Yearly Archives: 2022

Norfolk Drivers Ask: What Should I Do After a Car Accident?

Getting into a car accident can ruin a lot more than just your day. So, consider these tips to make sure the damages aren't worse than you originally think:   1. Make sure everyone is ok, and call 911 to report the accident. Not only will this help in case of serious injury, but it will also enable official documentation - which may save you a lot of frustration and money later.   2. Call your insurance agent to find out what information he/she needs.  Listen to any advice based on their experience and based on your coverage and role in the accident. 3. Exchange insurance and contact information with the driver of the other vehicle. If you can, take your own photos of the scene and damage with your cell phone.   4. Follow the directions of your agent to file a claim, if necessary, and consider the repairs that might be needed. But remember, if your insurance agent tells you that you have to use a certain shop, check the laws in VA. Many states prohibit insur ... read more

Why Is My Car A/C Blowing Hot Air?

Why Is My Car A/C Blowing Hot Air?

Now that summer is here in Norfolk, VA, you can expect the temperatures to go up higher and higher. When it is hot, you naturally crank up the A/C whenever you get into your car. If it is the first time you’ve turned your auto air conditioning on since winter and you’re greeted with warm/hot air, what should you do? Well – you shouldn’t panic because tons of drivers have dealt with the same problem.    When you bring your car to Carmasters Automotive, the experts can crack down on your car’s air conditioning system. Below are some of the common explanations for warm or hot A/C. Low Refrigerant - Refrigerant is the substance responsible for cooling the air that gets blown out of your vents. When you run low on it, it means that a leak exists in the system. At our auto repair shop, we can fix the problem by repairing the leak and recharging your car vehicle with refrigerant.  Broken A/C Compressor - The compressor is where the entire proce ... read more

Used Car Inspection at Carmasters Automotive in Norfolk

It's natural for Norfolk drivers to be a little anxious when they buy a used car in the Norfolk area; you worry that it has something wrong with it or that it hasn't been well maintained. If it's possible, bring the vehicle in for a used car inspection at Carmasters Automotive. Your friendly and knowledgeable Carmasters Automotive service advisor can tell you if there are current or emerging problems. The peace of mind is well worth the price of the inspection service. It's also important for Norfolk drivers to get on track with the maintenance schedule and stay on track. If you don't have maintenance records for the vehicle, assume the worst and get started with an oil change at Carma ... read more

Color Coding Your Vehicle’s Fluid Leak

Color Coding Your Vehicle’s Fluid Leak

We understand the anxiety you may feel after detecting a fluid leak underneath your car. If it is a substantial amount, you may need to get repairs ASAP. The best thing to do is get your vehicle into Carmasters Automotive LLC for an inspection. One aspect that will help us narrow down which fluid it could be is the fluid color. Here is our quick guide to fluid colors and what they could mean: Red/Pink - Red fluid is typically a transmission, but it can also be your power steering fluid. They can appear to be a lighter red/pink color as well. Orange - Orange fluid can be a coolant/antifreeze leak. However, it can be rusty condensation from the radiator Yellow - Coolant can also be a yellow-ish color. It can happen if there is a loose hose clamp or a broken o-ring.  Green - Green fluid is the most common color associated with antifreeze. As mentioned before, antifreeze leaks through all kinds of hoses, fittings, or clamps when they’ve worn out. Blue - Windshield wiper flu ... read more

Air Blend Box

You push a few buttons or turn some knobs, and voila, you have warm air blowing on your feet or cool air chilling your face. How does all that happen? Well, it’s all thanks to the air blend box. This box lives behind your dash and serves up just the right temperature of air right where you want it.   Let’s break it down. First there is the blower fan that circulates the air through the heating/air conditioning system. The fan can blow at different speeds, depending on how much hot or cold air you need to be comfortable. The blend box can either draw in fresh air from outside or recirculate air from inside the cabin. People often choose to recirculate air when first starting the vehicle until it starts to either cool down or warm up.   The next thing the blend box does is direct airflow over the heater core to warm the air, or over the air conditioner evaporator core to chill it – or a blend of hot and cold to get it just right. From there the blend box ca ... read more

Evaporative Emissions Control

The oil and fuel in your vehicle give off vapors that are very harmful to the environment. Evaporative emissions control systems – EVAP for short – are mandated in all cars and trucks. The EVAP system is there to capture these vapors and direct them into the engine to be burned – kind of an on-board recycling program. The EVAP system is a complicated network of hoses, valves, filters and such. Issues with the EVAP system are in the top 5 reasons for a Check Engine light to be illuminated. Your friendly and knowledgeable Carmasters Automotive service advisor can pull the trouble codes and begin a diagnostic procedure to isolate the fault. With the proper equipment, your technician can test the valves in order to trace a blockage. A low pressure smoke test can be performed to find any leaks. The repairs are then made to get the EVAP system working again and to reset the Check Engine light. While EVAP problems don't generally lead to vehicle damage, the fact that ... read more

A Few "Key" Facts (Ignition Key Issues)

You expect your key to turn in your vehicle's ignition.  But sometimes it won't, and that's a problem, whether you're trying to start your vehicle or trying to leave it.    Several things can cause this.  One of the most common is that the steering column locking mechanism is stuck.  Locking steering columns are an anti-theft feature introduced in the 1970s.  If yours is sticking, try moving the steering wheel a little from side to side as you turn the key; sometimes it will release.    A key may also stick if the vehicle is in gear.  Most vehicles will only let you start in neutral or park.  If you have an automatic transmission vehicle, make sure it's in park. Move the shift lever through the gears and back into park to make sure. If the key still doesn't turn, you can try jiggling the shift lever as you turn the key.  Electrical and mechanical contacts sometimes don't line up properly, and a little ... read more

5 of the Best Car Scenes of All-Time in Movies/TV

5 of the Best Car Scenes of All-Time in Movies/TV

1. The Fast and The Furious (2001) This scene from one of the most popular movies had your heart racing and blood pumping while you felt like you were right there in the car. Dominic and Brian are drag racing towards a speeding train in ultimate fast and furious style. When missing the speeding train, Dom's car crashes into an oncoming truck, spinning him into the air and coming down with a crash. With the police on their way to the impact, Brian saves the day and helps Dom make a quick escape. 2. Italian Job (1969) Another impressive scene is the classic car chase from Italian Job. That six-minute-long chase scene is one of the greatest cinema moments viewed by many. The three Minis (Red, White, and Blue) race up some stairs and even buildings as they keep one step ahead of the police. 3. Harry Potter Chamber of Secrets (2002) This modern film has many magical moments. But that scene when Harry and Ron miss the Hogwarts Express was truly memorable. Especially when they jump i ... read more

Simple Answers from Carmasters Automotive in Norfolk: Transmission Service

Question My friend just had a very expensive transmission repair.  How can I avoid transmission trouble?   Answer Next to your engine, your transmission is the most expensive component in your vehicle – so you want to do all you can to avoid transmission repairs.   You may have noticed a trend of engines becoming more and more powerful in recent years.  At the same time, fuel economy has been improving in nearly every motor vehicle segment.  More power and better fuel economy have always been at odds.  Some of the improvement in fuel economy has been due to engine design, but most of the increases in fuel economy can be credited to advances in transmission technology. Every engine has a sweet spot in which it most efficiently makes power.  This is often referred to as the power band – the optimal engine speed (measured in revolutions per minute, or RPM).  The computers that control what gear your automatic transmission is in try ... read more

"What is Synthetic Oil, and Should I Use It?"

Question What is synthetic oil, and should I use it? Answer Regular oil, also called conventional oil, comes from dead dinosaurs.  Conventional oil molecules are long hydrocarbon chains of various lengths.  Imagine a bunch of pencils – some used and some brand new. Synthetic oil is often more highly refined petroleum-based oil.  The molecules are shorter and closer to the same length.  Think a bunch of those little golf pencils. Some synthetic oil is man-made.  The molecules are rounder and much more uniform.  Think marbles. So, you can see that as you progress from conventional oil to synthetic blends (a mixture of conventional and synthetic) to full synthetic oil, there will be less friction in your engine.  Less friction means less heat – so better lubrication and protection against wear.  Synthetic blends and full synthetics also cost more. Synthetic oil is more resistant to thermal breakdown so less sludge (which can clog ... read more

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