(860) 233-5177

7 Raymond Road, West Hartford, CT. 06107

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Brake Services Performed by ASE-Certified Technicians

If you're like most people, you take it for granted that your vehicle will stop every time you press on the brake pedal. But what if it didn't? Things can and do go wrong with braking systems, so it is very important to take good care of them.

Schedule an appointment today for brake maintenance, repair and replacement services.

Your Technical Advisors

We provide sound advice from major overhauls to general checks, routine maintenance, and detailing. We'll save you time and money and reduce the stress of auto repair at affordable rates. Visit John, Brian or Andy at MODERN TIRE of West Hartford to take advantage of their combined 75 -plus years of automotive experience.

Oil and Filter Service

Some auto service centers offer just an oil change and new filter as an option. At Modern Tire of West Hartford we will also check and top off all of your other fluids and inspect the hoses, belts, tires etc.

Shocks and Struts Replacement Service

This starts with an inspection of the suspension components. Shocks last a long time and wear out slowly, so many motorists don’t notice when it’s time to change them.
              - If they’re worn or leaking, they need to be replaced.

Preferred Winter / Snow Tire and Wheel Packages

With winter / snow tires mounted on their own wheels, you can install a Winter / Snow Tire & Wheel Package yourself. When the weather changes, you're ready. When the seasons change again, your summer package goes back on. With it comes performance optimized for each season.

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MAKE AN APPOINTMENT

Our Team of technicians can have your car running like new again. We do it all through a full service shop staffed by specialists in all phases of auto and light truck repairs and service.

ASE-CERTIFIED

Our technicians at MODERN TIRE Auto Center have access to the most extensive training in the automotive industry. Furthermore, we employ ASE-certified technicians for all areas of work performed.

NAPA PARTS

We currently offer the NAPA AutoCare "Peace of Mind" warranty, providing our customers with 12-months 12,000-miles of worry-free protection on qualifying parts and labor.                                                     

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Best Local Auto Repair

Modern Tire of West Hartford
7 Raymond Road West Hartford, CT 06107 US
Phone: (860) 570-1527


Recalls Look-up by VIN (Vehicle Identification Number)

 

Coolant is the mix of antifreeze and water

A few years ago I was driving my ’85 powder blue Dodge RAM Charger with about 80,000 miles on it. I was going up a hill in West Hartford and heard a noise like a tin can rolling down the road. I looked back and saw my drive shaft bouncing down the hill. I put it in four wheel drive and drove to my West Hartford mechanic to get it fixed. What could I have done to prevent that? [Read More]

Coolant is the mix of antifreeze and water

I was on my way to work when I noticed smoke coming from my car. I pulled over and called my husband. I had to be towed to my West Hartford mechanic. He said my car had overheated. What can I do to prevent that in the future? [Read More]

Paul A. Eisenstein The Detroit Bureau

When that “check engine” light come on, there’s a good reason to get worried. Even if it doesn’t leave you stranded in an unfamiliar part of town after dark it’s likely to take a bite out of your savings, especially as recent studies have indicated automotive repair costs rose by about 10 percent last year.[Read More]

Winter in Connecticut

It’s time to inject your automobile with a dose of anti-winter aging treatment from Grill-to-Tail. Your first step is to schedule an appointment with our shop advisors.

Check out our promotional page and take advantage of the discount coupons on goods and services at your next service visit to Modern Tire of West Hartford.

 

 

 

 

 

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Oil Change West Hartford

We welcome your feedback and comments on our quality of work and customer service.

Industry News

Online resources for recalls and other important safety tips

TIA has released Tire Safety Starts with TPMS. This is the second video in TIA's consumer education series. The first video, Tire Safety Starts with Proper Tire Repair, was released earlier this year.[Read More]

Increasingly, automotive repair and service is becoming a high-tech profession, note officials with the non-profit National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). Old images die hard, but yesterday's mechanics have become today's technicians, complete with hand-held computer diagnostic tools and a wall full of credentials attesting to their abilities.

In a recent poll of ASE-certified automotive technicians, over four-fifths said they used a computer on the job, more than two-thirds said they owned a computer at home, and over half said they had access to the Internet.

Cold weather can play havoc with a vehicle’s battery

Cold weather can play havoc with a vehicle’s battery, threatening starting and the ability to handle winter’s increased electrical loads.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is OBD and what are its benefits?
  2. How do I know the OBD system is working correctly?
  3. Why does it mean if the light turns on while I'm driving?
  4. What should I do if the light stays on ?
  5. What does it mean if the light is blinking?
  6. What will my technician do when I take my vehicle into the shop?
  7. My pickup tires wore out early and I had to replace them. What can I do to make my tires last longer?
  8. I was on my way to work when I noticed smoke coming from my car. What can I do to prevent that in the future?
  9. I was going up a hill in my 85 powder blue Dodge RAM Changer and heard a noise like a tin can rolling down the road. What can I do to prevent that in the future?
  10. What is power brake service and why do we need to have it done?
  11. Why isn't my air conditioner blowing cold air?
  12. My tire pressure warning light came on recently. What does that mean?
  13. What can I do to avoid a broken timing belt?
  14. What is Transfer Case Service?
  15. Water pump replacement cost
  16. When should I replace my windshield wipers?
  17. I remember my dad having the shop “pack the bearings” on the family car. Is this something I need to have done?
  18. In the rush and anxiety of everyday driving, following distance is often sacrificed for the feeling that we need to get somewhere faster.
  19. Only 1/3 of all driving is done after dark, but 2/3 of all fatal accidents happen at night.
  20. My check engine light is on and my boyfriend thinks he can get the code read and know what part to replace to fix my pickup. I say it’s not that doable. Who’s right?
  21. I'm really confused about auto service intervals for various items on my car. Help!

What is OBD and what are its benefits?

  • OBD stands for "on-board diagnostics," a computer-based system built into all model year (MY) 1996 and newer light-duty cars and trucks. OBD monitors the performance of some of the engines' major components, including individual emission controls. The system provides owners with an early warning of malfunctions by way of a dashboard "Check Engine" light (also known as a Malfunction Indicator Light or MIL, for short). By giving vehicle owners this early warning, OBD protects not only the environment but also consumers, identifying minor problems before they become major repair bills..
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How do I know the ODB system is working correctly?

  • When you  turn on the ignition, the "Service Engine Soon" or "Check Engine" light should flash briefly, indicating that the OBD system is ready to scan your vehicle for any malfunctions. After this brief flash, the light should stay off while you drive as long as no problems are detected. If so, you'll be glad to know that your vehicle is equipped with an early warning system that could save you time, money, and fuel in addition to helping protect the environment!
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What does it mean if the light turns on while I'm driving?


  •  If the light comes on and stays on, the OBD system has detected a problem. Your vehicle might have a condition that wastes fuel, shortens engine life, or causes excessive air pollution. If left unaddressed, these conditions could also damage your vehicle and lead to increasingly expensive repairs. For example, OBD can identify a loose or missing gas cap (which wastes fuel and contributes to smog) or engine misfire (which can lead to severe or permanent engine damage).

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What should I do if the light stays on?

  • There is no cause for panic. The vehicle is just telling you to seek attention soon. When you reach your destination, make sure the gas cap is not loose or missing. Always turn off your engine when refueling. If the light does not go out after a few short trips following gas cap replacement or tightening, have your vehicle serviced by a qualified repair technician soon! Delaying assistance could lead to more expensive damage
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What does it mean if the light is blinking?

  • If the light is blinking, a severe engine problem such as a catalyst-damaging misfire is occurring and should be addressed as soon as possible. You can still drive safely, but should minimize your time on the road. Try not to drive the vehicle at high speed or with excess weight (such as towing or carrying heavy equipment).
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What will my technician do when I take my vehicle into the shop?

  • Ask your repair shop if they employ trained OBD technicians. A modern repair shop or dealership should have an OBD scan tool (a small, hand-held scanning device) to diagnose the cause of your vehicle's problem. These technicians will have the proper tools and will know best how to diagnose your vehicle.

    The technician will connect the scan tool to your vehicle's computer (usually through a connector under the dashboard) and download information that can pinpoint the problem. The technician can then repair the vehicle based on manufacturer recommendations. OBD actually helps repair technicians do their job more quickly and reliably, helping you avoid unnecessary repairs and trips back to the shop.
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My pickup tires wore out early and I had to replace them. What can I do to make my tires last longer?

  • Premature tire wear – is very common for West Hartford drivers. Here are several ways to lengthen the life of your tires:

    First, tires lose air pressure over time, so check them at least once a month and fill them up as necessary. A sticker on the driver’s side door jamb has the recommended pressure.

    Tire rotation is also important for CT motorists. Your front tires take the brunt of stopping and steering forces so they wear faster than the rear tires. They should be rotated regularly so that all four tires wear more evenly. Talk to us at ModernTire of West Hartford in West Hartford.

    Out of balance wheels can also cause a tire to wear too fast. West Hartford motorists who feel a vibration in their seat or steering wheel may have a wheel out of balance. 
    Finally, bad wheel alignment and worn or damaged suspension can chew through a tire very quickly. Ask your friendly Tire of West Hartford service professional to have your tires inspected for signs of premature wear. Your service professional will be able to pinpoint the cause and get it taken care of.

    The technician will connect the scan tool to your vehicle's computer (usually through a connector under the dashboard) and download information that can pinpoint the problem. The technician can then repair the vehicle based on manufacturer recommendations. OBD actually helps repair technicians do their job more quickly and reliably, helping you avoid unnecessary repairs and trips back to the shop.
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I was on my way to work when I noticed smoke coming from my car. What can I do to prevent that in the future?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Question:
    I was on my way to work when I noticed smoke coming from my car. I pulled over and called my husband. I had to be towed to my West Hartford mechanic. He said my car had overheated. What can I do to prevent that in the future?

    ModernTire of West Hartford Answer:
    Oh, sounds like a rough experience. Unfortunately overheating is the most common engine failure for West Hartford motorists. It’s also one of the easiest to prevent.

    The basic idea is this: you need to keep enough coolant/antifreeze flowing through your pickup engine to keep it cool. Problems come for West Hartford auto owners when they develop leaks in their systems – like in the radiator or a hose – and the coolant leaks out. Sometimes the coolant gets so contaminated that it blocks up the radiator so the coolant can’t get through. Enough of that and you end up broken down on the side of the road.

    Your owner’s manual recommends a schedule for coolant replacement. That’s because your coolant actually becomes corrosive over time and starts to eat away at the cooling system causing leaks or blockages. New coolant stops that process.

    Ask your friendly ModernTire of West Hartford service advisor about inspecting your pickup cooling system for leaks, spongy hoses and other damage. If it’s time to replace your coolant, hoses or other cooling system parts, have it done right away at ModernTire of West Hartford in West Hartford. Prevention at ModernTire of West Hartford is the key.
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I was going up a hill in my 85 powder blue Dodge RAM Charger and heard a noise like a tin can rolling the road.  It was my drive shaft. What can I do to prevent that in the future?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Question:
    I’m Doug. A few years ago I was driving my ’85 powder blue Dodge RAM Charger with about 80,000 miles on it. I was going up a hill in West Hartford and heard a noise like a tin can rolling down the road. I looked back and saw my drive shaft bouncing down the hill. I put it in four wheel drive and drove to my West Hartford mechanic to get it fixed.

    What could I have done to prevent that?

    ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:
    Now that’s quite a story. Doug was fortunate that his vehicle had a part-time four wheel drive system that would let him get home without a rear drive shaft.

    This case of the missing drive shaft” highlights the need for regular inspections. Now most West Hartford auto owners are familiar with recommendations for preventive maintenance services like oil changes and coolant replacement. What you may not know is that there are also recommendations for inspections at various intervals.

    By the time a vehicle gets 80,000 miles on it like Doug had, the owner’s manual would have called for an inspection of things like the suspension, brakes – and the drive line. Chances are that such an inspection at ModernTire of West Hartford would have revealed early signs of a worn u-joint and Doug could have had it fixed before his drive shaft went rattling down the road.

    Ask your friendly ModernTire of West Hartford service professional about the inspections your vehicle should have.

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What is power brake service and why do we need to have it done?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:
    Imagine: you pour a tablespoon of water in your hand and throw it as hard as you can. Now, suppose you suck up a tablespoon of water into a syringe, push the plunger and squirt it out. Which would go further?

    Of course it’s the water squirting out of the syringe. That’s because you pressurized the water. Your power brake system is kind of the same thing. When you step on the brake pedal, the master cylinder pressurizes brake fluid which actuates the brakes so you can stop. West Hartford motorists who don’t have enough pressure – can’t stop.

    A leak in your brake system would reduce – or even eliminate – your stopping power. Brake fluid attracts moisture which can cause detrimental leak-inducing corrosion. So a great way for West Hartford car owners to keep their brake fluid free of contaminants is to change it as recommended.

    Enough brake fluid is critical for the proper function of West Hartford auto owners anti-lock brakes, traction control and stability control systems. Your friendly ModernTire of West Hartford service advisor will survey your brake fluid level during a full-service oil change. If it’s low it may indicate that a thorough brake inspection is vital. Low brake fluid is most frequently caused by worn brake pads.

    Some of the signs of a leak are reduced stopping power and spongy or hard pedal feel. If you suspect a problem, come into ModernTire of West Hartford for a brake inspection right away.

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Why isn't my air conditioner blowing cold air?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:
    Your air conditioning system uses refrigerant to create cold air. The most common reasons West Hartford car owners lose their cold air have to do with the refrigerant.

    The first is not enough refrigerant. Refrigerant is a gas in the system and very small holes in a hose, seal or coupler can allow enough to leak out to prevent the creation of cold air.

    Another potential problem for West Hartford auto owners is contamination. Over time the inside of the rubber hoses can deteriorate and little bits of rubber can clog up various filters and other important parts of the pickup A/C system, preventing proper circulation of the refrigerant. And a component could also be worn or broken. So the first step for West Hartford motorists who can't cool their pickup is a thorough air conditioning inspection, looking for leaks and worn parts. In fact, Federal law requires an inspection before adding refrigerant. Some states do not allow topping off a leaking system.

    Once any essential repairs are made, refrigerant is added. At the same time, special oil is added to the system. This oil cools and lubricates various components as it circulates along with the refrigerant. If you have a refrigerant leak, you also have an oil leak – and it's vital that both be replenished for proper function and protection of your A/C system.

    Sometimes overlooked by West Hartford car owners is the fact that a worn serpentine belt (which drives the A/C compressor) leads to belt slippage which puts additional strain on the compressor. Replacing your serpentine belt and belt tensioner on schedule at West Hartford will extend the life of your A/C compressor and other key belt driven accessories.

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My tire pressure warning light came on recently. What does that mean?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:
    It means that one or more of your tires has low air pressure. The dashboard warning light, which looks like a cross-section of a tire with some lines in it, comes on when the tire pressure is 20% below what the automobile manufacturer recommends. So if your recommendation is for 35 psi (pounds per square inch), the light will come on when your pressure falls to 28 psi.

    It’s key to note that 20% below recommended pressure is significantly under-inflated. This means that you will be experiencing degraded handling and that your tire will be running hotter than it should. This can not only be a safety hazard, but your tires will wear prematurely and could even suffer a heat related failure.

    West Hartford car owners should not use their Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) warning light as their trigger for checking their tire pressure. They should still check their tire pressure at least once a month.

    Some West Hartford drivers mistake the tire pressure printed on the side of the tire as the recommended pressure for the vehicle. This is not the case. The information on the tire is the range the tire can handle. The correct pressure for your vehicle is on a plate or sticker on the driver’s side door or door jamb. This is the pressure your tires should have to match the engineered handling capacity of your vehicle. Please note that the pressure may be different for your front and rear tires.

    You TPMS does not have a regularly scheduled maintenance interval. However, be aware that the batteries in the sensors mounted in each wheel will eventually die, illuminating the warning light and necessitating replacing the sensor. Sensors can also be damaged by road salt and other contaminants.

    Some TPMS systems indicate tire pressures for individual wheels which will tell West Hartford motorists which tire is low – as long as the system has been reset after rotating the tires. Other systems will simply give a warning and it is up to you to check all your tires (including the spare). For more information, talk to your friendly ModernTire of West Hartford service advisor.

    The government mandated TPMS systems to reduce tire-related accidents, property damage, injuries and deaths. The automotive professionals at ModernTire of West Hartford in West Hartford recommend that you have your tire pressure checked at least once a month to maintain your safety and increase tire life.



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What can I do to avoid a broken timing belt?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer: Broken Timing Belt
    Well, a broken timing belt can lead to one of the most expensive engine repairs West Hartford car owners will ever face. The good news is that replacing your timing belt on its recommended schedule can help avoid those problems. Here’s a brief overview of what the timing belt does:

    Air is drawn into the cylinder of the engine through the intake valves. After the air and fuel mixture is burned, it’s pushed out through the exhaust valves. The timing belt, which is driven by the engine, turns the camshafts which control when the intake and exhaust valves open and close. It is critical that the opening and closing of the valves take place at exactly the right time for the engine to run properly.

    Beyond that, on some pickup engines the valves actually extend into the combustion chamber far enough that they can be hit by the piston as it moves up and down in the cylinder. When everything is timed just right – no problem. When the timing is off, the piston will slam into the valves and cause big (expensive) damage for West Hartford auto owners.

    The timing belt makes sure everything is timed just right. However, the belt does have a useful life. Beyond that it can break or slip – and that’s when the damage can be done. If your vehicle has a timing belt (some have metal timing chains) it will have a recommended interval for replacing it, typically in the 60,000 to 90,000 mile range. Be sure to check your owner’s manual or with your ModernTire of West Hartford service specialist to make sure you know when your timing belt needs to be replaced: there is a lot at stake.

    Now, getting to the timing belt requires a lot of labor so it is a costly service item, but it is certainly less expensive than repairing a damaged engine. If your timing belt drives your water pump, change them both at the same time to save labor costs down the road. Ask your ModernTire of West Hartford technician when you timing belt should be changed and get an estimate for what it will cost so you can budget for this key service.


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What is Transfer Case Service?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:

    On a four-wheel-drive (4WD) vehicle, power needs to be transferred to both the front and rear axles. The transfer case is the mechanism that makes that happen. There are many drivetrain configurations out there, so we’ll just talk in generalities.

    Trucks and larger SUV’s are often primarily rear-wheel-drive. When the driver (or the vehicle’s computer) selects 4WD, the transfer case also sends power to the front axle. The transfer case may also contain an additional gear set for off-roading.

    The transfer case is lubricated and cooled by special gear oil. Over time, the oil gets contaminated and needs to be changed, just like your engine oil and transmission fluid. Your vehicle manufacturer will have a schedule and your friendly ModernTire of West Hartford tech can help.

    Now many vehicles around West Hartford have all-wheel-drive (AWD). AWD vehicles are often based on a front-wheel-drive or rear-wheel-drive vehicle with the addition of a center differential that sends power to the rear wheels when needed. This center differential, like the transfer case, has a critical service schedule for replacing contaminated lubricant. The work of transfer cases and differentials is demanding and proper maintenance should not be neglected by West Hartford car owners.

    Knowing the service schedule for your transfer case and differentials will help keep your pickup running well and avoid premature wear.



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Replacement cost of water pumps

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:

    Some water pumps are driven by the serpentine belt and are bolted on out in the open with the alternator and air compressor and such. Other water pumps are driven by the timing belt. These water pumps take a lot of labor to access and replace. I suspect your current vehicle has a water pump that is driven by the timing belt.

    Water pumps are fairly easy devices that circulate engine coolant/antifreeze around the engine and out to the radiator. Like any mechanical device, they eventually wear out. Although having a cooling system service done on schedule at ModernTire of West Hartford in West Hartford will extend the life of your water pump and its seals and gaskets – it will eventually fail and need to be replaced.

    Those water pumps that are driven by the timing belt (the belt that controls when your engine intake and exhaust valves open) are attached directly to the engine block. The timing belt system has a vital protective cover. The serpentine belt and all the accessories are located over the timing belt cover. So getting to the water pump requires the technician remove a lot of parts – which then need to be replaced .

    When the water pump must be replaced, it is a bright idea for West Hartford auto owners to go ahead and also replace the timing belt, timing belt tensioner and idler pulleys. First, because the timing belt may have been contaminated by leaking coolant; second, there is a schedule for replacing your timing belt and Avon drivers might as well make the modest additional added expenditure while everything is taken apart to avoid the same labor cost down the road.

    By the way, the reverse is true as well: When you are replacing your timing belt on schedule go ahead and replace the water pump at the same time. It would be a shame to spend the cash on one of these replacements only to have to do it all again in a few months because the other then needs replacement. Do them at the same time and start the clock over for both.



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When should I replace my windshield wipers?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:

    Well, most West Hartford auto owners wait until they fail. The problem with that is that you find out they have failed when you actually need them most – a little too late.

    Wiper blades are really an important safety system for motorists. As you can imagine, 90% of our driving decisions are based on what we see. If you can’t see well because your wipers can’t clear your windshield, your ability to drive safely is significantly impaired.

    So the simple answer: of course, West Hartford drivers should change your wipers if they don’t work well. But replace them before they go bad so they are always ready when that storm hits. For some drivers, once a year may be enough. For others – those who drive a lot, whose wipers are exposed to a lot of sun, or use their wipers more – replacing the blades a couple of times a year might be in order. .

    There are several types of wiper blades. The conventional blade is the base model. On the other end of the spectrum are beam blades. These have a solid beam that provides uniform pressure over the entire wiper surface for better contact with the windshield. And there are hybrid blades that are a combination of conventional and beam blades.

    Upgraded wiper blades last longer and provide a cleaner wipe. Car owners can always upgrade, but should never go with a lower grade blade than what was installed on your vehicle from the factory.

    Finally, there are special winter blades. The special design of winter wiper blades resists snow and ice build-up in the blade.

    Remember, using your wipers on an icy windshield will tear up your wiper blades. Scrape your windshield before running your wipers.

    Your friendly ModernTire of West Hartford service specialist can give you wiper blade options and help you select what’s best for this critical safety system.



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I remember my dad having the shop “pack the bearings” on the family car. Is this something I need to have done?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:

    Well, most West Hartford auto owners wait until they fail. The problem with that is that you find out they have failed when you actually need them most – a little too late.

    Wiper blades are really an important safety system for motorists. As you can imagine, 90% of our driving decisions are based on what we see. If you can’t see well because your wipers can’t clear your windshield, your ability to drive safely is significantly impaired.

    So the simple answer: of course, West Hartford drivers should change your wipers if they don’t work well. But replace them before they go bad so they are always ready when that storm hits. For some drivers, once a year may be enough. For others – those who drive a lot, whose wipers are exposed to a lot of sun, or use their wipers more – replacing the blades a couple of times a year might be in order. .

    There are several types of wiper blades. The conventional blade is the base model. On the other end of the spectrum are beam blades. These have a solid beam that provides uniform pressure over the entire wiper surface for better contact with the windshield. And there are hybrid blades that are a combination of conventional and beam blades.

    Upgraded wiper blades last longer and provide a cleaner wipe. Car owners can always upgrade, but should never go with a lower grade blade than what was installed on your vehicle from the factory.

    Finally, there are special winter blades. The special design of winter wiper blades resists snow and ice build-up in the blade.

    Remember, using your wipers on an icy windshield will tear up your wiper blades. Scrape your windshield before running your wipers.

    Your friendly ModernTire of West Hartford service specialist can give you wiper blade options and help you select what’s best for this critical safety system.



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In the rush and anxiety of everyday driving, following distance is often sacrificed for the feeling that we need to get somewhere faster.

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:

It is easy to forget that when we do not allow enough following distance, we not only take an unnecessary risk, but we also fail to save time, and in many cases we contribute to the slowing of traffic.

Create a cushion of space between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you:

  • This will help you stay safe on the road, and keep traffic moving along.
  • It provides drivers with time to react in case of an emergency.
  • It allows other cars to change lanes and make turns without interrupting the flow of traffic.
  • It enables motorists to be defensive drivers by giving them time to recognize and react to changes on the road.

Always use the four second rule when following another vehicle:

  • Select a fixed object along the road way, and ensure that it takes four seconds for your vehicle to reach the object after the vehicle in front of you has passed it.
  • The four second rule only applies to ideal road conditions; you must always remember to adjust your following distance to suit the current driving conditions.

Special circumstances require special care in addition to the required following distance:

  • Drivers who cannot see well because their view is blocked by large loads, obstructions, or other cars.
  • Drivers backing out of driveways or parking spaces without a clear line of vision.
  • Drivers about to be forced into your lane by a vehicle, a pedestrian, a bicyclist, an obstruction, or a shifting lane.
  • Pedestrians with umbrellas in front of their faces or hats pulled down over their eyes.
  • Distracted people, e.g. delivery persons, construction workers; or, drivers that are on cell phones, making conversation, taking care of children, or looking at maps.
  • Confused people, e.g. tourists (especially at complicated intersections), and drivers who are looking for a house number or who slow down for no apparent reason.
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Only 1/3 of all driving is done after dark, but 2/3 of all fatal accidents happen at night.

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:

One obvious problem associated with night driving is limited vision. With only your headlights to show your way, you are boxed into a visual area that extends only about 300 feet in front of you. If an object ahead is a dark color or does not reflect your headlights, you may not see it until it is too late to react safely.

Your eyes do not process information as well:

  • At dawn
  • At dusk
  • In dark conditions

Your eyes get fatigued by continually adjusting to rapidly changing distances and conditions. Drivers cannot judge distances as well when it is dark. Objects that, in daylight, help you relate to other objects cannot always be seen.

Keep your windshield as clean as possible:

  • Vision is especially impaired at night, dawn and dusk conditions.
  •  A light film of dirt can reduce your ability to see by as much as 40 percent.
  •  Dirty windshields also create glare, further impairing vision.

Consider other drivers and drive defensively:

  • Remember that approaching traffic has similar driving conditions.
  •  Lower the beam of your headlights when you see an oncoming vehicle. The driver of the approaching vehicle may be blinded by your high beam lights.
  •  If the other driver doesn't dim his or her lights, divert your view to the lower right side of the road in front of you to avoid being affected by the glare.
  •  Take curves more slowly at night. Your headlights point straight ahead and, thus, do not illuminate what is around each corner. “Expect the Unexpected” around each blind-spot!
  •  Take extra care during the half-light of dawn and dusk. At those times, headlights may not be enough to give you a clear view. Additionally, the glare of the rising or setting sun may blind you or other drivers. Drive carefully when traveling into or away from a low sun.
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My check engine light is on and my boyfriend thinks he can get the code read and know what part to replace to fix my pickup. I say it’s not that doable. Who’s right?

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:

Good news – you are! Just look at it logically: there are hundreds of things that can go wrong with your pickup. Some are simple and some are quite complicated.

Let’s take a step back. Over 80% of engine functions are computer controlled. The computer receives key information from dozens of sensors. When a sensor reading is out of range, a trouble code is entered in the computer and the Check Engine Light is illuminated.

It’s a common misconception by motorists that the trouble code will tell you exactly what is wrong. For any given trouble code, there are any number of faults that would trigger the code. For example, a code indicating a misfire on cylinder three could be due to a bad spark plug, a failed coil, ignition problems, compression issues, etc. Each of those possibilities requires additional essential diagnosis to confirm or rule out a cause. Once a trained ModernTire of West Hartford service professional with state-of-the art diagnostic tools and extensive research databases is able to nail down the problem, then he can set about getting it corrected.

A complicated diagnosis may take some time. Your boyfriend might be tempted to bypass a diagnosis charge by taking a trouble code reading with an inexpensive scan tool and start replacing parts. He might get lucky, but chances are you’ll end up spending more time and money than if you went to a professional with the right equipment.

A final word – a flashing Check Engine Light indicates that a condition exists that could lead to serious, costly damage. Motorists should get to their service center or to ModernTire of West Hartford in Blue Back Square right away. A steadily illuminated Check Engine Light is less urgent so you can get it checked at your convenience. But keep in mind that a minor issue today can become more serious for Avon auto owners if left unresolved.

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I'm really confused about auto service intervals for various items on my car. Help!

  • ModernTire of West Hartford Tech Answer:

The simple answer for West Hartford car owners is to follow the car maker's recommended service intervals listed in your owner's manual or in your service center's database. But the team at ModernTire of West Hartford in West Hartford sympathizes with West Hartford drivers because of the confusing intervals for modern vehicles..

The simple answer for West Hartford car owners is to follow the car maker's recommended service intervals listed in your owner's manual or in your service center's database. But the team at ModernTire of West Hartford in West Hartford sympathizes with West Hartford drivers because of the confusing intervals for modern vehicles.

Your owner's service manual will have a schedule for critical maintenance services and inspections.

Service items include: Tire rotation, wheel balancing, oil change, coolant service, transmission service, brake system, power steering system, fuel system, differential service, and transfer case service.

Inspections will include: Alignment check, air conditioning, brakes, suspension, axles, exhaust, tires, lights emissions, belts and hoses, and steering.

It's vital for West Hartford auto owners to remember there is no exception that would make it OK to extend an interval. These intervals already assume "best case" conditions for a safe margin of error. However, you may live or drive in West Hartford conditions that are harsher than average. Your owner's manual may have a modified schedule for “severe service" - things like extreme temperatures, towing, hauling heavy loads around Avon, short trips, stop-and-go expressway conditions, etc.

Consult your owner's manual or with your ModernTire of West Hartford service professional about your driving situation and adjust your service intervals accordingly.

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