We Now Do Smog Checks!

Smog Icon

Welcome to our Blog page!

Our blogs are updated once a month, usually on the first day of the month. On this page, we offer advice, tips, and insights for becoming a safer driver and for better travels on Chico roads. Bookmark this page and remember to check back!

If you need auto repair service, don’t forget that you can schedule an appointment at this link for D&E Auto Repair in Chico. We look forward to seeing you! Remember that you are a part of the family at D&E Auto Repair in Chico. We’re located at 3328 Esplanade St., Chico, CA 95973.

Yearly Archives: 2021

Do I Need a New Battery?

Today’s vehicles have more electrical components and do-dads than ever before. This really strains your electrical system, making it hard for the battery to keep up. Think about it: electric seats, seat heaters, power locks, windows and sunroofs. And then we have all the power outlets for our cell phones, computers, and DVD players. We also have navigation systems and powerful stereos. Plus, there are all the engine and transmission computers, traction control, stability control, anti-lock brakes, sensors and on and on. Even the security system is running off the battery while the car is turned off. And of course, summer heat can take a real toll on battery life. Fortunately, battery technology has given us resilient batteries that are able to meet these strenuous requirements. But the fact is; batteries just wear out over time. Eventually, every battery gets to the point where it cannot hold enough of a charge to start your car. Sometimes batteries need to be replaced because t ... read more

Spark Plugs

In CHICO, CA, the days when CHICO drivers changed their spark plugs every couple of years has ended. Back in the day, spark plugs really did wear out that often. A couple of things are different now… First, spark plugs are made of better materials that last longer for CHICO drivers and they're designed better. The second reason spark plugs used to have to be changed in vehicles and other autos was that they were fouled up with carbon deposits. The deposits built up when fuel wasn't burned completely. With modern engine management controls that just doesn't happen as often. Engine control computers precisely time when fuel is injected into the engine and when spark plugs fire. Unless something's wrong, spark plugs just don't foul like they used to. Electricity from the battery goes into a coil that allows power to build up to anywhere from 12,000 to 45,000 volts, depending on the vehicle. The engine management computer tells the coil when to release the pow ... read more

How To Beat The Heat In Chico

How To Beat The Heat In Chico

Grant Porter on Unsplash Now that we’re in April, temperatures are rising, and we will be using our automotive A/C more often. In this month’s blog, we offer some tips on how to beat the heat in Chico. First and foremost, let’s talk about the health of your automotive air conditioning system. If COVID kept you home most of the time and you put fewer miles on your car throughout the pandemic, you may be surprised to learn that your vehicle is in significant need of a safety inspection.  We are NOT saying this to scare you. We advise a complete safety inspection of your car because it sat for too long without getting the drive time it needs. Your A/C system could have an excess of mold, refrigerant leaks, an ... read more

Categories:

Cooling System

Need A Suspension Inspection At D AND E AUTO REPAIR In CHICO?

Your suspension system keeps your car up off the road. From there, it’s responsible for a smooth and comfortable ride. It also keeps your wheels firmly planted over bumps and through curves. Your suspension system has many critical parts that do a big job. They should be inspected for damage and excessive wear at least once a year. A good time would be when you get your semiannual alignment check. Here are some warning signs of suspension problems: the car pulls to one side, wandering, erratic steering, uneven tire wear, leaning, shocks bottom out, poor ride or handling, oil leaking from shocks, and excessive bouncing. Now suspension parts just wear out over time. Shocks and struts eventually lose their ability to control your ride. If you’re in an accident, your suspension can be damaged or knocked out of alignment. Even a minor accident, like hitting a curb, pothole or large rock can mess things up. If you suspect suspension problems, ask for an inspection and let us s ... read more

Simple Answers from D AND E AUTO REPAIR for CHICO: Improve Fuel Economy

Question What can I do to improve my fuel economy? Answer There are a lot of things you can do – some of them are easy. One of the first things you should do is make sure your tires are properly inflated. On the inside of driver’s door or door jamb is a plate that says the correct tire pressure. Careful – there might be a different pressure for the front and rear tires. Check them at least once a month. Carrying extra weight in the vehicle hurts fuel economy. Leave unnecessary stuff home. Do we even need to mention driving fast and jackrabbit starts? Gently accelerate and plan your stops so that you can ease into them a bit. This really makes a big difference. Now there are several maintenance items that improve fuel economy. Lubricants should be replaced on schedule – dirty oil, transmission fluid and differential fluid cause more friction and drag which hurt fuel economy. A big one is having a fuel system cleaning done if needed. A dirty fuel system can r ... read more

Suspension Integrity In Chico

Your skeleton provides the structure to hold up your weight. Your joints cushion you as you walk and allow you to change direction. Your vehicle’s suspension system is similar: It bears the weight of your vehicle, absorbs bumps in the road and controls the body as you steer. Like the bones in your body, suspension parts are connected by joints that allow all the components to move as they should. Over time and miles, the joints start to wear, and your suspension gets loose and doesn’t operate as precisely as before, reducing proper tire contact with the road. An accident, pothole or hitting a curb or rock can also damage or break suspension components. If you’ve ever hurt your foot, you know you’ve had to walk differently to keep it from hurting as bad. Do that long enough and your ankle, knee, hip and even your back will start to hurt from the strain of not moving normally. The same thing happens in your vehicle when one joint or part is worn or damaged: it ... read more

Better Service, Better Fuel Economy in CHICO

Maintaining your car or truck will make it more efficient.  It works the way it was designed to and that means it uses less fuel:  And you save money. To help organize our discussion, let’s think of things that rob us of fuel economy in two ways: increased friction and inefficient fuel combustion. Friction.  Anything that increases friction increases drag or load on the engine.  It must work harder to overcome the drag – and that takes more fuel.  The first thing that comes to mind is engine oil.  Low oil means there’s not enough to fully lubricate the engine so there’s more friction.  The wrong viscosity and grade of oil can also adversely affect fuel economy.  Dirty oil won’t lubricate as well as clean oil. The same principles apply to transmission fluid.  Getting your oil changed and transmission serviced on schedule will reduce friction and save money.  Consider upgrading to synthetic oils in your dif ... read more

Categories:

Fuel System

Upsizing Wheels and Tires in Chico

Hello CHICO drivers! Let's pretend you have three doughnuts right in front of you for our discussion of upsizing wheels and tires. Hey, don't eat them now – you're going to need them later. Many CHICO drivers want to accessorize their car and make it theirs. One of the easiest ways to get a custom look is to get some custom wheels (http://dandeautorpr.mynapatools.com/contact-us/). There are thousands of wheel designs out there to get you the look you want. And for many, that look includes bigger wheels. It used to be that vehicles came from the factory with 15 or 16 inch wheels. Now 16, 17 and even 18 inchers are standard. And the factories are offering optional wheel packages up to 20 inches or more. So let's talk about what CHICO drivers should consider when they want to upsize their wheels. It's not exactly a do it yourself project, so you need to know a thing or two before you get started. The most important term to know is rolling diameter. The rolling ... read more

Categories:

Tires

Do I Need AWD? (Pros and Cons of AWD)

When the cold weather rolls around and the first slippery days confront drivers, it's tempting to say, "I need an all-wheel-drive or four-wheel-drive vehicle to deal with the weather." Well, maybe you don't. Maybe there's another solution that is much more economical and may even have better results for you. There are a lot of people who think having power at all four corners of the vehicle is the answer to all winter can throw at you. True, you can get going more quickly in an all-wheel-drive (AWD) or 4- wheel-drive (4WD) vehicle. That's because power can be sent to each wheel, and four traction spots are better than two. And an AWD or 4WD vehicle may have a higher resale value in places with harsh winters. But AWD and 4WD vehicles cost hundreds, even thousands, more. They use more fuel economy and require additional maintenance. Some people who get AWD and 4WD vehicles think they're invincible in the snow when the truth is they might get going more eas ... read more

Diesel Engines

When someone mentions diesels around CHICO, images of smoky, rattly trucks may spring to mind. The fact is that the modern, clean diesel engine is much more refined than in the old days. Sure, diesel engines remain a very popular choice with heavy duty pick-up truck drivers in CHICO, but they are finding their way into nearly every segment of the CA automotive market. Why is that? Well, it's science. Diesel fuel contains more energy than the same amount of gasoline. So it takes less diesel fuel to do the same amount of work as gas.  so CHICO diesel drivers get more miles per gallon/kilometers per liter and lower emissions. In Europe, where fuel is very expensive and good fuel economy is very important, around half of passenger vehicles are powered by diesel engines. This goes for small economy cars all the way up to the world's most luxury vehicles. The driving experience is also very good with diesel engines.  In fact CHICO residents may not even be able to tell th ... read more

12