Tag Archives: Laguna Beach

Why Is Important To Winterize Your Vehicle?

Even though Southern California certainly does not experience winter like other parts of the country, it’s still a good idea to do some general winterizing for your vehicle during this time of year. It will help keep you safely driving down the I-5 and will also prepare you for those trips up to the mountains for some skiing or merely getting away this holiday season. Check your battery: colder temps can put a strain on your battery, and you sure don’t want to find out the hard way that this was the time you should have purchased a new one. Replace wiper blades and fill wiper fluids: it’s a good idea not just to use water in the colder months because that could easily freeze in your lines. And imagine driving in either a rain or snow storm with wiper blades that don’t wipe!! GAH! This is the time to change those blades! Inspect your tires and make sure you have chains if you are heading up to the mountains. There are places along the way to Tahoe or Big Bear ... read more

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Family-Friendly Road Trip Games

This is the time of year for family road trips. More people are out on the roads than any other time of year, as much as 25% more! Be prepared for delays and traffic. There’s nothing worse than a long road trip with nothing to do. Aside from all the safety tips for traveling, it’s almost as important to have your road-trip-games at the ready. Sanity is just as important as safety on any travel expedition. Here are a number of fun games to get you started: During the holiday season is a good time for this one… calling out ‘decorations’ as each passenger sees a holiday-decorated house or vehicle. Keep track of who says it first the most number of times and at the end of your trip, that’s your winner. Who can correctly identify the make of a vehicle around you? This is a great game if there are multiple car lovers along for the ride. If you’re really good, you can up it to the next level to see who can identify the correct models too! I spy w ... read more

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What Are the Top Five Questions You Should Ask Your Auto Mechanic?

It takes a lot of trusts to drop our beloved vehicle off to an auto repair shop, especially one we know little about. Finding a good auto mechanic who does a great job AND one we feel has integrity can take a while to see in a new city. Just like finding the right doctor or dentist, we want to make sure they know what they’re doing, and we want to feel welcome when we walk through the front door. To help you find that right-fit auto mechanic and shop, we’ve compiled a list of what we think are the top 5 questions you want to ask your auto mechanic before starting your new relationship. These aren’t in any particular order because we believe they are ALL important! Do you charge for diagnostics and if so, how much? This is an important question to ask since times have changed. Our vehicles are much less mechanical and far more technical than ever. We own a computer on wheels. Because of this, it requires a lot of the right kind of diagnostic computers and tools. These ... read more

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Japanese Automotive Specialist vs. General Auto Repair Shop: What's the Difference?

When you are looking for expert car repair services for your Japanese automobile, it can be a tough thing trying to find a shop you can trust as well as one that is fully equipped with auto mechanics who have the right kind of training and tools. Not all shops are created equal, and as you probably already know, that’s an understatement.  When you want the best in service for your Japanese automobile, whether it’s a Honda, Acura, Lexus, or one of the other many makes, it can take some serious sleuthing. Even if you do find an auto repair shop that specializes in Japanese vehicles, you’ll still want to make sure that their auto mechanics have the experience and training, as well as the right tools, that will allow them to do great work for you. They can say they specialize in any make, but unless they have all the right components, it doesn’t mean that they can deliver.  When you go with a general auto repair shop, it can often be risky unless they tr ... read more

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What Happens When The Alternator Dies?

The bottom line is that when your alternator dies, your car dies. Well, not forever, but you certainly can’t get to where you need to be at the moment. The good news is that usually, you have some warning signs show up before you are completely stuck and broken down. Larry’s Independent Service wants to help you at least avoid a costly tow or worse damage, so we’ve compiled a list of the significant warning signs to get you out ahead of a potentially dangerous day.  Your alternator is responsible for supplying your vehicle’s electrical power. When it stops, then your battery no longer can recharge. When your battery isn’t working right, then there’s not enough power to charge the spark plugs, and that’s all folks, you’re not going anywhere. Even if you can get your car started again with a jump, you probably won’t get very far.  Warning signs: A warning light on your dash. ALT or GEN are the common ones and when this li ... read more

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Which is Cheaper? Maintaining Your Current Vehicle or Buying a New Car?

It can be a tough decision when trying to figure out whether the smart move is to keep your old car and invest in having repairs done or whether it is time to invest in a new car. When you see all the latest technology that comes out every year, and especially what’s new in keeping you and your family safe, it can be hard to remain happy with what is already in your garage. One of the first things to consider is the impact either decision will have on your finances.   Keep in mind that buying new isn’t always going to be what will cost you the most. Sometimes repairs are so extensive that it’s just not worth putting the money into fixing your vehicle. Something else, though, that can have a direct impact on the financial side of your decision is to compare how much you are spending on gas in your current vehicle vs. what you will spend on the new car you’re out test driving. You might be shocked to find that the money you spend on gas every month could be ... read more

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Top Ten Road Trip Ideas Around Mission Viejo, CA

Californians love our cars and as much as we detest traffic, we love the open road. Whether you simply want to jump in the car and go or you want to plan out something more involved, we have compiled 10 of the best road trips around. Mission Viejo is a great starting point whether you’re just heading down to San Juan Capistrano to see the swallows returning or all the way up the 101 to go wine tasting and other cool places along the way and then some. 1. San Diego 75 miles approx. 1 hour 15 minutes: What’s not to love about San Diego? Beaches and waterfronts, the Gaslamp Quarter, farmers markets galore. There is so much to see and do in San Diego alone, a month might not be enough time, but since it’s so close to Mission Viejo, this is one road trip we suggest you often take. 2. San Juan Capistrano 8.5 miles approx. 12 minutes: San Juan Capistrano might be close to Mission Viejo, but it boasts one of the most beautiful of the 21 Spanish Missions that dot the Calif ... read more

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Why Are Pre-Purchase Inspections Important?

We’ve all been there - that purr-fect automobile calling out to you like a siren to sailors. Wooing you with her shiny paint job, low mileage, and fantastic sound system; beckoning you to scoop her up and park her in your garage. But let’s face it, when she starts sputtering a few weeks down the road and you wake up to the fact that your shiny new vehicle has some bugs under the hood, nothing is more disappointing and heartbreaking.     Before you sign on the dotted line, bring that beautiful used automobile into Larry’s Independent Service in Mission Viejo. Our ASE-Certified auto mechanics specialize in Asian and American automobiles. We are more than familiar with all makes and models of Honda, Toyota, Lexus, Acura, Nissan, Infiniti, Subaru, Mitsubishi, and Mazda. We also service and repair US makes including Ford, GM, and Chrysler, and we also repair and service Hybrids and Diesels. Through our commitment to continued education, our team of ASE-Certifi ... read more

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What’s the Difference Between Major and Minor Service?

What’s the Difference Between Major and Minor Service?

  At Larry’s Independent Service, we can handle almost every major and minor issue that your car faces in its lifetime. Usually, minor services are done at 7,500, 15,000, 45,000 and 75,000 miles and major services should be tackled at 30,000, 60,000 and 90,000-mile intervals.   To simplify it, here are services that are considered major and minor:   Minor Service:   Inspecting tire pressure, tire mounting and balancing Checking all lubricant levels Inspecting fan belts Checking all filter condition Testing light operations Tube and hose repairs   Major Service:   Inspecting suspension Checking gearbox condition Emissions repair Engine repairs Oil changing and tune-ups Inspect exhaust system Inspecting steering components Brake system repair   Most vehicles built today have complex diagnosis systems that are always monitoring the automobile and its systems for issues. Many of these vehicles have warning lights and messages ... read more

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What Does ASE-Certification Mean?

What Does ASE-Certification Mean?

  Your automobile is a huge investment and needs to be inspected and maintained by with the best auto repair specialists available. You can expect that high-quality service from  ASE-Certified mechanics. It's an acronym for Automotive Service Excellence and this organization gives certification to auto mechanics who are experts in the auto repair industry. First, the mechanics must have a minimum of two years before they need to take tests that cover a variety of areas in the field. These include:   Suspension and brakes Electrical systems Heating and air-conditioning Engine repair Automatic transmissions Engine performance Axles Manual drivetrains   Certification is not permanent. ASE-Certified auto mechanics have to take these tests every five years as the advancements in automotive technology and equipment is always changing in the industry. As a car owner, you'll want to have a knowledgeable ASE-Certified auto mechanic who is trained in the mo ... read more

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