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Learning When to Maintenance Differentials Understanding how your car works is an important step to properly maintaining your vehicle. You can always ask a mechanic about what needs to get done and when. The only problem is that some customers are often wary of any recommendation that comes from the mechanic (fearing that they’re getting scammed into a bigger purchase). The wariness comes from a lack of knowledge on the matter. For that reason, it’s important to understand your car: even something as simple as your differentials. That way you can make informed decisions on your vehicle maintenance when questions come up.

Understanding What Exactly You Need Done If you don’t know what to expect you (1) run the risk of a scam, or (2) run the risk of breaking an important part of your vehicle because you didn’t listen. Considering that financial obligations such as your auto insurance in Magnolia, TX are cheaper when your car makes it more than 5-8 years, its best that you know what to maintain and when. This post will help you understand the differentials of your vehicle so you can be just that much more educated on the matter. Most vehicles have a set of front and rear differentials. The differentials are what allow the car to turn. Although the steering wheel does the work of pointing the vehicle in the right direction, the differentials are what make the turn possible. Each set of differentials (they come in pairs: the right and left connected by the axel) is responsible for the adjustment of tire rotation speed when on a turn. Depending on how fast you take a curve, the computer will calculate how much it needs to adjust the outside and inside tire speeds to make it possible. The inner tire needs to be slowed down while the outer tire needs to be sped up. They are adjusted at the same rate in a lot of cases, i.e. for every mph the outer tire is sped up the inner tire is slowed down.

A Helpful Analogy To understand why this works, think about what it takes to turn a line of a marching militia. The military is strict on the necessity for straight horizontal lines of soldiers.


There is no reason why any individual should break that line. When making a right turn, the only way to keep the line straight is for the innermost soldier to shorten his or her stride and for the outermost one to lengthen his or hers. Only the soldier in the middle is allowed to keep the standard stride. Everyone else has to adjust according to what side of the curve they are on (inner or outer). Wheels connected by an axel work much the same way. The inner wheel must be adjusted to a slower rate as speed so it doesn’t get ahead of the outer wheel (that has to cover a longer distance). In the same way the outer wheel has to be adjusted to cover a longer distance in a shorter amount of time so as not to fall behind the inner wheel. When this is done correctly, the car turns at a standard speed. The differentials are operated by a computer, but operate thanks to oil. Like your engine, that oil can go bad or leak. For that reason, you should maintenance your differential oil according to the factory recommendations given for your vehicle. If you don’t, you run the risk of your wheels seizing up, stopping you dead in your tracks. Your differentials are essential for the normal operation of your car. When you know the proper maintenance schedule of your differentials (determined in large part by your factory recommendation settings) you won’t be caught off guard thinking it’s a scam when it comes time to get them taken care of. You won’t be scammed out of your money and your car won’t break down prematurely (meaning your Magnolia, TX auto insurance will be happy as well as your wallet). The less you have problems with your vehicle, the better shape your car will be in for years to come, and the better your rates for auto insurance in Magnolia, TX will drop over time. Photo Credit: Xabier M, Brake-O-Rama

Learning When to Maintenance Differentials  

Understanding how your car works is an important step to properly maintaining your vehicle. You can always ask a mechanic about what needs t...

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