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Steve’s Auto Repair and Tire covering employees’ health care

In Community Involvement by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire is making health care more affordable for its employees.

On December 1, the Woodbridge-based automotive repair shop started paying 100 percent of the basic health care plan.

“Small businesses are finding it more difficult to attract and retain qualified employees. The rising cost of health care is contributing to the issue,” Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire Owner Scott Whitling said. “We thought, ‘What could we do to be more marketable in our industry and do something that would benefit the employees?’”

This is enabling an employee to purchase health insurance for his two children.

Employees of Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire also received more Paid Time Off (PTO) days that can be used if they’re sick or they need to care for family members.

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Are your vehicle’s headlights clear?

In Headlamps, Inspection, Safety by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

Traveling during late hours can be stressful and dangerous.

Addressing hazy headlights can improve safety and visibility.

Over time, a vehicle’s headlamps can grow foggy as their clear coat finish wears off and the headlight cover becomes pitted.

Steve’s Auto Repair and Tire in Woodbridge has the ability to restore them.

According to Steve’s Auto Repair and Tire Manager Jon Conner, changing a headlight cover can fix the issue. Some lights must be replaced entirely.

“You can make an appointment with us and we will evaluate the headlights on your car, truck or SUV and give you a recommendation if they can be restored or need to be replaced,” Conner said.

The headlamps don’t just impact a driver’s safety or ability to see at night.

They can also cause issues in an annual check up.

“During a state inspection, headlights are checked for alignment and for candle power — or how bright they are,” Conner said. “For example, the headlights might require an 8,000 candlepower rating to pass the inspection. If it gets to low, you can actually fail it.”

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Power steering issues can be caused by rusting

In Maintenance by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

Toyotas can be reliable vehicles that last for many years.

However, rust can build up on the components of various automobiles, including Toyota SUVs, forerunners, and Tundras.

This is especially true for those driven near the sea or in areas where large amounts of salt are used to treat the roads.

Individuals driving them may eventually notice that the power steering isn’t working correctly.

When checked, technicians may not find any issues with the power steering pump, the rack and pinion, and the power steering cooler.

“Upon further inspection, you can see that the intermediate steering shaft that contains a universal joint is rusted and is starting to seize up, which is making it feel that the power steering is going bad,” Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire Owner Scott Whitling said.

To assist with steering, he explained, the pump and rack and pinion must receive feedback from the steering wheel.

The cause of the problem can be incorrectly identified.

“It can easily be misdiagnosed and that’s why it’s important to go to your professional automotive repair facility with ACE certified technicians,” Whitling said.

Power Steering

Toyota steering shaft

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Tips for battling the sun in Northern Virginia

In Safety by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

The fight with the sun has begun for many drivers.

“This is the time of year, especially when you’re commuting to work and commuting home — depending on what time it is — where the sun is coming through the windshield,” Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire Owner Scott Whitling said.

Using a sun visor is one solution to the issue.

Some sun visors now come in two parts and can be used for a windshield and side window.

“If you’re not sure about your car, look at the owner’s manual, which most people don’t do,” Whitling said. “You’d be surprised what your sun visors actually do now.”

Drivers should also consider purchasing a pair of sunglasses and remove any ice on their windshield.

“If you haven’t defrosted your windshield, that just makes that problem worse,” Whitling said. “There are a lot of accidents because of this problem.”

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How drivers can address frost, prepare for winter months

In Fluids, Maintenance, Safety, Windshield Wipers by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

Drivers are discovering an unwelcome guest in the morning — ice on their vehicle’s windows and windshields.

A few techniques can help speed up the defrosting process.

When preparing for the commute, it’s important to spend a few minutes getting rid of the frost.

“You want to make sure that your windows aren’t frosted up on the side, so you can see that car coming or that kid walking across the street,” Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire Owner Scott Whitling said.

Motorists should let their car run for 1 to 3 minutes before hitting the road.

“It allows heat to start to build up and, if you already have your defroster on, you can go ahead and start defrosting the windshield,” Whitling said.

Pointing outer vents to the side windows can help thaw any ice on them.

Whitling suggests drivers tests certain parts of their vehicle.

“It’s a good time to check your windshield washer fluid and make sure that it’s going to protect down to the correct temperature,” he said.

They should check their rear window defroster, as well.

Electricity runs through the lines on the window to melt frost that has accumulated.

“It can take anywhere between, depending on how powerful the rear defroster is, 1 minute to 5 minutes. So, give it a little bit of time, make sure that it works,” Whitling said. “If not, now’s a good time to get your vehicle in to get it checked out.”

Frost

Frost