7 Reasons To Pull Over Immediately!

2018-07-18 07:49:14

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1. Strange Vibrations or Sounds

This could indicate a problem with your brakes, steering, tires, or suspension. Pull over, call I-86 Truck & Auto Repair at 716-665-2501 and one of our service specialists can guide you on next steps.

2. You Smell Something Burning

It may be something insignificant or a major emergency, but you don't want to take the chance of causing expensive damage to your auto or put your passengers in jeopardy. Pull over and check it out.

3. To Search for Something

Your iPhone slides between the seat and the console and you think you can pull off an amazing contortionist move and keep driving. Don't depend on your yoga/steering multitasking ability. Stop on the side of the road for two minutes and retrieve your phone.

4. Health Issue

Heart attacks and strokes can be preceded by more or less mild symptoms. If something seems amiss, pull over immediately and either call 911 or phone someone to pick you up.

5. Temperature or Oil Warning

Overheating or insufficient oil pressure is a clear and present danger to your engine. Protect your investment and pull your car over.

6. You Lose Visibility

Whether it's weather-related or not, it is extremely perilous to keep driving if you can't see the road. (This seems like a no-brainer, but some car owners think they can ride it out if they simply slow down.) Pull over slowly and carefully and either wait for a break in the fog/downpour/blizzard or remove the roadkill from your windshield.

7. You Are Dozing Off

Don't mistakenly believe you can keep your eyeballs open by sheer force of will. Pull over, recline your seat, and take a refreshing nap on the side of the road. Ah! Doesn't that feel better?


Tips To Protect Your Vehicle From Heat

2018-07-11 08:18:15

auto diagnostics and repair Falconer

When it comes to weatherizing your automobile, it seems like cold winter conditions get all the attention. However, there are some critical things drivers can do to help their automobiles make it through the hot summer months.

The cooling system needs to be in tip-top shape to keep your auto running when it's hot outside, so frequently check that the coolant reservoir is full. To schedule a cooling system service, call I-86 Truck & Auto Repair at 716-665-2501.

If you find yourself in a traffic jam, be sure to leave distance between your car and the car in front of you. Being too close to another car can overburden the cooling system because of the hot exhaust emitted from the auto ahead.

The effect of heat on a car adds up, so there are essential systems and parts that need to be monitored periodically during the hot season. Belts and hoses are exceptionally susceptible to the effects of heat. Batteries that are more than a few years old may give you lots of problems as temperatures increase, so you may want to consider having your battery's charge checked.

Keep your tires inflated to the upper range that is recommended. Tires that are under-inflated have a greater likelihood of overheating which can cause blowouts. Make sure that you only check your tire pressure when the tires are cool.

Sun shades are nifty gadgets to keep your interior protected when your automobile is parked on sunny days. Don't have one? Take your time and find a shady parking spot. There are also products that can help protect your interior surfaces from the sun's harmful rays. Tinted windows will keep the interior of your automobile cooler and preserve the leather and vinyl in your car.

Make sure that your car's emergency kit has all of the necessary items, such as a first aid kit, tools, and traffic cones. Also, include special items that will help if you are ever stranded in hot weather. Bottled water is one of the most important things you can have when stranded in the heat, so don't skimp! And have some coolant and water for your thirsty car as well.


Is Your City a Hotbed For Car Thieves?

2018-07-04 07:40:30

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The cities with the highest rate of vehicle thefts per capita may surprise you. These are the most recent rankings from the National Insurance Crime Bureau. The number in parentheses is the total number of cars stolen.

Cities With The Most Vehicle Thefts Per Capita

1. Albuquerque, N.M. (10,011)
2. Pueblo, CO (1,325)
3. Bakersfield, CA (7,176)
4. Modesto, CA (3,820)
5. Riverside/San Bernardino/Ontario, CA (25,708)
6. Anchorage, AK (2,273)
7. Merced, CA (1,605)
8. San Francisco/Oakland/Hayward, CA (29,414)
9. Fresno, CA (5,682)
10. Billings, MT (877)

Cities With The Fewest Vehicle Thefts Per Capita

Out of 382 ranked by the National Insurance Crime Bureau, here are the safest for your ride:

1. Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI (1) Seriously? Only one vehicle stolen!
2. Watertown-Fort Drum, NY (16)
3. Midland, MI (26)
4. Bloomsburg-Berwick, PA (28)
5. Glens Falls, NY (40)
6. Gettysburg, PA (33)
7. State College, PA (33)
8. Harrisonburg, VA (40)
9. Blacksburg-Christiansburg-Radford, VA (52)
10. Kingston, NY (60)

Wow! Hawaii has more to offer than sunny weather and gorgeous beaches! They should be proud of the fact that they topped the list with only one car theft last year.

Protect Yourself From Auto Theft

Be proactive about protecting yourself from vehicle theft wherever you live. The obvious things you can do are locking your doors and rolling up your windows. Here are some others steps you can take:

  • Don't assume your vehicle is safe at home. Car thieves look for automobiles that are being warmed up in owners' driveways.
  • Don't leave valuables in plain sight. If you have desirable after-market stereo parts, remove them and put them in the trunk (or take them with you).
  • Park with your wheels turned as far as possible toward the curb. This makes towing harder.
  • Only leave ignition key with valet parking attendant.
  • Park in well-lit, well-traveled areas.

Advice For Older-Model Cars

If you have an older automobile without modern anti-theft systems, use a steering column collar, kill switch, quick-release steering wheel, or brake locks. A camera baby monitor on the dashboard can cause a thief to move onto an easier mark. (Keep additional batteries in your glove box so you will always have some handy.) You can also have your VIN etched or stenciled into many parts throughout your automobile. This may deter bandits because they won't be able to strip and sell the parts as easily.

Shift It, Baby

Here is a recommendation many motorists don't think about when shopping for a vehicle: buy one with a standard transmission. Fewer and fewer Americans can drive a stick shift.

Not sure which anti-theft device is the best for your vehicle? Talk to us at I-86 Truck & Auto Repair. We can give you professional auto theft protection counsel for one of your costliest assets. Our phone number is 716-665-2501.

Brakes: Your Car's Most Important Safety System

2018-06-27 07:55:51

auto brake service Falconer

Whether you’re a fan of sports cars, trucks, or any other type of auto; I think that there is one thing we can all agree on and that’s that the automotive brake is an amazing feat of engineering. Think about how little energy it takes to press down the brake pedal yet the mechanism brings 3,000 pounds of hurtling steel and aluminum to a stop. Not only are brakes a brilliant invention, they are probably the most important safety component in a car. Just take a second and imagine if all the car brakes in the world stopped working simultaneously. Not a pretty thought. So let’s talk a little about our life-saving car brakes.

A Block of Wood

Brakes in automobiles started as simple as you can imagine although they weren’t the most effective. The first brakes were levers that would press a wood block onto the wheel. The friction of the wood on the wheel would eventually cause the car to slow down. Thankfully, the cars back then didn't have a lot of power because this braking technique wouldn’t have worked at high speeds. Like every other vehicle component, brakes began to advance and new methods and materials were developed to improve their functionality.

Disc and Drum

The birth of the disc and drum brake systems completely changed how automobiles stopped. Both of them multiply the relatively low energy required to engage the brake into exponentially more stopping power. Drum brakes were innovative when they were first introduced but had one main drawback; all of the components were covered under the drum which made cooling the brakes much more problematic. That led vehicle designers to create disc brakes that used calipers and pads to stop the car.

Most autos today use disc brakes and they’ve become very effective and efficient. With a disc brake setup, calipers squeeze two pads against a rotor that generates friction to slow (and eventually stop) the shaft rotation. The rotor is also called a disc, hence the name. Because disc brakes are much more exposed to air circulation than drum brakes, cooling them and keeping them running properly was much easier.

Brakes haven’t only become more capable but they’ve become smarter. There are now cars that have automatic braking systems that work with the car’s sensors, cameras, and radars to activate automatically if it detects something in front of the automobile. This is making driving safer for everyone. In many sports cars there are carbon ceramic brakes that are engineered to be lightweight and able to withstand the intense heat that comes from braking at high speeds.

Regardless of continuing innovation, motorists will always need periodic brake service. Come and see us at I-86 Truck & Auto Repair and we’ll ensure that your brakes are working properly for you.

Are You Ready To Embrace Autonomous Driving?

2018-06-20 08:18:44

car repair Falconer

Even if you don't live in an area where autonomous vehicles are being tested, you have probably heard a lot about them.

With all the publicity—both negative and positive—about autonomous technology, some Americans wonder if their fellow citizens are completely on board. Since it's a frequent topic of conversation, we looked into it.

The Public Has Not Embraced Them Yet

A recent survey by CareId (an automotive marketing company), found that not all Americans are sure about them.

We Still Like to Drive Ourselves

The survey found 75% of respondents would prefer to drive themselves than be transported in an autonomous car. Furthermore, if they were using autonomous transport, 64% would rather own the vehicle rather than hire it.

Recent Fatalities

Pedestrian Elaine Herzberg was struck and killed by a semi-autonomous vehicle in Arizona in March 2018. That same month, the driver of a Tesla Model X died after the car crashed and caught on fire. Tesla confirmed that the car was on the autopilot setting when the accident occurred.

Will They Be Safer?

Despite these tragedies, proponents argue that self-driving cars will make our roads much safer. Some even predict a future with zero vehicle fatalities.

Did the survey respondents believe this? 55% said autonomous technology will lower but not eliminate accidents. 24% believe the accident, injury, and fatality rates will remain the same. 51% said they would feel "somewhat" or "very" unsafe riding in an autonomous car.

Should The Government Get Involved?

When it comes to autonomous automobiles, the survey respondents favored government regulation almost 2 to 1.

Are You Ready For Them?

How do you feel about autonomous cars? Are you as nervous as some of your fellow drivers? Leave your thoughts in the comments section. We would love to hear from you.

I-86 Truck & Auto Repair provides automotive service to auto owners in the Falconer area. To learn more about our company, visit http://www.i86autorepair.com/.

A New Life For Used Tires

2018-06-13 07:52:13

Without tires on your vehicle, you wouldn't get very far. They help propel you forward and they support your car’s weight. Properly inflated tires with good tread help keep you and your ride on the road. Unfortunately, tires don’t last forever.

Every year roughly 300 million tires need to be replaced. That is about one tire for every American every year. What happens to all of those used tires? Few states allow tires in landfills. This is because they quickly pile up and trap methane which damages landfill liners. When the liners are damaged, the toxins from the tires pollute the groundwater. Lots filled with piles of old tires provide an ideal place for rats and mosquitoes to flourish. Burning tires isn't an option, as the fumes are toxic.

Recycling tires is the environmentally-responsible way to deal with old tires. Most likely the location you purchased your tires will recycle them for you. Roughly 110 products use rubber from recycled tires according to the EPA. Some of these products are artificial turf, mud flaps, rubberized asphalt, floor mats, garden mulch, and erosion control products.

Recycling used tires is not the only green option for disposal. Reusing old tires for DIY projects is an enjoyable way to give your old tires a new life. The nostalgic tire swing is just one of many approaches to reusing a spent tire. Below is a list of old tire DIY projects.

Whimsical garden planter
Archery target
Playground obstacle course
Garden furniture
Treads for outdoor steps
Dog bed
Jungle gym
Bike rack
Climbing wall
Landscaping steps
Compost container
Hose holder
Umbrella holder
Childs hammock
Horse trough
Ice chest

Need tire balancing, mounting, or rotating? I-86 Truck & Auto Repair provides services for the tires on your vehicle. (Need a caterpillar planter? Looks like a fun Saturday project.)

Thanks for visiting the I-86 Truck & Auto Repair blog.

Can You Guess the Auto Emblem?

2018-06-06 08:07:09

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Auto company symbols are not just creative representations, they may also hold some history of the automaker itself. See if you can guess the automobile company responsible for the following emblems.

Emblem Description: A women leaning forward. The garment billowing behind her looks a lot like wings.

The Spirit of Ecstasy is the official name of this Rolls Royce emblem. (The double "R" emblem would have been too easy.)British model and secretary Eleanor Thornton was the inspiration for this classic sculpture. She was the personal secretary of Baron John Scott Montagu. He was a friend of co-founder Charles Rolls. Miss Thornton and Montagu were on a ship in the Mediterranean when they were torpedoed by a German U-boat. Thornton drowned but Montagu survived. https://www.roadandtrack.com/car-culture/a16331/true-stories-behind-car-company-logos/

Emblem Description: A red ram’s head inside of a red pentagon.

Can you picture it? Dodge motors introduced this ram-inspired insignia. A popular origin story goes like this: back in the 1920’s, the ram’s head was put on radiator caps, and Walter P. Chrysler was told people would always think to “dodge!” when they encountered a wild ram.

Emblem Description: Three silver ovals, two that are arranged to form the first letter of the automaker’s name

The oval placement no only looks like the “T” in Toyota, but the company explains that the emblem also illustrates a core value. The overlapping ovals signify trusted relationships.

Emblem Description: A black ring with two blue and two white triangles inside.

This logo for BMW was originally designed in 1917 to represent the Bavarian state colors. However, subsequently someone pointed out that it resembled a propeller. Since BMW originated as an aircraft manufacturer, this reinterpretation of the emblem was deemed appropriate.

At I-86 Truck & Auto Repair in Falconer, we appreciate the artwork that has adorned autos throughout automotive history. If you appreciate trusted, affordable automotive service, call us at I-86 Truck & Auto Repair.

Are Electric Vehicles Really Better?

2018-05-30 08:09:17

pros and cons of electric vehicles Falconer

At I-86 Truck & Auto Repair, we are seeing more all-electric vehicles. Which leads us to today's topic of discussion: the benefits and drawbacks of EVs.

Pro: Electric automobiles have a lot of low-end torque. Because they’re not prone to overheating, you can run them hard every day. Which makes them prime for stop-and-go traffic. And they are super quiet which most men and women appreciate.

Con: Learn to take everything with a grain of salt, because regardless of the oft-mentioned advantages, they have a limited range. Though new EVs have a longer range, some drivers report "range anxiety." Hard-core EV proponents dismiss this psychological downside-after all, many can now go 100 miles between charges. But if you are an overly-nervous person, be sure to take this possibility into account. Your lifestyle also plays a factor. If you have an unpredictable, but critical daily timetable, an electric automobile may hamper your flexibility. (Like if you're a pet psychic who makes emergency house calls.)

Pro: Which brings us to our next point, wouldn’t it be great to never have to go to a gas station again? With a rechargeable auto, you just have to plug it in at night. But then, again, you have to plug it in at night. It's a lot like your cell phone, but you can charge your cell phone in a car charger while driving.

Con: Our next grain of salt is that it takes hours to recharge. An electric automobile would not be smart to take on a road trip, because you’d have to stop and recharge continually, and portable chargers can get pretty costly. As more charging stations are built, and automakers shorten the time it takes, this will be less of a headache.

Con: Electric cars cost $25-40K, whereas gas automobiles lease for $199 a month on the low end.

Pro: Are electric vehicles really more environmentally-responsible than their gas counterparts? If you get a rush from feeling eco-virtuous every time you climb into your vehicle, this is your automotive drug of choice. You can cruise around Falconer without polluting the air and pat yourself on the back for breaking your dependence on non-renewable fossil fuels. (Try not to worry about the cancer-causing sulphur dioxide released with nickel mining and the CO2 emitted by the EV battery factories.)

Con: Because EVs are heavier and quicker off the line, their tires can wear out faster—especially if you push your automobile. Of course, traction control mitigates some of this. Some electric vehicles require non-standard tires which can be more expensive. When you add these costs to the list price, you may have eaten up all of the savings at the gas pump.

Con: You only have so many options when shopping for an electric vehicle. Many EV owners are strictly Tesla drivers, so this is not a problem for them.

In a nutshell:


Quiet and quick
You plug them in at night to recharge
Cheaper to operate
No tailpipe emissions
Avoid the annoying ads on gas pump TV screens
High on the cool factor


Limited range
You plug them in at night to recharge
Pricey to maintain
Limited choices
They really aren't greener

Can you think of more advantages and disadvantages of EVs? We'd love to hear from you in the comments section.

When it comes to comparing Falconer auto service centers, I-86 Truck & Auto Repair comes out on top. Call us at 716-665-2501 the next time you need automotive service.

Turn Your Car Into a Mobile Office

2018-05-23 08:17:43

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Today's message is for road warriors who have not ventured technologically beyond a phone charger plugged into their cigarette lighter. Fortunately, it's never been simpler to conduct business from your car. By investing in a few well-designed devices, you can be more capable and professional while working remotely.

Get Connected

You most likely recognize that the first order of business is to connect to the internet. Most individuals have internet connection capability with their smartphones but tablets and laptops usually require Wi-fi or a wired internet connection. Mobile hotspots are Wi-fi enabled devices that allow you to take an internet connection just about anywhere. The latest car models are outfitted with mobile hotspots built in so you can always be connected through your laptop or tablet when you’re traveling. If your auto isn't equipped with one, you can choose from several after-market options.

With Bluetooth, you can connect your phone directly to your vehicle so that calls, texts, and notifications can play right over the car speakers. Plenty of cars have Bluetooth in them now and almost every smartphone or tablet is already Bluetooth enabled. All you have to do is connect your device to your car and then zero in the settings so that calls and notifications get routed through your car’s Bluetooth. Like mobile hotspots, if your automobile isn’t equipped with Bluetooth, you can pick up a third-party Bluetooth enabled car infotainment center.

Get Organized

After you have your Bluetooth and mobile hotspot functioning, it's time to tame all that paperwork. Glove box and console organizers help you organize documents and other files. Passenger seat desks provide a place to set your computer and any other office supplies. If you work in parking lots repeatedly, you may want the steering wheel mount laptop. Phone mounts hold your phone so you can check your notifications easily. Need to print or fax? Several businesses sell printers designed to be used in cars.

Low-tech Helps

One long time car accessory for traveling sales people is a handy clothes hanger which will keep a suit or dress wrinkle-free and ready for your next meeting or sales call. If coffee is your fuel of choice, you might want to invest in a wireless heated cup to keep your beverage at your preferred temperature. An air purifier will keep your auto from smelling like old french fries, and a headrest pillow makes a power nap more comfortable.

Sorry, You Can't Type Up That Report While Driving

Don't dismiss safety while having fun with all this technology. We probably don't need to remind you not to look at your phone, tablet, or computer while you’re cruising along, but we are going to anyway. (See, we just did!)

Your Most Important Device is a Reliable Car

If you travel for your position, it's important to keep up on routine auto maintenance. After all, a car full of capable tools won't do you much good if your vehicle is always in the shop. And you don't want to have a breakdown far from a reliable service center. Let I-86 Truck & Auto Repair keep you up-to-date on scheduled auto maintenance so your office-on-wheels is ready to take you safely wherever your work leads you.

Clear The Air: Replace Your Cabin Air Filter

2018-05-16 08:29:31

cabin air filter Falconer

The cabin air filter, once only found in luxury vehicles, is now an important part of the majority of late-model cars. Air that enters the inside of the car though the ventilation, heating, and AC systems passes through the cabin air filter (or filters, depending on the vehicle). The filter captures various airborne particles such as pollen and dust through mechanical means, and a layer of charcoal helps eliminate odors.

How Often Should I Replace It?

Many auto owners wonder how often their cabin air filter should be replaced. Most manufacturers recommend replacement every 12,000 to 15,000 miles, however, the air quality where you live is also a consideration. More pollution requires more frequent replacement of this filter, but that doesn't mean that only drivers in smoggy cities need to review the filter more frequently. Dusty environments, such as desert or farmland, will also cause the filter to clog faster.

Signs Your Filter Needs To Be Replaced

One signal that your cabin air filter needs to be replaced is a reduction in the air flow from your heating or air conditioning system. If you turn up the fan and hear a lot of noise without a lot of air flow, chances are that the filter needs to be changed. An unpleasant odor is another telltale tip-off that the cabin air filter has reached the end of its usefulness (or a lingering reminder that you drove the soccer carpool yesterday).

At I-86 Truck & Auto Repair, we can quickly do a cabin air filter replacement if needed. Call 716-665-2501 to make an appointment or just stop by. Thanks for visiting our blog.