There's always something new at CJ's Tire! For information on community events, new products and services, and the latest CJ's happenings, browse the stories below:
Spring is Here
Spring is here, and just like your house may need a spring cleaning, your vehicle may need a spring tune-up. It is a good idea to bring your car in to CJ’ to prevent a domino effect of things going wrong. If you skip regular tune-ups, just one malfunction can affect many other parts of your vehicle. Before you know it, you might have a hefty repair bill!
Also, if you plan to spend your spring and summer vacations on the road, it is always important to make sure your vehicle will get you to where you want to go! A good way to ruin a vacation is to end up spending half of it waiting for repairs at an unfamiliar shop. To avoid this, it is important to let CJ’s help keep you on top of your vehicle’s regular maintenance schedule.
At CJ’s we’re happy to provide our customers with a complimentary safety inspection with every visit. Springtime is also the perfect time for checking your vehicle’s cooling system. Our technicians can pressure test the system for leaks, inspect all connections, and check the condition of your belts, hoses, and coolant mix. If your cooling system fails, you cannot drive your car. No one wants to be stranded on a beautiful spring or summer day because they didn't have their cooling system checked.
Another benefit of regular checkups is that they may prevent you from getting in an accident. What if you didn't get your brakes checked and they failed right when you least expected it? Not only could this endanger your life (and the lives of your passengers), it can also make your auto insurance costs go up, not to mention the repair costs for the damage to your car.
Not only does an annual spring tune-up help to prevent unwanted breakdowns, they also help you save money on gas. A poorly tuned engine can use up to 50 percent more gas than one that is running well. As gas is by no means cheap these days, why would you want to fill up your engine twice as often if you could have prevented it?
Here are some other tips, besides keeping your engine well tuned, to help save you gas:
- Drive at Steady Speeds. Driving steadily at the speed limit can really help cut down on your vehicle's gas consumption. Stops and starts take more gas, so try to anticipate stops and traffic flow ahead of you as much as possible. Driving your car too fast can really cost you, both with regard to gas and the speeding ticket you might receive!
- Keep your tires properly inflated.The proper inflation for your tires should be specified in your owner's manual. If your tires are under-inflated, your vehicle will consume more gas when you drive.
- Try to minimize your driving.Try to plan one long trip instead of several short trips. If you can, try to carpool, use alternate transportation (buses, trains, subways) or ride your bike or walk if your destination is nearby and you can spare the time. These are obvious ways to save gas, and they have the additional benefit of helping to spare the environment.
Why not make an appointment for a safety inspection and/or a spring tune-up at CJ’s today? Remember that a spring tune-up can save you time and money!
Used Tires Unsafe According to Consumer Reports
YONKERS, N.Y. (April 17, 2013) — Consumer Reports (CR) magazine has waded into the debate about used tires, calling them
"unsafe at any speed."
Citing recent legislation crafted in Florida and Texas to regulate the sale of used tires, CR noted in a press release that used tires are
gaining traction in some states, "but consider them unsafe at any speed." The magazine said that "in this tough economy, buying a
used tire at the fraction of the cost of a new one is attractive and may even seem like a reasonable solution for replacing worn-out
tires. But it is not."
The magazine told its readers that states "face a challenge of getting 'unsafe' used tires out of the marketplace, but that goal just
leads to a less-bad solution." The guidelines defining unsafe tires "seem like common-sense directives, with sellers having to inspect
tires for exposed damage, including cuts, bulges, and improper repairs," it said.
"Retailers may go through this process, but a lot of used tires are sold by individuals online who may not inspect the tires at all."
Mentioning a previous article in CR—"Buying used tires can save you money, but are they too risky?"—the magazine said it's take
on the subject "is that it's never a good idea to buy used tires. Even if the tire looks like new, it could have hidden damage resulting
from abuse in its previous service life, or could have been sitting in the trunk of a car for years and simply aged beyond it useful life."
For piece of mind, CR advised, "always consider buying new tires. Prices vary significantly among the various models out there and
by retailer, so shop around. Also, ask the retailer what the total cost of the tire is including installation.
"Often you can you can get free mounting and balancing if you buy four tires at a time—something you are not likely to get when
buying used. Likewise, buying new ensures the retailer will take the old rubber and properly recycle it, saving you a step and
The magazine added that consumers should "err on the side of safety, and consider used tires for sale to be unsafe at any speed."
Copyright © 2013 Crain Communications Inc. All Rights Reserved.
s There a "Green Car" in Your Future?
With federal rules calling for mpg ratings in 2025 that will be nearly twice the current standards, it's no wonder that the cars we will see on the road in the next decade will change dramatically. And the change is coming quicker than you realize.
Even if you think you're not really interested in new technologies for improved fuel efficiency, it's likely that a car or truck with some type of electric drive or alternative fuel will wind up on your consideration list the next time you shop for a new vehicle.
On the market now there are nearly four dozen conventional hybrids, plug-in hybrids, battery-electric vehicles, diesels and fuel-cell electric vehicles planned for introduction in the U.S. from now through the 2015 model year. (Remember, these are new vehicles for the U.S. and are additions to alternative vehicles already on the market.)
Do You Need A Wheel Alignment?
Wheel alignment is preventive maintenance overlooked by most people. Wheel alignment not only prevents your car from pulling to one side or the other, it also can improve your tire life. It can help keep you and your family safe as well as save money with better gas mileage.
What is a Wheel Alignment Service?
Basically a wheel alignment is simply adjusting the angles of your vehicles' tire and wheel assemblies so they are basically parallel to each other and perpendicular to the ground.
Properly aligned tire/wheel assemblies will track straight and true, which not only helps with gas mileage, it also maximizes the life of the tire. In regards to safety, a properly aligned vehicle will not pull to the right or the left. Properly aligned vehicles achieve maximum traction on slippery surfaces which can be important when driving in less than ideal conditions. Your vehicle will also drive more smoothly.
Types of Wheel Alignments
The different types of alignments offered today are front-end, thrust angle, and four-wheel. During a front-end alignment, only the front axle's angles are measured and adjusted. Front-end alignments are fine for some vehicles featuring a solid rear axle, but confirming that the front tires are positioned directly in front of the rear tires is also important.
On a solid rear axle vehicle, this requires a thrust angle alignment that allows the technician to confirm that all four wheels are "square" with each other. Thrust angle alignments also identify vehicles that would "dog track" going down the road with the rear end offset from the front. If the thrust angle isn't zero on many solid rear axle vehicles, a trip to a frame straightening shop is required to return the rear axle to its original location.
On all vehicles with four-wheel independent suspensions, or front-wheel drive vehicles with adjustable rear suspensions, the appropriate alignment is a four-wheel alignment. This procedure "squares" the vehicle like a thrust angle alignment, and also includes measuring and adjusting the rear axle angles as well as the front.
How Often Should You Get A Wheel Alignment?
As a general rule you should follow your owner’s manual recommendations, but it is a good idea to have your tires and alignment checked every 10,000 miles or so. If your car is pulling to one side, the tires are wearing unevenly, or if your vehicle is shimming or wandering…you should have the vehicle checked immediately. CJ’s is happy to check your tires and alignment at NO CHARGE anytime.
7 Signs That Your Car Has Pothole Damage
A pothole can be your car’s worst enemy. These holes or pits on a road’s surface can seriously damage a vehicle’s ride control system. And wintertime always brings out the biggest and most troublesome potholes.
If you do drive over a pothole, CJ’s recommends that you have your car’s alignment and shocks or struts checked to make sure they aren’t damaged.
Shocks and struts control how vehicles ride and handle. They act as a cushion to dampen the bouncing action of a car’s springs. The springs absorb the road bumps; without them, the vehicle would continually bounce and bound down the road, making driving extremely difficult.
Shocks and struts also control spring and suspension movement to keep the tires in contact with the road. This affects steering, stability and braking. A broken shock or strut could alter the steering and handling of a vehicle and create driving dangers. It’s important to be aware of the warning signs that your vehicle’s shocks or struts may need to be replaced.
- The vehicle rolls or sways on turns.
- The vehicle’s front-end dives when braking.
- The vehicle’s rear end squats when accelerating.
- The vehicle bounces or slides sideways on a winding, rough road.
- The vehicle “bottoms out” or thumps on bumps.
- The vehicle sits lower in the front or rear.
- There’s a loss of directional control during sudden stops of the vehicle.
Many components affect a vehicle’s handling. Having your car inspected and its alignment checked, if you experience any of the above signs, is good preventive maintenance and can help its parts wear less and last longer. And at CJ’s a suspension safety inspection and alignment check are always free.
Top Five Ways to Make Your Car Run Forever
By Ronald Montoya, Consumer Advice Editor | Published Nov 3, 2000
Though we may set out to keep a car forever, not everyone will have the persistence — and luck — of Irv Gordon,
a man who holds the world record for having driven his 1966 Volvo P1800 for nearly 3 million miles. You can,
however, greatly extend the life of your vehicle, while simultaneously reducing the possibility of mechanical
mishaps. The following five items are basic and can apply to any vehicle.
1. Follow Your Vehicle's Service Schedule: This may seem like a no-brainer, but there are still too many car
owners out there who pay little or no attention to the vehicle maintenance schedule as laid out in the owner's
manual. "I follow the manufacturer's maintenance schedule, not the dealer's," says Gordon. "They built the car, so
they ought to know what's best for the car." Not following the maintenance schedule is particularly inexcusable in
late-model cars that have oil life monitoring systems that automatically determine the best time for an oil change.
Between the service indicator lights located in the gauge cluster of many new cars and the lengthy intervals
between required service (up to 20,000 miles in some models), there's no reason for skimping on proper
2. Check Fluids and Tire Pressure Regularly: Here's a task that takes about 10 minutes. With a rag in hand
and the engine cool, open the hood and pull out the oil dipstick. Wipe it clean, reinsert it and pull it out again for a
quick check of your oil — the most important engine fluid. Check the radiator overflow reservoir level and the
brake cylinder reservoir. Check the power steering fluid level and, while you're at it, check the hoses and belts for
any signs of wear or imminent failure. Give the air cleaner a look, too. Start the car and after it warms up, check
the transmission fluid level. Finally, with the tires cool, use a pressure gauge to make sure each tire has the
proper psi, as described in the owner's manual or in the tire manufacturer's specs. Ideally you should do these
checks once a week, but in the real world, once a month would be acceptable — except for tire pressure, which
really should be checked at least every other week.
3. Go Easy During Start-up: You might have heard this from someone who fires up his car and immediately
floors it: "It helps warm it up." Wrong. A cold engine — meaning one that's been sitting for more than five hours
— will have little or no oil left on the moving parts. It's all seeped down into the oil pan. It only takes a few
seconds after start-up for the oil pump to adequately lubricate an engine. During those few seconds, you should
keep engine rpm down to a minimum. Give the engine at least 30 seconds before popping it in gear and driving
off. Give it a little more time if it has sat for more than 24 hours.
4. Listen for Odd Noises: Turn off the radio once in a while and listen for any odd noises, both at idle and when
under way. Here are a few examples: A clicking noise when you are driving could be a nail stuck in a tire. A slight
scraping noise when you come to a stop could mean the brake pads have worn down to the warning indicator, and
this could mean it's time for new brake pads. A grinding or metal-on-metal scraping sound could mean a bushing
is destroyed or needs to be replaced. If you cannot pinpoint the source of the noise, take the car to your mechanic
to get a more informed opinion.
5. Drive Calmly: Take it easy on the car when you drive it. "Go easy on the brakes and don't drive it too hard,"
says Gordon. The occasional full-throttle acceleration or panic stop isn't going to hurt anything, but a constant
Ricky Roadracer attitude will reduce your car's road time and add to its downtime.
The same easy-does-it attitude applies to shifting gears, too. Make sure the car is completely stopped before
shifting into reverse, and be sure you're stopped before going back to a forward gear. That will avoid stress on the
transmission components. If you need more incentive for calm driving, how about money in your pocket?
Edmunds editors tested the tips and found that having a calm driving style improved fuel economy by about 35
Don't Panic Over Wear-and-Tear
These simple steps can be applied to just about any vehicle, and will help you take a proactive approach to
maintaining your vehicle. But don't be discouraged when things start to break down. Parts wear out on every car,
even those with excellent reputations for reliability. In almost all cases, it is cheaper to fix your car than to replace
These are our five tips for keeping your car running forever, but what is Irv Gordon's secret to reaching nearly 3
million miles? Drive the car like you love it. We couldn't agree more.
© Edmunds Inc. All Rights Reserved. This information was extracted from www.edmunds.com and is subject to the terms of
the Visitor Agreement at http://www.edmunds.com/about/visitor-agreement.html.
Parade Magazine Online Quiz: What's Your Winter Health IQ?
By Colleen Oakley
Freezing temps, slippery roads, holiday hazards— CJ's wants to help keep your family safe & healthy this winter.
Find out with our eight-question quiz.
Safe Driving Tips for the Holidays
Holiday events and celebrations can be exciting times for family and friends to get together. But, get-togethers with family and friends can turn into tragedies when people are killed or injured in traffic crashes.
As the holiday season is approaching, motorists need to be mindful of actions that will make their holiday travel safer. Drivers can protect themselves and their passengers by following these holiday travel rules.
AAA, Renewable Fuels Association chime in on ethanol
The American Automobile Association (AAA) says that the increasing use of ethanol in auto fuel is going to cause maintenance headaches for repair technicians in the long run.
A recent AAA survey reveals "a strong likelihood of consumer confusion and the potential for voided warranties and vehicle damage as a result of the Environmental Protection Agency’s recent approval of E15 gasoline."
According to the AAA, 95% of consumers surveyed have not heard of E15, a newly approved gasoline blend that contains up to 15% ethanol.
"With little consumer knowledge about E15 and less than 5% of cars on the road approved by auto makers to use the fuel, AAA is urging regulators and the industry to stop the sale of E15 until motorists are better protected."
The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) doesn't agree.
In response to the AAA survey, RFA CEO and President Bob Dinneen says AAA is biased.
"If AAA weren’t so deep in the Big Oil politics, they would stop manufacturing concern about the efficacy of ethanol blend use and report enthusiastically about ethanol’s consumer gasoline price savings. Their misplaced concern today, that E15 should be further tested before being offered for sale reflects a pathetic ignorance of EPA’s unprecedented test program before approving E15 for commercial use.
"The fact is, E15 has been the most aggressively and comprehensively tested fuel in the history of the agency. The miles driven on E15 equate to 12 round trips to the moon and back without a single failure, unless you want to count the deer that was killed on the test track! E15 is a safe fuel, as evidenced by the fact auto manufacturers are now providing warranty coverage for it.”
12 Cautions of Christmas!
CJ’s wants to everyone to be safe this holiday season, so please avoid the 12 Cautions of Christmas!
- Live Tree-if using a live tree, make sure it is fresh and keep it watered to avoid the risk of fire.
- Artificial Tree-be sure tree is marked “fire resistant” to help resist burning.
- Christmas Tree Fires-place your tree away from heat sources & water regularly.
- Outdoor Lights-be sure the lights you string outside are labeled for outdoor use.
- Breakable Ornaments-be sure to keep these out of the reach of children.
- Christmas Lights-be sure to unplug or turn off Christmas lights when you are leaving the house.
- Holiday Parties-designate a driver & be aware of others on the road who may have “over-celebrated”.
- Decorating-Annually in the U.S., there are 13,000 injuries from sharp objects or ladder falls, be careful!
- Wrapping Paper-Keep the paper away from the fireplace to avoid a flash fire.
- Heating Up-space heaters should be 3 ft away from anything combustible, stay warm, but be safe.
- Fireplace-keep your eye on the fire and your extinguisher close by.
- Cook With Care-to avoid kitchen fires and injuries.
One of every eight vehicles in the U.S. has at least one bald tire, according to the latest survey from the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), up from one in 10 just two years ago,
The RMA did not offer any specific reasons for the change, but a spokesman alluded to the recession and deferred maintenance.
The RMA said the survey results reflect the findings of a 2011 RMA survey that showed 64 percent of motorists did not know how to check tire tread depth and 9 percent said they never even tried to.
Bald tires cannot grip the road, leading to increased vehicle stopping distances and hydroplaning, resulting in loss of vehicle control, RMA Senior Vice President Dan Zielinski said.
"Checking tire tread is easy and inexpensive to do," Mr. Zielinski said. "All you need is a penny."
The "penny test" involves inserting a penny upside down into a tire's tread. If the entire top of Lincoln's head is visible, it's time to buy a new tire, he said.
The new survey was part of the RMA's ongoing consumer education program, "Be Tire Smart — Play Your PART."
PART is an acronym that refers to the four crucial aspects of tire care and maintenance: Pressure, Alignment, Rotation, and Tread.
The RMA reminded motorists that prematurely worn tires can result from a number of reasons:
- Pressure: Underinflation is the leading cause of tire wear. Check tire pressure monthly; use the correct inflation pressure for your vehicle (locate sticker on driver's door or refer to owner's manual); and check tires before you drive or wait three hours afterward;
- Alignment: Misalignment of wheels in the front or rear can cause uneven and rapid treadwear;
- Rotation: Regularly rotating your vehicle's tires (every 5,000-8,000 miles) will help achieve more uniform wear; and
- Tread: Advanced and unusual wear can reduce the ability of a tire's tread to grip the road in adverse conditions. Use the "penny test" to check tread depth.
Black Friday Shopping Begins in the Dark
Because so many people will be out and about this weekend shopping and many of the “big sales” begin at night and/or run through the night, we thought it appropriate to offer a few reminders for a safer nighttime driving experience.
Remember that nearly 90-percent of your reaction ability while driving relies on sight, and the ability to see goes down dramatically at night. Your depth perception, color recognition and peripheral vision all take a nosedive when the sun goes down. And of course at night you are more likely to have to content with drunk drivers, sleep-deprived driving zombies and errant animals. So...
1. Stay alert and sober. Avoid medications that can make you drowsy. Avoid carbohydrates. Get plenty of rest. Have someone join you. No alcohol...never drink and drive.
2. Check your lights. Make certain your headlights, tail and brake lights and turn signals are all working properly and that the lenses are clean and clear.
3. Take advantage of technology. Carry a cell phone in case of a breakdown or emergency…but don’t talk/text while driving. Use a GPS system to get you where you want to go.
4. Carry a roadside emergency kit with the following:
a. Jumper cables or battery re-charging device
b. Quart of oil
c. Bottled water (which can double as engine coolant)
d. Emergency roadside flares
f. Plastic tarp
g. "Multi-tool" handheld miniature toolkit
h. First aid kit with assortment of bandages
i. Flashlight and batteries
j. Nylon bag to keep everything contained and tidy
5. Be careful and cautious of any approach by strangers in a parking lot or even while filling your gas tank. When in your car, keep the doors locked and windows up. If approached by a stranger…don’t open your window or door. Remember to always lock your car and take your keys.
Avoid “Turkey” of a Weekend with Pre-Trip Vehicle Check
Some 43.6 million Americans are expected to travel at least 50 miles from home for the Thanksgiving holiday, a slight increase over the 43.3 million people who traveled last year, according to AAA projections.
Most people drive rather than fly to their Thanksgiving holiday destination, but even more are driving this year: Some 90% of travelers will travel by car, a 0.6 percent increase.
One way to avoid a turkey of a Thanksgiving road trip is to make sure the vehicle you will be driving is running well. A 10-minute pre-trip check is small potatoes compared to a big helping of inconvenience if you break down many miles away from home.
The CJ’s suggests the following 10-minute vehicle check to help ensure safety and reliability on the road:
- Check the tires, including tire pressure and tread. Uneven wear indicates a need for wheel alignment. Tires should also be checked for bulges and bald spots.
- Check all fluids, including engine oil, power steering and brake and transmission, as well as windshield washer solvent and antifreeze/coolant.
- Check the hoses and belts that can become cracked, brittle, frayed, loose or show signs of excessive wear. These are critical to the proper functioning of the electrical system, air conditioning, power steering and the cooling system.
- Check lighting to identify any problems with exterior and interior lighting as the chance of an accident increases if you can’t see or be seen.
- Check wipers. Wiper blades should be replaced every six months. Make sure the windshield wipers are working properly and keep the reservoir filled with solvent.
CJ’s also recommends that motorists restock their emergency kit and replacing gas caps that are damaged, loose or missing to prevent gas from spilling or evaporating. Also, to save on fuel costs during the trip, CJ’s cautions motorists to avoid aggressive driving, observe the speed limit and avoid excessive idling.
According to the American Automobile Association (AAA) drivers can expect a little relief at the gas pump. The national average price of gasoline will drop to between $3.25-3.40 a gallon by Thanksgiving. Despite this year's historically high prices, the national average has dropped by nearly 40 cents a gallon since early October and is likely to continue dropping through the end of the year.
Our Lititz store has earned the 3rd place Top Shop award in Customer Service from AAA Central PA.
Each time a customer visits our Lititz store, our associates will leave a AAA feedback card in the customer’s automobile. The customer is able to provide feedback regarding the service they received. There are approximately 59 stores that are competing in the Southeastern PA district and Lititz missed 1st place by a difference of .11%! In a 6 month period, our Lititz store received 292 excellent ratings, 30 good ratings and 1 fair rating. Providing exceptional service to our customers-another great example of representing who we are as a company.
NHTSA warns about counterfeit air bags
WASHINGTON (Oct. 10, 2012) — The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
has issued a consumer advisory to vehicle owners and independent repair professionals to beware
of counterfeit air bags that have entered the U.S. automotive aftermarket.
Anyone who has had an air bag replaced in the last three years by a repair shop that is not part of
a new-car dealership may be at risk, NHTSA warned. The agency urged motorists and
independent repairers to use only certified original equipment air bags for replacements.
VOLUNTARY RECALL MICHELIN, BFG & UNIROYAL
Michelin Americas Small Tires (MAST) has decided that a defect which relates to motor vehicle safety exists in certain BFGoodrich Commercial T/A® A/S and Uniroyal Laredo® HD/H™ brand replacement tires, and is recalling approximately 800,000 tires from the U.S. Market. These are typical fitments for commercial light truck vehicles and full size heavy duty vans.
If you have purchased commercial tires in sizes LT245/75R16 E and LT235/85R16 E, please contact CJ's Tire as soon as possible to have them replaced! We appreciate your business and care about the safety of our customers! If you have any questions, feel free to call or stop by your local CJ's location. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.
||40 years and Counting
CJ’s celebrated 40 years and looks forward to 40 more.
||MDA Black & Blue Ball - November 18th at Classic Harley Davidson in Leesport
Join us November 18th at Classic Harley Davidson in Leesport as CJ’s Tire is being presented with the Jeremy Carroll Foundation award for excellence in support the MDA program. Click here for information on how to make a donation!