Costa Mesa Auto Service Center

Servicing Costa Mesa, and all of Orange County since 1999

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center - Servicing Costa Mesa, and all of Orange County since 1999

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center Helps You Decipher The Menu Board: Part 2

COSTA MESA service centers have a menu board that lists the services they provide. Some COSTA MESA drivers may not be familiar with all of the items on the board so here is a quick description of some of the typical services that might be listed.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center fuel system cleaning: Over time, the sedan fuel system gets gum and varnish built up. A fuel system cleaning gets rid of that and cleans out the fuel injectors. Saves gas, by the way.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center headlamp replacement: Halogen and standard headlamps gradually fade. It’s usually good to change them every year or so.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center inspections: COSTA MESA drivers get inspections for many reasons. Maybe they’re going on a trip or just want to make sure their vehicle’s ready for CA summer or winter. Maybe they just bought a used sedan and want to give it the once over. An inspection may reveal some things that are broken or are getting close to having a problem.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center oil change: – there are several options: Some COSTA MESA centers offer just an oil change and new filter as an option. Most will also check and top off all of your other fluids and do a quick visual inspection with a full service oil change. In my way of thinking, the full service option is best because it makes sure you have adequate fluids and may uncover an emerging problem. There may also be options for higher mileage fluids or an upgrade to synthetic oil.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center PCV valve replacement in COSTA MESA:
PCV stands for Positive Crankcase Ventilation valve. It’s a little part that releases pressure from the engine. It can get gummed up and that can lead to engine damage. Just needs to be changed now and then.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center power steering service: Often overlooked. Your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center technician will evacuate the old fluid, clean out the system and replace it with clean fluid. Keeps the sedan system running well for a long time.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center serpentine belt service:
That’s the belt that powers the sedan engine’s accessories like the alternator, air conditioner, power steering and brakes. You’ll want to replace the serpentine belt before it breaks, because that’ll shut you down.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center shocks and struts: This starts with an inspection of the suspension components. Shocks last a long time and wear out slowly, so many COSTA MESA people don’t notice when it’s time to change them. If they’re worn or leaking, they need to be replaced.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center transmission service:
This involves removing the transmission fluid and replacing it with clean fluid. It’s like an oil change for your transmission.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center tire rotation and wheel balancing: The tires are rotated from front to back using the recommended rotation pattern. This helps tires wear more evenly. Wheels need to be balanced from time to time to keep them turning without any wobble or bounce. Helps the ride and saves tire wear.

Keeping Your ‘Old Faithful’ Auto Running

At Costa Mesa Auto Service Center we’ve had a lot of COSTA MESA, Huntington Beach, and Costa Mesa clients asking how they can make their vehicles last longer. These questions are actually a reflection of a trend that’s been building for several years in CA. The median age of personal vehicles is now over nine years. And 33 percent of all vehicles on the road have over 75,000 miles on them. It looks like it’s going to keep heading in that direction for a while. With high fuel prices, a lot of Irvine folks are putting off buying a new car. Thanks to AutoNetTV, we can provide you with a video answer to this essential question.

So let’s say you’re one of the average car owners in the Irvine area; you’ve got a nine year old car with 80,000 miles on the odometer. What can you to do make it last another year or two?

Let’s start with the premise that there’s no reason that a modern car can’t run for 200,000 miles with proper care in COSTA MESA. The engineering and manufacturing quality is there.

Of course, some parts will wear out along the way, but there’s no reason for a catastrophic meltdown if astute COSTA MESA motorists stay on top of their recommended car maintenance. The maintenance schedule in some car maker’s owner’s manuals runs out at 60,000 miles or so: how do COSTA MESA auto owners know what to do when they’re way past that?

It is a challenge, for example: If a service is recommended every 15,000 miles for the first 60,000 miles you can just keep getting it done at least every 15,000 miles after you hit 60,000 miles. But, it gets more complicated because older engines lose some efficiency, are dirtier inside and are just more stressed. That means it’s very important to not miss any scheduled services. Skipping just one oil change at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center in COSTA MESA, for example, leaves an opportunity for detrimental sludge to build up. Talk to your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center tech.

So all the usual things like oil changes, transmission service, coolant service, brakes, power steering, fuel system cleaning – all that stuff needs to be maintained. People responsible for fleet vehicles around COSTA MESA are sticklers for scheduled maintenance. They know that money spent on maintenance saves them three ways:

  1. it keeps MPG from decreasing;
  2. it prevents costly repairs, and;
  3. they can postpone purchasing new vehicles.

Having the oil changed may be the most essential thing drivers can do. A full-service oil change at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center means that all of your other fluids get topped off so they are never low enough to cause damage. It also gives your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center service specialist a chance to spot problems in the early stages so that you can fix them before they get costly. And it gives you a touch point with an automotive professional along the way to remind you of things that aren’t scheduled as often – things like differential service and timing belt replacement.

If you live in the COSTA MESA area and have an older vehicle, you may need to follow the severe service maintenance schedule. Check your owner’s manual and talk with your service specialist at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center. Conditions inside an older engine, transmission and cooling system can arguably be considered severe – so shorter intervals could well be called for.

And, the team at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center strongly encourages COSTA MESA auto owners to consider using high mileage formulation fluids. They’re fluids like engine oil, transmission fluid and coolant that are formulated for older engines. They have special additives to clean deposits, and to condition and restore seals and gaskets that dry out with age. Some COSTA MESA auto owners start using higher mileage formulations at around 50,000 miles as a preventive measure.

Of course you also want to still look marvelous in your older car as you drive around Irvine. Salt and road grime wreak havoc on your paint job and can lead to body rust – so regular washing is very important. Also, a good quality waxing is recommended at least twice a year.

Give us a call for more information:

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center
1749 Anaheim Avenue
COSTA MESA, CA 92627
949.645.7878

10 Services COSTA MESA motorists Often Overlook

We live such busy lives nowadays: work, social events, running the kids all over COSTA MESA. Some days it’s all we can do to keep track of everywhere we need to be. That’s why you’ve gotta be organized. Smartphones, calendar apps – we have to keep track of it all.

So let’s talk about schedules. Specifically, automotive service schedules. And particularly, the essential scheduled services that are sometimes forgotten.

Here is a list of 10 service items that are often overlooked by COSTA MESA auto owners. They’re all very important and need appropriate attention. So here we go, in no particular order.

1. Power Steering Service
Be honest; have you ever thought of this on your own? Your power steering fluid gets dirty and builds-up moisture over time. Cleaning out your power steering system means that dirt and gum are removed and your critical power steering parts are protected from harmful corrosion. Next time you’re in for an oil change, ask your COSTA MESA service advisor if it’s time for a power steering check-up.

2. Wheel Alignment
When your wheels are out of alignment your sedan pulls to one side. It’s pretty annoying, but it’s also dangerous. And it causes your tires to wear out really fast; which is an unneccessary expense! Most auto makers owners manuals suggest you get your alignment checked once or twice a year.

3. Differential Service
Did you even know you had a differential? Well, you do – one, two or three in fact. Differentials are often called gear boxes and they’re part of the drive-train that transfers power from your sedan engine to your wheels. They don’t need service that often, but you can’t completely forget them. Check with your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center tech.

4. Cabin Air Filter
More and more COSTA MESA cars these days have cabin air filters (a great feature, in my opinion) to clean the air in the passenger area where we sit. They filter out dust and pollen. When they’re clogged up, they can get smelly. Change your cabin air filter on schedule to enjoy fresh, clean air, which can also help with allergies.

5. Timing Belt Replacement
Most cars and some vans and trucks driven around the COSTA MESA area have timing belts. Without going into a lot of detail, let’s just say that your car won’t run without it – period. And if it breaks while you’re driving it can do thousands of dollars worth of expensive engine damage. Check your owners’ manual or with your COSTA MESA service advisor. If you’re approaching 60,000 miles; definitely look into it right away.

6. Transmission Service
Transmission serviceis very basic, but it’s often forgotten by COSTA MESA motorists. Your sedan transmission needs clean fluid from time to time to keep operating efficiently and avoid pricey repairs. And it can also improve your fuel economy.

7. Air Conditioning Service
Most of us COSTA MESA auto owners don’t think about our air conditioning until it fails on a hot day in COSTA MESA. If you’re lucky, you just need to add refrigerant. If you’re not, some of the components may have been ruined. Of course, these components are not cheap. Regular air conditioning service at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center in COSTA MESA adds clean refrigerant which cools and lubricates your air conditioner and conditions the seals.

8. Brake Service
No we’re not talking about squealing, grinding brakes here. We’re talking brake fluid. Over time the fluid gets a lot of water in it. Because water compresses differently than the brake fluid, your brakes won’t work as well. It may even get dangerous. The water can also rust out brake system components and then your brakes can fail altogether. Check with your Costa Mesa Auto Service Center technician for recommendations.

9. Coolant System
Another thing that’s so easy for COSTA MESA drivers to forget about: When you don’t change your antifreeze on schedule it becomes corrosive. Fresh coolant contains additives that maintain the pH balance in the coolant. These additives wear out and the fluid in the radiator can actually eat holes in the radiator or hoses. Then you’re stranded – bummer.

10. Fuel System Cleaning
In these times of high fuel prices, fuel system cleaning is vital. Fuel gums up a bunch of parts as it moves from the gas tank and through the engine. A thorough fuel system cleaning at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center in COSTA MESA will keep clean gas flowing into the engine. Your fuel injectors also get gunked up over time and need to be cleaned. Having your fuel system cleaned on schedule at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center will really help your fuel economy.

There you have it; 10 services that are often overlooked. Did you know that a recent survey showed that 90 percent of vehicles on the road have at least one scheduled maintenance service that hasn’t been performed? Considering our busy lives, we’re not surprised.

COSTA MESA car owners know it takes some thought and effort to actually maintain a vehicle; but it not only saves money in the long run – it saves time too. And we can all use a little more time.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center can help with any of these services. Give us a call at 949.645.7878.

Busted: The Maintenance-Free Myth In Huntington Beach

There’s a segment of the Huntington Beach population that’s not committed to proper vehicle maintenance. Mistaken perceptions have crept into the CA area over time. Many Huntington Beach motorists think the root lies in the fact that modern cars are so reliable. Reliability has improved dramatically in recent years. Quality surveys report fewer problems with new cars than ever before.

Back when cars spent more time in the repair shop, Huntington Beach drivers were more mindful of routine service. Now, it’s much easier to put it off.

Take tune-ups for example. In the days of mechanical ignition systems, an engine needed to be tuned-up every couple of years. The ignition points had to be replaced, spark plugs and coils replaced and the timing adjusted. If your engine was out of tune, you knew it. It ran poorly and got bad fuel economy.

Costa Mesa The Maintenance-Free MythNow, the ignition system in your sedan is electronic and controlled by the engine management computer. Spark plugs rarely get fouled and will last for as much as a hundred thousand miles. So tune-ups used to force you in to Costa Mesa Auto Service Center for service and while you were there you just took care of whatever else was on the list.

Also, in recent years, a large percentage of new cars in Huntington Beach have been leased. These folks plan on turning the car in after two or three years, so they haven’t focused on the maintenance that helps your car last longer.

Given all that, what’s the benefit to keeping up with factory scheduled maintenance? Well, your sedan will perform better and return better fuel economy.

Those benefits pay for themselves as they go along. The big plus is that major repairs are prevented. And these aren’t just repairs that are a long ways off. Modern sedan engines are far more sophisticated and have many parts that are in critical need of proper lubrication. Missing just one oil change can allow oil sludge to start forming. Sludge clogs small engine passages, robbing parts of the lubrication they need. An expensive failure could easily occur within two or three years.

And modern engines require more sophisticated fluids. Because of the different types of materials that are used to make auto parts, things like aluminum, plastics and steel, different types of additives are required to protect automotive components from corrosion. These additives deplete with time as well as with use.

For example, your sedan engine coolant could actually become so corrosive that it eats holes in your radiator or other cooling system parts. Of course, that could lead to massive engine damage, all for the want of replacing the coolant on schedule.

Taking care of the little things now prevents big problems later. At Costa Mesa Auto Service Center, we have been taking care of all those little things for 20 years. Your sedan still needs to be taken care of – it’s just that some of those points of care have changed with automotive advancements. The need for proper maintenance in Huntington Beach did not go away.

Keep Your COSTA MESA Car Breathing Free: Engine Air Filter


Hey COSTA MESA motorists – this is something really amazing: For every gallon of gas your sedan burns, it uses 12,000 gallons of air. All of that air has to be filtered to keep your engine clean.

That’s like a hundred gallons of air every block! The engine air filter is just another example of a very essential but inexpensive part that has to do a tremendous amount of work. And when it works, everything goes well. But, when it doesn’t, well, it can lead to expensive problems. Of course, your auto maker recommends how often to change your air filter. But like most service intervals, where and how you drive your car in CA affects when your filter needs to be changed.

Dusty conditions around Irvine or polluted city driving means you’ll need to change your filter more often. Your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center service advisor can check your filter for you. In fact, it’s often a routine part of an oil change.

When you think about it, a clogged air filter won’t allow as much air through as a clean filter. Your sedan needs this air to efficiently burn its fuel, giving you better fuel economy and performance.

Dirtier filters don’t work as well as clean ones. A filter can only hold so much, after that, it allows dirt to pass right into your engine. Air filters come in all shapes and sizes. They also come in different grades. There are high performance air filters available for most cars. These high performance filters are a little more pricey in COSTA MESA, but they increase horsepower and may improve MPG to boot.

So it’s vital for COSTA MESA drivers to have their air filter checked. If it needs replacing, it doesn’t cost very much at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center in COSTA MESA and it should easily pay for itself in better MPG before your next oil change.

Stop by Costa Mesa Auto Service Center at 1749 Anaheim Avenue, COSTA MESA, CA 92627, and we’ll take a look at your air filter for you. Feel free to give us a call at 949.645.7878 to make an appointment.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center
1749 Anaheim Avenue
COSTA MESA, CA 92627
949.645.7878

Another Couple of Years: Making Your Vehicle Last With Help From Costa Mesa Auto Service Center

A while back, the Cash for Clunkers program was all over the CA news. COSTA MESA people could trade in their old vehicle for a new one that got better fuel economy and receive a government rebate.

A lot of COSTA MESA motorists had so-called clunkers that they wanted to keep. They’re good commuters, COSTA MESA grocery getters or toy haulers. They enjoy that fact that they’re paid off, or soon will be. They would gladly like to keep their sedans for 200,000 miles or more – as long as it’s economical to do so.

There are plenty of COSTA MESA drivers whose vehicles are running after 150,000 or 200,000 miles. We can learn from what they’re doing to keep our own sedans on the road in CA.

The wise COSTA MESA auto owners of high-mileage cars often report a common denominator of never skipping an oil change.

Another Couple of Years: Making Your Vehicle Last At Costa Mesa Auto Service CenterThat may sound a bit unsophisticated, but it’s really not. First off, oil is the life blood of your sedan’s engine and it needs to be clean to properly lubricate. Skipping oil changes leads to clogged oil filters and sludge that is detrimental for your engine.

There’s another essential reason why the scheduled oil change is so important for COSTA MESA car owners. It’s simple – a Costa Mesa Auto Service Center professional is going to be looking at your car. All of your fluid levels will be inspected and topped off so they won’t get so low that damage can be done. If there is a significant fluid loss, let’s use brake fluid as an example, your Costa Mesa Auto Service Center technician can look for the cause of the loss and find the problem before it leads to an accident or costly repair.

Your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center tech will also visually inspect your sedan for worn belts and hoses, uneven tire wear, leaking shock absorbers and more. Problems get addressed before they lead to repairs that cost more than the car’s worth.

And your Costa Mesa Auto Service Center advisor will be able to remind you of other critical services that the factory recommends you get done. Just think of that oil change the same way as you do about going to your COSTA MESA dentist for your six month cleaning and checkup. Don’t skip it.

Realistically, things are going to wear out as your sedan gets older. On the way to 200,000 miles you’ll go through several batteries, probably a couple of alternators and water pumps, a set of shocks and likely some brake rotors.

Of course, these things cost some income, but they are less pricey than new sedan payments in COSTA MESA. With proper service at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center in COSTA MESA and regular inspections, you’ll keep surprise repairs to a minimum and more cash in your wallet.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center On Your Serpentine Belt

Today we’re going to be talking about serpentine belts for our COSTA MESA, CA customers. Let’s start by talking about the accessories that are driven by the serpentine belt. First is the alternator. That’s the critical device that makes electricity to power the sedan and recharge the battery. Then there’s the air conditioning compressor that makes cool air for you while you’re driving around CA in the summer.

The power steering and power brake pumps are driven by the serpentine belt in most COSTA MESA motorists’ vehicles. Those pumps provide critical pressure that assists your steering and braking.

In many sedans, the water pump is driven by the serpentine belt. The water pump is what circulates the coolant that protects your engine. In some cars around COSTA MESA, CA, the water pump is driven by the timing belt.

The radiator cooling fans on some sedans are also driven by the serpentine belt. Some have separate electric motors. That’s really a lot of critical work for one belt.

But modern engine design has a single belt that snakes around the front of the engine and drives most if not all of these accessories. Serpentine belts do a lot of essential work, but they’re tough and can last COSTA MESA drivers for thousands of miles.

Just how long will they last? That’ll vary for each individual car in the COSTA MESA, CA area. Your automobile manufacturer will have a recommendation for when it should be changed, but it could need it sooner. The good news is that a visual inspection at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center can detect a belt that’s getting close to failing.

Your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center service specialist can look at the belt: if it has more than three or four cracks per inch, it needs to be replaced. A deep crack that’s more than half the depth of the belt – replace. Frayed, missing pieces, a shiny glazed look? Toss it.

What’s involved in replacing the belt at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center? First the old belt is removed. Then a new one is fitted around all the pulleys for the accessories and the drive. There’s a special pulley called a tensioner.

This pulley is mounted to the engine block with a spring loaded arm. Its vital job is to apply the correct amount of tension to the belt to keep it from getting loose and maybe slipping off. Because the spring in the tensioner pulley wears out, AutoNetTV and the automotive professionals at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center recommend COSTA MESA drivers replace them at the same time as the belt. It just makes sense.

What are the warning signs that there’s a problem with the serpentine belt? You may hear a squealing sound from under the hood when accelerating around our COSTA MESA streets. A loose belt might give you a slow, slapping sound.

What do you do if your belt breaks? If you’ve actually had that happen on a busy Irvine expressway, it can be a little scary. The first thing COSTA MESA car owners usually notice is that they have no power steering or power brakes. Don’t panic – you can still steer and brake, but you’ll have to do the work. It’ll be harder to steer and you’ll need more time and effort to stop, so plan accordingly.

Your dashboard will light up will all kinds of warnings. You’ll see a warning about your cooling system if you have a water pump that’s driven by the serpentine belt. This is vital because without your cooling system working, your engine will overheat. If you don’t stop you’ll have massive engine damage, maybe to the point that you need a new engine. Open your windows and turn the heater on full blast to provide a little engine cooling. Pull over as quickly as you safely can!

The battery light will come on because the alternator isn’t working. If your car’s water pump isn’t driven by the serpentine belt, you’re not in danger of overheating so you can drive a little further if necessary. But the battery will run down to the point where the car will just shut off. You don’t want that to happen while you’re driving in our local COSTA MESA, CA traffic.

Remember, COSTA MESA auto owners can avoid this stressful scenario if they replace their sedan serpentine belt on schedule. Ask your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center technician to check your belts and hoses from time to time so you can take care of them if they need to be replaced prematurely.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center
1749 Anaheim Avenue
COSTA MESA, CA 92627
949.645.7878

Busting Automotive Myths In COSTA MESA CA

Myths passed around our COSTA MESA CA community start with a grain of evidence and are then built up with a lot of imagination and very elastic logic. And the internet is a breeding ground for automotive myths. Some bloggers recall the sedans of yesteryear and declare their modern decedents to be virtually maintenance free and that anyone who says otherwise is out to rip you off.

To get the truth about auto myths you hear around the COSTA MESA area, come over to Costa Mesa Auto Service Center.
You’ll find us at 1749 Anaheim Avenue, COSTA MESA, CA 92627.
Give us a call at 949.645.7878 to make an appointment for your next auto service.

Let’s examine a couple of the more popular rants and look at the truth behind them.

The first one is that the chassis no longer needs lubrication for suspension, steering and the driveline. They declare that anyone who has charged you for lubrication is a charlatan.

The truth on which this myth is based is that many new cars come from the factory with sealed joints and cannot be greased. However, there are still some grease points on many cars around COSTA MESA. A grease fitting may have been installed in conjunction with a repair. And most trucks and truck-based SUVs driving in COSTA MESA still require chassis lubrication. This is because they are more heavy duty and proper greasing is still required to keep them going.

Another common rant you’ll hear around COSTA MESA is that modern cars don’t need tune-ups. That depends on your definition of a ‘tune-up’, which has changed as technology has progressed. Before engine control computers, electronic ignition and fuel injection, a tune up meant replacing mechanical parts that wore out. Costa Mesa Auto Service Center would manually adjust fuel and air mix and timing. When these adjustments were off, spark plugs would foul and need to be replaced.

This definition just doesn’t apply to modern vehicles. Service centers like Costa Mesa Auto Service Center generally consider a tune-up to be the major service visit, recommended by your manufacturer, every 30,000 miles or so.

Of course you can’t lubricate a sealed joint. Of course you can’t adjust a carburetor if your car doesn’t have one. You probably don’t need to change spark plugs every year if your manufacturer says they can go 30,000 miles. What are these bloggers getting so worked up about?

The danger with these modern-day myths, is that they prevent people in our local COSTA MESA community from taking care of the routine preventive auto maintenance that manufactures recommend. Check out this partial list of things you still need to do to take care of your car. How many of them are really any different today than they were 20 or 30 years ago?

Oil change, cooling system service, transmission service, tire balancing, tire rotation, wheel alignment, suspension service, power steering service, proper tire inflation, brake service, differential service, battery maintenance, engine air filer, PCV valve, breather element, fuel filter, belts, hoses, timing belt, windshield wipers . . .

You get the picture. Your sedan is still a machine that needs to be maintained. And, hey, your service advisors at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center have always adapted to keep pace with automotive technology. Next time you come across an angry voice about your car care, talk to your COSTA MESA service advisor at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center, or do some research of your own.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center Maintenance Tips: The Belt Goes On

Today’s Costa Mesa Auto Service Center auto maintenance article focuses on your serpentine belt. Your serpentine belt is a long belt that’s driven by your engine. It winds around several accessories that power vital automotive systems. Let’s go over them.

First, the serpentine belt drives your sedan air conditioning system. It spins the compressor that makes the cool air that takes the edge off the summer heat in Irvine.

Next, the belt powers the alternator. The alternator creates electricity that’s used by your sedan’s electrical systems and also charges your car battery. Costa Mesa Auto Service Center Maintenance Tips The Belt Goes OnAll Irvine drivers know that without the alternator, the battery will go dead in a few miles.

The serpentine belt may also run the pumps for both the power steering and power brakes. And, on many sedans, the serpentine belt powers the water pump. The water pump circulates coolant through the engine to keep it within normal operating temperatures for Irvine auto owners. (On some sedans, the water pump is powered by the timing belt instead of the serpentine belt.)

So you can see the serpentine belt does a lot of work. And it if breaks, it affects a lot of systems. That’s why vehicle manufacturers and your service advisor at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center have recommended that it be changed every so often so that it doesn’t fail.

Your
considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center service professional can perform a visual inspection of the belt to see if it has any cracks that signal the belt could fail soon and will measure the amount of belt material to make sure there is enough.

Your serpentine belt works in tandem with a spring loaded pulley attached to the engine called the tensioner pulley. Its vital job is to make sure there’s a constant tension on the serpentine belt so that it doesn’t slip. The spring can become worn and no longer provide the necessary pressure to keep the belt tight. At Costa Mesa Auto Service Center, we recommend that the tensioner be replaced at the same time as the serpentine belt.

All in all, the serpentine belt’s a critical art for the function of your sedan. And it’s not that pricey to replace at Costa Mesa Auto Service Center – so bring in your vehicle if it hasn’t been checked in a while.

COSTA MESA Drivers Severe Service Maintenance Schedules

Since driving requirements and lifestyles differ among COSTA MESA car owners, sedan vehicle manufacturers publish two auto maintenance schedules: the regular schedule and the severe service schedule. Which schedule should COSTA MESA drivers follow?
Here are some questions to ask yourself:

Are most of your trips less than four miles around COSTA MESA?
Are most of your trips less than 10 miles in below-zero CA temps?
Are most of your trips off-highway in CA?
Do you drive often in dusty Irvine areas?
Do you regularly tow a trailer or carry heavy loads around COSTA MESA?
Do you drive in very hot or very cold CA weather?

Think about your typical week. Do you live by your nearest COSTA MESA expressway on-ramp and enjoy a non-stop commute to Irvine or Huntington Beach? Or, do you drive the neighborhood car pool in stop-and-go traffic on COSTA MESA surface streets?

Let’s suppose your owner’s manual says the severe service oil change recommendation is 3,000 miles and the standard recommendation is 5,000 miles. You know that you need to change the oil somewhere between 3,000 and 5,000 miles. Analyze your driving patterns and COSTA MESA weather and road conditions to determine which end of the spectrum you’re closer to.

Why should COSTA MESA motorists care about this? Normal condensation causes moisture accumulation in the engine oil. Short trips around COSTA MESA or winter driving means that the engine doesn’t heat up enough for the moisture to evaporate. The water in the oil turns to detrimental oil sludge that clogs up your engine and doesn’t let the oil protect it adequately. That’s why CA auto owners need to change their oil more often – to clean the sludge out before it causes problems.

Carrying heavy loads (with or without a trailer) in warm CA summer weather causes your engine and transmission to run at higher temperatures and with more stress. The fluids will break down more quickly. Additives that clean and prevent dangerous corrosion will be depleted sooner. Air pollution and dust cause fluids to get dirty faster. Ditto for filters. All of these things can lead to premature wear and eventual repairs, not to mention your fuel efficiency. If you want some expert advice, talk with your considerate Costa Mesa Auto Service Center advisor. We can help you restore your sedan to good working order and help you know the best schedule to follow.

To learn more, watch our informative AutoNetTV auto video tips at the top of this post.

Costa Mesa Auto Service Center
949.645.7878
1749 Anaheim Avenue
COSTA MESA, CA 92627