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Automotive Tips from Allen's Automotive Center: Serpentine Belt Overview

The technicians at Allen's Automotive Center know your serpentine belt drives important engine accessories like your alternator, air conditioning compressor, and power steering. In some cars it may also power the power brakes or water pump. The serpentine belt is powered by the engine and winds around pulleys and the accessories. Some cars in Memphis have two serpentine belts. The serpentine belt, the belt tensioner (which maintains the appropriate tension on the belt) and the idler pulleys are together known as the accessory drive system.Now your serpentine belt and the belt tensioner will just wear out over time – that’s why your vehicle manufacturer has a scheduled belt replacement interval. The team at Allen's Automotive Center in Memphis can inspect your serpentine belt for wear and get it replaced if it’s time.Give us a call.Allen's Automotive Center1195 WINFIELD AVE.Memphis, Tennessee 38116901-332-3279  

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Serpentine Belt

Drive Defensively in Tennessee

Car care is part of auto safety in Memphis. But the most important thing we can do to improve safety on Tennessee roads is to drive safely.Defensive driving begins with the proper attitude. Have in mind that you won't let anyone take your safety away from you. You'll be aware of your surroundings, road conditions, other vehicles and hazards. And the first person to be concerned with is you: start with your own environment.Don't leave without securing all occupants including children and pets. Watch for loose items that can become projectiles during evasive maneuvers.Driving too fast or too slow increases the chance of an accident.Never drive impaired: Alcohol is a factor in half of all fatal crashes. Never drink and drive.Other impairments include being sleepy, angry, daydreaming or talking. If you suddenly wonder how you got where you are – you're not paying enough attention.Keep your windows clean and uncluttered. No fuzzy dice and stickers.Keep your ... read more

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Safety

When Are Your Tires Worn Out?

  Hey Memphis area drivers, are your tires worn out? What is the standard for our Tennessee streets? How can you tell on your vehicle?While there may be legal requirements for the Memphis area, there are safety concerns that go beyond meeting minimum replacement mandates.Two-thirty-seconds of an inch is the depth of the tire tread wear indicator bars that US law has required to be molded across all tires since August 1, 1968. When tires are worn so that this bar is visible, there's just 2/32 of an inch – 1.6 millimeters – of tread left. It's that level of wear that's been called into question recently.We're referring to the tread depth on a tire, it can't move surface water out of the way and you start to hydroplane.In a safety study, a section of a test track was flooded with a thin layer of water. If you laid a dime on the track, the water would be deep enough to surround the coin, but not enough to cover it.A car and a full-sized pick-up accelerated t ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Regular Schedule or Severe Service Schedule at Allen's Automotive Center?

Today's Allen's Automotive Center article focuses on severe service maintenance. Many Memphis drivers are not aware of them and yet there are also very vocal advocates in Tennessee who think that severe service schedules apply to everyone. Somewhere between a complete lack of awareness and the dire blanket statements lies a reasonable approach to severe service maintenance at Allen's Automotive Center.To back up a little, vehicle owner's manuals have schedules for preventive maintenance: things like oil changes, transmission service and so on. They say you should change your oil after a certain distanced traveled or after so many months. Memphis drivers understand this very well. What they may not know is that there are actually two service schedules: the regular schedule and the severe service schedule. The mileage and time intervals are lower on the severe service schedule.Now when you hear 'severe service,' you may think it doesn't apply to you ... read more

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Maintenance

Memphis Car Owners Ask: Why Do I Need to Change My Serpentine Belt?

Any Memphis driver who understands preventive maintenance knows that “if it ain't broke, don't fix it” is bad auto advice. Replacing a part before it breaks is much less costly for Memphis residents than repairing the engine damage that comes after a part breaks or fails. A good example of this is the serpentine belt.The serpentine belt gets its name because of its circuitous path around the engine. The serpentine belt is driven by the engine and powers a number of systems, as follows:1. The serpentine belt spins the compressor that generates the cool air for the air conditioning system.2. The serpentine belt powers the alternator. The alternator generates electricity for use in the vehicle's electrical systems and to charge the battery. Without the alternator, the battery wouldn't last more than a few miles.3. In many Memphis residents' vehicles, the serpentine belt runs the pumps for both the power steering and the power brakes. In other vehicles, the power steering pump ... read more

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Timing Belt

Is Your Memphis Driving Severe?

People near Memphis, Tennessee, often ask Allen's Automotive Center how often they should have a particular service done. It's a great thing to ask. You can look at your owner's manual or have your Memphis, Tennessee, service advisor at Allen's Automotive Center look up your vehicle in a service database. What you find is often a surprise to people – there are actually two service schedules.One is the regular schedule and the other is the severe service schedule. Service intervals are shorter on the severe service schedule. When asked, most folks in Memphis will say that their driving is normal and that the 'regular' schedule probably applies to them. 'Severe service' sounds pretty extreme – 'I don't drive like that.'Well, here is what the manufacturers say constitutes severe driving conditions; you can draw your own conclusions. Most of your trips are less than four miles (six and a half kilometers). Most of your trips are less than ten miles (16 km) and ... read more

It Pays to Take Care of Your Transmission at Allen's Automotive Center

If you've been paying attention, you've noticed that vehicle engines are getting more and more powerful in Memphis. At the same time, they are getting better and better fuel economy. I've gotta tell 'ya, most of that's because of technological advances in transmissions. To get a better understanding of why that is, let's talk bicycles.You've probably seen plenty of cyclists on Memphis roads. Perhaps you ride yourself. Then you know that a cyclist's cadence is the number of times per minute he or she pedals. The ideal pedal speed is the zone where they can most efficiently generate power over a sustained period of time. The experienced Tennessee cyclist uses her gears to keep her pedal speed in the ideal zone whether she's climbing a hill, cruising on a flat stretch or killing a downhill.Think of it this way: if you have a 1-speed bike, you really have to pump hard to get up to speed. Your top speed is limited by how fast as you can pedal. And if you're climbing a steep ... read more

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Transmission

Automotive Tips from Allen's Automotive Center: Causes of Wheel Misalignment

When properly aligned, all of your wheels are pointed in the same direction. Your vehicle will track true and handle the way it is designed. Memphis drivers often associate our wheels being “knocked” out of alignment with an event like a major crash, hitting a pothole, curb or some other object. While these can certainly take your wheels out of alignment, the bumps and bounces of everyday Memphis driving take their toll on wheel alignment as well. Your car can lose alignment over time with just normal driving. When your wheels are out of alignment, the team of automotive professionals at Allen's Automotive Center in Memphis can return your wheels to the factory settings. Most owners’ manuals suggest an inspection every year or two.Give us a call.Allen's Automotive Center1195 WINFIELD AVE.Memphis, Tennessee 3811690

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Alignment

Need a New Battery? Call Allen's Automotive Center Today

Hello Memphis drivers! Need a new battery? There is a good chance that you do – 70% of batteries need to be replaced within four years. As your battery discharges and then recharges as you drive around Memphis, bits of the surface of the battery plates disintegrate. As this process continues over a few years, the alternator has to work harder to supplement the battery charge. Over time, enough of the battery is damaged that it can no longer hold a charge and it needs to be replaced. This also speeds up wear on the alternator.Your Allen's Automotive Center service advisor can help you determine the right vehicle replacement battery for the way you drive around Memphis, as well as the Tennessee climate and durability needs.Contact Allen's Automotive Center for information on battery replacement.Give us a call. Allen's Automotive Center 1195 WINFIELD AVE. Memphis, Tennessee 38116 901

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Battery

The Best Test

Would you buy a jacket without even trying it on? Probably not, but it might surprise you that one study shows about half the people buy a vehicle after a short test drive around the block or none at all.  If you're in the market for another vehicle, make sure you check out the most important things so you'll know if that's the right vehicle for you. Check out the gadgets.  Love a good sound system? Then turn it up loud.  Does it have enough bass for you? See how you like its navigation system if it has one.  Try pairing your Bluetooth smartphone with the vehicle.  Test out how to set the cruise control and how steady it keeps the speed. Back up and check out the rearview camera. If you buy this vehicle, you'll have to live with all of these things every time you drive. Test the vehicle on roads you know.  See how it handles bumps and potholes, how it takes that tight curve that you drive every day to and from work.  Driving on familiar roads gives yo ... read more