Pacific Highway Auto Repair: Good Service and Good Fuel Economy

Most San Diego auto owners want to save on gas and seek our advice on improving economy. At Pacific Highway Auto Repair, we are frequently asked, however, if it is really worth the extra effort. Just how much money can San Diego drivers actually save?In today's Pacific Highway Auto Repair article, we're focusing on the things you can do to improve your vehicle’s economydriving around CA. We'll tell you the potential savings per gallon of gas at $3.50, and we'll show a chart that also shows the savings at $3.00 and $4.00.   DOLLARS PER GALLON $3.00 / $3.50 / $4.00 TUNE UP 4%.12.14.16 The next item is replacing a clogged engine air filter. Your engine needs enough air to burn fuel efficiently for the best mileage. A clean air filter means you get plenty of air. The fact that the air's clean protects your engine. That can save you up to 10 percent or 35 cents a gallon.   DOLLARS PER GALLO ... read more


Fuel System

The Harm in Skipping an Oil Change for San Diego Drivers

People in San Diego have been hearing a lot about higher oil change intervals these days. Maybe you're wondering: What are the key issues?Some new vehicle manufacturers are now recommending much higher oil change intervals than they have in the past. As much as 5,000 to 8,000 miles (8,000 km to 13,000 km) or more. This practice came under scrutiny when four of the largest new vehicle manufacturers announced that owners like those in San Diego were experiencing engine damage resulting from these higher oil change intervals.The manufacturers' standard oil drain service for particular vehicles was scheduled at around 7,500 miles/12,000 km. People following these recommendations were experiencing engine damage. It turns out that oil sludge was building up. This caused small oil passages to clog and engine parts to fail.What causes oil sludge? It's a factor of time and mileage. There are hot spots in every engine that cause oil burn off that leads to sludge ... read more



Brake Service at Pacific Highway Auto Repair in San Diego

Brakes really aren't optional equipment for San Diego drivers' vehicles. And taking care of them isn't optional either.A regular brake inspection is on every CA driver's vehicle maintenance schedule. At Pacific Highway Auto Repair, our team will check your brake system and let you know if there are any problems. Of course, if you're having trouble with your brakes, get your car into your San Diego service center right away. And watch out for these problems: Low or spongy brake pedal Hard brake pedal A brake warning light that stays on Constantly squealing or grinding brakes Vibrations or clunking sounds when you apply your brakes There are two types of brakes: disc and drum. Disc brakes have a rotor that's attached to the axle. Calipers straddle the rotor, kind of like the brakes on a bicycle. Drum brakes are more common on back wheels. Pads, called shoes, push against the inside of the drum to slow the vehicle.There are several things that need to be service ... read more



The Economy of Maintenance for San Diego Drivers

Do I keep my old vehicle or buy a new one? It's a question most San Diego drivers ask themselves at some time or another.Generally, what it comes down to is the choice between a car payment and the possibility of repair bills. Most of the time, we want to choose the car payment because we don't like the inconvenience and uncertainty of vehicle repairs. But that payment has a detrimental effect on our budget and bank is a great website to help you with your decision. This site uses repair histories to calculate the average repair bills for specific makes and models of cars. You can plug in the information for your vehicle and get an estimate on what it will probably cost you to continue owning that vehicle.Now, isn't a crystal ball. It can't know what will happen to your specific vehicle. But it can guide you in knowing how much money to budget for the repair and maintenance of your vehicle ... read more

Fall and Spring Checkup in San Diego

When I was a kid, my dad always made sure he took the cars in for Spring and Fall checkups. I was telling a friend that it's about time to get into Pacific Highway Auto Repair for a checkup and he said that he read on the internet that modern cars don't need seasonal service.My friend is (technically) right about some things, but from a practical standpoint, a seasonal check up still makes sense.Back when my dad was teaching me about how to take care of the family vehicle, most of them used a different weight of oil in the winter and in the summer. But most of today's modern engines run the same oil year round. High-tech engines and high-tech motor oils are better able to handle the seasonal changes.Your owner's manual or San Diego service advisor at Pacific Highway Auto Repair can tell you the right oil to use.Of course, you're concerned about the coolant or antifreeze. You don't want to overheat in the CA summer ... read more



Watching Your Check Engine Light

Did you know that most of the cars driving around San Diego, CA, carry more computer power than the Apollo 121 Lunar Module that landed on the moon in 1969?New cars sold in the San Diego area have as many as 12 networked computers and over five miles (eight kilometers) of wiring. In fact, for the last decade or so, auto computers have been controlling about 85 percent of your vehicle's functions.Cars have sensors for manifold air temperature, coolant temperature, manifold air pressure, airflow, throttle position, vehicle speed and oxygen content. All of this electronic wizardry is pretty complicated. So how do San Diego drivers know when there is a problem?It's simple; the Check Engine light comes on. The computer monitors all the sensors and uses that information to decide what to adjust such as the fuel mix, spark timing and idle speed. In addition, the computer monitors its own circuits. When it finds a fault, it turns on the Check Engine light and stores a trouble code in the ... read more



Fuel Saving Tip: Tire Pressure Saves Fuel in San Diego

Underinflated tires waste gas for lots of folks in the San Diego area. Think how hard it is to walk in sand – you just have to work harder because of the resistance. When your tires don't have enough air in them, their rolling resistance is dramatically increased and it simply takes more gas to get from here to there.Always check your tire pressure when you gas up at one of our local San Diego service stations. If they're low – even just a little bit – bring them up to proper pressure. There's a sticker on the inside of your driver's door that gives the manufacturer's recommended tire pressure.And don't rely on your tire pressure monitoring system to alert you to when you need more air. The TPMS system is set to warn you when pressure drops 20 percent below recommendations. That's severely underinflated and you needed more air a long time ago. And if you have a slow leak – get it fixed right away at Pacific Highway Auto Repair ... read more


Tires and Wheels

Straight and True in San Diego: Wheel Alignment

Most San Diego folks worry about running out of gas or having a breakdown on the side of the road. That is why we practice preventive maintenance on our vehicles — that and to keep our repair bills down. But one important part of preventive maintenance that may get overlooked by drivers in San Diego is a periodic alignment inspection. Poor alignment causes tires to wear rapidly, unevenly or both. This means they will have to be replaced early, and new tires are more expensive than an alignment check in San Diego. Bad alignment can also cause damage to suspension and steering systems, which can be expensive to repair in San Diego. Tire wear on misaligned wheels can also lead to blowouts, which are dangerous, can lead to serious accidents and can seriously damage your vehicle. Also, poor alignment itself can be the cause of an accident since the vehicle may not steer properly. One or more wheels on your vehicle can be knocked out ... read more



Breathe Free in San Diego: Cabin Air Filter Replacement at Pacific Highway Auto Repair

There are a lot of new features, both optional and standard, on San Diego drivers' vehicles these days. One you may not have heard of is called a cabin air filter. Simply put, its job is to keep the air in the passenger compartment of your car nice and clean.A cabin air filter is similar to the filter you use on your furnace at home in San Diego. Cabin air filters can catch particles down to three microns. By comparison, a grain of sand is 200 microns. So cabin air filters are effective against dust, dirt, pollen, mold spores and most pollutants in our San Diego area atmosphere. Good news if you suffer from any types of allergies, or if you live in an area in CA prone to air pollution.Cabin air filters are generally located in the engine compartment or under the dashboard. They can be tricky to access and replace, so you'll probably want to go to your friendly and knowledgeable service advisor at Pacific Highway Aut ... read more


Cabin Air Filter

Drive Defensively in CA

Car care is part of auto safety in San Diego. But the most important thing we can do to improve safety on CA roads is to drive safely.Defensive driving begins with the proper attitude. Have in mind that you won't let anyone take your safety away from you. You'll be aware of your surroundings, road conditions, other vehicles and hazards. And the first person to be concerned with is you: start with your own environment.Don't leave without securing all occupants including children and pets. Watch for loose items that can become projectiles during evasive maneuvers.Driving too fast or too slow increases the chance of an accident.Never drive impaired: Alcohol is a factor in half of all fatal crashes. Never drink and drive.Other impairments include being sleepy, angry, daydreaming or talking. If you suddenly wonder how you got where you are – you're not paying enough attention.Keep your windows clean and uncluttered. No fuzzy dice and stickers.Keep your car i ... read more