Engine Repair

Regardless of the miles on the engine in your vehicle, Thompson Automotive has the professionally trained, ASE-certified mechanics needed to keep your car, truck, van, or SUV running smoothly. As engines age with normal wear and tear, their general upkeep requires more and more attention to keep costly repairs at bay. Our goal is to help you stay on top of any potential engine problems before they turn into critical failures. We provide engine repair services. If you’re dealing with engine issues, we’d be happy to take a look — visit our auto shop here in Littleton, and schedule an appointment today. You can also continue reading to learn more about our engine services.

Top-Rated Engine Specialists

Acura and Honda have very different manufacturer recommendations compared with Lexus and Toyota. Mitsubishi recommends engine procedures that vary widely from those recommended by Subaru, and so on. Because these manufacturer recommendations are so different from one another, you need a trusted resource with expertise in servicing and repairing engines from all of these manufacturers. Thompson Automotive is here for you when you need an engine specialist who knows what to look for in your specific engine.

Not only do we clearly communicate the necessary engine service or repair work to you before beginning work, we also offer a worry-free, 3-year/36,000-mile warranty for all services and repairs performed. That’s automotive expertise you can rely on!

One Stop for All Engine Services, Oil Changes, and Repairs

Modern automotive engines are very intricate systems composed of rods, bearings, gaskets, valves, and literally hundreds of other precision parts all of which need ongoing maintenance to ensure optimal functionality. For every part of your engine, there is a specific, manufacturer-recommended service procedure that our mechanic team can perform as necessary. Whether you’re hearing a strange noise or your check engine light has come on, we’d be happy to assess the issue at hand, and provide you with the repair you demand. Learn more about common engine issues that we encounter below.

Common Engine Issues

Bad Spark Plugs

Your spark plugs are responsible for creating an ignition, which causes your engine’s individual cylinders to fire. If you have dirty or damaged spark plugs, then your engine will misfire, which will greatly reduce the efficiency of the engine. And over time, a bad spark plug can wreak havoc on your engine, since the cylinders will be out of sync. Avoid premature wear and tear if you think that you have damaged or dirty spark plugs — let us clean or replace them! Keep an eye out for odd engine noises, poor gas mileage, and reduced vehicle performance or acceleration.

Radiator Issues

Your radiator should pump coolant throughout your engine in order to keep its components cool. If your system lacks sufficient coolant, if your fan isn’t operating, or if you have a clog in the radiator line, then your engine is liable to overheat. Keep an eye on the temperature gauge of your vehicle, and never run your engine when it’s overheating. The temperature of your engine should level off and remain fairly stable as it is running. If you have an overheating engine, or if your engine temperature fluctuates, check your coolant level or bring your vehicle into the shop. You may have a coolant leak, a cracked radiator, or a gunked up coolant line. Feel free to learn more about our radiator services.

Leaky Combustion Chamber Seals

Your combustion chamber (which houses the pistons that fire in your engine) should be under compression as air and fuel are pushed into the individual cylinders. However, your combustion chamber and the seals around the chamber are liable to leak. If you’re experiencing a leak, you’ll lose fuel and air that should otherwise create the small firings that drive your engine. With a small leak, you’ll notice poor engine performance and gas mileage. With a large leak, your engine may not work at all.

Oxygen Sensor Malfunction

Your vehicle’s oxygen sensor should accurately sense how much oxygen exists in the exhaust released from your engine. After sensing the oxygen in the exhaust, this information is relayed to the air intake, where the intake of air can be adjusted to adapt to the current engine usage. If your vehicle’s oxygen sensor isn’t working, it may not properly throttle the air intake, which is tasked with creating the proper air-to-fuel mixture for the firings at your engine’s cylinders. Your check engine light may come on if you have a faulty oxygen sensor, or you may see poor gas mileage if your oxygen sensor isn’t calibrated.

Old Oil

Engine has a service life, and it won’t perform as it should after a few months or a few thousand miles of use. Be wary that you should stick with the recommended oil change interval for your vehicle (read more about that in the section below). If you have old, dirty oil coursing through your engine, you could see higher temperatures (since there will be more friction throughout the engine), and your engine will endure faster wear and tear.

Faulty Oil Pump

Your oil pump cycles oil through the engine, which keeps the oil cooler while ensuring that all parts are properly lubricated. If you have a faulty oil pump, you could have oil that remains stagnant, which means your engine’s components can overheat and rub together. Be mindful that your oil pump can fail, which may trigger a check engine indicator. Proper oil pump operation is especially important in overhead engines with valve trains and cams that are far away from the pump.

Engine Knocking

If you’re hearing a knocking noise from your engine, it should be cause for concern. Knocking is an indication that your combustion chamber is building up too much pressure and/or heat, which can cause the pistons to slam out of position as combustions last longer than they should. If you have bad enough knocking, your engine could be severely damaged with broken pistons or rod bearings, cracked rings, or even a blown gasket. Bring your vehicle into a shop right away if you hear engine knocking.

Poor Fuel and Air System Performance

Balancing the air and fuel fed into the combustion chamber of your engine is a complex and delicate process. And unfortunately, components are liable to fail in your fuel and air systems, which can create a bad air-to-fuel mixture. If you have an engine that’s rich with too much gas, or lean with too little gas, then you may have any number of issues along the fuel line and throughout the air intake system. Feel free to learn more about your vehicle’s fuel and air systems.

Cracked Engine Block

Your engine has an exterior housing that is responsible for containing the explosions that operate the pistons within the block. If that housing cracks, your combustion chamber will no longer create adequate pressure to drive the pistons as it should. A cracked block is a major issue, and it may cause your vehicle to overheat, produce white smoke, or cease to operate altogether. You may also notice a coolant or oil leak.

Engine Component Failure

Your engine consists of a number of components which generate engine power and ultimately transfer that power to the transmission and on down the line to your wheels. Firing power starts in the combustion chamber where the cylinders, rings, and pistons all work in coordination to drive your engine. Your pistons also rely on rods, pins, and bearings as they fire. Any one of these components is liable to fail due to wear and tear or misuse. If you’re experiencing loud noises, high running temperatures, metal in the oil, white smoke exhaust, or complete engine failure, then you may have a failed engine component, which means that your engine is blown. Repairing or replacing an internal component means that we’ll have to tear your engine apart and rebuild it.

Recommended Maintenance Intervals

You can, and should, take preventative measures to mitigate the odds of blowing your engine. It’s always a good idea to get regular tune-ups and to have your vehicle inspected to ensure things are running smoothly. Be sure to keep up on your recommended maintenance intervals to ensure that your engine runs efficiently, with as little wear and tear as possible. We recommend the service intervals listed below.

To keep potential engine problems from happening in the first place, we highly recommend regularly scheduled oil changes using high-quality motor oil that is rated for the size and demands of your engine. For most vehicles, three months or 3,000 miles (whichever comes first) is a generally advisable interval for oil changes — and remember, the oil in your engine is being used even when your vehicle isn’t being driven (idling, neutral, etc.). When oil surpasses its service life in an engine, it begins to thicken, interfering with the normal functioning of engine parts with very tight mechanical tolerances.

If an engine is forced to run with old oil for too long, irreversible damage can occur, sometimes resulting in complete engine seizure or failure. Don’t let this happen to you — make sure you bring your vehicle to Thompson Automotive for regular oil changes and periodic inspections of key engine components.

As we mentioned, your radiator and its coolant should keep your engine from overheating. However, your radiator can get gunked up with residue and debris over time, which can hinder the flow of the antifreeze. Be sure to have your radiator flushed regularly to keep precious cooled fluid moving through your engine. Otherwise, your engine can quickly overheat, which places extra strain on the components, and can crack the engine block. We recommend that you have your radiator flushed every 40,000 to 60,000 miles, or as recommended in your vehicle’s owner’s manual. Feel free to learn more about our radiator fluid flushes.

Like the oil in your engine, your transmission fluid ensures that your transmission runs smoothly. Be sure to keep your transmission fluid fresh so that your engine doesn’t have to work overtime to transfer power to the transmission. We recommend that you have your transmission flushed every 30,000 miles, or as recommended in your vehicle’s owner’s manual. Feel free to learn more about our transmission fluid flushes.

Your fuel and air systems work in unison to introduce the right amounts of fuel and air to the cylinders. Without well-serviced systems, you could end up with an imbalance, which will reduce the efficiency and gas mileage of the vehicle and hinder its performance. Regular cleaning and maintenance for your fuel and air systems will improve the performance of your engine and mitigate unnecessary wear and tear. We recommend that you have your fuel and air systems serviced every 45,000 to 60,000 miles, depending on the age and usage of the vehicle. You can also check your vehicle’s owner’s manual for the manufacturer’s recommendation. Feel free to learn more about our fuel and air system maintenance services.

It depends. Your vehicle’s AC may pull more or less power depending on the make and model of your vehicle. In addition, that power loss will be more or less noticeable depending on the size of your engine. If, for example, you have a V8, you may not even notice a change in performance with the AC on. However, if you have a four-cylinder, the power loss may keep you from reaching 75 on the highway for an extra few thousand feet.

Early Detection Means Lower Costs


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  • Committed to Delivering Excellence
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Contact Littleton’s Engine Service and Repair Professionals

When it comes to keeping your engine running smoothly, don’t trust your vehicle to a service provider without a proven track record and certified trained technicians. The more high-quality care you give to your engine, the more miles of high performance it will give you in return. Get in touch with your local, Littleton-based mechanic today, and schedule an appointment for your engine!

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