Car Maintenance: 7 Essentials One Must Never Forget

There are millions of vehicle owners across the world, yet so many still do not know the basic things required for the proper upkeep of their car. Maintenance is key to the longevity of a vehicle, and that includes the interior, exterior, under the hood and of course the paperwork. It’s not a one size fits all situation when it comes to car maintenance, so it always recommended that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions instead of taking your vehicle to a random repair shop. 

Also, there are sections of the vehicle that require frequent checks more than others. Here’s a list of seven essentials you need to ensure that your vehicle, regardless of year or model, performs at an optimum level.

CREATE A SCHEDULE FOR PREVENTIVE CARE

Research the type of vehicle you have and look for a highly rated workshop in your area that specifically deals with your make and model vehicle. Put the return dates in your calendar, so that you can always be on the ball with your vehicle’s maintenance. You are supposed to know when servicing is needed.

DETAILING YOUR CAR

Regular vacuuming prevents items from getting lodged or even rotting in your vehicle. This also prevents mould and mildew from building up, keeping your car smelling fresh. Wipe the seats and regularly touched areas with recommended products for the vehicle interior. If you do not wash the vehicle yourself, try to choose a car wash that uses soft brushes that won’t scratch the car.

SHORT TERM VEHICLE CHECK

  1. Oil and Coolant: must be checked on a monthly basis or after few gas fill-ups, depending on how often or far you drive. Make sure to do the check only when your engine is cool enough. Low levels of oil or coolant can lead to major engine problems. The owner’s manual in your glove compartment will indicate where to find these under the vehicle hood.

ii Air Filter: regulates the airflow to your engine in order to keep debris out. Proper attire follows also helps fuel efficiency, reduces emissions, and help protect the engine. In fact, you can change the filter yourself by following your instruction manual.

iii. Tire tread and pressure: are key to a safe ride and fuel efficiency.

  1. All Lights and Signals

It’s easy to miss when one of your lights or signals isn’t working. Each month, you should walk around your car and observe both your parking light and turn signals.

  1. Tire Rotation: Getting your tires rotated frequently will allow for a more stable ride. The treading on the outer part wears faster and rotating the tires will make sure that the treading disintegrates evenly and allow for safer driving.

CHECKS TO MAKEOVER THE LONG TERM

  1. Applying Wax: Twice per year is the recommended number of times to wax your vehicle in order to keep it shiny and prevent rust.
  2. Transmission fluid: This operates like the oil to protect your vehicle’s engine but even more so it keeps all the moving parts working properly. The vehicle manufacturers know best, so follow there instruction on when to check and change your transmission fluid.

iii. Shocks And Struts: The smoothness of your ride, especially on bumpy terrains is determined by the shocks and struts on your vehicle. Check them at 50 thousand miles.

  1. Coolant System: To prevent your vehicle overheating, your radiator has to be flushed sometimes.
  2. Battery Performance: This sends power to the starter and can corrode during harsh temperatures. It must be tested annually to check its power level.

CHANGE TIRES

Driving conditions differ, depending on where you live. Road conditions, the way you drive and especially winter conditions, can destroy your vehicle tires. It’s important to let a professional help you decide what tires are perfect for the conditions that you operate the vehicle under.

UP TO DATE INSURANCE AND DOCUMENTS

You can’t maintain a car that you don’t have. Make sure to buy comprehensive car insurance to cover everyone you come in contact with. In addition, without insurance, you can be arrested and possibly face hefty fines. Ensure that you and your loved ones are protected. Having the paperwork for your vehicle saves you time during police spot checks and other situations requiring them.

STICK TO THE SCHEDULE

Sticking to the schedule you set up is essential to addressing all the maintenance issues that may arise. Keep all maintenance records, so you won’t have to repeat work that was already done, and prevent costly repairs, or any surprises. Both you and your vehicle depend on each other; take care of it and it will certainly take care of you.

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7 Reasons Why Buying An SUV Makes More Sense

If you’re on the fence about buying an SUV or a sedan, you have many options to consider. Both car types have their benefits, but purchasing an SUV makes much more sense in the long run. From durability to hauling cargo, an SUV is built to last and can withstand almost anything. Find the seven reasons why buying an SUV makes more sense than buying a sedan. 

Hauling Cargo

You have much more space to haul cargo in an SUV than in a sedan. It’s for obvious reasons that SUV’s are just far bigger in space and size than any sedan. For this reason, you might save yourself money renting a U-Haul to move all of your child’s stuff into their college dorm because it might all fit in your SUV. Additionally, it’s much more effective when hauling bigger things like boats. You can haul a boat almost anywhere because an SUV is so powerful, where a sedan won’t be able to accomplish as much.

Leg Room

If you need to have a lot of legroom when you’re riding in a car, then an SUV is the obvious choice compared to a sedan. SUV’s destroy sedan’s when it comes to passenger space. Even if you’re travelling with four or five people, all of you will be able to sit comfortably in an SUV. Compared to a sedan where four of five people will be squashed.

Safety

The majority of SUV’s are much safer than any sedan. This is because SUV’s are bigger and higher off the ground. Since they’re bigger, they can endure more impact in a car crash. Also, the higher off the ground a car is, the further away from a crash the passengers are. The crash might happen at your tire level, but since you’re sitting much higher in an SUV, your chances of coming out without an injury are high.

Increased Driving Vision

Since SUV’s are higher off of the ground, you’ll be able to see better in traffic. You can see over most sedan’s or other vehicles to make the best decisions while driving. This can be crucial to newer drivers or more inexperienced drivers. Being able to see exactly what is happening on the road can increase good decisions while driving. 

Good Mileage

It’s a common misconception that SUVs don’t get as good of mileage compared to sedans. This is wrong. Especially in a new SUV range of mileage is almost as much as most sedans. Hence, you don’t need to worry about filling up every week when your SUV gets just as good of mileage as any other car on the road. This is the power of better technology in our cars today, better mileage for even bigger vehicles. 

More Power

It takes a lot of power for an engine to push an SUV down the road. These vehicles are packed with horsepower and torque. If you’re a big fan of having a really powerful car that can drive up to any hill, you’ll want to consider buying an SUV.

Built For All Terrain

Most SUV’s can handle many different types of terrain compared to sedans. This means mountains, deserts and anything else you can think of that might seem like a challenge. It’s because their tires are usually bigger and their engines are definitely more powerful than any sedan. If you’re a big fan of going off-roading and adventuring, then you’ll want to purchase an SUV over any sedan. Also, there’s much more room for your camping supplies in the trunk of an SUV. 

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3 Ways to Lessen Odds of a Car Accident

No one wants to get into a car accident. Well, this would be no sane person or one with good intentions that is.

That said getting in a car accident can be problematic on many fronts.

With that in mind, how can you go about lessening the odds of a car accident in your world?

Don’t Let a Car Accident Change Your Life

So that you can lower the odds of being the next car accident victim, keep these things in mind:

  1. Be focused on the road around you – It is critical that you focus on the road around you. For starters, you can’t afford to let distractions get the better of you. One of the biggest distractions out there is when drivers spend time on their cell phones. Always remember that a call or text can wait. No call or text is worth potentially ending your life. You also want to avoid things like personal grooming when at the wheel. Fixing your hair in the rear-view mirror, using an electric razor to shave and more can lead you to an accident. Last, do not be tempted to get into any road rage incidents with other drivers. When you are focused on the road, you stand a much better chance of getting safely to your destination.
  2. Drive the best vehicle possible – How confident are you in your vehicle when it comes to keeping you safe? The right vehicle can keep you safer so that you do not worry all the time about accidents. If considering buying another vehicle, be sure to use the Internet to help you. You can go online and do a free vehicle history search of all the different cars and trucks out there. When you do this, you will be more educated on what is out there when it comes to safety rankings. As technology evolves, more safety features are being built into vehicles. With that you and other drivers and passengers stand to be safer. Always make sure you test-drive any vehicle you consider buying.
  3. Learn from any accident – Finally, make it a point to learn from any auto accident you have been in. Was there anything different you may have been able to do to avoid it in the first place? You may have not been obeying the rules of the road at the time. You might have been distracted when you got into an accident. Was your vehicle in the best shape possible to avoid an accident? These are but a few of the things you need to review. The hope is that you will be able to avoid any more auto accidents as time goes by.

Get Checked Out if in an Accident

In the event you are in an auto accident, be sure to get checked out.

Even what seems like a minor incident can have repercussions for you if you are not careful.

Some injuries may not show up right away. 

These can include concussions, internal injuries and more. By having a medical pro check you out, there is less chance you will have medical issues not long after.

In lessening your odds of a car accident, are you feeling confident out on the roads?

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Chevy Corvette Mass Air Flow Explained

Your Corvette needs ample air flow to show off its power and performance. If you have a damaged mass air flow sensor, or MAF sensor, it may affect the performance of your favorite sports car. Learn more about how an MAF sensor works and the signs of a bad MAF sensor. Enjoy affordable prices on OEM replacement parts for long-lasting maintenance.

How a Mass Air Flow Sensor Works

This key component in your electronic fuel injection system monitors and measures the air flow between your air filter and intake manifold. An MAF is critical to keeping an ideal balance of air and fuel in your Corvette.

An MAF sensor uses a heated wire to measure the amount of air entering the intake manifold. A small electronic heater keeps the wire warm. As air enters the manifold, it requires more electricity to keep the wire at a consistent temperature.

This increase in electricity is translated into a digital signal that is sent to your Corvette’s PCM, or powertrain control module. This signal is used to adjust the amount of fuel injected. A damaged MAF sensor affects a range of Chevy Corvette auto parts and can decrease the performance of your engine and automatic transmission.

Signs of a Damaged MAF Sensor

Don’t let a single sensor hold back your favorite sports car. Here are some signs that you may need to pick up a replacement sensor. Look for these parts online or at your nearest auto parts store for an easy DIY maintenance task.

First, a damaged MAF sensor will affect the ignition of your Corvette. Difficulty starting, turning over and any stalling issues are all linked to a faulty sensor. Once your engine does start, any hiccups, lean or rich idling or jerking accelerations can also be caused by this damaged sensor.

Some MAF issues may be subtle, while others make it difficult to start and safely operate your Corvette. An inefficient sensor can affect the horsepower and fuel economy of your car, so it’s important to replace it before continuing to drive.

Consider cleaning your mass air flow sensor before looking for a replacement. These tiny sensors can become contaminated with routine use. Remove the sensor and carefully clean it with rubbing alcohol. Use caution or you may damage the sensor. Be sure to disconnect the wiring. You may need to remove the hose clamps and intake tube to access the sensor.

If this doesn’t work, you’ll need to order a replacement sensor. Choose an MAF sensor that matches your make, model and year of vehicle for an efficient replacement. Replace your sensor using the same steps you used to remove it. Start up your Corvette and look for any signs of engine issues.

Where To Find a Replacement MAF Sensor

Search for affordable OEM replacement MAF sensors today at your local auto parts store. Shop online for Chevy Corvette oil filters, MAF sensors and other replacement parts for easy ordering and fast shipping. Replacing this key sensor restores the full power and optimal air/fuel ratio of your Corvette.

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Chevy K1500 Mass Air Flow Explained

For a long time, the K1500 was Chevrolet’s four-wheel-drive three-quarter-ton truck. However, it was discontinued in the U.S. in 2002 and replaced with the Silverado. So, if you own a K1500 and want to keep using it, you will need to maintain it. Some basics such as changing the Chevy K1500 oil filters are very easy. However, what should you do if you have a bad mass air flow sensor?

The Importance of Measuring Air Flow

Many people who drive cars and trucks have no idea what a mass air flow sensor is. Fortunately, the name somewhat says it all. It is a sensor in the air intake system that measures the mass of the air coming in.

This is important because your truck needs to be able to mix the right amount of air and fuel together in the engine. With the wrong mixture, it will not achieve optimal performance or fuel-efficiency. Furthermore, a bad mix causes unnecessary emissions. So, having a working MAF sensor is good for everyone.

How an MAF Sensor Works

The MAF sensor is essentially an electrical resistance meter connected to a wire. The wire portion extends into the air intake. As air flows through the system, it causes friction with the wire and heats the latter up.

Hot metal has greater electrical resistance than cold metal. So, the meter simply measures the resistance of the wire to calculate how much air is flowing through the intake.

The Symptoms of a Bad Mass Air Flow Sensor

If you have a bad MAF sensor, the problem will be noticeable very quickly. The most notable effect of this is that the vehicle may stall shortly after starting. It will also tend to have rough idling and acceleration under load. This is caused by the engine running either a too lean or too rich fuel/air mixture. In other words, there is not enough fuel mixed with the air or too much.

Another noticeable symptom is that the check engine light will illuminate. This is caused by a diagnostic trouble code being set by your vehicle’s on-board diagnostics. When you have a check engine light on, it indicates that there is a problem related to a system that can affect emissions. You can check these codes using an ODB-II reader on any vehicle built after 1996.

If the MAF sensor is the problem, it is typically best to simply replace it. There are many affordable options for these Chevy K1500 auto parts. However, they can also be repaired if you prefer to follow that option. Use a multimeter to find the part of the sensor that is faulty.

Maintain Your Chevy K1500

Keeping your Chevy K1500 running smoothly is easier when you know how to work on it yourself. From oil changes to repairs, you can do a lot of work yourself is you are willing to learn. With some basic tools and a little patience, the basics are easy to pick up. Even bigger jobs such as replacing the MAF sensor can be learned. From there, you can keep learning until you know your truck inside and out.

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5 Most Common Causes of Car Accidents

Thousands of people are killed every year as a result of car accidents. In many cases, the accident could have been entirely avoided by taking simple preventative measures. 

Whether you’re on a busy city road or cruising along in the country, usually car accidents are a result of the same reasons. Take a look at some of the most common causes of car accidents

Distracted Driving

A lot of people spend so much time in their cars that they start to become overconfident. As a result, they start multi-tasking allow their focus to stray from the road ahead of them.

Distracted driving can not only result in rear-end accidents but even tragic head-on collisions. When you’re driving, you shouldn’t be doing anything else besides looking at the road ahead of you. That means not doing your makeup, fiddling with the radio, or eating. Save those activities for when you’re at home or pulled over.

Speeding

One of the most common reasons for accidents is speeding. It’s important to always pay attention to the signs around you so that you’re aware of the limits. The speed limits are put in place for a reason. In some areas, it’s because there are children present, and in some cases, it’s because of dangerous curves ahead.

Don’t assume that you’re above the law, and the rules don’t apply to you. Even if you’re in a hurry to get to your destination, nothing is worth risking your life or someone else’s. Follow the speed limit at all times! 

Drunk Driving

It’s all too common of a scenario: Someone has a few drinks and is convinced that they’re fine to drive. The problem is that even though you may be certain that you’re in a condition to drive, you’re not in your best state of mind.

Even if you’re convinced, you’re only “buzzed,” alcohol impairs your ability to act quickly. If you need to brake suddenly, you may not be able to do so in time. You may also have impaired vision, which results in missing someone on the road.

Pay for a cab or arrange a designated driver to take you home if you’ve had more than the legal limit of alcohol. 

Texting

Somehow, people still haven’t learned yet that cell phones don’t belong anywhere near your body while driving. Cell phones result in tens of thousands of deaths a year. Put your phone away, where you can’t see or hear it.  

Yes, even when you’re at a red light or stop sign. You are not the exception to the rule! 

Weather

Whether it’s fog or rain, weather can make driving more difficult to do. Always keep a safe following distance and drive at a slower speed when in adverse weather conditions.

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3 Tips For Maintaining Your Vehicle To Avoid A Car Accident

While there can be any number of reasons for getting in a car accident, one of the most common reasons—and one that can generally be avoided—is poor maintenance of your vehicle. When your car isn’t properly maintained, you’re far more likely to have things break or go wrong while you’re driving, which could result in you getting into a bad car accident.

So to help keep this from happening to you, here are three tips for maintaining your vehicle to avoid a car accident

Make Visibility Your Priority

If you can’t see well when you’re driving, there’s a much higher chance that you’ll wind up missing something you should have seen coming or not being able to avoid problems on the road ahead of you. Because of this, it’s vital that you make visibility your top priority.

To help maintain your ability to see when you’re driving, Elizabeth Laiza King, a contributor to the Huffington Post, recommends that you keep a close eye on your windshield wipers. As soon as you notice them streaking or squeaking, it’s time to replace them. Additionally, make sure your headlights and taillights are always clean so that you can see where you’re going and others can see you as well. 

Get Your Brakes Checked

Being able to stop your car in much more important than being able to get from zero to 60 in just a few seconds. If your brakes aren’t working as well as they should be, it can be very difficult to react appropriately to a scary situation and ensure that you’re able to stop your vehicle from hitting something in the road.

According to Emily Delbridge, a contributor to The Balance, if you’ve been driving around with squealing brakes, or even if you just notice that your brakes have been feeling a little different lately, it’s a good idea to take your car into the shop and get your brakes inspected. Many mechanic shops will do a free brake inspection for you, which is much preferred to the alternative of realizing you need new brakes because you weren’t able to stop as shortly as you needed to. 

Keep An Eye On Your Tires

Driving around on reliable and well-maintained tires can make a world of difference when it comes to the safety of your car. Because your tires are how you connect with the ground beneath you, it’s wise to always keep an eye on your tires and how they are holding up.

To help you with this, Today.com recommends that you get your tires rotated every 5,000 to 7,000 miles so the wear is even on the tread, that you check your tire pressure on a regular basis to ensure it’s within the recommended range, and that you look at the tread and wear of your tires regularly. 

To ensure that you don’t wind up in a car accident due to a maintenance issue that should have been taken care of, consider using the tips mentioned above to get the right maintenance done on your car on a regular basis.

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3 Things To Try If You Start Feeling Sleepy While Driving

If you’ve ever been on a road trip, you know how exhausting it can be to spend all day in a car. But for many people, even being on shorter trips can have them fighting to stay awake behind the wheel, especially if they haven’t gotten much sleep.

The problem with this is that driving while you’re tired is just as dangerous as driving while you’re drunk. So while you might not think that anything bad could happen just because you’re a little drowsy behind the wheel, your chances for getting in a car accident greatly increase if you’re drowsy.

Luckily, if you are starting to feel sleepy, there are things you can do to get yourself to a more awake and alert state. To show you how this can be done, here are three things to try if you start feeling sleepy while driving

Switch Drivers

The best thing you can do if you start to feel tired while driving is to get out from behind the wheel. If you happen to be driving with another person capable of driving the car, the National Sleep Foundation recommends that you switch drivers for a while and allow yourself to rest. 

To keep yourself performing at your best, try to switch drivers every two hours or so. And when you’re not the one driving, see if you can take a little nap and recoup some of your energy before you take the wheel again. 

Pull Over And Take A Break

Sometimes, you won’t have the luxury of having another driver in the car with you who can give you a break when you need it. In situations such as this, the next best thing is to just pull over and take a break all on your own.

During this break, Dr. Mark Stibich, a contributor to Very Well Health, recommends that you get out of the car and stretch. By getting some movement and activity, you can help to wake your body up out of its lethargic state. And if you’re still feeling tired after moving around a bit, give yourself permission to take a 20-minute nap before heading out again. 

Get Yourself Talking

In some situations, people get tired while they’re driving simply because they’re bored. Especially if you’re solely focused on driving, you may find yourself getting in a bit of a trance.

If this happens to you, Brianna Steinhilber, a contributor to NBC News, suggests that you get yourself talking. When you have someone else in the car, strike up a conversation with them to get your mind a little more active. And if you’re in the car alone, call someone and ask them to help wake up your mind a bit. 

To help keep yourself and others safe when you’re behind the wheel, consider using the tips mentioned above to keep yourself from getting sleepy while you’re driving.

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3 Car Maintenance Tasks That Will Keep You Safer On The Road

While your driving habits and the conditions on the road have a lot to do with your safety when you’re behind the wheel, what many people don’t realize is that the extent that they upkeep and maintain their vehicle also has a huge impact on how safe they are on the road. When your car is in disrepair, it’s much easier for vital components to break or stop working properly, which could easily result in you getting into a car accident.

Because of this, it’s crucial that you spend some time learning about the most important car maintenance tasks that you should be doing on a regular and consistent basis in order to keep your car in good working order. To help you with this, here are three car maintenance tasks that will keep you safer on the road

Keep An Eye On Your Tires

Since your tires interact with both the body of your vehicle and the roads you drive on, it’s vital that you keep an eye on this very important part of your car.

According to Dan Collins, a contributor to CarBibles.com, part of keeping an eye on your tires means checking your tire pressure on a very regular basis. This can help you to avoid things like blowouts. In addition to your tire pressure, you should also ensure that your tires have enough tread and that you rotate your tires as outlined in your vehicle’s owner’s manual. 

Check Your Fluid Levels Regularly

Within your vehicle, there are various types of fluids that you need to ensure are always at the proper level if you want your car to function at its peak performance. 

While most people know that you need to get your oil changed regularly, many neglect to check the levels of the other fluids. According to Mark Huffman, a contributor to ConsumerAffairs.com, you should be checking the level of your coolant, transmission, wiper fluid and others as well. I

n many modern vehicles, you’ll often get an alert if any of your levels are off. But by making it a habit to manually check, you can be sure to notice any issues before they become big problems for you. 

Don’t Use Old Wiper Blades

The most important thing when you’re driving is being able to see the road and the objects around your vehicle. What can make this easier, especially during inclement weather, is having good wiper blades. But if your wiper blades are old or falling apart, it can drastically reduce your ability to see out of your windshield.

To ensure that this never becomes a problem for you, iDriveSafely.com recommends that you replace your wiper blades as soon as they start to streak or screech.

To help you stay safe while on the road, consider doing the maintenance tasks mentioned above on a regular basis.

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3 Tips For Dealing With The Other Driver Following A Car Accident

While being in a car accident in the first place isn’t ideal, the type of person you’re in a car accident with can easily make or break the situation. Although no one is ever happy or excited about damage to their property or to their physical bodies, being able to effectively communicate with the other driver can make the whole process of handling a car accident go much smoother.

To help ensure you’re able to have at least some kind of positive interaction between you and others involved in a car accident, here are three tips for successfully dealing with the other driver following a car accident

Do Your Best To Stay Calm

To get everything started off on the right foot, the best thing for you to do, according to iDriveSafely.com, is to try your best to stay calm.

Following a car accident, you’re likely feeling a lot of emotions. If you’re in an accident where people have been injured, seeking medical help is going to be your top priority. But if you’re in an accident where the only damage was done to property, your priority should now be handling the situation calmly and moving on to the next steps of getting this accident taken care of. 

Especially if the other driver of the car was shaken up or angry, you being able to remain calm and keep the situation from escalating can be extremely helpful for everyone involved. 

Don’t Admit Fault

As you try to get things taken care of and figured out after your car accident, you’re going to have to speak with the other driver. What’s important to remember, however, is that you don’t say anything to them that could be construed as you admitting fault for what happened.

According to Kevin Mercadante, a contributor to Money Under 30, it’s crucial to any potential investigation that you don’t lie but that you also don’t say anything that could be used against you during legal proceedings. Regardless of whether you think that accident was your fault or not, that ruling is really up to the police or insurance company to decide, not you. 

Get All The Relevant Information

Even with everything that’s going on after you get in a car accident, you’ve got to push your feelings aside and ensure that you’re able to get all the relevant information from any other people involved in your accident.

To help with this, Selene Yeager, a contributor to AARP, recommends that you try to get as much personal information about the driver and passengers as you can so that it’s easy for your insurance company to contact them later on. Additionally, if there were any witnesses to your accident, be sure you get their information as well, as this could be helpful to you during any investigation.

To help you be prepared the next time you get in a car accident, consider using the tips mentioned above to know what you should do when interacting with any other drivers involved in your collision.

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