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Common Car Killing Issues to Look Out For

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Image Courtesy of Flickr

Severe mechanical issues can result in the death of your car. When discovered, it is often too late. Looking for problems in the following areas can protect your car against future breakdowns.


Reduction in cooling, increased component wear and clogged passages can result from sludge produced by oxidation. When it accumulates, it destroys seals and bearings. When by-products cause oxidation, fuel pumps and filters cease to function, resulting in fuel injection failure.

Clogged Injection

Residue from carbon reduces efficiency when it builds up. This results in cooling and flow reduction as well as faulty combustion. If this is not quickly remedied the result is lost power in the engine, increased production of exhaust smoke, lessened fuel efficiency and injectors that will not last long.

Abrasion of Driveline

Distortion in the rear differential ring and pinion gears often result from lack of lubrication. Cracks due to stress make the surface gears weak, leading to further damage. Having excessive gear noise could mean that metal wear in the gearbox is taking place. Over time, this creates problems with seals and leakage.

Carbon from Fuel/Air Induction

Fuel vapors in the air intake create a sticky residue. When that happens, airflow is restricted and combustion is disrupted, resulting in decreased efficiency in the engine and poor fuel economy. These deposits also affect other devices, such as sensors.

Sludge in the Transmission

Transmissions can withstand extreme conditions, from very low to very high temperatures. As transmission fluid ages, it becomes thick and does not lubricate well and reduces the circulation needed to run. Particles generated from old fluid can result in irreversible damage within the transmission.

Power Steering Units

Power steering must be lubricated with quality products. If cheap lubricant is used, serious damage to gears, seals and bushings can result.

Cooling System

Water contains minerals which, when combined with coolant, can form a chemical reaction called “phosphate scale.” This covers the surfaces that transfer heat in the radiator, causing loss of transfer efficiency. As a result, the vehicle runs hot which can destroy the water pump bearings.

Contamination Due to Brake Fluid

Exposure to heat and moisture causes brake fluid to deteriorate. When additives inside the fluid are used up it can end up corroding the braking system.

Air Conditioning Contamination

An air conditioning system can become contaminated. This is the result of mildew and mold spores taking up residence in the A/C ducts. Since a car operated in a hot climate uses air conditioning often, the ducts never dry out. This space is ideal for mold growth. As a result, occupants of the car may suffer headaches, nausea and watery eyes.

Corrosion of the Battery

If a vehicle takes a while to crank the battery has lost its maximum charge. Corrosive buildup speeds the loss of current, causing premature battery failure.

Serious problems are expensive repairs. Keep an eye out for these potential problems to correct them before they become serious.