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  • Selecting New Tires and Wheels

    Sep 1, 2019



    Some of us Brooklyn Park drivers just love tires. All those little rubber hairs on new tires and the smell is wonderful. We live in a great time for tires. No matter how you drive around MN, where you want to go or the look you're after; there is a tire for you.

    The same is true about wheels. The hardest part is choosing from the thousands of wheels available at MN tire shops.

    The team at Affordable Transmissions can help you get some things in mind before you make a purchase. Let's start with function and think about how you drive.

    For example, maybe you have a large SUV but you don't drive off-road around MN, so an off-road tread isn't important. Also, because you are not out bouncing over rocks in the MN backcountry, you don't need a high profile tire to protect your rims. So that means you can probably go with the low-wide look.

    If you have a winter season with rain and snow or if you find you need better ice and snow performance, they make great, high-performance snow tires that won't make it look like you are driving a tractor.

    There really are a lot of options for any given vehicle. Brooklyn Park drivers will find it very helpful to have a discussion like this with their Brooklyn Park tire pro or the tire experts at Affordable Transmissions when they need new tires. You can find the best solutions for your driving needs and to make improvements in ride or handling.

    Picking a wheel that is the same size as what you are now running on is important and pretty simple. But, it gets trickier if you want to upsize. Just get some help when you go bigger. All that tire and wheel still needs to fit in the available space. You do not want your tires to rub when you turn or hit a bump. Brooklyn Park drivers also need to make sure their brakes and suspension bits will fit with their wheel of choice. It doesn't matter how great your car looks if it's not drivable.

    Taller, wider wheels and tires probably weigh more than your stock shoes. And it's "unsprung" weight that has a big impact on brake performance. The upsized shoes increase rotational inertia; if you go too big you may need to upgrade your brakes to compensate.

    Another possible problem is an inaccurate speedometer. This happens because the number of rotations can change with the new wheels. Fortunately, speedometers and odometers are all controlled by the engine computer; so they need to get reprogrammed at Affordable Transmissions to compensate for the bigger tires.

    No matter what you are after: low cost, long life, high performance, traction or stunning good looks, your wheel and tire professional at Affordable Transmissions in Brooklyn Park, MN, can help identify your needs and give you a custom fit. With all the options available, you don't have to compromise. There is a tire out there with your name on it!

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com




    By the Numbers: Tire Replacement at Affordable Transmissions in Brooklyn Park

    Aug 11, 2019

    Ever notice that your tire is covered with writing? It's like some hieroglyphic art form. Of course, Brooklyn Park drivers know that it's not just graffiti, but to most of us, it might as well be. Would you like to know what all those codes on your tire mean? It won't lead you to buried treasure, but it could help you make a better tire purchase at your local Brooklyn Park tire store.

    Prominently featured on your tire is a set of numbers and letters that looks something like this: 225 50 R 16 92 H. The first number is the width of the tire in millimeters, or the width between the sidewalls of the tire when it is fully inflated and not carrying a load. When Brooklyn Park drivers replace tires, they need to match this width number, or the tires won't fit properly in the wheel wells.

    The 50 is the aspect ratio of the tire, which is measured by taking the height of the sidewalls and dividing it by the tread width. If you drive off-road around the Brooklyn Park area, it should have a high aspect ratio. For high performance on the road, you want a lower aspect ratio.

    The R simply means this is a radial tire.

    The 92 is the load rating index, or in other words, a rating of how much load a tire can safely carry. If you frequently haul heavy loads around Brooklyn Park, you will want a tire with a high load rating.

    The last letter in our “code” sequence is the speed rating on the tire. Not all tires have this rating. In general, the closer the letter is to the end of the alphabet, the higher the speed rating. In other words, Z is the highest rating and A is the lowest. One exception: H comes between U and V. Why? Your guess is as good as mine.

    If you'd just as soon ignore all of the markings on your tire, that's okay. When you need to replace your tires just ask your friendly and knowledgeable Affordable Transmissions tire professional for his auto advice on the best tires for you and your vehicle. Replacing tires is a standard part of preventive maintenance for Brooklyn Park drivers vehicles. We all have to do it sooner or later. And the better we understand what we're buying, the better our vehicle will perform and the safer we will be on MN roads. Good vehicle care is informed vehicle care.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com




    Brooklyn Park, MN Winter Prep Service for Your Auto

    Jul 7, 2019

    When winter approaches in MN, Brooklyn Park residents break out the sweaters, coats, boots and mittens. We want to be ready for MN winter conditions. Your vehicle needs to be ready for winter as well. The last thing Brooklyn Park residents want is to get stranded out in the cold. You need your vehicle to be safe and reliable. It's a good idea to get caught up on any neglected maintenance items anytime - but the stakes are higher in cold MN winters.

    There are some specific things Brooklyn Park drivers need to do to have their vehicle ready for winter. The most obvious is having the antifreeze checked. If the antifreeze level is too low, it can't properly protect your engine, radiator and hoses from freezing. If your car does not seem to be making enough heat to keep you warm, your antifreeze level may be low or you could have a thermostat problem. Get it checked out at Affordable Transmissions in Brooklyn Park. If you are due for a cooling system service, now is a perfect time to have it done.

    In the cold months around Brooklyn Park we always worry about being able to stop in time when it's slick out. The first thing to remember is to slow down and allow yourself plenty of room to stop. Of course, you want your brakes to be working properly. A thorough brake inspection will reveal if the pads or any other parts need replacing. Check with your friendly and knowledgeable Affordable Transmissions service advisor to see if it is time to replace your brake fluid. It accumulates water over time which really messes with your stopping power.

    It is also a really good idea for Brooklyn Park residents to have their battery tested. A battery's cranking power really drops with the temperature. If your battery is weak in the fall, it may not be up to a MN winter. There is nothing like a dead battery in a snow storm.

    Which leads us to an emergency kit. You should always have a blanket or something to keep you and your passengers warm if you get stranded on a remote MN road. If you will be venturing away from civilization, pack more items such as food and water to help you survive. Keeping at least half a tank of gas is a good idea in case you get stuck and need to run the car to keep warm, which will also help keep your gas lines from freezing up.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com

     




    All About Your TPMS in Brooklyn Park

    May 12, 2019



    Brooklyn Park drivers know that underinflated tires wear out more quickly. Underinflation is also a major cause of tire failure for MN auto owners. More flats, blow outs, skids and longer stopping distances are all results of underinflated tires.

    It's hard for many Brooklyn Park drivers to tell when a radial tire is underinflated. If your owner’s manual recommends 35 pounds of pressure, your tire is considered significantly under-inflated at 26 pounds. The tire may not look low until it gets below 20 pounds.

    Uncle Sam to the rescue! A recent U.S. federal law required vehicle manufacturer’s to include a Tire Pressure Monitoring System - or TPMS system - in all vehicles. Many Canadian vehicles have them as well.  The system is a dashboard mounted warning light that goes off if one or more of the tires falls 25% below its pressure recommendations.

    Obviously, all of this doesn't come free for Brooklyn Park car owners. Government studies have estimated the net costs. Of course, the TPMS system itself will cost something. Maintaining the system will have a cost, replacement of worn or broken parts and tire repair cost increases. The net cost is estimated to be between $27 and $100.

    MN service centers have purchased new scanning equipment to work with the TPMS sensors and updated expensive tire change equipment to better service wheels equipped with the new monitoring systems.

    Affordable Transmissions service advisors have been trained on many systems and new tire-changing techniques. All of this adds up to significantly increased cost to the service center to perform what was once a very inexpensive service. So if you've noticed the cost of flat repairs, tire changes, and rotations going up, please keep in mind that it's because of government mandated safety equipment. Your Brooklyn Park service center just wants to keep you safely on the road - and it's committed to do so at a fair price. Remember, this change will help you avoid the most common vehicle failure, and possibly a catastrophic accident.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com




    Getting New Tires in Brooklyn Park?

    Apr 28, 2019

    There are so many tire choices in the Brooklyn Park area that selecting the right one can be a bit overwhelming for drivers. And even though it's kind of fun to have new tires on your vehicle, they're a significant investment for most Brooklyn Park area folks so you want do it right.

    Tip: talk with your friendly and knowledgeable Affordable Transmissions tire professional. He'll help you sort through the choices.

    Here are some of the issues you'll talk about: One is size – you know, all those numbers on the side of the tire. The right size is . All new vehicles are required to have stability control which, along with other important safety systems, is calibrated to work with specific tire sizes. Your Brooklyn Park tire professional can help stay within manufacturer's specifications or program a different tire size into your vehicle's computer.

    And you'll want to discuss how and where you drive to determine the type of tire you need: summer, winter,  all season tires or all-terrain. There are tires for every Brooklyn Park auto owner's needs.

    Like we said, tires are a big investment, so you want to get a good value on tires. Now that doesn't always mean the cheapest tire. A top tier tire from Affordable Transmissions will last a long time and give Brooklyn Park drivers good performance throughout its life. Tires sold in Brooklyn Park bargain tire shops may not live up to that promise. Again, your friendly and knowledgeable Affordable Transmissions tire professional can give you options that offer the best long-term value within your immediate budget.

    Last, with a 2-wheel drive vehicle, it's to always replace both tires on an axle. Modern sensors and computer safety systems for vehicle brakes, stability and traction control need both tires to have the same amount of wear to work properly. And always put the new tires on the rear so you don't fishtail in a turn. With all-wheel drive you should replace all four tires at the same time.

    Schedule a tire inspection at Affordable Transmissions to see how much life is left in your vehicle tires and seek the help of a professional when choosing new shoes for your vehicle.

    Give us a call.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com




    Brooklyn Park Safety Systems: Tire Pressure Monitoring System

    Mar 3, 2019

    Flats, blow outs, skids and longer stopping distances can all be the result of driving around Brooklyn Park on underinflated tires. Admittedly, it's hard to tell when a radial tire is underinflated. If your vehicle manufacturer recommends 35 pounds of pressure, your vehicle tires are considered significantly underinflated at 26 pounds. The tire may not look low until it gets below 20 pounds.

    New laws require all vehicles to include a tire pressure monitor system, or TPMS. driveThis technology has been used by race car drivers for years. They are able to head off problems from underinflation by closely monitoring tire pressure on the track. It's up to your vehicle's manufacturer to determine which of many TPMS systems available they'll use to comply with the law.

    Obviously, all of this doesn't come free for Brooklyn Park drivers. Government studies have estimated the net costs. Of course, the TPMS system itself will cost something. Maintaining the system will have a cost, replacement of worn or broken parts and tire repair cost increases.

    Your safety has always been a priority at Affordable Transmissions. We want you on the road and accident free. We've traditionally provided things like tire rotations, snow tire mounting and flat fixes at a very low cost. We've been able to quickly and cheaply provide the service and pass the low cost on to you as an expression of our good will.

    Like all other Brooklyn Park service centers, here at Affordable Transmissions we've had to purchase new scanning equipment to work with the TPMS sensors and to update expensive tire change equipment to better service wheels equipped with the new monitoring systems. Our friendly and knowledgeable service technicians at Affordable Transmissions  have been thoroughly trained on many systems and new tire-changing techniques. All of this adds up to significantly increased cost to perform what was once a very inexpensive service for you.

    So when you start so see the cost of tire changes, flat repairs and rotations going up at Affordable Transmissions, please keep in mind that it's because of government mandated safety equipment. We want to keep you safely on the road – and we're committed to doing it at a fair price. This safety equipment will help you avoid the most common types of vehicle failure in Brooklyn Park, and possibly a catastrophic accident.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com

     




    Buying the Right Tires and Wheels in Brooklyn Park, MN

    Jan 20, 2019

    Everyone in Brooklyn Park, MN eventually replaces their tires, whether it's because they're worn out or they're just looking for something different. There are so many great tire choices in Brooklyn Park, it can be difficult to sort them out. Let's group the broad spectrum into several categories that will help in the selection process.

    One category is often referred to as "summer tires". Summer tires are designed to be driven on the road when temperatures are generally above 45 degrees F (7 degrees C). Their tread design is optimized for traction on dry roads around MN and they're also able to effectively displace water on rainy roads.

    So if you live where its summer all year round, these tires will work well for you. If you like maximum performance in warm weather, but still live where it gets cold and snowy, you'll want to change your summer tires for winter tires as the weather starts to change.

    There's a range of tires within the winter tire category. If you live where there's a lot of snow and ice, look for the mountain and snowflake icon that signifies a severe snow rating. If you have milder winters and still want a performance component, they make a winter tire for you as well.

    For many people, an all-season tire is the answer. You will give up some of the performance at the extreme ends of the summer tire/ winter tire spectrum, but you will find a long wearing tire that gives both good highway performance and winter traction on our Brooklyn Park, MN, roads.

    Within the all-season category, there are many choices that your tire advisor at Affordable Transmissions can help you evaluate.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com

     




    Treat Your Vehicle to Good Tires at Affordable Transmissions

    Dec 2, 2018

    When we shop for shoes, most of us know that we can get two pairs of cheap shoes or one good pair for about the same price. And since the two cheap pairs wear out in about the same time as the good pair, there really is no difference in cost. If you like having a closet full of shoes to match your moods and outfits, then cheap shoes can be what you want. But if you spend a lot of time on your feet, you probably know that cheap shoes can come with an added cost of sore feet and other foot ailments. When you add in the benefits of comfort and protection, the more expensive shoes are actually the better value.

    Buying tires at Affordable Transmissions in Brooklyn Park is a lot like buying shoes, except that Brooklyn Park vehicles don't have changeable apparel and don't need a closet full of tires to match. Vehicles spend a lot of time on their tires—all the time, in fact—so they need tires that can stand up to the job. Tires are work shoes: they have to deal with a lot of crazy MN road conditions, all while carrying the weight of a vehicle and its passengers.

    Bad tires, like cheap shoes, can also be a safety concern for Brooklyn Park drivers. Tires need good traction, and they need to be strong enough to handle the loads they carry. Vehicles that carry heavy loads or tow trailers around MN need tires with a high load rating, in the same way that you are better off on a rough MN mountain trail with sturdy hiking boots rather than flip-flops.

    The best tires on the market are called Tier 1 tires. These are high-quality tires engineered to stand up to a lot of wear while maintaining good traction. They are also the most expensive tires on the market, although prices don't vary much from brand to brand.

    Tire chain stores in Brooklyn Park often carry tires with their own brand name. These are private label tires. They are less expensive than Tier 1 tires but are still a quality product. In fact, many private label tires sold in the Brooklyn Park area are manufactured by the same companies that make Tier 1 tires. Don't hesitate to ask your Affordable Transmissions tire professional who makes their private brand.

    The cheapest tires on the MN tire market are Tier 3 tires. Most of these tires are imported from Asia or South America, and they just don't have the same standard of engineering behind them that the higher-priced tires have. When it comes to Tier 3 tires, you get what you pay for.

    At Affordable Transmissions, we sometimes express tire quality in terms of the warranty. In other words, we call a tire a “40,000 mile/65,000 km tire,” or a "60,000 mile/100,000 km tire." This refers to the number of miles/kilometers a tire will be under warranty. Tires with a higher mileage warranty are made with higher quality rubber compounds and have more tread. As you might expect, they also cost more than tires with low mileage warranties.

    Cheap tires often have no warranty at all. However, if you find yourself in a position where you need new tires and you're really strapped for cash, purchasing Tier 3 tires is better than waiting until you can afford Tier 1. It's always better to drive on new tires, even cheap ones, than driving on tires that are worn past their safety limits.

    That said, if you're driving on Tier 3 tires, it's a good idea to budget and plan to buy higher-quality tires the next go-around. Two sets of cheap tires may wear out in the same time as one set of quality tires, but the quality tires actually cost less than two sets of cheap tires. That's the great fallacy of cheap tires. In the long run, they actually cost more than good tires and come with significantly reduced performance and durability to boot. Not exactly the best value for Brooklyn Park area drivers.

    So, some good auto advice would be to always buy as much tire as you can afford. That way you'll get the most durability and performance and the most mileage out of every tire. Plus, with a better tire, there's some peace of mind that comes with knowing you won't have to purchase tires as often.

    Good vehicle care requires checking your tires occasionally for tread wear and road damage. Practicing this preventive maintenance can help you avoid flats and blowouts.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com

     




    Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Wheel Bearings

    Aug 19, 2018



    Why are wheel bearings for Brooklyn Park vehicles important? It's simple: your wheel bearings keep the wheels on your vehicle. In today's Affordable Transmissions post, we'll discuss more about wheel bearings and how you can make sure they can do their very job while you drive around Brooklyn Park, MN.

    Wheel bearings are pretty simple parts. They're made of high quality steel and are engineered to last 100,000 miles (160,000)  or more if properly cared for. The bearings do two jobs: First, they allow the wheel to freely rotate with as little friction as possible. Second, they support the weight of the vehicle. For example, if your car weighs 3,600 pounds (1600 kilogram), each wheel has to support approximately 900 pounds (400 kilograms). That's a lot of heavy lifting over those long distances.

    Even though wheel bearings are pretty straightforward, they need to be in near perfect condition to do their job for Brooklyn Park vehicles. The bearings are packed with heavy grease to lubricate and protect them. A seal keeps the grease in and water and dirt out. It's when the seal starts to leak that problems begin. The grease can become contaminated, causing the wheel bearings to overheat and ultimately fail.

    The first sign that your wheel bearings are in trouble is an unusual noise coming from a wheel. It could be a chirping, growling, rumbling or a cyclic sound. The noise could get louder or even disappear at certain speeds. Your technician at Affordable Transmissions can inspect for bearing wear by lifting the vehicle and checking for play in the wheel.

    Now some wheel bearing assemblies are factory sealed. That means that they cannot be serviced – they can only be replaced. Those that aren't sealed can be serviced on schedule at Affordable Transmissions. The bearings are removed, cleaned and inspected. If the bearings are still good, they're re-installed – if not, they're replaced. They are then packed in grease and a new seal is installed.

    If your vehicle has a factory sealed wheel bearing assembly, the entire assembly needs to be replaced when trouble arises. Unfortunately, the parts are pretty costly – but they usually last about 150,000 miles (240,000 kilometers) as long as the seals hold up.

    Now, even a good seal cannot keep out water that's exerting pressure on the seal. So if you've driven through hub-deep water, your bearings should be cleaned and repacked if they're serviceable. If you have factory sealed bearings, you just need to watch for signs of premature failure. If your wheel bearings can be serviced, your manufacturer's owner's manual will recommend an interval, usually around 30,000 miles (50,000 kilometers).

    If you have any sort of trailer, don't forget its wheel bearings. They probably need to be serviced even more frequently. This is especially true for boat trailers that are used to launch the boat by backing it into the water. These should be serviced every year, usually at the end of the season so that the bearings don't have the opportunity to rust all winter.

    So what happens to Brooklyn Park vehicles if wheel bearings fail? Well, the wheel can literally fall off the vehicle. I don't need to tell you how that could be. So check with your service advisor at Affordable Transmissions and see if your vehicle's wheel bearings can be serviced and when it's recommended. Listen for warning signs. If you've been fording streams or puddle surfing after rainstorms, be especially vigilant.

    Visit the automotive professionals at Affordable Transmissions for a wheel bearing inspection. 

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com