Mechanical Tips for the MINI Enthusiast
Over time, we’ve discovered many particular issues related to the Mercedes and will try to advise you or alert you to some of the more frequent concerns. Some may discover a temporary fix or reason for areas of concern. Others may be more attuned to their particular model and more knowledgeable of other particular issues. Then some of the issues addressed may apply to all makes and models of cars. If you are familiar with issues EuroWerks has not addressed, feel free to bring them to our attention. We will then try to include them in our web page. Either way, we hope all will gain from these little bits of information.
How often have you told your children to stop operating the windows, or do you remember being told so by your Parents? Well, it may be a lot better and less of a nuisance than presumed. Failure to use or operate the window motors on your automobile windows may result in windows stuck and/or inoperative. Sometimes it may be as simple as the seal around the window binding to the glass. It could be you’ve spilled debris on one, or all of the window switches. It could be you’ve not used the window in a long while and condensation has built up inside the motor itself. There is a way to help you determine where your problem originates. While engaging the window switch for the selected window, listen for a click noise from inside the door panel, and/or watch for the interior dome lamp to see if it dims slightly while engaging the switch. If you observe a click noise or dimming of the dome lamp, you’ve got a good switch. In a worst case scenario, you may observe a crunching noise, stop operating the switch immediately as you likely have a failed window regulator, the mechanical mechanism that drives the window up or down.
Now, it may be the seal is binding to the window. Wrap firmly against the perimeter of the window with a closed hand while engaging the switch. Use caution, you will not break the glass but you might hurt your hand. If you find that hasn’t helped, try closing the door firmly while holding the window switch down. These little tips will frequently work. If you haven’t had luck, call us to schedule a visit or drive in and we will diagnosis your problem.
If your car is a later model, it may require specific tools and/or download of specific software from the manufacturer. At EuroWerks, we have the necessary tools and expertise to handle these repairs. For any of your service needs, feel free to call on us at EuroWerks.
Service for the consumers’ automobile is a least favored activity. It results in loss of our freedom and fear of being sold something we don’t need and may not receive if paying for. Unfortunately, due to unfamiliarity with how and what is performed, the Consumer is often hostage to the proposed service. There are reasons for service schedules and benefits to maintaining your car. If you’re uncomfortable with the shop you have service performed at or find yourself pulling into the first shop of convenience, consider the options. It’s your good money and you should feel comfortable spending it. Know that you are getting a good exchange for your good money. Find a shop you will trust and feel comfortable with giving your good money.
On Mercedes automobiles the option of a “Transmission Flush” may be an unnecessary expense and should raise a red flag to the integrity of the shop that requests performing such service. On Later model Mercedes the transmission has a fiber filter. You may flush the transmission each and every day but you will not remove the debris from this filter. If the Filter is not replaced it brings doubt of value to the expense of flushing the system.
At EuroWerks, we feel it is a good value to entirely drain the transmission fluid and replace the transmission filter at approximately 50,000-mile intervals. Though Mercedes has referred to the fluid in the transmission as “Lifetime Fluid”, we feel it’s a good value to perform 2-3 transmission services, (fluid and filter change) versus the heavy expense of a complete transmission replacement. If you are advised to simply flush the transmission without a filter replacement, you may wish to reconsider the shop you are visiting.
At EuroWerks, we look forward to many years of your trust. Here in Dunwoody, you’re not just a customer you’re our neighbor. If you have any questions or needs, feel free to call on us, this is what we’re here for, to help you!
If you experience a check engine light immediately after fueling your car, odds are you may need to purchase a new gas cap. On 1997 and later model automobiles, emission standards require containment of gas fumes that normally vented into the atmosphere on earlier model cars. If your automobiles’ computer detects a serious vacuum leak, (via a loose or missing gas cap) it will set the “Check Engine Light”.
This warning may correct itself after a short period of time. It may clear up after only three new starting cycles in some model cars. Some automobiles will require special tools and knowledge to reset the computer and clear this nuisance light. Either way, you can help to expedite the process by checking to make certain your gas cap is secure. If you find you have lost your gas cap, don’t buy anything less than an original cap from the manufacturer. Buying an “aftermarket” cap will likely leave you with the same problem and possibly a greater one, leaking fuel at the gas cap due to improper fit.
When having an emission test performed the gas cap is checked to make certain it seals properly. If advised that your cap doesn’t seat properly and you are told you will need to buy one, DON’T. Stop right there. If your car is a 1996 or later model year production, the check engine light will illuminate if the cap doesn’t seal properly. Purchasing a cap from these people may enrich them at your future additional expense. Wait to buy a new cap. Visit us at EuroWerks and we will help you determine if your car needs a cap or you may be victim to an up-sell. If you do need a new cap, rest knowing you will get the correct cap for your car.
In today’s vehicles, there is an enormous risk of damage when attempting to Jump-Start a vehicle. The electronics in today’s cars are extremely sensitive and expensive. If possible, it is recommended you don’t perform such tasks. Often, damage may occur in the most innocent of environments. The road service truck you’ve called may be well equipped to jump anything and everything. The risk is that your newer model car may not stand up to excess voltages and voltage spikes. This could lead to a further delay of days and an additional expense to repair, usually above $1,000.00. If you must Jump-Start your vehicle, be aware of the risks to the many computerized components on your car.
Where circumstances require Jump-Starting, know what you are doing. Take only a moment to familiarize yourself with location of both the positive and negative terminal locations for Jump-Starting your car. Refer to your Owners Handbook. Where possible, know the same on the vehicle that is Jump-Starting you. This could bring great satisfaction in the avoidance of damage to your car. Before attempting, make certain there is significant ventilation to avoid risks of an explosion from flammable gases emitted from either Battery. Significant moisture located only around the immediate area of the Battery is an indication of higher risks of explosion. Avoid unnecessary risks.
1. Locate and identify the positive and negative terminals on both vehicles. Note that most Jumper Cables have Red and Black-leads. The red jumper lead is for the positive (+) terminals and black for negative, (-). Position cars so cables may reach easily. Make certain cars do not touch as this may result in a grounding of electrics causing additional risks of damage.
2. With the ignition switch to both vehicles switched off, connect your Positive jumper cable to your positive battery terminal or + junction-post. Now connect the other end of the positive jumper cable to the positive terminal + or junction post on the car that is jump-starting yours.
3. Now, connect the negative, (-) black cable to your car battery or the (–) junction post, and then repeat the same on the car jump-starting yours.
4. Attempt to start your car. If the car seems to crank slowly but not fast enough to fire the engine, inspect for a good clean contact at all cable connections. Make certain the key is off on both vehicles and check in the reverse order on fitting cables to jump-start your vehicle. Attempt to start again. If the same slow crank occurs, you may need additional power to jump your vehicle. Start the engine on the other car and allow a few minutes to pass so there may be a chance to charge your battery via the other vehicles charging system. Now attempt to start your car again. If the car will not crank properly and start, it may be the battery is too weak and will require towing.
5. If all has gone well and you have successfully started your car, don’t rush to get rolling. Before removing cables, pay Close Attention!!! Switch on the headlights and blower fan to help reduce a voltage spike when removing cables. Failure to do so may cause damage to important computers in the car. Now, disconnect the negative, (-) black jumper cable from your car first, and then remove the positive (+) red cable. Make certain you don’t allow the loose cable to make contact.
6. Recognize that you may have a dead battery or failure in your charging system. If you see the battery symbol illuminated on the dash, with engine running after completing the jump-start procedure, you may have a battery and/or charging failure. Don’t expect to drive the car, as it will soon run below minimum voltage requirements and stall. This may occur in a less convenient environment. If the battery or charging system light does not illuminate, it is still recommended you have the systems inspected for proper function. Call EuroWerks to advice of schedule for visit.
Frequently, we hear comments about how poor the driving habits of the people from Atlanta are. This will be heard more when we have the Winter Weather many are unaccustomed to. In Atlanta, we rarely have a significant amount of snowfall with meaningful accumulations. Instead, we usually get the dreaded Sleet and/or Frozen Rain. Ice will bring out the worst of driving skills and our ability to exercise patience. Don’t blame it on the people from Atlanta. Most of them know better than to drive in the Ice. When you mix experience, a hilly topography, and explosive growth in the area, people of Atlanta have learned to stay off of the roads in an Ice storm. Below, I will attempt to offer some advice in driving skills for inclement weather.
Rule # One! If you must drive in such weather, be prepared! Adjust your seat, seat belts, and steering wheel to the best position for convenient operation. In ice, snow, and heavy rain, don’t expect to get comfortable. There are a lot of people sharing that attitude and they may be sliding right into your car. Plan on getting to your destination warm, dry and unharmed. As a precaution, make certain you have a set of Jumper Cables, a good Flashlight, and a couple of old Blankets, extra Socks, Gloves, and some candles. A candle can be an excellent source of heat in the small confines of a car interior.
Rule # 2.If you really must drive in inclement weather; never find cause to be in a hurry. If you start off in a hurry, odds are, you will find yourself much later and possibly injured. In all operations of a vehicle under adverse conditions, it is best to maneuver with the softest and slightest of actions on the Throttle, Brakes, or Steering Wheel. Never jerk hard on the steering wheel, brakes, or throttle. Know the limits of your ability. If that hill is too big or makes you wonder, it’s likely you will have a problem attempting the impossible. Go the long way or avoid it all together. Your well-being is more important. Don’t risk that or that of your passengers.
Rule # 3. Be doubly conscious of you and your surroundings. Pay close attention to the rear and sides of the road you’re on. Odds are you’re sharing it with someone who feels cause to be in a hurry. Slow it down. Be patient. Follow from a much greater distance. Begin braking much sooner. Don’t accelerate quickly. Depart for your destination much sooner than normal. Wouldn’t you rather arrive early than to not arrive at all?
If you really find need to drive under such adverse conditions, know yourself, your abilities and the equipment you are operating. Consider some of the car control driving courses. Allow yourself to learn how to drive through an event while your ABS “Anti-Lock-Brakes” are in operation. Know how to change a tire. Know the proper use of 4- wheel-Drive if your car is equipped. Know how to jump-start your car or a neighbor’s car. Check our “Favorite Links” site for address to some of the local Driving School Classes. At EuroWerks, LLC, your safety is our first concern.