Posts Tagged ‘Facebook fan site Car Care News’

Is Your Vehicle Safe for Memorial Day Travel?

May 22, 2013

With the Memorial Day Holiday weekend upon us and the summer vacation season fast approaching; there is no better time to “Be Car Care Aware” about your vehicle. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), an average of 13,000 Americans are killed between Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day. A portion of these deaths can be directly attributed to unperformed vehicle maintenance as each year neglected maintenance leads to over 2,600 deaths, nearly 100,000 disabling injuries and more than $2 billion in lost wages, medical expenses and property damage.

“Proper car care is important at all times, but is particularly critical during the holiday travel seasons,” says Rich White, executive director of the Car Care Council. “When vehicle maintenance is put off too long, you’re potentially putting your safety, as well as the safety of your passengers and other drivers, in jeopardy.”

With American drivers spending 11% more time on the road this year, according to a study from the Surface Transportation Policy Project, having a safe car and driving safely are both high priorities as we head into summer. Car trouble, usually due to neglected maintenance, brings an abrupt end to vacation plans and can also lead to dangerous results.

This scenario usually can be avoided with a pre-vacation inspection. This “physical” for your automobile should address the following systems:
•Cooling
•Braking
•Emission
•Steering/suspension
•Fuel
•Electrical and ignition

In addition, an evaluation of the following should be performed: engine performance, tires/wheels, A.C./heater/defroster, instruments/gages, windshield wipers, horns/lights/mirrors, seat belts and the car’s body, inside and out.

Not only can a pre-trip inspection help reduce chances of costly and possibly dangerous road trouble, it also provides an opportunity to have repairs made at home, with one’s own technician who knows the vehicle.

The Car Care Council is the source of information for the “Be Car Care Aware” campaign, educating consumers about the benefits of regular vehicle maintenance and repair. For more information and to download your free copy of the Service Interval Schedule, visit http://www.carcare.org.

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An Automotive Gift for Mother’s Day? You Bet!

April 29, 2013

It’s time to be seriously thinking about Mother’s Day. A great place to look for useful ideas is her driver’s seat, especially if Mom spends a lot of time behind the wheel.

Her vehicle is her home away from home and gifts that enhance her enjoyment of that second home are likely to be appreciated, suggests Rich White, spokesperson for the Car Care Council. “We tend to gravitate toward gifts like jewelry, a framed photo or flowers,” he says. “But why not break from the traditional and dress up her car? Maybe she’s always wanted a sunroof or a cool sound system. Her wish could come true, with the help of your local auto specialty shop or service dealer.”

White suggests that, beyond the obvious gifts such as seat covers or floor mats, Mom might appreciate having her damaged steering wheel replaced with one that’s stylish, possibly even leather covered. A sun-damaged and faded dash could be repaired, replaced, or recovered to upgrade the interior. How about a GPS navigation system, remote starter, or satellite radio?

“Security devices such as a remote keyless entry or alarm systems are also popular add-ons,” says White, “as are custom wheels or wheel covers. Most women are interested in the safety and appearance accessories as opposed to those, which are performance related. Gifts can be inexpensive. Net shopping bags, that hook on back of the driver’s seat, are great gift items too. Just look around”

Right on the heels of Mother’s Day, of course, is Father’s Day, with additional categories of gifts to consider: special tools, custom rims, window tinting, or sound system enhancements, to mention a few. “Gifts for vehicles are always well received and the variety of innovative products never stops growing” adds White.

For more ideas and prices visit your auto supply store, service dealer, or specialty shop.

The Car Care Council is the source of information for the “Be Car Care Aware” campaign, educating consumers about the benefits of regular vehicle maintenance and repair. For more information visit www.carcare.org.

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Green Auto Tips for Earth Day and Your Wallet

April 9, 2013

On April 22nd, when it comes to celebrating Earth Day and helping the environment, vehicle owners should do their part. By addressing a few habits, motorists can contribute, significantly, in helping the environment and their wallet both stay green, say the experts at the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE).

ASE recommends regular vehicle maintenance and better driving habits as two easy-to-implement strategies. What’s more, better automotive habits will help your vehicle last longer and command a better resale price at the same time.

The following tips from ASE can put you on the road to environmentally conscious car care:

Click here for the complete article.

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Drivers Beware! The Peril of Potholes Are Upon Us

March 18, 2013

Hitting a pothole can damage tires, wheels, steering and suspension, wheel alignment and more. The Car Care Council recommends that motorists who experience any of the following warning signs after hitting a pothole should have a professional technician at their local repair shop inspect the vehicle.

  • Loss of control, swaying when making routine turns, bottoming-out on city streets or bouncing excessively on rough roads. These are indicators that the steering and suspension may have been damaged. The steering and suspension are key safety-related systems. Together, they largely determine your car’s ride and handling. Key components are shocks and/or struts, the steering knuckle, ball joints, the steering rack/box, bearings, seals and hub units and tie rod ends.
  • Pulling in one direction, instead of maintaining a straight path, and uneven tire wear. These symptoms mean there’s an alignment problem. Proper wheel alignment is important for the lifespan of tires and helps ensure safe handling.
  • Low tire pressure, bulges or blisters on the sidewalls, or dents in the rim. These problems will be visible and should be checked out as soon as possible as tires are the critical connection between your car and the road in all sorts of driving conditions.

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CRC Reenergizes Lubricants and Penetrants Line with Enhanced Packaging and QR Code Technology

March 5, 2013

CRC Industries, manufacturer of CRC Brakleen® brake parts cleaner and an extensive arsenal of automotive maintenance repair products, has launched an enhanced look for its professional and DIY lubricants and penetrants.

The updated packaging is already hitting store shelves and repair shop bays. According to Dori Ahart, marketing manager for CRC, “The new look is more retail-friendly, yet still easily recognizable as CRC, a brand that professionals have trusted for more than half a century.”

“The labels now prominently display a product description banner which highlights the primary advantage of the product, as well as photos of key applications to help the consumer identify the right lubricant or penetrant for the job,” says Ahart. “We have also added quick response barcodes,” says Ahart. “These QR codes will help consumers access information such as videos, recommended applications, safety data sheets (SDS) and bilingual label translations. We want to give do-it-yourselfers and professionals all the product information they need, whether on the job or at the point of purchase.”

According to Ahart, “The number of smartphone users in our industry is growing rapidly. By using QR code technology, we now have the ability to make our product labels interactive and instantly provide materials that weren’t as readily available to consumers in the past. We believe the QR code adds value on the shelf and also for the professional technician who may want quick access to technical data or important product specifications.”

CRC lubricants and penetrants released in the company’s new packaging are Power Lube® Multi-Purpose Lubricant, Heavy Duty Silicone, White Lithium Grease, Ultra Screwloose® Penetrating Oil and award-winning Freeze-Off® Super Penetrant.

For more information, visit the CRC Industries website at www.crcindustries.com or view CRC product catalogs on your iPad, iPhone or Android device. Download Apple App Download Android App

“Like” CRC on Facebook at www.facebook.com/crcauto.

CRC products are available through automotive wholesale distributors and retailers. CRC trademarked brands include: CRC®, K&W®, Sta-Lube®, and Marykate®. CRC is ISO 9001:2008 certified and adheres to the strictest guidelines for quality in all facets of research, development and production.

 

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Gas-Saving Tips for Trying Times from ASE

February 28, 2013

Every day seems to bring higher prices at the gas pump. Some commuters are sharing rides, others are taking public transportation. But if you are like countless others, you depend on your personal vehicle. So here are some easy-to-follow gas-saving tips from the experts at the non-profit National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) on how to conserve fuel and make sure your car or truck gets optimal miles per gallon.

  • Monitor tires. Under-inflated tires or poorly aligned wheels waste fuel by forcing the engine to work harder.
  • Remove excess weight. Remove unnecessary items from the vehicle. Less weight means better mileage.
  • Consolidate trips and errands. Also, try to travel when traffic is light so you can avoid stop-and-go conditions.
  • Keep your engine “tuned up.” Replace filters and fluids as recommended; have engine performance problems (rough idling, poor acceleration, etc.) corrected. Given today’s high-tech engines, it’s wise to have this type of work done by automobile technicians who are ASE certified in engine performance.
  • Use windows and air conditioning wisely. Keep windows up at highway speeds to reduce air drag. This is true even with the air conditioning on. But turn off the A/C in stop-and-go traffic to save fuel.
  • Avoid excessive idling. Shut off the engine while waiting for friends and family.
  • Observe speed limits. Speeding decreases your miles per gallon.
  • Drive gently. Sudden accelerations guzzle gas. Anticipate traffic patterns ahead and adjust your speed gradually.

The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence works to improve automotive service and repair through the voluntary testing and certification of auto service professionals. ASE-certified technicians wear blue and white insignia and carry credentials listing their exact area(s) of certification. Their employers often display the blue and white ASE sign.

Visit www.ase.com for seasonal car care tips and more.

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Pain at the Pump Returning as Gas Prices Head for $4.

February 19, 2013

Consumers’ chronic pain at the pump is returning with gas prices heading toward $4 a gallon. To help alleviate the pain, the Car Care Council offers some simple and inexpensive vehicle maintenance tips. “You can’t control the price of gas, but you can control how much gas you burn by performing proper maintenance and how you drive. Performing simple and inexpensive maintenance can save more than $1,200 per year in gas costs,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. The Car Care Council offers these gas-saving maintenance tips:

  • Keep your car properly tuned to improve gas mileage by an average of 4 percent.
  • Keep tires properly inflated and improve gas mileage by 3 percent.
  • Replace dirty or clogged air filters and improve gas mileage by as much as 10 percent.
  • Replace dirty spark plugs, which can reduce mileage by two miles per gallon.
  • Change oil regularly and gain another mile per gallon.

Driving behavior also impacts fuel efficiency. The council offers these gas saving driving tips:

  • Observe the speed limit. Gas mileage decreases rapidly above 60 mph.
  • Avoid excessive idling. Idling gets zero miles per gallon. Warming up the vehicle for one or two minutes is sufficient.
  • Avoid quick starts and stops. Aggressive driving can lower gas mileage by 33 percent on the highway and 5 percent in the city.
  • Consolidate trips. Several short trips taken from a cold start can use twice as much gas as one longer multipurpose trip.
  • Don’t haul unneeded items in the trunk. An extra 100 pounds in the trunk reduces fuel economy by 1 to 2 percent.

For more informative content created for motorists who care about cleaner air, safer highways, peak performance, reduced operating cost, and a satisfying automotive experience, visit www.carcarenewsservice.org

What is Your Check Engine Light Telling You?

July 17, 2009

One of the most vital components to a properly functioning vehicle is the ‘Check Engine’ light. It alerts the driver to a variety of potential problems based on the vehicle’s onboard diagnostic system. When the ‘Check Engine’ light comes on, it means that some system in your vehicle, including ignition, fuel injection or emission control, is not operating at peak performance, even if your vehicle appears to you to be running normally.

According to the Car Care Council, a glowing ‘Check Engine’ light doesn’t mean you have to immediately pull the car over to the side of the road, but it does mean you should get the car checked out as soon as possible. Ignoring the warning light could severely damage engine components and incur additional repair expenses.

If your ‘Check Engine’ light comes on, first check the gas cap to make sure it wasn’t left loose after refueling. Sometimes this can trigger the ‘Check Engine’ light. If the cap was loose, the light should go out after a few short trips.

If the gas cap wasn’t the problem and the light remains on steady, have the system checked out as soon as possible. A light that flashes requires more prompt attention, indicating a more severe condition that must be checked out immediately to prevent damage to the catalytic converter. When you experience a flashing light, minimize driving at high speeds or under heavy loads.

When scheduling service, make sure the automotive shop that diagnoses your car has professional technicians who are properly trained and certified for OBDII diagnosis and repair. The technician will connect your vehicle’s computer to a diagnostic computer, which will provide a “trouble” code indicating why the ‘Check Engine’ light was activated.

While the diagnostic computer is connected to your car, the technician can check the idle speed, throttle response, engine temperature, fuel system pressure, manifold vacuum, exhaust emission levels and many other key indicators. Once the problem is diagnosed and fixed, your car’s computer makes sure everything is back to normal, and then turns off the ‘Check Engine’ light.

The Car Care Council recommends reading your vehicle owner’s manual and familiarizing yourself with the purpose of the ‘Check Engine’ light and every other gauge and warning indicator on your dashboard.

The Car Care Council is the source of information for the “Be Car Care Aware” consumer education campaign promoting the benefits of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair to consumers. For more information, visit www.carcare.org.

When Only the Best Is Good Enough.

July 14, 2009

“My customer asked me how much he’d have to spend for a pair of shocks,” said a repair shop owner. “I told him there are ‘good, better and best’ prices, but I install only the good and, preferably, the best. Labor is the same.”

His customer agreed that the minimal cost difference did not justify opting for less than the best. What price is peace of mind? It’s a factor that plays a big part when investing in auto repairs. Once a component is installed you’re likely never to see it unless it fails.

Because most of the approximately 32,800 parts in a typical automobile carry no seal of approval, per se, selection becomes a matter of personal knowledge, experience or your technician’s preference. Each of these may be derived from brand faith based on verified performance.

Seldom does a consumer product enjoy more testing than those listed among the NASCAR Performance brand. The early testing is done, of course, not by NASCAR, but by the companies’ engineers. Once proven by manufacturers to withstand the rigors demanded by NASCAR, the affiliation begins.

“Consider this,” suggests Odis Lloyd, managing director of NASCAR’s automotive licensing division, “there is no more stringent proving ground for an automotive product than the race track, no one better qualified to evaluate its performance than the NASCAR crews, owners and drivers. They have a lot at stake.”

Top race car mechanics and repair shop technicians agree, adding that whether you’re a do-it-yourselfer or someone who leaves the work to a professional, you don’t want to jeopardize the job with a substandard component. After all, why save money asking for cheaper, off-brand parts when labor for installation is the same as the first line product?

How did an automobile racing organization become affiliated with auto parts and equipment manufacturers?

“It was an affiliation that was destined to happen,” says Lloyd. “Stock car racing is the nation’s most popular spectator sport and people can identify these race cars with their own vehicles. It goes beyond brand recognition, it becomes an implied endorsement.”

NASCAR emphasizes that relationships with many of their performance partners go back to the early days of racing, when products suffered the punishment of the rough and rutted beach at Daytona, where fine sand and deep ruts challenged drivers and mechanics. In fact, these conditions resulted in the development of advancements in filtration and ride control on today’s vehicles. Now more than ever, parts factory engineers work side by side with race mechanics, learning as they go and improving the products as they learn.

How does a motorist benefit from this?

First and foremost, it simplifies the selection of components when investing in vehicle maintenance. With the complexity of our vehicles’ various interacting computerized components, a sub-standard part can be the weakest link in a critical chain. This compromises safety, fuel economy and emissions.

Further, since you get what your pay for, and the labor costs don’t change from the budget priced component to the best available, you certainly can expect to get more for your money by reaching for top quality.

Tire Tips: Do You Think You”re Under Pressure?

July 12, 2009

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Hundreds more informative stories, illustrations, photos, videos, and audios at the Car Care News Service web site http://bit.ly/p8w9G