Archive for March 27, 2012

Budgeting for Maintenance In Auburn California

Life’s full of surprises in Auburn California, some of which cost money. A leaky roof, a broken tooth, or an unexpected car repair. Euro Motors of Auburn California and AutoNetTV have done some research on how we can budget for proper vehicle care.

Everyone in Auburn California does our best to budget for scheduled vehicle maintenance. What’s hard is unexpected repairs. The truth is that our vehicles can stay on the road longer than ever before with proper maintenance. That’s because of improved vehicle design and manufacturing quality. But some of those same improvements also lead to higher repairs costs.

Let’s take the fuel pump. Previous generations were often stranded by the side of the road by vapor lock. This occurred when the gas vaporized between the gas tank and the fuel pump. Fuel just stopped flowing.

You had to sit and wait until the car would start again. To alleviate the problem, fuel pumps are now located inside the gas tank. This is a great solution, but when the fuel pump fails, it’s a much more expensive proposition to replace it.

Sealed wheel bearing assemblies are another example. These wheel bearings can’t be serviced – you just have to replace the entire assembly when it starts to fail. That costs several times as much as service on non-sealed bearings.

So we all benefit in Auburn California from design improvements, but we need to plan for repairs down the road.

There’s a tool that can be found on Edmunds.com that you can use to prepare your service and repair budget.

Let’s suppose you have a 2003 Toyota Camry – a very popular car in Auburn California. It’s now paid for and you’d like to keep it running for the next three years. You can go to Edmunds’ True Cost to Own calculator and enter your vehicle’s data. The calculator will provide estimates of what it’ll cost to service and repair your vehicle over the next five years. The estimate is based on where you live in or near Auburn California, manufacturers’ recommendations and repair experience for your particular model.

Of course these are just estimates – there’s no way to predict what’ll actually happen to the car in your driveway, but it’s a good starting point.

The calculator also has estimates for depreciation, financing, insurance, taxes and fuel costs.

Let’s focus on maintenance and repair. This table shows that the average monthly cost of maintenance and repairs is eighty-three dollars. That may sound like a lot, but compare it to a new car payment.

Budgeting for Maintenance

So if you set aside eighty-three dollars a month, you’d go a long ways towards taking care of routine maintenance and being prepared for the unexpected repairs that arise.

Of course, you can’t predict when something will go wrong or what it’ll cost, but at least you have a reasonable target to shoot for.

Some people around Auburn California are afraid of what can go wrong with their older car so they buy a new one. That’s fine if you really want a new car, but if you properly maintain your older vehicle, you’ll save a lot of money on new car payments and insurance. It just makes good economic sense.

Get with your Auburn California service advisor at Euro Motors and work out a plan for keeping your vehicle on the road.

You can visit Euro Motors at 10068 Streeter Rd. #14 in Auburn, California 95602 or just give us a call at 530-776-5343.

Another Couple of Years: Making Your Vehicle Last At Euro Motors

  />  

A while back, the Cash for Clunkers program was all over the news. Auburn people could trade in their old vehicle for a new one that got better fuel economy and receive a government rebate.

A lot of Auburn motorists had so-called clunkers that they wanted to keep. They’re good commuters, grocery getters or toy haulers. They enjoy that fact that they’re paid off, or soon will be. They would gladly like to keep their Sedans for 200,000 miles or more – as long as it’s economical to do so.

There are plenty of Auburn drivers whose vehicles are running after 150,000 or 200,000 miles. We can learn from what they’re doing to keep our own Sedans on the road in California.

Auburn drivers of high-mileage cars often report a common denominator of never skipping an oil change. Another Couple of Years: Making Your Vehicle Last At Euro MotorsThat may sound a bit unsophisticated, but it’s really not. First off, oil is the life blood of your Sedan’s engine and it needs to be clean to properly lubricate. Skipping oil changes leads to clogged oil filters and sludge that can damage your engine.

There’s another reason why the scheduled oil change is so important for Auburn car owners. It’s simple – a Euro Motors professional is going to be looking at your car. All of your fluid levels will be inspected and topped off so they won’t get so low that damage can be done. If there is a significant fluid loss, let’s use brake fluid as an example, your Euro Motors technician can look for the cause of the loss and find the problem before it leads to an accident or costly repair.

Your Euro Motors advisor will also visually inspect your Sedan for worn belts and hoses, uneven tire wear, leaking shock absorbers and more. Problems get addressed before they lead to repairs that cost more than the car’s worth.

And your Euro Motors advisor will be able to remind you of other services that the factory recommends you get done. Just think of that oil change the same way as you do about going to your Auburn dentist for your six month cleaning and checkup. Don’t skip it.

Realistically, things are going to wear out as your Sedan gets older. On the way to 200,000 miles you’ll go through several batteries, probably a couple of alternators and water pumps, a set of shocks and likely some brake rotors.

Of course, these things cost money, but they are far cheaper than new Sedan payments. With proper service at Euro Motors and regular inspections, you’ll keep surprise repairs to a minimum and more money in your wallet.

Maintenance for High Mileage Vehicles In Auburn California

Before the recession hit, the median age for cars in the Auburn California area (zip code: 95602) was over nine years. And two-thirds had over 75,000 miles. At Euro Motors we hear reports that those numbers continue to rise.

If you have a high-mileage vehicle in the Sacramento area, bring it in for high-mileage maintenance:
Euro Motors
10068 Streeter Rd. #14
Auburn, California 95602
530-776-5343

Many people in Auburn are keeping their vehicles longer. The economy has influenced that, but the fact that modern Sedans are more durable and reliable means that owning a high mileage vehicle doesn’t have to be a painful experience.

Local car owners in Auburn with over 100,000 miles on their vehicles often ask which service intervals they should follow. Let’s start with the special needs of the older vehicle…

The reality is that time and mileage will take its toll. The engine and transmission will have more sludge. The fuel, steering and brake systems will have gum and varnish built up. There’ll be more dirt and contaminants in the fuel tank. Corrosion and deposits in the cooling system. And seals and gaskets will start to dry out.

All of this, plus normal wear and tear, means that the engine might not be as strong as new, so it just has to work harder to get the job done.

So we need to compensate. Consider high-mileage formulations for oil changes, transmission service, etc. These special formulations contain additives that condition the seals and gaskets to prevent leaks. They also have more detergents to clean sludge and other deposits. They cost a bit more, but they’re worth it.

In general, if an auto service was recommended every 15,000 miles when the car was new, you should continue to get the service done every 15,000 miles.

Talk with your Auburn service advisor at Euro Motors about the condition of your engine. See if he thinks you should adjust your auto service intervals for oil changes or other auto maintenance to account for the older engine working harder.

Expect the oil filter to get dirty faster. Same goes for the fuel filter. And some leaks are to be expected so you need to keep a closer eye on fluid levels.

If anything, following recommended service intervals for your Sedan is more important in a higher mileage vehicle. Skipping oil changes or other services can lead to problems much more quickly than with a newer vehicle.

So, have your Auburn auto service advisor at Euro Motors help you with an assessment of your older car or truck. If you haven’t gotten around to a fuel system cleaning, or replacing power steering or brake fluid, a differential service or transmission service – it’s time to start taking care of those things. It’ll help keep you on the road for many more happy miles.

Which Item is Most Stolen from Vehicles in Auburn?

Which item is most often stolen from vehicles in Auburn?

Is it:

  1. Stereo
  2. Wheels
  3. Air Bag
  4. DVD System

Well, if you said stereo – you used to be right. But airbags have now surpassed stereos as the biggest target for theft in Auburn – approximately 50,000 a year are stolen across the country. New airbags cost about $1,000, but go for $50 to $200 on the black market in Auburn.

Stolen airbags are making their way back into cars that have been in an accident. Of course, the danger to the consumer of having a stolen airbag installed is that you can never be sure what may have previously affected them and if they will work right when you need them.

Contact Euro Motors for more information about where to get your airbags checked or replaced.
Find us at 10068 Streeter Rd. #14, Auburn, California 95602
You can reach us by phone at: 530-776-5343

There are reports that 1 in 25 airbag replacements are stolen or salvaged airbags – or no airbag is installed at all.

That is definitely one car part you don’t want to take a chance with, so Euro Motors recommends following these guidelines:

  • Use a reputable collision repair center that employs ASE certified mechanics (we can offer recommendations at Euro Motors).
  • Inspect the invoice to ensure that the repair shop purchased the airbag from a manufacturer, dealer, or recycler. If you can inspect the airbag prior to installation, it should be packaged in a sealed container from the manufacturer.
  • You will see the SRS light (Supplemental Restraint System) when you first start your vehicle up. This tells you that the airbag system is activated. If you do not see the SRS light, there is likely a problem with the airbag system.

For more information, contact Urs at Euro Motors by calling 530-776-5343.