If you’re like most people, you probably think of auto service as nothing more than a necessary evil. But what if I told you that there are some fun facts about auto service? Believe it or not, there are several interesting things about this industry that you might not know. So without further ado, let’s take a look at five fun facts about auto service.

Almost 900 Million Oil Changes Each Year

In 2007, drivers in the United States registered over 254 million passenger vehicles. On average, Americans drive their passenger cars and trucks just over 10,000 miles per year, and they get an oil change every 3,000 miles. That translates to nearly 900 million oil changes!

Different models of cars and trucks take different amounts of oil, but most engines require 5 to 7 quarts. That means that in one year, Americans use at least 1.1 billion gallons of oil in their vehicles. Much of this oil is reused and recycled.

The First Auto Tires Were Like Bike Tires

Decades ago, drivers had to replace their tires far more frequently than we do today. These days, it’s not uncommon to get 50,000 miles or more on a single set of auto tires, but this longevity is due to the advanced technology and materials used to produce modern tires. Radial belts, synthetic and natural rubber components, and body plies, or layers, give today’s tires a long lifespan. When inventor Philip Strauss designed the first tire in 1911, the structure of tires was very different. These tires were closer in design to bicycle tires, featuring an inner tube that was inflated to provide a firm base for the outer rubber shell.

Windshield Wipers Were Invented by a Woman

You can thank Mary Anderson, who invented windshield wipers in 1903. Anderson was in New York City and noticed that the streetcar driver had to keep his window open in a sleet storm to reach his arm out of the car and manually clean his windshield with a squeegee. Anderson received a patent for the windshield wiper, but she was unable to sell the invention to automakers, who claimed that the device had no commercial value. After Anderson’s patent expired in 1920, windshield wipers became a standard feature on automobiles. Today, changing windshield wipers is an important part of automotive maintenance. Wiper blades come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, and some are even heated to help keep your windshield clean in icy conditions.

Your Car Uses Six Primary Fluids

Think you can get away with just changing your oil? Think again! Believe it or not, your car uses six different fluids:

  • Motor oil
  • Coolant
  • Power steering fluid
  • Brake fluid
  • Transmission fluid
  • Windshield washer fluid

It’s important to replenish and change these fluids according to the car’s maintenance schedule, and it’s also imperative that you properly dispose of the old fluids. Many of these substances are hazardous to people and animals.

Antilock Brakes Were Invented Over 50 Years Ago

Even though they are a fairly recent safety feature on most passenger cars, anti-lock brakes have actually been around for half a century. The British company, Road Research Laboratories, created an anti-skid braking system in 1958. The system, called “Maxaret,” was used in production in 1966 on the Jensen FF Sports Sedan.

Initially, Maxaret and other anti-lock braking systems were simply too expensive for automakers, but advances in computerized braking now make it possible to get anti-lock brakes on almost any new car.

Older Cars Hummed With A Tune-Up

If you drove an older car, you might remember the telltale signs that it was time for a tune-up. The engine would start to sound rough, and the car would lose power and efficiency. A tune-up consisted of adjusting the carburetor, replacing the spark plugs and wires, and checking the distributor cap and rotor.

Today, most cars don’t need a tune-up until they reach 100,000 miles or more. This is due to advances in engine design and technology. Many newer cars have computer-controlled ignition and fuel systems that adjust themselves as needed. However, it’s still important to check your car’s maintenance schedule and take it in for service when recommended.

Cars Run On Computers

Not too long ago, cars had simple mechanical systems that were controlled by vacuum lines and little else. Today, however, cars are full of computers. In fact, it’s estimated that the average car has as many as 100 million lines of code running its various systems!

While this might sound scary, it’s actually a good thing. Computers can do things like regulate fuel mixture, adjust timing, and activate the anti-lock brakes much faster than people can. They can also store error codes that can help mechanics diagnose problems more quickly.

Of course, computers are not perfect, and they can sometimes malfunction. That’s why it’s important to take your car in for regular maintenance and have the computer system checked whenever you have an issue.

Car Tires Are Made Of Synthetic Rubber

Did you know that car tires are made of synthetic rubber? This might not seem like a big deal, but it’s actually a pretty amazing feat of engineering.

Natural rubber comes from trees, and it has a number of drawbacks. It’s hard to produce in large quantities, it degrades quickly in sunlight, and it’s susceptible to rot and pests. Synthetic rubber, on the other hand, is much more durable and can be made in a laboratory.

The first synthetic rubber was invented in 1909 by German chemist Fritz Hoffmann. Today, most car tires are made of a synthetic rubber called styrene-butadiene rubber. This type of rubber is resistant to heat, UV light, and ozone, making it ideal for use in tires.

These are just a few of the interesting facts about auto service and maintenance. Next time you’re at the mechanic, be sure to ask about some of the other fascinating things they know about cars!

Are You Looking for an Independent Auto Service Shop You Can Trust?

If you’re considering making a change to an independent auto repair mechanic trusted by thousands of happy customers, look no further than Autotech Blackhawk. Why? We differ from other automotive repair shops because we are a relationship shop. This means that the more of your car repair needs we support you with, the better able we are to customize our recommendations based on your driving habits and needs. Whether you want to keep the daily driver in ‘good enough’ condition, style your new car so that it’s customized just for you, maintain your favorite car in ‘like new’ condition, or even train your whole family to be more knowledgeable about cars – we partner with you to ensure that your cars meet your needs. We also offer an industry-leading 3-Year/36,000-mile warranty, so we only use Original Equipment and manufacturer-recommended products. Contact us now to book your no-contact, friendly appointment! We truly value your trust and your business, so thank you for staying local with your auto repair needs.

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