Posted by & filed under Serpentine Belt.

What’s A Serpentine Belt?All of us in San Diego have those days when we’ve got a bunch of errands to run around the Poway and Rancho Santa Fe area. Suppose on your day off you need to get gas, pick up some groceries, swing by your San Diego ATM and get the kids from school. Now you could make four trips, but that would be a waste of time and money – totally inefficient. Instead you get organized and hit the ATM first and get some gas next. Then you go to your San Diego supermarket and pick up the kids on the way home. Way better use of
your time.

Now you may wonder what this has to do with your auto. Well, back in the day, each of your engine’s accessories, like the alternator and air conditioner, were powered by separate belts. A vehicle might have 5 or 6 belts. These days, vehicles have a single belt to run all the accessories. It’s called the serpentine belt because it snakes around everything, efficiently connecting the accessories – like bundling your errands.

A pulley attached to the auto engine’s crank provides the power to turn the serpentine belt. The belt may provide the power for the power steering pump, which makes it easier to steer your auto. Next comes the alternator which generates electricity to run the vehicle’s electrical system and charge the battery. On to the air conditioning compressor. This helps make cold air to keep you comfortable all summer long in San Diego.

On some vehicles the water pump or radiator fan or the power brakes are also run by the serpentine belt. Some even have two serpentine belts. No matter how your engine is arranged, you aren’t going far without a serpentine belt. Your auto manufacturer has a recommended interval for inspecting your belt and your San Diego tech can inspect it for damage or wear.

Finally, there is the belt tensioner. Its job is to apply pressure on the belt to keep it tight. Several years ago, car makers started making serpentine belts out of a new material. It’s much more durable, but it’s harder to tell when the belt needs to be replaced. The old style belts would crack and chunks would fall off so you could easily see when you needed a new one.

On the new style belts, if the ribs wear too deep, it’s time to replace. Your service advisor uses a simple gauge to tell when the belt is worn and you need a serpentine belt replacement. A worn belt stresses your auto engine’s expensive accessories and causes them to wear prematurely.

So, change your serpentine belt and belt tensioner as recommended by your friendly Mira Mesa Automotive service professional to extend the life of your accessories and to prevent future breakdowns.

Give us a call

Mira Mesa Automotive
858.271.6766
9513 Ste.D Black Mt Rd
San Diego, CA 92126

Posted by & filed under Tires.

Tire Service At Mira Mesa Automotive In San DiegoFor most auto owners buying tires in San Diego is a big deal, so consult with your friendly Mira Mesa Automotive tire professional about proper size, type and grade for your driving needs. He can help you balance load requirements, fuel efficiency, performance, durability and cost.

When buying new tires in San Diego, it’s best to replace both tires on the same axle in order to keep the rolling diameter as close as possible.

San Diego motorists with four-wheel-drive vehicles should replace all four tires at the same time because you can run into problems if the tires have different rolling diameters due to wear or different type of tire. Four wheel drive vehicles should have all tires very close to the same rolling diameter to avoid binding and wheel hop between the front and rear axles.

Also, CA tire manufacturers recommend that if you are buying just two new tires that they be installed on the rear for safer slippery road traction – regardless of which wheels drive the vehicle. Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego has you covered for all of your tire needs including tire repair, tire mounting, wheel balancing, and wheel alignment. We also provide , general service , general service, and service most all vehicles.

Give us a call

Mira Mesa Automotive
858.271.6766
9513 Ste.D Black Mt Rd
San Diego, CA 92126

Posted by & filed under Car Maintenance, Cooling System.

Our vehicles operate in a wide range of outside San Diego temperatures. That’s why manufacturers use testing grounds from the frozen tundra to the blistering desert. Your auto engine antifreeze/coolant must be able to perform in these extreme temperatures.

Antifreeze/coolant has to move heat away from the engine to prevent costly damage. Water does a very good job of holding heat, but it freezes at thirty two degrees.

That’s why we mix anti-freeze with water – it lowers the freezing point of the antifreeze/coolant, and raises the boiling point as well. A fifty/fifty blend of water and antifreeze/coolant is the usual recommendation for CA motorists.

And on top of that, antifreeze/coolant has to protect the components of the auto cooling system from corrosion. Your manufacturers owners’ manual will tell you what kind of antifreeze/coolant you should use. Of course, at Mira Mesa Automotive, we can advise you on what to put in your auto.

Cooling system failure is the most common mechanical problem San Diego auto owners have. Much of that can be avoided by following factory scheduled service intervals. Check your auto owner’s manual or with your Mira Mesa Automotive service advisor for recommendations. He can also conduct a cooling system inspection to look for leaks, weak hoses or bad connections.

Give us a call

Mira Mesa Automotive
858.271.6766
9513 Ste.D Black Mt Rd
San Diego, CA 92126

At Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego CA (92126) we install quality NAPA replacement parts. Give us a call at 858.271.6766.

Posted by & filed under Tires.

Mira Mesa Automotive Tech Question On Tire WearMira Mesa Automotive Tech Question:
My name is Dan. My auto tires wore out early and I had to replace them. What can I do to make my tires last longer?

Mira Mesa Automotive Answer:
Dan’s problem – premature tire wear – is very common for San Diego car owners. Here are several ways to lengthen the life of your tires:

First, tires lose air pressure over time, so check them at least once a month and fill them up as necessary. A sticker on the driver’s side door jamb has the recommended pressure.

Tire rotation is also essential for CA auto owners. Your front tires take the brunt of stopping and steering forces so they wear faster than the rear tires. They should be rotated regularly so that all four tires wear more evenly. Talk to us at Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego.

Out of balance wheels can also cause a tire to wear too fast. San Diego drivers who feel a vibration in their seat or steering wheel may have a wheel out of balance.

Finally, bad wheel alignment and worn or damaged suspension can chew through a tire very quickly. Ask your friendly Mira Mesa Automotive service specialist to have your tires inspected for signs of premature wear. Your tech will be able to pinpoint the cause and get it taken care of.

Mira Mesa Automotive

9513 Ste.D Black Mt Rd
San Diego, CA 92126
858.271.6766
miramesaauto.com

At Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego CA (92126) we install quality NAPA replacement parts. Give us a call at 858.271.6766.

Posted by & filed under Battery Maintenance, Car Maintenance.

Battery MaintenanceIn today’s Mira Mesa Automotive auto care blog, we are focusing on battery maintenance. Eventually your car battery will fail and you will need to replace it. In fact, 70% don’t even make it four years. There are some things San Diego motorists can do, however, to make their battery last a little longer.

It’s all about the flow of electrical power. When you start your auto, the battery uses power to get your engine cranking. As your engine runs, your alternator generates electricity to run all your electrical systems: like lights, a half dozen computers, anti-lock brake system, traction control, power windows, electronic fuel injectors, stability control, air conditioning, transmission servos – the list goes on. Any leftover electricity goes to recharge your auto battery. Then you turn on your radio and seat heaters; maybe plug in your cell phone and computer; the kids watch a DVD and pretty soon there isn’t much extra electricity to go back into the battery.

Now, if you were on a long CA road trip, no sweat – you’d have plenty of time to fully recharge your battery. But not if you’re making stops around San Diego. Every time you start your auto engine, your battery takes that big hit again. Multiple starts – multiple hits. By the time you get home, you have less than a full charge.

When the battery is continuously in a discharged state, it loses its ability to fully recharge. This starts a downward spiral in your battery life. Now when your battery is on its way to getting this bad, your alternator is working overtime trying to keep it charged – which causes the alternator to wear out prematurely. A lot of experienced San Diego technicians suggest replacing your battery after five years, even though it hasn’t yet failed, as a maintenance item to extend alternator life.

Now, there is something you can do to help your battery last longer by hooking up a battery charger once a month in the summer and every three months in winter. This will ensure your auto battery routinely has a full charge. You can do this less often in the winter because the electrochemical process slows down when it’s colder and less damage is done when your battery is low. Computerized battery chargers are real easy to use because they monitor and control the charging rate to keep the battery from overheating while it’s charging.

We recommend that you ask your friendly Mira Mesa Automotive advisor to test your battery so you know how much life is left. If it’s good but needs a maintenance service, he’ll have it cleaned up and make sure the connections and cables are good. If it’s looking like you ought to replace it, he’ll help you with a battery that’s right for your auto and driving needs.

Give us a call

Mira Mesa Automotive
858.271.6766
9513 Ste.D Black Mt Rd
San Diego, CA 92126

At Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego CA (92126) we install quality NAPA replacement parts. Give us a call at858.271.6766. To learn more about NAPA AutoCare, visit www.NAPAAutoCare.com.

Posted by & filed under Used Car Inspection.

What To Do When You Buy Used Cars In San DiegoSan Diego auto owners sell cars for a lot of different reasons. Maybe they just want something new or maybe they’re selling the car because it has a problem or two. So how do you know what you’re getting into when you sign the papers for a used car in CA?

When a car comes into Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego with maintenance records, we can see if the factory maintenance schedule has been followed.

If it doesn’t come with records, Poway and Rancho Santa Fe used car buyers have to assume the worst. How many San Diego people who are turning in a leased vehicle at 36,000 miles will perform the transmission service recommended at 35,000?

So what do you do? At Mira Mesa Automotive, we suggest getting on track with the maintenance schedule and staying on track. Lacking evidence to the contrary, assume it needs an oil change. The thorough Mira Mesa Automotive inspection that comes with a full service oil change will reveal basic problems.

Be sure to bring up any specific concerns with your Mira Mesa Automotive service consultant. When buying an older used vehicle in San Diego, there’s more to be concerned with because there’s been more time for things to go wrong. A used car inspection at Mira Mesa Automotive is a good idea: the peace of mind is well worth the money.

In addition to the scheduled maintenance items, look for uneven wear on the tires. That could be a symptom of an alignment problemworn shocks, or some other suspension issue. Listen for unusual sounds and pay attention to strange odors. Keep track of any problems you have when driving so you can consult with your friendly service advisor at Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego.

If you just bought a used car in the San Diego area, give us a call at 858.271.6766.

At Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego CA (92126) we install quality NAPA replacement parts. Give us a call at 858.271.6766. To learn more about NAPA AutoCare, visit www.NAPAAutoCare.com.

Posted by & filed under Emergency.

ICE - In Case of EmergencySometimes the unthinkable happens here in San Diego… A terrible accident and those involved aren’t able to provide our local San Diego rescuers with emergency contact information. There are people who must be contacted to arrange help, give consent to treatment, inform paramedics of medical conditions, allergies or medications.

Too often, San Diego police and rescue workers must sift through pockets, glove compartments, wallets, purses and cell phone directories for clues – often wasting precious time.

A brilliantly simple solution is now spreading around the globe: ICE. ICE – standing for ‘In Case of Emergency’, is a way of identifying emergency contacts in your cell phone directory.

Simply put ‘ICE’ before a contact name, like ‘ICE – Dad’, ‘ICE – Nancy’, or ‘ICE – Doctor Roberts’. Rescuers will be able to quickly identify your emergency contacts, saving valuable time.

It’s easy and just takes a few minutes to designate some ICE contacts in your cell phone. Remember to keep the listings current.

From your friends at Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego CA, we’d like you to be as safe as possible while out on the road. Give us a call any time for great automotive advice.

At Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego CA (92126) we install quality NAPA replacement parts. Give us a call at 858.271.6766. To learn more about NAPA AutoCare, visit www.NAPAAutoCare.com.

Posted by & filed under Used Car Inspection.

Used Car Inspection at Mira MesaIt’s natural to be a little anxious when you buy a used car in San Diego: you worry that it has something wrong with it or that it hasn’t been well maintained. If it’s possible, bring the auto in to Mira Mesa Automotive for an inspection. We can tell you if there are current or emerging problems. The peace of mind is well worth the price of the inspection service.

It’s also a good idea to get on track with the maintenance schedule at Mira Mesa Automotive and stay on track. If you don’t have maintenance records for the vehicle, assume the worst and get started with an oil changeThe inspection by a qualified San Diego service technician that comes with a full service oil change will reveal basic problems. Be sure to bring up any specific concerns with your friendly Mira Mesa Automotive service consultant.

A more intense inspection at Mira Mesa Automotive can find hidden problems like body damage and sealer in A/C units which can be major expenses down the road. Purchasing a Carfax report may let you know if the San Diego vehicle’s been in a major accident and give you a title history. You can find out if that ’71 Barracuda really was owned by a little old lady who only drove it to church in San Diego on Sundays. If you’ve bought well, there’s no reason to believe that with proper maintenance your “new” used auto won’t last a long time.

At Mira Mesa Automotive, we’ve been providing professional, quality automotive services (including used car inspections) for 23 years.

Give us a call

Mira Mesa Automotive
9513 Ste.D Black Mt Rd
San Diego, CA zip code 92126

At Mira Mesa Automotive in San Diego CA (92126) we install quality NAPA replacement parts. Give us a call at 858.271.6766. To learn more about NAPA AutoCare, visit www.NAPAAutoCare.com.