Archive for the ‘automotive repair’ Category

Pot Holes Got You Down?

Posted: 2018-10-04 by Craig Senior in automotive repair

The summer of 2018 in Ottawa saw us sinking in an infinite ocean of potholes, due to a past harsh winter during which we experienced 42 freeze and thaw cycles between November 2017 and February 2018. If you look to receive money from the city of Ottawa for damage to your vehicle, keep in mind that they payout for only about 10% of claims.


If you have hit a pothole and your tires and rims are undamaged, it is still possible that your wheels have gone out of alignment. An inspection will reveal any misalignment and a realignment could save you from premature tire wear, or other damage to your vehicle.

Some signs your wheels are out of alignment:

  • Vehicle pulls to one side
  • Premature or uneven tire wear
  • Steering wheel is to one side when driving straight
  • Vibration while driving
  • Squealing tires.

On 2016-07-01, the Ontario Ministry of Transport (MTO) is changing the requirements for used vehicle safety inspections for vehicles to pass and be considered roadworthy. We are not increasing our price to perform safety inspections, but the changes will likely increase the cost of associated repairs and make for safer driving. The new inspection standard involves new or more specific requirements in the following areas:


  • structural integrity of cab, cargo or passenger body, frame or sub-frame, tailgate, bumper, seats and seat belts
  • inspect equipment, latches, handles, door openers, hinges and other devices attached to the vehicle
  • inspect the entire area of the windshield swept by both wipers
  • window tint
  • occupant protection systems required by federal law must now be tested via the vehicle diagnostic lamp
  • system check including originally equipped air bags, seatbelt pre-tensioners, and side air bag curtains
  • all equipment must be present, in good working condition and free of visible hazard.



  • measure dimensions of brake components including drum, rotor and brake lining
  • clearer distinctions among types of brake systems. (e.g. vacuum assist, hydraulic assist, air assist)
  • Anti-lock Brake System (ABS)
  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC) systems, required for light duty vehicles manufactured on or after 2011-09-01, must function as designed.

Instruments and Auxiliary Equipment

  • horn switch
  • speedometer, odometer
  • windshield wiper
  • limits on coolant leaking from heaters and fuel leakage from auxiliary heaters.


  • Lighting must satisfy the federal standard in force on date of manufacture



  • accelerator pedal (you need one) and throttle
  • clutch pedal and clutch
  • gear shifter and indicator
  • drive shaft, differential
  • engine and transmission mounts
  • drive belt pulley, powertrain
  • fuel system
  • exhaust system


  • shock/strut ride height, bushing
  • suspension components and travel.


  • Steering system, pumps, and parts
  • remote steering systems


  • wiring
  • battery, posts, connections, mounts, and covers
  • ground

Tire and Wheel

  • increased minimum tread depth
  • all points on a tire must be at or above the minimum
  • no mixing of types of tires (e.g. radial with bias ply)
  • wheel spacers are prohibited; adapters are permitted

Coupling Devices

  • Clearer distinctions among types of hitches and criteria for each type of hitch

Road Test

  • tell-tale noises and vibrations
  • shock absorber function
  • odometer
  • steering
  • etc.


  • inspection report, detailing the results of the inspection, including measurements and warning lamps.

For details:

Your tires are an important contributor to your vehicle’s performance.

At Savasta, we inspect your vehicle, every time we change your oil, for the following:

  • tire inflation pressure
  • tire tread wear, abnormal wear
  • visually check tires for embedded stones, glass and other objects AND we remove them
  • check for need to rotate tires
  • front-end for looseness and excessive play

We recommend the following:

  • rotation about every 15,000 km (every 3rd oil change)
  • balance upon installation of new tires or annually
  • alignment installation of new tires or annually
  • let us know if you ever feel vibrations and pulling to one side

Be Tire Smart