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About Synthetic Oil and Your Car

 About Synthetic Oil and Your Car

You’ve probably heard about synthetic oil and are wondering what it is, and if it’s safe for you to use. Regular oil, which is also known as conventional oil, is a byproduct of dead dinosaurs. The molecules of regular oil are made of long hydrocarbon chains. A good way to think about it is a chain of used and new pencils. Synthetic oil is a kind of highly refined petroleum-based oil. They contain smaller molecules with less size variance, which would be closer to a chain of pencils you get when playing miniature golf. Synthetic oil is commonly man-made and features rounder and more uniform molecules like marbles. So as you make the transition from regular oil to synthetic blends (which is a mixture of synthetic and conventional oil) to fully synthetic oil there would be less friction acting against your engine. The less friction there is the less heat there is, and the better lubricated and protected your engine is. Synthetic blends and fully synthetic oils also come with ... read more

10 Automotive Maintenance Services You Shouldn’t Overlook

10 Automotive Maintenance Services You Shouldn’t Overlook

Today we’ll be looking at automotive service schedules; in particular the often overlooked scheduled services. These are known as Unperformed Maintenance. The following is a list of the ten services you shouldn’t overlook. These are all important services that you should pay attention to. So here they are, in no particular order. Power Steering Service Have you really ever considered a power steering service? Power steering takes fluid that builds-up excess moisture and gets dirty over time. Having the power steering cleaned out removes all this dirt and stops the power steering from corroding. Check with your Service Advisor to see if it’s time you had your power steering checked out. Wheel Alignment Your car will start to pull to one side if your wheels come out of alignment. Not only is this annoying but it’s downright dangerous and really damages your tires; leading to costly repairs. Most owner’s manuals come with the recommendation of checking you ... read more

Get Your Spectrum Car Care Official Paper Model Vehicle!

Get Your Spectrum Car Care Official Paper Model Vehicle!

Here's our official Spectrum Car Care paper truck! Attached you will find the paper model of the VW 23-window van with our logo on it. I recommend you print the model on paper of about 200 gr/m2. Standard matte photo paper will do fine. Get your scissors and glue and get started!  Click HERE to download the PDF version.

The Multiple Reasons you Need a Multi-Point Inspection

Your car is always going to take a beating unless you keep it stored in a climate-controlled garage and under glass. Everything wears down your auto including the weather, the road, and good old fashioned Father Time. All this wear and tear builds up and damages the car. This is why you need to have a multi-point inspection done to your vehicle. These give you the best method of keeping track of every system on your vehicle and assessing how much maintenance, if any, needs to be done before the problem can become a real issue. You might not remember that time the curb jumped out of you “once” but your car can remember in the form of a worn tire or damaged suspension. These are the kind of problems that a multi-point inspection can uncover. So just what is a multi-point inspection? It’s when all of the essential pieces of your car are inspected. This includes the fluids, the air filters, the brake pads, the batter, and the tires; including a pressure and tread dept ... read more

The Multi-Tasking Serpentine Belt

Let’s talk about serpentine belts, specifically: what they do and how frequently they need to be changed? The serpentine belt is a single, continuous belt that operates multiple devices in an engine including the alternator, air conditioner, water pump, and power steering pump. In engines that have v-belts, individual belts operate these components and the automobile can have up to four different belts. The advantage of a serpentine belt is its efficiency. Having a single belt increases fuel economy and available power. The disadvantage of a serpentine belt is if it breaks several critical functions of the engine are lost and the engine will conk out leaving you stranded. How often do you need to change a serpentine belt? It depends. Serpentine belts are tough so they can handle a lot of wear before they completely fail. Typically, a belt will last around 60,000 to 100,000 miles. That is why a good rule of thumb is to have your belt inspected at 60,000 mile and replaced at ... read more

An Ounce of Prevention = A Pound of Cure Pt.1

Avoiding performing recommended maintenance service can come with a hefty price tag. Here are four important steps you can take to protect your vehicle.   1) Change the Oil Regularly   First up is the simple oil change. Bottom line – if you change your oil on schedule, your engine will be properly protected. Go past the recommended mileage interval, typically every 3,000 to 5,000 miles depending on driving conditions, and sludge begins to build up in your engine. This sludge can clog small oil passages that keep important parts of the engine from being cooled and lubricated. That is never good for your engine. If your engine has variable valve timing, as most do nowadays, or a turbocharger, then these expensive components are at high risk for failure and expensive replacement. If you’re not sure how often you should change your vehicle’s oil, ask your Service Advisor.   2) Change Timing Belts and Chains Timely   Many vehicles come equipped ... read more

What Should I Choose? Explaining Octane Ratings

What Should I Choose? Explaining Octane Ratings

No matter what kind of engine your vehicle has it will require the right fuel to work properly. When you get to the pumps though there are often three or four different fuels with names like “Regular”, “Premium” and “Plus”. The reason these fuels have these names is because of their octane rating. They should also be marked with a number between 87 and 91. The octane rating is simply how compatible a grade of gasoline is with a particular engine. After you add fuel to your gas tank and get on the go the gasoline is compressed with air in the combustion chamber of your engine. When the pressure reaches a certain point it can cause the gas to spontaneously combust and you hear a “knocking” sound. That’s what you don’t want to happen. This is what is known as an uncontrolled combustion and it happens more often when you use a low octane fuel with a car that has a high performance engine. When this happens it causes the gas to c ... read more

Why People are Hesitant to Have their Vehicle Serviced

There are around 162 million vehicles in the United States that go without being serviced when they need it. A recent report suggests that around 80% of the cars on the road right now have at least one service repair that isn’t being addressed. While some of these can be small and simple things, there are others that present major safety concerns for the driver and everyone around them. So what stops people from having their car serviced? There are a number of reasons why people are hesitant to have their vehicle serviced, even for something as minor as an oil change. How comfortable one feels about car care can be a major deciding factor. If someone feels that the decision to have the car serviced might not be the right one they won’t go through with the service. People who don’t understand cars too well will often hesitate to ask questions out of fear of looking ignorant. You need to understand that the technician wants to answer your questions. They want you ... read more

Supporting Local Nonprofits - Starbright Foundation

Supporting Local Nonprofits - Starbright Foundation

"Child abuse casts a shadow the length of a lifetime." - Herbert Ward   One of the great privileges of running a small business is being able to give generously to community organizations and charitable causes. We've been looking at local organizations to support and we're proud to be associated with pastor Michael Chalberg and the  ... read more

Keeping Your Car Running Smooth at the Right Temperature

Keeping Your Car Running Smooth at the Right Temperature

Have you ever noticed that you start to slow down when the summer starts? You likely find yourself looking for some shade and a nice cool drink to get back to speed. The same thing happens to your c ar. When the engine starts running hot the Coolant Temperature Sensor (CTS) messages the control computer in our engine to start controlling a lot of different processes including the fuel injection, ignition timing, the variable valve timing and transmission shifting. When the engine warms up it takes different timings and a different mix of fuel to keep going properly. Unfortunately even coolant temperature sensors succumb to time and begin to stop working properly as time goes on. Having the CTS replaced is one of the most common vehicle repairs that there is. It’s also really simple and inexpensive to have done. If you notice that your car is using more fuel than usual, you have trouble starting it, or the exhaust pipe is emitting black smoke then you could have a bad sensor. A f ... read more

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