You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Car Care Information’ category.

Function

Catalytic converters remove harmful elements from automotive exhaust by forcing the fumes to pass over metallic catalysts, including platinum, rhodium and palladium, which neutralize the toxins and transform them into relatively safe components. The entire casing of the converter is constructed of stainless steel. All of these expensive metals make a catalytic converter a costly piece of equipment.

Cars with Dual Exhaust

While most production cars have only one catalytic converter, some do come with two. Cars with dual exhaust often have two catalytic converters — one for each set of pipes running from the headers to the rear of the vehicle.

Cars with Two In-Line Catalytic Converters

Newer high-end vehicles are now coming equipped with two catalytic converters as part of an even more stringent emissions program. The first converter breaks down the exhaust as normal, while the second acts both as a filter for tiny particles and a pump which releases a chemical mixture that further reduces any harmful gases which may have escaped the first converter.

What Are Potential Issues With a Catalytic Converter?

Catalytic converters often last for 10 years or more, but they can become contaminated, clogged, overheated or physically damaged — leading to sluggish engine performance and, eventually, engine shutdown.

One potential contaminant is leaded gas, which can destroy the catalysts, although it is rarely found in the U.S. Others contaminants include engine coolant, which can leak into the combustion system because of a faulty cylinder head gasket, and engine oil. Those fluids can clog a catalytic converter so that exhaust gases are restricted from passing through. Car engines are like athletes in that they require lots of oxygen. If the exhaust flow is restricted, it means less air can get into the engine and performance suffers. If the engine responds sluggishly or quits after running for a while, a clogged converter could be to blame.

Catalytic converters can overheat because of excessive amounts of unburned gas caused by a misfiring spark plug or a leaky exhaust valve. In addition, a failed oxygen sensor can cause overheating.

On many vehicles, the “cat” is located under the vehicle, and like other parts of the exhaust system, it can also be damaged by road debris or by running over a curb.

Catalytic Converter Maintenance

Among the symptoms of a bad catalytic converter are:

  • Sluggish engine performance
  • Reduced acceleration
  • Dark exhaust smoke
  • The smell of sulfur or rotten eggs from the exhaust
  • Excessive heat under the vehicle

Some of those symptoms can also be caused by other parts of the emissions system, so it’s important for a mechanic to diagnose when it’s time to replace your catalytic converter.

Following your vehicle’s recommended maintenance schedule can help delay this moment as long as possible — often 10 years or more. Keeping your exhaust, emissions and combustion systems in good shape will minimize the risk of your catalytic converter failing before its time.

Stop by Sierra Car Care today for your catalytic converter and exhaust system repair needs.

Extreme weather can do a number on your vehicle. In the Summer, beyond making your legs stick to your leather seats, the heat can cause serious problems for drivers. It’s important to prepare for the hot weather months ahead.

Here are five safety tips to help ensure that you, your family, pets and vehicle handle summer safely:

  1. Monitor tire pressure: Check tires before and during long trips. For an accurate result, use your gauge when tires are cold, usually before driving in the morning or after you’ve been parked for a while. Tire air pressure increases as the temperature goes up. Scientists have figured out that for every 10 degrees (Fahrenheit) that the temperature rises the tire pressure will increase by one pound per square inch (PSI). Doesn’t sound like much but there’s typically only 30-35 PSI in the tires of passenger vehicles.
  2. Fuel Economy: Gas evaporates quicker in a hot vehicle than it does in a cold one. Keeping your car in a garage or shade as much as possible will improve your fuel economy.
  3. Check fluids: Flush and fill the vehicle’s cooling system on schedule to prevent overheating. Check the level, condition and color/concentration of coolant regularly. Be careful around the radiator cap. Don’t touch or remove it until the engine is cool.
  4. Vehicle Battery: Hot weather can drain the life out of your car’s battery. When the temperature gets particularly high, the battery fluid can evaporate, meaning that damage can occur to the internal structure. 
  5. Professional checkup: For automobile safety, there’s no substitute for regular automotive checkups and fluid checks. Your mechanic should also inspect drive belts, hoses and clamps. At Sierra Car Care we offer a complimentary inspection to let you know how your vehicle is doing. We will recommend any work we see as vital and let you know about the overall general health of your vehicle. Click here for coupons.
  6. Use window shades to deter hot surfaces: Test vinyl seating surfaces and metal parts like safety belt buckles to prevent burns before placing your child in the car. Car shades are inexpensive, effective solutions to keep cool in extreme heat.
  7. Child and pet safety: Never leave children or pets alone in a vehicle, even with the car windows down. The interior temperature in a car or truck increases rapidly on hot days. It can soon exceed 100 degrees in the car. Be careful even when parked at home. Make sure to take your child and animals indoors with you, and don’t allow them to wait for you in the car. You could get a phone call, lose your keys temporarily or experience some other delay and forget them.

When you need auto repair come into any of our three Sierra Car Care locations around the Reno, NV area.

Our brand may have changed, but we are still operated by the same great management. Thank you for your trust.

 

We are a full service auto repair company. Our ASE Certified mechanics specialize in repair of all makes and models of vehicles. Enjoy competitive tire prices and gas pumps that are open 24/7 at three convenient locations in Reno.

 

Your vehicle’s dashboard lights play an important role in precautionary maintenance. These lights indicate an issue with your car that needs either an immediate action or checking.

If you have a check engine light on, that requires immediate attention, feel free to bring your vehicle into any of our three locations around the Reno area.

 

Right Front Tire Low Add Air to Tire

On most newer vehicles there is a sensor that monitors the tire pressure.  When the vehicle senses one of your tires drops in pressure this light will illuminate.
Reasons for Tire Pressure Loss
  1. There is an object that has punctured the tire like a nail or screw
  2. The “bead” where the tire meets the rim becomes unseated or is not properly sealed
  3. The “valve stem” where air in placed in the tire is worn or leaking
  4. There is a dramatic change in outside temperature that required the inside tire pressure to be adjusted

Make sure you take a tire warning light seriously!  Low pressure can affect steering and braking of your vehicle. Any puncture or leak could cause the tire to burst and loss of control of the vehicle. Stop by and see us, Sierra Car Care and Tire Center, so we can check your tires for leaks and adjust the pressure as needed!

Most vehicles do not come with a stabilization program in their software systems. This program measures a variety of information to determine if your vehicle has the potential for sliding or losing control.

The system can independently reduce the engine speed and/or brake individual tires to reduce or correct the vehicle from a potential spin out. It is not absolute in its ability to keep you out of every potential spin situation, but it is incredibly successful in keeping vehicles safe.

Refer to your owner’s manual for information relevant to your specific vehicle.

This year, many drivers will need actual tire chains during weather-related road controls on Mt. Rose Highway, Kingsbury Grade and parts of U.S. 50.

The new rules apply to any vehicle unless it is four-wheel or all-wheel drive with snow tires, according to the Nevada Department of Transportation.

In the past, snow tires were allowed for any vehicle during some chain restrictions no matter the type of vehicle. The change is specifically for the length of Mt. Rose Highway, Kingsbury Grade and U.S. 50 between Glenbrook and Carson City. Tire and chain requirements won’t change on any other highway corridors, according to NDOT.

How to tell if your tires qualify as ‘snow tires’:

Both Nevada and California define “snow tires” as having special tread for greater traction on a slipper surface AND have a sidewall marking (M-S, M/S, international symbols) indicating that it is an approved all-weather tires. The tire must have at least 3/16 inches of tread depth.

Roadside chain restriction signs have been updated to reflect the change.

The switch to chains is aimed at helping traffic move better – and more safely – around the Tahoe area, according to NDOT. More than 300 crashes have happened on the roads in three recent winters, according to NDOT.

Updated Nevada road conditions, including winter road closures, are available by calling 511 or going to nvroads.com.

Related Articles: NDOT

By performing a battery check, we can help save you the money, time and frustration with electrical system or unexpected battery failures. The advanced testing system tests the battery’s ability to deliver the correct current, to anticipate what temperature a battery could fail to crank your vehicle.

EARLY DETECTION

The purpose of early detection and preventive maintenance is to find a battery problem before a battery failure leaves you broke down, in the cold. It could be as simple as looking for cracks in a belt or excess wear. Even though your vehicle started today, your battery could fail when you least expect it. Come into any of our locations in the Reno area to have your battery tested.

Discover your battery’s condition in a few minutes. Early Detection Test only determines if a battery is good or going bad; it can detect if it is questionable. There are 3 possible conditions when testing of your battery:

  • BAD – Needs replace soon
  • MARGINAL – May fail in extreme to moderate cold or heat
  • GOOD – In 6 to 8 months you should re-test
  • MARGINALITY – The battery may start the car but its performance has started to decline. Extreme cold or heat may cause a marginal battery to completely fail.

Know when to expect battery problems:

Winter Car Breakdown - Woman Call For Help

  • Battery – Over 30% of vehicles with batteries 3 years or older can experience battery failure.
  • Heat – Whether from climate or high under-hood operating temperatures, heat speeds up battery corrosion.
  • Cold in Extreme conditions – Retards the battery’s chemical reaction that creates the cranking power in a vehicle and increases the current needed to start a vehicle.
  • Continuing to Crank with Little Driving – drains battery power without giving the vehicle’s charging system a chance to recharge the battery.

Living in certain areas can affect the life of your battery. You should inspect your battery and replace every 3-5 years. Batteries working in colder area’s last longer than warmer climates.

Related Articles: Avoid Winter Battery Failure

Among the many threats facing drivers during winter is the most dangerous of them all: Slippery, hard-to-spot and potentially deadly black ice.

“The biggest danger [with black ice] is that you are at the mercy of your vehicle and the ice until your car passes over it,” said Julie Lee, vice president and national director of AARP Driver Safety.

Black ice forms most often when it’s raining and air is at or below 32 degrees Fahrenheit at the surface. The low ground temperature causes the precipitation to freeze upon impact, thus creating ice. Sleet and the refreezing of runoff from melting snow can also generate black ice.

The thin nature and complexion of black ice makes it extremely difficult to spot, but using a car thermometer as an initial gauge may be helpful in determining the road conditions. Black ice gets its name from its ability to blend in with its surroundings.

A car thermometer, like any digital thermometer, tries to find the air’s ambient temperature. So, if a vehicle’s thermometer is close to freezing, the driver should take extra precaution behind the wheel.

While driving on black ice is similar in some regards to driving on snow, the biggest difference between the two is the amount of traction the vehicle retains. Ice causes no traction until the car has passed over the icy spot.

Due to a vehicle’s lack of traction on ice, the basic rule for driving on black ice is to stay calm and let the vehicle pass over it.

We would like to encourage all residents to buy local and help support business owners in our community. Use the hashtag #buylocalreno and share how you’re keeping dollars in the #biggestlittlecity. Sierra Car Care and Tire Center is one of the last few locally owned gas / service / repair / tire store in the Reno area.

Nearest AAA Approved Auto Repair Location to 89509 in Reno, NV

Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Centers are some of the leading auto repair shops in town. All automotive repair and mechanic services are performed by highly qualified mechanics. Our mechanic shops work on numerous vehicles daily with the best vehicle repair equipment, and are capable of servicing a variety of makes and models.

Whether you drive a passenger car, medium-size truck, mini-van, or SUV, our ASE Certified mechanics strive to ensure that your vehicle will be performing its best. Our superior standards show that our mechanics always have your best interests in mind. Plus, we offer the industry’s best warranty coverage.

Looking for a one-stop automotive repair shop? Than look no further, and allow our highly qualified mechanics to estimate the extent of auto repair you may be looking at. To set up an appointment now, call 1-775-525-2420 or contact us online.

Why Buy Local?

  1. Keep the dollars in our community- every dollar spent locally generates three dollars in local economic success
  2. Local business creates local jobs
  3. If everyone shifted 10 percent of their spending to local businesses, we would generate $350 million in our community

What is a Small Business?

The U.S. Small Business Administration defines a small business as: “Independently owned and operated, is organized for profit, and is not dominant in its field. Depending on the industry, size standard eligibility is based on the average number of employees for the preceding twelve months or on sales volume averaged over a three-year period.

Examples of SBA general size standards include the following:

Manufacturing: Maximum number of employees may range from 500 to 1500, depending on the type of product manufactured;

Wholesaling: Maximum number of employees may range from 100 to 500 depending on the particular product being provided;

Services: Annual receipts may not exceed $2.5 to $21.5 million, depending on the particular service being provided;

Retailing: Annual receipts may not exceed $5.0 to $21.0 million, depending on the particular product being provided;

General and Heavy Construction: General construction annual receipts may not exceed $13.5 to $17 million, depending on the type of construction;

Special Trade Construction: Annual receipts may not exceed $7 million; and

Agriculture: Annual receipts may not exceed $0.5 to $9.0 million, depending on the agricultural product.”

Sierra Car Care Locations

Sierra Car Care and Tire Centers – Lakeside Service – Reno, NV Location Details

Sierra Car Care and Tire Centers – Northwest Service – Reno, NV Location Details

Sierra Car Care and Tire Centers – Village Service – Reno, NV Location Details

When winter is near, many motorists begin winterizing their vehicles to prepare them for the cold, ice, and snow.

Winterization involves checking and changing many different components. Coolant should be changed to help ensure that liquids do not freeze and prevent the engine from starting. Likewise, the starting and charging system should be checked.

It is important to keep in mind that an old battery is especially prone to failure in winter, because cold weather can slow the chemical reaction required to generate electricity.

Other items that may be checked include the windshield wiper blades. During winter, increased precipitation can hinder visibility. As such, it is good to have working blades.

Under winter driving conditions, balding or worn out tires can be especially dangerous. Many motorists switch their regular tires to all weather or snow tires, which tend to handle winter conditions better than regular tires. Ultimately, during the winterization checkup maintenance, our service staff will make sure that your vehicle is equipped to handle the tough winter conditions.

Schedule a Winterization Service at any one of our Sierra Car Care and Tire Center locations in the Reno area.

ASE, is short for the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. Since 1972 our independent non-profit organization has worked to improve the quality of vehicle repair and service by testing and certifying automotive professionals.

 

 

ASE promotes excellence in vehicle repair, service and parts distribution. Almost 300,000 Automotive Technicians and Service Professionals hold ASE Certifications. ASE Certified Professionals work in every part of the automotive service industry. ASE certifies automotive technicians and service professionals, not the auto shops.

Why Does ASE Exist?

To protect the automotive service consumer, shop owner, and the automotive technician. We test and certify automotive professionals so that shop owners and service customers can better gauge a technicians level of expertise before contracting the technician’s services. We certify the automotive technician professional so they can offer tangible proof of their technical knowledge. ASE Certification testing means peace of mind for auto service managers, customers.

How Does ASE Certification Work?

In addition to passing an ASE Certification test, automotive technicians must have two years of on the job training or one year of on the job training and a two-year degree in automotive repair to qualify for certification.

The tests are challenging. Only two out of every three test-takers pass on their first attempt. To remain ASE certified, professionals must retest every five years to keep up with ever-advancing automotive technology.

Sierra Car Care and Tire Centers Promote ASE Certified Technicians

Please bring your vehicle into any one of our three locations of Sierra Car Care and Tire Centers in the Reno area and one of our ASE Certified Technicians will get you back on the road, fast.

 

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 4 other followers

Archives

Categories

%d bloggers like this: