If you have already been on a road trip, you probably know what kind of preparation is necessary so that you can make the most of the experience. You may have been adequately prepared, or perhaps you realized at some point that you hadn’t really done everything you should have. If this is the case, you will probably never make the same mistake again.
On the other hand, if you have never been on a road trip or never had any problems with your car, you might require a check-list that will help you organize a trip with no hiccups. Every responsible driver needs to minimize the chances of their car breaking down due to poor maintenance, which is why it is a good idea to go through this list well before you embark on your trip.
Check the Cabin and Air Filters
The cabin and air filters get dirty and clogged quite easily, especially if most of your driving takes place in an area with polluted air. The fact that your filters are not functioning well does not only affect the quality of air in the cabin, but it also has an impact on engine performance. This, in turn, increases fuel consumption, which means your expenses increase.
How often you change the filters depends on many factors, but doing it at least once a year is a must. Naturally, if you drive a lot or plan to go on a longer trip, you should change them often. When it comes to the cabin filters, their primary role is to keep harmful substances away from the vehicle, thus helping the heat and air conditioning systems function correctly.
Check the Car Fluids
A road trip requires your car to be in excellent condition, so that it can sustain all the pressure that comes with driving for extended periods of time or in areas with extreme temperatures. To make sure your car can handle such a trip, you need to inspect car fluids, such as the engine coolant and various oils.
The coolant will prevent your car from overheating easily, while transmission fluid allows you to shift gears smoothly and without any problems. Brake fluid is vital, since it keeps the brakes in perfect condition, which is extremely important and can potentially save your life. Investing in top quality engine oil, such as any of the renowned Castrol oils, is always a smart idea, but make sure you get the right one for your car. Finally, windshield washer fluid is important in case of adverse weather conditions.
Check the Tires
The quality and state of your tires have a significant impact on safety. The hotter the weather, the harder the tires, which is why you need to choose the right kind for your road trip. Naturally, when the weather grows colder, the pressure can drop quickly, so be prepared to check tire pressure and refill the tires if necessary.
Another critical issue is the tread of your tires, because you need enough tread to have a safe ride. If you are not sure about the state of your tires, visit the nearest expert and have them checked. Tires are one of the most important elements when it comes to having a safe and trouble-free trip and you should confirm that you don’t need to replace them before the trip. It goes without saying that you should have a functioning spare tire and car jack with you inside the vehicle before leaving on a road trip.
Check the Car Battery
You can count on your car battery to last between three and six years, which means you need to know how long you have had the one currently in your car. If you don’t know how to check the state of your battery, visit the nearest auto mechanic.
If you’d like to clean your battery and help it run a bit longer, you can remove it and deal with any signs of corrosion. Just make sure that the battery is completely dry before you reattach the terminals.
Have an Emergency Kit
Having an emergency kit in your car is very necessary, especially if you are planning a long road trip. Such a kit needs to contain jumper cables, first aid supplies, car shades for parking in the sun or any other item that might help you deal with various emergencies.
You should also be aware that even though you have taken appropriate measures of precaution, some problems with your car still may occur. Your job is to minimize all possible risks so that you and your passengers will have a great time on your road trip.Looking for a professional to assess your car? Try using EZBZ, the free online concierge service. We’ll connect you with the best automotive professionals in your area. Download the app and try it out today - it’s free, quick, and easy.
While it has always been customary to travel in a luxury vehicle to important events - a limousine to your prom, a classic car to your wedding – these days, the event often is the vehicle. There are increasingly more extravagant options that are trending with party-goers across the country. If you’re considering taking a party on the road, here are some of your options:
Party buses have had an interesting evolution in recent years. I still remember the bus my parents hired six years ago for my brother’s 21st birthday party to take him and his friends on his first bar crawl. It wasn’t designed to host a party – it was an old school bus - but that didn’t stop them from celebrating for the entire drive.
These days, you can hire buses better suited for celebration. Party buses often have a luxury interior with leather couches, champagne holsters, and large flat screen TVs. Not to mention they often have their own bathroom, which is a necessity for any party, even one on wheels.
A Humvee or Hummer is a brand of SUV truck that has been around since the early 1990s. They are renowned for their large cubic frames and modern design. There is also a range of Hummer limousines that are catered for transportation of parties of 10-15 people. These vehicles often have luxury interiors that include disco lighting, leather seating, and a heavy duty sound system. As a larger vehicle with an industrious design, they feel safer than your average stretch limousine, and are quickly becoming the first choice for younger generations looking to arrive at their prom in style.
Luxury Car or Traditional Limousine
For smaller parties, it’s hard to go wrong with the more traditional choice of a luxury car or limousine. You may not be able to watch TV with thirteen of your closest friends in the back of a 1935 Cadillac, but it’s hard not to feel suave as you sip champagne with your significant other in the back seat of a classic car. There is a beautiful, vintage design to these vehicles that the more recent alternatives – like the Hummer – seem to lack, and that’s why this option is the original, and the best.
If you’re looking for a luxury or extravagant vehicle to take you to your next event, consider submitting a request on www.myezbz.com/category/party-vehicles. EZBZ is the fastest and easiest way to see the party vehicle options in your area, and help your party on wheels take off.
There is never really a situation that can compare to the frustration one experiences when their car suffers significant water damage. Whether the car has been caught in flood waters or experienced flooding due to a faulty equipment or windows left ajar doesn’t really matter. Once the damage is done it’s a matter of severity and whether or not it can be repairs within any reasonable budget.
With the majority of car systems relying upon electronics, a flooded automobile converts an otherwise useful machine into a piece of junk, unless expediently repaired. Perhaps hardest for some people to grasp is the fact that a flooded vehicle isn’t simply a matter of letting the water dry out and then getting a thorough detailing. Often times, it requires a partial or full dismantle of the car’s interior and replacement of many damaged components.
There are automotive professionals who specialize in water damage repair. Typically it’s a person or team who is capable of mechanical repairs as well as interior related ones. Often times it is an auto body shop who is skilled at pulling door panels, dashboards, etc. apart to repair the damage done by a typical accident. With the proper trained specialist you are assured of getting your car back to an optimum state. They know what to do in cases where a car has been hydro-locked; attend to issues dealing with transmission and engine fluids that have been flooded; and get electronics systems back in great working order. Of course, they will also attend to the numerous cosmetic repairs that arise.
The amount of time it will take to repair a water damaged vehicle depends heavily on the amount of damage the vehicle suffered. Items such as dealing with rust, mold, mildew and the likes in the car interior and exterior take time. At the very least the process of removing the seats, carpeting and manually drying out the parts bit by bit is extremely time consuming and enough to make anyone frustrated. Add to this the need to assess and repair mechanical issues and you and imagine the time such a restoration wll take. Often the action of draining, flushing and refilling of systems in order to test their integrity can take a day or more and that’s not even doing the repair or assessing any secondary damage. Patience when dealing with this type of repair is key!
Scratches and dents on a car can cost hundreds of dollars to repair. That is why many auto owners just accept them when they find their car banged up in a parking lot. Now, dents can be repaired without repainting, giving auto owners an affordable way to regain the pride they once had in their car.
Paintless dent removal is a technology used commercially by auto dealerships, rental companies and auctions to improve a car overall appearance without the need for expensive body and paint work quickly. Although consumers have been slow to accept this new concept, evidence shows that consumer use of this removal service is on the rise.
How it Works:
The tools designed especially for this type of dent removal can remove football-sized dents in a car without requiring any expensive sanding, filling or painting. Cars that have been repaired like this normally have no visible evidence that they ever experienced damage.
The availability of inexpensive remedies for dents in automobiles has the potential to create an influx of consumer demand. After all, the main reason drivers do not repair dents in their cars is the expense. Drivers are also unwilling to file a claim on their auto insurance for fear their premium will increase. Some auto insurers are now embracing this as an accepted method of repair.
Modern automobiles have strong metal and flexible paint surfaces that make them less susceptible to a damaged finish when they receive impact. This means that dents can be pushed back out, allowing the metal to pop back into place. As tools have improved, this method has developed in ways that allow larger dents to be repaired. Not too long ago, this technique was limited to smaller dents like those caused by hail.
Paintless dent removal is preferred for several reasons. First the technique can repair dents that range from small to large. Not every dent can be repaired this way, but many dents can be repaired with paintless dent removal, saving vehicle owners hundreds of dollars for every dent. Also, only newer cars have metal and paint that can be adequately repaired using paintless dent removal. For the most part, these are cars from 1990 and later model years.
Many dents cannot be repaired using paintless dent removal. For example, if the paint is cracked or broken, traditional bodywork might be necessary. Also, dents located near the edge of body panels often cannot be treated. Finally, dents on repaired bodywork usually do not respond well to paintless dent removal.
Cost, speed and low risk are among the key benefits of paintless dent removal. Same day service, on-site repair and speedy repair are more reasons why people will choose paintless dent removal when they wouldn't even think about taking their car to a body shop for repair.
Paintless dent removal avoids in-shop risks such as paint overspray and paints mismatching because no painting is required. Also, this type of repair also preserves the resale value of a car because buyers often frown on cars that don't have their original paint.If you're interested in finding an auto body shop that specializes in paintless dent repair, you can always submit a request via www.myezbz.com.
Photo credit by: MarcelClemens / Shutterstock.com
Many drivers are enticed by the fine design lines, incredible engineering and power of sports cars. Automotive enthusiasts are born out of any number of places – from playing with Matchbox cars as a child, seeing stunt scenes in movies, accompanying someone to a racetrack and visiting a car show with friends, to watching motorsports on television. One thing many enthusiasts have in common is a desire, or at minimum a curiosity, to learn first-hand what it would be like to drive a sports car at the speed and manner they were designed for. Luckily, wealthy hobbyists have paved the way for the general public to be able to partake in this luxury. Although, a lot of enthusiasts remain unaware of the options to get behind the wheel of an exotic sports car, or to press the gas pedal down on a racetrack.
For those who are curious what it would be like to drive a Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche or other luxury sports vehicle, there are a few options. One of easiest ways to accomplish this goal is by pursuing a daily rental. Believe it or not, in major cities even the most common rental agencies have a foot in the exotic car rental business. There are also a number of smaller agencies, private owners and clubs that provide rental and car share possibilities. I’ve seen prices start at around $200 and range up to $2000 depending on how exotic the vehicle is.
In addition to the above, there are exotic car driving experiences that generally include driving a minimum of three different vehicles either on a racetrack, or on a road course. These types of packages make great gifts to celebrate life events as they are special, yet still within reach for many people when considering a special occasion. I’ve even seen these for sale on deal sites like Groupon and Living Social.
If that doesn’t satisfy your appetite or tempt you enough, there are open track days at professional racetracks across the United States, as well as driving schools any person of appropriate age and health can attend; there are even car clubs that support enthusiasts’ interests in particular automotive brands.
My first exposure to the racetrack came with Porsche and their popular World Roadshow, an exciting driver’s experience that is also an incredibly well thought out marketing event. As an automotive enthusiast who has frequented car shows and socialized with a mix of collectors, I received an invite to the Roadshow from a Porsche dealer. It was a great experience held at Monticello Motor Club and I was quickly hooked! Well played Porsche, well played…
From that first introduction, I became even more interested in pursuing on-track driving experiences. This led me to enthusiast focused driving clubs like the Sports Club Driving Association (SCDA), Porsche Club of America, BMW Car Club of America and others who rent track time and provide open track days to their members. The premise of each of these associations and clubs is simple: Learn to drive on the racetrack, in your own car, and maybe even compete against similar minded and skilled enthusiasts in special amateur racing events. Within each club you have access to driving instructors who will help you bring your skills to the next level. If interested in accelerating the learning, there is always high performance driving schools like Skip Barber, Bondurant and Porsche Sport Driving School among others. At each of these schools, which have become institutions in the world of auto enthusiasts, drivers can test their skills on a range of vehicles while on the skid pad, autocross and with hot laps around professional racetracks.
There is no right or wrong answer as to which experience to start with. The only important consideration is to be wise when making a decision, both for skill level and financial commitment to the experience.
If you ignore your tires and let them stay in the same position for years, you are bound to notice some tires wearing out quicker than others. To make things worse, some of the treads on individual tires are likely to wear out unevenly either on the inside or the outside. As a result, weight wont be properly distributed on all four tires. The tires situated near the engine area of the car, typically bear the heaviest weight. Specialists in the EZBZ network who perform auto repair note that front tires, typically the ones neares the engine, also handle all steering done by the driver. Additionlly, when brakes are applied, the entire weight of a car tends to shift forward.
EZBZ experts who do auto repair also advise that uneven tire weat can be indication of certain mechanical problems. For instance, tires that are improperly aligned usually drag, resulting in uneven wear. Worn out suspension parts are likely to alter weight distribution especially during cornering, thereby contributing to uneven wear. Improperly inflated tires are also more likely to wear unevenly, they can also contribute to reduced gas mileage.
Although it can be a little difficult to constantly check tire treads, professionals who specialize in auto repair advice that newer tires are generally fitted with some visual reminders of tread status. Once you have purchased a new set of tires, tread bar indicators are usually not visible. However, as they wear out, bars start appearing and become visible. Therefore, if you notice any tire that has bars before the others, the time might be right to do tire rotation.
Moving tires to different wheel locations is essential, as it extends the life of each and ensures all wear on relatively the same schedule. Experts who perform auto repair advise owners of automobiles never to overlook the aspect of tire rotation. Just a couple of minutes spent doing tire maintenance procedures can ensure tires wear out evenly thus improving handling and general performance. If your car tires exhibit any of the telltale signs discussed above, then it is time to do tire rotation. You can contact your preferred auto repair shop for additional information regarding tire rotation and replacement.
If you need assistance with finding a skilled mechanic or tire reseller, consider submitting a request to www.myezbz.com