Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a Timing Belt / Cam Belt?

The job of the timing belt / cambelt is to turn the camshaft(s) at exactly 1/2 the speed of the crankshaft while maintaining a precise alignment. This means that the crankshaft will make two revolutions for every revolution of the camshaft. Engines will have at least one camshaft, or as many as four camshafts in some of the V-type engines. The camshaft causes the intake and exhaust valves to open and close in time with the pistons which move up and down in the cylinders. The valves must open and close at exactly the right time in relationship to the piston movement in order for the engine to run properly. Timing belts / Cambelts have a limited life span. Car makers use these belts instead of more durable chains because chains are noisier and cost more to manufacture. Your vehicle owner's manual will recommend at what mileage the timing belt must be replaced.

When do I change my Engine Oil?

It depends on how you drive. If you do a lot of city driving or low speed/low frequency driving, we recommend oil changes at 6000 miles. The sludge formed by contaminated oil reduces its ability to protect your engine from rust, corrosion and thermal breakdown. That's why we recommend changing your vehicle's oil and filter every 6 months or 6,000 miles.

Do I have to get my car serviced at a Franchised Dealer?

The European Regulations governing the sale and after sales servicing of new cars changed in October 2003. For new cars purchased after that date you are no longer obliged during the warranty period to get the car serviced by a franchise dealer. You must however continue to get the car serviced according the to manufacturer's recommended schedule and criteria using only manufacturer approved parts.

How can I tell if I need new Brake- Pads?

Do you hear a noise when braking? is it grinding, screeching, growling. Does your brake pedal feel lower or does the pedal travel further than it used to? Front brakes averge around 30,000 miles.

Can I return my car for a Free Oil Top Up?

You can return to your vehicle, at any time between services, for an oil level check and, if necessary, a free top up.

I am thinking of buying a new car can you help?

Yes we can, many of our valued customers get us to check out the car before they hand over the cash. This is a service we offer absolutely free of charge all we ask is that you bring the car to us.

How often should I change the Antifreeze?

For 'ordinary' antifreeze, the manufacturers of the vehicle generally recommend coolant changes every two to three years or 30,000 miles. Others say it's not a bad idea to change the coolant every year for maximum corrosion protection - especially in vehicles that have aluminum cylinder heads, blocks or radiators. Several antifreeze suppliers have just recently introduced "long life" antifreeze formulations that claim to provide protection for four years or 50,000 miles. Caution: These new long life coolants provide extended life only when used in a clean system mixed with water. If mixed with ordinary antifreeze and/or old coolant in a system, the corrosion protection is reduced to that of normal antifreeze (2 to 3 years and 30,000 miles).

What is a Pollen / Cabin filter?

The Pollen / Cabin filter itself is basically an air filter element similar to the normal engine air filter. If you suffer from hay-fever and or allergies what a luxury the added fitment of a pollen filter can make. Many drivers do not realise that these filters are fitted and should be changed at least every year.

How do I correctly check my Tyres?

The legal minimum tread depth in the UK is 1.6mm over 75% of the tyre's width and around its entire outer circumference. Check using the short 'tread bars' (each 1.6mm deep) which lie across the tread at intervals in modern tyres. It is best to change your car tyres before they reach the limit. A tyre with less than 1.6mm tread requires twice the braking distance of a new tyre When inflating tyres, check the pressure readings used. Some air gauges use bars, rather than pounds per square inch (psi), and any confusion could lead to burst or over-inflated tyres. As an added safety check, inspect your car tyres' inner and outer walls regularly for any cuts, bulges, or abrasions.

My car smells like Rotten Eggs!

The 'rotten egg' sulfur smell is usually generated by high temperatures in the catalytic converter caused by excess unburned fuel going through the exhaust. The converter oxidizes this fuel, which generates the heat, and the high heat generates the smell. An occasional whiff of this smell upon start-up or momentarily at idle isn't necessarily a problem. In fact, it indicates the catalytic converter is doing its job in preventing unburned fuel vapors from reaching the atmosphere. But of course, the concern is what's causing the higher percentage of unburned fuel from the engine.

Call Lloyds Garage Repairs on 0151 327 3458 for more advice... We are here to help.

Lloyds Garage Repairs - Your local MOT Station - 01513273458