Video Blog

The The Car Doctors of the Antelope Valley Basic Guide To Synthetic Oil

Feb 26, 2018

Synthetic motor oil has been around for a long time, and more and more new vehicles are leaving factories with synthetic in their engines. But a lot of drivers don't really know much about it.

Let's start with conventional oil – the kind folks are used to. Conventional oil is made up of naturally occurring hydrocarbon chains, which means its molecules are long and have various lengths. Like a pile of pencils, some of them new and some of them used.

Synthetic oil is man-made. Its molecules are more uniform and regular in shape – more similar to marbles than pencils. Some synthetic oil starts with a petroleum base that's modified and others are entirely synthesized from other materials.

Synthetic motor oil works better in both hot and cold temperatures. It's more chemically stable so it doesn't readily evaporate or break down in the high heat produced inside your vehicle engine. This means it resists turning to sludge, which is a real engine killer.

Remember that marbles and pencils thing we were talking about? Well, that makes synthetic oil slipperier than conventional oil which means less friction in your engine. Your vehicle engine runs cooler, wears less and lasts longer. You also get a boost in power and maybe even an improvement in fuel economy.

Synthetic oil also lasts longer so you change it less often – which is great for the environment. With longer oil change intervals, you need an oil filter specifically built for the longer service life of synthetic oil. Talk with your friendly and knowledgeable The Car Doctors of the Antelope Valley service adviser about synthetic oil and synthetic blends – they might be just what you need to improve engine performance and extend the life of your vehicle.

Give us a call.

The Car Doctors of the Antelope Valley
226 West Avenue I
Lancaster, California 93534
661-949-8484
http://cardoctorsav.autovideotipsblog.com


The Edible Engine

Feb 20, 2018

You may have had a friend whose vehicle was the victim of hungry rodents.  After all, mice, rats and squirrels—even rabbits—have been known to gnaw on wires in engine compartments, causing vehicle electrical systems to go haywire.  They can disable a vehicle completely and be very expensive to fix.

In 2017, some drivers noticed their vehicle's wiring was being chewed and found out the automaker was using a relatively new material for covering their wires: soy.  Many of the repairs to their new vehicles weren't covered under warranty by the manufacturer when it was discovered rodents were eating the wiring.  So the owners filed a class action suit, saying the soy covering was essentially baiting the critters. 

The automakers tell a different story, saying mice, rats and squirrels have been chewing through wire insulation long before it was made out of soy. 

Regardless of what the insulation is made of, vehicle owners should make sure rodents aren't chowing down and creating a problem in the engine compartment.  They can have their repair facility check for these signs:  Little bits of acorns, leaves, chewed up plastic and animal droppings in the engine's nooks and crannies.  Using a black light, your technician can detect animal urine, a sure sign that they've been using your engine compartment as a warm apartment, a nest and a dining room. 

You can take steps to prevent rodents from chomping your vehicle's parts.  Honda—one of the vehicle manufacturers that uses soy-based wiring covering—makes a rodent tape.  It contains a spice called capsaicin that rodents find too hot to handle.  Other preventative measures include installing metal mesh around wiring harnesses or spraying the engine compartment with special rodent-repellants. 

Rodent damage can cost one vehicle owner thousands of dollars to fix, not the kind of bite anyone wants taken out of their bank account. 

The Car Doctors of the Antelope Valley
226 West Avenue I
Lancaster, California 93534
661-949-8484
http://cardoctorsav.autovideotipsblog.com


Fuel for Thought

Feb 11, 2018

If you're like most people and drive a gasoline-powered vehicle, you need to be up to speed on its fuel-related components.  They're pretty basic: the fuel, the fuel filter and the fuel pump.

The fuel's the easy part.  You probably gas up your vehicle yourself and, if you're like most drivers, price is a big factor in what you put in your vehicle. Maybe you think it doesn't matter what kind of gasoline you buy, but one major automobile association has found it does make a big difference. 

Their study showed that the additives that are put in different brands can affect your vehicle's performance.  Certain gasoline retailers sell gasoline that meets performance standards called Top Tier.  The detergents used in Top Tier gasoline help protect newer engines from carbon buildup and deposits on intake valves, all things that can affect how smoothly your engine runs, how it accelerates and what kind of fuel economy you get.  You can check online or ask your service advisor where to buy Top Tier gasoline.

Another fairly simple component is the fuel filter. Depending on the age of your vehicle, you either have a separate fuel filter or one that's part of the fuel pump.  The fuel filter keeps the crud out of your engine's fuel injectors.  You'll get a hint that your fuel filter might be clogged if you notice your vehicle won't start, your power isn't what it used to be, your fuel economy is suffering or your Check Engine light is on.

Check with your service advisor to see what your vehicle manufacturer's recommendations are on how often to service your fuel filter.  Regular maintenance can prevent expensive repairs in the future. 

Finally, the most complicated part: the fuel pump.  As you may have guessed, it is the part that gets the gasoline out of the tank and into the engine.  If the fuel pump starts to fail, it can make a clicking or whining noise when your vehicle is running.  Your engine may misfire, lose power while driving or might be hard to start in the morning.  And that Check Engine light might go on.  One thing that helps prolong the life of a fuel pump is keeping your gas tank at least a quarter-tank full at all times.  It helps lubricate and cool the pump.  If you've detected some of the symptoms of fuel pump failure, tell your service advisor.

Knowing a little about your fuel system really can be a gas!

The Car Doctors of the Antelope Valley
226 West Avenue I
Lancaster, California 93534
661-949-8484
http://cardoctorsav.autovideotipsblog.com


Wasteful Thinking

Feb 06, 2018

With the weather getting colder, you might be tempted to start your vehicle up, let it idle for 15 or 20 minutes and then get in the nice, cozy cabin.  Some vehicles offer remote starting that let you do that from the comfort of your home or apartment.  But is letting your vehicle idle like that good for it?

Manufacturers say it doesn't harm the vehicle.  They say it's because modern vehicles are made differently from those in the past.  Just about all newer vehicles employ fuel injection which uses computers to adjust the amount of gasoline that goes into the cylinders.  The engine gets only the fuel it needs, taking conditions into account.

Older vehicles, on the other hand, used to use carburetors.  When you started a cold engine, the carburetor wasn't able to adjust the gasoline amount depending on conditions.  Some of the gasoline would mix with oil and the pistons wouldn't get the same lubrication as they would with undiluted oil.

So yes, you can warm up your newer vehicle for your own personal comfort.  But consider how much fuel you are wasting.  That is not only throwing away money, it's a waste of natural resources.  And it puts more carbon into the atmosphere. 

Automakers have to be mindful of what fuel economy their vehicles can achieve.  So the flip side of the remote starts they offer is a "stop-start" feature.  When you stop your vehicle, even at a stoplight, your vehicle will turn the engine off.  When you take your foot off the brake and step on the accelerator, it starts up right away.  That feature can save as much as 10 percent of the fuel your vehicle uses. 

Your vehicle may not have that start-stop feature, but you can still save fuel by shutting off your engine manually if you are waiting somewhere, like a parking lot or perhaps sitting outside your child's school waiting to pick him or her up.  It saves you money and contributes to a healthier atmosphere for our planet.

The Car Doctors of the Antelope Valley
226 West Avenue I
Lancaster, California 93534
661-949-8484
http://cardoctorsav.autovideotipsblog.com



Archive

May 2010 (4)
June 2010 (5)
July 2010 (3)
August 2010 (4)
September 2010 (5)
October 2010 (2)
November 2010 (3)
December 2010 (4)
January 2011 (4)
February 2011 (3)
March 2011 (5)
April 2011 (4)
May 2011 (4)
June 2011 (5)
July 2011 (4)
August 2011 (4)
September 2011 (4)
October 2011 (3)
November 2011 (3)
December 2011 (5)
January 2012 (4)
February 2012 (5)
March 2012 (4)
April 2012 (4)
May 2012 (5)
June 2012 (4)
July 2012 (5)
August 2012 (4)
September 2012 (4)
October 2012 (4)
November 2012 (5)
December 2012 (4)
January 2013 (5)
February 2013 (19)
March 2013 (4)
April 2013 (5)
May 2013 (3)
June 2013 (4)
July 2013 (4)
August 2013 (5)
September 2013 (4)
October 2013 (5)
November 2013 (4)
December 2013 (4)
January 2014 (2)
February 2014 (4)
March 2014 (1)
June 2014 (2)
July 2014 (4)
August 2014 (5)
September 2014 (5)
October 2014 (4)
November 2014 (4)
December 2014 (4)
January 2015 (5)
February 2015 (4)
March 2015 (5)
April 2015 (4)
May 2015 (2)
June 2015 (5)
July 2015 (2)
September 2015 (3)
October 2015 (4)
November 2015 (4)
December 2015 (3)
February 2016 (11)
March 2016 (4)
April 2016 (4)
May 2016 (5)
June 2016 (4)
July 2016 (4)
August 2016 (5)
September 2016 (4)
October 2016 (5)
November 2016 (4)
December 2016 (4)
January 2017 (5)
February 2017 (4)
March 2017 (4)
April 2017 (2)
May 2017 (3)
June 2017 (4)
July 2017 (5)
August 2017 (3)
September 2017 (1)
January 2018 (5)
February 2018 (4)
March 2018 (2)

Categories


Air Conditioning (11)
Alignment (13)
Alternator (1)
Auto Safety (2)
Automotive News (8)
Battery (10)
Brakes (9)
Cabin Air Filter (7)
Check Engine Light (2)
Cooling System (11)
Dashboard (2)
Diagnostics (6)
Diesel Maintenance (2)
Differential Service (3)
Drive Train (7)
Emergency Items (1)
Engine Air Filter (2)
Exhaust (7)
Fluids (15)
Fuel Economy (7)
Fuel Filter (1)
Fuel Pump (1)
Fuel Saving Tip: Dirty Oil (1)
Fuel Saving Tip: Slow Down (1)
Fuel System (45)
Headlamps (2)
Inspection (5)
Keys to a long lasting vehicle (4)
Maintenance (52)
Making Your Vehicle Last (1)
Monitoring System (3)
Oil Change (1)
Older Vehicles (3)
Parts (9)
Safety (6)
Serpentine Belt (3)
Service Intervals (9)
Service Standards (12)
Shocks & Struts (6)
Steering (9)
Suspension (2)
Timing Belt (8)
Tires and Wheels (43)
Transmission (7)
Warranty (1)
What Customers Should Know (9)
Windshield Wipers (6)