Jigsaw Automotive: Carson City, Nevada Auto Repair
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All Major & Minor Repairs

Offering honest quality service you can trust.

Specialists for Classic Cars & Hot Rods

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FAQ

This page provides answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about vehicle repair and service. We've thrown in some of our favorite tips and recommendations, too. Please call us or consult our Contact Us page for answers to your specific questions. We are happy to assist you!

  • Tires

    • Is it safe to repair a flat tire?

      If a tire loses all or most of its air pressure, it must be removed from the wheel for a complete internal inspection to be sure it's not damaged. Tires that are run even short distances while flat are often damaged beyond repair. Most punctures nail holes, or cuts up to 1/4 inch which are confined to the tread may be satisfactorily repaired by trained personnel using industry-approved methods. Don't repair tires with tread punctures larger than 1/4 inch, or with any sidewall puncture. Also, never repair tires that are worn below 1/16 inch tread depth. Your Advisor and tire technician can advise you.

    • Can I drive normally on my spare tire?

      Many newer vehicles come equipped with a temporary spare. These tires are usually much smaller than the other tires on your car. It is important to realize that these spares have far more limitations than a typical tire, including speed and recommended driving distance. No more than 50mph and no longer than 50 miles per trip.

    • An illuminated light on my dash shows that I have a low tire. Can I just put air in it?

      In many cases correcting the air pressure in your tires will extinguish the Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) warning light. Often seasonal temperature drops will lower tire air pressure a few pounds (a good case for Nitrogen – see 11 above) and trigger the TPMS warning light. In all cases where one or two particular tires are significantly lower than the others, or lower than the factory recommended pressure, a trained tire technician should examine the tire to determine the cause and examine the casing for signs of over stress. Some TPMS systems require special tools to access the vehicle computer. Advanced level tire technicians are trained and equipped for this technology.

    • Should I rotate my tires?

      The main purpose of regularly rotating tires is to achieve more uniform wear for all tires on the vehicle. It is recommended that you rotate your tires at least every 6,000 to 8,000 miles or uneven wear may develop. At strongly tire-oriented facilities this is a service typically done at no additional cost; along with free flat repairs, Nitrogen inflation, and an undercar inspection.

  • Vehicle Maintenance

    • If I don't take my car to my car dealer for maintenance or repair will I void my warranty?

      As a vehicle owner you should know about the Magnuson Moss Warranty Act. In 1975 the US Congress passed the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act – a federal law that governs consumer product warranties. Among other things Congress wanted to ensure that consumers could get complete and straight forward information about warranty terms and conditions. In short the Magnuson-Moss Act gives you these rights. Generally your vehicle manufacturer’s warranty cannot require you to return to your auto dealer for vehicle maintenance – or to use only the brand of replacement parts offered by that dealer. By law your vehicle’s manufacturer’s warranty will stay in effect when you have regularly scheduled maintenance performed at a qualified facility that use appropriate parts and procedures.

    • My check engine or service engine soon light comes on. What should I do?

      When you first start your car all the dashboard lights come on as a safety test. These lights will go off when the test is complete. If your light comes on later you need to have it checked by a competent technician familiar with modern diagnostic procedures. This could be a simple problem, but left alone it may result in an expensive repair. Don’t ignore this warning.

    • What are all of the chemicals and fluid flushes for? Are they really necessary?

      Protecting the vital wear points of your vehicle with quality lubricants will vastly improve service life and will provide optimum efficiency. Today’s properly maintained vehicles with 100,000 miles no longer consume oil and break with high frequency. Chemistry has played an important role. The right chemicals can restore the ph balance in radiators so that acidity will not degrade hoses and internal metals in radiators and coolers. Other chemicals such as transmission flush chemicals along with pulse flush equipment rinse the oxidation from the valves and other internal workings of transmissions.

    • Is it really necessary to replace my timing belt at the recommended interval?

      YES. The failure of a timing belt in many cars can result in major engine damage. The cost of repairing an engine with a broken timing belt is much greater than the cost of a timing belt replacement.

    • When should I change my spark plugs?

      For maximum fuel economy and peak engine performance, your spark plugs should be replaced every 30 months or 30,000 miles, unless your vehicle is equipped with 100,000-mile platinum tipped spark plugs.

    • What is the difference between maintenance and safety?

      Maintenance is done to prevent any future problems from occurring to the vehicle. Safety is to prevent any incident that would cause damage to the vehicle, to you or to the driver who is driving next to you.

    • What are the consequences of postponing maintenance?

      Many parts on your vehicle are interrelated. Ignoring maintenance can lead to trouble: specific parts, or an entire system, can fail. Neglecting even simple routine maintenance, such as changing the oil or checking the coolant, can lead to poor fuel economy, unreliability, or costly breakdowns. It also may invalidate your warranty. Properly maintaining your vehicle is less expensive than repairs from negligence.

    • What does it mean if my "check engine" or "service engine soon" light comes on?

      There are many sensors and computerized components that manage your vehicle’s engine performance and emissions. When one of these fails, the "check engine" light is illuminated. Although your car may seem to run fine, it is important to have the issue addressed to prevent long-term problems.

  • Fluid Leaks

    • I see a fluid leak under my car, what is it?

      You can identify fluids by their color and consistency: • Yellowish green, pastel blue or florescent orange colors indicate an overheated engine or an antifreeze leak caused by a bad hose, water pump or leaking radiator. • A dark brown or black oily fluid means the engine is leaking oil. A bad seal or gasket could cause the leak. • A red oily spot indicates a transmission or power-steering fluid leak. A puddle of clear water usually is no problem. It may be normal condensation from your vehicle's air conditioner.

  • Vehicle Smells & Sounds

  • Oil Change

    • What is that milky brown engine oil?

      Milky brown engine oil is an indication of coolant in the oil. This can be caused by a blown head gasket (other gasket), a failed transmission cooler, or cracked casings. This condition is very serious and needs to be checked by a professional technician quickly.

    • What is synthetic motor oil?

      Synthetic motor oils can be a good choice for high output, turbocharged or supercharged engines, vehicles that are used for towing (especially during hot weather), or vehicles that are operated in extremely cold or hot climates. Synthetic motor oils, though several times more expensive than mineral-based motor oils, can improve fuel economy and provide longer intervals between changes. They also provide instant lubrication on start-up.

  • Troubleshooting

  • Fuel System

  • Improving Gas Mileage

    • How can you increase fuel mileage?

      To optimize gas mileage, check tires for proper inflation, make sure wheels are in alignment, check and replace filters, change Your oil regularly, keep your engine properly tuned, empty out your trunk of unnecessary items, observe the speed limit. These seemingly minor adjustments to your driving and maintenance habits can save on gas--and money!

  • Cabin Air Filters

    • Is a Cabin Air Filter the same as an engine intake filter?

      While most cabin air filters look like simple panel filters that are used to filter air to the engine, they are much more technologically advanced and contain an entirely different filtering media. Basically, engine intake filters protect engine components, whereas cabin air filters protect your lungs.

    • Why are Cabin Air Filters important?

      Air quality is becoming a major concern for many people - outdoors, in our homes, and now even in our automobiles. An estimated 50 million Americans suffer from hay fever and other allergy-related problems.

    • Where are Cabin Air Filters located?

      Cabin air filters are typically located behind a vehicle's dashboard, or behind the glove box. Others may be located in the engine compartment, typically in the cowl area.