Basic Vehicle Troubleshooting - Liberty Road Services - 2023


Cars are man-made machines; they are not perfectly built. And in that note, no matter how frequent you bring it to an automobile shop for preventive maintenance activities, there will always be a risk of a breakdown, while a preventive maintenance program is only designed to lessen the chance of it.

Breakdowns happen to new vehicles as much as they do to older vehicles. And this is not necessarily because the driver did not give enough care to the vehicle. Other factors should be looked into as well such as environmental factors, vehicle maintenance mistakes, or accidents. And records support this claim. In fact, statistics show that every driver is likely to experience car breakdowns at least once in his or her driving life.

Here at Liberty Road Services, for instance, we have noticed that, more often than not, there is a surge in emergency calls from customers who need car recovery services during the winter season as temperatures in this period are below freezing point and such would definitely take a toll on any vehicle; more so, if the vehicle does not have proper maintenance and car.

While Liberty Road Services is committed to serve you and respond to your location for all your towing and roadside assistance needs 24/7, as a driver, you are still required to know basic vehicle troubleshooting. After all, it’s worth it being able to figure out what could be wrong with your vehicle before it gets hauled down to a reliable repair shop like Jersey City Tow Truck.

Basic Vehicle Troubleshooting

1.  Tire Check-up – As a car owner, it is imperative that you perform a check-up on your tires before driving your car, e.g. taking a look at the treads.

Car manufacturers would always advise that tires be rotated every 10,000 miles. If you have noticed a significant difference as to how your vehicle performs on the road like you noticed your traction having a better grip on the pavement, it could be because you have failed to meet this rule. In other words, your tires are probably due for a rotation.

The Value of Tire Pressure
Now, if you are suspecting that your tires are already old and damaged, be cautious on their pressures. If your car has been manufactured in the last twenty years, you will likely see a pressure indicator warning within your dashboard and this is something you should draw attention to. The indicator actually gives you a warning if something is wrong with your tire in terms of tire pressure.

One of the culprits of low tire pressure is the weather. During winter, the pressures usually go low regardless if your vehicle is an ordinary sedan, or a truck, a bicycle, or a motorcycle. And it is best, during these times, to gauge each of your tire’s pressure and have them all filled up to their recommended air pressure levels; failure to do so may damage your tires and rims, not to mention it can cause realignment on your vehicle, and of course, who would want a flat tire?

Another culprit is the usage. We all know anything overused is more prone to damage. The same is true with tires. Low tire pressure can take place due to time. For instance, if you use your car all the time and yet you failed to put enough pressure on your tires, then you can expect a wear and tear effect. But if they went through regular maintenance and yet you see the pressure indicator lighting, it is another story. In that case, it could be that you ran over a sharp object like a nail.  

Regardless of the culprit that is present in your tire problem, what you should always ensure is that your tires contain enough air pressure. Have them constantly checked and fill them when necessary. And keep an eye on your indicator light as much as possible.

The Unwanted Circumstance
No matter how you made sure that your tires are all checked up before going on a trip, the chances of getting into accidents or unfavorable circumstances are still there. That means you can drive along the highway and still accidentally run over a sharp or hard object like a rock and this can unfortunately make your tire burst. During significant tire damages, remember these:

  • Try as hard as you can to take control of the steering wheel as the damage will increase the tendency of swerving.


  • Pull your car over to a safe area and call a reliable and reputable roadside assistance and towing company like Liberty Road Services right away for your car recovery needs in and outside Jersey City, New Jersey.


  • Minor impacts can still cause swerving and the steering wheel in this case is likely going to vibrate as well. If you are with a company in your trip, a DIY tire replacement is okay but otherwise, ensure your safety first; call us for your tire repair/replacement needs.

2. Battery Check-up – Car batteries will eventually face their own death but what drivers do not want is if their deaths happen during the most inconvenient times causing a spoilt trip. So to prevent this from happening, here are the signs to tell that your battery is dead or dying:

  • Interior lights are flickering or they are no longer working. It is not a secret how lights can suck the life out of any car battery. To prevent a dying one, make sure your interior lights are all turned off before leaving your car. If you accidentally left them on during the day, you know the consequence.
  • Headlights, fog lights, and tail lights are not working smoothly.  These lights can also drain the car’s battery. If your battery is dead, these lights will not be able to work. The good news is, cars nowadays can have an alarm installed and it makes it easier for every driver to know if any lights are left open. What this system does is it will alert with a sound if the lights are still on after the engine is turned off.


  • Horn does not produce a good honking sound. You will know that your battery is dying if there is a noticeable difference in your honking sound, i. e. the honking sound is weak or husky.


  • Engine does not turn on when you turn on the ignition. Instead, you will only hear a clicking sound.

3.  Engine Check-up – Sometimes, a dead battery gets instantly blamed for a non working car engine. But the truth is, there are still other problems that a vehicle that is not properly maintained can suffer from. In this case, vehicle troubleshooting can help a lot. However, if you are not comfortable or familiar with in depth repair, i. e. literally working under the hood for spark plug replacement or electrical fuse repair or replacement, then a professional intervention is highly recommended to resolve the issue.

A Smoking Engine
If things get a bit worse like you happened to smell anything burning or notice a suspicious smoke in the middle of your trip, the first thing you should do is pull over to a safe side, turn off the engine, and the power accessories if possible, pop your hood open, take the keys with you and get out of the vehicle right away.​

Sometimes, lack of maintenance can cause a smoky engine. Either your thermostat is sticking or your coolant has run out. With proper maintenance, a smoking engine can be prevented.

Leaking Fluids
Accidents are sometimes minor and tolerable but if you got into one and notice any fluids leaking from your car, you may want to notice where the leaking is from. As fluids make the vehicle run smoothly, if you run out of them due to leaking, mechanical issues are bound to take place. Hence, if you are caught in this situation, it is best to not force your vehicle to run further but instead, call a tow truck company like JC Tow Truck to help deliver your car to our shop for repair at an affordable cost.

Liberty Road Services offers not just long distance towing service but also other premium quality roadside assistance and towing services, addressing your needs whether you are inside Jersey City or you are anywhere in New Jersey.

Basic vehicle troubleshooting is like a first aid procedure. Eventually, a help from the experts is required to make sure the issues are dealt with with quality, accuracy, and efficiency. Here at Liberty Road Services, we provide only quality roadside assistance and towing services for every driver in need in and around Jersey City. Whether it is battery jumpstart service, mobile tire service, long distance towing, gas delivery or tire replacement you need, just give us a call for a guaranteed fast and quality response.