Maintaining your vehicle at home is a satisfying way to keep your motoring costs down. With the right knowledge and products even someone who isn't very mechanically inclined can take care of many of the smaller issues in everyday driving. Sometimes, however, car issues can be too specialized or complex for the average motorist to take care of by themselves and it becomes time to take your car to the pros. Below you'll find three major warning signs that you need to get to a mechanic ASAP, as well as some of the potential causes behind them.
Engine and Drivetrain ProblemsLet's start at the beginning. If your car won't even turn over and start up, then the rest of the problems on this list won't come into play. The simplest cause of this issue is a dead battery, which you can remedy with jumper cables, and the instructions that come printed on their packaging. If jumping the car doesn't work, you may have a larger problem with your ignition system. It's advisable to take your car into the shop at this point because finding the root of the problem will likely involve removing a few parts from your engine. Whether it's dead spark plugs or electrical problems, it's better to have it dealt with by a professional. Likewise, engine surging where the revs rise and fall can mean a problem with your fuel injectors, which are fairly deep within your motor. It's unwise to drive around with a surging engine, as this burns more gas and can cause unintended acceleration. Drivetrain issues are another major issue requiring professional attention. Everybody fears the dreaded transmission repairs, so if certain gears won't engage or they shift at the wrong times you should definitely take your car to the qualified mechanics here at Alternative Automotive.
Vibration While DrivingThis issue can be caused by damaged drivetrain components, but can also stem from misaligned wheels or unbalanced or flat tires. If you feel any vibration or shuddering as you drive along, you should get to a mechanic as soon as you can. At its worst, this issue can lessen your control over the car, potentially causing accidents. This will also wear out your tires more quickly than if everything was straight and true. Unwanted vibrations put stress on important (and costly) components like suspension and brakes while decreasing gas mileage, so it's smart to take your car in as soon as these issues develop.
Poor Braking PerformanceYour brakes are vital to keeping you safe on the road and should definitely be cared for by a professional, unless you're absolutely sure you know what you're doing. Common signs of issues with your car's braking system include squeaking or squealing when the brakes are applied, or the brakes feeling spongy and failing to slow your vehicle properly. Squealing brakes are caused by the brake pads wearing through the pad surface to the metal underneath. At this point the metal behind your brake pad is coming into contact with the brake rotor. This can be disastrous and produce unwanted heat, reduced stopping power, and cause you to have to buy new rotors as well as the relatively cheap pads. Spongey and weak brakes can mean there's a problem with your master cylinder, which converts the mechanical pressure of you pressing the pedal into hydraulic pressure to apply the brakes. In either case, it's best to have your brakes seen to by the professional mechanics here at Alternative Automotive.
I've been going to alternative automotive for 20 years. They have great service and operate with integrity!
Not a better mechanic anywhere. Period. And the best thing of all, Mike is as honest as a summer day is long. He will NEVER sell you a service or part that your vehicle genuinely doesn't need. He will even offer a cheaper idea for you if you're in a pinch to help. I own 5 cars and no one but Mike touches them. -And, I have sent many people to him and everyone of them will say the same as me.
Mike and his staff are top notch. They are professional, communicate the status of your vehicle, and are honest. I will be bringing my Mazda back to Mike and his crew from now on.
Love this crew! I wouldn?t take my car anywhere else. Very professional and diligent!
Have used them for the past four years. Honest, fast and good price.
Best experience! Explains everything even if I don?t understand. :-) Treats my car likes it was his wife?s!
Mike got me in quickly for a rattling noise, took time to explain the process to diagnose before I left my car for the day, called me by 2pm to let me know the car was fixed and took time again on the back end to explain the problem and the fix. All for an incredibly reasonable expense. This shop was efficient, courteous and highly knowledgeable. Everything you need when your sole source for getting around is broken. I strongly recommend them!
Mike and Karen are the best! We had a car that had been sitting a while that was going to be my son's first car so we had them check it out after my parents recommended them. They told us all the urgent needs and what could wait, and then fixed what was needed at a very reasonable price. Mike even spent 45 minutes showing my son and I everything about the car and how it works and tips a new driver needs to know. We learned so much! He is very knowledgeable about cars and is excited to educate others, always willing to explain why and answer my questions. Mike and Karen are also people of character who love the Lord and are quick to make things right if something seems like it isn't. We now trust them completely with all our vehicles and we are so thankful to have an honest and experienced mechanic to take care of us!
My mother had an issue with her 2009 Ford V8 Sport Trac jerking as it was driving on the highway. She took it to a dealership that wanted to replace the transmission for 6800 dollars. We heard about Mike at Alternative Automotive and took the vehicle to him. Based on his experience, he suspected right away that the truck did not need a new transmission, but merely a tune up! He tuned it up and even did a BG transmission service. Mike saved us thousands of dollars and for that we are grateful!! The truck runs great. Found a new mechanic to rely on with Alternative Automotive.
Mike is awesome! I took my car to him after having it with another mechanic for 9 weeks without getting it fixed. Mike had it working very quickly. I would highly recommend Alternative Automotive
The owners and mechanics at Alternative Automotive are very honest. I have no worries when I get repair work done or an oil change. I know they will always do a fantastic job and the cost will always be appropriate for the work done. The owner, Mike always explains what repair needs to be done, and I know it will be done in a timely manner. It is a great relief for me to be able to trust any work that is done on my vehicle. Thank you Alternative Automotive!
Great service every time.
Very good diagnostic and automotive service.
Really liked these folks. friendly, knowledgeable, and reasonably priced. I felt comfortable through the entire experience. Thanks Alternative
I am so happy that I found a reliable and professional auto repair shop in Tulsa. I was very pleased with the work done on my vehicle at Alternative Automotive. They are very honest and professional and the cost was lower than I would have paid at a dealership. I will definitely return for future jobs on our vehicles.
Karen and Mike are wonderful! Honest, thorough and quick service with kindness and smiles. My vehicle is running like it's brand new. With sincere gratitude and appreciation.
From the minute you walk into their shop, Mike and Karen will make sure you get the best treatment for both you and your car. They are very knowledgeable, and the work is second to none.
Came in to replace a door latch on an 02 Mustang. Mike quickly diagnosed that there was in issue with the hinge too, and replacing just the latch would not be a permanent fix. Excellent service, in and out in one day. Less expensive than a dealership too. Feels great knowing I now have a relationship with a great mechanic who can do anything I need to my Ford.