Engine Performance, Diagnostics and Repairs

The most current diagnostic equipment

Engine performance, gas mileage, drivability issues and “check engine” lights can be some of the most difficult, complicated issues to diagnose and resolve.  Astro has the most current diagnostic equipment and information available.  We have three different scanners, a five gas exhaust analyzer, a digital scope and a sophisticated smoke machine to diagnose vacuum and evaporative system leaks.  Astro will perform a computer scan and other necessary tests to give us the ability to properly diagnose your drivability problem and estimate the correct repairs the first time.

When the “check engine” or “service engine soon” light comes on, it is a message from your vehicle’s computer to have the operation of your engine checked by a professionally trained technician.  One or more trouble codes have been stored in the vehicle’s computer.  These codes usually have to do with the engine performance, typically an engine misfire or rich or lean fuel condition causing the engine to lose power or use excessive amounts of gas.  The technicians at Astro Automotive will be able to extract these codes and then through a series of tests determine what repair or component replacement will correct the problem and get you back on the road with an engine that is running efficiently at peak performance.

Engine Repair

Astro is fully equipped to handle all heavy line engine repair including oil leaks, cooling system leaks, gasket replacement, water pumps, timing belt replacement and other mechanical repairs.

Oil leaks are common on most vehicles after 60,000 miles.  Typically, oil leaks are caused by a valve cover gasket failure or oil cooler lines where the braided hoses have deteriorated at the connectors.  These leaks are caused by the constant change of temperature in the engine operation which creates the wear and tear on the parts.  Most of these oil leaks are repaired in one day.  Sometimes an engine will get so covered with oil that we will need to steam clean the engine first before we are able to find the location of the leak.  Our service advisor will let you know what procedure your vehicle will need after our inspection.

Another common cause of engine leaks is the intake manifold gasket.  An intake manifold gasket failure can cause a coolant and/or an oil leak.  This repair requires the removal of the intake manifold and can be performed in one day.

Puddles of coolant under the engine compartment, usually occurring after the vehicle has been parked for an hour often indicates a bad water pump.  This leak usually occurs as the engine is cooling down.

Complete engine failures are rare in today’s vehicles, but unfortunately it does happen sometimes.  When it happens, we consider the total cost of the engine repair or replacement versus the value and potential life of the vehicle involved.  Working with the customer, we will provide all elements of the repair cost and our opinion as to the value of the repair to allow the customer to make the right decision going forward.

It is hard to tell if there are any issues with the timing belt.  There usually aren't any symptoms that a timing belt is going to fail. There may be some small signs, like a ticking noise that might come from the engine. The symptoms are not easy to hear.

Often, a timing belt will simply break with no warning. It's for this reason that it's important to get your timing belt replaced when your owner's manual recommends. Doing otherwise will expose you to a potential major repair bill.

Changing the timing belt on a vehicle is a long and labor-intensive process. This takes hours of labor, and requires exceptional skill. Because of this, timing belt replacements tend to be one of the more expensive services your car will need. It's cheaper than rebuilding your engine.