How to Detect Issues With Your Vehicle

03 December 2015 / Lindleys Autocentres

Unfortunately, your vehicle will face mechanical or technical faults at some point in its life, and this can happen at any time. And with the winter months approaching, your vehicle’s reliability is really put to the test. However, although they can occur at any moment, all vehicle issues have something in common; they’re usually preceded by warning signs. It’s just a matter of knowing what to look and listen out for.

 

Cold Temperatures

Temperatures below freezing can have a serious affect on how your vehicle’s mechanicals and electronics perform. If your vehicle’s engine won’t start, it’s a strong possibility your battery has gone flat or your start motor has become stuck. Take a look at charging your car battery or receive a jump start from a healthy car. If it happens for the second time, it may be your alternator that isn’t charging the battery as it’s suppose to - if this is the case, seek assistance from a local garage.

 

Brakes

Your brakes are arguably the most essential safety feature, no matter the vehicle. For this reason, it’s important to keep an eye on the condition and wear rates - especially during the winter, as grip is at its lowest. Things such as unusual grumbling noises, your vehicle pulling to one side and a ‘long’ spongy brake pedal are signs that there are problems with your vehicle’s braking system. If you come across any of these symptoms, get your car checked by a qualified mechanic as soon as possible.

 

Flaring Engine Revs

Flaring engine revs when accelerating hardly is a main giveaway that your car’s clutch is slipping. Unfortunately, if this is the case there is no cheap fix and your clutch will have to be fully replaced. Leaving your clutch unattended will result in even more harm to your vehicle, as it will damage your flywheel and affect your engine. You should take your vehicle to a fully trained mechanic as soon as possible.

 

Knocking Sound

If you notice an irregular knocking or droning sound, especially when going round corners, it could mean that your wheel bearing is worn. If left unchecked and unattended, it can cause costly damage to your vehicle’s suspension and assembly. You should take your vehicle to a fully trained mechanic as soon as possible.

 

A loud knocking sound from deep within the engine is also never good news. If your vehicle develops a loud and strong rattle, stop the engine straight away and check your oil levels. If it reads low on the dipstick, or not at all, top it up with the correct engine oil. If the knocking goes away, you have solved the problem. But if not, the vehicle needs attention as soon as possible and should be looked at by a fully trained professional.

 

Acceleration

If your vehicle’s engine seems to hesitate when accelerating, it could be a sign of a problem with your fuel system. If, in the past, you have allowed your vehicle to run on very little petrol / diesel, it may have disturbed a component in the fuel tank and caused some kind of blockage. The stuttering from the engine when accelerating could also be because of your vehicle’s spark plugs or leads have deteriorated to the point where they aren’t working correctly. If you encounter any of these problems, you should have your vehicle checked by a fully trained mechanic as quickly as you can.

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