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Tips for Spotting Problems with Your Car

Tips for Spotting Problems with Your Car

We often talk about how important it is to fix potential car problems rather than letting them fester and become major issues later. At Milex Complete Auto Care we want to help educate our customers about the proper care for their vehicle.  Nobody likes having to spend $1,000 on car repairs when if they had just come in two months earlier after the car first started acting strange, that same bill might have been $100 or less. Unfortunately, if there is a minor problem with a car and you ignore it, it doesn’t fix itself or remain minor. It usually gets worse. It obviously isn’t feasible for anyone to get their car examined by a mechanic every day, and it isn’t necessary. You may or may not know much about cars, but if you know what to look and listen for, you can prevent a lot of potential problems. Mostly, all you need to do is look and listen for anything strange and unusual that your car seems to be doing. Here ... read more

Don’t Warm Up Your Car Before Driving – and Other Things to Avoid in the Winter

Don’t Warm Up Your Car Before Driving – and Other Things to Avoid in the Winter

It is a common practice in winter and maybe you’ve done several times. There is snow covering your car and ice has settled over your windshield. And it is very cold. So, you trudge outside, start up your car and go back in your house and wait for the car to defrost. Contrary to popular opinion, that isn’t what you should be doing. In fact, there are several mistakes people make with their cars during the winter. Here are a few. Letting your car idle while it warms up. Several minutes isn’t going to kill your car, obviously, but letting it run while you finish breakfast inside is can be bad for your engine – unless your model is one that was built before 1995. Most cars built before 1995 had a carburetor, which combines air and fuel. With those cars, it was a good idea to let the car warm up for a while, as it helped your odds of the engine running properly once you started driving. But when car dealers began making engines with a fuel injectio ... read more

How to Prepare Your Car for Winter

How to Prepare Your Car for Winter

Winter is now here, which can be an enemy for cars across many parts of the country.  Cold temperatures, snow, sleet and ice can cause problems on how a car operates and drives on the road. Not having your car prepared for the winter can be potentially harmful to you, as well as others on the road.  So if your car isn’t winterized yet, it’s time to get your car prepared. Think about your battery. Freezing temperatures can reduce a battery’s power by up to 50 percent – and during the winter, when you have the heat on, the defroster going and maybe the windshield wipers, you’ll want your car to be operating as well as possible. You’ll also want to keep track of your battery’s age, so that you don’t wind up stuck somewhere in the cold.  Car batteries often last three to five years. Monitor your fluids. You probably know that keeping your antifreeze and coolant mix at the appropriate levels ... read more

Growing Your Business with Multiple Franchise Brands and Locations

Growing Your Business with Multiple Franchise Brands and Locations

Some people think that if you’re a franchise owner, that’s it. You own one franchise, and you’re almost a glorified employee who works for the franchisor. You aren’t really a business owner. You can never grow your business. You just have one stand-alone store in the franchise network, and that’s it. But that simply isn’t the case, as you may already know. Some franchise owners end up running businesses that operate and manage several different franchises. You could own a corporation that has five gas stations in a region, six restaurants and three clothing stores. No, it wouldn’t happen overnight, but the point is that some people do take that approach. Those people are often called master franchisees or area developers, and obviously, it takes a long time to get to that stage in one’s career, if you go that route. But the point is, being a franchise owner never means that you can’t grow and expand your business – and we tak ... read more

Your Check Engine Light is Talking To You. Are You Listening?

Your Check Engine Light is Talking To You. Are You Listening?

You would think that most drivers, if a check engine light came on, would take their car into be serviced – right away. Because it says check engine. But as you know, if you’ve been driving awhile and owned a few cars in your lifetime, that doesn’t always happen. People are busy. Sometimes money is tight. And if the car is still driving and seems okay, it’s easy to justify not taking your vehicle in. And the more days, weeks or even months that go by, the easier it becomes to rationalize. “The car is running fine,” you may be thinking, “and I have this money in the bank, and I don’t want to complicate my life with a big car repair bill. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” But the problem with that thinking is -- it probably is broken! So, yes, fix it. And taking your car in now may save you from a far, far bigger car repair bill in the future. At Milex Complete Auto Care ... read more

Moran Franchisee of the Year – Milex Complete Auto Care Albert & Serina Daniel

Moran Franchisee of the Year – Milex Complete Auto Care Albert & Serina Daniel

Albert and Serina Daniel have a blueprint for success for the two franchises they own in Western Maryland.  The couple operates a Milex Complete Auto Care shop in Frederick and a Milex/Alta Mere co-branded store in nearby Boonsboro.  That blueprint has led to a fourth time winning the Milex Franchisee of the Year Award. As Albert was off in the garage working on a customer’s car, we caught up with Serina to discuss some of the secrets to their success.  If you’re looking to replicate the achievements that Serina and Albert Daniel have experienced, you may want to include the following strategies in your operations manual. Keep your employees happy. Beyond simply being the right thing to do, you know the saying – happy employees, happy customers. Plus, keep your employees happy, and they’re likely to stay, and then they’re likely to become experienced staff who keep your business running better than ever. Serina said that ... read more

Four Bad Car Habits to Break

Four Bad Car Habits to Break

We all have bad habits, and some of them are worse than others. And sometimes our bad habits can really hurt us, literally and financially. We see that sometimes at Milex Complete Auto Care. That’s why we thought we’d spotlight some bad car habits that a lot of people do – that can sometimes cause you to bring their car in to be looked at, far more than they had planned. What sort of bad habits are we talking about? Well, see if you ever do any of these. You ignore a potentially troubling sound coming from your car. Maybe it’s the brakes. A screeching sound. Perhaps it’s a banging sound. None of those sounds are good, but maybe you downplay their significance if your car is still running without a problem. If you’re hearing screeching when you’re braking, you probably need brake pads, and if you’re not careful, and the screeching continues, you may need to replace the brak ... read more

Buying a Used Car? Six Things to Look at First

Buying a Used Car? Six Things to Look at First

If you’ve ever put off an oil change, a tune-up or getting your brake pads replaced, you may have well thought, “Well, what’s the big deal, really?” Maybe it isn’t a big deal, depending on how long you have put off your car maintenance. But if you’ve ever bought a used car, what’s the first – beyond the price – that you find yourself wondering about? Boy, I hope the person who owned this car before me took good care of it… That’s something to keep in mind, the next time you ask yourself, “Is it really a big deal that I’m putting off getting my tires rotated and that I’m going to hold off on the oil change I’ve been putting off for a while now?” Yeah, it kind of is. It’s a big deal for your car, and you’ll likely be able to sell or trade in your car someday, if it is well maintained – rather than have to someday drive it, or have it towed, into a salvage yard. Are you ... read more

Five Things to Teach Your Teen About Car Maintenance

Five Things to Teach Your Teen About Car Maintenance

When you are teaching a teenager to drive, you’re naturally focused on some of the most important things about being behind the wheel. Like, maybe you’re constantly shouting, “The brake is on the left. The LEFT!” But somewhere in the middle of showing your teenager how to drive and handing them the car keys to motor off to who knows where on their own (unless you have a tracking device on their phone), you really should show your teenager how to take care of a car – especially if they have their own wheels. You don’t want to someday pick up your kid, waiting for you on the side of the road, and learn that he’s never had the oil changed. So, with that in mind, here a few things you might want to remind your teenager to do when taking care of a car. Get the oil changed. We’ll start with the easiest and most obvious thing first. You know it’s important. Your teenager probably knows, too, but if you never discuss get ... read more

Happy Brake Safety Awareness Month!

Happy Brake Safety Awareness Month!

August is Brake Safety Awareness Month, which is a great time to make sure your car’s brakes are in proper working order.  Although the issue of if your brakes are functioning correctly sounds like an easy question, there are several things to monitor when looking and listening for signs that perhaps you need new brakes. Are you seeing or hearing the following? Thin brake pads. You can actually tell by looking at your brakes if you likely are going to have problems. All you need is a ruler. If your brake pads are less than a quarter of an inch thick, you should replace them. Low brake fluids. If the brake fluid level in the master cylinder is low, you may have a problem. Another red flag that you probably need new breaks is if there’s a copper content of 2000 ppm or greater in your brake fluid. Scraping or grinding noises when you press down on the brakes. If you hear this, it’s time to get brake pads as soon as possible. If you don’t, you could do enou ... read more

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