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Edmonton car mechanics

Learn More About Car Suspensions

Have you driven a car without a suspension system? Well, if you have then you’d be more than a 100 years old! It was in the year 1904, when a young man named William Brush helped in devising the modern automobile suspension system. After experiencing difficulties while cornering his car at the speed of 50km/hr, Brush almost lost control and crashed onto a barbed-wire fence because there was no suspension system in his car. To ensure this accident didn’t repeat again, he designed the revolutionary suspension system within a couple of years. This revolutionary system incorporated two innovations – front coil springs and shock absorbers, assembled together and mounted on a flexible hickory axle.

Thanks to his invention, today’s suspension system still consists of the same main components – springs, shock absorbers and struts. The job of a suspension system is to absorb irregularities on the road and allow the driver to maintain control of his vehicle through a turn. The most significant benefit of such a system is to maintain continuous tire-to-road contact through all road conditions. Also, changing suspension components can help in altering the handling characteristics of the vehicle. Contact our professional Edmonton car mechanics to know more in-depth about car suspension components. But first, it’s good to know the basics of a suspension system.

Types of Springs

In determining the balance between stiffness and ride quality, springs are the primary factors as they support the weight of each corner of the vehicle. They also determine ride height. The weight held up by the suspension system is called sprung weight. The frame, engine, and transmission are included in sprung weight. Anything between the spring and road is unsprung weight, which includes the tires, steering knuckles or spindles and brakes. Handling and ride quality of cars with less unsprung weight are better. There are several types of springs used in the automobile industry today and they are – coil spring, leaf springs, and air springs.

Shock Absorbers

Cars and light trucks with standard suspension systems are usually equipped with shock absorbers. When a car without shock absorbers experiences a bump, the spring in the suspension system continues to shorten and lengthen for sometime after it has been compressed and released. Such a vehicle would be dangerous to drive as the spring action may produce a very bumpy and uncomfortable ride.

Shock absorbers dampen the motion of a suspension. They can be termed as dampers as well. They control the transient motion of the vehicle. The amount of resistance depends on how fast the suspension moves. Shock absorbers not only give a comfortable ride but also help ensure all four tires stay in contact with the road. This also ensures better stability and control.


Struts are a major structural part of the suspension system, unlike shock absorbers. There are two main actions struts perform – dampen the movement of the springs as they compress and rebound, and provide structural support to the vehicle’s suspension and hold the tire in an aligned position. Struts affect riding comfort and enhance handling, vehicle braking, control, steering, wheel alignment and tire wear.

Suspension maintenance cannot be done by inexperienced people. Edmonton car mechanics are qualified technicians who have years of experience and knowledge about cars and their component systems. If you wish to know more about suspension maintenance or want to get your vehicle’s suspension system inspected, get in touch with us.

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Edmonton Car Repair Services

Do Electrical Systems Consume Power and Affect your Car’s Performance?

The battery of a vehicle is responsible for the proper functioning of many devices, which include the ignition and charging system, lighting system, and other electronic devices. The starting and charging systems are interrelated by a continual cycle of converting chemical energy to mechanical energy and then back again. All these electrical systems operate on chemical batteries, which convert chemical energy into mechanical energy. The starter motor uses mechanical energy to crank the engine and, once the engine is charged up, it’s a merry-go-round sort of a relationship. The battery’s chemical energy is then changed to electrical energy when it supplies current to the starter motor and accessories.

Well, it’s best to seek help from professional mechanics to understand the subject in detail, however, this article will help you know why it is important to be aware of the functioning of electrical systems in vehicles. The more you know and learn about car batteries and electrical systems, the better you will be able to handle your car’s electrical components in case of emergencies.

What is a starter motor?

The starter motor is a powerful electric motor. It consists of a small gear attached to the end of the battery. On activating the starter motor, the gear meshes with a larger gear which is attached to the engine, and ignites the engine. The starter automatically disengages, when the engine starts spinning faster than the starter.

What else is affected by the battery?

When the battery in your car is near the end of its useful life or has gone bad, the alternator may not supply the required amount of alternating current (AC) to keep the car operating properly. The entire system suffers from poor performance or system failure, when other components in the charging system start malfunctioning.

To prolong battery life, the battery, cable and terminal ends must be kept clean and free from corrosion. It’s important to periodically test the battery and starting/charging system for proper performance. Professional car mechanics can easily predict when a battery is near the end of its life.

What are belts and hoses?

A car’s belts and hoses are significant to the cooling, air conditioning and charging systems, and the engine itself. The crankshaft and camshaft are mechanically synchronized by the timing belt to maintain engine timing. The belt on the outside of the engine, whether it is a serpentine, fan belt or V-belt, transmits power from the engine to accessories such as air-conditioning, the charging system, and fans. To keep the engine cool, the radiator and heater hoses carry coolant to and from the engine. Don’t avoid routine maintenance of the timing belts and hoses because if they breakdown, you may be left stranded.

Always remember that your driving habits may affect the functioning of your car’s engine. Frequent engine on/off causes more wear on the starter than a simple trip back and forth to work. Your car’s battery, starting and charging systems help ensure that your vehicle operates smoothly and efficiently in all sorts of driving conditions. You should get your car’s electrical systems checked regularly by qualified Edmonton car mechanics. All these electrical systems consume power. And when they are not properly maintained, they affect the performance of your car. Our Edmonton car repair services will help you keep your vehicle in great shape.

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How To Choose High Performance Wheels

The different parts of your car have to be carefully and regularly maintained, serviced, repaired, or even replaced as and when required. Replacing should be the last resort; it’s neither an economical nor an environmentally friendly option. So to ensure that your vehicle runs smoothly, you need to regularly maintain and service it to avoid costly repairs and replacements. Always remember, even when you don’t use your vehicle often, you must still maintain it regularly to avoid costly repairs or replacements in the future.

Tires and wheels are carefully engineered to provide an optimum combination of grip, ride quality, road feel, noise control, and tire wear. Tires carry an enormous burden every time you take your car for a spin. There are various reasons why this happens. Your driving style, driving conditions, and the quality of terrain you drive on determine how soon your tires get worn out. Hence, choosing high performance wheels, depending on the specs of your car and your driving style can certainly help you in the long run.

Our professional Edmonton car repair specialists can help you select the best wheels and tires for your car, in order to increase its overall performance. High performance wheels can improve both the appearance as well as the performance of replacement tires.

Selecting Wheel Rims

There are several factors you must consider when selecting wheel rims. Select the right sized wheels for your car and not just ones which look good. The wheels should be compatible with your vehicle to give you the best ride quality.

Larger wheel rims do have a nice appearance, but they don’t always offer the best ride quality. Large wheel rims typically increase the steering responsiveness and make handling the vehicle a bit easier. On the contrary, if the wheels are too heavy, then the handling decreases significantly. Plus, the added weight decreases performance and increases fuel costs. That’s why it’s essential for you to know which is the right wheel size for your vehicle and most importantly, which ones are compatible.

Selecting Wheel Width

The wheel’s width influences the handling and driving quality. Thus, you must always choose a rim width within the range of the tire’s acceptable wheel width specifications. Choosing a wider rim increases cornering ability, steering response, and vehicular stability. Select a rim width that is 90% as wide as the tread width. This provides a good balance between performance and ride quality. Always ensure that the chosen rim width is within the tire’s range of acceptable rim width specifications.

Choosing a narrow rim does improve the ride quality, but may sacrifice the tire’s ultimate performance capabilities. You can also choose a mid-range rim width. This provides a balance between handling and ride quality.

There are many reasons why car owners look for new high-performance wheels for their vehicles. Of course, the most important reason is ensuring safety. The second most important reason is to increase the performance and ride quality. If your vehicle’s handling has become too stiff or if the wheels don’t give you the proper grip, you need to get your wheels inspected and replaced at the earliest. Ignoring wheel related issues can be dangerous. So get your car to our garage for a quick inspection if you’ve been experiencing any kind of problem. We at Apex Specialized have years of experience and expertise in maintaining, repairing, and servicing cars in Edmonton. Our Edmonton car repair specialists will thoroughly inspect each and every component of your car and give you a detailed analysis.

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