Jax Auto Repair

Servicing Brea and the surrounding area since 1985

Jax Auto Repair - Servicing Brea and the surrounding area since 1985

Jax Auto Repair Auto Tips and Videos: Brake Noise

Your brake pads are the vital parts that rub against the rotor (or disc) to slow and stop your auto. They eventually wear down.

When your pads are worn too much, they won’t stop your vehicle as well. When the friction material is worn away, metal parts of the pad are exposed and you’ll hear a squeal or grinding sound.

That’s when Brea drivers should replace their brake pads. Not only will new pads restore your stopping power, but replacing them on time will prevent damage to the rotor.

If your brakes are making noise, ask your Jax Auto Repair service professional to review your brakes. Addressing troubles early will restore your safety and prevent pricey brake damage.

Give us a call

Jax Auto Repair
(714) 529-2886
331 South Brea Boulevard
Brea, California 92821

Auto Videos for Brea Drivers: Signs of An Alignment Problem

When properly aligned, all of your wheels are pointed in the same direction. Your vehicle will track true and handle the way it is designed. La Habra drivers often associate our wheels being “knocked” out of alignment with an event like an accident, hitting a pothole, curb or some other object.

While these can certainly take your wheels out of alignment, the bumps and bounces of everyday Brea driving take their toll on wheel alignment as well.

Furthermore, your vehicle  can lose alignment over time with just normal driving. When your wheels are out of alignment, Jax Auto Repair in Brea can return your wheels to the auto maker factory settings. Most owners’ manuals suggest an alignment check every year or two. 

Give us a call

Jax Auto Repair
(714) 529-2886
331 South Brea Boulevard
Brea, California 92821

The Easy Way To Save Cash In Brea

The hottest California news story may be different everyday, but there’s one topic that seems to come up over and over again – the price of gas in Brea. If you feel like most of your paycheck goes into your gas tank, this post is for you. Here are several basic things  Brea auto owners can do to greatly reduce their gas consumption, save money, and help the La Habra environment. You can really improve your fuel efficiency by how you drive – but first, here’s a review of things you can do for your car that’ll save gas no matter how you drive.

The first one for Brea auto owners is keeping tires properly inflated. That can save two miles per gallon. Driving on low tires is like driving through sand – your car just has to work harder. Most Brea service centers will fill up your tires for free, so just ask your Jax Auto Repairservice advisor. Also, make a habit of checking your tire pressure whenever you fill up. Many Brea gas stations have an air hose you can use for free.

Another important item is to keep your air filter clean. An air filter all clogged up with dirt and bugs doesn’t let enough clean air through to efficiently burn fuel. Using a dirty air filter will cost you almost two miles per gallon in reduced fuel economy. And worn spark plugs can cost another two. A spark plug can fire as many as 3,000,000 times for every thousand miles driven. Check the sedan owner’s manual for replacement recommendations.

The biggest item is the oxygen sensor. This device provides the engine management computer with vital information it needs to fine-tune the fuel/air mix. When that’s messed up it can cost Brea auto owners up to three miles per gallon. And of course, there’s dangerous dirty or substandard oil. Dirty oil causes extra drag. The wrong grade may be too thick. That’s another .4 miles per gallon right there.

One item Brea residents seldom think about is their gas cap. A worn, loose or missing gas cap can cost another two miles per gallon. Adding up all of these worn, missing or sub-par items leads to a total of almost 11.4 miles per gallon in reduced fuel efficiency! And with current gas prices in the Brea area, the cost really adds up. Taking care of these simple maintenance items will save Brea drivers cash at the pump. 

Now most Brea drivers aren’t missing on all of these items, but think about which ones might affect you right now! And don’t forget tune-ups, dragging brakes, low transmission fluid, fuel system cleaning, wheels out of alignment, PCV valve, fuel filter and other critical services spelled out in your owners’ manual.

Jax Auto Repair knows all this stuff and can tell you when you’re scheduled to take care of each item. Create a system of your own to track your service schedules, or just use the computer system at Jax Auto Repair – which may also be updated with recall notices and important maintenance schedule items from your automobile manufacturer.

Timing Belt Replacement in Brea

Today we want to talk to Brea drivers about timing belts. They’re something that many Brea drivers don’t know much about and yet your vehicle won’t run if it’s broken – and it could cause many thousands of dollars damage if it does break. A broken timing belt is usually a tale of woe. Even though timing belt replacement is scheduled in the owner’s manual, it’s not the kind of thing that most La Habra auto owners remember because it’s not well understood.

Let’s review what a timing belt does. As most Brea car owners know, the engine’s power is generated in the cylinders. A piston rides up and down in the cylinder. During the first down stroke, an intake valve at the top of the cylinder opens and air and fuel is drawn into the cylinder. Then the piston returns to the top, compressing the fuel and air mix. At the top, the spark plug fires, igniting the fuel pushing the piston down in the power stroke. As the piston once again returns up in the final stroke of the cycle, an exhaust valve opens at the top of the cylinder and the exhaust is pushed out. The timing belt is what coordinates the opening and closing of the intake and exhaust valves. It’s called a timing belt because the valves have to open and close at just the right time.

Now, not all Fullerton and Yorba Linda vehicles have timing belts. Some have timing chains. Like the name implies, they use a chain rather than a belt to perform the function. It used to be that most engines used timing chains, which are extremely durable. The leading auto makers started using belts rather than chains to save money in the manufacturing process. So now Brea auto owners and Jax Auto Repair service specialists are left with a component that can break. They sort of shifted the problem to us. There are two broad categories of auto maker engine design: interference and non-interference. If the timing belt on a non-interference engine breaks, the engine simply stops running. That could be very dangerous for drivers depending on where they are at the time, but it causes no internal engine damage.

Interference sedan engines, on the other hand, will get real messed up when the timing belt breaks, because the valves will actually fall down into the path of the pistons. Things get chewed up when that happens and it’ll cost a chunk of bucks to repair the sedan engine.

So, what are the warning signs? Unfortunately, there really aren’t any. There aren’t tell-tale sounds. In some vehicles, a technician from Jax Auto Repair may be able to see part of the belt for a visual inspection, but many have a cover that’s in the way. The reality is that if the belt slips even one notch, it might as well be broken for all the pricey damage it’ll cause. There’s no middle ground.

So how can we avoid these problems? Simply replace the timing belt when your owner’s manual calls for it. It can be 60,000 miles; it might be 90,000 or 100,000 miles. The point is, if you have 60,000 or more miles, ask your Jax Auto Repair service advisor right away if your auto maker requires a timing belt replacement.

Contact Jax Auto Repair to learn more about your car’s Timing Belt
You can find us at:
331 South Brea Boulevard
Brea, California 92821
Or call us at (714) 529-2886

Sometimes Brea auto owners can go quite a while without a failure, but we’ve seen them happen within a couple of oil changes of being due. It’s not worth the risk.

What does it cost to replace a timing belt in Brea or Buena Park? Well, that really depends on what kind of car you have. I can tell you that it’s usually not very easy to get to the timing belt – you often have to remove some accessories to get at it. It isn’t a cheap procedure, but it’s a fraction of what it could cost to repair the costly damage caused by a failure.

At Jax Auto Repair in Brea we’re all about trying to prevent costly repairs, keeping you and your passengers safe and increasing your driving enjoyment. Thanks to AutoNetTV for their great auto video tips.

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Wheel Bearings

Why are wheel bearings vital for Brea car owners? It’s simple: your wheel bearings keep the wheels on your vehicle. In today’s Jax Auto Repair post, we’ll discuss more about wheel bearings and how you can make sure they can do their very critical job while you drive around Fullerton, California.

Come see us at: 331 South Brea Boulevard in Brea, California 92821

Wheel bearings are pretty simple parts. They’re made of high quality steel and are engineered to last 100,000 miles or more if properly cared for. The bearings do two critical jobs: First, they allow the wheel to freely rotate with as little friction as possible. Second, they support the weight of the vehicle. For example, if your car weighs 3,600 pounds, each wheel has to support approximately 900 pounds. That’s a lot of heavy lifting over many, many thousands of miles.

Even though wheel bearings are pretty straightforward, they need to be in near perfect condition to do their job for Brea auto owners. The bearings are packed with heavy grease to lubricate and protect them. A seal keeps the grease in and water and dirt out. It’s when the seal starts to leak that problems begin. The grease can become contaminated; causing the wheel bearings to overheat and ultimately fail.

The first sign that your wheel bearings are in trouble is an unusual noise coming from a wheel. It could be a chirping, growling, rumbling or a cyclic sound. The noise could get louder or even disappear at certain speeds. Your technician at Jax Auto Repair can inspect for bearing wear by lifting the vehicle and checking for play in the wheel.

Now some wheel bearing assemblies are factory sealed. That means that they cannot be serviced – they can only be replaced. Those that aren’t sealed can be serviced on schedule at Jax Auto Repair. The bearings are removed, cleaned and inspected. If the bearings are still good, they’re re-installed – if not, they’re replaced. They are then packed in grease and a new seal is installed.

If your vehicle has a factory sealed wheel bearing assembly, the entire assembly needs to be replaced when trouble arises. Unfortunately, the parts are pretty expensive – but they usually last about 150,000 miles as long as the seals hold up.

Now, even a good seal cannot keep out water that’s exerting pressure on the seal. So if you’ve driven through hub deep water your bearings should be cleaned and repacked if they’re serviceable. If you have factory sealed bearings, you just need to watch for signs of premature failure. If your wheel bearings can be serviced, your car maker’s owner’s manual will recommend an interval, usually around 30,000 miles.

If you have any sort of trailer, don’t forget its wheel bearings. They probably need to be serviced even more frequently. This is especially true for boat trailers that are used to launch the boat by backing it into the water. These should be serviced every year, usually at the end of the season so that the bearings don’t have the opportunity to rust all winter.

So what happens to Brea drivers if wheel bearings fail? Well, the wheel can literally fall off the vehicle. I don’t need to tell you how dangerous that could be. So check with your service advisor at Jax Auto Repair and see if your vehicle’s wheel bearings can be serviced and when it’s recommended. Listen for warning signs. If you’ve been fording streams or puddle surfing after rainstorms, be especially vigilant.

Visit the automotive professionals at Jax Auto Repair for a wheel bearing inspection, or for factory scheduled maintenance. Call (714) 529-2886 for an appointment.

Jax Auto Repair Car Care Advice for Brea Motorists: Making Your A/C System Last Longer

Brea auto owners know that if their air conditioning system isn’t making cool air like it used to, there is a problem. It may be as simple as adding more of the right kind of refrigerant.

Your A/C requires special compressor oil, which circulates through the system along with the refrigerant, to lubricate and protect expensive components and keep seals and gaskets from drying out. If refrigerant has leaked out – so has the compressor oil. This oil needs to be replenished whenever refrigerant is added.

An air conditioning analysis will uncover any potential problems and identify any needed repairs needed to get Brea auto owners on the road to cool air once again.

Give us a call

Jax Auto Repair
(714) 529-2886
331 South Brea Boulevard
Brea, California 92821

Drive Train – What You Need to Know In Brea

One Brea automotive service issue that doesn’t get much attention is driveline service. Drivelines don’t get talked about very much around La Habra, but they’re very essential. First let’s define what the driveline is:

Taking a small step back, the power plant is comprised of the engine and transmission. The driveline starts there and includes all of the components that transfer power from the transmission to the wheels.

That’s not really a lot of components, but they handle the full force of the engine. Without the driveline you’re not moving. So Brea drivers need to take good care of it. The driveline components differ depending on whether your vehicle has front wheel drive, rear wheel drive, all wheel drive or four wheel drive. For purposes of our discussion, we’re going to have to oversimplify a bit.

If you are ready to have your drive train looked at, give us a call:
Jax Auto Repair
331 South Brea Boulevard
Brea, California 92821
Call Us at (714) 529-2886

Let’s start with front wheel drive. The point where the transmission stops and the driveline begins is a little blurred with front wheel drive because the transaxle houses both the transmission function and the differential function. The half shafts that send power to each front wheel, come out of the transaxle. The shaft is connected to the wheel by a constant velocity, or CV, joint. The CV joint is protected from dirt and water by an airtight, flexible rubber boot.

So, Jax Auto Repair driveline service would include properly servicing the transaxle and inspecting the cv boot to see if it’s torn or loose. If it is, it needs to be replaced and the CV joint inspected for damage. Repairs may be in order. Besides visual damage to the airtight CV boot, you might hear a clicking noise when turning. Recommended maintenance for the transaxle and CV joints will be spelled out in your owner’s manual or check with your friendly Jax Auto Repair service professional.

On to rear wheel drive. The driveline for a rear wheel drive vehicle starts with the driveshaft – that long tube that connects the transmission with the differential on the rear axle. Some vehicles in Brea have a two piece drive shaft. The shafts are connected to the transmission and the differential with big universal joints. Most Brea motorists have probably heard the term ‘u-joints‘. These joints can wear out, just like the CV joints in front wheel drive vehicles. You may hear some clunking or feel a jolt when shifting into drive or reverse – if you do, get your driveline inspected at Jax Auto Repair in Brea.

The differential on the rear axle sends power out to each rear wheel through half shafts in the axle. The differential fluid needs to be drained periodically and replaced with clean fluid. When the seal on the end of the axle is damaged or leaks, the axle will need to be serviced. The routine maintenance item here is differential service. Be sure to check your owner’s manual or Brea service advisor for intervals.

Now let’s go on to all wheel drive. Remember that the difference between all wheel drive and four wheel drive is that an all wheel drive vehicle is essentially providing power to all of the wheels all of the time. The sedan may be able to shift more of the power to the front or to the back depending on where you need traction. All wheel drive vehicles are designed to work well on dry pavement. Even some high-end sports cars from makers like Lamborghini and Porsche have all wheel drive.

Some all wheel drive vehicles are designed to work well off-road in Brea, but all hard-core rock crawlers are four wheel drive. These guys thrive in mud, sand, rocks and hills – but they don’t work well on dry pavement when they’re in four wheel drive. So they have the option to shift to rear wheel drive only on dry pavement.

Most all-wheel drive vehicles are very similar to front wheel drive when it comes to the front end. They also have a center differential that transfers power to the rear differential. Connecting it all is a shaft from the transaxle to the center differential and another from the center differential to the rear differential. So all of the normal front wheel drive service is important as well as service to the center and rear differentials.

Four wheel drive can be thought of as a rear wheel drive vehicle that can also send power to the front axle. There’s a transfer case in the middle of the vehicle that can be shifted to send power through a drive shaft to a differential on the front axle. So Brea drivers need differential service for the front and rear differentials and for the transfer case as well.

The bottom line for Brea auto owners is that the maintenance schedules are in your owner’s manual. Your Brea service advisor can answer any questions you’ve got. If this is the first time you’ve heard some of this stuff – it’s time to ask someone at Jax Auto Repair if any of it needs to be done now.

Watch our auto tips video from AutoNetTV

Auto Videos for Brea Drivers: Timing Belt Overview

In your engine, valves over each combustion chamber open to allow fresh air in, close during the combustion event, and then other valves open to let out the exhaust. All of this happens over and over thousands of times a minute. The timing belt’s critical job is to make sure that all of this happens as it should – at precisely the right time. If the timing is off, your engine won’t run efficiently or maybe not at all – so a good timing belt is critical. If it should break, you could have costly engine damage.

Ask your friendly Jax Auto Repair service professional when your timing belt is scheduled for replacement.

Give us a call

Jax Auto Repair
(714) 529-2886
331 South Brea Boulevard
Brea, California 92821

Jax Auto Repair Auto Tips and Car Care: Serpentine Belt System Wear

The primary job of the serpentine belt is to provide vital traction to spin the accessories. As the belt wears it loses some of its grip and the accessories may not spin at optimal speeds. For example, if your alternator doesn’t spin fast enough, the battery will not completely recharge while you’re driving and you could end up stranded with a dead battery.

In short, a worn serpentine belt will stress all of the accessories it powers leading to premature wear and possible early replacement. When as little as 5% of belt material is lost, the serpentine belt cannot provide the proper traction for the accessories. Your friendly Jax Auto Repair service specialist can review your belt for excessive wear and replace your serpentine belt system if it’s excessively worn.

Give us a call

Jax Auto Repair
(714) 529-2886
331 South Brea Boulevard
Brea, California 92821

PCV Valve Service At Jax Auto Repair In Brea

Today, we are talking about your PCV valve. The PCV Valve is a little, inexpensive part that does a vital job for Brea drivers. PCV stands for Positive Crankcase Ventilation.

The crankcase is the bottom area of the engine that holds the oil. When the sedan engine’s running, fuel is burned to generate power. Most of the exhaust from combustion goes out through the exhaust system. But some exhaust blows by the pistons and goes into the lower engine, or crankcase.

These hot gases are about seventy percent unburned fuel.
PCV Valve Service At Jax Auto Repair In BreaThis can dilute and contaminate the oil, leading to damaging engine oil sludge. It can also cause sedan engine corrosion, something we see occasionally at Jax Auto Repair. At high speeds on Brea freeways, the pressure can build up to the point that gaskets and seals start to leak.

Back in the old days, manufacturers simply installed 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 sedan’s engine.

This is much better for air quality and improves fuel economy also. (Budget-conscious Brea motorists take note!) The little valve that performs this important function is the PCV valve. The PCV valve lets dangerous gases out of the engine, but won’t let anything back in. Over time, the vented gases will gum up the PCV valve and it won’t work well. That can lead to all of the problems I’ve already described, oil leaks, excessive oil consumption and decreased gas mileage.

Fortunately, it’s very easy to test the PCV Valve at Jax Auto Repair in Brea and quick and inexpensive to replace. Even so, it’s often overlooked because many Brea auto owners don’t know about it. Check your sedan owner’s manual or ask your Jax Auto Repair service advisor. If this is the first time you’ve heard of a PCV valve, you might be in line for a replacement.

There’s another aspect to the PCV system. In order for the valve to work correctly, it needs a little clean air to come in. This is done through a breather tube that gets some filtered air from the engine air filter. Now some vehicles have a small separate air filter for the breather tube called the breather element. That’ll need to be replaced at Jax Auto Repair when it gets dirty.

Please ask your friendly Brea service advisor about your PCV valve. For the price of a couple of burger combo meals in Brea, you can avoid some very pricey engine repairs.