#tipthursday What is wheel alignment and should I get it done?

Wheel alignment (also known as tracking) ensures that your wheels are sitting at the correct angles as per the manufacturer’s specifications for your vehicle. Over time, general use and wear & tear of your vehicle mean your wheels can become misaligned and inefficient. Every make & model has a slightly different alignment set up with manufacturers recommendeing that alignment is carried out every 8000 miles or every other year.


A sign of poor alignment is uneven tyre wear that can impact the handling, maintenance costs and most importantly, vehicle safety. Pulling to one side while driving is also another warning sign to look out for.

We use a handly bit of kit called a Laser Wheel Alignment Gauge which uses lasers to show us how straight your wheels are sitting.

Benefits of having properly aligned wheels are,

  • reduced tyre wear (meaning they’ll be more efficient and need replacing less often)
  • a smoother and safer drive
  • reduced fuel consumption (as the vehicle doesn’t have to work as hard to power forward)

If you would like us to check your wheel alignment please don’t hesitate to get in touch by calling the office or sending an email.

Maitland Motors: DPF Doctor

We have big and exciting news to share with you all, Maitland Motors have joined forces with leading industry experts, The DPF Doctor. This means that we will soon be a DPF cleaning and repair specialists (after a some training over the coming weeks). This will be especially useful knowledge and product base for customers who drive diesel vehicles fitted with a DPF (Diesel Particulate Filter).

A DPF helps to lower emissions by capturing and storing exhaust soot that would otherwise be released into the atmosphere. Legislation passed in 2009 made DPFs on diesel vehicles mandatory to help lower CO2 emissions. If your DPF is causing issues it may need further investigation, which is where the expertise from The DPF Doctor can save you time on the ramp and costly DPF repairs.

The DPF Doctor has more info on their own website about what we will be able to do when it comes to DPFs and have some great reviews from customers who have had issues resolved using their tried and tested specialist knowledge. Well known in the industry, we are very much looking forward to working with them and taking the garage into a more specialists area of vehicle repair and maintenance.

DPF Cleaning Kit

If you have any questions or would like to know more, just leave a comment below, call our office or send us an email.

July Training for Maitland Motors

Maitland Motors have been back in the classroom gaining essential vehicle maintenance knowledge. We are passionate about training, development and staying up to date with the ever-changing automotive industry. What does this mean for you and your vehicle? Less time spent on the ramp diagnosing faults/ issues, expert knowledge and advice for newer makes and models and fully trained, knowledgable technicians working on your car. 

Pico Scope – Essential Training

Ross and Dale now understand the essential functions of the Picoscope. They can capture, save and analyse waveforms, as well as understand how to use these techniques during diagnosis. Picoscopes are a brilliant bit of kit which can help our technicians to identify small deviations on sensors signals, saved as fault codes. Knowing what these signals mean, helps to pinpoint where the issues are coming from quickly and efficiently.

Pico Scope – Advanced Training

Our technicians know how and when to apply advanced Pico Scope functions. They can use advanced tests and techniques for diagnostic scenarios where failures are intermittent or no fault codes are present. Additionally, the technicians will know how to capture and analyse waveforms using the Pico pressure transducer. Again, the guys now have the essential knowledge to get to the root of more complicated, in-depth issues. 

Ross and Dale with the trainer and other students.

Ross is in his element, learning about in-depth waveforms.

Bosch Introduction to Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS)

This course gave Ross and Dale a better understanding of the interconnectivity of modern safety systems and driver aids. With an overview of the various ADAS sensors and their application, they also learned about the KTS to carry out a comprehensive vehicle search of ADAS systems. They can use test equipment required for ADAS service tasks alongside the setup and calibration process of a modern ADAS sensor. 

Well done guys, improvements can already be seen in the workshop and getting to the route cause of faults and repairs with your expert knowledge. If you have any questions or would like to know more how our trianing can help you, call our office, DM us or email us.

#tipthursday Don’t forget to book your service

Restrictions are easing, is your vehicle road ready?

Maitland Motors’ #tipthursday for this week: Don’t forget to book your service.

We recommend serving your car at least once a year depending on mileage, age and driving conditions. After the past year, most of our vehicles have probably been stuck parked up or on driveways and, understandably, booking in for a service just hasn’t been a priority. With restrictions easing, a service will prepare your vehicle for the roads again, helping to keep you safe, prolong lifespan of our vehicle, and prevent further more costly repairs that lack of maintenance often cause. Pop on over to a recent post about the importance of servicing your vehicle here for more details.

If you have any questions or would like to know more, leave a comment below, email or call us in the office.

#tipthursday Follow Our Basic Vehicle Maintenance Schedule

Follow our basic vehicle maintenance to help get the best from your car.

Here at Maitland Motors we believe that maintaining your car is the most effective way to get the most from it. Following our basic maintenance schedule will to help keep your car preforming at its best and more importantly, safe on roads.

Your Basic Car Maintenance Schedule by Maitland Motors

Full Service – 6 months prior MOT (This will depend on when you last had a full service, it may just need an interim. We can check beforehand and advise on the appropriate service required.)

Free Vehicle Health Check – 3 months prior MOT

Pre-MOT 1 month before MOT

MOT (sign up to our reminder text service)

We recommend following this as a minimum depending on your mileage and how you drive. Most car manuals will have details of your make/model’s service schedule as per the manufacture’s recommendations.

If you have any questions or would like to book in for a Service, Free Vehicle Health Check, Pre-MOT or MOT then call us in the office, email us or leave a comment below.

Maitland Motors, Here to Help

How we can help making maintaining your car easier

We understand here at Maitland Motors, that looking after your car can be an added hassle and stress. That’s why we’ve put in place a few processes to help make maintaining your car that little bit easier.

Payment Assist. Payment Assist is a easy way to spread the cost for your vehicle repair & maintenance bill. Payment is split over 4 monthly payments interest and fee free making any larger or unexpected repair bills a bit more manageable. For more details we have a recent post here. (T&Cs apply. Please let us know in advance of any works being carried out that you plan to pay via Payment Assist so we can get the process in place in time for collecting your car.)

Payment Assist with Maitland Motors
Spread the cost of your repair and maintenance bills with Payment Assist .

Courtesy Car. Sometimes its just not possible to be without your car what with work or school run commitments, especially if your car is in for a few days on big or unexpected repairs. Hiring our courtesy car can help at just £10 a day. (T&Cs apply, please ask for more details.)

Free Vehicle Health Check. Been a while since your car last saw a mechanic? Book in for a Free Vehicle Health Check where we’ll visually inspect the condition of your car, giving you peace of mind that its safe or making you aware of any repairs or issues.

A Free Vehicle Health Check will give you a no obligation overview of your car.

Pick Up & Drop Off Service. We offer a limited Pick Up and Drop Off Service where we come collect your vehicle from your home or place of work in the morning for repairs or services in the workshop, then drop it back with you the evening works have been completed. Saving you having to arrange getting your car to us and getting home again. (Due to the pandemic we unfortunately don’t have a waiting area for customers.)

Good Quality OE Parts and Oil. We believe prevention is better that cure here at Maitland Motors, and a big part of that is using good quality parts and oil. They will last you longer, perform better and often come with good guarantees, giving you better value for money. After years or experience in the trade, we use trusted brands such as Mann Filters, Pagid brakes, Varta Batteries and Forte engine treatments. Not to forget we are Pagid/IMI Professional Braking Specialist.

Proud to fit Pagid here at Maitland Motors
Pagid brakes come with a 25 months/ 25 thousand mile guarantee which many other manufactures don’t.

MOT Text Reminder. MOTs can be easy to forget, especially since the DVLA stopped sending reminders. Sign up to our text reminder service where we’ll remind you to get booked in and avoid missing your due date. We only need your reg and mobile number to set this up.

We hope that your experience here at Maitland Motors is as smooth and hassle free as possible but if there is anything further you feel we could put in place, then please just let us know. Customer feedback is really useful in helping us grow and improve our service. If you’d like to book in and use any of the services above, call our office, email us or leave a message below.

#tipthursday Book in for a Free Vehicle Health Check

With restrictions easing again, hopefully we’ll all be able to get out and about a bit more soon. Make sure your car is ready for venturing further a field by booking in for a Free Vehicle Health Chick.

Most cars probably haven’t moved much over the past few months/year which can mean seized parts, dead batteries or flat tyres. At a Vehicle Health Check we’ll get your car up on the ramp to visually check all areas of your car, giving you a better of its condition. Areas inc,

brakes,
levels,
tyres,
horn,
wipers & washers,
seat belts,
lights,
power steering,
battery,
antifreeze,
cooling system,
condition of the exhaust,
suspension,
& all safety components of your car.

After checks have been carried out we can advise you of the condition of your car and if there’s anything that is a cause concern. There is no obligation to have any further works carried out but its always good to be aware of any possible repairs that may need addressing sooner rather than later. Especially if your MOT is due or more importantly, they cause any safety concerns. We can arrange a quote for any works and take it from there.

Give yourself piece of mind that your car is ready for the roads again. For more information or to book in, call the office, send us an email or leave a comment below.

Maitland Motor’s Top 5 Blog Posts

Our blog is one year old!! To celebrate, we thought it would be fun to look back and see which of our posts you liked the best. Here are our top 5 blog posts from the last year…

  1. #tipthursday – Check you Tyre Pressure Regularly. Why keeping your tyres pumped up to manufactures’ recommended PSI is important.
  2. #tipthursday – Check your Windows and Wipers Regularly. One we can all do at home, why keeping an eye on your windows and wipers will help staying safe on the roads.
  3. When should you visit Maitland Motors? A few scenarios when it would be beneficial to book your car in and get in checked.
  4. My MOT was due during the lockdown extension. What now? Advise on what to do if your MOT was due during lockdown 1 and was extended.
  5. Getting the best from your Suspension. How best to look after your suspension.

We hope you enjoy reading our blog and find it as a source of advice, hints and tips and more importantly an insight to behind the scenes of our garage. Being open and honest with our customers is very important to us and we feel that the more you know about car care and maintenance the better for every car that comes to us. That being said, there is always room for improvement, so is there anything you’d like to see more or less of on the blog? Do you have any car related questions that we could turn into a post? We’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas, just leave them in the comments below or send us an email.

Thanks to all our readers and customers who have taken the time to read our blog over the past year.

Looking after your car in Lockdown

With most car owners working from home or home-schooling at the moment, their car is most probably sitting on the drive the most of the time just now. This is great for saving on fuel costs and environmental factors, however an unused car can cause have some issues when you return to more regular driving.

Here are a few tips to help maintain your car during lockdown and in a safe condition to dive in case of emergencies.

  • Start your car at least once a week and let it run for 10 – 15 mins. This will help keep your battery charged. (Turning the air con on while you do this will help keep air flowing freely.)
  • Keep an eye on tyres going flat; sitting too long in the same position can affect your tyres. If you notice a slow puncture, pump your tyres back to the manufacture’s recommended PSI. (More on this on a previous post here.)
  • Beware of rust! Brakes, valves and cylinders can all become rusty without use which will effect their effectiveness . A quick once around the block every week will help keep parts freed off of rust. Listen out for any knocks, bangs, squeaks or changes in performance. If you hear anything or notice any changes, they could be an indicator that your car may need further TLC from a professional, before it escalates into a bigger, more serious problem for your car.

We also have more info on checks you can do at home yourself here. These checks can help keep your car in a good, driveable condition.

Unlike lockdown 1, there are no MOT extensions, so if yours is due in the coming weeks or months you will still be required by law to have this carried out. Doing so will help keep you safe and legal in your car, and also means that when restrictions are lifted again your car will be ready. If you are driving without an MOT you could face some hefty fines and more worryingly driving an unsafe car.

If you have any questions or concerns about your car during lockdown, then don’t hesitate to get in touch and we can get you booked in for a Free Vehicle Health Check.

Getting the best from your Suspension

Your suspension system works to keep you on the road and ensure your car handles many different driving conditions and surfaces safely. The suspension includes many individual parts of your car, so nipping any potential issues in the bud and keeping up with maintenance will help prolong your suspension and save on very costly repairs.

Parts of your suspension system include – Shock Absorbers, Springs, Wishbones, Antiroll Bar, Mounts & Bushes.

Things to keep in mind to help prolong your suspension:

  • avoiding pot holes and bumping up curbs,
  • taking speedbumps slowly,
  • being aware of the condition of the road,
  • ensuring your tyres are at the correct pressure which will lessen the impact on your suspension,
  • fitting good quality parts helps massively. Outlasting cheaper ones and providing a better handling and a more comfortable drive,
  • ensuring your wheel alignment it set up properly,
  • following your make and model’s maintenance schedule and general care of your car (eg yearly service, pre-mot, getting any knocks or banging noises checked asap.)
Good quality parts will last longer so you’ll get more value for your money.

If your car’s suspension is not operating to its best then you’ll find your car may handle the road poorly, pull to one side, is sitting low, is making noises or your tyres are wearing unevenly. If you have any concerns we’d recommend booking in with a technician asap: ignoring minor repairs can soon turn into large costly ones where you could be without your car for some time, and more worryingly, driving an unsafe car. Issues with your suspension is also a MOT fail.

A very broken spring compared to a new one. Getting nocks & bangs checked will help prevent such damage from occurring.

If you have any concerns about your suspension then leave a comment below or call the office. We offer a Free Vehicle Health Check where we will check all areas of your suspension and give you a full report of the condition of your car.