Most people know that their vehicle has a Catalytic Converter but don’t worry about it. A recent and distrurbing trend forces attention on protecting against damage or theft of this device. Theft impacts vehicle maintenance, while increasing auto repair costs. A surge in thefts, especially since the start of the pandemic, is cause for concern, especially for owners of newer vehicles. Across the nation, more than 14,400 Catalytic Converters were stolen around the country in 2020, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau.
This problem is growing here in Colorado as well. Denver police report that from January to May 2020 they had 23 such thefts. For the same period in 2021, they report 980 thefts. There are several ways for local vehicle owners to help prevent this from happening to them.
Impact On All Types of Vehicles
As an anti-pollution device, vehicles of all shapes and sizes have environmental requirements. The cost of a replacement Catalytic Converter is generally now in the $1,000 to $2,000 price range. This does not include any other auto repairs or labor charges from the mechanic. Not long ago, the typical cost was around $350, prior to the recent environmental considerations. Thieves that sell them in quantity generate thousands of dollars. In addition, many are made with precious metals which could also fetch hundreds of dollars. Larger vehicles, including most trucks, often contain multiple converters.
Solving The Problem In Ft. Collins
This type of theft can happen here in Fort Collins. Even though most auto insurance covers theft loss, it may not cover an auto repair. The vehicle owner may face a large deductible. Because of the need for replacements, even the best mechanic can face a delay in getting a new one.
Reducing The Need For Auto Repairs
One strategy to protect your vehicle’s Catalytic Converter is to etch the VIN number on to the Converter. This would prevent a licensed mechanic from installing it elsewhere. Another method is to apply bright colored paint , making it far less attractive to thieves. Some models of cars allow for covers to protect the Converter. These cost in the range of $200. A mechanic can install it, most likely with an added labor cost. A car alarm system should respond to activity underneath the car, especially for vehicles sitting high off the ground.
Additional Steps Fort Collins Residents Can Take
This rise in theft is a reminder to be aware of where your vehicle is at all times. These thefts tend to happen when a vehicle is outside and unattended. Examples are grocery store, medical center, and office building parking lots.
Checking the Catalytic Converter is a part of the vehicle maintenance a licensed mechanic performs. You want to keep your auto repair costs down as much as possible even when you are not a theft victim. Precautions such as covering or painting over your Catalytic Converter could save you hundreds of dollars. Having a top notch alarm system and parking safely also help.
Let our expert mechanic perform vehicle maintenance at your convenience. Schedule your appointment today.
If you’ve heard that Colorado is now subject to new catalytic converter laws, you may be wondering exactly what’s going on — and what that means for your vehicle. Not to worry, because at Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, we’re here to break it all down.
Whether you’re curious about what this new change means for Colorado motorists or you’re just curious about what’s going on, keep reading to learn more.
What It All Means
On January 1, “all sales or installations of aftermarket catalytic converters for any model year vehicle in Colorado must comply with Air Quality Control Commission Regulation Number 20, 5 CCR 1001-24,” according to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. Essentially, since this has gone into effect, it’s necessary for replacement catalytic converters to be original from the manufacturer or a specific aftermarket converter that’s certified to meet specific standards for emissions.
This new regulation also prohibits people from selling “used, recycled, or salvaged” catalytic converters. Additionally, only exempted catalytic converters can now be sold.
But what happens if your vehicle is equipped with a catalytic converter that’s not compliant with the new regulation? Simply put, it will not pass its next emissions test. Interestingly, many catalytic converters have tripled in price since the state of Colorado changed to California’s stricter laws.
What You Can Do
At Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, our mission is to keep your vehicle running its best. If you’re confused or concerned about Colorado’s new regulation, we want you to know that we’re here to lend a helping hand in order to ensure that your vehicle is in compliance.
Although it can sometimes feel overwhelming to deal with new laws and regulations — especially those that are confusing — you can count on our team of expert Fort Collins mechanics to provide you with the insight you need. When it comes to auto repair and vehicle maintenance, we strive to be the best of the best. Since 1977, we’ve been the team people turn to for a variety of different vehicle services, and over the past four decades, we’ve developed a reputation for going the extra mile for each and every person that brings their vehicle to us.
Schedule an Appointment Today
Whether you’d like to learn more or you need to have your catalytic converter replaced, we can help. Of course, in addition to helping with this specific issue, we can also help with general auto maintenance, mufflers, brake repair, oil changes, fluid maintenance, and much more.
In other words, no matter what your vehicle needs, you can trust us to be honest, professional, and knowledgeable about solving your problems. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and rest assured that you’re in good hands with the crew at Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive. We look forward to having the opportunity to lend a helping hand.
Whether you’ve lived in Colorado for your entire life or you’re a new resident, chances are that you’ve heard about just how unpredictable winter weather can be in our neck of the woods. Thankfully, at Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, we’re here to help ensure that your car is ready for the winter ahead.
That’s why in today’s post, we’re highlighting some of the most important tips to follow to ensure that you’re fully prepared for winter in Colorado. While we may go weeks at a time without a sign of snow, the truth is that the weather here can change at the drop of a hat, and that’s why it’s so vitally important to ensure that you’re ready for anything. Keep reading to learn more, and if you need assistance, contact our team of Fort Collins auto repair experts.
How to Prepare Your Vehicle for Winter in Colorado
Get an Oil Change
Although an oil change is often the most-completed form of vehicle maintenance, it’s especially important to be sure that your vehicle is ready for the cold weather ahead. Depending on your vehicle and the temperature, it may be worth asking us if it’s necessary to use a different kind of oil.
Change Your Wiper Blades
If it’s been awhile since you’ve changed your windshield wiper blades, now is the time to do it! Ice, snow, and sleet can quickly cause problems on your windshield, and when your defroster is working to melt them, a quality pair of wiper blades can quickly get rid of water that would otherwise accumulate and freeze. Being able to see clearly out of your window makes all the difference in the world during a winter snowstorm, so make sure you’re prepared by testing your wiper blades. It’s also a great time to check your wiper fluid levels to ensure that they’re topped off before winter begins.
Have Your Heater Inspected
There’s nothing worse than getting into a cold car when it’s freezing outside only to discover that your heater isn’t working. Trust us when we say that even if you’re bundled up in warm outdoor gear, driving a car while it’s in single digits gets old very quickly. Bring your vehicle in to have your heater and defroster checked and tuned up now to avoid trouble later.
Check Your Tires
One of the most vital components of driving on a snowy Colorado day is tires. Whether you have snow tires put on your vehicle or not is entirely up to you, but making certain that your tires have enough tread is crucial. Our advice? Use a penny! All you have to do is place your penny in the treads of your tires. If the top of President Lincoln’s head disappears in the treads, chances are that your tires are in good shape.
Of course, this is one area where we recommend double and triple checking to ensure that you’re safe. Need a hand? Bring your vehicle in for general maintenance and ask us what we think. We’ll let you know the safest option based on the specific wear you have on your tires.
Keep an Emergency Supply Kit
Ultimately, you never know when things will take a turn for the worst. That’s why it’s so important to ensure that you’re ready for anything. After all, if you’re stuck at the office or broken down on the side of the road, you’ll be thankful that you prepared an emergency kit. We recommend keeping the following items tucked away in the trunk of your car:
- Blanket (reflective if possible)
- Water bottle
- Jumper cables
- Multipurpose tool
- First aid kit
- Duct tape
- Extra clothing
Get Your Car Ready With Expert Vehicle Maintenance
At Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, we would be glad to provide you with any vehicle maintenance your car needs before winter rolls around. Although it’s hard to believe that summer is in the rearview mirror, fall is in full swing and we’ll get our first snow before we know it. It pays to be prepared, so whether you’re in need of an oil change, new tires, brake repair, an alignment, or general car care, our team is here to help.
At Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, our mission is to provide each and every customer who comes to our shop with service that is absolutely unmatched. We pride ourselves on being the local auto repair shop that people can trust, and that’s why in today’s post, we’d like to share a handful of our most recent reviews from all across the internet.
After all, at the end of the day, the thing that matters most to us is what other people say about our business. Keep reading to read some of our favorite recent reviews, or feel free to contact us today to schedule general maintenance, brake inspections, oil changes, and more from the local mechanic you can trust to get the job done thoroughly and properly.
Fort Collins Muffler & Automotive Reviews
“We were in town dropping off our daughter at CSU when her “new” used car started having issues. I brought the car into your shop. Aaron was great. Friendly, knowledgeable, helpful, reliable…He had great follow through, and I feel confident that we now have a go-to place for her automotive needs for the rest of her time in Ft. Collins.” – Brendan
“They replaced the catalytic converters on my 2002 Subaru outback very quickly. They had the part there within a day and they had the vehicle out within a couple of hours but the work was not rushed and was done professionally and properly and passed emissions immediately! They did a professional exhaust job faster than a Subaru dealership for a grand less, I highly highly recommend this shop! 10/10” – Ethan
“Wow!! Went in for an estimate and my vehicle was fixed right there on the spot within a couple hours!! Thank you!!!!! FAST FRIENDLY EFFICIENT!!! I was really pleased, very affordable 😊 Will highly recommend to others!” – Ester
At the time we’re writing this, we hold 4.7 stars on Google, 4.9 stars on Facebook, and a 98.99 rating score on Top Rated Local®, so don’t hesitate to visit us on social media to read more reviews. Have you worked with us in the past? We’d love to know what your experience was like, so feel free to leave a review while you’re there. Of course, we also share info about our Car Care Club, tips for maintaining your car, specials, coupons, and more, so give us a like to stay up to date with what we’re doing.
From Vehicle Maintenance to Repair, We Have You Covered
There’s no doubt that finding a good mechanic in Fort Collins can feel overwhelming, but the good news is that when you choose Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, we’ll take great care of you throughout the entire process. Conveniently located at 20001 S. College, we make it easy to bring your car in for an oil change or drop it off for maintenance before you go about your day.
Backed by highly qualified vehicle technicians and top-of-the-line equipment, we strive to be the auto repair shop you can rely on for all of your needs. Since 1977, we’ve been a family owned and operated business — and we’re proud to carry that tradition into the present day. As a small business, we know the value of hard work and customer service. That’s why when you choose to bring your car to us, you can rest assured that we’ll pay attention to the details and take the time necessary to get the job done the right way.
We love being a part of our community and nothing brings us greater joy than keeping your vehicle running smoothly. Whether you need assistance with mufflers, brake repair, alignment, heating and air conditioning, ignition systems, or general maintenance, you can rely on us to provide you with high-caliber repair services.
Contact Us Today — We’ll Live Up to Our Reputation
With free pickup and delivery so you don’t have to leave your home during COVID, free loaner cars, or a shuttle service that gets you where you need to go, we’re the team to turn to when you need help for your vehicle. We even offer free consultations and estimates, ensuring that you know exactly what to expect when you bring your car to Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive. For many, convenience is key to a great repair experience, and when you choose to work with us, that’s what we’ll provide.
Although choosing a mechanic is difficult, we want you to know that we’ll go above and beyond when you bring your vehicle to Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive for maintenance or repair. Be sure to read more reviews on Top Rated Local®, Facebook, Yelp, and Google, then contact us today to schedule an appointment. No matter your specific needs, you can count on being in good hands. We look forward to hearing from you!
When it comes to vehicle maintenance, many people out there are uncertain about whether or not their cars actually need certain repairs. This makes sense, of course, because if you don’t know the ins and outs of cars, you almost have to take the experts at their word.
It’s true that many mechanics are honest and simply want to lend a helping hand, but it’s also true that some out there are looking for an opportunity to stretch the truth a little bit to get you to pay for a service you don’t really need. So what do you need to know about how to avoid these situations? Let’s take a look.
Common Phrases to Be Aware Of
“Without getting into details, you should…”
If a mechanic won’t give you the information about what’s going on with your vehicle because they don’t think you’ll understand, it’s a sign that they might be trying to pull a fast one on you. There’s no doubt that some repairs are very detailed and it can be difficult to describe exactly what’s needed. The difference between a good mechanic and a bad one, however, is that the good ones will always do their best to keep you in the loop about what’s necessary.
“You’re not going to want to drive that very far. We’d hate for you to break down.”
This tactic, of course, is one that takes advantage of your fear of breaking down. It causes you to think about how you’d rather just pay some money than having to deal with sitting on the side of the road, calling a tow truck, and figuring out what to do next. Although it’s sometimes true that your car is in dire need of a repair, you should be sure to ask questions about the nature of the repairs that the mechanic deems necessary. If possible, get a second opinion.
“We better just replace it all at once to save you some time.”
This is another tactic that some dishonest mechanics turn to. In this instance, the mechanic makes it seem like they are doing you a favor by saving you time later on. In reality, what’s happening is that you may be replacing something that has months or years of life left.
“Sorry, that didn’t fix the problem.”
If a mechanic tells you about your need for an expensive repair and you give the okay, but the problem remains, you will inevitably be frustrated. It’s important to keep in mind that the age of your car, whether you stuck to a routine maintenance schedule, and the quality of work done previously can all play a role in the ongoing health of your vehicle, but if a mechanic tells you they thought the work they did would fix your car and it didn’t (and that they have another idea), you should consider seeking a second opinion.
Fort Collins Vehicle Maintenance You Can Trust
At the end of the day, you deserve to know that you can rely on your mechanic to do the work that needs to be done the right way. As a family owned and operated vehicle repair shop, we know the value of honesty. In fact, it’s this commitment to putting our customers first that has allowed us to stay in business since 1977. We pride ourselves on ensuring that no matter your needs, you can count on us to steer you straight. It’s as simple as that.
We consider our work an investment in our community, so if you’re looking for an auto repair shop you can trust, look no further. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and rest assured that you’re in good hands. We look forward to hearing from you!
Air Filter – 15,000-30,000 miles
Fuel Filter – ~30,000 miles
Batteries – Every four to five years
Brake Fluid – 20,000-50,000 miles
Brake Pads – 25,000-50,000 miles
Coolant – 50,000-60,000 miles
Power Steering Fluid – 70,000 miles
Timing Belt – 70,000-90,000 miles
Transmission Fluid – 30,000-80,000 miles
A Few Things to Keep in Mind
Of course, the suggestions above are just that — suggestions. First and foremost, we want you to know that when you visit Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, we’d be happy to provide you with a consultation to let you know how things are looking in your vehicle. In other words, if you’re getting close to hitting one of the milestones above, don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment to bring your vehicle in. It’s also important to note that every make and model of vehicle are different, so it’s important to consult your vehicle’s owner manual to get specific recommendations for your car.
It’s also important to keep in mind that the milestones above are not a complete list. There are other things that may be necessary to do to your vehicle to keep it in good working order. Perhaps most importantly, regular oil changes should be a top priority for keeping your car in top notch condition. At the end of the day, no matter your vehicle, no matter your specific needs, you can always trust the pros at Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive to steer you in the right direction.
Why Visit Us for Auto Repair?
For many, finding a local mechanic can feel overwhelming. How do you know who you can trust to work on your vehicle? How can you be certain that the advice they’re giving is true and accurate?
For starters, it’s important to choose a mechanic with a good reputation. Backed by over 40 years of experience, Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive has earned a name for ourselves in the community as a hard-working, trustworthy auto repair shop. Take a look at our reviews and see for yourself what others have to say about us.
At the end of the day, the thing that makes us different from the rest is a dedication to our community. We love Fort Collins, we love our shop, and we love the people who turn to us to get the help they need. From routine repairs and maintenance to fleet services to being a Certified Colorado Emissions Repair Facility, our mission is to meet the unique needs of each and every one of our customers. You deserve to have a go-to mechanic you can trust to get the job done the right way — and at Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, we want you to know that you can turn to us when you’re having an issue with your car.
Contact Us Today
No matter your situation, we want you to know that when you visit us you’ll be greeted warmly and treated to quality auto repair services. It’s as simple as that. Have a question for our team? Want to schedule a visit to have your vehicle checked out? Whatever the case may be, we’d love to hear from you and we’d be happy to lend a hand. Contact us today.
At Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, our goal is to provide each and every one of our customers with the top-of-the-line service they’ve come to expect from us. For the past four decades, we have gone above and beyond to ensure that no matter the needs of our customer, we make sure to get the job done right. That’s why when you visit us, you won’t be greeted by pushy salespeople who recommend work that you don’t really need — instead, you’ll find a friendly team that lives up to its reputation of being the best auto shop in Fort Collins.
But what exactly is it that makes us different from other mechanics in our neck of the woods? We’re not ones to brag, but what we will do is share with you what you can expect when you visit us. Really, it comes down to three things. Keep reading to learn more, then contact us today to schedule a free consultation with one of our automotive professionals.
Why Visit Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive?
Family Owned and Operated Since 1977
In this day and age, finding a business that’s been around for a decade, let alone four decades, can be tough. Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive is proud to have developed a reputation for service over the past forty years and we strive to live up to that reputation each and every day. As a family owned business, we feel a great sense of pride in being able to do the work started by family members before us, carrying on a tradition of hard work, honesty, and integrity.
Free Consultations and Estimates on Most Items
We get it — having a problem with your car can be incredibly frustrating. That’s especially true if you don’t know what’s actually going on with it. That’s why our team is proud to offer free consultations and estimates, ensuring that you know exactly what you’re getting into. Rather than jumping in and leaving you with a bill, we’ll take the time to look at your car, let you know what’s going on, and let you know what costs will be associated with fixing it. If you’re having an issue, bring your car in and give us 10 minutes or so to take a look. We’ll let you know the direction we need to go. As we mentioned above, we pride ourselves on our honesty, and that’s why you can expect us to stay in communication with you throughout the entire repair process. The end result? You stay in the know about what’s going on with your vehicle at all times.
Please note that a testing and diagnostics fee may apply.
Free Loaner Cars or Shuttle Service
People are busy, and if you need to be somewhere, you’ll need to have a car to get there. That’s why Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive is happy to offer free loaner cars or shuttle services to get you where you need to be. Being without a car is inconvenient, but you can rely on us to make a frustrating situation a whole lot easier.
A Few Bonuses You’re Sure to Love
Of course, this might pale in comparison to the qualities mentioned above, but it’s also worth noting that we’re conveniently located on South College, just a couple blocks from Dairy Queen. That means that while we’re working, you can take a quick stroll and come back with some delicious ice cream. It doesn’t get much better than that!
We are an approved AAA facility and also an approved Air Care Colorado emission repair facility and we even have a free phone charging system if you need to top off your device’s battery while you wait. Additionally, we have free wifi if you’d like to connect your device to browse social media, get some work done, or just surf the internet. Are these huge selling points? Perhaps not, but they’re sure to make your visit to see us just a little bit better.
Your Friendly Fort Collins Auto Repair Experts
At the end of the day, we know that you have options about where to take your car, but whether it’s general maintenance and oil changes or muffler issues, brake work, or alignments, we want you to know that you can trust us to do the work the right way. There’s nothing we love more than serving our community with honest auto repair, so if you’re in need of help with your vehicle and you want to be certain that you can rely on your mechanic, look no further.
Join Our Car Care Club
For many, keeping their car running is a priority, but the truth is that it can be expensive. That’s why we’re proud to introduce our Car Care Club that can help you to save big if you know you’ll have some upcoming expenses. When you join, you’ll get four free conventional oil changes (or two free synthetic oil changes), a free comprehensive vehicle inspection, free alignment (for most vehicles), and various discounts to keep your car in tip-top shape. You can use the Car Care Club across multiple vehicles and coupons can be used by you, or you can share them with friends and family members. Best of all, our introductory price for the Car Care Club is only $90, saving you big in the long run.
Ultimately, no matter your specific needs, our goal is to provide you with quality service at a price that’s fair. With a team of expert mechanics, you can rest assured that we’ll go above and beyond to provide you with the repairs or maintenance you need. Our reputation speaks for itself, so be sure to Google us and check out our reviews to see for yourself!
Contact us today to schedule an appointment and rest assured that you’re in good hands with the pros at Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive. We look forward to hearing from you!
We’ve all been there — your car is making a funny noise. Or it’s leaking oil. Or a light on the dashboard comes on at random intervals. Or it just doesn’t seem to drive straight anymore.
Needless to say, it might be time for an automotive repair. The truth is that it’s not always easy to tell when you need to bring your vehicle in for maintenance, and that’s why in today’s post, we’d like to share a few of the most common signs that it’s time to have your car looked at.
Of course, the most important thing to many people is having a mechanic they can trust to do the job the right way. Thankfully, at Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, we’ll go above and beyond to fix the issues your vehicle has. You can count on us to be honest and straightforward. At the end of the day, we pride ourselves on our attention to detail and our customer service. In other words, you won’t find pushy salespeople when you visit us for auto repair — instead, you’ll find a team that’s served this area for over four decades. Keep reading to learn more about the signs that it’s time to visit a mechanic, or contact us now to schedule an appointment.
It’s Time to Bring Your Car In If…
A Dashboard Light Is On
The first sign that you need to see a mechanic is also the most obvious one — dashboard lights. While you can consult your manual to see which light went on and why, it’s important to visit a mechanic when it happens in order to get the problem resolved quickly.
Everything Is Vibrating
Is your engine shaking? Do your wheels vibrate? Does everything in your car just sort of buzz from time to time? Chances are that if something is shaking unexpectedly, you’re going to want to get it addressed sooner than later. While vibrations are often caused by small things that can be fixed easily, it could also be a sign of a bigger issue. In this case, knowledge is power, and knowing what’s going on with your car is the best way to keep you safe.
Your Car Is Smoking
You might think that everyone who experiences a smoking engine would bring the car in for auto repair, but you’d be surprised. If your car starts smoking, it’s a surefire sign that something is not right. Our advice? Bring your car in as soon as possible.
You Notice Leaks
Are you tired of seeing spots and stains on the ground every time you come back to your car? While it could be as simple as your air conditioner dripping water onto the ground, it can just easily be a more serious situation. Take note of the color and consistency of the liquid if possible, as this can help us to quickly troubleshoot the situation.
There’s a Weird Noise
No, that noise you keep hearing isn’t in your head. If you can’t quite pinpoint the source of the noise, that’s okay. See if you can capture it on a video, but if not, pay close attention to the type of noise, because this can aid us in getting to the bottom of the problem quickly in order to get you up and running again. Is it a clunk? A creak? A whine? Any information you can give is helpful.
Fort Collins Auto Repair Made Easy
At the end of the day, the truth is that if it seems like you might need to see a mechanic, you should make it a point to bring your car in sooner than later. As we mentioned above, we know that having a problem with your car is frustrating, but unfortunately, ignoring a problem won’t make it go away.
Thankfully, you can count on us to treat you right from the moment you bring your vehicle in. Best of all, when you visit Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive, we offer a free shuttle or loaner car to get you where you need to go. We know that having your car worked on can be a difficult experience, but you can trust us to go above and beyond to offer the best repairs and the best service. In other words, we’ll work hard to make your life easier even in the midst of difficulty. As a family owned and operated business with nearly 40 years of experience, we know the value of honesty, integrity, and hard work. It’s what has allowed us to develop a reputation for being the go-to team for auto repair in Fort Collins.
Contact Us Today
Whether you’re experiencing one of the warning signs above or it’s something else entirely, if you’re in need of an auto mechanic you can trust for thorough, detailed work, look no further. We offer free consultations and estimates, and that means you’ll know exactly what to expect. We pride ourselves on our communication, our honesty, and our integrity. From general maintenance to brake repair to alignments to heating and air conditioning, we offer a variety of different services to ensure your car is running smoothly.
Ready to get started? Contact us today to chat with our team or schedule an appointment, then rest assured that you’re in good hands at Fort Collins Muffler and Automotive. We look forward to hearing from you!