Have You Checked Your Headlights?
Posted May 29, 2018 12:33 PM
Like everything in the Texas automotive market, there have been great strides in headlight technology in recent years. Texas drivers can be safer at night because of it. Good headlights improve visibility on Belton roads, enabling you to see farther. They also improve your peripheral vision, helping you to see the sides more clearly. The more you can see, the more quickly you can react to road conditions. This is because nearly half of traffic fatalities take place at night. And as Belton resident population ages, everything that helps older eyes is welcome.
Most new vehicles sold in Texas come with halogen headlamps. A decade ago, halogens were exotic and expensive. Now that they are standard equipment, the price has come way down. Many luxury cars are equipped with high intensity discharge, or HID, headlamps. You have probably seen them on some Belton roads; they're very bright and have a bluish tint.
From behind the wheel, there is no doubt that HID headlamps are the best thing going. However, many Belton drivers complain about HID lights in oncoming traffic or when they approach from behind. In fact, when the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration called for public comment, they received a record number of complaints about HIDs. This has lead to several studies - your tax dollars at work. Some expect future regulation of HID lamps.
All halogen headlamps dim over time. Your service advisor at Jones Automotive recommends that they be changed out once a year. We suggest you replace your headlamps in the fall at the end of Daylight Saving Time. It's easy to remember; when you change your clock, change your headlamps. Remember to replace all headlamps at the same time; then all your lights will be equally bright. You will appreciate it during those long Texas winter nights.
If you have an older vehicle with old-school headlamps, you might be able to get a halogen replacement. You'll be amazed at the difference this upgrade will make.
In addition to regular halogen lamps, Belton vehicles can upgrade to premium lamps that filter some of the yellow light, making a bright white light that's more like natural sunlight. This light's easier on the eyes and should improve reaction time.
Now, you may be able to step up to HID headlamps, depending on the kind of car you drive. These lamps should last the life of your car, but cost several hundred dollars a pair. If you want other Belton vehicles to think you're running HID lamps, you can even buy regular halogens that have a bluish tint. Does she or doesn't she? Only her Jones Automotive technician knows for sure.
Over time, plastic headlight covers can get cloudy or yellowed. In fact, AAA reports that nine out of ten headlights are dirty or yellowed, greatly reducing vision. In addition to helping you replace your headlamps, many service centers such as Jones Automotive in Belton, Texas, can restore headlight covers. Headlights can be restored at a fraction of the cost of replacing them.
Belton Air Conditioning Service
Posted May 23, 2018 10:19 AM
Working up a sweat is a great thing to do in a gym around Belton, but not in your vehicle. When Belton residents' vehicle AC Systems have a problem, they'll often feel it right away. The question is, how long do you put up with it? You know, the old comfort versus cost dilemma. But a more comfortable drive around Texas has a lot of benefits, and keeping the AC System well maintained can help prevent repairs.
A common cause of AC failure is water and air in the system. The system does not work as well with air in it. And water can cause rust that leads to damage of the A/C components. Also refrigerant, the stuff that makes the air cold, can leak out, reducing the efficiency of the system and making it work harder to try to cool the air. That is why periodically evacuating the air conditioning system and recharging it keeps the proper amount of clean refrigerant in the system for Belton residents, so it cools better and lasts longer.
Belton drivers should also run the air conditioner regularly, even in the winter, so that it lubricates itself and keeps the seals from drying out. The seals can crack and that leads to leaks. Your vehicle's owner's manual will have recommendations for how often to service your air conditioner. Some service centers also have this information as part of their computer databases. Your friendly and knowledgeable Jones Automotive service advisor can give you more information.
Jones Automotive Advice on What to Pour into Your Vehicle
Posted May 16, 2018 12:14 PM
Changes in vehicle design and manufacture have resulted in changed fluid requirements for our vehicles. With the sophistication of engines, transmissions, differentials, etc., it's best for Belton residents to always use the proper type of fluid for their vehicle. Using incorrect fluids can actually damage your engine.
As engines have become more sophisticated, new weights (or grades) of engine oil have been introduced. Today, there is a much wider range of weights for engine oil as well as a variety of formulations for different types of engines.
Transmission fluid, brake fluid and coolant/anti-freeze have changed because the materials that go into making the systems they protect have changed. The fluids in our vehicles generally have two jobs: to lubricate and to prevent corrosion. The fluids formulated for your vehicle are specifically designed to protect the materials that make up its engine parts. Using the wrong fluid may leave some parts vulnerable to corrosion. Further, using the wrong fluids can also void your vehicle's warranty. So Jones Automotive recommends Belton drivers follow the fluid recommendations in their owner's manuals.
Vehicle fluids, including engine oil, are also designed in special formulas for higher mileage vehicles. These formulas contain additives that help clean older engines and transmissions as well as recondition older seals and gaskets. These fluids are perfectly okay for your vehicle as long as you match the original fluid recommendations in your owner's manual. In other words, a high-mileage oil is fine as long as it is the same weight as the oil recommended by your vehicle's manufacturer.
Good vehicle care always includes proper attention to your vehicle's fluids. Understanding and using correct fluids will keep your vehicle running well and will help prevent early corrosion and wear of vital engine parts.
Talk to your Jones Automotive service advisor for more information.
Automotive Tips from Jones Automotive: Rotor Problems
Posted May 08, 2018 08:17 AM
The brake rotor, or disc, is attached to your wheel. The brake pads rub on the rotor to slow your car when you are driving in Belton.
Rotors can warp, crack or become misaligned. They can also be damaged by worn out brake pads that scratch grooves into the surface. These conditions result in less contact surface for the brake pads, leaving you with reduced braking power.
Over time and miles, rotors can also wear down below safe specifications. It is important for Belton drivers to know that simply replacing brake pads on a wheel with a bad rotor will not solve the problem. Depending on their condition, rotors may be resurfaced or replaced.
Brake noise or a pulsation in the brake pedal are signs of potential brake problems that should be addressed right away. If you have any brake concerns, please have your friendly and professional Jones Automotive tech perform a thorough inspection.
Give us a call.
103 N Main Street
Belton, Texas 76513
Know Your Towing Limits in Belton
Posted May 01, 2018 09:22 AM
Some Belton drivers figure that anything they can attach to their trailer hitch can be towed by their vehicle. Nope. If you're going to do any towing around Belton, you should be aware of safety issues, Texas towing laws and potential liability.
Understanding tow ratings is important for safe towing. A tow rating is the weight limit that your vehicle can safely tow. They calculate the tow rating for every vehicle, but different options on the vehicle can affect that rating. Belton drivers need to read the towing section in their owner's manual to get the specific tow rating for the vehicle they own.
Your trailer hitch also has a weight limit, and it may not match the tow rating for your vehicle. Your vehicle may be rated for 10,000 pounds (4,500 kg), but if you have a 2,000-pound (900 kg) hitch limit, you shouldn't be towing more than 2,000 pounds (900 kg). If you tow a 10,000-pound (4,500 kg) trailer on that hitch, it could break free and you would be liable for any resulting damages.
Another example, one popular pick-up truck has a tow rating of 10,300 pounds (4,600kg). But in the owner's manual, it specifies that a sway control device be used for trailers weighing over 2,000 pounds (900 kg) and that a weight-distributing hitch is required for trailers over 5,000 pounds (2,300 kg). If the vehicle owner tows a 6,000-pound (2700 kg) trailer without a weight-distributing hitch and ends up in an accident, the owner will be held liable for not complying with the towing requirements in Texas.
Belton auto owners also need to keep in mind that tow weights include the weight of passengers and cargo inside the tow vehicle. So if your tow rating is 7,000 pounds (3,200 kg), and you're carrying 700 pounds (320 kg) of passengers and cargo, you can only tow a trailer weighing up to 6,300 pounds (2,880 kg).
Two numbers that Belton drivers should be aware of are the GVWR and the GCWR. These codes are usually imprinted on the inside of the driver's side door. GVWR stands for gross vehicle weight rating. Take GVWR and subtract the total weight of the vehicle, and you have the maximum weight the vehicle can safely carry in passengers and cargo. GCWR stands for Gross Combined Weight Rating. Take that number, subtract the weight of the tow vehicle and the trailer, and you have the maximum weight of passengers and cargo that the tow vehicle and trailer together can safely carry.
This may seem a bit complicated, but you ignore these ratings at your own peril. If you haul or tow loads over the maximum ratings around Texas, you become liable in event of an accident.
Local Belton laws require that safety chains be attached when towing a trailer. Some Texas jurisdictions may require trailer brakes as well. Others mandate trailer brakes only in certain situations. If you are going to tow a trailer, you should find out the local Belton laws regarding trailer brakes and hitches, as well as weight and length restrictions.
To tow safely, Texas drivers also need the proper tires on the tow vehicle. Tires need to be in good condition with adequate tread, and they need to have a load rating high enough to handle the weight of the trailer. Your trained Jones Automotive tire professional can help you select the right tire to use when towing around Belton.
Your 's owner's manual is your primary source for auto advice regarding towing since it is specific to your vehicle. Be sure to read it carefully before doing any towing. And as always, keep your preventive maintenance up-to-date, and practice good car care to ensure the safety of your vehicle on the road—especially when pulling a trailer.