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Spring is here! With more sun and rising temperatures comes an entirely different strategy for car care. Fortunately, we’re here to help. Here are a few simple tips to help you care for your vehicle as winter makes way for spring.

Check Your Tire Pressures

Tire pressure is especially important in the spring. As air temperatures get cooler during the winter, tire pressure decreases. As the air in your tires get warmer in the spring, tire pressure can increase. If the pressure increases past your manufacturer specification (because you added air during the winter), it can seriously affect your car’s drivability and fuel economy and increase the risk of a tire blowout. This is an important part of car care, so if you don’t feel comfortable checking your car’s tire pressures by yourself, bring it into an one of our locations to check the tire pressure.

Inspect Your Wiper Blades

As spring temperatures warm up, check your wiper blades for any signs of cracking or wear. The wiper blades themselves can wear dramatically over the winter months due to ice buildup or other harsh conditions. In most parts of the country, you’ll need those wipers for spring rains, so be sure they’re in good working order after winter comes and goes.

Check Under the Hood

Check belts and hoses to ensure the cold winter temperatures haven’t rendered them brittle or heavily worn. Check your coolant to make sure it’s not too old — an important factor for avoiding overheating as temperatures gradually climb. If you aren’t comfortable performing these checks on your own, contact any of our locations. While you may get billed for an hour of labor, it’s better than going into the spring with potential issues lurking under your hood.

Check Alignment and Suspension

Winter is known for being harsh on roads, and that in turn can be harsh on your vehicle. If you find yourself frequently traversing roads with huge potholes or rocks that have emerged from the asphalt, it could ruin your car’s alignment or damage suspension components. Our advice: If you’ve taken your car to a mechanic to check under the hood, ask for a quick suspension and alignment check to make sure nothing is too far outside the manufacturer’s specifications.

Modern engines and lubricants are far superior to those of even ten years ago. As a result, most vehicle manufacturers now recommend engine oil changes every 5,000 or 7,500 miles under normal operating conditions. However, the auto service industry has long encouraged more frequent oil changes based on the belief that most drivers operate their vehicles under “severe service” conditions. But do they really?

Today, mileage-based oil change intervals are becoming a thing of the past. A growing number of new vehicles are equipped with maintenance reminder systems that determine the need for oil changes based on the owner’s actual driving habits. In practice, most drivers find that these systems call for an oil change at around 7,500 miles and, on vehicles factory filled with synthetic oil, the change interval may be as high as 15,000 miles!

Another outdated belief is that oil color is a valid indicator of the need for a change. While new oil has a light gold to brown tint, the fact that oil in service turns dark brown (or black in diesel engines) does not mean it is “dirty” and needs replacement. It only indicates the detergents in the oil are doing their job of keeping tiny particulates in suspension, while any contaminants large enough to cause engine wear are trapped by the oil filter. In fact, because of their superior detergent packages, synthetic oils often turn darker faster than conventional oils.

Checking Engine Oil
It is easiest to check the oil level when your engine is cold. There is no possibility of burns, and cool oil stays on the dipstick better, making it easier to measure the level. If you have been driving, wait a few minutes before checking the level to allow oil to drain back into the oil pan.

  • Park the vehicle on level ground with the engine off.
  • Open the hood, then find and remove the engine oil dipstick.
  • Wipe the end of the dipstick clean with a rag, and note the level markings. Some dipsticks have one mark for FULL and another for ADD. Other dipsticks may simply have small holes indicating the maximum and minimum oil levels, still others may have a cross- hatch area indicating the acceptable range.
  • Insert the dipstick fully back into its tube, then remove it immediately and read the level.
  • If the oil level is at or below the ADD mark, then add enough oil to bring the level up to the FULL mark. Do not overfill. Typically, the distance between the ADD and FULL marks is equal to one quart of oil.
  • If the oil on the dipstick appears milky or thick, or is very thin with a strong fuel odor, there may be a mechanical problem. Have the engine checked by a qualified technician.

Sierra Car Care recommends that motorists carefully review the oil change interval recommendations in their vehicle owner’s manual, including the definition of severe service use, and then change their car’s engine oil only as often as really necessary. While over maintaining your vehicle won’t hurt the engine, it costs more money and consumes additional natural resources.

tire-waterOIL CHANGE: Buy 1, Get 1 FREE! Check out other great coupons for Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Center on LocalSaver!

$89.95 A/C SERVICE good through 7/31/16

free-summer-travel-inspection

AC-service free-oil-change smog-check

Thank You from Sierra Car Care

and then there’s us: a service station.

That means we’re more focused on keeping your car running its best than sending you out the door with a soda and a pile of reheated, spicy mystery meat. Each Sierra Car Care station is full-on about full-service, meaning we offer brake service, suspension and alignment, cooling system repair, computer control diagnostics, transmission repair, and, well, you get the idea. As we see it, an efficient car is far better for you than a day-old burrito. Thank you.

Enjoy these coupons, valid for a limited time.

Sierra Car Care Locations

Here, at Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Centers, we want our customers to be in the know about how to properly care for their car or truck. We provide an extensive range of auto service repair / maintenance services, including:

  • Belts and HosesCar Tune-up from Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Center
  • Brake Repair
  • Vehicle Inspection
  • Lube, Oil, and Filter Change
  • Wheel Alignment
  • Exhaust System Repair
  • Climate Control Systems
  • Cooling System Repair
  • Tire Services
  • Wheel Services
  • Axel, CV Joint, Driveshaft Repair
  • Diesel Engine Repair
  • Differential RepairASE Certified Technicians
  • Electrical and Electronic Systems
  • Engine Diagnostics and Performance
  • Four Wheel Drive System (4WD)
  • Nitrogen Inflation
  • Preventive Maintenance
  • Roadside Assistance
  • Starting, Charging, and Batteries
  • Steering and Suspension System
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
  • Transmission Repair

Hopefully, with the following helpful car care tips you will be able to improve gas mileage and reduce tire wear when driving in and around Reno, NV and Sparks, NV. We also hope this helps you understand when and why your car needs to be serviced by the professional ASE Certified Technicians at Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Centers full service auto repair shop.

Car Maintenance and Care

  • Change your fluids on time, every time.
  • Change your oil every 3,000 miles for regular, 5,000 miles for synthetic oil.
  • Change antifreeze fluid every 30,000 miles.
  • Change brake fluid every 30,000 miles.
  • Change transmission fluid every 30,000 miles.
  • Schedule a maintenance check every 15, 30, 60, and 90,000 miles.
  • Replace your air filter every 12 months or 12,000 miles (whichever comes first).
  • Replace your fuel filter every 2 years or 24,000 miles (whichever comes first).

Tire Maintenance and Care

  • Tire Tread Comparison MST Tire Center or Mill Street TireRotate your tires every 5,000 miles or every 6 months.
  • Check your tire pressures approximately once a week. Low tire pressures can affect fuel economy, handling and comfort. To accurately measure your tire pressure, check tires when they are cold. Wait at least three hours after driving.
  • Always make sure that your wheels are properly aligned. Badly aligned wheels will again lead to dragging of the car on the road.
  • Check your spare tire each month and keep it properly inflated so it¹s ready to go when you need it most.
  • Use the penny trick to determine if the tread on your tires is worn to low. Take a penny and put Abraham Lincoln’s head into one of the grooves of the tread. If part of his head is covered by the tread, you’re OK. If you can see all of his head, it’s time to replace the tire. When the tread is worn down to 1/16 of an inch, tires must be replaced.

Gas Mileage Tips

  • gas_savingsCheck and/or change your air filter every 6 months to improve fuel economy and keep your engine running smoothly.
  • Don’t top off. Don’t bother topping off when filling your car’s gas tank. Any additional gas is just going to slop around or seep out.
  • Tighten up that gas cap. Gas will evaporate from your car’s gas tank if it has an escape. Loose, missing, or damaged gas caps cause 147 million gallons of gas to evaporate each year.
  • Go for the shade. The hot summer sun that makes the inside of your car feel like a sauna also evaporates fuel from your gas tank.
  • Use the right oil. You can improve your car’s gas mileage by 1 percent to 2 percent by using the manufacturer’s recommended grade of motor oil.

And most important of all……

  • Always check for potential problems before they happen. Following these recommendations will help keep your vehicle running smoothly for years to come. However, please refer to the required maintenance schedule provided by your vehicle’s manufacturer for the intervals specific to your vehicle.

So, give Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Centers a call at (775) 525-2420 today to schedule your next maintenance appointment.

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Gas for Goodness: Supporting Our Community

Cystic_Fibrosis_Walk_LogoEvery Wednesday in April, we’ll make a ($.01) penny donation to a local charity for every gallon of gas sold from our Sierra Car Care/MST Tire Centers. And we’ll donate $1.00 per tire sold each Saturday at MST Tire Center on Mill Street.

All donations in April will support the CYSTIC FIBROSIS FOUNDATION – Nevada Chapter.

Cystic fibrosis is an inherited chronic disease that affects the lungs and digestive system of about 30,000 children and adults in the United States (70,000 worldwide). A defective gene and its protein product cause the body to produce unusually thick, sticky mucus that:

  • Clogs the lungs and leads to life-threatening lung infections; and
  • Obstructs the pancreas and stops natural enzymes from helping the body break down and absorb food.

Great Strides is the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s largest national fundraising event. Each year, more than 125,000 people participate in hundreds of walks across the country to raise funds for cystic fibrosis research and drug development.

We need the public’s continued support to fulfill our mission of finding a cure and improving the quality of life of those with the disease.

So when you need gas or new tires, you can also support our local CYSTIC FIBROSIS FOUNDATION – Nevada Chapter by visiting any of our 5 locations on Wednesdays for gas and Saturdays for tires (Mill Street location only).

Walk in Great Strides today and help add tomorrows to the lives of those living with cystic fibrosis.

For more information,visit:
http://www.cff.org/chapters/nevada/
Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cysticfibrosisfoundation
Thanks for supporting our community!

Oil Change SyntheticDoes oil change with the weather?
Your engine depends on the free flow of oil through all working parts. When the weather gets colder your oil will thicken and take longer to flow between those moving parts, which may cause damage to and/or reduce the life of your engine.

When should I get an oil change?
You should change your oil when the weather begins to get colder or hotter by approx. 10-20 degrees. Motor oil thins as it heats and thickens as it cools. So, with the right additives to help it resist thinning too much, an oil can be rated for one viscosity when cold, and another for when it’s hot.

At Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Centers we recommended that you get an oil change every 3,000-5,000 miles depending on the year and model of your vehicle. If you live in the city, with a more stop-and-go driving routine, we recommend a change every 2,000-3,000 miles.

Is oil important for the engine?
Without oil to lubricate and cool moving parts, keep them clean and help to seal the pistons in the cylinders, the engine would seize almost immediately. So, yes, oil is important.

Recommended Oil Types 
The weight or viscosity of oil recommended for your vehicle should be located in your owner’s manual, or you can just ask one of our ASE certified Technicians. Changing your oil and filter according to this schedule can save you big $$ and reduce the need for repairs down the road.

After determining the correct viscosity, the next choice in motor oil is what type? Higher mileage blends can benefit engines over 75K miles. Synthetic blends and full synthetics can bring additional protection and often flow more easily during severe cold than conventional oils.

If you are not sure, just ask! We have trained professionals at all of our 5 locations in the Reno and Sparks area. We are more than happy to assist you, for appointments or walk-ups.

Our fully qualified ASE Certified Technicians will do everything possible to keep your vehicle running safely and efficiently.

Please visit: www.sierracarcare.com for a location nearest you.
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SPECIAL OFFER: Buy One Oil Change, Get One FREE!
Come in for an oil change and receive a free oil change voucher good for up to one year. Pass it to a friend, loved one, or keep it for yourself.
Offer Expires: September 30, 2013
Mention Coupon Code: FREE OIL
___________________________________________________

Charity Logo'sAt Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Center we feel  that community support is important for our city’s growth and success. Good community support promotes business and job growth in a range of fields. That is why we are passionate about giving back to the community and people within our city.

Every month we donate a portion of sales from the pump at our Sierra Car Care locations, and a portion of new tire sales from MST Tire Center (formerly Mill Street Tire), to benefit a local charity.

Our Gas for Goodness Program provides awareness and exposure for the chosen non-profit over the course of one month. The charity is featured on all of our social media sites by displaying photos/videos and information about the charity.

There are so many worthwhile causes and we at MST/SCC feel very strongly about giving back to the community.

You can help local charities too, just by purchasing from Sierra Car Care and MST Tire Center.

If you are a charity or would like to nominate a charity for us to consider for Charity of the Month, please submit your suggestion to us at our Main Office through our online form.

So when you need gas or new tires, you can also support a local charity by visiting any of our 5 locations on Wednesdays for gas and Saturdays for tires (Mill Street location only).

For more information,visit: www.SierraCarCare.com

Thanks for supporting our community!

Do you know a local charity you’d like us to consider supporting?
Please see details here.

Carefree vacation time

Here are a few vehicle maintenance tips to keep your family on the road, while saving you money this summer.

Whether you choose to perform minor check-ups  and repairs yourself or you prefer a professional mechanic look it over, here are a few tips that  can keep you safe before you hit the road.

We want your journey to be as carefree as your vacation.

Tire Pressure
Check tire pressure to make sure all tires, including the spare, are properly inflated and have been rotated. You will benefit by getting higher gas mileage and a decreased chance of blowout.

Also, if your tires have been filled with nitrogen, we suggest re-filling with nitrogen as well. You can see our MST Tire Center (formerly known as Mill Street Tire) for Nitrogen Services.

Tire TreadTire Tread Comparison MST Tire Center or Mill Street Tire
Check the tread depth of all your vehicle and trailer tires before you go.Put a penny in the tread and if you can’t see Lincoln, you are safe to hit the road. But if you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, the tire tread is likely too low.

You may need to invest in new tires before any long road trips or off-roading. Go to any of our  5 locations for new tire recommendations and check out our current tire specials here.

Brakes
Do your brakes squeak, squeal, or grind, or does your pedal feel “soft”? If the last inspection was more than 24,000 miles or 12 months ago, you may need your brakes inspected by a professional ASE certified technician.

Oil
Make sure the oil in your vehicle is filled up to the fill line and you can still “see through” it. An oil change is recommended every 3,000 to 5,000 miles. But, if the oil is black, that is usually an indication you need to change the oil and filter.

We offer a Buy one, Get one oil change FREE Deal. See the yellow coupon below for details.

Transmissions and Gear Boxes
Are you hauling a trailer or any toys, like; boats, ATVs, or motorcycles?  You may want to check and/or change the transmission fluid in your vehicle before you make that long haul.

Lights and Windshield WipersWindshield Wipers at Sierra Car Care
Walk around the vehicle and make sure all lights are in working order and your light casings are clean. If your wiper blades are worn out, they may need replacing.

Learn more
In many cases, early detection of engine or tire problems can be the difference between $ and  $$$. Bring your vehicle into any of our Reno or  Sparks locations for a FREE Vehicle Inspection. Includes: test antifreeze, battery, charging system, belts, hoses, fluids, and tires!

Our fully qualified ASE Certified Technicians will do everything possible to keep your vehicle running safely and efficiently.

Please visit: www.sierracarcare.com
for a location nearest you.

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SPECIAL OFFER: Buy One Oil Change, Get One FREE!
Come in for an oil change and receive a free oil change voucher good for up to one year. Pass it to a friend, loved one, or keep it for yourself.
Offer Expires: June 30, 2013
Mention Coupon Code: FREE OIL
___________________________________________________

Gas for goodnessScoutreach Boy Scouts of America

Every Wednesday in June, we’ll make a donation to a local charity for every gallon of gas sold from our Sierra Car Care/MST Tire Centers. And we’ll donate $1.00 per tire sold each Saturday at MST Tire Center on Mill Street.

All donations in June will support Scoutreach. This sponsorship will allow 45 boys to go to day and overnight summer camps that would not be able to attend otherwise.

The Scoutreach Division gives special leadership and emphasis to urban and rural Scouting programs. Scoutreach is the Nevada Area Council’s commitment to making sure that all young people have an opportunity to join Scouting, regardless of their circumstances, neighborhood or ethnic background.

“I think that being a scout is good for learning about sportsmanship, responsibility, and team work.  Some skills that I have learned being a scout are tying knots, jamboree, and teamwork.”  Andy,  Anderson Elementary

“Cub Scouts is helping me in everyday life because it has taught me about team work.  It teaches me to how be a leader, and I just like it because we learn to work together as a team.  That is why I like being a cub scout.”  Jordan D.,  Alice Maxwell Elementary

So when you need gas or new tires, you can also support our local Nevada Scoutreach Division by visiting any of our 5 locations on Wednesdays for gas and Saturdays for tires (Mill Street location only).

For more information,visit: www.Scoutreach.org
Thanks for supporting our community!

Do you know a local charity you’d like us to consider supporting?
Please see details here.

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