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10 Tips for a Fun & Safe Summer Road Trip

10 Tips for a Fun & Safe Summer Road Trip

The summer road trip is right up there with baseball and apple pie.  It’s an iconic American undertaking that’s been memorialized in countless movies and songs, but it also probably has special associations for each one of us who remembers family car trips or hitting the road with friends as soon as we had the freedom to drive. As we gear up for summer, many are planning their routes and checking their tires in preparation to head out on the open road.  What’s important to remember is that safety and fun go hand in hand, so use this list to help you get ready for the perfect summer road trip. Tune-Up & Tunes Safety Tip #1: Tune Up You should  ... read more

Been In An Accident? Who Determines Fault?

Been In An Accident? Who Determines Fault?

When you have a car accident, the first thing you may say is that the accident wasn’t your fault. It's an instinct, which people looking back often don't understand. Unfortunately, the other driver or drivers probably say the same thing. Determining who is at fault in a car accident comes down to one thing: negligence. All drivers have a responsibility to obey traffic rules and not harm pedestrians or other drivers. Negligence is when a driver acts in a thoughtless or careless way that causes harm to someone else. For example, if the driver fails to stop for a red light or yield, he or she behaved in a careless or thoughtless manner. Who Determines Fault? The answer depends on if the cause is litigated or not. If the case goes to court, a judge or jury determines fault in the case. They are ... read more

Quick Car Cleaning Tips to Prep for Summer Road Trips

Quick Car Cleaning Tips to Prep for Summer Road Trips

Winter has finally waned, spring has sprung, and the passing of Memorial Day means summer road trips are just around the corner! If you haven't already done it, now is the time to prepare your car for the summer travel season with the yearly ‘spring cleaning’ ritual.     1. Give it a Bath. Winter was hard on both the exterior and interior of your vehicle, so be sure to give it a thorough wash to get the salt off of the outside. For the inside, just vacuuming may not be enough; power wash the floor mats to ensure all of the salt and winter dirt is gone. Salt removal is important to both the exterior and interior because it can cause scratching and marring as well as premature rusting. And while the topic has been hotly debated,  ... read more

Do you Understand "Auto"? How to Translate What Your Car is Telling You

Do you Understand "Auto"? How to Translate What Your Car is Telling You

Ignoring the warnings your car sends out could leave you stranded on the side of the road or with a costly repair bill. According to information released by State Farm Insurance, 77 % of the cars on the road currently need service. And ignoring a small service can lead to a more expensive fix later.  "The closer attention you pay to your vehicle, the more likely you are to detect small problems before they become bigger, more expensive problems," says Tony Molla, vice president of communications for the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE).  ... read more

Tire Safety: Check Your Tires for Wear and Tear

Tire Safety: Check Your Tires for Wear and Tear

It only takes a penny to see if your tires are worn or losing tread. Examining your tires for wear and tear, along with checking tire pressure and alignment, are essential to ensuring your vehicle’s safety on the road and helping to improve gas mileage and performance. The non-profit Car Care Council recommends that motorists be car care aware and check tire condition and pressure regularly. “The penny test is a simple, yet effective, way to check tire tread. If you see Lincoln’s head above the tread, you are ready for new tires,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Tires are critical to a vehicle’s handling and traction, and maintaining proper pressure is vitally important to vehicle safety. Underinflated tires are under stress and will wear unevenly, causing them to need to be replaced sooner. Routinely checking tire balance an ... read more

Do You Know What These Dashboard Safety Icons Mean?

Do You Know What These Dashboard Safety Icons Mean?

Ask a driver how to control the air conditioning in their vehicle and it’s a safe bet you'll get an answer. Ask that same driver to identify life-saving dashboard warning signals and the chance of a clear answer drops significantly. According to a recent survey conducted by Schrader International, a manufacturer of sensing and valve solutions, only four out of every ten drivers were unable to identify key dashboard warning icons. Now that summer is here and our road trip vacations are underway, it is more important than ever for drivers to be familiar with their vehicle and the systems put in place to warn them of potential danger. When viewing dashboard icons -- and depending on the car you drive,  ... read more

Good Practices For Today's Drivers

Good Practices For Today's Drivers

Driving is a daily task for most of us, and staying safe on the road is important. Your car is also likely one of your largest investments, so taking care of it should just be common sense. However, when you spend so much time in your car, it can be easy to overlook even the most basic safety and maintenance issues. These are great habits to get into so that your car will serve you well for years to come, and yet overlooking these simple tasks are some of the most common mistakes drivers make. Check Your Oil Frequently Everybody who drives knows that cars need an oil change from time to time. However, many drivers really neglect this fact. They know what needs to be done, but they don't do it. Why? While you might read that motor oil needs to be changed every 5,000 miles or so, the trut ... read more

Are you an infrequent driver? How should you maintain your car?

Are you an infrequent driver? How should you maintain your car?

A friend who doesn't drive her car much recently asked us if her car needs any different maintenance than one that is driven regularly. We reached to Tony Molla, the Vice President of Communications for the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, for advice. According to Tony, "there's actually not a lot different about maintenance on a vehicle that is only driven occasionally. Even a few hundred miles a month is enough driving to keep things like the battery charged and avoid any problems with parasitic energy drains from the accessories." “Your car is a machine,” Tony says, “and like any machine it needs regular maintenance to run properly. Following your o ... read more

Four Easy Ways to Go Green with Your Car

Four Easy Ways to Go Green with Your Car

Looking for ways to become more environmentally friendly with your car? Motorists can help protect the environment by following four simple steps from the non-profit Car Care Council. Follow a vehicle service schedule including steps like checking engine performance, keeping tires properly inflated, replacing air filters regularly, changing oil regularly and checking your gas cap. Routine maintenance helps reduce emissions and fuel consumption, saving money at the pump. Keep your current vehicle longer and limit the number of new cars you buy over the course of a lifetime. Extending vehicle life is as simple as taking care of your vehicle properly. You’ll gain years of reliable service without monthly car payments and higher insurance rates.Recycle or properly dispose motor oil, tires, bat ... read more

To Idle or Not to Idle, That is the Question

It is that time of the year when many motorists let their vehicle “warm up” or idle before driving. In fact, today’s modern cars are ready to drive in cold temperatures without excessive idling, says the Car Care Council. “Unless you are trying to defrost the windshield or warm the interior of your car, idling is not required for today’s vehicles,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “In most cases, idling longer than 30 seconds is unnecessary. The best way to warm up your car’s engine is to drive gently at the start. Remember, a vehicle gets zero miles per gallon when idling and the result is lower fuel economy and wasted money.” The idea of idling before driving dates back to when cars were built with carburetors. With new fuel-injection technology, complex computer systems and thinner synthetic oils, drivers don’t need to warm up their cars before hitting the road. According to the Environmental Protec ... read more