Standard Auto Care in Sacramento has a blog and videos that keep automobile owners abreast of what’s happening in the always changing automotive industry. Tom Hipp and his team of auto mechanics value our customers and want them to be as informed as possible. Check out Standard Auto Care’s blogs-videos:


Understanding Diagnostic Services

If a vehicle has a problem. Maybe a check engine light, a noise, overheating, leaks, or just not running well a diagnosis needs to be performed to determine the problem. Step one is to decide what kind of test needs to be performed to address the specific problem. We call this the preliminary evaluation. It is usually free and takes about 10 minutes. We will check things related to the complaint to both verify and, decide what tests need to be performed in order to proceed. We bill for these tests based on our hourly rate times the amount of time and materials needed to perform the test. We will give you an estimate for the test before we perform it and get your authorization. This authorization will be documented on your invoice. This does not guarantee that we will locate the problem after the test. We may be led to perform more tests on a deeper part of the system. We will explain in detail to you what needs to be done and how much it will cost. We will obtain your permission bef ... read more

How to Protect Your Car from Rodents

How to Protect Your Car from Rodents

Clever solutions to critters nibbling at your wires Rats! You can buy the most reliable car on Earth and still find convoluted electrical gremlins, fluid leaks, and even outright failure when rodents take up residence and begin chewing on wiring, hoses, plastic, and other critical car parts. This is especially a risk for cars stored over the winter, and those that have been parked for extended periods during the pandemic. Rodent-inflicted damage is an age-old problem that some observers say is increasing as automakers use more plant-based biodegradable materials to reduce waste. Several class-action lawsuits have been filed against major automakers in recent years alleging that soy-based products were to blame, but these court cases were later dismissed. Pest control company Terminix considers the temptations of tasty mate ... read more

Can a battery be bad and still start the car?

The average life span of a battery is 4 years if it’s taken care of. It is very possible for the battery to be defective but still starts the car. Generally, one of the cells shorts internally which significantly reduces the reserve capacity. That means if you were to leave the lights or radio on while the engine is not running the battery will run down much sooner and not start the car. We can easily test for this now with modern battery testers. In addition to not starting the car, a weak battery can damage the alternator by overworking it. We test your battery at our auto repair shop every time we do an oil change service. This helps to catch a weak battery before you become stranded. Sacramento can get very hot or very cold which are both hard on batteries. One other thing to remember is if you always drive short distances your battery may not recharge completely. An undercharged battery will have a much shorter lifespan. Battery manufacturers recommend putting the battery ... read more

Why did my gas mileage go down when summer arrived?

I get this question frequently when the seasons change. Here in Sacramento California when summer approaches,the fuel manufactures add additional chemicals to gas to compensate for hot weather and emissions. This can decrease mileage by 1-3 mpg. Don't be alarmed as this is normal.  Another issue could be the engine is over due for a tune up or is getting a buildup of carbon deposits from using cheap gas that does not have cleaners added. Getting a de-carb procedure performed every 30k miles is recommend. Also choose gas that advertises cleaner has been added. It's usually more expensive. You can also add fuel additive to your gas tank.  Last but not least if you're still concerned schedule a visit to your trusted repair shop for a check up

Should I worry about oil leaks on my car?

Is it really a big concern if I make sure it does not get low? I would like to add power steering and transmission fluid into this question as well. Aside from the obvious danger of damaging the engine, power steering pump, and, or rack & pinion or, the transmission, there is an insidious hidden damage that occurs from oil leaks of any kind. All these fluids are a petroleum product. Petroleum over time will dissolve rubber or plastic. There are many components on the undercarriage and engine compartment containing rubber or plastic. These can include engine mounts, steering and suspension boots, hoses, belts, electrical wiring. In my experience the damage created is normally more expensive than it would have been to fix the leak. So, if you’re thinking it’s ok to ignore those oil leaks think again

Prepare Your Vehicle For Ski Season

Prepare Your Vehicle For Ski Season

It’s November, and hopefully, ski season is just around the corner. Whether you’re headed for Tahoe or just up the road to Mt. Shasta, be sure your vehicle is as ready as you are to hit the slopes. Standard Auto Care in Sacramento can help you winterize your car for those long weekend trips. Call us at 916 924-8040 before you head out, or if you live south of us, stop by on your way. We’ll check your antifreeze and other fluids as well as your belts and hoses. We’ll also check your tires to be sure they have tread deep enough for the snow and are properly inflated. Under-or over-inflated tires can take you and your vehicle ice skating when you least expect it. Ski season is often snow driving season for beginners, so be extra careful if you’re new to snowy, icy conditions. You’ll want to watch out for other drivers, pedestrians, and animals, too. Before you head out, make sure you pack ... read more

How Do You Know if You Need Alternator Repair in Sacramento, CA?

The alternator is an important part of the car that keeps your battery charged and powers the electronic components when the car is running. The alternator works with the battery to provide electricity. It can be challenging for an inexperienced person to identify whether they are dealing with battery or alternator problems. If you are having power problems with your car, the best thing to do is contact a mechanic in Sacramento, CA. At Standard Auto Care, we can help with alternator repair and other maintenance tasks for your car. Signs that You Need Alternator Repair There are several signs that indicate it is time to repair the alternator. Keep in mind that it is common for the alternator to wear out over a lengthy period. This car repair is a standard maintenance task that will be required at least once or twice during the lifespan of the car. How does the car react when you turn the key? If you notice it i ... read more



Best 5 Mobile Apps for Road Trips

Best 5 Mobile Apps for Road Trips

Autumn can be the best time to take a road trip. Why? The kids are back in school, a lot of people are busy with work, and many hotels are less booked. To get you in the mood for a day trip or a weekend getaway outside of Sacramento, here are five of the best mobile apps for road trips.   Foliage Leaf Peepr: See autumn leaves with this app.     Yelp: Find out the best places to dine, to shop, and to visit with this app.     Waze Navigation and Live Traffic: Find alternate traffic routes with this app.     GasBuddy: Discover lower gas rates with this app.     City Tour Worldwide: Tour historical cities with this app.   But before you hit the road, make sure your vehicle is ready. Now is the perfect time to make sure your oil has been changed, your fluids are topped off, your tires are in great shape, your wheels are aligned, and your fuel is burning efficiently. If you’re not certain your car, truck, or SUV is road-read ... read more

Prepare Your College Students For Safe Driving Back To School

Prepare Your College Students For Safe Driving Back To School

With the summer now behind us, the ‘back-to-school’ season is upon the families of Sacramento! Except for parents of recent high school graduates and older, their school supplies have changed from crayons and construction paper to laptops and car keys! Especially if this is your household college student’s first trip to their university, preparing them with all the supplies, resources, and basic skills they’ll need for the coming school year is important, and that includes preparing them to drive safely. Here are a few ways to help your teen drive safely to and from college this year: Pack their car up with emergency tools: glow sticks, jumper cables, a car jack, a spare tire, first aid kit, a backup phone charger, etc. Show your teen how and when to use all of these tools, so that in the event of an emergency they can really help. A few blankets, some non-perishable snacks and sealed water, and a flashlight with some batteries are all good items to store in t ... read more

How To Tell If Your Vehicle’s A/C Needs Service

Sacramento can sure get sizzling hot this time of year. With temperatures between 90 – 110 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s hard to stay cool whether you’re indoors or in your vehicle. But how do you know if your vehicle’s air conditioning system is doing okay or if it’s struggling to keep your car cool? Here are a few signs indicating that your vehicle’s A/C unit needs service: 1. Your air conditioner is blowing hot, even when you have it turned to the coolest setting. 2. There’s a funky smell of mildew coming from the air vents. 3. You hear strange sounds, or you don’t hear the air compressor come on at all. 4. You see puddles of water forming on your floor mats under the air vents. 5. You spot greasy film on the A/C components, indicating there’s a refrigerant leak. If your vehicle is showing any of these signs, it would be a wise move to bring it into us here at Standard Auto Care in Sacramento. Our team of auto mechanics will per ... read more

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