Hello, Chesapeake auto owners. Let’s talk fuel filters. Fuel filters clean the dirt, dust and debris out of your fuel. Both gasoline and diesel-powered engines have them. The fuel filter is located in the fuel line between the fuel tank and the engine.
Chesapeake drivers don’t need to filter their fuel because it has lots of grit in it; they need to filter it because it has some grit it in. Any dirt is bad for your engine. The cleaner the fuel, the better an engine will run.
Over time, the small amounts of rust, dirt and contaminants in your fuel settle out inside the fuel tank. After about five years, this can amount to a quite a bit of sediment. This means that as your van ages, your fuel filter has to work harder to screen your fuel: more sediment in your tank means more potential for grit in your fuel.
The harder your fuel filter works, the more often it needs to be replaced. Check with your van owner’s manual or West Service Center, Inc. to find out how often it should be serviced and how long you can expect it to last. You should change it before it becomes clogged. Your West Service Center, Inc. technician can help you with recommended replacement schedules.
If your fuel filter becomes clogged, your engine will sputter when you drive at Virginia highway speeds or when you accelerate rapidly. A clogged filter allows enough fuel to run the car at low speeds around town in Chesapeake, but when you need a higher flow of fuel for faster speeds, or if you need a sudden burst of fuel, you just won’t be able to get it through the filter.
A clogged filter is actually dangerous. If you need to accelerate suddenly out of the path of danger, you just won’t have the power to do it.
Fuel filters have a bypass valve. When the filter becomes clogged, the valve allows some fuel to bypass the filter so the engine can keep running – just not enough to be running well.
That means, though, that dirty, unfiltered fuel is entering your engine. Instead of clogging up your filter, that dirt is now getting into your fuel injectors, where it can cause serious damage. Fuel injectors are expensive; fuel filters are cheap. It doesn’t seem like a difficult choice for Chesapeake car owners.
Fuel filters are the epitome of preventive maintenance. They are cheap and easy to change, but neglecting them can lead to expensive repair bills. Some fuel filters are inside the fuel tank and cannot be routinely serviced – your honest West Service Center, Inc. service advisor will be able to tell you if this applies to your vehicle.
Good car care for Chesapeake motorists means following recommended schedules for preventive maintenance, including changing your fuel filters. Take the auto advice offered at West Service Center, Inc. and in every owner’s manual and have your vehicle regularly inspected. It may save you money by preventing costly repairs, but it will also repay you in improved fuel economy, safety and peace of mind.
Diesel engines have been used extensively in Europe and Asia for many years. They haven’t been as common in Chesapeake because of the high sulfur content in our diesel fuel. But the government is now mandating lower sulfur content and, as a result, we are going to see more Chesapeake drivers driving diesel-fueled vehicles on the road, especially in passenger cars and SUV’s.
Diesels are popular in Chesapeake because they get better MPG than gas-powered engines. They also last longer. Modern diesel engines are quiet and powerful. And if you associate diesel engines with black smoke, then you’re not up with the times. That smoke is a thing of the past.
Diesels don’t produce any more pollutants than gasoline engines. The pollution standards for diesel-powered vehicles are as strict in Virginia as for other vehicles.
Also, diesel engines can run on bio-diesel fuels as well as fossil fuels. Diesel fuel can be produced from vegetable oil or from cellulosic waste like wood chips and sawdust. In Chesapeake, we may soon see bio-diesel produced from algae. These fuel sources will lessen Chesapeake car owners’ dependence on fossil fuels and may even become truly renewable and sustainable.
Diesel-powered vehicles perform as well as other passenger vehicles, also. Most Suffolk people don’t notice a difference in driving one or the other. If you haul heavy loads or tow a trailer in Norfolk, however, the diesel is a definite improvement.
So, you may be asking, if diesels are so great, why don’t all Chesapeake drivers drive them? Surely there are disadvantages you haven’t told me about. That’s true. Diesel engines are heavier than gas engines, and they cost more in Virginia. The better gas mileage of the diesel engine is partially offset by the higher purchase price.
Because of higher fuel prices, diesel engines used to be more pricey to drive in Chesapeake. But now, with higher volatility in the prices of both gasoline and diesel fuel in Virginia, that cost difference is less definitive. Whether a diesel or gas engine is more expensive for Chesapeake auto owners depends now on the current price of fuel in Virginia and how many miles you drive.
Consider also that diesel-powered vehicles have a high resale value in the Chesapeake area, and the costs of owning and operating a diesel vs. a gas-powered vehicle in Virginia becomes a real toss-up.
Preventive auto maintenance for diesel vehicles has also become similar to that of gas-fueled vehicles in recent years. The major difference is that diesels require cleaner fuel, air and oil, so their filters are more expensive in Chesapeake than those for gasoline engines. The engine air filter must be changed more frequently as well.
The costs for car care and repairs in Chesapeake are similar. Wait, you may be thinking, but you just told me that filters are more expensive and have to be changed more regularly. True, but that is offset by the fact that diesel engines have a much longer lifetime than gasoline engines. So if you are the type of owner who prefers to hang on to a vehicle for a long time, you will be more than rewarded with a diesel engine.
So if you have been looking for West Service Center, Inc. auto advice on whether to switch to a diesel vehicle or stay with a gas-powered one, then we hope this helps. The answer as to which type of vehicle is better is that it depends on the Chesapeake driver and their driving habits. Now that you know the facts, you can make an informed choice based on your own priorities and needs.
If you’re a quart low in your van, there isn’t enough motor oil to lubricate your engine properly. The extra friction causes drag that reduces fuel economy while you’re driving around the Chesapeake area.
The transmission also needs the proper amount of clean fluid to do its work. When it’s in need of service, the transmission drags your fuel economy down.
So keep it clean and give yourself a fighting chance.
West Service Center, Inc.
904 Cavalier Blvd
Chesapeake, Virginia 23323
Chesapeake auto owners know that engines burn fuel to operate. Fuel is pumped from your fuel tank to your engine where it is squirted—or injected—into your engine’s cylinders. This is the function of the fuel injectors.
There are two ways to inject fuel into an engine. Fuel needs air to burn, so in the first method, fuel is injected into a port and allowed to mix with air and before it is drawn into the cylinders. In the second method, fuel is injected directly into the cylinders and mixes with air after it enters the engine.
Direct injection engines burn fuel more efficiently than conventional engines. Some models can deliver the power of a V8 with the economy of a V6.
For example, in one family of engines, the conventional version (a V6) delivers about 250 horsepower. The direct injection version delivers over 300 horsepower and gets about the same fuel economy. The turbocharged version delivers 350 horsepower.
Why the big difference in power? Direct injection systems allow fuel to be squirted into the engine at hundreds of times the pressure of a conventional engine. This atomizes the fuel better (breaks it down into tinier droplets), which means more of it gets burned, which translates to more power for your engine. It also results in cleaner emissions and improved MPG.
Fuel injectors are precision instruments. They have to deliver the right amount of fuel at exactly the time the engine needs it. They are also engineered to inject fuel with a specific spray pattern. This spray pattern allows for maximum fuel efficiency and proper atomization.
Direct injection engines require a much higher degree of precision than conventional engines. For this reason, they are equipped with more sophisticated computers.
When fuel injectors get dirty, their precision drops off. The spray pattern won’t be precise, and the timing of fuel delivery may be off. This decreases fuel efficiency and gas mileage for Chesapeake auto owners as well as delivering less power to the engine.
Fuel injectors are not cheap to replace. Direct injection fuel injectors are even more expensive. And we’re talking a mortgage payment to buy a set of new fuel injectors for a diesel engine.
So keeping your fuel injectors clean is just good auto advice for Chesapeake car owners. The best way to do this is to change your air and fuel filters regularly and practice other habits of good car care and preventive maintenance at West Service Center, Inc. in Chesapeake. Cleaning additives in your fuel can also help.
If you do end up with gum or varnish in your fuel system, you’ll need a professional fuel system cleaning. This will clean out your whole system, including the injectors. The good news is that with proper maintenance, your fuel injectors will last for a long time.
A lot of gas is wasted in the Norfolk area by dirty fuel delivery systems.
Let’s start at the tank. The gas tank gathers dirt, rust and sediment over the years. That’s why there’s a fuel filter to clean the fuel after it leaves the tank. A dirty filter will rob the engine of the clean gas it needs to run efficiently.
The fuel intake components get coated with gum and varnish over time. This results in fuel being delivered inefficiently and some of that gunk getting into the engine. A fuel system service at West Service Center, Inc. will leave your intake as clean as a whistle.
The big fuel thief is dirty fuel injectors. They deliver fuel to the engine at a specified pressure and in a particular spray pattern. When they’re clogged, the fuel doesn’t get atomized the way it’s supposed to and doesn’t get burned as efficiently.
See your owner’s manual or ask your Norfolk service advisor at West Service Center, Inc. when a fuel system cleaning is recommended.
Is your car sometimes hard to start on an early Chesapeake morning? When you turn the key, does it hesitate or stutter? If so, the problem could be the result of a dirty fuel system. Your car’s fuel system starts with the air filter and ends in the top of your engine. Over time, different parts of the system get dirty, which robs you of performance and hurts your MPG.
Most Chesapeake motorists have fuel injectors, rather than a carburetor. Fuel injection systems have fewer problems and require less adjustment. But they still need to be properly maintained. This is why your owner’s manual has a schedule for cleaning your fuel injectors and other critical parts of your fuel system.
Some Chesapeake car owners are interested in buying fuel system cleaners that they can pour into your gas tank. You can do that – and there are lots of great products available that can help maintain an already clean fuel system – but these products cannot do a major cleaning. For that, you need to see West Service Center, Inc.. West Service Center, Inc. has the professional tools and chemicals to really do a complete service.
West Service Center, Inc. uses a process that gives your car a deep, professional fuel system cleaning. You need to remove particles, gum and varnish from your fuel system and get those injectors running cleanly and efficiently. After a professional fuel system cleaning, you’ll notice more power, better fuel efficiency and reduced exhaust emissions.
The cleaners also help prevent rust and corrosion in your fuel system and lubricate essential engine parts.
Fuel system cleaning is just one of those important recommended service items that helps keep your van running strong. As with all maintenance, it can help avoid pricey repairs that often result from not taking the right preventive steps. Chesapeake motorists will notice the difference in how well their car runs. Check with your honest West Service Center, Inc. technician to see when your car is scheduled for a fuel system cleaning.
An ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure for Chesapeake motorists.
The team at West Service Center, Inc. in Chesapeake and Virginia car owners are all talking fuel economy right now. Better gas mileage. Fewer emissions. Chesapeake auto owners want to save the environment and their pocketbooks.
And we all know—or should know—that preventive maintenance will help maximize MPG. But is there something more Chesapeake car owners can do? After all, some of us Chesapeake folks can’t cut back on our driving, and others would like to do more to economize.
Weight is one major enemy of fuel economy. The more you lug around in your vehicle, the more fuel you have to burn to get from Chesapeake to Portsmouth. And that means buying more gas in Chesapeake and producing more emissions.
Of course, your van’s weight isn’t negotiable. And you can’t do much about the weight of your passengers. And this isn’t an article about diet and exercise.
But look around your van. Are you hauling a bunch of unnecessary weight around Virginia? Do you really need your golf clubs every time you leave your Chesapeake home? Store sports equipment in the garage. Load it when you need it and store it when you don’t. Who knows? The extra exercise just might reduce the other type of weight in your vehicle.
The same goes for anything else in your car: make-up kits, music collections, extra electronics, spare clothing; whatever your particular extras may be. Pack it when you need it; store it when you don’t.
Clean out your Chesapeake. You’d be surprised how much weight you’re lugging around Chesapeake in plain old junk. Toss old papers, leftover food, and regular old dirt. Even if it’s not a lot of weight, you’ll feel better when you get into your car. A good cleaning is also part of good car care.
Now, don’t toss stuff you really do need. You do need that spare tire—the one in your trunk. And a kit of emergency essentials is not a bad idea. But just carry around the day-to-day essentials. You can pack a more extensive kit and store it in your garage, then toss it in your Chesapeake when you go on a longer trip, but you don’t have to lug it around all the time. After all, are you a driver? Or are you a junk chauffeur?
Lose the junk and save some money in Chesapeake.
Chesapeake auto owners know that engines need to burn fuel to operate. Fuel is pumped from your fuel tank to your van engine where it is squirted—or injected—into your engine’s cylinders. This is the function of the fuel injectors.
There are two ways to inject fuel into an engine. Fuel needs air to burn, so in the first method, fuel is injected into a port and allowed to mix with air and before it is drawn into the cylinders. In the second method, fuel is injected directly into the cylinders and mixes with air after it enters the van engine.
Direct injection engines burn fuel more efficiently than conventional van engines. Some models can deliver the power of a V8 with the economy of a V6.
For example, in one family of engines, the conventional version (a V6) delivers about 250 horsepower. The direct injection version delivers over 300 horsepower and gets about the same gas mileage. The turbocharged version delivers 350 horsepower.
Why the big difference in power? Direct injection systems allow fuel to be squirted into the van engine at hundreds of times the pressure of a conventional engine. This atomizes the fuel better (breaks it down into tinier droplets), which means more of it gets burned, which translates to more power for your engine. It also results in cleaner emissions.
Fuel injectors are precision instruments. They have to deliver the right amount of fuel at exactly the time the van engine needs it. They are also engineered to inject fuel with a specific spray pattern. This spray pattern allows for maximum fuel efficiency and proper atomization. Direct injection engines require a much higher degree of precision than conventional engines. For this reason, they are equipped with more sophisticated computers.
When fuel injectors get dirty, their precision drops off. The spray pattern won’t be precise, and the timing of fuel delivery may be off. This decreases fuel efficiency and gas mileage as well as delivering less power to the engine.
Chesapeake motorists should understand that fuel injectors are not cheap to replace. Direct injection fuel injectors are even more pricey. And we’re talking a mortgage payment to buy a set of new fuel injectors for a diesel engine.
So keeping your fuel injectors clean is just good auto advice. The best way to do this is to change your air and fuel filters regularly and practice other habits of good car care and preventive maintenance. Cleaning additives in your fuel can also help.
If you do end up with gum or varnish in your fuel system, you’ll need a professional fuel system cleaning. This will clean out your whole system, including the injectors. The good news is that with proper maintenance, Chesapeake auto owners will enjoy better fuel economy and their fuel injectors will last for a long time.
One topic that hits the news in Chesapeake on a regular basis is the price of gas. The answer for some Virginia motorists is to buy a vehicle that gets better fuel efficiency. For those of us Chesapeake motorists who don’t want to add a car payment to our monthly expenses, we need to improve our fuel economy any way we can.
Following recommended service intervals by coming into West Service Center, Inc. is one of the best ways Chesapeake car owners can keep their minivan running efficiently. That means better fuel efficiency. When you give it some thought, it only makes sense. Dirty oil or transmission fluid can’t lubricate or clean. That means more drag which reduces fuel efficiency.
Keeping up with scheduled oil changes and transmission services will save gas for Virginia drivers.
Dirty engine air filters are another efficiency pirate. They rob your truck engine of enough air to effectively burn the fuel, so you need more gas to get the job done. Replacing a dirty air filter can pay for itself in fuel savings before the next oil change.
You can imagine what dirty fuel injectors can do to your van as you drive around Chesapeake. If your truck owner’s manual recommends a fuel system cleaning, come into West Service Center, Inc. and ask us to get it done for you.
A simple, but very effective way for Chesapeake drivers to save gas is to keep their tires properly inflated. Low tires can cost you up to a mile per gallon. Check your tire pressure when you gas up – or at least once a month.
West Service Center, Inc.
904 Cavalier Blvd
Chesapeake, Virginia 23323
Here’s a question for Chesapeake, Virginia motorists: How long have you been enjoying the romantic glow of your check engine light?
Hey, it’s not there to create ambiance; it’s a warning that something’s wrong. (And, by the way, Homer Simpson’s fix of covering it with tape is not a good idea.)
If your check engine light comes on, check your gas cap. A loose gas cap can cause a false sensor reading that’ll make the check engine light turn on.
If your date’s eyes are smoldering in the soft glow of the check engine light, try to think of all the gas money you’ll save by getting it fixed. Give West Service Center, Inc. a call when you are ready: 757-487-4420