covid photo

We are open and here for you and your vehicle!

Auto Repair is an Essential Business. We are making special accommodations in order to limit the spread of the Coronavirus. Walk-Ins are welcome but we do prefer Appointments. Please call our office to schedule an appointment. Thank you and Be Safe!

Yearly Archives: 2021

Alternator

Your alternator makes electricity to start and run your engine and all the electrical systems in your vehicle. That’s everything from the on-board computers to the turn signals. And of course, there is the entertainment system, seat heaters, power windows, and everything you plug into the power outlets. After your alternator makes enough electricity to do all that, it recharges your battery with what’s left over. When you constantly have a low or dead battery, the alternator is usually a prime suspect. However, the alternator is just one component of the starting/charging system and a problem with any of the other components could be the actual cause. In addition to the alternator, the charging/starting system includes the battery, starter, serpentine belt system, and all the electrical cables that connect them. Your technician has a systematic process of testing components and connections to get to the source of your problem. The initial symptoms determine where to begi ... read more

What are the Symptoms of a Failing Fuel Filter?

What are the Symptoms of a Failing Fuel Filter?

A fuel filter is part of a vehicle's fuel system, eliminating the impediments that lead to the cars' starting and running issues. Its function is to filter out any potential form of dirt and fragments such as paint chips and rust particles from entering the fuel pump, thus protecting the engine from wearing out and wreaking-havoc on the vehicle. Therefore, fuel filters need routine maintenance and replacements for longevity, ensure the engine operates at its peak performance, and prevent sudden breakdowns and unnecessary repair expenses. Being keen to notice the signs that show the need for a new fuel filter is essential, and the following three symptoms are enough to know a failing fuel filter and request a replacement. 1. Problems in starting the engine Given that fuel filters are installed for the engine's protection, once it becomes difficult to start the engine, it will sign a failing fuel filter, and checking if it is clogged is the necessary step ... read more

The Smell of Danger (What Causes Gasoline Odors?)

A driver recently noticed that her garage had begun to smell like gasoline after she parked her vehicle inside. Her Check Engine light had also just come on. This was something she'd never experienced before. So, she called up her NAPA Service Advisor and asked what was causing it. The answer, of course, is that many things can cause a sitting vehicle to smell like gasoline fumes. But it can sometimes be tricky to track down the source, so here are a few things you can look for that may help your NAPA AutoCare Center technician pinpoint the origin of the odor. Gasoline odors can be caused by a leak somewhere in the fuel system, meaning gasoline can be dripping out. Some possibilities? It could be a break in a fuel line. You could have a leaky fuel-injection line or injector. There's a vent for your fuel tank that may also leak. The fuel filler neck can wear out and fail. One thing you should look for is to see if there are any puddles of gasoline on the floor of your garage ... read more

Tags:

fumes

Busted In Houston: The Maintenance Free Myth.

Quality surveys report fewer problems with new Houston cars than ever before. So does that mean that modern vehicles have become maintenance free? Back when cars spent more time in Houston repair shops, Texas drivers were more mindful of routine service. Now, it's much easier to put it off. Take Houston tune-ups for example. In the days of mechanical ignition systems, an engine needed to be tuned-up every couple of years. If your engine was out of tune, you knew it. It ran poorly and got bad fuel economy driving on Texas streets and highways. Now, the ignition system is electronic and controlled by the engine management computer. Spark plugs rarely get fouled and will last for as much as a 100,000 miles/150,000 kilometers. So vehicle tune-ups used to force you in for service, and while you were there, you just took care of whatever else was on the list. So what's the benefit to keeping up with factory scheduled maintenance at Kacal's Auto &a ... read more

Kacal's Auto & Truck Service Technician Training

Your car’s so important to your life: when it breaks down, you need it back on the road as soon as possible – with the problem fixed right the first time.  If you’ve ever check into some of the training technicians receive, you may be surprised at how much knowledge and skill goes into diagnosing and repairing a modern car. Our engines are more and more powerful, fuel efficient and reliable.  This is all due to engineering.  But the advances come at the price of simplicity.  Modern cars are so much more complex from a mechanical and electronics standpoint that it makes your head spin.  Vehicles have several networked computers controlling most of the engine functions and many other vehicle functions as well.  We take all this sophistication for granted – but somebody must fix it when it breaks. It requires a high level of commitment on the part of the technician and the service center as well.  In addition to the training, t ... read more

Your Vehicle's Suspension in Houston, Texas

Suspension systems should continue to operate effectively for many years and over long distances, holding your tires’ footprint on the road.  Eventually, components do wear out, but how long that takes depends a lot on how you drive in Texas. As you can imagine, if most of your driving is on smooth Houston, Texas, highways, your shock absorbers will last a lot longer than if you do most of your driving on bumpy Houston roads or hauling heavy loads.  In addition to just wearing out, suspension components can be damaged in an accident or by a hard impact – like hitting a pothole, a curb or a rock in the road. Because the life span of shocks can vary so widely, your vehicle manufacturer recommends periodic inspections.  During an inspection, your Kacal's Auto & Truck Service service technician will check for worn, broken or missing suspension parts. If the inspection reveals any problems, take care of this important safety and handling work.  Whe ... read more

Can Potholes Damage My Car?

Can Potholes Damage My Car?

Potholes are a common occurrence in regions where the weather fluctuates. They are formed when water and melted ice sink into cracks in the road. These seep further into the ground below, causing the road's surface to expand and create a pocket. The result is an uneven pavement where sections are inflated by water bulge and collapse, forming potholes. Sometimes potholes can be avoided when you see them clearly, though often they are not visible, and swerving to avoid them can be dangerous. If you hit a pothole, even a small one, it's best not to ignore it. There is damage that can occur, even if it is not noticeable at first. Steps to Take When Hitting A Pothole There are important areas to check as soon as your car hits a pothole. It may seem like a minor inconvenience, but reviewing the following areas is important to avoid further damage: 1. Check your tires to make sure they have been punctured. Some potholes may have sharp items or a build-up of ice or debris. 2. Chec ... read more

Let’s Talk About Winter Tires

We’re not talking about all-season tires here, but dedicated winter tires. Modern winter tires do a terrific job in a wide range of winter conditions.  First, below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, regular tires become hard and inflexible.  That means they don’t provide the road grip you need. Even if you don’t live somewhere with a lot of snow, but it still gets below 45 degrees in the winter, you will be safer with winter tires. In addition, they are specifically designed to more effectively move snow and water. That’s the key to traction on ice, packed snow and wet roads. They use a micro-pore compound that allows the tire to bite into ice and snow.  They also use wider grooves that run around the circumference of the tread to expel snow from the tire better.  The lugs and grooves on winter tires have a special shape that throws the packed snow out of the tread as the tire turns.  The tread is then open when it comes back in contact with the ... read more

There's More to Exhaust Than The Muffler

We’ve all heard a car or truck that needs a new muffler.  But there’s more to the exhaust system than just the muffler.  The exhaust system has three main functions: To safely get hot exhaust gas from the engine out the tailpipe Treats the exhaust to remove harmful pollutants Muffle the engine noise Exhaust gas is poisonous.  You don’t want it getting into the passenger compartment.  For example, carbon monoxide can be deadly.  That’s why you should never run your engine in a closed garage.  If you have a leak somewhere in the exhaust system, exhaust could get into the passenger cabin and make you sick or even kill you. If you smell exhaust in the vehicle, roll down your windows and get it inspected.  You may smell or see exhaust coming from the engine compartment or under the vehicle if you have a leak.  Sometimes the sound from an exhaust leak is loud and obvious.  Sometimes it’s a ticking sound when you ... read more

If You Are Using A Screen Reader And Are Having Problems Using This Website, please call Kacal's Auto and Truck Service (713) 747-8076 For Assistance.