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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.

Yearly Archives: 2020

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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How to Maintain your Vehicle's Tires

How to Maintain your Vehicle's Tires

When you think about vehicle maintenance, do your tires come to mind? The truth is, tires can be expensive to repair and do need to be serviced regularly to last their full lifetime. Good tire maintenance will save you hundreds on tires throughout the years and will also ensure your safety on the road.  When you drive with bad or worn-out tires, your safety is at stake. Think about the job of the tires - they are the only thing sitting between your vehicle and the road, and the traction they create with the terrain allows you to control your vehicle accurately. When your tires are worn, they don't create the proper traction and this is when your vehicle may not be controlled accurately. Plus, you put yourself at risk for a tire blowout. Ever seen those tires on the highway that look like they exploded? That is a tire a blowout. It is very dangerous when it happens on a freeway, and can severely damage your wheels, rims, and suspension system.  So, what are some of the w ... read more

Is Your College Kid’s Car Ready To Go Back To School?

Is Your College Kid’s Car Ready To Go Back To School?

We can’t believe how fast summer is flying by. Soon enough, our kids will be beginning school again, whether their classes are online or on-campus. Back-to-school season is an exciting time for many --for parents, sending their kids off to college for the first time, and college students, taking that first step into adulthood. For parents, we also recognize that you can’t help but worry about your first-time college kids. Soon enough, we know that their days will be consumed with endless studying, and they will most likely have very little time, and brainpower left for caring for their vehicles.  The team at Family Auto Service is here to help. Regardless of whether your college kid is attending school online or in-person, they probably won’t have too much spare time for routine preventative maintenance and auto repair. Before your son or daughter begins college, it might be wise to schedule a Family Auto Service visit for preventative maintenance. This way, our ... read more

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Tips for Road Tripping Out of State

Tips for Road Tripping Out of State

The summer months are the perfect time for road trips, especially when the kids are out of school and the weather is warm. If you’re planning a road trip that travels out of state, we recommend doing research before you embark to ensure that you’re ready for your travels.  Some things to bring along include: First aid kit Extra blankets and pillows for the road Plenty of water and snacks Phone charge Emergency kit Spare tire and tire changing tools Map/GPS When traveling out of state for a road trip, be sure to research the state or states that you will be traveling to or through. A good thing to be familiar with is state traffic laws, which can greatly differ between states. This will ensure that you’re able to drive safely and obey the law on your journey.  It is also a good idea to research the weather and climate of your destination. This will allow you to be more prepared for certain weather conditions, such as rain. You’ll be able to pac ... read more

Five Day Trip Ideas In San Diego County

If you want to get away for a day trip, Family Auto Service has five day trip ideas for you that are within San Diego County.   First, let us mention how much we love San Diego County. We really don’t have to travel far to enjoy some beautiful scenery. For example, Sunset Cliffs is one of our favorite beaches. We’ve been coming to this beach since childhood and we all took turns jumping off the cliffs into the water below. You can stay here all day, if you wish, and soak in the sunshine. Be sure to bring sunscreen! For directions, click here.   Second, you can’t miss out on Balboa Park and all that is has to offer. Yes, it is in our backyard, and yes, it isn’t fully open, but when was the last time you spent quality time with the family walking ar ... read more

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Why Vehicles Fail Emissions Testing

Why Vehicles Fail Emissions Testing

Here in California, biennial smog or emissions testing is required in order to renew registration. Biennial means that you need to have this testing done every two years. The reason behind smog testing is to ensure that every registered vehicle meets certain basic requirements when it comes to vehicle emissions. This is in an effort to protect our environment and reduce the volume of greenhouse gases that we release into our atmosphere.  Failing an emissions test can definitely be a shock, especially if you thought your vehicle was running fine. There are certain reasons why your vehicle may have failed emissions, and all will more than likely require a repair to fix. Let's look at some of the most common reasons why vehicles failed emissions testing:  Your check engine light is on - no car will pass emissions with a check engine light on. Depending on the reason for why the check engine light is on in the first place, you'll need to have the u ... read more

How To Drive On The Beach Without Getting Stuck In The Sand

If you plan to take a trip to the beach, you may be tempted to drive on the sand. In California, there are only a handful of beaches you can drive on. But if you do choose to drive, make sure you take precautions not to get stuck in the sand. Trust us, it’s not fun getting stuck and you don’t want to have a tow truck pull you out. To avoid getting stuck in the sand at all, the obvious choice is to limit your driving and parking to the parking lots. Parking lots truly are your best choice for safety and not getting stuck in the sand. If, however, you decide to drive on a beach in your car, the number one rule is to stay on the hard-packed sand. The hard-packed sand is easiest to maneuver on and you should not have any problems.  If you have to drive in soft sand, DO NOT stop the car. Keep driving until you have gotten out of the soft sand and onto the hard packed sand. If you stop in the soft sand, you will lose your momentum and your traction, which will cause you t ... read more

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What are the Warning Signs of Bad Brakes?

What are the Warning Signs of Bad Brakes?

Working brakes are vital when it comes to being able to accurately slow and stop your vehicle on the road. Being aware of how your brakes work regularly and understanding some signs of bad brakes can make the difference between getting stuck with failing brakes and being able to detect an issue early on.  We recommend that your vehicle's brake system is looked at by one of our experts here at Family Auto Service at least once a year to verify that your brake pads, rotors, lines, and other components are working correctly. An issue with a major brake component such as the brake line or brake pads, can cause sudden brake problems and is definitely something to try and avoid at all costs. Proper brake maintenance will help you avoid these dangerous and uncertain situations and keep you safe on the road.  The following symptoms can be warning signs of bad brakes:  Brake warning light is on Noticeable decrease in brake power Vibrating while b ... read more

Top Parent-Approved Vehicles For Young Drivers

Do you remember getting your first car after turning 16? Few things get us more excited in life than this monumental event. It seems that all those kids think about in the months leading up to the day they get their driver's license, while as parents, we worry about what car will be right for them.  There are so many things to consider when deciding on a first car. Perhaps it is best to find one with less horsepower and a smaller engine. This can help keep them from putting "the pedal to the metal" so to speak. Are you considering a compact? It might be better to choose a more substantial, heavier car to help keep them safe. Perhaps find a vehicle that has electronic stability control (ESC) to help them stay on the road safely. Here are some of the top cars recommended for teens from the Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) under $20,000 to consider: Ford Fusion  This mid-size sedan comes in three trim levels to help with price-point as well ... read more

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Keep Your Vehicle Clean at the Beach

Keep Your Vehicle Clean at the Beach

Living close to beautiful beaches definitely has its perks. In the Southern California area, getting in your vehicle and heading to the beach is probably a regular occurrence, especially during the warmer months. While going to the beach is almost always a fun time, you may dread having to clean up your vehicle after the outing. A beach day can mean a sandy and dirty vehicle, even more likely if you have kids or pets coming along for the ride. Luckily, we have some tips on how you can keep your vehicle clean while still enjoying your day by the water.  Before returning to your car, be sure to really shake out your bags, blankets, and other belongings to get ride of as much sand as possible.   If your beach has feet showers, use them!   Consider using an old sheet or blanket to cover your backseat and trunk. This will make it a lot easier get rid of sand and protect your interior.   Use trash bags to cover your floor mats for easy sand removal from shoes and ... read more

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