We are a top-rated local Mazda repair services shop in Menlo Park, CA. We serve the greater San Francisco Peninsula, including Atherton, Daly City, Palo Alto, and Belmont. As your local Mazda service experts, we want to educate Bay Area drivers on potential problems with popular models like the Mazda 3, 5, 6, CX-3, and CX-5. By staying informed and diligent with maintenance, you can keep your Mazda running smoothly for years.

Owning a Mazda combines style, performance, and value – when properly maintained. But even reliable vehicles develop issues over time. At our shop in Menlo Park, we understand Mazda vehicles inside and out. We’ve seen every problem possible with Mazda models, and can quickly diagnose and repair any issue. We also service Mazda owners in Palo Alto, Belmont, Atherton and other nearby cities.

In this article, we’ll break down the most common mechanical problems with recent Mazda 3, 5, 6, CX-3 and CX-5 models. We want drivers to know what to watch out for and when to seek professional service. Read on to learn about potential issues with brakes, transmissions, electrical systems and more.



Brake Replacement

Your car’s braking system is the first line of defense in an impending accident. Driving a car with bad brakes puts the driver and other road users at risk of an accident. On the other hand, ensuring your vehicles have well-functioning brakes can save your life and other road users. Therefore, ensure your brakes are in good condition before driving.

A good braking system is important to a safe journey. At M & R Automotive Repair, we offer brake replacement services needed for the safe operation of the vehicle. We have expert technicians trained to fix your vehicle brakes. So you can be assured that your car is in safe hands.

SMOG Check

We are a STAR certified SMOG check station. If you need a smog check to register your vehicle in California, we can help. Give us a call if you have any questions about getting your vehicle smogged, or click the button below to schedule an appointment to bring your vehicle in.

Mazda 3: Premature Brake Wear, Infotainment Glitches, Manual Transmission Problems

The Mazda 3 combines sporty handling with excellent fuel economy. It’s one of the most popular compact cars nationwide. But some owners encounter frustrating problems.

Excessive brake wear is common, especially on 2014 models. We often see customers replacing brake pads, rotors and calipers more often than expected. This accelerated wear stems from underlying issues with the brake system. Bring your Mazda 3 into our shop if you’re replacing brakes too often. We’ll thoroughly inspect the system to find and fix the root cause.

Infotainment problems also affect Mazda 3 models. Unresponsive touchscreens, slow interface speeds, and random glitches detract from the driving experience. We have the tools and know-how to diagnose infotainment issues. In some cases, a software update resolves the problems. Other times, we may need to replace hardware components.

Manual transmission troubles, while not widespread, impact certain Mazda 3 model years. Grinding between 3rd and 4th gears, hard shifting, and even complete transmission failures stem from worn synchro rings and bearings. To avoid costly transmission repairs down the road, pay attention to any unusual noises or shifting behavior. Then bring your Mazda 3 into our shop for prompt diagnosis and repair.

Mazda 5: Manual Transmission Woes, AC System Failures, Engine Misfires

Although discontinued in 2015, the Mazda 5 still sees its share of problems. Owners deal with failing air conditioning systems, transmission issues, and intermittent engine troubles.

Clutch repairs are common, often around 50,000 miles. Signs of a worn clutch include gear grinding, resistance accelerating, and chattering noises. Replacing the clutch before severe damage occurs saves money in the long run. Our technicians will thoroughly inspect your Mazda 5’s clutch and recommend prompt repairs as needed.

AC system failures also frustrate Mazda 5 owners. Loud compressor noise, weak airflow, and lack of cooling stem from refrigerant leaks or electrical problems. Diagnosing AC issues requires professional equipment and specialized training – which our expert technicians have. We’ll pinpoint the exact cause and recommend cost-effective repairs.

Engine misfires occasionally affect the Mazda 5 as well. The underlying causes range from faulty ignition components to clogged fuel injectors and beyond. Misfires can severely damage your engine if left unchecked. Bring your Mazda 5 to our shop at the first sign of rough idle, loss of power, or Check Engine light activation. We’ll diagnose the misfire trigger and make necessary repairs.

Mazda 6: Transmission Woes, Turbocharger Defects, Electrical Gremlins

The Mazda 6 sedan combines athletic handling with an upscale interior. But it has some inherent mechanical flaws owners should look out for.

Transmission failures top the list of Mazda 6 problems, generally requiring expensive repairs or full unit replacement. Models not properly maintained are most vulnerable. But even some well-cared-for Mazda 6 sedans experience premature transmission wear or sudden failure. Listen for any unusual noises or shifting behavior, and bring your vehicle in if you notice signs of trouble. The sooner we can inspect your transmission, the better chance we have of fixing it without replacement.

Turbocharged engines also have defects, primarily broken wastegate rivets causing reduced performance. Turbos are complex systems – repairs run $1,500+ in parts alone. That’s why it’s critical to address odd sounds or boost issues early. Our expert Mazda technicians will diagnose turbo defects and recommend the most cost-effective solution.

Electrical gremlins cause all sorts of problems as well. Faulty window switches, radio glitches, and random warning lights point to deeper electrical issues. Tracking down the root cause takes proper diagnostic tools and technical know-how – which our technicians have. We’ll find the source of electrical troubles in your Mazda 6 and make necessary repairs for smooth, reliable performance.

Mazda CX-3: DC-DC Converter Failure, Liftgate Corrosion, Brake Clip Defect

The subcompact CX-3 crossover combines sporty driving dynamics with excellent fuel economy. But it has a few problem areas owners should monitor closely.

Potential electrical failures are most serious. The DC-DC converter, which controls electrical current flow, can short circuit without warning. This stems from a flawed charging control program that allows overvoltage conditions. Resulting fires have led to recalls and extended warranty coverage. If your CX-3 exhibits stalling, no-starts, or charging system trouble, have it inspected immediately. We’ll reprogram the powertrain control module, replace damaged parts, and get your vehicle running safely again.

Corrosion is another issue, causing unexpected liftgate failures. Water seeps into the liftgate struts, leading to premature rust and cylinder damage. A heavy liftgate then drops suddenly with no support. Recall campaigns attempt to address this safety hazard, but not every affected vehicle gets repaired in time. If your CX-3 liftgate sticks or drops erratically, bring it to our shop right away. We’ll inspect the struts, make necessary repairs, and ensure safe operation.

Braking system defects also affect certain model years. Improperly installed brake hose retaining clips can fracture, resulting in fluid leakage and brake failure. Modified replacement clips avoid damage during installation. If you notice any loss of brake pressure, pedal vibration, or puddling under your CX-3, schedule service immediately. We’ll thoroughly inspect for clip damage, fluid leaks or other brake problems. Your safety is our top priority.

Mazda CX-5: Transmission Wear, Electrical Faults, Suspension Issues

The CX-5 compact SUV combines practicality, comfort and driving enjoyment. But with age comes potential transmission troubles, electrical gremlins and suspension problems.

Transmission wear and eventual failure is most serious. Models without proper maintenance history are especially vulnerable. But even some well-maintained CX-5s experience premature wear or sudden breakdown. Listen for unusual noises and pay attention to shifting behavior. Any signs of trouble require immediate inspection to avoid catastrophic damage or failure. Our expert Mazda technicians will diagnose transmission issues promptly and recommend the best repair approach.

Electrical system glitches also occur as CX-5 models age. Faulty alternators, parasitic battery drains, and finicky infotainment systems sap the driving experience. Tracking down electrical gremlins takes high-tech tools and technical know-how – which our shop has. We’ll find the source of electrical troubles fast, make necessary repairs, and get your CX-5 running right.

Suspension and steering component wear leads to alignment issues, vibration, and wandering on the road. Ball joints, control arm bushings, struts and other chassis parts wear out over time. It’s essential to address any steering or suspension concerns right away, before greater – and costlier – damage occurs. Our technicians will thoroughly inspect your CX-5’s chassis, provide expert diagnosis, and make all necessary repairs. We’ll have you back on the road quickly with crisp, precise handling.

Protect Your Investment With Proactive Service

We hope this breakdown of common Mazda problems helps you make informed decisions about maintenance and repair. Even reliable vehicles like the Mazda 3, 5, 6, CX-3 and CX-5 encounter issues over time. Stay proactive with routine service to maximize performance and value while minimizing cost. And remember: our expert Mazda technicians are here when you need us! We have the technical knowledge, specialized tools and genuine passion for the Mazda brand.