San Diego & La Mesa Auto Repair

Same Great Service

At Both Locations!

Mon - Fri: 7:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sat: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

La Mesa Location

(619) 403-9426

7447 University Ave, La Mesa, CA 91942

Mon - Fri: 7:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Visit this shop

Articles:

Change is Good (Oil Change)

You've heard that expression, change is good.  When it comes to your vehicle's oil, change is not only good, it's vital for the health of the engine.  But there's one question that puzzles many drivers: how frequently should my vehicle's oil be changed? There is not one simple answer, but here are some guidelines that will help. It used to be pretty much a rule of thumb that vehicles got their oil changed once every 3 months or 3,000 miles/5,000 kilometers.  But times have changed.  Oil formulations have gotten better and engine designs have made longer oil change intervals possible.  Most experts advise you to read the recommendations that come from the manufacturer that designed and built your vehicle.  Their designers and engineers know more about your vehicle than anyone else.  They spell out their recommended oil change interval and type of oil in your owner's manual.  Many automakers say you can go at least 5,000 miles/8,000 kilometers betw ... read more

Categories:

Oil Change

Improve Fuel Economy with Proper Maintenance at John's Automotive Care in San Diego

With San Diego gas prices being what they are, many of us in CA are driving less and looking into purchasing smaller or more efficient vehicles. San Diego area residents who have to drive a lot, have large families or need four-wheel drive are particularly hard hit by the cost of fuel in CA. But there are things all San Diego drivers can do to save fuel: We can improve our driving habits and stay on top of preventive maintenance at John's Automotive Care. These things make small savings possible, but they can really add up.Let's start with driving habits. One major gas-eater is jackrabbit starts. A smooth, gradual acceleration uses a lot less fuel. It's also easier on your engine and drivetrain, so you'll prolong their lives as well.If you drive with one foot on the brake, stop. That creates drag, increasing fuel usage and reducing the useful life of your brakes.Slowing down can really add up on gas savings over time for San Diego drivers. Driving five ... read more

Categories:

Fuel Economy

Recommended San Diego Service Intervals

Recommended San Diego Service Intervals

Everyone in San Diego, CA, knows we are advised to go to our San Diego dentist twice a year.  Oral-conscious San Diego residents have a teeth-cleaning and examination. Once a year, we get x-rays to look for problems that can't be seen with the naked eye. When our dentist is done, he/she tells us what was found – "Everything's fine, see you in six months." Or "You've got a small cavity starting, let's schedule an appointment to take care of it." By the time you leave, you have a plan for addressing any necessary issues.This system works so much better than waiting for a painful problem before going into the dentist. Small problems are fixed before they turn into big problems. And you avoid those huge bills.If San Diego folks understand the wisdom of using this system for handling dental care, why do many resist when facing the same system for our vehicle maintenance? Following the vehicle manufacturer's recommended intervals can be confusing. First ... read more

It Pays to Take Care of Your Transmission at John's Automotive Care

It Pays to Take Care of Your Transmission at John's Automotive Care

If you've been paying attention, you've noticed that vehicle engines are getting more and more powerful in San Diego. At the same time, they are getting better and better fuel economy. I've gotta tell 'ya, most of that's because of technological advances in transmissions. To get a better understanding of why that is, let's talk bicycles.You've probably seen plenty of cyclists on San Diego roads. Perhaps you ride yourself. Then you know that a cyclist's cadence is the number of times per minute he or she pedals. The ideal pedal speed is the zone where they can most efficiently generate power over a sustained period of time. The experienced CA cyclist uses her gears to keep her pedal speed in the ideal zone whether she's climbing a hill, cruising on a flat stretch or killing a downhill.Think of it this way: if you have a 1-speed bike, you really have to pump hard to get up to speed. Your top speed is limited by how fast as you can pedal. And if you're climbing a steep CA ... read more

Categories:

Transmission

PCV Valve Service at John's Automotive Care in San Diego

PCV Valve Service at John's Automotive Care in San Diego

Today, we are talking about your PCV valve. Unburnt fuel is forced into the crankcase as your engine runs.  The PCV (positive crankcase ventilation) valve vents this unburnt fuel and oil vapors from the crankcase and sends it back into the air intake system to be burned in the engine.  A clogged PCV will not allow these vapors to escape. This can dilute and contaminate the oil, leading to damaging engine oil sludge. It can also cause vehicle engine corrosion, something we see occasionally at John's Automotive Care. At high speeds on CA freeways, the pressure can build up to the point that gaskets and seals start to leak. Back in the old days, vehicles were simply installed with a hose that vented these gases out into the atmosphere. But starting in the 1964 model year, environmental protection laws required that these gases be recycled back into the air intake system to be mixed with fuel and burned in the vehicle's engine.This is much better for air qua ... read more

Categories:

Parts

Distracted Driving

When asked, most people think they are good at multi-tasking. Scientific studies, however, reveal that only around 2% of the population can truly demonstrate the capacity to effectively multi-task. For the rest of us who are not so biologically wired, no amount of practice can increase our effectiveness at multi-tasking. Turns out, multi-tasking is almost a superpower. Think of fighter pilots: capable of maintaining their orientation in three dimensional space and performing specific and highly complicated functions while accessing life threatening situations and coming up with an appropriate response. Admit it – you can’t do that. Yet when it comes to driving, we seem to think we are very capable of safely operating a motor vehicle with myriad distractions. 77% of young adults feel somewhat confident that they can safely text and drive while 55% claim it’s easy to text and drive. Can they possibly be right? Let’s look at some statistics. Nearly 23% of all accid ... read more

Categories:

Auto Safety

Upgrade Shocks for Better Handling in San Diego

Upgrade Shocks for Better Handling in San Diego

Many San Diego drivers probably don't think of their shock absorbers as an important safety system; but that's just what shocks and struts are. They're all about ride control – keeping your vehicle tires in contact with the road and managing body motion.Every time you hit a bump or pothole on a San Diego road, your tire wants to bounce up. The bigger the bump, the higher the bounce. Your shocks or struts push down on the tire to maintain the traction you need to start, stop and turn.If you've ever ridden in a vehicle with bad shocks, you know how it wallows on corners. The front end dives when you hit the brakes and the rear end squats when you accelerate. It's not only uncomfortable, it is difficult to handle.You may have heard vehicles described as having “flat cornering." That means that when you take a corner, the body doesn't roll very much. When shocks start to get worn, your vehicle will roll more on corners. The weight of your vehicle's ... read more

Categories:

Shocks & Struts

Straight and True in San Diego: Wheel Alignment

Straight and True in San Diego: Wheel Alignment

Most San Diego 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 drivers in San Diego 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 San Diego. Bad alignment can also cause damage to suspension and steering systems, which can be expensive to repair in San Diego. Tire wear on misaligned wheels can also lead to blowouts, which are dangerous, can lead to serious accidents and can seriously damage your vehicle. Also, poor alignment itself can be the cause of an accident since the vehicle may not steer properly. One or more wheels on your vehicle can be knocked out ... read more

Categories:

Alignment

How to Know When to Change Your Oil at John's Automotive Care

How to Know When to Change Your Oil at John's Automotive Care

Today in the John's Automotive Care auto care blog, we're going to talk to San Diego drivers about oil change intervals. It seems that as engine technology advances, oil change intervals become longer for John's Automotive Care customers. For example, recently four of the world's largest vehicle manufacturer's shortened the published intervals for several of their engine models. They originally published intervals that extended out to a much as 8,000 miles (13,000 kilometers).In real world San Diego driving, the oil started to sludge up before the recommended change interval. Oil sludge is a thick jelly-like substance: quite literally petroleum jelly – like Vaseline. This goop was clogging vehicle small engine passages so the oil wouldn't flow to some parts of the engine. This resulted in engine damage. We see it too often at John's Automotive Care in San Diego.The vehicle manufacturers began to offer an extended warranty to cover sludge damage. But there was a c ... read more

Categories:

Fluids

Battery Basics for San Diego

Battery Basics for San Diego

It's important for San Diego drivers to know battery basics. First, let's talk about which is harder on a battery – hot or cold CA weather. Most San Diego area drivers think it's cold weather because that's when we call on our batteries to have enough power to start a cold vehicle engine. However, heat does more damage to a battery than cold. Truth is, our batteries start to die a little from day one. Keeping a full charge slows the process, which is hard with short San Diego trips because the alternator doesn't have time to fully recharge the battery from starting the engine. San Diego drivers can top off the charge with a computer controlled battery charger – say, once a month in the summer and every three months during the winter.As far as how long a battery will last, statistics show that 70% have given up the ghost within four years. By that time, they aren't capable of taking a full charge like they used to ... read more

Categories:

Battery
If You Are Using A Screen Reader And Are Having Problems Using This Website, please call John's Automotive Care (619) 280-9315 For Assistance.