Auto Care Plus

Serving Orange and the surrounding area for over 40 years

Auto Care Plus - Serving Orange and the surrounding area for over 40 years

Fresh Air Inside Your Car in Orange

Air quality has certainly become a hot issue in our modern Orange world. We install air filters on our ventilation systems and in our vacuum cleaners. There’s a filter that cleans the air going into our SUV’s engine — so why not one for the air in the passenger compartment?

Foreign and domestic manufacturers haven’t been ignoring the issue. Cabin air filters are becoming a standard feature on newer vehicles. These filters can clean particles out of the air down to three microns, which accounts for pollen, dust and most pollutants. Irvine motorists who suffer from allergies or have a respiratory disorder should be a lot more comfortable. And even if you don’t have a medical need for the filter, the cleaner air in your car just might help you breathe better, figuratively as well as literally.

Cabin air filters are still fairly new in Buena Park, so you’ll have to check your SUV owner’s manual to see if you have one. If you do, your routine car care will have to include changing the filter as part of your essential preventive maintenance. The owner’s manual will give recommendations on how often the filter has to be changed, but if the air where you live in CA is particularly dirty or if you’re prone to hay fever, you may want to change it more often.

Your friendly Auto Care Plus service professional can also offer suggestions on how often to change your cabin air filter in your Buena Park area. They’re the ones who actually see the dirty filters, after all.

There is no standardized location for cabin air filters. Orange motorists can usually find them in the SUV engine compartment or under the dashboard, but they might be somewhere else. So the ease of changing the filter will depend on its location. Some are readily accessible, but others make you wonder how they got installed in the first place. Bring your car into Auto Care Plus and we will locate your cabin air filter for you.

However, if you have a newer SUV, it’s good auto advice to find out if it has a cabin air filter. If it does, you should change the filter regularly. A sure sign that a filter needs to be changed is that the interior of your SUV will start to smell bad. That smell is exactly how some Buena Park auto owners discovered that they had cabin air filters in the first place!

Cabin air filters are just one more way we have to stay safe, stay healthy, and stay on the road in Orange.

Line Them Up: Wheel Alignment Service At Auto Care Plus

Hello Orange auto owners! Let’s talk about alignment. One of the most important parts of preventive maintenance for your vehicle is keeping the wheels in alignment. Poor alignment causes your tires to wear unevenly, which can significantly reduce their lifespan. This means you will have to replace them more often, which can be costly in Orange.

It can even damage your suspension system, which is a significant repair. But even more importantly, uneven tread wear can lead to blowouts on the road, a dangerous and potentially deadly safety risk for Orange motorists and their passengers.

It may not take an accident or bad driving habits to “knock” your tires out of alignment. Tires can go out of alignment with just everyday CA driving. Orange road hazards, pot holes, uneven or gravel roads, even the bumps and bounces of normal Buena Park highways and surface streets can gradually put your SUV tires out of alignment.

So it’s good auto advice to have your SUV’s alignment inspected periodically. Your vehicle’s owner’s manual will have recommendations on how often you should get an alignment check: usually every year or two. But if you think your SUV tires might be out of alignment, you should take your SUV into Auto Care Plus now.

When you take your SUV in for an alignment in Orange, your friendly Auto Care Plus tech will start by inspecting the steering and suspension systems. If something is broken or damaged there, it will need to be fixed in order to get good alignment of the wheels.

If all looks good in the steering and suspension departments, the SUV will then be put on an alignment rack where an initial alignment reading is taken. The wheels can then be aligned to the auto maker’s specifications. The ideal alignment for any vehicle is set by its engineers and may vary from vehicle to vehicle.

There are three types of essential adjustments that may have to be made to correctly align a vehicle’s tires. The first is called “toe.” This refers to tires that are out of alignment because they point inward or outward at the front of the tire. Think of a person who is pigeon-toed or splay-footed, and you get the idea.

The second adjustment is the camber. This adjustment affects the angle at which the tires meet the road. Think of a solid building in contrast to the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

The last adjustment is the castor. This adjustment measures the angle of the tire in relation to the front axles. So, a piece of auto advice that just might be good for life as well: keep everything in alignment, and you’ll be able to steer where you want to go in Buena Park. Drive safely.

Busting Automotive Myths In Orange CA

Myths passed around our Orange 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 SUVs 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 Orange area, come over to Auto Care Plus.
You’ll find us at 1432 N Glassell St., Orange, CA 92867.
Give us a call at (714) 771-7587 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 Orange. A grease fitting may have been installed in conjunction with a repair. And most trucks and truck-based SUVs driving in Orange 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 Orange 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. Auto Care Plus 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 Auto Care Plus 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 Orange 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 SUV is still a machine that needs to be maintained. And, hey, your service advisors at Auto Care Plus have always adapted to keep pace with automotive technology. Next time you come across an angry voice about your car care, talk to your Orange service advisor at Auto Care Plus, or do some research of your own.

Straight And True In Orange: Wheel Alignment

Most Buena Park 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 Orange motorists 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 Orange. Bad alignment can also cause damage to suspension and steering systems, which can be expensive to repair in Buena Park.

Tire wear on misaligned wheels can also lead to blowouts, which are dangerous, can lead to serious accidents, and can seriously damage your SUV. Also, poor alignment itself can be the cause of an accident, since the SUV may not steer properly.

One or more wheels on your SUV can be knocked out of alignment by running over a curb or a pothole on a bumpy Orange street. An accident, even a minor one, that involves a wheel on your car can lead to misalignment. The small bumps and bangs of everyday Irvine driving can also gradually put your wheels out of alignment.

If you have had wheel damage to your SUV, or if you suspect that your wheels are out of alignment, you should get your alignment checked NOW. Any Auto Care Plus service advisor will give you that piece of auto advice. But good car care suggests that you also get your alignment inspected on a regular basis. At Auto Care Plus in Orange, we can take care of that for you.

Your owner’s manual or Auto Care Plus service specialist can give you a suggestion on how often your alignment should be checked. If it doesn’t, then once a year is a good rule of thumb. However, if you drive a lot and especially if you drive on rough surfaces a lot, then you may want to consider a diagnostic examination more often. Ask your friendly service specialist for a recommendation.

If your SUV is out of alignment, one or more of the wheels is not tracking correctly and will “pull” against the others. Thus, one sign of poor alignment is that your SUV pulls to one side when you drive around Buena Park. Also, if you are driving a straight path and your steering wheel is off-center, that usually indicates an alignment problem.

Orange motorists should also check the wear on their tires. If they seem to be wearing out too quickly, or if you notice that a tire is wearing on one side more than the other, you should get your alignment checked.

When you get an automotive analysis, your vehicle will be put on a rack and all the parts of the steering and suspension systems will be inspected for wear or damage. The alignment of the tires will be charted and compared to the original factory settings. If no repairs are needed on the steering or suspension systems, the wheels will then be adjusted to bring them back into alignment.

This may seem like a lot of bother for Stanton motorists, but it’s a lot less trouble than a blowout or an accident. The old adage is good auto advice for all Orange residents: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

So keep on driving, and keep all four tires on the road.