Archive for July 24, 2013

Battery Replacement At Exclusive Motors In Placentia

Hello, welcome to Exclusive Motors. Today’s focus is batteries. It seems like everything in Placentia runs on batteries. Of course, the batteries we’re most concerned with here at Exclusive Motors are those in our customer’s vehicles. Just like the batteries in our smoke detectors or TV remote, car batteries wear out and need to be replaced. There are a couple of things Placentia drivers should know when looking for a new battery.

Look for two measurements that come into play: cold cranking amps and reserve capacity.

Let’s start with cold cranking amps. Battery Replacement At Exclusive Motors This can be thought of as the power output used to start a cold Mercedes – Lexus engine. The number of cold cranking amps you need depends on your vehicle and where you live in California, specifically how cold it is. (Many California car owners have first-hand experience trying to start their car on a cold winter morning.) The two factors are that the colder your Mercedes – Lexus’s engine is, the more power it takes to turn the engine over to get it started. It has all that cold, sluggish oil to contend with.

The other factor is that the chemical reaction in the battery that creates electrical energy is less efficient when the temperature dips. At Exclusive Motors, we consult the table shown below. Let’s say it’s eighty degrees Fahrenheit in Placentia. At that temperature, 100% of the battery’s power is available. At freezing, only 65% of battery power is available, but it requires 155% as much power to start the engine as it did at eighty degrees.

As you can see from the chart, the colder it gets, more power’s needed, but the available power drops.

Percent of Power Available Celsius Fahrenheit Power Required  
100 27 80 100  
65 0 32 155  
40 -22 0 210  
25 -32 20 350  

So if you live where it’s cold in California, you need a battery with more cold cranking amps than you do where it’s moderate or hot. The battery that originally came with your Mercedes – Lexus was based on averages. At Exclusive Motors, we like to remind Placentia car owners that they should always get at least as many cold cranking amps as their vehicle manufacturers recommend, but may want to upgrade if they live where it gets real cold.

And the type of engine you have will impact the battery you need: A six-cylinder engine requires more cold cranking amps than a four. An eight cylinder needs even more. And diesel Mercedes – Lexuss require more than a gasoline engine with the same number of cylinders.

Now on to reserve capacity: It’s a measurement of the number of minutes of reserve power the battery has at a given load. The number is more important to Placentia car owners these days because of parasitic drain. Parasitic drain is the battery energy that’s used when the key is off in your Mercedes – Lexus. So, the power drawn by the security system, the remote start system, even the power the computers require to maintain their memory.

Reserves are also needed when you make very short trips around Placentia. You’re not driving long enough for the battery to recover the energy it used to start the engine. So go with the minimum recommended by your manufacturer or Exclusive Motors and upgrade if you need more.

Talk with us at Exclusive Motors about your options. If you need more from your battery, a larger, heavy-duty battery may be called for. At Exclusive Motors in Placentia, we remind our customers that it’s very important that the new battery fits your Mercedes – Lexus: the terminals can’t be touching other parts.

Batteries are a big ticket item for most California car owners, so the warranty gives piece of mind. There’re two kinds of car battery warranties: pro-rated and free replacement. With the pro-rated, you get a credit for a portion of the battery if it fails during the warranty period. With a free replacement warranty, you get just that, a free replacement. Be sure to ask us at Exclusive Motors about the warranty so you know what you’re getting.

Shocks and Struts For Placentia Bumps and Bounces

If you’re like most of us in Placentia, you want your car to handle well. That’s the job of your suspension system.

There are different types of suspension systems, but they all work on the same basic principles. First, there are the springs, which bear the weight of the car. The most common springs are coil or leaf – although we see air springs and torsion bars more often. The springs do most of the work.

Visit our Placentia location for an inspection of your suspension.
Exclusive Motors
1961 E Miraloma Ave # A
Placentia, California 92870
(714) 795-3065

But if all you had were springs, your vehicle would be bouncing around like a bobble head. That’s where the shocks come in. They control the rebound of the springs and smooth out the up and down motions. They also keep the tires on the road, and you in control. Some Mercedes – Lexuss use struts. Struts are a combination of shocks and springs, together in a more compact system.

Shocks wear out slowly over time, so it’s hard to notice when they get badly worn. One way to tell is to look for an uneven, cupping wear on your tires. If the shock or strut is leaking fluid, it needs to be replaced. If your car feels floaty in turns or if the front end dips a lot when you stop, it is time to get your shocks checked. Your owners’ manual will tell you when your shocks should be changed – it’s usually between 15,000 and 30,000 miles or 24,000 and 50,000 kilometers .

When you replace a shock, be sure to replace all four. Then your car will have an even suspension and will handle much better. Talk with your service advisor about how you drive. No, not your traffic violations, but how often you carry heavy loads, tow a trailer or drive in rough terrain. If you do a bunch of that, you’ll need a heavy duty shock.

Regular shocks use hydraulic fluid and air as their dampening system. Premium quality shocks and struts use compressed nitrogen gas instead of air. Gas shocks don’t get air bubbles that affect the performance of regular shocks. If you do a lot of high performance driving, off-roading or just want added comfort and control, think about getting premium gas shocks or struts.

Replacing your struts may take your car out of alignment, so be sure to get an alignment at the same time. So, to smooth out the bumps on the road of life, change your shocks and struts when they need it.

Technician Training at Exclusive Motors

Your car is important to you and keeping it running properly is vital to your Placentia lifestyle. That’s why you’re smart to have it serviced regularly at Exclusive Motors in Placentia. And even though it may just be routine maintenance, you want it done right by automotive professionals.

It’s also very important to your Placentia service center to keep you happy and on the road. You might be surprised at the amount of money our Placentia auto service center spends annually to make sure our Friendly techs are properly trained.

Exclusive Motors offers a variety of automotive services for many kinds of vehicles. We need to be current on the latest techniques and parts so that we can give you quality service. Our Placentia centers subscribe to data services that list the high quality parts and fluids recommended by your manufacturer.

And each service has a checklist of standard procedures. Exclusive Motors technicians follow these procedures so they can safely deliver a consistent level of high-quality service.

Some services at Exclusive Motors require the use of specialized equipment. Exclusive Motors technicians are trained extensively on this equipment so that they can service your car quickly and efficiently.

Classroom, video and hands-on training is provided by the company and outside trainers. It’s not only important that Friendly techs be able to perform a given task, they also need to be thoroughly trained in inspection and diagnostic techniques. One of the great services they perform is to detect potential problems before they become serious (and pricey).

The automotive service industry has standards for classifying and communicating problems to drivers. For example, it’s one thing to learn that your manufacturer recommends that you change your serpentine belt every 30,000 miles and another to learn that the belt is on the verge of failure. These standards help you understand the urgency of recommendations, letting you make better automotive service decisions.

California folks may be interested to know that service technicians are trained in compliance with federal and local Placentia laws and regulations, including environmental regulations regarding the disposal of used parts and fluids.

It’s the goal of Exclusive Motors to provide fast, courteous service. You should feel free to ask your technician or one of the managers about your service or for more information about their recommendations.

Well-trained service providers, established procedures, industry standards, and, of course, AutoNetTV, combine to give you the best service experience possible.

The Harm In Skipping An Oil Change For Placentia Drivers

People in Placentia have been hearing a lot about higher oil change intervals these days. Maybe you’re wondering: What are the key issues?

Some new vehicle manufacturers in Placentia are now recommending much higher oil change intervals than they have in the past. As much as 5,000 to 8,000 miles or more. This practice came under scrutiny when four of the largest new car manufacturers announced that owners like those in Placentia were experiencing engine damage resulting from these higher oil change intervals.

The manufacturers’ standard oil drain service for particular vehicles was scheduled at around 7,500 miles. People following these recommendations were experiencing engine damage. It turns out that oil sludge was building up. This caused small oil passages to clog and engine parts to fail.

What causes oil sludge? It’s a factor of time and mileage. There are hot spots in every engine that cause oil burn off that leads to sludge. Also, water from normal condensation can build up in the oil. This water also creates sludge. Severe driving conditions lead to more rapid sludge formation.

Visit Exclusive Motors in Placentia, California 92870

Severe driving around Placentia includes short trips under four miles or trips under ten miles in freezing conditions. The engine just doesn’t get warm enough for the water in the oil to evaporate.

Severe conditions are at the heart of the problem. Stop-and-go driving, towing, dusty conditions, heavy loads, very hot or very cold temperatures, a car top carrier – these are all conditions that would suggest that the severe service schedule should be considered.

The severe service schedule has much shorter oil change intervals. People in Placentia just need to honestly evaluate how they drive to determine if they should change their oil closer to the severe service schedule, or to the standard schedule.

Some types of Mercedes – Lexus will give oil change reminders. But it’s important to know how that reminder is determined. For some, the reminder simply comes when the standard mileage interval has rolled around. Others use a computer algorithm that takes into consideration the number of cold starts, trip length, engine temperature and so on. It’s programmed to approximate where on the standard/severe service spectrum you fall. Some more expensive vehicles actually have sensors that test the cleanliness and effectiveness of the oil.

For the rest of us, better safe than sorry should be the guiding principle. Talk with your Placentia service advisor at Exclusive Motors and work it out together. Find out what kind of oil the factory sends out in your vehicle. Sometimes it’s a premium grade that costs more than standard oil – but it may be what’s needed to meet a higher factory recommended interval.

If you’re realistically conservative, standard grades of oil will take care of you year after year. If you want to push the limits, ask for a premium grade oil to give you extra protection.

So, what happened with those manufacturers with the problems from higher oil change intervals? They ended up extending the engine warranty for parts that were affected by oil sludge. But they had a stipulation – they lowered the oil change interval and the vehicle owner had to provide proof of oil changes at the new lower interval to keep the extended warranty.