engine, brakes and transmission. Let's just consider the transmission. It's going to be working overtime, spending more time in lower gears. The internal transmissi ... read more

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Keeping Your 'Old Faithful' Auto Running

At Mackert Automotive we've had a lot of Gig Harbor, Gig Harbor, and Gig Harbor clients asking how they can make their vehicles last longer. These questions are actually a reflection of a trend that's been building for several years in Washington. The median age of personal vehicles is now over nine years. And 33 percent of all vehicles on the road have over 75,000 miles on them. It looks like it's going to keep heading in that direction for a while. With high fuel prices, a lot of Gig Harbor folks are putting off buying a new car. So let's say you're one of the average car owners in the Gig Harbor area; you've got a nine year old car with 80,000 miles on the odometer. What can you to do make it last another year or two? Let's start with the premise that there's no reason that a modern car can't run for 200,000 miles with proper care in Gig Harbor. The engineering and manufacturing quality is there. Of course, some parts will wear ... read more

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