Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Don't Skimp On Your Vehicle's Maintenance


Motor vehicles are an important aspect of our lives. They ensure that we travel faster and save time. This means owing to their importance, such cars must be well taken care of. The perfect workings of a car will greatly depend on how well the owner takes care of it. Just like any machine, if you skimp your car, you will not notice but it will eventually have the potential to become prone to breakdowns. It may even end up causing an accident and putting you and others in danger.

Importance of regular vehicle maintenance.

Having regular and timely car maintenance checks is a great way to ensure your car from undue damage. A timely visit to the mechanic will help ensure its engine and other parts are functioning correctly. The same way a person requires regular medical attention and check-ups, automobiles equally perform better with mechanical attention. Do not, therefore, wait until your car is a complete wreck before taking it to the mechanic. Auto maintenance is a great way to reduce on car maintenance costs. If you regularly take your car to the mechanic, it becomes easy to detect a possible problem earlier. Such a problem then can be rectified in a timely manner. This is before it escalates and gets out of hand. If a mechanical problem persists, it is then likely to cost you more in terms of repairs. Get the problems fixed once and for all. There is nothing more distressing then your car developing problems regularly. You, therefore, must stop skimping your car. Cars with problems are a great cause of accidents on the roads. Lack of regular car maintenance is likely to cause accidents. This is because engine problems and the braking system must always be checked and maintained. Tires and oil filters also need to be regularly checked. A well-maintained vehicle is easier to drive and is a sure way to prevent accidents. Protect your life and others from accidents by taking your car for regular visits to the mechanic shop.

Auto experts will also attest to the importance of professional car maintenance and the effects on their performance. A well-maintained car is likely to perform much better as compared to a poorly maintained one. The mechanics will check all the car parts to ensure all loose ends and bolts are tightened. Worn out parts are also replaced with new ones. Moving parts and the engine is equally well-oiled and greased, therefore, making the car perform better. This is in terms of speed and gas consumption.

People on a tight budget are more likely to skimp their cars. This is, in reality, likely to cause more damage to the car and cost them more in terms of repairs. Do not pay for the repair of your car due to skimping. This coupled with issues such as accidents and getting on the wrong side of the law can become stressful. Ensure the efficiency of your motor vehicle by having it routinely checked by an experienced and professional mechanic.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Gary_Ward/2206373

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Sunday, June 26, 2016

Top 4 Tips For Car Body Care


There's no doubt that every vehicle depreciates in value with time. If you have been planning to sell the car in a few years and want to get a good deal, then you should not bring down the value of your car by not taking care of its appearance. A car which has not been maintained properly will hardly get any buyers.

The bait for coaxing the buyer is how the car looks from inside and outside. Maintaining your car and keeping it in the best possible condition is surely important not to ensure just the longevity of the vehicle, but also to improve its sale-ability. And of course, who doesn't like to drive a nice looking car!

Here's a list of things you need to look after to ensure your car stays in pristine condition.

  • Car Wash
At least once or twice a month you need to wash your car properly. By doing that you can ensure that dirt is removed from the surface of the body & under the chassis and keeps it completely clean. Staining and rusting might occur if you fail to remove it on time. You need to keep in your mind that even heavy rains don't remove the contaminants off the car. It's better if pressure hose is used to wash the car.

  • Car Waxing
By using car wax, you can ensure that a layer of protection is created which protects the car from harsh external elements such as rain, dead bugs, and bird droppings and avoids corrosion or rusting. The contaminants get stuck in the wax can be easily washed from the car. The breakdown of the molecular structure of paint can also be prevented with the help of car wax as it stops harsh exposure to UV rays and oxygen.

  • Rusting
When iron is exposed for a long period of time to moisture & oxygen then rusting occurs. Due to salt in the air, especially in coastal areas a car's under body can rust faster. During heavy rains and while driving through puddles your car's under body comes into contact with water. The best care for this problem can only be taken by professional and expert mechanics at a renowned auto repair shop.

  • Dents And Scratches Repairing
If you don't have any dents or scratches on your car, then there's no problem in considering yourself as lucky. Not many can boast of this miracle because no matter how much you try to protect your beloved car, it will get some scratches or dents here and there. If you have dents and scratches on your car and if the paint is peeled off during the impact then the car's body is susceptible to rusting. It's recommended that you should visit a renowned car body repair center to get dents and scratches fixed.


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Thursday, June 23, 2016

Passenger-Side Protection Lacking in Small Overlap Crashes - IIHS News



Vehicles with good driver-side protection may leave passengers at risk

ARLINGTON, Va. — Drivers of vehicles with good small overlap front ratings from the Insurance Institute from Highway Safety can expect to be protected well in a frontal crash involving the left corner of the vehicle. But how would the passengers sitting next to them fare in a right-side small overlap crash? A new study shows that good protection doesn’t always extend across the front seat.

The Institute conducted 40 mph passenger-side small overlap tests on seven small SUVs with good driver-side small overlap ratings. Only one of the vehicles, the 2016 Hyundai Tucson, performed at a level corresponding to a good rating, and the others ran the gamut from poor to acceptable.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Compact Sedan Comparison Video



If you're shopping for a compact car, there are plenty of options. Check out how these three popular entries measure up: the Chevrolet Cruze, Honda Civic and Hyundai Elantra. Watch the video for the hits and misses of all three models.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Summer Driving Tips - Keep Your Summer Road Trips Safe And Fun


Follow our summer driving tips and plan for a safer, more fun summer. The summer months are the time when most Americans decide to plan their biggest road trips. That means that you are going to be spending more time on the road, driving greater distances, for longer periods of time.

Our summer driving tips will make these periods of time safer. In general, such long car trips means that there is more of a chance that your car might break down. That is why you want to follow these tips:

Summer Driving Tips For Before You Hit the Road:

· Tires. Check the tread depth and pressure of your tires, as well as whether or not there is uneven wear. And be sure to pack a real spare. If you are out in the middle of nowhere and your tire blows, you might have to drive quite a distance on your spare. Make sure that you switch your winter tires to all-season or summer tires.

· Service your vehicle. Make sure that you take your car in for that needed oil change before you hit the road. Be sure that you all of your fluids are full (check the oil, windshield washer fluid, coolant/antifreeze, etc.)

· Check your cooling system. Unless you know a lot about cars, we suggest that you have professionals help you check the radiator, belts and hoses, coolant, cooling fans, water pump, and heater core.

· Also check (or have someone else check) the tie rod ends, steering components, ball joints, refrigerant level, compressor clutch, etc. Check your wiper blades and battery, too.

· Pack an emergency kit that includes: jumper cables, flashlight, first aid, flares, water, nonperishable food, extra washer fluid, basic tools, and anything else that you think you might need.

· Packing for your trip and loading your car: be smart about it. You do not need to take your entire wardrobe for a weekend trip! The less you bring, the lighter your car will be, and the less gas you will use. Be sure that when you load your car you keep the driver's visibility clear (if it is not, perhaps you need to rethink the items that are really necessary to bring on your trip). Keep the items that you may need on top (like snacks, camera, etc.)

Summer Driving Tips For Once You Are on Your Merry Way:

· Stay awake! Long drives mean longer hours at the wheel, and most people cannot handle more than a few hours driving without some kind of break. Take breaks when you need them. Switch drivers often. Pull over for the night if you are really drowsy. Before you drive, make sure that you are well-rested from the night before. Caffeine may help in the short-term, but it can hinder you in the long-run.

· Why not take the scenic route? Do not be in a hurry to get to your destination. A road trip is not a good excuse to set your cruise control at 10mph above the speed limit. Besides, a road trip is not just about the destination, it is about the journey.

· If you are towing a boat or trailer, be sure that you drive slowly and smoothly. You must do everything with more caution, including turning, accelerating, braking, and changing lanes. Be sure that you have good mirrors that will help you cover your blind spots.

· Try to drive during the daylight hours. You will be able to see better and will have more reaction time to obstacles up ahead.

· Watch out for our favorite furry critters!

The most important summer driving tip is to have fun! Well, actually, that is the second most important. The most important summer driving tip is to be safe and cautious.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Anne_Clarke/33662

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Nine Signs Your Brakes Need Repair


Normal wear and tear on a car's brake system requires regular inspection of the them and other components. Skipping maintenance or putting off minor repairs can lead to serious - and expensive - problems. Driving habits determine how long they last. Driving carefully extends the life of most of them like rotors and calipers. Keep the car's suspension system - shocks and struts - well balanced, too. A poorly balanced vehicle puts unnecessary strain and wear on the brakes, and they wear out faster.

Symptoms of a brake problem:

  1. The brake warning light is activated.
The problem: The car giving an alert that something is amiss in the system.

The solution: Get the car inspected by a trained mechanic as soon as possible. Replace or repair any worn or damaged parts, and follow a regular inspection and maintenance schedule in the future.

  1. They make a squealing or grinding noise when they are applied.
The problem: Any grinding, squealing, screeching or rubbing noises heard during braking indicate it is time to have the system inspected. The pads and shoes may have started to wear down and need to be replaced. In some cases, the gasket between the pad and the piston may be missing, causing vibrations to escalate to squealing sounds.

The solution: Replace worn pads and shoes immediately, before they damage other parts. If the gasket between the pad and piston is missing, have the technician replace it.

  1. The brake pedal is spongy or slow to respond. Brakes feel weak.
They still work, but it takes longer to stop and sudden stops create less braking power. You may have to press down farther on the pedal to get results. If the pedal goes all the way to the floor, the car may have no braking power.

The problem: The pads may be too worn to effectively stop the car, or the fluid is too low to allow for adequate braking pressure. In the worst case scenario, the brake power boost unit may have failed or the master cylinder has failed.

The solution: Replace the pads as soon as possible, and have the fluid checked for contamination. If necessary, replace the fluid. Checking the brake power boost unit requires a special vacuum measurement tool, because brake boosters are vacuum-controlled. If the unit has failed, it must be replaced. Failed master cylinders also must be replaced.

  1. The brakes make a "clunking" sound.
The problem: Something may be loose inside the system, such as the bolts that hold them together or attach them to the suspension. Suspension components may be worn or broken. Ball joints, steering racks, tie rod ends, wheel bearings and more can cause clunking sounds.

The solution: Have the vehicle inspected immediately and repair any loose components or worn parts.

  1. The brake pedal is too firm.
If applying them suddenly feels very difficult and it is hard to depress the pedal, this can be an indication of a significant problem.

The problem: The vacuum brake booster system may have a leak or it may be failing. There may be an obstruction in the line circulating fluid throughout the system.

The solution: Get the car to a mechanic immediately. Having any leaks in the vacuum booster system repaired. If there are no leaks, the booster has probably failed and needs to be replaced. The technician should check for blockages in the lines. In some cases, the line has been damaged or pinched and needs to be repaired.

  1. The brakes seem to be "grabbing" or braking causes the car to pull to one side.
The problem: Grabbing or pulling when braking can indicate that they or suspension system has a problem. In some cases, the discs may be damaged.

The solution: Replace worn or contaminated pads. If the disc is damaged, replace the discs in pairs to ensure the car brakes evenly.

  1. The brake pedal vibrates when brakes are applied.
Most cars have ABS, and the pedal will vibrate during sudden, hard stops as part of the normal anti-lock braking function. Other vibrations felt through the pedal or steering wheel during braking indicates a problem.

The problem: There may be metal-on-metal rubbing in the system. The brake rotors may be warped or being damaged by worn-out pads.

The solution: Replace any worn our contaminated pads. If the discs have been damaged, replace them immediately. Check the suspension system and replace any worn or damaged parts. Have the mechanic check the car's alignment, and get an alignment if necessary.

  1. The brakes "drag" or do not immediately release when the driver takes their foot off the brake pedal.
The problem: The system may have a bad wheel cylinder, causing them to remain under pressure. The parking brake may not have fully released, leaving it engaged slightly at all times.

The solution: If the technician finds a problem with the wheel cylinder, it must be replaced. If the problem is with the parking brake, the cable control may need lubrication or replaced.

  1. There is a strong burning smell near the tires.
The problem: Brake pads may be seriously worn, or they may have been over-used. If the driver habitually "rides the brakes" or brakes very hard, brakes can overheat. This often occurs when coming down a steep hill or mountain drive. If the smell occurs during regular driving, a more serious problem exists. A caliper piston may be locked, or there may be a problem with the parking brake or brake pads.

The solution: Drive smart, and do not ride the brakes or drive with the parking brake engaged. If driving down steep hills frequently, downshift rather than constantly use the brakes to slow the vehicle. If the burning smell of overheated brakes occurs during normal use, get the brake system inspected. Replace or repair caliper pistons, brake pads or parking brake components as needed.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Ron_Haugen/408949

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Saturday, June 11, 2016

Car Repair - Fix Minor Problems, Focus On Prevention


Taking care of minor problems and getting regularly scheduled maintenance on your car is a good way to avoid more costly car repairs down the road.

Keeping track of when your vehicle is due for an oil change is one example of preventive steps that can help avoid more costly work. Most oil-change businesses post a sticker on the driver's side of the windshield, telling you when you should get your next oil change. The sticker lists both the odometer reading and the date when your next oil change should happen. The mark you hit first - either the mileage or the date - is a signal to get your vehicle in for an oil change.

By changing your vehicle's oil in a timely manner, you are continually lubricating the engine and its inner pieces, which can keep you from more expensive repairs.

Your owner's manual is another key in determining when to have repairs done on your vehicle. The manual lists scheduled maintenance to keep your vehicle running properly - and once again keeping you from more costly car repairs. If you no longer have the owner's manual or purchased the vehicle used and no manual was provided to you, check an auto parts store or track one down on the Internet. Knowing what maintenance is recommended for your vehicle at 30,000, 45,000 and 60,000 miles is vital to knowing what work to have done on your vehicle and when. Again, by doing the scheduled maintenance, you are likely to keep from a more costly repair down the road.

Also, when a warning light or message pops on from the dashboard, address the issue as soon as possible. If it says "check engine" or "check tires, do so as soon as possible. If after checking and taking action (filling all four tires, for instance) the light or message is still lit, take the vehicle into a car-care center, the vehicle dealership or a service station as soon as possible. You don't want to ignore the warning light for too long and have a car repair in the thousands of dollars, when sooner attention could have kept the repair bill to a minimum.

When car repairs are needed, you need to go to an establishment with which you are comfortable. If you are new to an area or don't have an established relationship with a certain repair shop, ask friends and family. You may also want to get estimates from two or three places just to get a sense of their diagnostic ability and pricing, as well as your comfort level with the mechanic or shop owner. Feeling comfortable with your repair shop is so important for a car owner. Your confidence in a repair shop - feeling they provide quality work at a fair price - will bring you back. Feeling that your vehicle wasn't fixed properly or that you overpaid for the repair won't.

Taking preventative steps, as well as addressing minor problems as they happen will keep you from more costly car repair.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Andrew_Stratton/83489

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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

2016 Midsize Sedan Comparison Test - Kelley Blue Book



The 2016 model year has been a big one for midsize sedans, with six of 11 entries having been completely redesigned or significantly updated. We set off on a 600-mile road trip that took us from our home base in Southern California to Lake Las Vegas in Henderson, Nevada. We swapped cars and notes along the way, evaluating each vehicle in key categories ranging from highway driving to infotainment to rear seat roominess.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

The 3 Most Important Tips for Keeping Your Tires in Top Shape


Tires are considered one of the most important components of a car, and their upkeep is not only a major part of car maintenance, but also part of driver and passenger safety. However, wheels are also susceptible to premature damage and wear, so it's important to consider a few maintenance tips to keep them in good shape for a long time. Drivers should inspect them regularly for adequate air pressure. An inexpensive rotation can help to maintain tread wear and promote the maximum amount of life. And drivers should also consider that their driving habits may have an impact on the long-term quality of their wheels.

Inspect Air Pressure Regularly

Optimal tire inflation is crucial for achieving longevity and top performance. Also, optimal inflation can help with fuel efficiency. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, an adequate amount of air pressure can improve fuel economy by 3.3 percent.

Experts recommend inspecting air pressure at least once per month and before and after long road trips. A driver should also apply the recommended amount of pressure instead of the maximum amount. If the wheels are underinflated, they're at risk for irregular wear and require more energy and fuel for the vehicle, as they don't roll as smoothly and must work harder on the road to compensate. If they are overinflated, it will lead to a harsh driving experience and reduced traction.

Not only is regular inspection beneficial for car maintenance, but it's also an important part of car and driver safety. According to studies by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, underinflated tires are the leading cause of tire-related crashes.

Rotation

According to Michelin, drivers should get their tires rotated every 6,000-8,000 miles. Some shops may provide a free rotation when a driver buys their tires all at once; if they don't, drivers needn't worry, as this service is usually inexpensive and worth the investment. A person who is mechanically inclined can even perform this task at home with the purchase and use of a hydraulic floor jack.

Many car experts and mechanics would agree that rotation is needed to ensure more uniform tread wear, as wheels tend to wear in different places depending on where they are situated on the car. This will guarantee more consistent performance of the vehicle, and a driver will also get the most out of the wheels' lives.

Consider Driving and Parking Habits

Many people may forget the main thing they do in a car that determines the integrity of a tire: yes, driving. Not only can being a good driver prevent road accidents and save lives, but it can also help to reduce tread wear and promote longevity of those rubbery wheels.

Since tires are in direct contact with the road, they deal with a tremendous amount of abuse when a person engages in risky driving habits. So if a person doesn't want to wear out the tread too soon, they can limit the amount of "bad" driving habits such as aggressive driving, speeding, and hard braking.

Drivers should also be mindful of what's on the road and in parking lots and driveways when they park their vehicles; treads are very susceptible to tears from broken glass, nails, and potholes. For extra measure, a person may also inspect for sharp debris in the treads every once in a while.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Anders_Abadie/1022510

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Thursday, June 2, 2016

Why Car Repair Should Be Left To The Professionals


In today's society, DIY projects have become a necessity for many. This is also often applied to car repair. Some people think that because they have knowledge of cars and their working components, many of what they consider easy projects can be done in their home garage. However, a lot of these projects aren't nearly as easy as they may seem.

Clutch

Fixing a clutch. Simple enough, right? It seems to be. However, most people don't realize that fixing a clutch is more complicated and can be a delicate procedure. The biggest hurdle one would find is that many times it involves dropping the engine. This is not something that most can do in their garage.

Recharging the A/C

Every automotive store carries A/C recharging kits. If they do that, then it must be something a novice could do, right? Wrong. Not even counting the added complications of Freon, there is so much more to it. Working with the A/C system involves very high, specific pressure, specialized tubing, and odd components - most of these allusively buried in the dashboard or tied into an incomprehensible computer - not to mention many other things related to the first law of thermodynamics. If that word is not recognizable, you more than likely have no business even being in there.

Working around or on the airbag

Though thankfully this particular area rarely needs to be worked on or around, it is still a good idea to know what the possible outcomes could be. The most important thing to think about if working on or around this area - including any close by panels - is that there is a significantly sized explosive charge tucked away in there. Does 'explosive charge' sound a lot like a bomb? It should, because that is essentially what it is. Definitely make sure that someone with training in that particular area works on that part of your car. A hand being blown off isn't worth the extra money saved by doing it ones-self. It is guaranteed that the hospital bill for that would be significantly more expensive than just having a professional do it for you.

Rebuilding a differential

Anytime someone is messing around with gears it can lead to disaster. It takes a delicate, sensitive touch. Differentials are even trickier. If the gears are even slightly off, your car will sound like it has been taken over by a disgruntled poltergeist. Not to mention that in a very short time, the teeth will completely wear out and disintegrate. The contact patch between the gears has to be so carefully aligned that it is mathematically perfect.

Even the seemingly simplest of jobs are so involved that many times doing your own car repair can cost more than taking it to the shop. A car repair technician can do the job right the first time and save lots of time and energy.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Ace_Abbey/851844

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