Pellon Autocentre Leaves Unipart

Pellon Autocentre Leaves Unipart

Pellon Autocentre Joins Unipart
Pellon Autocentre Joins Unipart

 

Eric Roberts MD of Pellon-auto centre has recently attended a regional meeting of Unipart Car Care Centres (UCCC). This was in a hotel in Wakefield West Yorkshire. New plans that mean that Pellon Autocentre Joins Unipart was unveiled to upgrade their new image to the garage members.

UCCC Members will be offered complete new signage. Consequently, by using Unipart’s new updated logo. This logo is very similar to the present one. Because it appeared that only a slight modification to upgrade. Eric Roberts says “The new image looks very stylish. Although there is not lots of change, the new design will look very useful. Especially, when bonded together with all the other promotional effects that will be on offer to us.

Our garages images are in the Unipart style and colours.”
Unipart will still provide their garage network with their website design service to help its individual garages build their website. This service will be subsidized by Unipart, rolling on from the old system. This offer has been taken up by over 500 garages and has become a favourite feature to the garages in the scheme.
Motorcodes will still play a significant part in Unipart’s big changes; this will ensure an excellent standard of quality across the complete network. Therefore, is crucial when offering a nationwide warranty service to the networks customers.

Pellon Autocentre Leaves Unipart

A brand new feature will be the introduction of Ben Collins, (the former “sting” from Top Gear motoring programme on TV). Ben will be helping promote the Car Care Centres at a national and local levels, holding regular events across the country.
Another new feature will be the introduction of more training facility. Garages participating will have the use of Unipart’s technical helpline and training staff support. “This Pellon Autocentre leaves Unipart service will be of great use to participating garages such as ourselves,” says Eric Roberts.
Unipart will be revamping the existing web site. This website will be fully optimised, and search engine friendly. Links to participating members websites. Furthermore, offering the partners a right online image with facilities to offer online service and MOT booking.

Furthermore, the new work-wear was also on display for the garage owners to browse over and the meeting concluded with a buffet. Unipart’s marketing director Wendy Williams conducted the meeting in a very professional manner, and it felt that all the participating centre members in attendance, were looking forward to the new changes with great anticipation.

Latest 2020 update to our total independence

Lastly, I have recently, made a decision to leave the Unipart set up. Importantly, the organization has recently come under pressure from other similar trade groups. So, in the final analysis I thought that we should move forward as an independent garage being able to trade with all the trade groups. Given these points, I believe that the car parts replacement market has also had a recent shake up. So, giving us the opportunity to buy parts and service parts at better prices for our customers. Generally speaking, trade is very good following the recent “Corvid 19” MOT Testing restrictions. Here at Pellon Autocentre we are now free from any motoring organizations and totally independent.

Find the tyres you need at discount prices using the Pellon Tyres web site.

 

Maintenance Free batteries-are now becoming the normal fitment on most cars and trucks

This is a short article about maintenance free batteries

 The phrase maintenance free batteries is only partly correct.  What are Maintenance Free Battery vs Conventional  Cheap Car batteries , use up some of the water in their diluted mixture of sulphuric acid electrolyte during there every day cycle of charging and discharging. The electrolyte process turns into a gas mixture of oxygen and hydrogen and escapes from the battery. WE then add water to keep the battery topped up.

Maintenance Free batteries
Lucas Maintenance free batteries

Low Maintenance batteries known as MF batteries use a different type of lead alloy. They use calcium alloy of lead and not a lead antimony alloy. This reduces the gassing therefore stops the need to keep topping up your battery. Indeed means that you have no need to top up your battery during the normal life of your  Battery.
The only problem can occur in exceptionally high temperatures where the Maintenance free batteries may boil but the newer types of MF battery now have pressure relief valves that come into operation when the pressure may get too high. For further reading…http://uk.ask.com/question/what-is-a-maintenance-free-battery

Altogether these batteries are becoming the normal standard for modern vehicle standards and are worth buying instead of cheap batteries.

Car batteries remained much the same, the only thing that changed was the different terminals and physical sizes of the batteries, battery plates, became a new mix of alloys and lead alloys and companies the likes of Lucas batteries became the first to introduce practically sealed batteries that were maintenance free, there were no screw tops on the battery for the driver to check the acid level.

Also there was the evolution of the cars. Many cars were now coming out on more sophisticated electrical systems. Which required car batteries with more power. We found that a difference in the old type battery and the new type of battery was that the new types of battery did not give you much time after failure, one morning the battery light would come on in your car and you would need a new battery, there and then; you do not have the time any more. It is very important to remember, that the Maintenance free batteries must be stood up in the upright position. The battery caps do not unscrew and so the battery is classed as sealed. But it is important to remember that the battery is not leak proof.

2020 AGM car battery update

At the present time then the AGM car battery has become very important! Because, of the popularity of the “Stop-Start” cars that are now on the market. So, the main idea of these cars is to save fuel consumption therefore reducing green gas emission’s. Given these points, a new type of stronger battery was needed to support the constant starting and stopping of the cars engine. Especially, when driving in the cities and towns. Of course where many stops would take place at road junctions, traffic lights and many other situations.

Importantly, the AGM battery was chosen! Because of the deep cycle capability of this type of battery.

Check Your caravan Tyres-This includes Motorhome tyres- before your journey

Check Your caravan Tyres

Check Your CARAVAN TYRES

Check Your CARAVAN TYRES

Tyre experts recommend that owners of any trailed vehicles should remove the complete wheel or wheels .Then take them to their favorite garage or auto centre. Then have them checked by a professional member of the team. It is important that the wheels  are given a thorough inspection, this will ensure the safest possible outcome. So Check Your CARAVAN and MOTORHOME TYRES . The most common thing found on caravan tyres is sidewall cracking. This usually only comes to light when the tyre is removed. We can flex the sidewall with the tyre removed from the wheel, and this will show the extent of the cracking. This problem is due to the affect of ultra-violet light acting on the carbon black. This is in the make up of the tyre when the caravan is parked, and is more common on Old Michelin tyres.     

This information also applies to motor-homes.

The wheels will be checked for corrosion. Then the tyres will be removed from the wheels and checked for internal cuts and damage. This is most important as unseen damage can become a nightmare scenario. Especially, when going down a motorway at sixty mile per hour and losing complete control due to tyre failure.

Check Your CARAVAN TYRES
Tyre (Photo credit: dave)

The tyre dealer will then Check Your vehicles tyres regularly, the outside of the for damage to the tread area and the sidewalls for cuts and cracks. Also important is to check the age of the tyre, this can be easily done by an expert fitter. Tyres do become out of date after six years and are affected by aging in the sidewalls.

Check Your CARAVAN TYRES

As stated above cracks start to form around the rim area due to the caravan wheels been stood in the Sun for long hours. Especially, during the Summer months. And eventually the carbon black, that is used in the manufacture of the caravan  tyres, starts to break down. Small but deep cracks start to form around the rim area. This will eventually join up to create a very dangerous hazard. Indeed this is one of the most common cause for tyre blowouts on caravans and trailers. Any caravan tyres with cracks and cuts should be scrapped and replaced with a new tyre. Finally if everything is OK the pressures and tyre valves should be checked to the correct loading for your vehicle and trailer.

Another important point is to have the vehicle loading checked on your caravan tyres,

to make sure that the wheel set up conforms to your caravan or trailers recommended weight carrying capacity. Some of the larger heavier vehicle require more heavy duty tyres to carry the extra loading, your tyre dealer will advise you on the correct fitments by advising you fit either re-enforced or larger ply rated ones.
Check Your CARAVAN TYRES pressures, which should always be checked and adjusted when the pressures are cold before every journey. If in doubt replace with new and correct  caravan tyres.

2020 Update

At the present time then the caravan/motorhome market has hit the roof. Henceforth, so has the tyre market for these types of vehicle. So, it is even more important to fit the correct tyres on these vehicles. of course the main consideration is the weight that these vehicles will carry! Especially when loaded up ready for the holidays.

Most drivers of these vehicles are responsible and do buy the correct tyres. Indeed tyre companies now make special tyres for these vehicles. Michelin tyres are a good example. Hence offering the Michelin Agilis Camping tyre range.

Heres a great Email that a kind customer about this subject-

Dear Mr. Roberts

I recently came across a blog which appears to be headed by you.  The content was of great interest to me. So, for a large number of years, have had a 1988 Ford Transit Mk III AutoSleeper motorhome. Which, I had bought it to try and improve on the lack of guts of an earlier Mk II Transit and to avoid the types of construction which led to continual water leaks! I therefore pulled this Mk III Transit to pieces, using hands far more competent than myself, and fitted a 2.9 EFi V6 Ford engine with all ancillaries plus heavy duty clutch and gearbox. Importantly, I then fitted a sub-frame with front axle, rear axle, running gear and anti roll bars etc.  derived from a later heavy duty Transit and added adjustable dampers.

I needed to do quite a lot of other modifications to get the vehicle the way I wanted it. I thus have a wonderful high performance motorhome which, due to the massive increase in weight low down, it has a centre of gravity which should be below floor level or very near.  Thus, a very stable motorhome to drive at high speed to and from Ireland and on winding roads between times. In particular, I had researched tyres for the vehicle which has the 15” 6 stud wheels off the later Transit,  I remind with a single wheel rear axle, not double.  I looked at bullion vans and similar on the same set up and found that Michelin Agilis was the choice. I therefore fitted a set of Michelin Agilis 81’s, as they were at that time.

They were made in France.

I enquired of Technical Dept. at Michelin of the pressures I should run at and gave the weighbridge weights for my vehicle fully laden.  Particularly emphasizing that it was single rear wheel axle set up.  They assured me, particularly the rear tyres, should run at 42psi. So,  I questioned this but assurance was given again. Needless to say, with that pressure in the rear tyres, they looked as thought they had a puncture and would be unsafe to drive on!  The bullion vans were running 62psi minimum on the rear and I therefore put similar pressure in my rear tyres to put the matter right.  This achieved transformation. I therefore enjoyed my family trips to the West of Ireland and back many times and found the journeys comparatively relaxing compared with the trips in the previous Transit.

An MOT inspector commented that the vehicle was a delight to drive and asserted that it felt more like a high performance car than a motorhome.  He further added that most people merely stuffed a more powerful engine into a vehicle and did little more, but I had created a completely new vehicle by altering the specification so that everything gelled together to create something that  might have come out of the factory. I only had two problems with the tyres:  the first not really with the tyre, was that I suffered a burst tyre valve (fortunately when the vehicle was stationary).  I did write to the motoring press.  They seemed to treat me as a crank and were unwilling to make the public aware of the dangers.

 I fitted steel valves and solved the problem.

I noted in the motoring press, after about 3 years, an increasing number of letters. Advising motorhome owners who had gone down the motorway on their side or roof through a blowout. That they should fit steel valves when running high pressure!

The other problem I had, on a trip via Galloway:  I woke up one morning on campsite. So, to find that one rear tyre appeared very soft.  I went to the local tyre distributor! And estimated that I would receive my pension book before they got to attend to me!  I therefore put some air in the tyre and monitored it.  It held pressure perfectly.  When I got home, however, the mechanic who helps me. Indicated that one rear tyre had been cut deeply in the groove of the tread (almost as though with a Stanley knife).  He agreed with me however that it appeared to be tyre failure rather than sabotage.  I merely fitted a replacement to match the others.

Shortly afterwards, the tread was getting low on two of the tyres. I was advised to fit a later Michelin Agilis (Green X) ! Which I think was the early camping tyre, country of origin unknown.  A pair of these  were fitted to the rear. It was noticeable that the tyres seemed to have more of a balloon effect. Especially, in the side walls ! Also that they had no kerbing blocks in the side walls which possibly made the side walls more flexible.

I lost the precision straight line stability of the steering but worse found that the vehicle suffered from dreadful tramlining on the inside lane of motorways which I put down to the mix of tyres. There was no undue wear in the steering or suspension, the weight had been maintained as normal, as also the tyre pressures.

The vehicle then came out of use for a few years due to various family bereavements etc.

 Firstly, I am now in need of getting the vehicle back in trim and propose to replace all tyres. My inclination is to consider fitting a set of latest Michelin Agilis 3 which appear to be very similar in design to my original tyres and have side walls which will be the nearest match from a behavioral point of view.

Secondly, I am wary of the Michelin Agilis camping tyres referred to above, just in case they perpetuate the problem mentioned above, but also in view of the fact that motorhome owners (when I read their forums) seem to have had many problems with these particular tyres. I have always been a very safety conscious person and I am not prepared to take any risks which, for a vehicle like mine, means that I consider the tyres the most important part of the vehicle. I annex an image of the vehicle from which you will that it has a close coupled chassis design which has a large overhang at the rear.

The revised plating shown on the attached and the weighbridge weights where the vehicle was fully laden are shown on this scribbled note attached.  The actual travelling weights should normally be slightly less. The vehicle is capable of 112mph but is fitted with a governor on the back of the gearbox to limit the speed to approximately 89mph. So, I have previously been told, however, that the first statistic is the one that governs the tyre spec.

I hope you do not find this letter too long.

I could supply a lot more information, if needed, and hope that you will be able to give me some feedback of your views as to the direction in which I should go.  You might be interested to know. That I have regularly seen people with front wheel drive motorhomes. Being towed off grass campsites (weight in the back, drive on the front).  On one occasion in very wet weather, I awoke in the morning to find my wheel rims level with the turf.  I started and warmed the engine thoroughly then, despite leaving some horrific ruts for quite a long distance. I crawled the vehicle out without spinning a wheel!

The only downside to the vehicle is the petrol consumption!

Yours sincerely,

Mark Fitzgerald-Hart

ORNHAMS HOLDINGS

Ornhams Hall – Boroughbridge – York – YO51 9JH

Audi TT Hand-Brake failure- lady customers blue TT started creeping downhill?

Audi TT Hand-Brake failure

Audi TT Hand-Brake failure; The Audi TT has in the past had many problems with the handbrake. There have been several reasons for this issue.

Last week a good customer of ours told us that his daughter had parked her car on a slight slope while she went into the bank. When she returned, the car had moved down the hill about ten feet. Luckily for her, the cat had come to rest against a very high pathway edge.

She was kind of scared and reflected in her mind what could have happened?

His daughter was in her late twenties and worked as an insurance broker in Halifax UK. The family brought all their cars into my garage for servicing and repairs; this Audi TT was no exception.

The father then phoned us and told us the story. The first thing that we asked was “whether she had put the handbrake on at all?” He said that this was the first

Audi TT Hand-Brake failure
Audi TT Hand-Brake failure

the thing that she had checked.

The car finally arrived at the garage, and the young lady left it with us for the day. I often look at the particular forums on the internet. The Audi forum did come up with a few different problems associated with Audi TT handbrake failure problems.

Audi TT Hand-Brake failure

We put the Audi TT up onto a ramp and removed the wheels. Although the problem was with the rear handbrake, we always check all the cars brakes to be on the safe side. The car was registered in 2005 and was 1800 Turbo special edition. A 225 BHP engine powered the car, giving a high performance.

Alex had the responsibility to repair this car. He set to work examining all the parts that make up the handbrake. Everything looked in good order and so Alex greased the moving parts and began to examine the discs and pads.

The brake discs looked in good condition, but Alex noticed that the pads had a shine on them. Shiny pads usually mean that they had “gone hard.”

We decided to fit a new set of pads as we suspected that this was the culprit. Alex completed the work and tested the handbrake on some of the steep hills that surround Halifax. He ran the car making sure the brakes were hot and checked the handbrake again.

Finally, another satisfied customer drove away into the sunset.

Daewoo Matiz Engine management Light problem?

Daewoo Matiz Engine management Light problem?

Daewoo Matiz Engine Management Light problem?; Engine management light problems are a common feature of owning a busy Service centre, like the one here at Pellon Tyres in Halifax UK. I would not be lying if I said that we get two or three cars in a week for related engine management light problems.

I must say that it is one of those things that can scare our customers to death. They can drive their cars around with a bald tyre for months, but as soon as a warning light comes on, they are straight over to us for our opinion and possible corrective action.

Our latest light on problem came from a lady who had a Daewoo Matiz Engine Management warning Light problem? The woman said that she did not think that her car was running properly and was a bit sluggish. Also, a picture of an engine lit up on her dashboard.

As most customers do, (no matter what the car make or model), she panicked. Our customer  was waiting at the door ready for when we opened up the garage

Daewoo Matiz Engine management Light problem?
The problem spark plugs?

doors. This problem can indeed be anything to do with the engine management system. From the expensive coil pack to a faulty fuel injector.

Alex, one of my mechanical staff, plugged our engine management machine into the car and read the fault codes. The code came up as a cylinder misfire, which tied up with the ladies statement of the car not running correctly and sluggishly.

Daewoo Matiz Engine management Light problem?

Like many of our customers think, she thought she was going to need a new engine and was probably on “tender hooks” waiting for us to call her back with our assessment of the damage and the price. We checked most likely cause, the spark plugs. Indeed, the plugs were in a bad condition, and we suspected that this was the cause.

Everything else looked fine and so we fitted a new set of plugs. The car ran much better and so we reset the engine warning light, and road tested the car. Everything ended up right, and we informed the stressed lady customer, who was highly delighted with our low price repairs.

All-Season Tyres versus winter tyres-(tested)-Are they better than changing to winter tyres?

Nokian Tyres Hakkapeliitta Nine

All-Season Tyres versus winter tyres

All-Season Tyres versus winter tyres-This is yet another test, regarding the effectiveness of All-Season Tyres versus winter tyres. It is normally the winter tyres versus the summer tyres. The difference in recent years is that we have seen the introduction of new tyre products with differing claims and counter claims.

All-Season Tyres versus winter tyres

Leading tyre companies Pirelli, Michelin, Nokian and Goodyear are all launching new all-season products this year. The problem is that, so are many of the mid-range tyre suppliers. These include Apollo tyres with their excellent Vredestein range of winter and all-season tyres.

Most of the tyres that were tested came out very well, n but all-season tyres are not the same as winter tyres. In my opinion, it is still better to fit the real thing and stick to winter tyres. This is especially if you live in a hilly or mountainous region of the UK. Here in Yorkshire, we have a mixture of terrain, but we do have many hills. These hills are large and small and this is where we need the proper winter tyres.

winter tyres are a great debate.

But the fact is that you are better fitting the different products depending where you live. General All-season tyres do offer the driver better protection in all the types of weather that we can expect in a bad UK winter. This, in my opinion, is if you live in the part of the country that has a flat landscape. This would be in say Lincolnshire and Norfolk. All-season tyres are certainly better than using summer tyres.

I can foresee a future when most tyres produced will be of the all-season variety. Why not? It is up to the car manufacturers to these tyres as original equipment. The problem would be that the fact that the tread pattern is more aggressive, alters the rolling resistance of the tyre. This would be no good for the new hybrid and electric cars unless the tyre designers came up with yet another special tyre to fit the electric cars?

The tyre tests can be seen on  http://www.particlenews.com/

BMW Mini Wheel bearing-Our customer thought it was just tyre noise to start with?

BMW Mini Wheel bearing

BMW Mini Wheel bearing

So, this was one of those customers that are not your customer if you get what I mean. Let me explain? The owner of this BMW Mini wheel bearing problem had taken the car with its noise problem to two other garages, before finally bringing his car into us.

The first garage put the problem down to the tyres. They were Mini run-flat tyres, 205/45R17 and these tyres were fitted to the original alloy wheels. I personally think that the early Minis were noisy to drive. I thought it was the run-flat tyres, due to the fact that they are very stiff and hard tyres. These tyres have

strengthened sidewalls and are a different tread compound to give them the extra strength, for if a puncture occurs and the tyres are then driven to safety at 50 MPH.

 Wheel bearings

The guy paid them for an hours labour and then moved to the second garage. They told him more or less the same. The tyres are noisy due to construction and noisy roads. The guy was still not happy and so came to us for our advice.

Pellon Auto centre, Halifax, Yorkshire, UK, have a large number of customers that own BMW Minis. We have come across customers with noise complaints before. We did, however, check the tyres and the tyre pressures and they were fine. The next step was the wheel bearings. This has been a common problem for us in the past.

Just as we suspected one BMW Mini Wheel bearing was found to have a little play in it. It did not look to be much, but with the weight of the car and the wheel turning then the noise would have been replicated many times.

We told the relieved customer and carried out the work on the wheel bearings. The outcome was a much quieter BMW Mini and a happy customer.

Nissan Navara Clutch replacement-Duel Mass Flywheel replaced.

Nissan Navara Clutch replacement

Nissan Navara Clutch replacement; One of the car problems that increase after the winter driving period, is a noticeable rise in the number of clutches that we fit. The other day was no exception. One of our first jobs that were booked in was a Nissan Navara Clutch replacement.

Clutches fall into two main categories. These are cars that are fitted with manual gearboxes and also automatic gearboxes. In the UK, the most popular type of gearbox, by far is the manual type of gearbox.

Other types do exist, but they are mainly on the upmarket car models and motorsport cars.

As most of my readers probably know the clutch fits between the engine and the manual gearbox and this Nissan Navara Clutch replacement, was no different.

Nissan Navara Clutch replacement
Nissan Navara Clutch replacement

The clutch enables the driver to change gears, in response to the car engine speed. This enables a smooth transfer of power, from the engine to the gearbox.

The clutch plate is made from a similar material to your brake shoes and eventually, wear away. Like anything else it depends on how the driver treats the clutch, as to how long it will last. The guy with the Nissan Navara could feel the clutch slipping when the truck was fully loaded. He also had problems engaging his gears on occasions.

Nissan Navara Clutch replacement

He brought it into us here at Pellon Halifax UK, for us to check it out. Sure enough, the clutch was slipping and in need of a new one fitting.

The Nissan Navara Clutch replacement, meant us removing the gearbox away from the engine. The Navara is an inline unit, which means that the engine and gearbox are lined from front to rear, driving the rear wheels.

Alex was allocated the job and he soon started to remove the holding nuts and bolts. The Navara is a big vehicle, compared to the clutches that we normally fit and Alex had to use hydraulic engine stands to take the weight of the extremely heavy gearbox when it was removed.

When we checked out the parts, the computer informed us that this model could be fitted with a Duel mass Flywheel (DMF). These were invented to take out many of the stresses and vibrations that were associated with diesel engine cars. In my opinion, some vehicles do not need it. This has become more obvious to me, when certain clutch manufacturers, make an alternative solid “Blue-Print“clutch to replace the DMF.

We contacted the customer and explained to him about the DMF and the solid clutch. He phoned back and gave us permission to fit the solid clutch. This was fitted and the gearbox built back up. The Nissan Navara Clutch replacement was complete and the customer collected his car and away he went.

All-terrain Tyres-A wide range of tyres for the Land Rover or SUV owner?

All-terrain Tyres

There are many different types and makes of 4×4 and SUV vehicles on today’s roads, and so explaining about which tyres to use for various vehicle makes, becomes nigh impossible.

All-terrain Tyres

For this purpose, I am going to use the Land Rover, for my explanation into all-terrain tyres. All-terrain tyres are for the driver who may do the mixed on-road driving and off-road driving. Many of the SUV’s come out on a standard summer tyre. But the type of tyre that most people associate this kind of vehicle on is a more rugged tyre.

This is where the all-terrain tyres, come into their own. A good example that I came across recently was at an agricultural show in Halifax where my tyre business is based. The cars are all parked in a grassy area, adjacent to the showground. I suspect that you now know what I am about to say because many drivers have experienced this for themselves.

The day started out to be sunny but in the afternoon, then heavy thundery showers were peppering the Halifax area. One shower turned into a torrential deluge, sending spectators and exhibitors for the shelter of the marques. The fun came when the visitors started to drift to the car park and then home. To my surprise, most small family cars did alright, apart from a little skidding.

However, to my surprise, the cars that were suffering and getting stuck were the SUV’s and were also driven by lady drivers. The one I helped was a BMW, with brand new Continental summer tyres fitted. The car was useless and skidded all over the place.

All-terrain Tyres

Halifax is not what you could call a rural area. The terrain is hilly with many small steep bendy lanes and “B” roads. We also have a successful Land Rover dealer in the area, and so it is a perfect scenario to fit a set of all-terrain tyres. These are the tyres you want if you are driving on a mix of road surfaces. You can go from tarmac roads straight onto dirt and farm and forest roads, with high confidence of not losing traction.

The ratio of on/off road capability is most often about 60/40. The one tyre that I would recommend through years of experience is the General Grabber AT. These all-terrain tyres are ideal for the Land Rover owners and any other type of these vehicles. The General Grabber tyres also carry the “snowflake” symbol, which means they are also ideal for bad winter weather and snow.

Fit these tyres and you will be the person that gets to work on time, or can pull off the grass at an agricultural show?