COVID-19 UPDATEWe are still open! Steve's Imports has made some adjustments due to COVID-19 to protect our employees and you, our customers.
All normally face to face interactions will be via the phone to encourage social distancing, due to this we are accepting card payments via phone amongst several other measures.
Click here to learn more about our changes in policy, for everyones protection
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Staying at Home Due to COVID-19?

It’s easy to forget about vehicle maintenance if you’re not, well… using your vehicle. However, it’s really important to take care of your car’s regular maintenance schedule even if you’re not driving very often. While you’re working from home, keep a look out for any of these signs that your vehicle needs maintenance or repair. If you have any questions, give us a call at Steve’s Imports, and we can schedule an inspection appointment for you!

7 Signs Your Car Needs Maintenance

The following symptoms are an indication that it’s time to bring your car into an auto repair shop for maintenance or repair. No one wants a surprise car issue, so staying on top of maintenance and noticing problems before they become expensive repairs is critical.

1. Warning Lights

One of the clearest indicators that it’s time for vehicle maintenance is a warning light on the dashboard. If one of the warning lights is illuminated on your dashboard, it’s time to bring it into Steve’s Imports to make sure that you don’t have any issues with your engine or any other of your vehicle’s symptoms. Sometimes the first symptom of anything being wrong with your car is a warning light, so make sure to check it out sooner rather than later to avoid costly repairs.

2. Sensitive or Non-Responsive Brakes

signs you need car maintenance portland oregon

If you notice any of these symptoms with your vehicle, it’s time to call Steve’s Imports to schedule an inspection!

Braking technology is one of the most rapidly evolving aspects of automotive innovation. Brakes and braking systems get more advanced every year. If you have anti-lock braking, an automatic braking system, or a collision avoidance system, it’s critical to pay close attention to how your brakes function.

When you apply your brakes, you should feel a quick and smooth response. However, if you feel resistance, hear strange noises, or if the brakes are unusually sensitive, it might be time to have your brakes serviced. Every braking system includes parts such as brake pads, brake fluid, and disks that wear over time. If your brakes are overly sensitive or not as responsive as they should be, call us here at Steve’s Imports to have an ASE-certified technician inspect your brakes.

3. Bad Vibrations

Make sure you watch and listen for strange vibrations and shudders. While it’s normal for your car to vibrate some while on the road, excessive vibration can be due to a loose piece of plastic or worn tires. However, the issue could also be in a weak joint or a loose bearing. A vibrating vehicle can be difficult to diagnose, so it’s best to have one of the technicians at Steve’s Imports take a look and diagnose the issue for you.

4. Strange Noises

Did you start up your car for the first time since quarantine and hear a bad sound? Strange sounds are one of the strongest symptoms of a vehicle in need of maintenance or repair. Certain noises indicate very specific problems. For example, if you hear a high-pitched squealing sound when you start up your car, a belt could be worn or loose. If you hear squealing noises while you’re driving, it’s possible that your vehicle is low on power steering fluid. A squeal while driving can also mean that your tires need rebalancing. You also may hear a strange sound when applying the brakes, indicating it’s time for a brake service. Knocking noises can indicate issues with your engine. A strange sound does not always mean a costly repair, but it’s best to take your vehicle in for an inspection if you notice new sounds while operating your car.

5. Frequent Stalling

Another indication that you need car maintenance or repair is frequent stalling of your vehicle. While it seems like a no-brainer to many people, there are plenty of motorists that just fight through sudden stalling every day on their commmute! However, sudden stalling means that you need a trip to an auto repair shop. The issues can range in causes from a faulty spark plug to a clogged fuel filter. Call and schedule an appointment at Steve’s Imports right away for both your and other motorists’ safety!

6. Excessive or Discolored Emissions

While it’s normal to notice white smoke on cold mornings due to water vapor in the exhaust sytem, excessive emissions or discolored emissions may mean you have another issue. If you notice excessive clouds in your rearview mirror, you may have an oil leak or a blockage somewhere.

A breach in your exhaust system isn’t something you can ignore. A buildup of carbon in your vehicle’s systems can lead to other problems. Smoke from under the hood could mean you have an issue with your radiator but there are multiple problems that can lead to excessive emissions. If you notice black residue on your bumper, it’s definitely time for a visit to Steve’s Imports in Portland!

7. Grinding Gears

A vehicle’s transmission undergoes wear and tear every time you use your vehicle. Eventually, the transmission will need attention. Parts may need replacement or you may need to replenish your transmission fluid. The first sign of transmission trouble should have you calling us here at Steve’s Imports immediately. You don’t want to ignore a transmission problem. If you catch a transmission issue early, it’s likely you’ll avoid much more extensive and expensive repairs. Call us today to book an appointment!

How Can Steve’s Imports Help?

At Steve’s Imports we strongly believe ‘It’s not just a car, It’s a relationship.’ We understand that your car isn’t just a machine made to go from point A to point B. Your car is unique, because it’s part of your life’s memories. Over 42 years of hard work, the family here at Steve’s Imports has built this business into a complete service and repair facility. If you notice any of the above issues with your vehicle, call us today to schedule an inspection!