The Toy Shop

Serving Toyota, Lexus, and Scion owners in Cypress, Buena Park, La Palma, and all of Orange County

The Toy Shop - Serving Toyota, Lexus, and Scion owners in Cypress, Buena Park, La Palma, and all of Orange County

Fall and Spring Checkup In Cypress

When I was a kid in Cypress, my dad always made sure he took the cars in for Spring and Fall checkups. I was telling a friend that it’s about time to get into The Toy Shop for my checkup and he said that he read on the internet that modern cars don’t need seasonal service.

My friend is (technically) right about some things, but from a practical standpoint, a seasonal check up still makes sense.

Back when my dad was teaching me about how to take care of the family truck, most cars used a different weight of oil in the winter and in the summer. But most of today’s modern engines run the same oil year round. High-tech engines and high-tech motor oils are better able to handle the seasonal changes.

Your owner’s manual or Cypress service advisor at The Toy Shop can tell you the right oil to use.

Of course, you’re concerned about the coolant or antifreeze. You don’t want to overheat in the CA summer or freeze up in the winter. Your engine cooling system protects against both of these things. And modern coolant, or as it’s sometimes called; ‘antifreeze’, is up to doing both very well. It’s designed to last for more miles than most people drive in a year or two.

So how does a Spring and Fall check-up fit in? Let’s start with Spring. Summer is coming. That means heat, more miles driven and road trips. It just makes sense to check your fluid levels and do a visual inspection to see that everything is up to snuff.

You may not be scheduled to drain and replace the coolant for some time, but you need to make sure you have enough coolant, and that you don’t have any leaks or hoses that are about to fail.

That’s pretty practical; a check-up to see if there are any problems or emerging conditions that could later become a problem, like a cracked belt.

And the same principle applies for getting ready for winter. Cold weather means lots of failed batteries. It takes more power to crank up a cold engine, and cold also decreases the available cranking power the battery has available.

So a battery test in the Fall could tell you if you’ve got a battery that is running on its last legs. And of course, if you live where winter temperatures get below 45 degrees or you have ice and snow, you’ll want to consider changing to winter tires.

So Spring and Fall auto checkups at The Toy Shop are practical reminders to get ready for the demands of the hot and cold seasons to come.

And odds are that you have one or more routine services that are due anyway. Like a transmission service, brake or power steering fluid, differential service – stuff like that. Are your wiper blades still good? Are your headlamps starting to dim?

So Spring and Fall: change your clocks, replace the batteries in your smoke detectors – and get a check-up for your cars.

See, dad was right again.

Come and see us at The Toy Shop for your Spring and Fall automotive checkup.
The Toy Shop
5051 Lincoln Ave.
Cypress, CA 90630
714.826.1171

Battery Replacement At The Toy Shop In Cypress

Hello, welcome to The Toy Shop. Today’s focus is batteries. It seems like everything in Cypress runs on batteries. Of course, the batteries we’re most concerned with here at The Toy Shop 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 Cypress 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 The Toy Shop This can be thought of as the power output used to start a cold truck engine. The number of cold cranking amps you need depends on your vehicle and where you live in CA, specifically how cold it is. (Many CA drivers have first-hand experience trying to start their car on a cold winter morning.) The two factors are that the colder your truck’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 The Toy Shop, we consult the table shown below. Let’s say it’s eighty degrees Fahrenheit in Cypress. 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 CA, 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 truck was based on averages. At The Toy Shop, we like to remind Cypress motorists 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 trucks 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 Cypress drivers these days because of parasitic drain. Parasitic drain is the battery energy that’s used when the key is off in your truck. 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 Cypress. 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 The Toy Shop and upgrade if you need more.

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

Batteries are a big ticket item for most CA drivers, 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 The Toy Shop about the warranty so you know what you’re getting.

I Can See Clearly Now: Wiper Blade Replacement In Cypress

About 90% of our driving decisions in Downey are based solely on what we see. So having a good pair of windshield wipers is extremely important.

Most Downey motorists have experienced the frustration and fear of not being able to see clearly during a storm, or when our truck windshield is just dirty. In fact, it’s estimated that 46,000,000 auto owners across the nation are driving with wipers that can’t adequately clear their windshield in a storm.

It seems like your wiper blades are always at their worst when you need them the most. If that sounds like you, you’ve got plenty of company in the Downey area. 78% of car owners only change their wiper blades after the blades function so poorly that they become a safety hazard.

Us Cypress drivers need to change our thinking. Instead of blades being something to replace when they fail, we need to consider wiper blades as an important truck safety component. Then we’ll stay ahead of the storm.

You really ought to replace your wiper blades twice a year; in the spring and the fall. If you live in the colder parts of CA, you may even want to get special winter blades in the fall.

Winter blades are made to resist freezing. Speaking of winter and freezing Downey conditions, if your truck has been sitting for a long time and the windshield becomes frozen, don’t use your wipers to clear off snow and ice. That can shred your blades and may even damage the wiper motor.

Your wiper blades live outside in the freezing cold and blistering Cypress sun. Over time, they become hard and brittle, and then tear. They also lose their flexibility and just don’t clear the truck windshield effectively. Worn wiper blades aren’t just a safety hazard; they can also scratch your windshield. That may require replacing the entire truck windshield – that’s a significant consequence for neglecting such a small part.

AutoNetTV and The Toy Shop recommend you replace worn blades right away. Your Cypress service center can provide you with a quality replacement blade. At The Toy Shop, they cost about the same as they would at the store – but installation is included.

Of course you also need washer fluid to help your blades do their work. Even though The Toy Shop will top off the washer fluid with a full service oil change, it is a good idea to have some extra fluid at home. Bring it with you if you’re heading out on a road trip.

Always use windshield washer fluid. Plain water, even that fancy French bottled water, just doesn’t cut it. It can freeze in the fluid reservoir or on the windshield itself, making things worse. Besides, water won’t clean your windows as well.

So follow these tips to keep your windshield clear and your eye on the road.

Find us at:

The Toy Shop
5051 Lincoln Ave.
Cypress, CA 90630
714.826.1171

What To Do In Case Of An Accident in Downey

Screeching tires, crunching metal – it’s an accident! If you’ve ever been in a car accident in Cypress, even a minor one, you know how upsetting it can be. It’s hard to think straight and know what to do.

Let’s review what Cypress drivers should do in case of an accident:

When an accident occurs, you should always stop. Leaving the scene of an accident in Cypress is considered a crime – even if it’s not your fault. And hit and run penalties are fairly severe, possibly resulting in steep fines, loss of your CA driver’s license or even jail time.

Your jurisdiction may require that you try to help someone who is injured by calling for help or performing first aid if you are able. Warn other Buena Park and La Palma motorists by putting out flares, using your flashers or lifting your hood. Call Downey emergency services as soon as possible. Tell the operator if medical or fire help is needed.

Cypress auto owners should always file a police report. It’s tempting for Cypress motorists to skip this if everything seems to be ok. But without a police report, the other guy can say whatever he wants about the accident later, and you’ll not have an objective report to help defend yourself. Discuss the accident only with the police. Emotions are strong after an accident and we naturally want to talk about it – don’t. Never admit fault or guilt to anyone including the Cypress police officer. Sometimes we may feel at fault, but in the eyes of the law, the other guy is responsible.

Truthfully give the officer the facts: such as “I was going thirty miles an hour” not “I wasn’t speeding”. Remember, anything you say to the officer or anyone else can be used against you. Also get the officer’s name and ID number and ask where you can get a copy of the accident report.

Get the facts on the driver and owner of the other vehicle:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Date of birth
  • Driver’s license number and expiration
  • Insurance information

Also take down a description of the other Cypress vehicle, license plate and vehicle identification number. Most CA auto insurance companies don’t record license plate numbers, so the VIN number is the best way to track a vehicle in CA.

Ask witnesses, including passengers, to wait for the police. If they can’t wait, ask for contact information and request that they write a brief description of what they saw. If someone refuses to leave their name, write down their license plate number so the police can track them down later if necessary. Always call your insurance agent or your insurance company. Call or see a physician if you think you may have been injured. For vehicle repairs, call The Toy Shop at 714.826.1171

Contact The Toy Shop to learn more about what do do in case of an auto accident.
You can find us at:
5051 Lincoln Ave.
Cypress, CA 90630
Or call us at 714.826.1171

The Toy Shop and AutoNetTV hope that you never have to use this information and wish you happy Cypress travels.