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What Do Motor Oil Viscosity Ratings Mean?

When the viscosity is used in reference to motor oil, it simply means how thick it is. It’s important to check your vehicle’s specifications before choosing oil. They will guide you on the appropriate viscosity and temperature for your engine.

When you read a multi-grade bottle of oil, you’ll see a smaller number, followed by a W, and a larger number. In a 20W50 oil, for example, the first number, 20, indicates the highest viscosity, or thickest, the oil will be in cold conditions. The W means winter. The 50 here, represents the thickest it will be…

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Keep Your Vehicle Stocked with Salt or Sand This Winter

One of the best things you can do to help make sure you have a minimal chance of slipping and falling on the ice this winter is to keep some sodium chloride rock salt and a bag of sand on hand this winter. If you keep a bag of each of these in the trunk of your car, the weight will help give a bit more traction on the rear end.

If you ever get stuck in a ditch, the salt and sand together will melt away the ice and leave behind a wet and gritty surface for your tires…

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Have Your Differential Checked Up at Bull Valley Ford

Getting the power that your engine generates translated into forward motion is a complex process involving a lot of gears. One of the most important components to this is your differential.

Your differential is essentially a gearbox that resides in the center of your axle. The power that your engine generates is sent to the transmission which is where your gearing is done. That powers the driveline that runs down the length of your vehicle. This rotates and powers your differential. As the differential turns, it sends power to the wheels so that they turn.

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Do You Keep Your Belts or Hoses in Mind?

There are many smaller components that play important roles in the function of your vehicle. These include items, such as belts and hoses. Just as larger vehicle parts, like the axle or transmission, require maintenance, the different belts and hoses that are a part of your vehicle need to routinely check and replaced if need be.

There are a number of hoses and belts working in your vehicle. The serpentine belt's role, for example, is to move power from the crankshaft to various engine components. Likewise, hoses play an important part of in your vehicle's function by moving…

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Keep Your Tires in Good Shape for Long-Lasting Tread

Your tires tend to take a beating out there on the road. And since they are not the cheapest items to have to replace it only makes sense that you would want to get the longest life out them as you possibly can. The good news is that there are some things that you can do to help them last longer.

One of the most important things that you can do is to make sure that they are inflated to the proper PSI level at all times. If your tires are over or under inflated that will cause the tread…

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Bright and Clear Headlights Work to Keep You Safe

Headlight bulbs that are dim or completely burnt out pose a serious hazard on the roads as you travel in and around Woodstock, IL. Not only is your vehicle not clearly noticed by other drivers, but you also can't clearly see what's happening on the road ahead of you.

At Bull Valley Ford, our service department is ready to quickly and easily replace…

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What Do You Need to Know about Your Vehicle’s Battery?

You can't get going on the road without a battery since it provides power to the starter, ignition, and other essential electrical components in your vehicle.

If you want to be sure that you can depend on your battery, you can have it checked out by a professional. At Bull Valley Ford, we offer our customers a battery diagnostic service. We'll inspect it to make sure it can perform when it needs to, and we'll clean your terminals if they're dirty or corroded. This can prevent problems due to poor connections.

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Should You Consider Replacing Your Windshield Wipers?

Windshield wiper blades are a key part of your visibility and safety systems. The blades are made of rubber, and they attach to the metal and plastic arms. Those arms are connected to a motor that moves the arms back and forth so that the blades can clean your windshield.

After a few months of exposure to the sun, rubber becomes brittle. The blades break down, no longer cleaning the car's windshield. This problem results in reduced visibility in heavy rain or snow.

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What is a Timing Belt?

The timing belt works with the camshaft and crankshaft to open and close the valves at precise intervals. They function together through a gear-like structure that the teeth on the inside of the belt fit into. As the fuel and air enter the cylinders, the valves release the gases.

Belts replaced their heavier chain predecessors in the 1980s. They provide better fuel efficiency but require routine replacement according to your vehicle’s specifications. Typically, a belt should be changed between 60,000 and 100,000 miles. If the belt breaks while in operation, the valves may become stuck...

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What Does Brake Fluid Do?

Hydraulic fluid, also called brake fluid, is pushed through the brake lines when you depress the brake pedal. It works as a way to keep the temperature steady during braking and as a lubricant for the brake system.

The fluid is pushed through the lines as you press on the brake pedal, and it heads to the brake cylinder. The cylinder compresses a piston that then forces the brake pad and disc to engage. It’s the friction of these two parts coming together that actually stops your vehicle. While braking, extremely high heat is produced, and the fluid is…

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