Archive for February, 2013

What Little Rock Automotive Service Consumers Should Know

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013

There are some things Conway, Arkansas consumers should know about Little Rock automotive service and repair. First and foremost, Parkway Automotive cares about you and your family’s safety. And we really appreciate your business. Parkway Automotive in Little Rock wants to build a trusting relationship that becomes the foundation for a mutually beneficial experience for years to come.

Building on that foundation, there are some things that would help you understand the auto service and repair business better. First, it can be really hard to fix cars. The days of shade tree mechanics are long gone. The majority of automotive systems are computerized. It takes a lot of training and very expensive equipment to diagnose and repair modern vehicles. The technicians that work for Parkway Automotive need extensive computer training – not just how to run the diagnostic systems, but also searching for the right parts, networking with other technicians to help them with a difficult problem and pulling together a job order that makes sure that each step of the process is addressed.

The threshold for getting started as a technician gets higher all the time and there is a huge commitment to on-going training every year. This training takes time and money. It contributes to business overhead. The average Cabot, Arkansas or Bryant, Arkansas driver may not realize the business and environmental regulations Parkway Automotive must comply with. Of course that costs money too. Like any business, overhead is a big factor.

When you go into a Conway, Arkansas restaurant you don’t value the meal by what the food would cost at the grocery store. The restaurant has rent, wages, insurance, taxes, utilities, professional fees, equipment, supplies – you get the picture. The restaurant has to charge enough to not only pay for the ingredients, but for all these other things as well while making enough profit to remain in business. If you value the meal and are satisfied with your dining experience, you’ll come back and tell your friends.

It’s the same for Parkway Automotive. The value of its service is not the cost of the parts they replace, but in your satisfaction with the results. If they deliver a good product at a fair price, Little Rock customers are happy to see them succeed as a Arkansas automotive business.

Contact Parkway Automotive to learn more about our extensive auto service training.
You can find us at:
708 Kirk Road
Little Rock, Arkansas 72223
Or call us at 501-821-6111

Your Little Rock service center loves to see its customers whenever they come in, but they would much rather see them three or four times a year for routine maintenance than once a year on a tow truck. They want to work together with you to avoid breakdowns. Tell your Conway, Arkansas area friends and family to go in for their scheduled maintenance too. That lowers the service center’s marketing costs and helps keep its labor rates down. That’s good for everyone.

Parkway Automotive appreciates this great review of automotive service from AutoNetTV.

Power Steering Service At Parkway Automotive In Little Rock

Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

Many Little Rock drivers have been hearing about technological advances in power steering, specifically, electric power steering. Some very high-end cars have been featuring electric power steering for a few years now. An electric motor directly provides the power assist to make steering easier. Undoubtedly we’ll see much more of this in Little Rock as full electric cars and electric hybrids become more common.

The vast majority of cars and trucks serviced at Parkway Automotive in Little Rock use a hydraulic power boost system. With hydraulics, fluid is pressurized by a pump which actuates a hydraulic cylinder to reduce steering effort. Some of these pumps are powered by an electric motor. Most pumps are powered by the serpentine belt driven by the engine.

Power Steering Service At Parkway Automotive In Little RockPower steering fluid has the necessary hydraulic properties and the ability to lubricate the internal parts. The power steering fluid also protects truck components from rust and corrosion.

Little Rock car owners should be aware that manufacturers recommend that the fluid be replaced on schedule.
At Parkway Automotive, the old fluid is drained and the system cleaned thoroughly. Fresh fluid is then installed.

Unfortunately, many Little Rock drivers don’t realize how critical it is to service their power steering, and some may not even know that it’s necessary in the first place. A neglected power steering system can develop leaks that will shorten the life of the pump.

Little Rock drivers should be aware of warnings that indicate possible power steering problems: the need to constantly add power steering fluid, a loud whining from the pump, erratic power assist or high steering effort. If you’re experiencing any of these problems, have your power steering checked out at Parkway Automotive in Little Rock.

In addition to the pump and hydraulic system, there are mechanical parts in the steering system. The rods, arms, joints and knuckles that actually turn the wheels can become worn or damaged. A standard alignment service at Little Rock includes an inspection of steering components.

If you notice any play in the steering wheel, that the steering wheel is off center, or a noise coming from your front wheels, especially when turning, have your Parkway Automotive advisor do an inspection so the problem can be corrected. Waiting too long could cause uneven tire wear and may even lead to steering failure. Call Parkway Automotive today at 501-821-6111.

Parkway Automotive Often Asked About Premium vs. Regular Gas

Thursday, February 14th, 2013

People in Little Rock Arkansas often ask the question: “Will using premium gas make my car run better?” The answer is simple. But first, let’s talk about what exactly premium gasoline is.

Different grades of gasoline have different octane ratings. Regular gasoline has the lowest octane rating and premium the highest. Most gas stations around Little Rock Arkansas also carry a mid-grade that falls in between the two. The octane range for the different grades of gas varies by region due to altitude differences.

Engines require different octane ratings because of design differences. For example, turbocharged engines usually require premium gas.

There’s a sticker on your gas tank filler lid that tells you the minimum octane rating your manufacturer recommends.

For help identifying the type of gasoline your engine needs, come by our Little Rock Arkansas service center:
Parkway Automotive
708 Kirk Road
Little Rock, Arkansas 72223

Read your owner’s manual carefully to see if it’s acceptable to use lower grades. With some cars in Little Rock Arkansas it is; the engine control computer can adapt. You’ll lose some performance, but won’t do damage. With other engines, using a lower grade of fuel could result in serious damage; so you don’t want to save a couple of bucks at the pump only to pay it out a hundred fold at the repair shop.

Your car will run best on the grade of gasoline recommended by the manufacturer.

Today’s computer controlled vehicles are optimized to run well on the recommended grade of fuel. Using a higher grade than is recommended will not give you any additional performance or better fuel economy.

Regulations require detergents for all grades of gasoline, so your engine will have the same protection, regardless of the grade of fuel you use. If you do hear some knocking or pinging from your engine, take it seriously and get your truck into Parkway Automotive. It may be a sign that you need a tune-up or some other repair.

In times of high gas prices, we’re all conscious of making our fuel dollar go further as we drive around Little Rock Arkansas. Be sure to use the right gas for your car. Keep your tires properly inflated and your vehicle well maintained and you will get the best fuel economy possible.

Go Straight: Wheel Alignment For Little Rock Automobiles

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

You may have an alignment problem if your car drifts or pulls to one side, your steering wheel’s off center, you have uneven tire wear or your car doesn’t feel like it handles right as you drive down our local Little Rock Arkansas streets.

When all of a vehicle’s wheels are lined up exactly with each other, your wheels are in alignment. Running into potholes, smacking a curb or other objects around Little Rock, Arkansas are great ways to knock your car out of alignment. Then one or more of your wheels starts pulling in a slightly different direction and the problems begin.

Driving for an extended time when your car is out of alignment causes your tires to wear unevenly and excessively. Sometimes the tire can be worn so badly that it will fail.

At the very least, you’ll have to replace your tires sooner. You could end up with premature wear to your suspension system, which can be really expensive. The front wheel alignment is adjustable on all vehicles, and the back wheels are also adjustable on some cars.

Now, let’s talk about some alignment basics. Wheels are adjustable for toe, caster and camber. The ideal alignment for your car was designed by its engineers.

So, what is involved in an alignment check at our Little Rock Arkansas auto dealership? First, there’s an inspection of the steering and suspension to see if anything is bent or broken. Tire condition will also be evaluated.

From there, the vehicle is put on an alignment rack and we take an initial alignment reading.

If all four wheels are adjustable, they are lined up perfectly parallel with the vehicle’s centerline. If the back wheels aren’t adjustable, the direction they push is determined and the front wheels are aligned to match.

Like most things, your manufacturer has suggested a mileage interval for having your alignment checked. But if you run into a curb, pothole or something else that’s given you a big jolt, pay attention to whether your vehicle is pulling to one side when you drive around the Conway, Arkansas area. It’s better to have your alignment checked before waiting to see if there is uneven tire tread wear – by then, the damage is done.

Getting your alignment checked when needed is a great way to extend the life of your tires and suspension parts. It also makes sure that your tire meets the road properly for maximum performance and safety.

Come see us at Parkway Automotive for more information about your tire alignment. We look forward to seeing you.