Articles:

Timing Belt

Timing Belt

Let's address a very important maintenance item for everyone – timing belt replacement. It's important because letting this one slide can lead to very expensive engine damage. Your timing belt choreographs the timing of your combustion process. Your pistons travel up and down in the cylinder. Intake valves open at the right time to let in air and fuel; they close at the right time to allow the fuel to burn and then the exhaust valves open at the right time to let out the exhaust. All this happens thousands of times a minute and it's your timing belt that makes sure the valves are opening and closing at precisely the right time. If the timing is off, your engine won't run. And that's the best case. The worst case is that a valve is opening at the wrong time and collides with the piston. The res ... read more

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2018

AC - Keep the cool air coming in your vehicle

AC - Keep the cool air coming in your vehicle

Let's talk about air conditioning service and repair issues for the Kansas City area. Most of us in Gardner and Olathe don't give our air conditioning a second thought as long as it's making cold air. But it's a complex and expensive system that we should think about before it starts blowing hot air. The refrigerant in the air conditioner contains a special oil that lubricates and cools the A/C parts. When enough refrigerant leaks out, your air conditioner still makes cold air, but the parts don't have enough oil to protect them and they wear out faster than they should. So it's important to service the air conditioner as recommended. Replacing old refrigerant has another benefit: refrigerant tends to gather moisture and become corrosive. That causes leaks in the system which can be expensive to repair. Fresh refrigerant protects the air conditioning components and keeps the system operating at peak efficiency so ... read more

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2018

Shocks and Struts

Shocks and Struts

  Let's talk shocks and struts. Shock absorbers and struts last a long time for drivers and wear out pretty slowly for most vehicles. They're easy to take for granted, but your shocks and struts do a very important job so you need to pay attention to them. They keep your tires on the road; and your tires are what connect your vehicle to the road and allow you to safely handle your car through turns, over bumps and even stop in time. What happens when your shocks and struts are worn? Your tires bounce excessively over bumps. Your vehicle will wallow through corners, your front-end will dive when you stop and your rear-end will squat when you accelerate. All this hurts your ability to control your vehicle. And your ride just isn't as comfortable. Tire Wear Worn shocks or struts cause excessive tire wear so drivers will have to replace their tires sooner than they should. Worn shocks and struts also stress other ... read more

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2018

Vent Cleaning

Ever get musky odors coming from your car's air vents? It's fairly common for  Gardner and Olathe drivers. Moisture can accumulate in the air conditioning/heating ventilation system allowing mold, mildew, fungus, and bacteria to grow. Disinfecting and deodorizing is a process. Depending on how bad the problem is, there are a couple of approaches Bret's Autoworks may take to get rid of the unwanted smells. For mild situations (especially on newer vehicles), a special deodorizing disinfectant is introduced into the ventilation system. This may be an aerosol or a mist application. The treatment kills the offending organisms and deodorizes the system. Sometimes in older vehicles, a good deal of mildew or other microorganisms can grow on the air conditioning evaporator which is housed in the heating/air conditioning air blend box behind the dashboard. In cases like this Bret's Autoworks fills the blend box with disinfecting foam that can eliminate stubborn organisms a ... read more

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2018

Anti-Lock Brakes

Imagine you are driving on a snowy or rainy KS road. You need to slam on your brakes and your rear wheels lock up. Chances are good that the rear end of your vehicle will try to pass the front end and you can easily lose control. What would happen in the same circumstance if your front wheels locked up? Well you certainly would not be able to steer properly and your front end would go to wherever momentum leads it. The ABS modulates your brakes on and off as many as 15 times a second. This keeps your wheels from locking up while providing the greatest amount of braking possible. You are better able to steer your vehicle and maintain control. Olathe service advisors often talk about the 3 S's of anti-lock brakes: Stomp – Stay – Steer. Stomp on the brake, Stay on the brake and Steer normally. Modern anti-lock brake systems  utilize a computer to receive information from sensors and control the ABS. There are wheel speed sensors at each wheel rep ... read more

Categories:

2018

Bret's Autoworks is very proud of the staff they have maintained over our 30 + years in Olathe.

Bret's Autoworks is very proud of the staff they have maintained over our 30 + years in Olathe.

On rare occasions we find ourselves looking for a new member to complement our team.Although we have technicians who have been working for us for many years every once in a while we find someone who we feel will be a "perfect fit" in our shop. Enter Jake Hamm, a young man who fits well into our beliefs of "excellent customer service" and honesty and integrity! Jake's family moved to the Gardner area when he was in 6th grade.  He attended Gardner / Edgerton high school and took several Automotive Technology classes. It was clear he loved cars and it especially took root when he purchased his first car, a Pontiac Firebird. Jake graduated from high school and took a job at the local Ford dealer where he worked in the Quick Lane Service area.  Jake played sports with Luke Fischer, son of Shawn Fischer the owner of Bret’s. When word got out that Jake might be interested in a more challenging line of work he interviewed at Bret's, and the re ... read more

Categories:

2018

Tires - Buy Value, Not Price

New tires are a big ticket item for most drivers. You're not only concerned about the price, but you want to know that it'll be a long time before you need to buy new tires again. And of course there's the safety aspect as well. The tires do a lot of work – they carry the weight of the vehicle and you and your passengers around. They need to be up to the task. You want to be sure they hold the road and provide good traction. Drivers who carry heavy loads or tow a trailer need a high load tires to be up for the job. The tire professionals at Bret's Autoworks think it's important that  drivers understand the effect of price on a tire's performance and durability. The major tire brands sold in the area that you're familiar with are known in KS as&nbs ... read more

Categories:

2018

Tags:

Tires

Bret's Autoworks Maintenance for High Mileage Vehicles

Reports say that the median age for cars on the road is over nine years and that two-thirds have over 75,000 miles (120,000 kilometers). In recent years those numbers have continued to rise here in Gardner and across KS. Many Gardner & Olathe  residents are keeping their vehicles longer. The KS economy has influenced that, but the fact that modern cars and trucks are more durable and reliable means that owning a high mileage vehicle doesn't have to be a painful experience for Gardner or Olathe.  Gardner & Olathe drivers with over 100,000 miles (160,000 kilometers) on their vehicles often ask us at Bret's Autoworks about what service intervals they should follow. Let's start with the special needs of the older vehicle. The reality is that time and mileage will take its toll. The engine and transmission will have more sludge. The fuel, steering and brake systems will have gum and varnish built up ... read more

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2018

From our Family to Yours

Bret’s Autoworks made the New Year a bit brighter for a local family, donating a van to the family with the assistance of the Southwest Johnson County Multi-Service Center. Smiles, laughter and a few tears filled the afternoon as the family was handed the keys to their van. “I am proud to be part of a community that truly takes care of one another. This was combined effort of Bret’s, the wonderful staff at the Multi-Service Center,” says Leo Murry co-owner of Bret’s, "and to Gardner Napa Auto Parts for parts donations on the van". The family drove away with a new sense of freedom because they now have a vehicle to call their own! “This is a great family, we were so happy to donate the van. Thanks to the Multi-Service Center for introducing us and providing the opportunity to help”, states Shawn Fischer co-owner of Bret’s Autoworks

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2018

A picture is worth a thousand words! In this case two pictures!

A picture is worth a thousand words! In this case two pictures!

This might just look like some really worn tires, and while that is true, the real culprit is on of alignment. This is what could happen when tires are not put up on a lift and checked during a routine maintenance for rotation and alignment.  The wear and tear on the tire ion the left s completely   through to the backside of the inner lining.  The wear on the tire on the right is through to the steel belts.  In both cases, the wear and tear occurred on the interior edge, so if the tires are just inspected on the ground, the side facing out, might look just fine. 

Categories:

2018

Tags:

Tires
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