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Auto Care Tips

Auto Repair Tips

How often should I have my vehicle’s OIL CHANGED?

We recommend you change the oil and the oil filter in a vehicle every 3 - 5 months or 3,000 - 5,000 miles, depending upon your driving habits. When you have your oil changed at Five Star, we do an inspection of your other systems to be sure they are in good working order. We’ll alert you to any problems we find and let you know if they need to be fixed right away, or if you just need to keep an eye on them.

How often should I have my TRANSMISSION SERVICED?

Most manufacturers recommend transmission service every 2 years or 30,000 miles.

Replacing an AIR FILTER can improve gas mileage

Replacing a clogged air filter can improve your car’s gas mileage by as much as 10%! We recommend having your air filter checked every time you have an oil change. At Five Star Auto Center, we not only perform a visual inspection, we also use an air gun to see how resticted the air flow is, which allows us to determine if it's time for a new filter or if you can wait awhile.

RIGHT TIRE PRESSURE = Better Gas Mileage

Maintaining proper tire inflation pressure can reduce tire wear and increase gas mileage.

Check your GAS CAP

Be sure your gas cap is on tightly and in good working order. About 17% of the vehicles on the road have gas caps that are either damaged, loose or missing, causing 147 million gallons of gas to vaporize every year. In some vehicles a loose gas cap can cause the Check Engine light to turn on.

COOLING SYSTEM can cause breakdowns in any weather

Cooling systems can cause problems in all seasons, not just hot weather. Cooling system failure is the #1 cause of mechanical breakdowns on American highways according to the US Department of Transportation. When you have your oil changed at Five Star, we always do an inspection of your other systems to be sure they are in good working order. We’ll alert you to any problems we find and let you know if they need to be fixed right away, or if you just need to keep an eye on them.

Does COOLANT COLOR matter?

Automobile manufacturers replaced the old green coolant of ten years ago with formula-specific coolant for your make of vehicle. Manufacturer’s claim that using any other coolant besides the coolant designed for their vehicle will compromise the corrosion protection. Read entire article.

Why isn't my AIR CONDITIONING cooling like it used to?

It could be as simple as you need more Freon. Being just a few ounces low on Freon could cause your air conditioning system not to cool properly.

Is REGULAR MAINTENANCE really important?

Many people neglect having regular service or those pesky warning lights, which can lead to accidents or unexpected, and often expensive, repairs. Scheduled maintenance, such as a routine oil change or manufacturer’s recommended service, can uncover issues before they escalate. What might be a very minor problem now can quickly grow into a very expensive and time consuming one if not attended to promptly by a skilled mechanic. Learn more about regular maintenance.

Checking BRAKES frequently saves money and lives

When it comes to vehicle safety, the brakes top the list of systems that need to be routinely inspected and repaired immediately should motorists suspect any problems. According to the Car Care Council, a properly operating brake system helps to ensure safe vehicle operation and control under a variety of conditions. However, many people are unaware of the signs and symptoms that their brake system may need maintenance or repair. Learn more about symptoms or brake wear.

When BRAKES talk, drivers should listen

When it comes to driving safely, it’s easy to take your vehicle’s ability to stop for granted – until you really need it. Your brakes often reveal possibly serious situations when they make noise. Smooth, quiet braking is determined in large part by the proper fit and compatibility of the brake caliper, pad and rotor. Having an ASE certified technician install premium parts may cost a bit more up front, but they help provide noise- and vibration-free operation and longer pad life on today’s cars and trucks. Learn more about what your brakes are saying.

Myth: Only New Car Dealers Can Do Warranty Service

It’s a common misconception that only car dealers can perform maintenance services on a newer vehicle that is under warranty. By law, consumers can have maintenance services done by a local independent service shop without affecting the vehicle’s warranty, even though dealers and manufacturers often suggest otherwise. Learn more about your vehicle warranty service rights.

How do I know if my BELTS need to be REPLACED?

There are two types of belts on your vehicle. One is a set of serpentine belts that take care of your power steering, alternator, air conditioning, compressor and fan. If the serpentine belt breaks, your vehicle could overheat, causing other problems. The serpentine belt should be inspected with every service and replaced when necessary. Learn more about replacing belts.


The catalytic convertor reduces the emissions (exhaust) pollutants to help keep the contaniments out of our air and improve air quality. The converter cleans the pollutants that come out of tailpipes, reducing hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide to acceptable levels. Learn more about catalytic converters.

A CLICKING NOISE can be more than just annoying

Clicking noises are not only annoying, they can be serious and should be acted upon immediately. Learn more about clicking noises.


The end of Daylight Savings Time happens in most parts of the United States in early Novmeber and creates unfamiliar driving conditions that can be hazardous without proper vehicle lighting. The Car Care Council recommends vehicle lights be checked before the clocks “fall back” to help ensure safe driving, especially during dusk and peak evening traffic hours. More about vehicle lights.

DRIVING IN WINTER Takes Preparation

Walking in a winter wonderland is a beautiful sight but safely driving through the glistening snow can rattle your nerves if you and your car aren’t prepared for winter. Be sure to have your vehicle winterized before harsh weather arrives and especially before embarking on road trips for the winter holidays. Learn the steps to take to get your vehicle ready for winter driving.

Car Wash Tips

Does it really matter what TYPE OF CAR WASH I use?

There are three major types of car washes – friction, touchless, and hand.

A friction wash uses many pieces of machinery to apply “friction” to the vehicle’s surface to clean it. This method is pretty quick and requires fewer employees so the wash is cheap. But a friction wash can’t get into all the small areas that are not in direct contact with the machinery used to apply pressure and brushes to the vehicle. It’s also harsher on your vehicle and has been known to break off mirrors, antennas, and rear window wipers.

The touchless wash is a series of high-pressure nozzles that apply chemicals to “lift” the dirt off your vehicle’s finish. In order to remove dirt without actually touching your car, the chemicals must be strong and are hard on your car’s finish. Washing your car without touching it is basically like running your garden hose over the vehicle: it looks clean until it dries. It’s really impossible to get a clean vehicle without touching it.

A hand wash is just that: done by human hands. This process allows our employees to thoroughly clean your vehicle, including all hard to reach areas. At Five Star Auto Center, only gentle hands covered with soft mitts actually touch your vehicle, and we use only certified “green” chemicals that are safe for you and your car. It takes a bit longer, but you end up with an exceptionally clean, undamaged car.

Professional Wash SAVES MONEY

You can save money and the environment by using a professional car wash. The average professional car wash uses just 30 gallons of water, versus 150 gallons of water on average when washing your car at home. If you only wash your car once a week, that's an annual savings of 6,240 gallons per car.

Isn’t RAIN a natural, cost effective car wash?

No! Rain and snow contain dirt and pollutants from the air, sometimes referred to as acid rain, and it can eat away at the finish on your car.  After the rain evaporates your car’s finish is left with a film of acid.  Concentrated by the sun, this acid can become so strong that it will ruin your vehicle’s paint and appearance.  Considering you can spend $5,000 - $10,000.00 on a quality paint job, a simple weekly car wash can really save a great deal of money. Stop by and let our quality team hand wash your vehicle today.

Driving a clean car makes you feel good keeping it clean assures that it stays in good shape and retains maximum value.

My car's PAINT finish FEELS really ROUGH

What you’re feeling are the contaminates that adhere to a vehicle's finish. These could be from pollen, animal droppings, street tar, bug remains or even tree sap. If left unattended these contaminates will eat through your clear coat and could ultimately damage your car's finish. Once the clear coat has been damaged, the paint can become oxidized and will get very dull over time, really diminishing the re-sale value of the vehicle. We recommend you wash your vehicle at least twice a month to help keep contaminates from damaging your vehicle’s finish.

Fall is a great time of year to get all those contaminates off and get the finish ready for the harshness of winter. Five Star Auto Center’s Detail specialists can inspect your vehicle and suggest the appropriate cleaning and/or waxing to bring the finish back to its factory-smooth shine.

I just had an "Express Wax" performed at another wash and it seems that it is causing some discoloration, what can I do?

The issue is the quality of the material utilized to "wax" or polish your vehicle. The "Express" term usually means the wax is a liquid that is sprayed on and just wiped off. It does shine temporarily but in some cases it causes a discoloration of rubber molding around your glass and sometimes it discolors the clear coat on your paint. This can be corrected with a complete detailing of the vehicle finish and should not cause permanent damage. In the future we suggest you let our experienced detail experts do the waxing by hand with a good quality brand of wax. We use only eco friendly waxes and polishes to protect and shine your vehicles’ finish. This is the only way to protect the finish and provide a lasting shine.


Going GREEN can help save the environment and your pocket book

Someday all of us may be driving pollution-free, hydrogen-powered cars. But what’s a concerned consumer to do in the meantime?

You don’t have to wait to help the environment. By simply changing a few habits, you can begin helping the environment right away. Regular vehicle maintenance and better driving habits are two easy-to-implement strategies for helping the environment. What’s more, better automotive habits will help your vehicle last longer and command a better resale price. Learn more about Green practices.


Most cars, trucks, vans or SUVs. Competitors’ coupons must be for the same services and from companies in Roseville, Rocklin, Lincoln, Loomis, Sacramento, Auburn or other Placer County or Sacramento County. Special offers and coupons cannot be combined with any other offers. Shuttle area limited to a 10-mile radius of Rocklin and is on a first-come, first-served, staff and vehicle available basis. Adults traveling with children must provide their own car seats. See store for more information.