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Checking Your Car Battery: Is it Time for Replacement?

At Hixson Mazda of Alexandria we know how frustrating it can be to wake up to a dead car battery. In most cases you can just revive the battery with a pair of jumper cables, but if your battery has exhausted its life you'll need a replacement.

Testing a battery requires a tool called a voltmeter. The red test lead of the voltmeter attaches to your battery's positive post. The black, or negative, lead goes to the battery's negative post. A good battery will read 12.4 volts or more. Anything under 12 volts could indicate that…

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Tips for Maintaining Your Car's Battery

Your battery is what gives your Mazda the power to start by supplying power to the car's starter. Correctly maintaining your battery will significantly prolong its life and keep you out of inconvenient situations. Having said that, it's not always in your control when your car decides to have a failed battery.

Do you think you need a new battery? When your car doesn't start, it may mean that it's time to buy a new battery or at least service it.  

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Drive Confidently After Servicing an Inefficient Steering System

If you operate a vehicle that oversteers or understeers around curves, you could drive off the highway. This guide covers general ways understeering and oversteering causes problems during steep corning situations.

When understeering impacts a vehicle, the process of drifting along a curve will require strategic timing. Understeering makes cornering complicated by increasing the time that it takes to complete a turn. For example, you'll have to rotate a steering wheel a lot in order to drift around a simple curve on the road. 

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The Secrets of How to Avoid Hydroplaning

Your vehicle will begin to hydroplane on the road when the tires on your vehicle can not scatter rain fast enough to maintain enough contact of the tires to the road. Here are a few tips to driving safely on wet roads.

As the surface of the roads become wet, learn to increase the driving distance between you and the car ahead. This will allow you enough time to come to a stop without having to hard brake and risk skidding off the road. Turn off the cruise control feature in the rain, and make an effort to avoid driving…

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A Faulty Vehicle Exhaust System Can be Hazardous

We've all heard the stories of people having serious health issues directly related to experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning while sitting in a running vehicle. This gas and others can accumulate in your vehicle when the exhaust system isn't functioning correctly, and these gases can be especially dangerous because many of these gases are odorless.

The exhaust system in your vehicle is designed to pass noxious fumes from the engine safely through the system and out through the tail pipe. 

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How to Avoid Hydroplaning Your Vehicle

Every vehicle owner needs to be aware of what to do if the road conditions are hazardous due to excessive water on the road surface. The vehicle may hydroplane, which can happen if the water builds up under the tire and prevents the tire from making full contact with the road. If the tires can't maintain contact, the vehicle can begin to glide across the surface.

The first thing to do to prevent hydroplaning your vehicle is to slow down gradually if you see a large amount of water on the road ahead of you. Drive around 10 miles…

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Common Causes for Your Engine to Overheat

The reasons for the car engine to be overheating range from the simple to the costly. Here are a few popular reasons the engine may be overheating.

If the thermostat has failed, it will not be able to regulate the temperature in the engine block and will allow the system to quickly overheat. Blown radiator hoses disrupt the flow of coolant, so check the upper and lower hoses to be sure they are in tact and the connections are secure. 

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Monitor Tire Pressure to Avoid Costly Repairs

While you're driving, you don't want to see any lights on your dashboard come on because they usually indicate a problem with the vehicle. One such light is for the tire pressure. There are a few reasons as to why this light comes on, some that don't mean a problem that is severe.

If your air pressure is low because the temperature changes drastically, then the tire pressure light could come on until you put more air in the tires. 

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Let Your Suspension Take on the Blows: Get it Serviced Today

When you drive off-road or hit a pothole, you can feel your car drop down and may even feel a bit jarred by it. This hit would be far worse if it weren't for your vehicle's suspension. That is why we here at Hixson Mazda of Alexandria want to teach you all about it.

Your suspension is designed as a shock absorber for when your car suddenly drops or hits some sort of small obstacle on the road. Without it, you would feel every little bump in the road.  

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