• What Every Driver Should Know About Engine Oil

    While you may know that you need to get an oil change for your car regularly, you may be stumped as to why oil is such an important part of a functioning car. Too embarrassed to ask your local mechanic to explain it to you? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading to learn some basic points about engine oil and car maintenance.

    What It Does

    You can probably guess that engine oil acts as a lubricant in your car’s engine. However, it does a lot more than prevent metal-on-metal friction. Engine oil also prevents “blow-by,” which is what we call harmful soot, exhaust gases, and unused fuel that, without the presence of oil, often gets past the piston rings and enters the crankcase. Oil also fights against metal’s natural tendency to bend, melt, and burn, keeping your car’s engine in one functioning piece.

    How It’s Classified

    In the old days, there were only a few different types of oil available, making the choice of which oil to buy a lot simpler. Nowadays, there are enough oil options to make your head spin. This is good in the long run, of course, as more complex engines require different qualities from their oil. When purchasing oil, first look at the numbers on the front of the oil container. These indicate the oil’s viscosity rating—in other words, how thick the oil is. Most modern vehicles require multigrade oils, which have multiple numbers (such as 5W-30). This series of numbers will usually be preceded by a series of letters. One such combination is “SAE,” otherwise known as the Society of Automotive Engineers. Another is “API,” which stands for the American Petroleum Institute , an organization that rates the performance level of engine oil.

    Are you looking for a mechanic in Silver Spring, MD to conduct your oil change? Murray’s Auto Clinics can take care of all your car maintenance needs, whether you need an oil change, muffler repair, or car alignment. Call (240) 450-2478 today for more information about our featured services and auto offers.

  • Tips for Creating a Car Maintenance Checklist

    Most people have a basic idea of what should go on a car maintenance checklist: an oil change, tire rotation, and brake service. However, other car maintenance necessities often go overlooked. Want to make sure you keep your car in tip-top condition? Keep reading for some tips on creating the ultimate car maintenance checklist.

    Time Your Timing Belt

    Timing belts are often overlooked in newer cars, but keeping yours in good condition can actually extend the life of your car . It can be difficult to tell if your timing belt is worn out, meaning that you usually won’t notice until it’s too late. Keep in mind that timing belts need to be replaced anywhere from around 30,000 miles to 105,000 miles. Check your car owner’s manual for specifications, and ask your local mechanic for information on the specific model of your timing belt.

    Let Your Filter Do Its Job

    The purpose of the fuel filter is to filter impurities from the fuel before it goes into the fuel-injection system and engine. Thus, it’s a no-brainer that the filter can get dirty from time to time. Fortunately, replacing your fuel filter is easy and doesn’t cost much. However, left unchecked, a dirty fuel filter can cause problems such as premature fuel-pump failure or clogged fuel injectors, which both require expensive repairs at the auto shop.

    Replace Your Brake Fluid

    Over time, brake fluid can become contaminated and lose its original properties, which means it can start to do things that it shouldn’t—like boil. To make sure your brakes continue to work properly, remember to replace the brake fluid at regular intervals. About once every two years should do the trick, but check with your local mechanic if you’re unsure about timing this important maintenance service.

    Need a mechanic in Silver Spring, MD to help you complete your car maintenance checklist? Whether you’re coming in for radiator repair, an oil change, or timing belt replacement, Murray’s Auto Repair Clinics are ready to help get your car going again. Call today at (240) 450-2478 for more information about our auto repair services.

  • The Benefits of Wheel Balancing

    It seems kind of silly, the idea of “balancing” a wheel. Aren’t wheels already balanced? Do they even need to be balanced since they’re mounted to the car? Think about it this way: even the slightest difference in weight around the wheel is traveling very fast around the axles hundreds of times a minute, which can create enough momentum to cause serious vibrations and other problems. Unbalanced tires can also strain the wheel bearings and suspension systems, and even cause the tires to wear prematurely. In other words, improperly balanced wheels can cost you a lot of money in the long run.

    To have your tires inspected, rotated, and balanced, bring your vehicle to Murray’s Auto Clinics in Silver Spring, MD. Our ASE-certified auto mechanics perform all of the auto maintenance and repair service you need, from minor maintenance services such as oil changes, tire rotations, and wheel balancing to major repairs. To learn more about our services, find the auto repair shop nearest you, or schedule an appointment , call us at (240) 450-2478.

  • How Murray’s Auto Clinic Can Help You

    Here at Murray’s Auto Clinic, we provide auto repair with care. Our objective is to be reliable and available for you, so that you can drive safely. In addition, we insist on giving you a straightforward and satisfactory auto shop experience—tell us what the problem is, and we’ll fix it. There aren’t any catches involved.

    Watch this video to learn more about us and our attitude towards auto repair. You’ll see that we are available for any car repair service—whether it’s an oil change, muffler repair, or transmission fluid change. Even if you need an engine replacement, we can take care of you and your vehicle. For the best mechanic in Silver Spring, MD , call (240) 450-2478 or stop by one of our locations in your neighborhood.

  • Bring Your Car to Murray’s!

    For complete auto care in Silver Spring, MD, trust the ASE-certified mechanics at Murray’s Auto Clinics. We do it all, from routine maintenance to major auto repairs, and no matter how big or small the job your total satisfaction is our aim. Watch this video to learn a bit more about Murray’s and why it’s the auto repair shop of choice for drivers in Silver Spring.

    To schedule service or find the Murray’s repair shop nearest you, call (240) 450-2478. When you call, be sure to ask about our rewards membership and how you can receive $50 off your next service. We’re also happy to tell you more about the auto maintenance and repair services we offer at our two auto repair shops in Silver Spring, MD and discuss the automotive problems you are currently experiencing to get to the bottom of the issue and get you back on the road in no time.

  • What Is Your Check Engine Light Telling You?

    Routine auto repair is one of the most important aspects of car ownership. When your car is experiencing mechanical problems, you will want to visit your mechanic right away. In order to determine when it is time to visit your mechanic, you should be aware of your dashboard lights at all times. For example, when your vehicle is in need of transmission repair, your check engine will turn on. Let’s take a closer look at what your check engine light could be telling you about your car’s maintenance needs.

    Broken Oxygen Sensor

    One of the common causes of a check engine light that is turned on is a broken oxygen sensor. Your car’s oxygen sensor is designed to provide your car with valuable information about how much fuel is being used when you drive. When an oxygen sensor in your car goes out, your check engine light will turn on right away. Your mechanic can replace your oxygen sensor and restore the fuel efficiency of your vehicle.

    Loose Gas Cap

    Another common reason that your check engine light may turn on is when your gas cap is loose or faulty. Your gas cap is designed to keep your gas tank from losing fuel, and also protects your car from creating additional emissions. In the event that your check engine light turns on suddenly, you may want to inspect your gas cap.

    Damaged Catalytic Converter

    Finally, a damaged catalytic converter may be the cause of your check engine light becoming illuminated. Your catalytic converter is an essential part of your vehicle’s exhaust system. If your catalytic converter has not been maintained properly, your catalytic converter will not be able to reduce the exhaust gases in your car.

    With the help of your mechanic in White Oak, MD , you will be able to diagnose your check engine light issue. At Murray’s Auto Clinics, we will be thrilled to assist you with your auto repair needs. Call us at (240) 450-2478 to set up a repair appointment for your car today.

  • Signs You Need Muffler Repair

    There are some car components you can put off getting repaired, but the muffler isn’t one of them. Wait too long to get your muffler serviced, and it could cost you a lot more when the problem finally gets too bad to ignore. If you recognize any of these signs of a bad muffler, visit an auto repair shop near you in White Oak, MD for professional muffler repair .

    Loud Noises

    The most obvious sign of a failing muffler is a drastic (or gradual) change in the volume coming from the exhaust while driving. When it’s working properly, the muffler should operate quietly in the background while the vehicle is running. If you notice your car is louder, don’t just turn up the radio to drown out the rumbling or roaring sound—instead, have your car checked out by a muffler repair mechanic as soon as possible.

    Vibrations or Loss of Power

    As muffler problems develop and get worse, you might notice other signs besides (or in addition to) the deep, rumbling sound mentioned previously. If you experience new vibrations in the steering wheel or feet pedals when operating your car or notice a significant change in your car’s acceleration and top speed, have your muffler checked out by a professional mechanic.

    Lower Fuel Economy

    Problems with the muffler and exhaust system can also lower your vehicle’s gas mileage, so pay attention to how often you fill up at the pump or track your fuel economy and visit an auto repair shop when you notice your car’s fuel efficiency start to dip. Even if it’s not the exhaust system, something is affecting your vehicle’s gas mileage, and your mechanic can find out what it is.

    If you suspect a problem with your muffler or exhaust system, bring your car to Murray’s Auto Clinics. Both of our auto repair and maintenance shops in White Oak, MD are equipped to meet all of your vehicle service needs, including muffler and exhaust repair. Call us at (240) 450-2478 to learn more about our services or to talk with a mechanic about your vehicle.

  • Signs You Need a Transmission Fluid Change

    Your automatic transmission relies on transmission fluid for power, lubrication, and cooling. Over the miles of driving, your transmission fluid will naturally wear out and need to be replaced. With a transmission flush from a highly-rated mechanic, you can restore the performance and safety of your transmission. There are several signs that your car needs a transmission fluid change. First, you may notice grinding or slipping sensations when your vehicle transitions between gears. In addition, you may also notice a strange, burning smell when you operate your car. These symptoms are a sign that you need to visit the mechanic right away.

    Whether you are in need of transmission repair or another type of auto repair service near White Oak, MD, Murray’s Auto Clinics will be there to assist you. Our team of master mechanics provides expert auto repairs. Call us at (240) 450-2478 to learn more about the auto repair services that we have to offer you.

  • Separating the Myths from the Facts About Engine Oil

    Urban legends, myths, and distorted truths are commonplace when talking about engine oil. It’s one of those auto maintenance subjects that drivers think they know a lot about, but the myths and distortions drivers actually believe in can be disastrous. Clearing up the air about engine oil can help you make the right decisions for your vehicle, which in turn can help you avoid costly automotive problems later on. That’s why we sat down to write this post, so we could give you straight talk about the engine oil in your car.

    Myth: You Need to Change Your Oil Every 3,000 Miles

    Fact: There was a time when the 3,000-mile rule was the standard for cars, but advancements in oil chemistry and engine technology have resulted in longer intervals in between oil changes. Although there’s no harm in changing your car’s oil every 3,000 miles if that’s the schedule you’re used to, experts recommend sticking to the designated intervals in the owner’s manual.

    Myth: Engine Oil Needs to be Changed When It’s Dark

    Fact: Drivers should be in the habit of checking the engine oil regularly, but just because it looks dark or dirty doesn’t necessarily mean you’re overdue for an oil change. If you’re using an oil that contains detergent additives, the oil is actually working just the way it’s supposed to if it looks dirty. Again, this is where the manufacturer-recommended oil change interval can help you decide when to change the oil, regardless of the color on the dipstick.

    Myth: Once You Use Synthetic, You Always Have to Use It

    Fact: You may have heard about the benefits of synthetic engine oil, but perhaps you’re hesitant to make the switch or even try out synthetic oil because you’ve always heard that you can’t go back to traditional oil once you put synthetic in your car. We’re glad to tell you this is a straight-up myth. You can use any type of engine oil you prefer, traditional or synthetic, as long as it meets requirements set out in the owner’s manual.

    Need an oil change? Have questions about engine oil? Either way, the experts at Murray’s Auto Clinics can help. Our auto maintenance and repair shops in Silver Spring, MD are your go-to source for complete auto care, including oil changes and transmission flushes. Call us at (240) 450-2478 to learn more.

  • Interpreting Tire Wear

    Your car’s tires are among its most important features. By checking for the signs of tire wear on a routine basis, you can determine when it is time to schedule a tire change with your mechanic in. In order to check for tire wear, you should look at the wear patterns on your treads. Any unusual wear can indicate under or over inflation, or suspension issues in your vehicle. To learn more about how to interpret tire wear, watch this video.

    When you are in need of auto repair near White Oak, MD , do not hesitate to contact Murray’s Auto Clinics by calling (240) 450-2478. From brake repair to radiator repair and more, our mechanics can offer you a full range of services for your vehicle. We look forward to helping you take care of your vehicle.