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How to do auto repair

How is auto repair done?

How to do auto Repair in Chico, CA?

Handling your own Chico vehicle maintenance may seem like a huge hassle and may be too much hard work in heat like this, but there’s a lot of utility in knowing the essentials of Chico auto repair. It can save you money and make you feel much more confident in yourself if you have any roadside emergencies.

Who can help with auto repair in Chico, CA?

The staff at Tedious Repairs may not always be open to help you with the auto repair needs you may have.
Below we’ve listed a handful of auto maintenance and repair tasks that most people can do themselves if they have time and the right tools. Of course, you’ll still need knowledge, but we’ll get to that. Before we do, let’s talk about what tools you’ll want to have before starting auto maintenance and repairs.


  • Adjustable wrench
    • You’ll need to loosen and tighten bolts of various sizes, so get a decent adjustable wrench. This is more of a primitive tool. It could cause you to do more harm than good. When using universal tools, many people strip bolts and cause more damage than good. Try to avoid an adjustable wrench and invest in a set of box-end wrenches.
  • Torque wrench
    • Securing screws and bolts with the correct torque (force) is crucial in a car engine. A good torque wrench is essential; don’t skimp on this one, buy an affordable name-brand. This is the biggest mistake with rookie mechanics and people watching youtube videos to fix their car and truck problems.
  • Socket wrench and ratchet set
    • You’ll need a decent selection of sockets to cover the wide range of bolt sizes standard in most vehicles. Sockets alone are the most robust set of tools you can get to help you get through your auto repairs. If you are trying to do a car repair and do not have a socket set, you will be in for a long day.
  • Pliers
    • Engines use many kinds of sturdy fasteners that you’ll want pliers to remove safely. You will not get very far on a cooling system repair without pliers. So invest in a set of these for your toolbox. Places like Harbor Fright sell these things pretty cheap.
  • Phillips and flathead screwdrivers
    • Self-explanatory. Again, purchasing a set with a wide selection will probably cover most of your real-world needs. I use screwdrivers every day. It seems like I reach for these things no matter what I am working on, I would invest in decent ones. They are cheap enough so go with something off Amazon like these.
  • Car Jack
    • Most vehicles come with a jack, but if you don’t have one, get one. Essential for brakes, suspension, oil changes, and just about any other service under the car. Do not forget your jack stands, or that could be the last thing you ever see!
  • Fluids
    • Engine oil and antifreeze are the two most common fluids you’ll want to have on hand at all times. Try to service your transmission and brake fluid every two years or sooner!
  • Shop Rags
    • Particularly for wiping the oil dipstick to ensure you’re reading levels correctly, you will get dirty while working on a car or truck. In the age of the omnipresent smartphone, it’s just smart to have shop rags.

Before you start, though, make sure you know what you’re getting into, or you may end up without a dashboard…


The internet has simplified the process of finding replacement car parts. Search the make and model of your vehicle along with the name of the amount you need to replace, and almost immediately, you’ll be shown hundreds of people fighting for your interest. Just make sure the details match what it says in your owner’s manual. One of the most popular sites for cheap car parts is Napa Auto Parts, so you may want to start there:

Napa Auto Parts

Often  the task can be made even easier by simply bringing your vehicle to your local auto part store and asking them to look it up for you. Usually, you only need the make and model of your car and the variant types, too (Honda Accord ES-X-whatever, etc.). Or, if you prefer, you can bring it into our auto shop, and we’ll be more than happy to complete parts repair and service for you!

Now, let’s get to the things you can do yourself now that you have the tools and set aside a few hours to complete the job. Are you excited?

NOTE: We cannot give instructions on how to do these jobs here, especially not in one post. No worries, though; the internet has an infinite list of excellent repair manuals you can find by simply searching “how to repair PART NAME.” We suggest focusing on YouTube videos which often have everything you need to see and compacted into a relatively short time. Keep your phone nearby to watch as you work.


SIGNS YOU NEED Belts: Squeaking or squealing at regular intervals, especially when the cooling system is active.

Drive belt replacement is relatively easy to work on. Often the belts are old, cracked, or worn, and all you need to do is get them off the pulleys (the wheel-lookin’ gears that the belt is wrapped around) and put another one in place. You can then adjust the tightness of the belt using the tensioner pulley to get it to factory standards.

Older vehicles have many belts to drive the various parts of the car, including A/C, wipers, and power steering. Still, newer vehicles tend to have a single serpentine belt that powers all these systems using one belt. Regardless, look for signs of deterioration and replace those belts to fix the squeaking.

CHICO Vehicle Services

SIGNS IT’S TIME: Car won’t start, lights fading/blinking out mysterious electronics-related issues.

If you’ve left your lights on and killed your battery before, you know what this one’s about. Old batteries will eventually die, and malfunctions or accidents can damage them beyond repair, necessitating battery replacement. You’ll need a multimeter for this one to test and measure the battery’s output and the alternator. If they’re off, the easiest recourse is usually replacing the battery or alternator. Your owner’s manual will tell you where the alternator is located, although the battery should be commonly recognizable. If not:

where car battery is located

Don’t worry; it’s pretty safe to do battery work yourself. Just know the only thing you need to avoid is bridging the positive and the negative terminals on the battery; that’s the two places you connect to when you need a jump. Bridging the terminals is plausible if one drops a long wrench while loosening or tightening the bolts on the bar that fastens down the battery, but indeed it isn’t easy to do, even on accident.


SIGNS IT’S TIME: Squeaking, bad braking response times, vibrating or shaking during braking.

Alright, the braking system’s probably the most an end-user will want to do themselves, as it requires a bit of hard labor and certainty that you’ve done the job right, as you don’t want to get anything wrong when it comes to brakes. But once you know what you’re doing, it’s not too hard to do, as long as you have time, tools, and maybe a second hand to make it a bit easier…

Again, brake repair is something you’ll want to watch a few videos for before you begin, and then keep them on hand as you work. When it’s said and done, you’ll have the peace of mind that your brake pads won’t give out at the wrong time, which is worth the effort.


leaking AC compressor system

Visibly leaking fluids, overheating engine, or it’s just been 7,000-15,000 miles.

One of the most common signs that you need to replace your fluids is your car overheating. If there’s not enough engine oil lube to reduce mechanical friction, that can cause the engine to become far hotter than usual and burn off other fluids, too, including antifreeze. This becomes a cascading problem that leads to permanent engine damage, so always check your fluid levels at the appropriate mileage. That’s usually 7,000 to 15,000 for most standard oil or synthetic fluids, respectively, but always check your owner’s manual or manufacturer’s maintenance schedule to be sure.


Ultimately, the fluid change process usually involves little more than finding the cap for the appropriate fluid, taking it off, pouring in the liquid, and then putting the lid back on securely. Often the caps are clearly labeled and hard to miss.

And folks, always remember: never remove your radiator cap immediately after driving or if it feels hot or warm to the touch at all. That’s dangerous. Always do fluid replacements before going, and in the case of a complete and proper oil change- not just a refill- be sure to empty the oil into a drip pan before refilling.


SIGNS IT’S TIME: Stuffy air, engine overheating, poor circulation, and cooling.

Oil, engine, and cabin air filters are the most common filter replacements for end users to handle themselves. They’re not too expensive either, so there’s not much excuse to ignore them. Most often, you pop open the filter compartment, pull out the old filter, replace it with a new filter, close the box, and viola: everything works noticeably better.

There’s also a transmission and fuel filter, but generally, you’ll want an ASE-certified technician like one of our guys to handle that level of auto repair. Some vehicles have other specialty filters too, and you should most certainly review your owner’s manual when it comes to servicing those.

Be Confident In Your auto repair!

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As Chico’s premier auto repair shop, it may seem odd to give this kind of advice for free. But we want you to have the kind of confidence we enjoy when it comes to working with your vehicle. We believe that anyone interested is more than capable of learning how to handle themselves and their own Chico auto repairs.

Nonetheless, if you need complex car and truck service, we’ll gladly handle it. Our certified techs conduct all auto services, including tire rotation, steering and suspension repair, fuel system diagnostic, recharging AC systems with refrigerant, wheel service, oil changes; timing belt replacement; transmission repair; multi-point vehicle inspections to catch issues before they escalate; and more.

WHERE TO GO for auto repair in Chico, CA

We service all major makes and models, including Asian imports and European cars. That means Honda, Acura, Nissan, Infiniti, Mazda, Hyundai, Kia, Toyota, Lexus, Dodge, Chevy, Ford, and everything. Our service includes a solid warranty guarantee proudly provided by your friendly neighborhood Chico auto techs at Tedious Repairs. So if you are looking for auto repair in Chico, give us a call today!


We’re offering discount auto service to anyone who mentions this website! That’s right, all you have to do is say you read about this coupon, and you get a discount!

Get off any paid service by letting us know you found this website and read our blog. Student discounts are also available, ask with proof of ID, and we’ll be glad to set you up!

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Benefits & Services

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  • Expert Technicians
  • Free Diagnostics with Service
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