KI Western Auto hosts Ven­ture Scouts

Auto Care 101

Record Observer - - Community - By DOUG BISHOP dbishop@kibay­

STEVENSVILLE — The Kent Is­land Western Auto, owned by Doby and Linda Mid­dle­ton, in Stevensville, re­cently hosted a Auto Care 101 clinic for lo­cal Ven­ture Scouts from Ven­ture Crew 175 of Sudlersville. The unit is spon­sored and meets at Cal­vary Ash­bury United Methodist Church. Western Auto Au­to­mo­tive Tech­ni­cian Jim Tribul pro­vided the in­struc­tion for the group in his work bay for about an hour and half.

Tribul went over ba­sic care car needs many peo­ple ig­nore and then even­tu­ally pay the price to have those items fixed or worse, have to buy a new car sooner than needed if they had taken just a few min­utes to pay at­ten­tion to ba­sic care.

Tribal told the group, “Ev­ery time you stop to fill your gas tank there are some quick things you can do the check your ve­hi­cle to help pre­vent trou­ble. 1. Check the en­gine oil at least weekly, and 2. Check the tire pres­sure reg­u­larly.”

The Mid­dle­tons pre­pared a valu­able packet for the group, list­ing items every­one should do to care for their ve­hi­cle. The packet started with “How to Pack an Emer­gency Kit.” Rec­om­mended items: road­side flares, a First-Aid kit, jumper ca­bles, a flash­light with fresh bat­ter­ies, screw­drivers (both Phillips and flat head), an ad­justable wrench, a pair of pli­ers, duct tape, a spray bot­tle with washer fluid, bot­tled wa­ter, Gra­nola or en­ergy bars, and a AAA or road­side emer­gency card, to men­tion just a few.

Ba­sics for under the hood: check en­gine oil lev­els and clean­li­ness, an­tifreeze/coolant level (never at­tempt to re­move ra­di­a­tor cap while en­gine is hot or warm), brake and pow­er­steer­ing fliud lev­els, trans­mis­sion fluid and en­gine belts. Air fil­ters and wind­shield wipers blades need re­plac­ing — both should be changed once a year. Make sure bat­tery ca­bles are clean and tight.

If your ve­hi­cle breaks down, try to get your ve­hi­cle off the road­way as far as pos­si­ble to pro­vide safety and turn on your flasher/haz­ard lights in­di­cat­ing an emer­gency stop. Stay in­side your ve­hi­cle, and don’t ac­cept rides from strangers.

Re­mem­ber, to­day’s ve­hi­cles are more com­plex and com­pli­cated than the cars of the 1960s, ‘70s and ‘80s, in­cor­po­rat­ing more com­puter elec­tron­ics, sil­i­con chips and so­phis­ti­cated en­gines, Tribul said. How­ever, the same ba­sic care still ap­plies to all kinds of ve­hi­cles and can ex­tend the life and durability of your ve­hi­cle.

Sev­eral of Scouts shared their im­pres­sions fol­low­ing the clinic.

Greg Tarr, 15, of Queen Anne, said, “I al­ready knew quite a bit about car care from work­ing with my dad on our fam­ily car, how­ever, I was im­pressed with how many dif­fer­ent types of flu­ids are put into a car en­gine. I’d like to even­tu­ally take all the pieces of a car apart and then put it back to­gether.”

Seth Gar­cia, 16, of Milling­ton, said, “I was im­pressed with how much Mr. Jim knew about au­to­mo­biles. He knew what he was talk­ing about.”

Scout An­gelo Moore, 15, of Sudlersville, said, “I en­joyed the ex­pe­ri­ence prac­tic­ing the chang­ing of a flat tire. Mr. Jim took us through how to do it safely, step by step.”

An­gelo also noted how dif­fer­ent it is be­ing part of a Ven­ture Crew in Scout­ing. “It’s a more ma­ture ex­pe­ri­ence, be­ing with oth­ers who are pri­mar­ily my own age. That’s dif­fer­ent from a reg­u­lar Boy Scout troop,” he said.

Crew units in­clude both older boys and girls, ages 14 to 20, with a fo­cus on ca­reer ed­u­ca­tion and per­sonal skill de­vel­op­ment ac­tiv­i­ties, as well as high ad­ven­ture ac­tiv­i­ties.

The clinic was ar­ranged by Ven­ture Crew Ad­vi­sors Sharla Rice-Moore and Me­lanie Tarr.


Mem­bers of lo­cal Ven­ture Scout Crew 175 of Sudlersville gather in the work bay at the Western Auto on Kent Is­land for a free auto care clinic. From the left, tech­ni­cian Jim Tribull, Crew mem­bers Shayla Moore, An­gelo Moore, Anna Bald­win, Seth Gar­cia, Mag­gie Kling, Nick Short, Greg Tarr, Nick Short, Crew Ad­vi­sors Shayla Rice-Moore and Me­lanie Tarr, and KI Western Auto owner Doby Mid­dle­ton.


From the left, KI Western Auto Tech­ni­cian Jim Tribull ex­plains ba­sic main­te­nance dur­ing a clinic for a Ven­ture Scout Crew 175 of Sudlersville. Also pic­tured, Scouts An­gelo Moore, Mag­gie Kling, Greg Tarr, Anna Bald­win, Shayla Moore and Nick Short. Ven­ture Scout­ing fo­cuses on ca­reer and skill build­ing as well as nor­mal Scout­ing ac­tiv­i­ties. The clinic was hosted free for the group by KI Western Auto own­ers Doby and Linda Mid­dle­ton.

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