Myrtle Beach Car Repair Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a car or truck, you probably also have a lot of questions. Here we have collected the most common questions our Myrtle Beach auto repair customers have asked us over the years. Do you have a question? give us a call and we will take the time to answer your question and walk you through the solutions to get your car or truck running like new.

Turn Key Auto Repair is conveniently located in Myrtle Beach across from the airport and near Coastal Grande Mall at 1216 Port Drive
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577.

We also offer after hours drop-off and free WiFi in our comfortable waiting room.

You should have your car or truck serviced at regular intervals, typically at about every 5,000 miles or every six months. Regular service is the best way to keep your repair bills low since it will let your mechanic catch minor issues before they become major problems.

You can find out when you need regular service by:

  • Consult your owners manual for regular service as well as larger service appointments such as your 30,000, 60,000, 90,000, and other scheduled maintenance.
  • Most newer vehicles have internal calendar and alerts that will give you a reminder on your dash or infotainment system. These are a great way to ensure you get in for your service on time.
  • If you usually have your service done by us at Turn Key Auto Repair you’ll have a sticker in your window with recommended return date and milage.
  • Lastly, if you notice anything odd in terms of noise or handling it is good to get into the shop.

We like to rotate tires every 6,000 to 10,000 miles to ensure even wear and maximize the life of your tires.

Why do you need to rotate your car or truck tires? Is it really necessary? Absolutely, rotating your tires is a must if you want to get anything close to the full life out of your tires. This is primarily due to your front tires being put under additional stress on both the sidewalls and tread due to turning & supporting the entire front of the car.

Why should you rotate tires every 6,000 to 10,000 miles?

  • Extends your tire life
  • Ensures even wear
  • Maintains your tire warranty
  • cheap and easy
  • part of our regular maintenance at Turn Key Auto Repair.

At Turn Key, we check your tires at each and every service appointment. Stop by or call us to schedule your next visit.

When your car or truck starts burning oil you’ve got a serious problem and the sooner you fix your burning oil problem the cheaper it will be. It will not get better on its own. If you are smelling a foul odor and seeing a bluish color in your exhaust you’re likely burning oil. This both hurts your vehicle’s performance as well as can cause real damage.

Think about how an engine’s lubrication systems are designed to work. Oil circulates throughout your entire engine, ensuring that everything that moves, slides, or rotates is well lubricated. The only area that should not have oil in it is the fuel system, including your combustion chambers.

Typically when your car is burning oil it means somewhere there is failed seal that is allowing oil to enter the combustion chambers. This may be due to leaking around your piston rings or faulty valve seals. We usually see this in older, high mileage, vehicles. When this happens, it is time to get into the shop to have the problem addressed.

However, just because you find your oil level low, doesn’t mean you are actually burning oil, you may be leaking as well. The telltale sign of leaking is that nasty stain or drips on your driveway where your car is parked. If this is the case you should also get into the shop as soon as possible to find the leak, fix, and ensure you never actually run out of oil.

Short answer is if you have at more than 2/32″ of tread on your tires and they are less than six years old you don’t need to replace your tires due to wear. This doesn’t account for tire damage, particularly to the side walls.

One easy way to determine if you have enough tread is the Penny Test. This is a simple way ensure you’ve got the minimum of 2/32″ of tread, which is recommended by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Take any penny and place it, with Lincoln’s head facing down, into your tire tread in several areas around the tire. if Lincoln’s head is covered or partially covered by the tread you’re in good shape. If you can see the top of his head, it’s time for a new set of tires.

The other test is the age test, which is also easy. Most tire manufacturers recommend replacing tires after 6 years of the date they were made… even if you have plenty of tread. You can find the date your tires were made on the sidewall. This will be a series of characters that start with DOT, followed by the plant code, tire size, manufacturer code, and finally a four digit week and year. This may look like “1518”, the 1st two characters “15” indicate the week of the year and the last two “18” indicate the year. In this example the tire was made in April 2018 (15th week of the year is in April). if your date is greater than six years ago, it’s time to do some tire shopping.

Still not sure if you need your tires replaced, or looking to buy tires. Stop by Turn Key Auto Repair and we can give you the guaranteed best price on a new set of tires for your car or truck.

Looking for more information on how to keep your tires on the road, check out this article with the tips and tricks to get the best milage where the rubber meets the road!

The mysterious “check engine” light can be a dreaded reminder that not everything is right with your car or truck. Often times you won’t even feel a difference in drive quality or performance, however one of the many sensors in your vehicle is asking (nicely for now) for you to do some investigation. The issue could be something as simple as a loose gas cap to something much more serious. Regardless of the cause, you should make an appointment with us to have it checked out and give you your options (though we’d suggest you check that gas cap first).

For more on why your check engine light is on, read our full article to help you troubleshoot and fix that annoying check engine light.

Your engine compartment can be a pretty harsh environment with large temperature swings, dirt and grime, and chemicals that can cause wear. Your vehicle’s belts and hoses are exposed to this every day and over time can become brittle, cracked, and dry rotted. When this happens, your car will leave you stranded. That’s why we at Turn Key Automotive always complete a thorough inspection of your belts, hoses, and all other critical components every time you have your oil changed. When we do see an issue, we’ll show you exactly what needs to be replaced and let you make the call. Best news, you’ll never be left stranded with a broken belt or ruptured hose.

The short answer if your car or truck begins to overheat is to pull over as soon as it is safe to do so and call for assistance. Overheating can cause serious damage to your engine and cost thousands in repair bills.

The longer answer, once you are pulled over and safe, is why did your car overheat. The reasons for your car overheating can be numerous and range from low coolant levels, clogged air filters, or malfunctioning thermostats. A mechanic can help you troubleshoot these and get you fixed up.

In the hot Myrtle Beach summers it is not uncommon to be stuck in traffic where the road is hot, your A/C is working overtime, and there is very little airflow over your radiator and under your hood. For tips on keeping your car running in the hot summers, check out our article here.

A squeak here or there is not usually something to be concerned about. However if you continually hear squeaking when you depress the break odds are your brake pads are are low and need replaced before rotors are damaged.

Not only can worn out break pads damage your rotors, they can be incredibly dangerous and increase your car or truck’s stopping distance. If you think it’s time for new breaks stop in for a visit and we can help walk you through the next steps. The good news is break jobs don’t have to be expensive and we can get you in and out in no time. Learn more about our break service here.

The short answer is a typical battery will last four about four years, though that can vary wildly based on your environment and original quality of the battery. That means the best way to ensure you have a good battery is to have it tested regularly, such as when you come in for your regular oil changes.

Most newer cars will tell you when they need a tune up with that friendly maintenance light. This alert is based on your owners manuals and anticipated lifetime of your vehicle’s fluids. However you may also pick up on a few clues such as reduced gas milage and sluggish performance.

Most newer cars recommend replacing spark plugs every 100,000 miles. However older cars will vary widely in terms of recommended replacement, which is related to the type of spark plugs installed. Standard plugs may only get 15,000 miles, while platinum tipped plugs can easily reach 30,000. Beginning in the 2010’s we have seen the wide adoption of iridium plugs that work great right up to 100,000 miles. If you’re not sure what types of plugs you have, stop by the shop and we can help identify your spark plugs and recommend if and when they should be changed.

Preventative maintenance on your car or truck doesn’t have to be complicated, and luckily your car’s manual will guide you through exactly what you need to do to keep on you on the road.

However, there are a few key things you will want to keep an eye on to make sure you don’t have any emergencies on the road.

  • Check your windshield wipers for wear and replace as needed
  • Replacing air filters is easy and will absolutely improve performance
  • Change your engine oil change every 3,000 or as required for your vehicle
  • Make sure your battery is in good shape
  • Rotate your tires
  • Replace your cabin air filter

Absolutely, Turn Key Auto Repair is 100% authorized to service your vehicle and maintain your warranty. Our team of ASE Certified and ensured mechanics know the proper maintenance schedules and can make the same repairs that you would get at the dealership, just at a much better cost!

How often you change your oil will largely depend on your specific vehicle and you should check your car or truck’s manual for the exact timing. However it is a good rule of thumb to change your oil every 3,000 – 5,000 miles or every six months. If your vehicle is using synthetic oil your oil change schedule will be different, typically every 6,000 miles.

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Have a car repair question we haven’t answered? Let us know and we’ll follow up with you right away and post an answer here for everyone!