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Easy Car Maintenance Hacks

12 Easy Car Maintenance Hacks

For many of us, it would be impossible to imagine modern life without cars. We use them for our daily commutes, for shopping and groceries, and even for long trips across the country. Of course, to keep the car running optimally requires you to take proper care of it. While some maintenance tasks are best left to the mechanic to work on, there are lots of DIY cleaning and maintenance solutions you can easily perform yourself to keep your car in good order.

Here is our compilation of 12 easy car maintenance hacks that
you can do self at your garage, saving money and time in the process.

1. Use Nail Polish to Fix Minor Scratches

Nothing can be more jarring than seeing scratches appear on your brand-new car. Unfortunately, no matter how careful you are with your car, you cannot safeguard its paint from the risk of scratches. Fortunately, for minor ones, there is a quick fix – simply select a nail polish of the same color as your car paint and use it to remove any insightful blemishes.

2. Use a Plunger to Remove Dents

A plunger isn’t just useful for unclogging a drain but can also help with fixing small to medium-sized dents on your car’s exterior. Simply splash some water on both the dent and the plunger and start pushing and pulling on the handle until the dent pops out.

WE FIX DENTS FAST. PAINTLESS DENT REPAIR

3. Use a Razor Blade to Clean Your Windshield

Windshield glass is designed to be tough. Using a razor blade to remove grime and gunk on its surface is unlikely to create scratches on it but really works wonders if you’re looking to clean your windshield. For the best results, be sure to properly lubricate the glass with soap and water before working on it with the razor blade.

4. Use Olive Oil to Clean the Interior

Olive oil isn’t just a healthy alternative to conventional cooking oil but also a very effective cleaning agent. It can help loosen stains, grime, and dirt off of surfaces, making them a breeze to clean. To clean your car’s interior with olive oil, simply dab a microfiber towel with it and start rubbing the surfaces.

5. Use Toothpaste to Clean Headlights

The same abrasive action of a toothpaste that helps remove dental plaque and stains can also work wonders in other cleaning applications, including cleaning headlights. Over time, the plastic on the headlights can start to become yellowed and foggy. To make them appear as good as new, apply some toothpaste on the surface with a firm toothbrush and start cleaning. Wipe the paste away with a clean cloth and be surprised at the stunning results!

6. Use Clear Nail Polish to Fix Minor Windshield Cracks

Unless you address the problem quickly, those minor cracks that see emerging on your windshield can spread over time and significantly compromise the glass’s integrity. To prevent the problem from becoming worse, fix it by applying clear nail polish on both sides of the cracks.

7.  Use Hand Sanitizer to Open a Frozen Lock Quickly

It’s a chilly January morning, and you are ready to go to work. However, when you step outside, you come to the horrible realization that your car’s locks have frozen. You spent the next 20 or so minutes in the cold unsuccessfully trying to unlock the vehicle before deciding to take an Uber instead.

To avoid such predicaments in the future, simply put a dash of hand sanitizer on the lock. The alcohol present in the solution will cause the ice to thaw out, allowing you to unlock your vehicle. With that said, avoid substituting it with stronger alcoholic liquids as they may damage the car paint.

8. Use Pool Noodles to Protect Your Car Doors

If space is tight in your garage, there is always the risk, especially when you are in a hurry, of accidentally damaging your car doors when you open them. To avoid getting unsightly dings and dents, cut pool noodles in half and attach them lengthwise to the garage walls so that your car doors always hit something soft instead of a hard surface when you are not careful.

9. Keep a Pair of Stockings for Car Emergencies

As with any car part, a timing belt over time will wear out, and thus, will need replacing. If you have been neglectful of this essential maintenance task, there is the risk of the timing belt breaking off, and you can suddenly end up with a non-working engine.

If you are unlucky enough to get stuck in such a situation and there is no mechanic for miles, you can make use of a pair of stockings to serve as a temporary replacement for your timing belt. Being strong yet flexible, the garment may just be versatile enough to keep your car engine going until you reach your nearest mechanic.

Stockings could also be useful in case you forget to replace your old damaged wiper blades before the start of the rainy season. Wrapping the stockings around the blades can help prevent them from scratching your windshield and make them more effective at wicking away the rainwater.

10. Use Coca Cola to Remove Rust

WD-40 works wonders when it comes to removing rust, but in case you have run out of it but still need to give your car a shine-up in a pinch, you can use Coca Cola as a good substitute. The soft drink is quite acidic, and thus, can really help loosen the rust over the surface, making it easier to clean off. By extension, you can also use it to clear any corrosion on your car battery and cables. Just be mindful not to spill it over your car paint.

11. Use Hair Conditioner to Shine Your Car

There is no need to purchase any expensive agents to keep your car’s surface shiny and new; simply use your hair conditioner instead. After giving your car a good cleaning, cover it entirely with a mixed solution of 4-part water and 1-part hair conditioner. Give it a rinse afterward, dry the surface with a towel, and marvel at your gleaming results.

12. Clean Hard to Reach Spots with a Cloth and a Screwdriver

Trying to clear out dirt, gunk, and grime from the nook and crannies of your car can be a very frustrating affair. Fortunately, an easy method to reach them better is to simply wrap a thin cleaning cloth around a long screwdriver and utilize it for the purpose.

Over to You

Which of these easy car maintenance hacks did you like the most? Know of any hacks that you would like to share? Tell us about it and more in the comments below. Don’t forget to share this article with others if you found it to be a worthwhile read.

Important Car Care Tips for Rainy Weather

9 Important Car Care Tips for Rainy Weather

Rain is not something that you want your car to be exposed for long periods. However, to stop driving altogether during the rainy season is definitely not a viable option. Normal rainwater is slightly acidic, but around areas with considerable human activity, rainwater can have a pH as low as 4.2, making it a corrosive agent. However, there are some measures you can take to better protect your car from the weather.

Here are 9 important car care
tips for rainy weather
.

1. Give Your Car a Good Waxing

Before the rainy season starts, consider it a worthwhile investment to have your car washed and waxed. Waxing the car forms a protective coating on the car’s exposed surface and can prevent rainwater from sticking onto it for prolonged periods, reducing the risk of rust and water spots. In addition, it will also help prevent your exterior paint from losing its sheen with age.

2. Run Your Air Conditioning System

When it rains, the air is more moisture-rich. The temperature difference between that of the inside of your car and that of the outside can cause moisture to condense on your car’s windows and windshield. In the rain, where visibility is already greatly reduced, this can add to the dangers while driving. Consider running your air conditioning system to prevent this from occurring.

3. Check the Tires

The grooves on your car’s tires help expel water away from beneath their treads to ensure that adequate traction is maintained between them and the road surface. Older and excessively worn-out tires tend to have shallower grooves, and hence, put your car more at risk of slipping uncontrollably on a wet surface or can even cause damage to its intricate suspension and steering systems.

To determine whether your tires might need replacement, place a penny (Lincoln’s head first) into groves at various points on the tires. If Lincoln’s head remains covered by the tread, your tires are perfectly fine. Otherwise, they will need replacement. Be sure to also check on the pressure of the tires and have them inflated to the recommended levels if required.

4. Check Your Wipers

Over time, your car’s wiper blades will become dry, brittle, and cracked and will no longer be making proper contact with the windshield surface. Worn-out wipers can leave distracting smears, skips, and streaks as they move across the glass, reducing driving visibility.

As a best practice, you should consider having your wiper blades replaced every 6 to 12 months, depending on the local weather and how frequent their usage is. When purchasing a new set, be sure to bring the originals to ensure you buy ones that are of the right length and have the correct connector clips.

5. Inspect Seals

The rubber seals around the doors, windows, hood, and trunk help keep the water from leaking into your car’s interior. However, as they degrade with time, they start to come lose and make your car more susceptible to leakage. Before the rainy season begins, make sure to have these seals inspected properly and do any repair work or replacements if necessary. Also, be sure to grease the door hinges to make them completely watertight.

6. Wash and Dry Your Car After It Has Rained

Don’t fall into the wrong impression that rain does a fine job of washing your car. If your car came in prolonged contact with rainwater, while driving or leaving it parked out in the open, you should promptly give it a wash and dry it with a towel once the rain stops. As mentioned, rain can be corrosive, and thus, you don’t want to have it sit on the car for a long time.
Furthermore, rainwater can contain various mineral and dirt deposits. Once the water evaporates, the deposits are left behind in the form of water spots and stains, which can be very difficult to get rid of on your own.

While washing the car, ensure that you don’t neglect its underside. This area is especially vulnerable to the accumulation of mud, road grime, and dirt when it rains. Unless you want to risk corrosion, have the underside properly cleaned and greased afterward.

7. Inspect the Electrical Wiring

Water and electricity don’t make for a good combination. Any exposed or improper wiring has a high risk of shorting when it rains, creating a safety hazard for your and other car occupants. Open the car’s hood and check the condition of the wiring. If you see any wires and cables improperly fitted or with insulation peeling off or showing signs of corrosion, have them replaced as soon as possible.

8. Check Your Brakes

A well-maintained car braking system is important, especially on wet roads where the braking distances are often longer. You should have your braking system inspected by professionals periodically so you know when to have its components repaired or replaced.

9. Battery Checkup

Imagine the scenario where it is raining heavily while you’re driving and your battery malfunctions. The majority of battery problems tend to occur during the rainy season. Have your battery checked beforehand by a professional to make sure that it is in proper working order or have it replaced with a new one if necessary. Be sure to also have the cable connectors inspected for rust or any other signs of corrosion.

Schedule Your Service with Us Today

A quick and hassle-free way to spot and fix many of the above-mentioned points is to send your car for pre-season servicing. PA Auto Inspection is a premier auto service located in Philadelphia. We offer full-scale vehicle maintenance and inspection service with a promise of quality, convenience, comfort, and excellence. To schedule your car service today, call (215) 259-7500.

How to Improve Your Car’s AC Performance

How to Improve Your Car’s AC Performance – 9 Tips

Many of us, especially those living in the south, simply can’t imagine driving our cars without an air conditioner at most times of the year. In hot weather, air conditioning doesn’t just aid in our comfort; it is necessary to prevent the risk of heat-related illnesses such as heat exhaustion and heatstroke.

With this in mind, there are measures you can take to improve the cooling effectiveness of your car’s air conditioning system, reduce its fuel consumption, and reduce the chances of its breakdown.

Here are 9 tips on how to
improve your car’s AC performance.

1. Start the AC While Driving

A lot of people tend to start their AC before driving. However, doing so can be a wastage of both time and fuel. Your car’s AC operates much more efficiently while driving as the compressor is able to run faster with the rotation of the engine’s crankshaft. Opening up the car’s door and sunroof to get rid of the hot air inside before you start driving can also allow the car to cool faster.

2. Window Shades

The less sunshine enters your car’s interior, the less the AC will have to work to keep its temperature cool. While the glass on modern cars is effective at blocking out UV and most infrared light, it still does little to protect against visible light. As it penetrates through the glass, it is converted into infrared light, and thus, gets trapped inside, heating up the interior.

Installing window shades can be a very affordable means to limit the amount of heat buildup. Of course, before going out to the market for window shades, be sure to check in with your local laws to ensure the ones you are buying aren’t illegal in your jurisdiction.

3. Inspect the Refrigerant

Extensive use of the car’s air conditioner can lead to a gradual decrease in the system’s refrigerant, primarily through leakage. Any refrigerant shortage within the air conditioning system can lead to poorer performance, especially when the temperatures are high. Consider having it checked every 6 to 12 months to ensure that it is at an optimal level and that there isn’t any leakage in the system.

4. Keep the AC Condenser Clean

An AC condenser is usually located right in the front of the car, just behind the grill. It is a component responsible for re-cooling the AC’s refrigerant by expelling the excess heat into the passing airflow. However, dirt and debris can pile up and clog the path of airflow, leading to much-reduced cooling efficiency. Be sure to have it periodically inspected and cleaned so that it can function optimally.

5. Inspect the AC Filter

Worn-out, dirty air filters tend to be one of the biggest causes behind the breakdown of your car’s air conditioning system. As the name implies, they filter out foreign objects such as dust, dirt, and pollen from being pulled into the system. Over time, they can get clogged up, and thus, require periodic replacement.

Not replacing your car’s old air filters means that the air conditioning system has to work harder to push the air through, increasing its fuel consumption and leading to reduced cooling performance.

6. Switch the AC to Recirculation Mode

Often it might be more efficient to switch your AC to recirculation mode instead of letting it cool air from the outside, especially when the said outside air is above 100 F. When you start driving, roll down the car’s windows for a few minutes and turn the AC control to fresh air mode, letting the hot, stagnant air escape to the outside. If there is a sunroof installed, be sure to open it as well. Since hot air rises, this can help vent it out of the car much faster. Afterward, close the windows and switch the AC to recirculation mode.

7. Install an AC Curtain

On larger SUVs, Minivans, and MUVs, it might be wasteful to have the entirety of its interior cooled when there are only a few occupants. Installing an AC Curtain can cut the area inside that needs to be cooled, allowing you to achieve a comfortable temperature much more quickly.

8. Park Smartly

Whenever possible, try to keep your car parked in the shade. Since the majority of the heat that enters the car tends to be in the form of radiation, keeping it always from direct sunlight can mean a temperature difference of as much as 30 degrees.

In case you can’t find any shade to park your car in, another step you can take is to open your parked car’s windows slightly provided there are no risks associated with it at the given location. Allowing air to circulate through the car can help its interior doesn’t get as hot as it would have otherwise.

9. Have Your Car Serviced

Be it any machine, they perform their best when they are well-maintained. To keep your car’s air conditioning system working optimally, be sure to have the car inspected and serviced on a regular interval by professionals. They will test to see if all its various components and hoses are operating properly, check them any leaks and damage, and have them repaired or replaced if necessary.

Since demand tends to peak during the summer months, it is better to have the car service before so that you can take advantage of reduced pricing and lower waiting time.

Concluding Note

No matter how hot the temperature outside, by following these tips, you will be able to ensure that your car’s interior will stay cool no matter what. In addition, in the long run, you will add to your saving by having to pay less in fuel as well as in repairs or part replacements related to the car’s air conditioning system. If you found the content of this article to be helpful, be sure to share it with others who may also find it useful.

A car with an overheated engine

8 Reasons Why Your Car May Overheat

A vehicle overheating can be troublesome, especially if you are in a hurry. You will have to park your car on the side of the road and give it time to cool off before you can get to your destination. Summer season and traffic jams, in particular, can be very taxing for your car and you.

Prepare yourself and your vehicle for the hot weather by asking yourself what makes your car overheat. Here we outline eight possible reasons to help you identify the cause of your car overheating. But before we dive into those, here’s what you need to do the minute you see the temperature gauge shoot up to stop the car from overheating further as that can be dangerous.

Precautionary Measures

  • The first thing you need to do is turn off the air conditioner. Doing so is particularly important, especially if you are stuck in a traffic jam.
  • Pro Tip – turn on your defroster and turn the heat on high. You are definitely going to feel more than the summer heat, but your car will cool down.
  • Try to get coolant circulating. Put your vehicle gear to park or neutral and pump the gas pedal just a little. You are revving the engine up to encourage circulation to cool it down.
  • If you are on the freeway or the highway, then put your car in the lowest gear and slow down your speed as much as you can. Search for a nice spot to pull over. You can open the hood of the car and let the engine air out. Don’t touch anything as it is bound to be really hot to the touch.
  • It’s best if you can call a tow truck. If you can’t, then make sure the car cools down entirely before you restart it or the engine may seize.

If the vehicle begins to heat up again, you should stop driving and have it towed to a nearby mechanic to save the car from thousands of dollars’ worth of damage. You can save a lot of money by identifying what makes your car overheat, and here are eight possible problem areas you should look into.

1. Cooling System Leak

A small leak, when unidentified for long enough, can cost you a lot of money in just a few days. They are also often the main reason why your car may be overheating. Make sure you check for a leak in the coolant system, the radiator, the water pump, and thermostat. If you do find one, then get it checked and repaired immediately.

2. Low Coolant Concentration

If you stay on top of your regular vehicle maintenance routine, then your auto repair company probably makes sure that the vehicle has adequate coolant. If your car is overheating despite regular maintenance, then you should get the coolant checked.

Sometimes, the wrong coolant choice or an unbalanced mixture of coolant and distilled water can cause the car to overheat. An incorrect combination can also turn the coolant into a corrosive agent and substantially damage the vehicle’s parts.

3. Check the Radiator

Blockage, leakage, or damage to the radiator can hinder its functioning. Because it plays a central role in the cooling of the vehicle’s engine, a malfunctioning radiator often becomes the main reason for what makes your car overheat. Your radiator should be in optimal condition all the time, so do check on it from time to time.

4. Broken Thermostat

The thermostat is another central component in the coolant system. It is what detects the temperature and allows the coolant to pass through when the car starts to heat up. A broken thermostat means the coolant never makes it through, and the engine continues to burn without anything to help it cool down.

For the vehicle to operate optimally, the engine must not be allowed to overheat for elongated periods. It can cause severe damage to the vehicle and turn into a big problem.

5. Burst Hose

The hoses transport the coolant to the engine, allowing it to cool the vehicle down. However, if the hose is broken or damaged, the cooling agent never makes it to the engine. It leaks out and disrupts the vehicle’s coolant circulation system, causing the engine to overheat.

6. Broken Radiator Fan

The job of the radiator fan is to circulate air around the coolant to reduce its temperature so it can continue to cool down the engine. However, a broken fan cannot circulate air efficiently, allowing the coolant to heat up and renders it unable to cool the engine down.

7. Water Pump

The water pump operates as the heart of the coolant system. Much like the human heart pumps blood to the body, the water pump generates pressure to push the cooling agent through the coolant circulation system.

A broken pump fails to generate enough pressure for the coolant to reach the engine, which can cause the vehicle temperature to rise. Your vehicle’s pump can easily get damaged due to corrosion, so you should get it checked regularly.

8. Broken Belts

Broken or loose belts hinder the overall mechanism of the car. They can cause the vehicle to overheat in multiple ways. Not only can they create friction, which generates excess heat. A broken belt in the coolant system also renders the whole cooling system inefficient and overheats the vehicle.

Ideally, you should get your vehicle checked at the very first sign of it overheating. Do not wait for it to blow smoke out of the hood before you pay attention to your vehicle. You will have to be extra careful with your car’s maintenance if it is over five years old. Here are a few other tips you can use to prevent your vehicle from overheating.

Tips to Prevent Your Car from Overheating

  • If your car is a little aged and has a history of heating up during summers, here’s what you can do to save it from burning up.
  • Park your car in the shade and not under direct sunlight. It helps keep the engine at a moderate temperature, so your vehicle doesn’t have to work extra hard trying to cool it down as soon as you start it.
  • Keep the window down, and the AC turned off. The engine has to work extra when you open the air conditioning, and many old vehicles struggle under the added pressure of having to cool the car down in intense heat.
  • Keep an eye on the gauge. This should be practice for everyone as even new vehicles can overheat.
  • Top up engine coolant as soon as the summer season begins. Doing so can save you from a lot of problems and costly repairs down the line.
  • Have your radiator flushed and checked. A leak or a clog in the system is the most common reason why cars overheat. Getting it cleaned and adding new coolant keeps the car cool and helps maintain optimal running condition.

Conclusion

Here we have presented eight answers for what makes your car overheat and some tips to help you prevent it. Though engine overheating is a severe problem, it can easily be avoided as long as you stay on top of your maintenance schedule. Give your vehicle the love and attention it deserves, and it will never leave you stranded. Ignore its needs, and it turns into a burden on your wallet.

Common Car Air Conditioning Problems

7 Common Car Air Conditioning Problems

It’s hard to imagine the daily commute in our cars in the summers without keeping the A/C turned on. Not only does it help aid in our comfort, but when the mercury starts reaching ranges above 100 degrees, it is a complete necessity to prevent heat-related health risks such as heat stroke. Thus, if your car’s air conditioning is giving issues, you should have it checked immediately. Below are 7 common car air conditioning problems and how they can be resolved.

1. Refrigerant Leakage

Among the most frequent causes behind why your car’s air conditioning might not be working is because of refrigerant leakage. As the A/C system ages and experiences wear and tear, leakage can occur at any part of it. However, most commonly, it tends to occur at the air conditioning hose connections.

If you feel this might be the cause, be sure to check in with an experienced car technician who may be able to locate the sources of the leakage and apply a special sealant to close them. In addition, they may then perform any further repairs if needed as well as the evacuation and recharge.

2. Bad Compressor

The A/C compressor is what circulates the refrigerant through the system and enables cold air to flow inside the car. There are many causes behind why the compressor may go bad or require replacement altogether. One of the chief reasons is that it has been kept dormant for a long period of time. Then, when you do start it, the sudden jolt may damage its internal components.

The solution to avoiding this predicament is simple. Just once a week, run your air conditioner at full blast for some 10-18 minutes. Do this even if the outside temperature isn’t hot, this habit will help keep the compressor in proper working condition at all times and greatly extend its lifespan.

3. Blocked or Broken Condenser

If the car’s air conditioning system is only blowing hot air, most likely, the problem could be with the condenser. This is the component responsible for re-cooling the refrigerant by allowing incoming airflow to dispel the excess heat.

However, if the path of the airflow gets blocked due to debris, gunk, or some other cause, the refrigerant isn’t cooled down properly, and hot air gets blown out as a result. Fortunately, the fixture for this problem is quite simple. The condenser unit is very easy to identify and locate – on most cars, it is found at the very front, behind the grill. You can visually spot if anything is causing the block and have it addressed

Sometimes, a broken condenser could also be a factor. It could be the result of equipment failure due to age or because of some roadside debris managing to go through the grill and casing, damaging the component. If that is the case, check-in with an experienced technician to see whether the problem can be resolved with repairs or whether a full replacement is required.

4. Faulty Cooling Fan

If you find that there is no issue with the condenser but the A/C is still blowing hot air, then the next likely culprit could a faulty cooling fan. Checking for the problem is easy. Simply open the car’s hood, start the engine and put your A/C on full blast. If you see that the cooling fan isn’t running, the most likely cause could be age; over time, cracks can develop, leading to equipment failure. Other common reasons could relate to electrical issues such as blown off fuses.

5. Wiring Issues

Various electrical wiring within your car can easily get damaged. Mice or other critters could chew on them; excess heating could melt the copper; their ends could loosen or break altogether; or, they could corrode due to too much exposure from the elements.

Understanding, diagnosing this issue can be a bit difficult. You can try doing a visual inspection first to identify any faulty wiring and see if it can be amended through a simple fixture, such as with electrical tap or replacement with new wiring. If the issue can’t be resolved this way, consider having the car inspected by professionals for further diagnosis.

6. Your Car is Overheating

If you suddenly see that you A/C is no longer giving off cool air, check to see if it is a result of your car overheating. Your car can overheat for a number of reasons, and the excess heat can make it impossible for the A/C system to cool the refrigerant or even function properly.

Continuing to drive an overheated is highly dangerous. If the temperature gauge is approaching near the red, turn off your car immediately and quickly call for professional help. Be also sure to check if the car coolant isn’t empty or leaking, as this tends to be the most common cause behind this.

7. Detached or Damaged Belts and Hoses

Your car’s air conditioning unit is equipped with many belts and hoses. Over time, as a result of aging, frequent wear, and tear or other reasons, they could become detached or damaged. This can prevent the system from operating normally or even stop functioning altogether. If you believe this to be the problem, there isn’t much you can do yourself to resolve it effectively. The best course of action is to take the car to an auto inspection and repair service.

PA Auto Inspection is Here to Help

In Philadelphia, some summer days can be excruciatingly hot, with temperatures nearing 100 degrees coupled with suffocating-lee high humidity levels. Having a non-functioning car, the A/C system on such days can be terrible. Fortunately, the majority of A/C problems are very inexpensive to deal with, and in the hands of well-qualified car technicians, can be resolved within minutes. PA Auto Inspection is only 10 minutes drive away from Benjamin Rush State Park. If your car is experiencing A/C problems, don’t hesitate to schedule a full inspection today by calling 215-259-7500.

A car undergoing repairs

7 Common Car Collision Repair Myths

A collision rattles more than just your car. It can leave you shaking for quite a while, and when you add the stress of collision repair on top, it becomes a killer stress package. But most of the stress comes from prevalent rumors. In this article, we debunk 7 common car collision repair myths.

You Can Only Use Insurance Company Approved Repair Shops

You don’t have to use the shop your insurance company recommends. If you have a preferred repair shop, you can definitely use their services instead. However, it is recommended that you take your insurance company’s recommendations into account as it helps with the settlement issues.’

Plus, not all repair shops accept compensation from insurance companies as the process is quite lengthy. Working with a recommended shop can speed up the process as your insurance agent likely has contacts and a system in place.

Your Insurance Covers the Total Cost of Repairs

Though a prevalent myth, it is just that! Car insurance is pretty similar to health insurance, where the insurance only covers repair costs if they exceed the deductible amount. Here the deductible amount you choose plays an important role.

Where choosing a higher deductible can help you get lower insurance rates, it does prove to be a problem during collision repairs. You may end up paying for all the repairs out of your pocket.

A Dealer Provides the Best Repair Service

It doesn’t matter whether you go to a dealer or an independent repair shop. It is a common misconception that only dealers have access to quality spare parts and trained staff.

Almost all repair shops have the same equipment and the essential training needed to work on auto body repairs. They also have equal access to OEM parts, so there is no reason why you should choose a dealer instead.

The reason why people often recommend dealers is because auto manufacturers provide them certifications. At least one dealer per area holds the certificate stating they are trained for car collision repairs. However, most dealers further outsource the repair work to independent shops, so the certification value is null and void.

Multiple Estimate is a Must

The law in most states does not oblige you to get a minimum of three estimates before selecting a service with the lowest one. The misconception is often fuelled by insurance companies who recommend you do that, but you aren’t required to do so by law.

You can instead take a much hassle-free route by searching online and looking for recommendations. Don’t take on the stress of visiting auto repair shops in-person. You can choose whichever shop offers services up to your standard.

Once Damaged the Frame Can Never Be Fixed

As long as you can find an experienced repair technician, you don’t have to worry about frame repairs. As long as the frame hasn’t been weakened to the point of no repair, it can effortlessly be restored.

Plus, the majority of new cars come with unibody frames that are incredibly easy to fix. If there is a part that is significantly damaged, you can remove it and replace it with a new section. In fact, as long as your auto body repair shop of choice is good, you can restore your car to almost as good as new.

You Only Get One Insurance Check

Estimating the cost and extent of damage caused by the collision can be challenging. You never know how intense the damage is until you begin the repair work. Once you take the car apart to put it back together is when you can thoroughly view how hard the collision was for the vehicle.

If the mechanic does find further damage after the initial appraisal, they must call the insurance company to have the vehicle re-appraised. There is no set limit for insurance checks, so there is no need to hesitate before contacting the insurance company about recently discovered underlying damage.

You Must Use the Dealership You Bought Your Car From

Most dealerships have attached repair shops that you can use, but you don’t have to. Dealerships often offer incentives to their customers to utilize their after-sales services like offering free oil changes and regular maintenance and repair work.

However, whether you choose to utilize their service for collision repair is totally up to you. You are not under any obligation to utilize their services, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

These are some of the most common car collision repair myths, and these are ones that die hard. They will probably be prevalent in the market ten years down the line, but you know better. Don’t be swayed by the word on the block and do your research so you can put your mind at ease. Here’s what you should do after an accident.

Check for Injuries
No matter how big or small a car crash, there is a chance you may get injured. Before doing anything else or making any swift movements, take a moment to assess your mental and physical health as well as that of your passengers. If you have a sprain or pain anywhere in the body, don’t rush any movements as you may end up making it worse.

Call for Help
Whether you are seriously injured or not, you must call 911. Even if it isn’t a significant collision, informing the authorities is essential, and in some states, it is even required by law. Without a police report, you may not be able to file for an insurance claim.

Call a Tow Truck
The last thing you should be doing post car crash is driving it home. You should move away from the vehicle, especially if the damage appears to be severe. Even if the accident isn’t severe, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is real, and you may be affected by it, whether you realize it or not.

Do not at any cost attempt to drive back home or to the repair shop. In fact, your car may look fine on the outside but could be damaged inside, which is a major safety threat.

Document the Entire Process
Not only must you have a copy of the police report, but you must also take pictures of the incident. It helps make the insurance claim procedure incredibly easy.

In fact, after you call 911, you should contact your insurance agency and run through the entire process with them to have the accident on record so that making a claim is easier.

You must also take down the other driver’s name, their full contact information, car’s make, color and model, the registration number, insurance policy details, location of the accident, and so on.

To Wrap It Up

You will come across many rumors regarding auto body repair work after an accident. In this article, we debunk some of the most common car collision repair myths on the market. However, there are many more to address.

In case you get into an accident ever. Make sure you follow the procedure mentioned above and then conduct online research on what you can and can’t. You must also search for what is required by law and what is only a recommendation, so you don’t fall prey to common car collision repair myths.

Ways to Lower Your Car Emissions

11 Easy Ways to Lower Your Car Emissions

Within the US, 20% of all polluting emissions are produced by personal vehicles. However, the real extent of harm their emissions cause is far worse than their share may imply. Unlike other major polluting sources industries and power plants, which are typically located away from major population centers, most vehicles are located within them. As such, our risk of exposure to dangerous pollutants is highest from cars.

It is because of this risk as well as the overall damage that it brings to the environment is why emission standards exist. In most US states, older cars are required to pass an annual emission inspection to remain roadworthy. Lowering your car emissions also can translate to a higher fuel economy, allowing your car to travel miles before hitting the gas station.

In this article, we have compiled together a list of the 11 easy ways to lower your car emissions, some of the recommendations mentioned here will also additionally help give your car’s various components in good order translating to less frequent visits to the repair shop.

1. Check the Tires

Under-inflated tires are a common cause of low gas mileage and thus higher emissions. They carry more surface resistance and thus, are harder for the car to roll around. The engine has to work harder to maintain speed and thus, use up more fuel than usual.

Every one to two weeks, check on your car’s tires and ensure they are within the pressure level as recommended by your car’s manufacturer. Keeping tires properly inflated also extends their service life due to less risk of wear and tear while driving.

2. Have the Car Serviced Regularly

Serving your car regularly allows you to keep it performing in mint condition and burn as less fuel as possible. Regular servicing is essential for safety reasons as improper fuel levels, a faulty braking system, a component malfunction, or neglected tires some of the leading causes behind accidents happening.

3. Avoid Hauling Excess Weight

The science here is simple: more weight = more work the engine has to do to move your car. Hauling excess luggage in your car’s boot or over the roof rack can cause an increase in fuel consumption and thus higher emissions. Try to ensure that any excess weight you put on the car stays within your manufacturer’s recommended limit. Not only will you be lowering your driving emissions this way but also extending the service life of your engine by putting less strain on it.

4. Drive Smoothly

The more your car accelerates and decelerates, the more fuel it will burn, and the higher the emission count will be. Smooth, careful driving works up your engine less and this results in less emission being produced as you drive your car.

5. Turn Off the Unneeded Electronics

Modern-day cars are an exceptionally complex piece of engineering composed of thousands of mechanical and electronic components. However, a lot on the electronic side can be safely turned off when they are not needed without worry and this can help reduce your car’s fuel consumption.

6. Use the Correct Engine Oil

Always opt for high-quality engine oil that is recommended by your car’s manufacturer. Your engine oil helps lubricate and reduce friction in the various moving parts in the engine as well as help disperse heat evenly through it. Using the correct engine oil will help ensure your engine to run more smoothly as well as pack in more performance and efficiency.

7.  Reduce Air Drag

Wind resistance, especially at high speeds, can have a tremendous impact on your car’s fuel consumption. While modern cars are designed to be as aerodynamic as possible, there are a few bits of things you can do yourself that can further help reduce air drag on your vehicle as well as enhance the looks of it in the process.

Below is a list of recommendations on how to make your car more aerodynamic. But, do make sure to consult with a trusted mechanic regarding the safety of such modifications on your particular car model before you decide to follow up with them.

  • Lowering your vehicle’s ground clearance
  • Removing the roof rack
  • Installing spats (wheel arch covers)
  • Adding side skirts
  • Installing a rear spoiler of the right design.
  • Installing a belly pan (underbody panel)

8.  Consider Fuel Additives

If you have an older car, mixing a quality fuel additive in its gas tank can really help improve its performance as well as greatly reduce the emission of many polluting particulates such as nitrogen oxides. Many fuel additives also grant additional benefits such as preventing the fuel injectors from getting clogged up and slow the rate of fuel deterioration from temperature extremes.

9. Avoid Prolonged Idling

On average, for every hour your car engine is left to idle, roughly a full gallon of fuel is wasted or roughly 2.13 ounces per minute. Around 17.68 to 22.38 lbs. of CO2 is released for every gallon of fuel that is burned in your car. Thus, whenever possible, avoid leaving your car idling for a prolonged period of time. Furthermore, in the case of most modern cars, turning off your engine when not moving and then restarting it again tends to burn less fuel than idling for more than half a minute.

10. Periodically Replace the Air Filters

An old, clogged up air filter can lead to a reduced airflow to your car’s engine, potentially leading to higher fuel consumption and higher emissions. It can also cause your car’s spark plugs to become fouled or increase engine deposits, which, if left unaddressed, can lead to a whole host of other problems. Eliminate such headaches by opting to regularly have your old air filters replaced with new ones at the recommended intervals as indicated in your car’s maintenance schedule.

11. Close Your Windows

Often, it might be more efficient in terms of emissions to turn on your car’s cooling system rather than allow air to flow into the car from the outside with the windows open up. Opening up the windows can significantly increase air drag, which as mentioned earlier, can greatly add to increased fuel consumption and emissions.

Trust Us for Next Inspection

Get your car fully inspected, including on emission tests at PA Auto Inspection. Our inspection comes complimentary with a free car wash as well as fresh cookies, hot coffee, and hi-speed Wi-Fi for you while you wait at our lounge as we do inspection on your car. To schedule your inspection or for any queries, call 215-259-7500.

Signs It’s Time to Replace the Car Battery

8 Signs It’s Time to Replace the Car Battery

There is nothing more frustrating than trying to crank your car engine on a cold day for work and seeing that it refuses to budge. You check for the problem under the hood; everything seems fine except for the part where the battery is located. Corroded terminals, a bad smell, and even the battery case being misshapen – you figure out that your car battery is badly in need of replacement. Thus, you are forced to call a mechanic to have it replaced and get all the damaged components fixed. Continue reading “8 Signs It’s Time to Replace the Car Battery”

Reasons Why Oil Change is Important

7 Reasons Why an Oil Change is Important

One of the most important aspects of car care is the timely changing of a car’s engine oil. Your car engine is a complex piece of machinery made up of thousands of different moving parts. The oil helps keep them lubricated while preventing the wear and tear of your car’s vital components. Continue reading “7 Reasons Why an Oil Change is Important”

A Red Sports Car

10 Habits to Ensure Your Car Lasts Longer

A car is a good investment and an expensive one too. Owning a vehicle has undoubtedly become an integral part of modern society. A car makes it really easy to move from one place to another, carry groceries, transport people, and whatnot. Continue reading “10 Habits to Ensure Your Car Lasts Longer”