Car Brakes Problems-Common causes for troublesome brakes on your car?

car brakes problems

This car came to us with a terrible brake grinding noise, caused by Worn out brakes Discs and pads ready to be replaced

Having your car brake’s in tip top condition is probably the most important part of your car, to look after and protects you from car brakes problems.

Regular servicing will ensure that your car will have minimal Car Brakes Problems. However things can go wrong in between servicing. Mainly due to the weather conditions or dirt and grit from the roads.

In my opinion though, the main reason for Car Brakes Problems is neglect?

By neglect I simply mean that drivers miss servicing their cars.

  • Things to spot if you are having Car Brakes Problems are as follows. The one that we often spot before the customer does is a soft or spongy brake pedal. We often notice this problem. When we are driving the car on the ramp. On some cars the pedal almost touches the floor pan. The usual cause of this is that the car has a fluid leak. Coming from either a brake pipe or brake cylinder. On occasional instances, then we find that water could have formed in the pipes. This is  due to the fluid overheating and the resulting evaporation turns into water.
  • Other common Car Brakes Problems can start with a squealing sound coming from the car when braking occurs. This is when the brake pads are worn down to the metal backing and the sound is created with the metal of the worn out pads touching the metal brake discs. If your brakes make this or any other
    car brake probems,New discs and pads fitted onto a Mazda

    New discs and pads fitted onto a Mazda

    sound then it is best to have your brakes checked by a reputable garage.

  • Car Brakes Problems

  • Other Car Brakes Problems can be diagnosed. When the driver feels the car pulling to one side. This can be other problems such as a brake calliper that could be seized up or just that your wheel alignment may be out and need adjusting. Once again this can be remedied by your garage and corrected by having a brake service.
  • Many Car Brakes Problems can be detected by grinding noises and even a bumping feeling when you put pressure on the brake pedal. This can also be solved by fitting a new set of brake pads. The bumping feeling is very often linked to a warped brake disc. This could only be remedied by a new set of discs and pads.

These are the most common problems that we see in a normal week at Pellon Tyre and Autocentre, in Halifax Yorkshire. If you service your car at regular intervals then these problems would be picked up before they manifest themselves as faults.

Eric Roberts

Manchester United Logo concept tyres from Apollo Tyres

Manchester United logo

Manchester United logo on the tyres sidewall.

As an Apollo tyres dealer here in Halifax, Yorkshire UK, I was pleasantly surprised to hear a few months ago that Apollo tyres would be using the Manchester United logo on the sidewall of a certain size of tyre.

Apollo tyres are tyre partners to Manchester United. For that reason , have come up with great idea of putting the Manchester United logo on the sidewall of one of their tyres. I presume this is to attract the 46 millions of Manchester United fans. These are from all over the world and not just here in the UK.

Group managing director of Manchester United Richard Arnold said, “Apollo Tyres is a leading player in the tyre industry and its rate of growth and development into new territories made it an attractive partner for the Club. With a combined fan base close to 46 million followers in the UK and India, we are confident in providing Apollo with a highly engaged audience, not only to promote its brand, but also to engage and communicate with our fans”.

For this reason, the first tyre to have the Manchester United logo on the sidewall is the 19565R15 91V Apollo Alnac S G tyres. I must admit that the first one we saw was on a customer’s car. This was brought to us for a service.  Up to then I had never heard of the tyre.

Manchester United logo

The impressive Apollo coach complete with Manchester United logo

I do however think it is a great idea. This has been possible to do by using modern tyre manufacturing methods. Naturally, most things can now be put onto a tyre sidewall at relatively short notice.

Apart from the Manchester United logo,

Of course, Apollo are backing local junior football clubs. For that reason, they will build “Go The Distance” all weather football pitches. Consequently, made from recycled tyres in local communities across the UK and India. With the first one situated at Old Trafford. Indeed my manageress Debbie Bastow. Has secured a promise from Apollo tyres to lay a recycled football pitch at her local junior club.  Tingley Athletic, in Morley near Leeds.

Eric Roberts

Motorhome Tyres-It is Very Important to fit the Correct Tyres?

This problem is nothing new. Back in the day, when vans were becoming more popular, we had a similar problem. People, who bought these small and medium vans, were unsure which type of tyres to use.

Vans used for small businesses could carry some real weight. They would load their van up with all sorts of equipment that were used to carry out their jobs with. Caravans were also becoming more popular but I will leave that for another article?

motorhome tyres

Adam removing a wheel to fit new Michelin motorhome tyres to this large camper van.

The popular van sizes in those days were from a 155×13 radial to a 185×14 radial. Each of these sizes was made as a van tyre or a car tyre. The van tyres were made with a heavier ply rating to enable the tyres to carry more (or the correct) weight.

Our customers would always go for a cheap car tyre option and did not worry about the consequences of having a tyre blowout because their van was overloaded. This also happened on caravans, overloaded caravans fitted with car tyres that had the incorrect load rating. With a little knowledge the owners of these vans started to fit the correct tyres for the job. Vans became faster and were able to carry heavier loads, so were fitted with low profile tyres and it became necessary for them to fit the correct tyres.

Enter the motorhome tyres?

The caravan people also had problems with fitting the wrong tyres. I would go straight to the motorhome problem, because it is a more current problem. Because of the massive increase in motorhome ownership then there will be more motorhome tyres sold.

This is something that is happening as I write this article. The thing is though, that the same problem as with the early van tyres? Drivers of these vehicles want to scrimp when it comes to buying the correct tyres for the job. In my opinion there is two options for motorhome tyres. The first is to fit a van tyre. The van tyre should be the same size, speed and load rating as the original tyre that is being replaced.

If everything is the same then you are within the law. Whatever you do, not try to revert to fitting a car tyre, of the same size, because the load rating will not be the same. Lower load ratings are what cause a blowout. This is one of the main reasons that you will see a caravan rolled over onto its side, or in a ditch.

motorhome tyres

Large motorhome ready to roll ?

As motorhomes became more popular, then some of the leading tyre manufacturers introduced specific motorhome tyres, for the camper motorhome owners. Michelin tyres, Continental tyres and Pirelli tyres all brought out a specific niche market camper/motorhome tyre.

When entering the camper tyre market. Tyre makers were looking at the strong tyre casing with a high load rating the same as a van tyre. Strong casings enable the tyre to carry much more weight. They can also cope with cornering and different terrains. After all you can see motorhomes anywhere. Not just on tarmac roads. This rigidity from a stronger sidewall.As a result, also prevents the motorhome tyres from swaying. We have all seen this when following an overloaded caravan.

It also very good advice, to drive within the speed limit, and also to avoid swerving.

My understanding is that the correct motorhome tyres are made with a different tyre compound than the regular van tyre, and this could be one of the reasons that the correct motorhome tyres a little more expensive. Certainly do not be tempted to fit regular car tyres, this has been asked of us a few times, by the

motorhome tyres

Michelin camper tyres ready to be fitted

owners of older motorhomes, but this is a no go area.

Here in Halifax at Pellon tyres, we find that Continental and Michelin are the two most popular brands of motorhome tyres that we fit and thoroughly recommend them for your camper van or motorhome.

I would recommend that you look at excellent advice about motorhome tyres from the tyre safety organisation that I fully support…

Tyre Safety-Millions of drivers ignore it?it is all our Responsibilities?

Tyre safety should involve checking your tyre pressures, perhaps every week.

As a tyre dealer for 40 years, the “tyre changing” trends of the British public have never really changed. It appears to me that we have always had the two camps of drivers to deal with. The first group of drivers just could not care less about their car and safety. The second group of drivers are the opposite and they do cars for their cars and the improved road safety that goes with it.

It is not just about “tyre safety”, but drivers should be more proactive with regular checks on other things such as keeping a regular check on the cars lights and the windscreen and windscreen wipers. Tyre safety should involve checking your tyre pressures, perhaps every week. You should also look out for any cuts or lumps as well as the tread depth.

The first group just want to keep their cars on the road without spending as little money as possible. As a garage owner they sometimes make me cringe?

tyre safe

This tyre was sold as a part worn and still had a nail on the inside which was wearing away at the side-wall. The people that sell these do not care a hoot about the drivers safety.

They are driving about sometimes in death traps, with little regard to other road users. This group of motorists are the ones who are most likely to spend as little as possible on cheap part worn tyres. The last thing on their minds will be tyre safety as long as it does not cost them much.

Tyre Safety

Fortunately for me, we do not see these drivers and cars very often. The only time we see these people is if we have a special offer on say MOT testing. These are the people who only spend the minimum on repairs or if their car fails the MOT test. The good guys will book their cars in for a service and a test?

We at Pellon Autocentre prefer to service our customer’s car first. This ensures that any possible MOT failure problems will be picked up before the car is tested. We believe that this is the best customer service, as we notify them about any problem that may cause the car to fail the test.

I am not sure on how we can educate the first group, who just can’t cars less about their cars safety. These are the motorists that are letting us all down. They should take better care of their cars, with more routine checks and servicing.

Tyre safety is paramount in all this, but you should see some of the tyres that we remove from our customers cars? Most of the cars are very nice cars, such as BMW’s and Mercedes, but the owners shun tyre safety and hang to their money as long as they can.

In some respects the law is to blame; drivers now get away with murder? With winter approaching just watch out for the number of cars with lights out. I call them “one eyed monsters ”driving with defective lights (even just a blown light bulb) is illegal, but the law is stretched due to government cut backs ,and so the law has better things to do and the bad guys get away with it.

Tyre safety is paramount with  attacking the problem

Tyresafe, the non for profit making safety group, recon that as many as 98% may be illegal when sold. In recent times Tyresafe have gone along to part worn tyre shops and purchased 50 part worn tyres. Out of the 50 tyres bought 98% of them were illegal and many were highly dangerous.

Tyre safety

With winter approaching it is a good time to check your tyres lights and wipers or better still have a service.

A recent tyre safety  tread depth survey. Thereby, carried out by the Tyresafe organisation. Revealed that Across Britain: 27.1% of replaced tyres were illegal (below1.6mm legal limit) ,66.1% of replaced tyres were illegal or borderline (2mm and under) This amounts to a staggering 10 million tyres that are dangerous and illegal.For that reason, will be putting British motorists at risk. Or one in four cars will have an illegal tyre on their vehicle, during the year.

Many of our customers are amongst what I call the good guys. They are tyre safety conscious and have regular car servicing carried out at least once a year. This ensures good brakes and lighting and usually results in a pass on the MOT test. I do however think that tyres should now be removed at 2mm. Not the legal 1.6mm, but this will only come with tyre safety education.

Tyresafe are constantly making a great effort. So, by educating the tyre retailers and the car owners in all aspects of car safety and good luck to them in the future, we need dedicated professionals like them to drill home the message.

Eric Roberts

Useful Links TyreSafe –


Exhaust System-is this the worse” bodge job” ever? On Seat Alhambra just to try save a little money

Exhaust System It never surprises me when I see some of the exhaust system “bodge jobs” that our customers do to keep their cars running.

Last Saturday was no exception?

We had a visit from a guy in a Blue Seat Alhambra people carrier. He asked if we could give him a price for a new exhaust system fitting. When we checked the parts out we first of all discovered that the car had its catalytic converter removed and replaced with a straight piece of exhaust pipe.

Exhaust System

Badly repaired exhaust picture one

When the car was hoisted up on the ramp, we could not believe what we saw. Alex one of my senior staff, gave me a shout, to come over and look at the old  exhaust system.

I could not believe what I was looking at. It must have taken the guy hours on his back trying to do a homemade repair to the exhaust system silencer boxes.

They were wrapped in tin foil and electrician’s tape, to try to hold the exhaust system together. I have never seen anything like it?

The general exhaust system home repair jobs are usually with old tin cans bound together with wire. Some of these jobs take the car owners hours to repair and when combined with two or three tubes of exhaust paste, don’t look a bad job.

Because, we understand that exhaust systems are not cheap these days. For this reason,  this was a real extreme job, to try to save him spending any money.

We had a small bet on that the guy would or would not buy an exhaust from us, and sure enough, the gut left the garage and never came back. We knew from our

Exhaust System

badly repaired exhaust box two

local exhaust system supplier, that the guy was going everywhere for a cheap exhaust.

To be truthful this kind of job would have been a real pain. Everything would have been seized up and the job would have needed all new exhaust brackets and exhaust studs, so I am glad that the guy moved on.

He probably still has not bought a new exhaust system, and just keeps bodging it up?

Eric Roberts

Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warranty-For your peace of Mind

Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warranty a good thing or not?

Throughout my long spell in the tyre trade. Naturally, there have been many ways that tyre companies have attracted customers to their tyre products.

“What goes around comes around” as they say, many of the tactics for selling tyres have been seen before. This includes the Apollo warranty offer. I am knocking this offer, in fact I am an Apollo tyre dealer and it is something that I have always tried to do in the past.

I say tried because it is how the customer has reacted.  Therefore, I would come to the decision as to supply the driver with a new tyre or not. As part of our customer Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warrantyrelations, we always try to help a customer that has fallen fowl of a damaged tyre, after they have purchased a new tyre, it is always depressing when they damage the new tyre (whether accidental or not), after only a few days.

Most tyre accidental damage is caused by the usual culprit “a nail or a screw”. In this case we would try to repair the tyre “free of charge”. If the tyre was not repairable and the customer has had a reasonable attitude we would then exchange the tyre free of charge.

As you may have noticed I say “reasonable attitude”? Some people come in to our reception shouting and bawling about “how crap” our tyres are? These people have attitude problems and nothing we say would have appeased the situation.

This is where the Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warranty would come in.

If they had purchased Apollo tyres then we will now just go through the correct procedure and follow the Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warranty rules and procedures. This way should take out all the aggression and anger from the irate customer.

I am sure that other tyre retailers experience the same customer problems, when they come into your reception “effing and blinding” in front of your other customers?

This Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warranty helps take away the stress. Because the customer should have read all about the Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warranty before they purchased the tyres and they can come back and sort the problem out in a reasonable manner.

To finalise. I always remember an old story; a customer came into a tyre retailer complaining about an Avon tyre that he recently purchased? He said that the tyre had blown out? The retailer said that he could fill out the mandatory complaint form and he would send the tyre back to Avon, for examination.

Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warranty

Just as coincidence would have it, the Avon salesman was calling at this retailer at the same time. The rep stepped in and offered the man a brand new Avon tyre, thinking that he was doing the right thing?

The customer accepted the offer, had a new tyre fitted and off he went. The rep did not know that the tyre blowout had caused an accident a few weeks earlier and the customer sued Avon tyres for admitting liability

This is why I have always been cautious about making tyre decisions without the expert advice of the tyre manufacturer. I am always pleased when tyre manufacturers come up with these ideas, such as the Apollo Tyre 2 Year Warranty.

Eric Roberts

Apollo Tyres Registration Form Online… 

Vauxhall Vectra Air Conditioning Problems?

It is now the beginning of September and the car air conditioning season is almost over. We still get problems, though. A Vauxhall Vectra came into our garage in Halifax, with the air conditioning not working.

In recent times(during a hot spell) we have had a few Vauxhall Vectra cars in with the air conditioning not working.


One guy, the owner of a Vauxhall Vectra GSL found that when he pressed the air con button in the car the revs dropped on the engine, but there was no cold air coming through into the car?

We discovered that he had a plug connection to the compressor that was not connecting properly. The compressor was failing to engage, because of the faulty connectors wiring. We repaired the faulty wiring and the compressor started to engage. The system worked fine and the customer went away happy.

Vauxhall Vectra

Vauxhall Vectra has to have full front removed to get to the condenser.

Another Vauxhall Vectra came into us with her air conditioning failing to work. We tried to re-gas the system but the air con system was not holding the gas. On inspection with our leak detector, we noticed that there was a hairline crack on one of the pipes that were coming from the compressor. This pipe was causing her all the trouble. We ordered a new pipe, fitted it and re-gassed the air conditioning system. Once again the lady went away happy with her air con working to perfection.

The Vauxhall Vectra is also prone to having a damaged condenser.

This is located at the very front of the car and looks just like a radiator. To get to the compressor, you have to remove the whole body panel. When the customer brought in the car, he told us that his aircon was out of order. The first thing we did was to check for leaks with our special fluid. The leak test bought up a leaking condenser.

It looked like the condenser had been hit by a stone and was damaged. This is a common Vauxhall Vectra fault because the condenser is exposed at the front. We fitted a new condenser and re-tested the system before re-gassing it. After the re-gassing the air conditioning

Vauxhall Vectra

Vauxhall Vectra condenser showing debris and damage

the system worked fine and the guy went away a happy bunny (the day was a scorcher)

Eric Roberts