Hi-Line Autocare

Servicing Mercedes Benz car owners in Orange for over 25 years

Hi-Line Autocare - Servicing Mercedes Benz car owners in Orange for over 25 years

Hi-Line Autocare Often Asked About Premium vs. Regular Gas

Orange drivers often ask the question: “Will using premium gas make my car run better?” The answer is simple. But first, let’s talk about what exactly premium gasoline is.

Different grades of gasoline have different octane ratings. Regular gasoline has the lowest octane rating and premium the highest. Most gas stations around Orange, CA also carry a mid-grade that falls in between the two. The octane range for the different grades of gas varies by region due to altitude differences.

Engines require different octane ratings because of design differences. For example, turbocharged engines usually require premium gas.

There’s a sticker on your gas tank filler lid that tells you the minimum octane rating your vehicle manufacturer recommends.

For help identifying the type of gasoline your engine needs, come by Hi-Line Autocare in Orange:

134 Rancho Santiago
Orange, CA 92869
(714) 602-1896

Orange auto owners should read their owner’s manuals carefully to see if it’s acceptable to use lower grades. With some cars in Orange, CA it is; the engine control computer can adapt. Orange auto owners will lose some performance, but won’t do damage. With other engines, using a lower grade of fuel could result in serious and expensive damage; so you don’t want to save a couple of bucks at the pump only to pay it out a hundred fold at your Orange repair shop.

Your car will run best on the type of gas recommended by the manufacturer.

Today’s computer controlled vehicles are optimized to run well on the recommended grade of fuel. Using a higher grade than is recommended will not give Orange drivers any additional performance or better MPG.

Regulations require detergents for all grades of gasoline, so your engine will have the same protection, regardless of the grade of fuel you use. If you do hear some knocking or pinging from your engine, take it seriously and get your sedan into Hi-Line Autocare. It may be a sign that you need a tune-up or some other repair.

In times of pricey gas prices, most Orange car owners are conscious of making their fuel dollar go further as we drive around CA. Be sure to use the right gas for your car. Keep your tires properly inflated and your vehicle well maintained and you will get the best gas mileage possible.

Keep it Flowing With A Fuel Filter Replacement At Hi-Line Autocare

The function of the fuel filter is pretty self-explanatory. It filters your fuel. The fuel filter is in the fuel line somewhere in between the fuel tank and the engine. Both gas and diesel vehicles around Orange CA use fuel filters.

For more information about your fuel filter, visit Hi-Line Autocare or come by our shop located at 134 Rancho Santiago in Orange, CA 92869.
Please call (714) 602-1896 to make an appointment.

Generally speaking there’s not a lot of dirt in our Orange CA auto fuel supply, but there is enough that you want to screen it out. The problem actually gets worse the older your vehicle becomes. That’s because dirt, rust and other contaminants will settle out of the fuel and onto the bottom of the fuel tank. After your sedan is five years or older, it can actually have a fair amount of sediment built up.

That just means that the fuel filter has to work harder as your sedan ages. It’ll get clogged sooner and need to be replaced more often.

A symptom of a clogged fuel filter is that the engine sputters at highway speeds or under hard acceleration. That’s because enough fuel is getting through around town, but when you need more fuel for speed, enough just can’t get through the filter. Obviously, that could be dangerous if your car or truck can’t get enough power to get you out of harm’s way.

For just that reason, fuel filters have a bypass valve. When the filter is severely clogged, some fuel can bypass the filter all together. Of course that means that dirty, unfiltered fuel is getting through to be burned in the engine.

This dirt can then clog and damage your fuel injectors. Now injectors are not cheap to replace, so you don’t want to cause them damage just because you didn’t spend a few bucks to replace a fuel filter.

You know, in a way, the fuel filter can be the poster child for preventive maintenance. It’s a little part, it’s simple and it’s cheap to take care of. But if it’s neglected, it could lead to thousands of dollars of repair bills.

Those auto service schedules in your owner’s manual are there for a reason. If ever you don’t understand a recommended service, just ask your Orange service advisor at Hi-Line Autocare. We’ll be happy to explain.

Maintaining Your Diesel in Irvine

Diesel engines have been used extensively in Europe and Asia for many years. They haven’t been as common in Irvine because of the high sulfur content in our diesel fuel. But the government is now mandating lower sulfur content and, as a result, we are going to see more Orange auto owners driving diesel-fueled vehicles on the road, especially in passenger cars and SUV’s.

Diesels are popular in Orange because they get better gas mileage than gas-powered engines. They also last longer. Modern diesel engines are quiet and powerful. And if you associate diesel engines with black smoke, then you’re not up with the times. That smoke is a thing of the past.

Diesels don’t produce any more pollutants than gasoline engines. The pollution standards for diesel-powered vehicles are as strict in CA as for other vehicles.

Also, diesel engines can run on bio-diesel fuels as well as fossil fuels. Diesel fuel can be produced from vegetable oil or from cellulosic waste like wood chips and sawdust. In Irvine, we may soon see bio-diesel produced from algae. These fuel sources will lessen Orange auto owners’ dependence on fossil fuels and may even become truly renewable and sustainable.

Diesel-powered vehicles perform as well as other passenger vehicles, also. Most Santa Ana people don’t notice a difference in driving one or the other. If you haul heavy loads or tow a trailer in Aliso Viejo, however, the diesel is a definite improvement.

So, you may be asking, if diesels are so great, why don’t all Irvine drivers drive them? Surely there are disadvantages you haven’t told me about. That’s true. Diesel engines are heavier than gas engines, and they cost more in CA. The better fuel efficiency of the diesel engine is partially offset by the higher purchase price.

Because of higher fuel prices, diesel engines used to be more costly to drive in Irvine. But now, with higher volatility in the prices of both gasoline and diesel fuel in CA, that cost difference is less definitive. Whether a diesel or gas engine is more expensive for Orange auto owners depends now on the current price of fuel in CA and how many miles you drive.

Consider also that diesel-powered vehicles have a high resale value in the Irvine area, and the costs of owning and operating a diesel vs. a gas-powered vehicle in CA becomes a real toss-up.

Preventive auto maintenance for diesel vehicles has also become similar to that of gas-fueled vehicles in recent years. The major difference is that diesels require cleaner fuel, air and oil, so their filters are more expensive in Orange than those for gasoline engines. The engine air filter must be changed more frequently as well.

The costs for car care and repairs in Orange are similar. Wait, you may be thinking, but you just told me that filters are more pricey and have to be changed more regularly. True, but that is offset by the fact that diesel engines have a much longer lifetime than gasoline engines. So if you are the type of owner who prefers to hang on to a vehicle for a long time, you will be more than rewarded with a diesel engine.

So if you have been looking for Hi-Line Autocare auto advice on whether to switch to a diesel vehicle or stay with a gas-powered one, then we hope this helps. The answer as to which type of vehicle is better is that it depends on the Orange driver and their driving habits. Now that you know the facts, you can make an informed choice based on your own priorities and needs.

How Do You Save Gas In Orange CA?

No one in Orange, CA likes to spend a chunk of change at Irvine gas pumps. Rising CA fuel prices, however, have spurred Orange drivers to focus on how to improve their fuel efficiency. North Americans literally drive billions of miles less each month during times of high fuel prices. But we still need to drive (we are car-loving Americans, after all!), so it makes sense to try and increase our fuel economy however we can.

Let’s look at a real life example of one of our AutoNetTV producers. He has one of those really big SUVs. Lots of kids and horses to haul around, you know. His family was planning a four day camping trip. Here’s what he did to cut his fuel costs:

First, he installed a new, high flow engine air filter. Then he had his Orange service center change his oil, flush his cooling system and service his front and rear differentials along with the transfer case. He also had a fuel system cleaning, replaced his PCV valve and breather element. He also made sure his tires were up to the recommended pressure.

Now this cost several hundred dollars. But keep in mind, it all needed to be done anyway – it was all scheduled, and some of the work was overdue.

So he headed out, loaded with nine people and pulling a ton of trailer with everything needed for four days of camping. When the trip was over, he tallied his fuel economy.  Turns out, he got the best fuel economy on that vehicle up to that point. It had improved 25 percent! He saved $48.00 on that trip alone. And the savings keep on coming every day.

Here’s a quick summary of what you can do to save fuel in Orange, CA. First get caught up on your critical routine maintenance. Nearly every scheduled service item can boost fuel efficiency. If it’s time for a tune-up, git’er done at Hi-Line Autocare. That’s a big item.

If your check engine light is on, have your friendly Hi-Line Autocare service professional figure out why and fix it. Check engine problems can be real gas wasters.

Proper tire pressure and wheel alignment can really help Orange motorists as well. Try not to carry around a bunch of stuff. An extra hundred pounds can cost a mile per gallon.

Now you may not want to hear this, but the single biggest fuel waster for most Irvine folks is their right foot. Zooming away from stop lights and hot rod lane changes really waste fuel. Take it easy on CA expressways and Orange streets: don’t speed and plan ahead.

Finally, you may have noticed that we haven’t mentioned any magic pills or devices that will double your mileage. That’s because there aren’t any. Some may help a bit, but there are a lot of “miracle fuel saver” scams in CA. Don’t shell out any cash to swindlers, you need it to buy gas!

Do some research and check with your service professional at Hi-Line Autocare in Orange before spending your hard earned cash.

Fuel System Cleaning at Hi-Line Autocare in Orange for Better Performance

A fuel injector is a valve that delivers fuel to a vehicle’s engine. It has to deliver the precise amount of fuel, to precisely the right place, precisely when the engine needs it. The fuel also has to be mixed with air before it can burn in the engine.

Fuel injectors are engineered to spray fuel in a specific pattern into the engine. (The pattern varies by engine type and design.) In order to achieve these spray patterns, the fuel must be pressurized.

The pressure in a fuel injection system varies depending on its type. Many gasoline engines use port injection systems, which operate with a pressure of 60 pounds per square inch. Newer direct injection systems operate at 10 to 30 times that pressure. Some diesel passenger vehicles have fuel injectors that operate at 30,000 pounds or more per square inch.

Vehicles have one fuel injector for each cylinder in the engine. Your vehicle’s control computer constantly monitors the engine and various sensors in the vehicle and adjusts the fuel injectors accordingly so that they can deliver the proper amount of fuel to the engine. As you can see, fuel injectors are a sophisticated and vital part of your vehicle’s engine.

Because fuel injectors are such precision instruments, dirt and contaminants are a serious detriment to their performance. When an injector gets gummed up, it affects the pressure, pattern and timing of the fuel delivery. The result is a decrease in fuel efficiency and loss of engine performance.

So it’s vital to keep your fuel injectors clean. That starts with keeping the fuel in your tank clean. High-quality fuel contains detergents and additives that help clean your engine. Brand-name CA fuel companies also deliver a more consistent quality of fuel than do bargain stations in the Irvine area.

The second way to keep your injectors clean is to keep your fuel filter clean. This filter screens dirt and rust out of the fuel as it travels from the tank to the engine. If the filter clogs up, fuel will bypass it and carry its load of dirt into the engine.

Check your owner’s manual or Hi-Line Autocare in Orange to find out how often you should change your fuel filter. This should be part of your regular preventive maintenance. Also, remember that if you use bargain-brand or low-grade fuels, or if you drive an older vehicle, your filter will need to be changed more often.

You can also purchase cleaners that will protect your fuel injectors. These cleaners are added to the fuel tank. They work best at preventing build-up in your fuel injectors and can clean up small amounts of carbon, gum and varnish. But they won’t be able to clean a fully gummed-up injector. Read the labels before using any of these products for full directions on their use.

If your fuel injectors are gummed up, you can get a professional deep cleaning service at Hi-Line Autocare in Orange that will result in better fuel efficiency and improved vehicle performance.

Good car care will prevent serious damage to your fuel injector system. And this is one system that you want to keep in perfect condition.

Fuel Injection: It Keeps Getting Better for Orange Drivers

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Orange car owners know that engines need to burn fuel to operate. Fuel is pumped from your fuel tank to your sedan engine where it is squirted—or injected—into your engine’s cylinders. This is the function of the fuel injectors.

There are two ways to inject fuel into an engine. Fuel needs air to burn, so in the first method, fuel is injected into a port and allowed to mix with air and before it is drawn into the cylinders. In the second method, fuel is injected directly into the cylinders and mixes with air after it enters the sedan engine.

Direct injection engines burn fuel more efficiently than conventional sedan engines. Some models can deliver the power of a V8 with the economy of a V6.

For example, in one family of engines, the conventional version (a V6) delivers about 250 horsepower. The direct injection version delivers over 300 horsepower and gets about the same gas mileage. The turbocharged version delivers 350 horsepower.

Fuel Injection: It Keeps Getting Better for Orange DriversWhy the big difference in power? Direct injection systems allow fuel to be squirted into the sedan engine at hundreds of times the pressure of a conventional engine. This atomizes the fuel better (breaks it down into tinier droplets), which means more of it gets burned, which translates to more power for your engine. It also results in cleaner emissions.

Fuel injectors are precision instruments. They have to deliver the right amount of fuel at exactly the time the sedan engine needs it. They are also engineered to inject fuel with a specific spray pattern. This spray pattern allows for maximum fuel efficiency and proper atomization. Direct injection engines require a much higher degree of precision than conventional engines. For this reason, they are equipped with more sophisticated computers.

When fuel injectors get dirty, their precision drops off. The spray pattern won’t be precise, and the timing of fuel delivery may be off. This decreases fuel efficiency and gas mileage as well as delivering less power to the engine.

Orange auto owners should understand that fuel injectors are not cheap to replace. Direct injection fuel injectors are even more costly. And we’re talking a mortgage payment to buy a set of new fuel injectors for a diesel engine.

So keeping your fuel injectors clean is just good auto advice. The best way to do this is to change your air and fuel filters regularly and practice other habits of good car care and preventive maintenance. Cleaning additives in your fuel can also help.

If you do end up with gum or varnish in your fuel system, you’ll need a professional fuel system cleaning. This will clean out your whole system, including the injectors. The good news is that with proper maintenance, Orange auto owners will enjoy better fuel efficiency and their fuel injectors will last for a long time.

Service to Improve Fuel Economy


The price of gas in CA has got Orange drivers talking. It seems that Orange folks who need a bigger vehicle to carry family and gear, or provide four wheel drive, are hit especially. That is why we thought it would be good to review some things that anyone can do to improve fuel efficiency.

First let’s start with how we drive in the Irvine area. Orange auto owners may not realize that they can really save cash on gas by just changing a few driving habits. One of the biggest is jackrabbit starts – you know, flooring the gas as soon as the light turns green. That really wastes a lot of fuel. Building up your speed at a slower pace uses less fuel and is easier on your engine and drive train. And don’t drive with one foot on the brake. That’s also a drag on fuel economy, and it wears out your brakes faster too.

Another thing Orange drivers can do is drive slower – but only when it’s safe. Sometimes on the freeway we drive an extra five … ten . . . twenty … over the speed limit. We do it to save time, but it only saves a few minutes out of maybe an hour long drive, and we may use 10 to 15 % more gas. Just leave Orange a little bit earlier, save some money and arrive more relaxed.

Orange drivers can also try and combine all of their errands for the day into just one trip, rather than several. If you can put off a trip today that can be combined with one tomorrow – you can save some time and cash.

Using your cruise control can save bucks too. Driving in Irvine at a constant speed really improves fuel efficiency. Be sure to only use your cruise control in CA under safe conditions – you can look in your owner’s manual for some key good tips on using your cruise control.

Did you know that reducing the weight in your sedan saves gas? Clean out the trunk or back seat from time to time so that you are not paying to carry around a lot of stuff around Irvine you do not need in the car. If you live in CA where there is snow and ice, clear it off your car. They add weight and mess with aerodynamics too.

Another tip is to avoid long idle times, which includes warming it up when you start. Modern engines do not require a long warm up to get going – just take it easy for a couple of miles.

Be sure to get a new gas cap if yours leaks or is worn.

Now, let’s start talking mechanical. Bottom line – the better you maintain your vehicle, the less fuel you will use. It all adds up in a big way. For example, replacing your dirty engine air filter will pay for itself in improved gas mileage before your next oil change – and will keep saving you income after that.

A clean, well-maintained fuel system really pays big dividends in fuel economy for Orange car owners. A clogged fuel filter wastes gas. So does a dirty fuel system, grimy fuel injectors and plugged up PCV valves. A fuel system service decreases the gas you use, and increases the power – so Orange motorists can’t go wrong with that.

Some of us Orange drivers ignore our Check Engine light. But fixing the problem that caused the light to come on will usually save some fuel as well. It may be a bad oxygen sensor that can really rob your fuel economy.

And, it may be time for a tune-up. Tune-ups should improve your fuel economy. Don’t overlook the important routine maintenance items, like scheduled oil changes, transmission and cooling system service. Dirty or low fluids actually use more fuel. Just look at your auto manufacturer’a recommended service intervals in the owner’s manual, or ask your Hi-Line Autocare service advisor for the schedule.

Don’t forget your tires. Under-inflated tires waste gas. And if your wheels are out of alignment you won’t get the fuel efficiency you need.

None of these things are very complicated or expensive for Orange car owners to stay on top of. When you maintain your car properly, you save gas today, and prevent pricey repairs tomorrow.

Diesel Maintenance For CA

At Hi-Line Autocare we hear from a lot of people who are excited about the new diesel engines that will soon be available in passenger cars and SUV’s. But our CA friends are often curious about the preventive maintenance requirements. People may not know that diesel engines have long been used extensively in Europe and Asia. In fact, in some markets, there’re nearly as many diesel powered passenger cars as there are gasoline.

Here’s who’s announced or is expected to announce new diesels for North America: BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Volkswagen, Nissan, Honda, Toyota, Hyundai and Subaru. Of course, the US auto makers will be expanding their diesel offerings as well. Diesels will become a very big deal here in CA.

You may ask, why has it taken so long getting to CA and North America? There are a bunch of reasons like fuel tax policies and such, but the biggest hurtle was that CA diesel fuel had a high sulfur content – too high for the latest generation of highly refined diesel engines. Recent government mandates to remove sulfur now opens up CA to the engines the rest of the world’s been enjoying for a long time.

Why are diesels so popular worldwide? Well, for starters, diesels get up to 30% better fuel economy than gas engines. And they last a lot longer. And modern diesel engines are refined, quiet and powerful – and there’s none of that black smoke we used to see.

Some people may think that diesels create more pollution. But, you need to rethink diesels. Environmental pollution standards for diesel cars and light trucks are scheduled to be as strict as they are for gasoline vehicles. A modern diesel engine is as clean as a gas engine.

You may also have heard a lot in the news about bio-diesel. The exciting thing about diesels is that they’re not limited to fossil fuels. They can run on fuel made from vegetable oil. There are refineries that make diesel fuel from cellulosic waste like woodchips from lumber mills. There’s even this cool new process where a special strain of algae is used to convert carbon dioxide, water and sunshine into bio-diesel. That’s still a ways off, but you can see that diesel can become a sustainable source of fuel.

And, there are not a lot of trade off’s with diesel in terms of performance. A modern passenger car diesel is very smooth, quiet and quick. Most folks wouldn’t notice any difference. For those who tow trailers and haul heavy loads, diesels will be an improvement.

Now diesel engines are heavy duty, so they cost more than gas engines. But they get better fuel economy – so the break-even point is largely dependent on the difference between CA gas and diesel prices at the pump and how many miles you drive. And diesels have a higher resale value.

Now, let’s get back to diesel maintenance. You have to keep in mind that most of the new diesels are just coming in, or will be over the next couple of years, so we don’t have the maintenance schedules to make direct comparisons yet.

But going off what we already have in CA, we can expect fluid drain intervals to be similar to gasoline engines. Diesels do require very clean fuel, air and oil, so their filters are much higher capacity than gasoline filters and cost more. The engine air filter needs to be changed more frequently as well.

Repair costs are similar. As with gasoline engines, proper maintenance is the key to long engine life and to avoiding repairs. So pretty much what we have come to expect with gas vehicles; coolant system service, transmission service, power brakes, power steering, differential, filters, fuel system, and so on. And the payoff for you, if you’re the kind that likes to keep your vehicles for a long time, is that a properly maintained diesel engine can last for hundreds of thousands of miles.

Clean Fuel Makes a Happy Engine In Orange, CA

 




If the fuel system in your sedan is dirty, you will be hurting your fuel efficiency and losing performance as you drive around Orange, CA.

Unless they drive a vintage car, Orange car owners have fuel injectors which need to be properly maintained. That is why your sedan owner’s manual has a schedule for cleaning your fuel injectors and other parts of your fuel system.

Your friendly service advisor at Hi-Line Autocare in Orange has the tools and chemicals to do the job right. Hi-Line Autocare uses a process that gives your car a deep, professional fuel system cleaning. The particles, gum and varnish that build up in your fuel system are removed so that it can run cleanly and efficiently.

After a professional fuel system cleaning at Hi-Line Autocare, you’ll notice more power, improved fuel economy and reduced exhaust emissions. AutoNetTV strongly recommends you follow your car makers fuel system cleaning service recommendations to keep your sedan running strong.

Orange car owners don’t need the added expense of replacing a fuel injector that’s been damaged by neglect. Check with your friendly Hi-Line Autocare service advisor and see when your car is scheduled for a key fuel system cleaning.

Clean Fuel

Fuel filters clean the dirt, dust and debris out of your fuel. Both gasoline and diesel-powered engines have them. The fuel filter is located in the fuel line between the fuel tank and the sedan engine.

Orange motorists don’t need to filter their fuel because it has lots of grit in it; they need to filter it because it has some grit it in. Any dirt is bad for your engine. The cleaner the fuel, the better your sedan engine will run.

Over time, the small amounts of rust, dirt and contaminants in your fuel settle out inside the fuel tank. After about five years, this can amount to a quite a bit of sediment. This means that as your sedan ages, your fuel filter has to work harder to screen your fuel: more sediment in your tank means more potential for grit in your fuel.

Clean Fuel – Clean Performance for Orange DriversThe harder your fuel filter works, the more often it needs to be replaced. Check with your owner’s manual to find out how often it should be serviced and how long you can expect it to last. Orange car owners should change it before it becomes clogged. Your friendly Hi-Line Autocare technician can help you with recommended fuel filter replacement schedules.

If your fuel filter becomes clogged, your sedan engine will sputter when you drive at highway speeds or when you accelerate rapidly. A clogged filter allows enough fuel to run the car at low speeds around town in Orange, but when you need a higher flow of fuel for faster speeds, or if you need a sudden burst of fuel, you just won’t be able to get it through the filter.

Orange car owners take note: A clogged filter is actually dangerous. If you need to accelerate suddenly out of the path of danger, you just won’t have the power to do it.

Fuel filters have a bypass valve. When the filter becomes clogged, the valve allows some fuel to bypass the filter so the engine can keep running – just not enough to be running well.

That means, though, that dirty, unfiltered fuel is entering your engine. Instead of clogging up your filter, that dirt is now getting into your fuel injectors where it can cause serious damage. Fuel injectors are expensive; fuel filters are cheap. It doesn’t seem like a difficult choice.

Fuel filters are the epitome of preventive maintenance. They are cheap and easy to change, but neglecting them can lead to expensive repair bills for Orange auto owners. Some fuel filters are inside the fuel tank and cannot be routinely serviced – your friendly Hi-Line Autocare technician will be able to tell you if this applies to your vehicle.

Good car care means following recommended schedules for preventive maintenance, including changing your fuel filters. Take the auto advice offered in every owner’s manual and have your vehicle regularly inspected at Hi-Line Autocare. It may save Orange drivers money by preventing costly repairs, but it will also repay them in improved fuel efficiency, safety and peace of mind.