You love everything about your luxury car; the look, the feel, the performance – everything. Driving it is a joy every day. Cars are like everything else, though, and they require maintenance. As you know, your car was expensive to buy and is also expensive to own, as foreign auto repair is pricey. Regular maintenance must not be ignored, but can you overlook other things? Are there issues you can ignore, at least for awhile, that will not affect the performance or life of your vehicle? Certainly. However, here a few sounds you should not ignore:
Hissing is generally the sound of a leak. Leaks, say in the vacuum line or cooling system, will affect fuel economy and drivability, so get the hissing sound checked.
Squealing, Scraping, or Grinding When Braking
Brakes really should not make any noise, so when braking makes a sound, it is usually a sign of a problem. A little squealing may mean that you have dirt in the system somewhere, or it could indicate wear. If the sound moves to scraping or grinding, you are hearing the sound of metal on metal and you can be sure the brakes pads are worn and need to be replaced. Bad brakes are never a good thing, so don’t ignore brake sounds.
A whining sound from your car can indicate excessive differential or transmission wear, both of which, if unchecked, can make your car undrivable. (Whining might also be from children in the back; if that’s the case, feel free to ignore it.)
Cars are made of thousands of pieces and sometimes these pieces come loose. If you hear a rattling sound inside your car, the chances are good that the loose piece is not critical to the function of the vehicle. But, if you hear a rattle coming from underneath the car, that is a different story. The loose part may be an important one, or, it might damage critical parts if it eventually dislodges completely. Either way, don’t ignore rattling from under the car.
Your car includes several systems run by belts. A flapping sound from inside your engine compartment indicates a broken or disintegrating belt, or maybe even that something is interfering with the normal function of the belt. When belts break, they can damage other parts of the car as well, so make certain to address any flapping sounds with your mechanic.
Cars make lots of sounds. The hum of the engine is likely one of the reasons you love your car. When you hear a sound that is out of the ordinary, take note as it could be the sign of a problem. Repairs are expensive, but not nearly as expensive as replacing the entire car. When in doubt, consult your trusted foreign auto repair mechanic.