It can be hard to let go of a vehicle you’ve relied on for years. It may have taken you through high school, your first job, college, road trips, and moves, but it can’t go with you forever. Whether it’s your first car or your fifth, don’t let nostalgia prevent you from seeing the signs your vehicle is becoming unsafe to drive.

You may have a solution for some of your car’s quirks but those little issues can eventually become bigger ones.

Making Lemonade From Lemons

Are you familiar with the term “lemon” when discussing cars? It refers to a car with manufacturing defects that prevent it from functioning, or to a car that suddenly gives its owner a lot of problems. Sometimes, with a little work, you can make lemonade out of these lemons, getting the car back to working order. Other times, the lemon is just too sour and should be discarded.

Bald Tires

Before you even get into your vehicle, take a look at the tires. Do each of them have defined treads, or have they been worn down? Is the wear on your tires even, or is one part of the tire more worn than another?

Worn, or bald, tires are not safe for driving. They have less grip on the road and are especially dangerous in inclement weather. Additionally, uneven wear on your tires could be a sign that your alignment is off, which can lead to more problems for your vehicle. Thankfully, replacing your tires and having them properly aligned is an easy fix. The Clearfield car repair team at Master Muffler can handle those issues for you.

Vehicle Moves Differently

You may be used to the shaking, pulling, or stuttering of your vehicle, but that doesn’t mean it’s okay. If your car pulls to one side, shudders at varying speeds, or otherwise doesn’t cruise as it should, it could be unsafe to drive. Pay close attention to how your steering wheel responds, and how smoothly your car operates at various speeds. Pulling can often be fixed with a tire alignment, as can shuddering. If the weird vibrations occur while idle, it might be due to your engine mounts, spark plugs, or timing belt. For Clearfield car repair in these areas, give us a call.

Temperature Gauge

Many of us only refer to the temperature gauge in winter, waiting for it to creep high enough for us to turn on the heater and successfully warm our vehicle’s cabin. It’s important to keep an eye on the temperature gauge regularly, though, to ensure your car isn’t overheating. This gauge lets you know how hot your engine is, and if it’s consistently high, your car could become unsafe to drive. To troubleshoot a high-temperature gauge, start by checking your coolant level to see if it needs to be refilled.

Smoking Under the Hood

Smoke on the Water is a classic rock song about a casino burning down; don’t let smoke under your car’s hood inspire another hit single! If you ever spot smoke or steam coming from under the hood or out of your exhaust, you could have an overheating engine or a fluid leak. You may be tempted to continue driving your vehicle until you can get to a shop, but it’s often best to pull over immediately, turn your car off, and call for roadside assistance.

Failure to Accelerate

You don’t want to risk being in a busy intersection and have your car fail to accelerate properly. It could lead to a fender bender at a green light, or a bigger collision if you’re trying to shoot the gap when turning left. If you depress the gas pedal and aren’t getting a smooth acceleration, your car is no longer safe to operate. This could be a sign of numerous issues, including a faulty fuel line, worn spark plugs, or simply a clogged air filter. Whatever the cause, our Clearfield car repair experts can assess your vehicle and work on a solution. 

Strange Sounds

It’s said that when kids are being quiet, it usually means they’re up to no good. The opposite is usually true with your vehicle, though. The last thing you want is a noisy car, whether it’s squealing, grinding, or clanking. These strange sounds could be related to failing brakes, trouble in your steering, or a hole in the exhaust system. Whether minor or major, you’ll want to get your vehicle checked to ensure it’s safe to drive. 

Routine car repair can often prevent bigger issues from arising. Always be aware of how your car looks, sounds, and smells to keep it performing at its best. If you ever have concerns, contact Clearfield Master Muffler today.