Most of us don’t know that a car can heat up to 20 degrees in less than 10 minutes. If it is hot and the temperature is around 40 degrees outside your car can reach twice that temperature when closed & regardless to say such high temperature is harmful for you.  What we do not realise is even when we are driving in our air conditioned cars if we do not regularly check them they can be dangerous to our health.


Tips for optimum use of Car Air-conditioning;

Turn on Air conditioning once the car starts moving: because the compressor will run faster when the engine is running fast, you will just be wasting your gas by letting the car cool before you actually go.


Keep the Temperature low: Keeping the car air condition at low temperature dries the air out lesser than on higher temperature and also saves you some fuel. If you set the air conditioning at a high temperature that will reheat the air hence more fuel burnt.


Keep your car filter Clean: airflow is directly affected by a dirty air filter and the airflow you get will not be optimum. Make sure to check the air filters regularly


Regularly go for Car Service: Your car just like your house needs your attention and care and if you know how to service your air conditioning at home that’s well and good and if you don’t than try to take your car in for service every once in a while. Do not wait for a year before you back to the garage only to find out that a small problem has now cost you replacement of the entire cooling system.


Things not to do with your car Air conditioning system:

Fresh air vent should be closed when switching on the Air conditioner, if you don’t that will allow hot air from outside of the car to mix with the cool air and reduce cooling as a result.


Do not operate the air conditioning with low refrigerant gas as that will lead to the premature failure of the car compressor.


If you prefer to service your car at home, make sure you have proper vacuuming for the system before recharging the car air conditioner refrigerant, improper vacuuming will lead to loss of cooling.

Tips For Driving In The Rain

With this much anticipated spring weather comes the inevitable buckets of rain Ottawa experiences every year. Spring time in Canada is notorious for having unpredictable weather. A snow storm on Tuesday, thunder and lightning on Wednesday and shorts and sandal weather by the weekend. Though the calming pitter-patter of rain is a nice change from the howling winds of winter, it can make it difficult to drive. Like any type of stormy weather, it’s important to take caution when driving. Here are some helpful tips for driving in the rain.

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Spring Car Maintenance

The brunt of winter is over and the calendar officially tells us it’s spring. The winter coats and snow pants are being tucked away and light jackets and rain boots are coming out to play. While you and your family are getting ready for spring it’s the perfect time to schedule your car for a seasonal maintenance check-up. Not sure where to start? Here are some frequently asked questions about spring car maintenance and where to start.

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Eight Parking Lot Etiquette Tips You Should Follow

Parking Lot Etiquette

Parking lots can sometimes be described as concrete jungles. The mess of cars and people are reminiscent to wild animals in a stampede to get wherever they’re going. In the midst of chaos comes inattentive and carefree acts that cause a frenzy of emotions all while you just want to park your car and get on with your day. Below you’ll find eight parking lot etiquette tips that will help you get in and out scratch-free with some leftover sanity.


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Do I Need All Wheel Drive For Winter?

Winter All Wheel Drive

With winter slowly creeping in once again, the same old question has once again begun to surface, do I need all wheel drive to survive the winter? Gary’s is here to figure out if driving two extra wheels is worth it for the winter. We’ll also look at the differences between all wheel drive and 4 wheel drive and which one can perform the best in the snow and ice.

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Wheel Alignments – A Must Have Service For Summer

Wheel AlignmentBefore we get started it’s important to note that with the increases in driving done over the summer, ALL services are must haves for both safety and economy. A car that is ready to tackle anything the open road can throw at it is much easier to maintain and will save you more in the long run.

A wheel alignment is so important because not only can improperly aligned wheels be racking up the costs for you, they can also put you in danger. With some advice and service from Gary’s Automotive, summer driving can be a breeze.


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Summer Vehicle Safety

summer vehicle safetySchools almost out, and the season of long weekends and road trips is upon us. We’ve already covered how to stock your car, and where to go, so now we need to think of how to do that safely. Statistically, you are more likely to be involved in a car accident in the summer than in the winter, due to more drivers on the road and greater speeds. With some simple advice, staying safe on the roads can go a long way to making sure that your summer is enjoyable.

What To Remember For Summer Vehicle Safety

Ottawa is, to put it nicely, “blessed with vivid seasons”, meaning the summers are sticky hot and the winters are biting cold. The main reason that summer can be dangerous is because of the increase in drivers and increased speed. In winter, very few people are planning long road trips at highway speeds. That’s why one of the most crucial things to remember is to watch your speed and distractions. This is good advice for any time of year, but is easy to forget come the summer. The two big weather conditions you’ll see come summer are +40° temperatures and heavy rains. Both come with their own unique driving conditions.

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Fighting A Traffic Ticket

dealing with a traffic ticketWhile we don’t doubt that all the drivers reading the Gary’s Automotive blog are skilled experts, there will come a time when you slip up, and someone will notice. Getting a traffic ticket can be a huge burden, both to your finances and to your record. Gary’s Automotive is here to help ensure that you are armed with the knowledge it takes to get through the process of a fighting traffic ticket, either by challenging it or by paying it.

Fight or Flight

If you choose to simply pay your ticket, then the process will be explained to you. Many people think that paying a simple traffic ticket is the more responsible choice, since it keeps the already over worked court systems free from dealing with minor charges, and it allows you to take responsibility for your actions. This may be the case, but some would also argue that many infractions and fines are simply put in place to be a revenue stream for the Government. In many cases, the most common piece of advice is to fight the ticket no matter what. There are a number of ways this is possible. Gary’s is here to help you separate fact from fiction in order to help you know your rights as a citizen.

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Summer Road Trip: Travel Tips & More

summer road trip


Summer is close to coming to an end which means it’s time to get out on the open road and have some fun. One of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to experience Canada and beyond is by planning a summer road trip. We’ve covered what you should keep in your car for winter, now let’s take a look at some tips for driving during the summer months and some great places to visit in the Ottawa area.

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Sharing Ottawa’s Roads

Sharing Ottawa's roads mapWhen the first roads were built, it was impossible to imagine the types of traffic that would be on them today. From dirt footpaths to 8 lane superhighways, roads have evolved to take on modern traffic with efficiency and speed. In recent years, a push has been made to allow an alternative mode of transit to cars, such as walking or bicycling. This has created a fierce divide between cyclists and motorists, with each claiming that the other isn’t following the rules of the road. As you can see by this map of Ottawa showing the roads vs the bike lanes and paths, there’s going to be plenty of overlap where drivers and cyclists will share the road. Gary’s Automotive is here to help both sides know the proper rules of the road so everyone can get out and enjoy what this city has to offer.



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What It’s Like To (Safely) Total A Car

crashed malibuHave you ever been cleaning around the house, and almost hit your head on a shelf? Almost poked your eye on plant or something else sticking out?  For a few seconds after the fact, you smile and think “boy that was close” and “I almost hit my little finger in the door, I SHOULDN’T BE ALIVE!”. Every day, people get in car accidents. Some lose a bumper or some paint, some lose much more. I was fortunate enough to experience the former, although only by inches.



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Top Automotive Upgrades

Multi-ExhaustWhen you own a car, you want it to perform it’s very best. Gary’s is here to help provide regular service and repairs on your vehicle, but also to provide helpful mechanic advice on the top automotive upgrades for your car. If you’re looking to get the most out of your vehicle, then you’ve come to the right place!

Upgrading Your Engine

If you want to really get the most out of upgrades, you’ll have to start with the engine. There are a number of ways to really get the most out of what’s under your hood, starting with increasing the power:

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What To Do After A Car Accident

What To Do After A Car AccidentWith the temperatures slowly rising and the snow gradually starting to melt, we begin to get out on the road more. Even the most careful drivers may at some point find themselves in an accident, and knowing what to do after a car accident is crucial for saving time, effort, and money. With a little advice, you can get through a tough day with ease.

You’re probably thinking, if the roads are getting nicer, why worry about accidents now? Research has shown that more accidents occur when the weather is nice. During or after a heavy snowfall, people are more likely to avoid driving. Driving under adverse conditions, people tend to lower their speed and drive more cautiously. In nice weather, people can get distracted easier and may speed more. This can lead to more accidents. Accidents can happen anywhere at any time, so it’s good to be prepared.

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Car Facts Episode 4 – Everyday Driving Skills

everyday driving skillsIf you’ve been following our Car Facts series so far, then you’ve got a basic idea of what’s going on in both your own vehicle as well as vehicle extremes from around the world. You’ve also become a savvy shopper and know when to book vehicle service. All of this information is for nothing if you aren’t confident in your driving abilities. There are a few everyday driving skills that a large amount of people don’t have, like driving a manual transmission or even changing a tire. Gary’s Automotive is here to share some basic everyday driving skills and to help keep you safe out on the road.

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Buying A Used Car In Ottawa

Buying A Used Car In Ottawa


After years of expert service and maintenance from Gary’s Automotive, your old car has finally kicked the bucket. You’ve counted on us over the years, now Gary’s is here with some helpful advice on buying a used car in Ottawa. Should you buy used or should you buy new? What should you look for when buying used? Lets get started.

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Car Care Myths

car care myths true or false signIn the world of automotive care, information can often be handed down throughout generations, or spread through poorly quoted sources. It’s no surprise then, that any person seeking quality automotive service can come across plenty of car care myths. Not only are there a number of myths out there, but in many cases the “actual facts” are just as bad as the myths they are replacing. At Gary’s Automotive, We’ll get to the bottom of what myths are true, what myths are false, and what you really need to know.


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Stick To Your Car Resolutions!

car resolutions 2015Sticking To Your Car Resolutions?

Every year, people around the world gather to count down the start of a new year. With that, people vow to make big, often jarring, lifestyle changes for the better. Things like getting into better shape, eating healthier, or saving money are consistently at the top of peoples lists. For most people the first two weeks of January are their healthiest weeks of the year. Now that the month is coming to an end, many people have abandoned their new routines and sunk back into old habits. While Gary’s Automotive can’t help you put down the pizza and go for a run, we can help you stick to any car resolutions you may have, such as saving money, becoming more informed, or becoming a better driver.

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Car Facts Episode 2 – Shopping For Vehicle Wear Parts

Nall vehicle wear partso one likes sinking more money than they need to into their car. Vehicles have so many moving parts that there’s simply no way all of them could last forever. That’s why the concept of vehicle wear parts was introduced. Vehicle wear parts are components that are able to be replaced, as their main function has them deteriorate over time. Oil becoming dirty or brake pads wearing down are example of vehicle wear parts that need to be replaced in time. There are a lot of different options out there for these parts, so Gary’s is here to help make sense of it all.

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Car Facts Episode 1 – Learning Car Engines

Learning car engines subaru bayThere are some people out there who can simply hear an engine rev and tell you the make, model, and even year of the car producing that sound. While you may have some knowledge of vehicles, chances are if you’re reading a garage’s blog, you might not have the same knowledge as some gearheads out there. That’s not a bad thing! Gary’s is here not only for expert service, but for quality help as well. Here we’ll take a look at the common ways people talk about learning car engines, and how you can use these terms in your day to day life.


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Ottawa Car Maintenance – Christmas Special!

Ottawa Car MaintenanceAt Gary’s, we’ve already covered Ottawa car maintenance advice on the sounds and symptoms your car can make. While some maintenance is best left to the pros, there is some that can be done at home. What better time of year to outfit the budding gear head in your home than the season of shopping frantically at the last minute generous giving. Here you’ll find some great tips and advice for budget friendly items they wouldn’t mind unwrapping this year!



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Ottawa Vehicle Repairs – When Is It Time?

Ottawa Vehicle Repairs MechanicYour Source For Ottawa Vehicle Repairs

A few weeks ago, we told you what could be triggering your check engine light. However, there are numerous other issues that can arise with owning a vehicle. Some, if not most, of these other issues don’t come with a light to indicate a problem. You already know that Gary’s is the top choice for Ottawa vehicle repairs, and with this handy guide you’ll know exactly whats wrong with your car, and when to get service!


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Check Engine Light Symptoms – Know What’s Wrong


The check engine light can be vague and at times not very helpful. From major engine issues to something as simple as forgetting to tighten the gas cap, Gary’s is here to help you determine what the check engine light can mean when it lights up your dashboard.

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Winters Effect On Your Car – Tis The Season

winter effect on your car

The Cold Shoulder – Winters Effect On Your Car

It’s begun. Our coats are getting thicker, our boots warmer, and rakes are giving way to shovels. Winter is here. There may be a few odd days of warm weather left, but it’s fairly safe to assume its time to settle in for the blowing snow and freezing temperatures. If you’ve been following us so far, you’ll be plenty prepared. Why do we prepare? Other than the obvious road hazards, what is winters effect on your car? This week we’ll look at how Canada’s most depressing favourite season affects your car, and what you can do about it.

Salt is the only thing you have to worry about. Other than that, driving in winter is really no different than in summer. You can even continue to put the top down on your convertible. This is some bad advice, and is just plain wrong. Winters effect on your car is vast, and very different than in summer. Lets start with the obvious:

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Winter Emergency Kit – Being prepared can save your life!

winter emergency kitMaking A Winter Emergency Kit

A patch of black ice can come out of nowhere, and in the middle of a snowstorm you could be stranded for hours before towing or emergency service can get to you. Winter or not, it is a good idea to have an emergency kit in your vehicle that you can access in a time of need.




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Winter Driving | Don’t Lose Your Cool

Conquering Winter DrivingWinter Driving – Canada’s Second National Sport

We all know what’s coming. Winter driving. The leaves are changing and the warm summer breeze has given way to a crisp, cool wind. It was Ben Franklin who once said “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes”. Clearly old Ben never spent any time north of the 49th, because he’d know something else is certain – Canadian winters are cold. Canadian winters are harsh. Canadian winters are some of the most adverse conditions your vehicle can face.


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