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Welcome to the Family Auto Service blog! Not only does the team at Family Auto Service want to provide you with next-level auto repair, but we want to be a source of information for your family’s auto needs in the San Diego County area. Let us teach you how to care for the machine you’ve invested your family’s time and money in! To do so, each month on our blog you’ll find helpful informational posts from our experienced auto mechanics as well as ideas for your next family road trip, and much more. Make sure to take a look at Family Auto Service’s monthly blog posts for auto repair information you can trust in the San Diego County area.

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What are the Signs of Worn Shocks and Struts?

What are the Signs of Worn Shocks and Struts?

Most drivers depend on their senses to recognize when it is time for service. However, some vehicle components do not display physical warnings that they require service. Some of these components include worn shocks and struts. Synonymous with increasing the stopping distance, shocks and struts gradually wear out, making it hard to notice the wear and tear. Worn shocks and struts are also a safety hazard to you and your loved ones. What are shocks and struts? Shocks and struts dampen the movement of the spring and stop oscillation and bounce. These parts stabilize a vehicle's movement and enhance control when braking, turning or accelerating. Even though these parts play a joint role in a vehicle, they are entirely independent components. Shocks are an integral part of the vehicle suspension system, while struts are crucial for a vehicle's alignment and steering system. Signs of worn shocks and struts · Veering or sliding off the road You may begin to experience ins ... read more

Turning Over a New Leaf: Becoming a More Thoughtful Driver in 2021

Turning Over a New Leaf: Becoming a More Thoughtful Driver in 2021

Happy New Year, San Diego! As we say goodbye to 2020, and usher in 2021, those New Year’s Resolutions will be out in force. People will swear off their vices in order to get healthier, live longer, and be prouder of themselves, and the positivity and determination of that kind of commitment is something we love.   When we plan for improving ourselves, one area we may wish to look into is our driving. There is a kind of dog-eat-dog mentality in driving, where people think they are in a race, just because they have an appointment and they’re running late. We forgot the importance of maintaining the construct of law as a society, and choose our own, human needs over the safety and well-being of others. We cut each other off, we get angry and we curse and make obscene gestures, we refuse to let each other in, working some balance sheet of fairness in our heads that the other driver won’t know or understand.    One of the biggest keys to becoming a more ... read more

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Does my car need a radiator flush?

Does my car need a radiator flush?

As our cars get older, things start to erode and age. This is where periodic oil changes and tune-ups preventing erosion and breakdowns of engines and other operational needs. Another maintenance task is a radiator flush that can also provide some worthy protection, helping your car last longer. What is a Radiator Flush? A radiator flush is replacing your old coolant with new coolant, to get rid of any contaminants, rust, or other harmful particles in your cooling system. The radiator's job is to maintain the temperature in your car, preventing your engine from freezing or overheating. The flush is done by removing the cap from the bottom of the radiator releasing the old coolant, filling the radiator with a flushing agent, removing the agent, and then adding the new coolant. How Often Do You Need It? It is best to look at your car owner's manual to see how often you need a flush. Your owner's manual can tell you wha ... read more

Now Is The Time To Reflect On A Remarkable Year

Now Is The Time To Reflect On A Remarkable Year

December is a time of endings. There are so many faiths present in San Diego. And most of the religious observances  around this time of year are about renewal, in some way.    For Islam, it’s Mawlid el-Nabi, the birth of the Prophet, which ranges from small and sacred, to carnival-like processions, celebrating one who lead the way. Judaism has Hanukkah, which is a festival of lights to celebrate the triumph of faith in a very dark hour. Christianity has Christmas, which celebrates the coming of a messiah to redeem the world. And many of the Christmas rites we know come from the Winter’s Solstice, the darkest night of the year, which is a Wiccan (Pagan) tradition, celebrated with a spiced log on the fire to ward away the evils.   This past year, our community in San Diego has endured a lot. Fires destroyed a lot of homes and turned San Diego’s air difficult to breathe. Internet communication has polarized us instead of uniting us. There’s ... read more

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What is the TPMS Warning Light?

What is the TPMS Warning Light?

You're driving your car on the road when you suddenly get an alert - a light illuminates on your vehicle's dashboard that looks like the symbol above, or says "TPMS". Not many drivers understand what exactly this warning signal means, so let's take a deeper look at what exactly the TPMS light indicates what you should do next.  TPMS stands for tire pressure monitoring system, which is what your vehicle uses to monitor your tire pressure. Tire pressure is super important when it comes to your safety on the road. Driving with under or over-inflated tires can not only cause your tires to wear down quicker and unevenly, but it can also put you at risk for a tire blowout the road. Tire blowouts can be scary, plus they cause damage to other components when they happen such as the wheels or rims. This is why it is super important to monitor tire pressure and get them filled properly.  When the TPMS light turns on, chances are one of your tires has fallen belo ... read more

Ten Things We Are Thankful For At Family Auto Service

Ten Things We Are Thankful For At Family Auto Service

It’s November… As we come into autumn in San Diego, we are at the end of the harvest, and time to see out the year with the holidays ahead of us. Soon Christmas will be all around us, but first, we have Thanksgiving. But how do we say a graceful thank you to a year that gave us COVID19? This year has been brutal to too many, even in beautiful San Diego. There has been so much conflict and anger and grief and disconnection with people, which is the very antithesis of what San Diego and our surrounding communities have come to understand about itself.  It’s times like these, though, when life pushes back the hardest, that you know why you are thankful to sit down with the people you love the most for a meal once a year and be glad to still be around… which is in part how Thanksgiving began. November 9th is the 400th anniversary of the day the Mayflower spotted the coast of Cape Cod. A pilgrim led a reading of Psalm 100 to thank God for the mercy in getti ... read more

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Reasons Behind A Car That Won't Start

Reasons Behind A Car That Won't Start

We understand how frustrating it is to get into your vehicle, try to crank it up, and find that your car won't start. Plus, it always tends to happen at the worst possible times, like when you have somewhere that you need to be. Most drivers will right away think that the issue is with our car battery and desperately try to find those jumper cables and a friend to help. However, a car not starting doesn't always point to the battery. Let's look at some of the potential causes for why a car won't start:Dead battery - yes, often times the case is due to a dead battery. You may have left a light on all night or you haven't replaced your battery in years. This can easily be determined by testing the battery for charge.   Battery corrosion - corrosion on the outside of the battery terminal can prevent your engine from getting the correct charge in order to start up. A good battery cleaning (make sure to do it saf ... read more

Best Places In San Diego County To Show Out-Of-Town Visitors

Best Places In San Diego County To Show Out-Of-Town Visitors

The San Diego area has a lot of beauty to show off. With relatives soon to be coming from out of state for family gatherings once the wildfires are contained, Family Auto Service wanted to point out some of the beautiful tourist spots to take relatives to, still open in the midst of COVID19, that can delight first-time visitors and old friends alike. La Mesa The abundance of Californian beauty is on display in La Mesa, "the Jewel of the Hills." With its many parks, such as Briercrest Park, La Mesita Park, Harry Griffen Park, and Mission Trails Regional Park, there’s plenty of natural views to see. And there’s the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum for those ferroequinologists (railfans) you may know. La Jolla  In addition to visiting the posh boutiques and waterfront restaurants in La Jolla Village, Camino De La Costa offers a scenic coastal road with sandy dune beachfronts. For inland people, it’s definitely somethin ... read more

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How Often Do Windshield Wipers Need to Be Changed?

How Often Do Windshield Wipers Need to Be Changed?

Now that it is officially fall, it's time to start thinking about your vehicle's fall maintenance. One important service item that is important for the changing weather is your windshield wipers. Your vehicle's windshield wipers are critical when it comes to driving in the rain that will more than likely start falling in the coming months. They help clear your windshield so that you can see clearly through the rain. Getting stuck driving in the rain without working wipers can be very dangerous and put you at risk for accidents on the road.  So, how often do windshield wipers need to be replaced? Because they are constantly exposed and the rubber on them is thin, they tend to need to be replaced every 6 months or so, but at least every year. It depends on how often you use your wipers and whether or not you constantly park in direct sunlight. The summer does tend to wear down wipers faster than usual and can cause the rubber to dry out or fray. If your windshield wipe ... read more

How To Maintain A Hybrid vs. a Diesel vs. a Gasoline-Powered Vehicle vs. an Electric Vehicle.

How To Maintain A Hybrid vs. a Diesel vs. a Gasoline-Powered Vehicle vs. an Electric Vehicle.

At Family Auto Service in San Diego County, we love maintaining vehicles because it is what’s best for our customers and their cars. If you are looking at the difference in maintenance for hybrid versus diesel versus gas-engine versus electric vehicles, you are going to enjoy this month’s blog.  There is a lot of talk about “Which one is better?” The answer lies in your needs. Hybrids are very affordable and have terrific fuel efficiency. Diesels are extremely reliable and last a long time. Gas-powered engines are most common. Electric vehicles are the trendy option, but their battery-recharge networks are not found everywhere yet.  But if you look at maintenance alone, we are happy to share our professional opinion about these four options. Spoiler alert: Each of these options require maintenance. None of them are going to last a long time if you neglect them. They all just have different nuances as far as the amount of maintenance the factory recom ... read more

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