Driver Resources

Welcome to Universal Collision Centre’s Resources

We have developed this area to educate and help vehicle owners.

Did you know exactly when your tires need to be replaced? How to get rid of simple scratches? Or how to properly check your fluid levels? Most of us do not. We will continue to build up our resource arsenal with some of the most common questions we get at UCC. That way no one needs to be too embarrassed to ask the silly question.

The information on this page should be used as a general reference. Every vehicle is different, so please consult with one of our technicians or collision repair advisors or your mechanic for more detailed information. If you would like to suggest a topic or ask a question we would be more than happy to research it and add it here for all users to review. Share the information on your favorite social media sites.

Be sure to check out the Apps section for great ideas on using technology in today’s environment. Likewise, if you have tested an App that is worthy of posting here please let us know.

Checking Fluid Levels

Checking fluid levels

One of the easiest preventative measures you can perform yourself

No matter your skill level

Engine Oil

  1. Make sure your vehicle is turned off.
  2. Pop the hood and find the oil dipstick.
  3. Pull out the dipstick and wipe it down. Repeat this step and your oil level should be on the dipstick.
  4. If it’s in the safe level, continue on your merry way. If it’s not, you’ll need to add more oil. If you’re adding a lot of oil or adding it frequently, it’s worth going to your technician.

Check your oil at least once a month.

Oil changes depend on the make and model of your vehicle. Most newer models have an Oil Life Monitor that will notify you, but if your vehicle is not equipped with one, refer to your owner’s manual.


 

Transmission Fluid

  1. Make sure your vehicle is running.
  2. Pop the hood and find the transmission dipstick.
  3. Pull out the dipstick and wipe it down. Repeat this step and your transmission fluid level should be on the dipstick.
  4. If you notice your fluid is low, you’ll need to visit a technician right away.
  5. When looking at transmission fluid, you’re usually looking for quality, not quantity, of the fluid. It should be red and should not smell burned. If it’s brown or has a burnt smell, it’s time to replace the fluid.

Check your fluid at least once a month.

Transmission fluid changes depend on the make and model of your vehicle and transmission, but most require changes between every 80,000 km – 160,000 km.


Coolant

  1. Make sure your car is not running and it is completely cooled.
  2. Pop the hood. The coolant is inside your radiator but can be checked by simply removing the radiator cap.
  3. You should see a line indicating the optimum coolant level. If it’s low, you can add more but make sure it is the same type.

Check your coolant at least twice a year; once before summer and once before winter.

Coolant should be replaced every 2-3 years.


Power Steering Fluid

  1. Make sure your vehicle is turned off.
  2. Pop the hood and find the reservoir. Take a look at the fluid level in the reservoir.
  3. Power steering fluid doesn’t usually run low so if you find that it is, it’s best to take your vehicle to a technician to check for a leak.

Power steering fluid should be checked once per month.

Power steering fluid replacement varies greatly between vehicles. Please refer to your owner’s manual

Waterborne Paint

Collision Experts in Regina

SGI Accredited Collision Repair Centre

With over 40, 000 square feet we offer the latest in technology and customer service. From ECO Friendly Waterbourne Paint to a software system that tracks your vehicle through the complete production process. We also have a Pick-up and Delivery Service for your convenience.

We Use Waterborne Paint

Sikkens Waterborn PaintAt Universal Collision Centre, we choose only the highest quality products in every stage of the repair process. We use waterborne paint which has supplanted traditional solvent-based paint for a variety of reasons. The switch from solvent-based paints to the waterborne was initiated primarily to reduce the amount of VOCs released during the painting process. VOCs (volatile organic compounds) are a danger to soil, groundwater, and the ambient air. VOCs are often referred to as “efficient” greenhouse gases, meaning they are significantly contributive to global warming. Waterborne paints have only trace amounts of VOCs – in addition to more visible benefits.

Where solvent-based paints use chemicals to suspend pigments, waterborne paints use (obviously) water. A two-step application process is completed with a clearcoat. In terms of colour-accuracy, fade-out, and cost-effectiveness, our waterborne paint options are difficult to rival. You will notice that the hues produced by waterborne paint are cleaner and brighter than those of traditional automotive paints.

Sikkens Getting Color Right

Watch the team at Sikkens Akzo Nobel create, apply and test automotive paint.

Simple Scratch Repair Tips

Home Remedies to Remove Car Scratches

Scratches can appear and leave your vehicle’s exterior looking less than perfect, and possibly causing damage to the paint if not addressed properly and efficiently. Most vehicle owners search the shelves for specific car products, often overwhelmed with what they find.

In many cases, you don’t need anything more than what you already have in your home! The first step, in every case, is to examine the scratch. You can do this by wiping the area clean with soap and water then drying with a soft cloth. If these methods do not help, it may be best to call the professionals at Universal.

Shoe Polish

The shoe polish guides you to sand the scratch without going too deep into the paint.

  1. Find a polish that is the contrasting colour of your vehicle paint.
  2. Make sure the area is clean.
  3. Apply the polish to the area of the scratch. It will spread out and fill in the scratch.
  4. Minor scratches can be removed by using sandpaper and, very gently, sanding down the area surrounding the scratch. The key is to make the scratch level with the surrounding panel. Be careful not to sand too much! If you do, it could damage the next layer of paint and worsen the situation.
  5. Continue sanding lightly until the applied shoe polish has been removed.
  6. Use a cloth to buff the area and check if the scratch has disappeared. If it hasn’t, it may be too deep and time to call the professionals at Universal.

Toothpaste

Toothpaste has natural abrasive components that can erase minor scratches on your vehicle.

  1. Make sure the scratched area is clean.
  2. Apply toothpaste to a clean, dry cloth and buff the area, using circular strokes.
  3. Wipe clean with a soft cloth and repeat the process until the scratch has disappeared.

Nail Polish

Some scratches cannot be removed by buffing or sanding so the best way to deal with them may be to cover them. Nail polish is available in a variety of colours that can match any and every paint colour.

  1. Find the closest polish colour to your vehicle
  2. Make sure the area is clean.
  3. Apply the polish evenly so the scratch is no longer visible.
  4. If the scratch it still visible, try other scratch removers or another home remedy.

Candle Wax

Candle wax is a way to remove very light scratches, as it does not work well for deeper scratches. It’s also a great way to prevent further damage before your appointment at Universal.

  1. Make sure the area is clean.
  2. Lightly rub candle wax onto the damaged area. The wax will temporarily cover up and seal the scratch.

Super Glue

Super Glue can serve as a transparent material that will level the scratch with the rest of the surrounding area.

  1. Make sure the area is clean.
  2. Apply glue thinly to the scratch.

Home remedies can be used on minor scratches, however they may not be applicable for all scratches.

If you are unsure about these methods, or if they didn’t work for you, it would be best to bring your vehicle to the professionals at Universal.

When Should Tires Be Replaced?

When Should Tires Be Replaced?

1. Check for tire wear
Generally, tires indicate different types of wear; each pattern can indicate an issue occurring while driving.
1. Toe Wear: thin inner or outer edge wear, indicating an alignment issue
2. Camber Wear: exaggerated inner or outer wear, indicating an alignment issue
3. Centre Wear: thin tire tread in the centre of the tire, indicating over inflation
4. Edge Wear: thin tread wear along both edges, indicating underinflation

2. Check for cuts, splits, cracks, blisters, or protruding objects
Some tire damage can be replaced, but it’s best to have an expert take a look.

3. Check for tread wear.
Tires need to be replaced when tread depth is less than 2/32”. Worn tires are simply unsafe; low tread increases the chances of hydroplaning or otherwise losing control of your vehicle.

4. Should flat tires be replaced?
Not necessarily. In many cases, a tire can be repaired if:
1. You have not driven on the flat tire
2. The damage is on the tread of the tire, not the sidewall
3. There is a puncture that is smaller than ¼”

Always check with a tire expert!

Windshield

Your windshield is vital to your overall structural integrity and safety.

The importance of the windshield to your vehicle’s overall health is often underrated. A poorly installed windshield can reduce the effectiveness of your airbags and compromise the integrity of your vehicle’s roof. Consequently, you should only have your vehicle’s windshield installed by true professionals. At Universal Collision Centre, our experts use only the highest quality equipment to ensure an even application.

Stone Chip Repair

As your first line of defence against the elements, your windshield should be properly maintained. For the most part, that simply means you should have cracks and chips repaired as soon they appear. Otherwise the integrity of the windshield will be compromised as they spread. Repairing these cracks before that happens will save you from purchasing a new windshield.

As a rough guide, windshield cracks exceeding 6 inches in length cannot be repaired effectively. In the presence of that much damage, the whole windshield must be replaced.  Obviously, this will cost you several times more than a simple chip repair. Thats why it’s important that you fix each crack as soon as it appears.