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CAR TIPS

MOST IMPORTANT TIP
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This page was created so we can give some tips on helping your car last as long as possible. We come across articles that we feel are accurate and post them here for you to review


THIS IS A GREAT ARTICLE FROM GEICO

I tried to copy this article but was unsuccessful, so here is the link. Click the back button to return back to us. This article was in the Geico News Magazine that came out 5/09



I found this article from MSN News-10 Tips to Make your car last longer (08/12/08)

10 Tips to Make Your Car Last Longer Instead of shelling out for a new car, invest some time — and a lot less money — into keeping your current ride.

Getting from point A to point B by car costs a certain amount of dough, and thanks to recent record-high gas prices it takes more of your hard-earned money than ever before. But while you can’t always control ownership costs such as fuel, repairs and insurance rates, one thing you do have power over is making your car last longer and maintaining its value. Here you have a choice: Either spend money on a new car every few years or keep your current car running great and looking sharp. If you decide to go the latter route, follow these 10 tips to help keep your ride rolling.

Breathe Easier Even the most mechanically challenged drivers know to change a car’s oil and oil filter on a regular basis — even if they don’t always do it. But other fluids and filters also need regular maintenance. For example, changing your air filter helps your car breathe easier and the engine last longer. “If your air filter is clogged, your engine is not performing properly,” notes Jack Nerad, editorial director and executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book. “It also hurts your fuel economy, and it can harm the engine over the long term.”

Keep It Cool Maintaining your car’s cooling system and the proper coolant level is as important as making sure the engine is well lubed and can potentially save you thousands of dollars in repairs. “A cooling system failure can result in your engine literally melting down,” warns Nerad. “Because of lack of proper coolant and maintenance of hoses, you can have major problems.”

Pressure Check Tires are often the most neglected part of a car, Nerad adds. “Most people don’t pay much attention to keeping their tires at the right inflation pressure,” he says. “And it’s not only bad for the car, the tires and fuel economy, but it’s also a safety issue. The simple step of keeping the tires up to proper pressure is valuable all the way around,” he adds, “and it essentially costs almost nothing.”

Fully En-Gauged If there is a problem with your oil pressure, cooling system or even tire pressure on the latest vehicles, your car’s gauges will tell you — if you’re paying attention to them. “The vast majority of people don’t,” remarks Nerad. “That’s why manufacturers went to ‘idiot lights’ to give a clear indication of when there’s a problem.”

Get Regular Checkups Find a repair shop and mechanic you trust. “And let that shop service your car all the time,” says Dave Jones, owner of Jones Automotive in Green County, Pennsylvania, and co-host of the Web site AskAutoPro.com. “When you get sick you don’t go to a different doctor every time. Your doctor knows you from top to bottom, inside and out.” A good mechanic will get to know your car and look over it the same way, Jones adds.

Look Closely Jones also suggests spending time inspecting your car. “Every now and then, take five minutes and walk around the car and look at it,” he said. Check to see if the tires are wearing unevenly. Open the hood and check out the hoses. Make sure all the lights are working. “It only takes a couple of minutes to check things like that,” he adds.

Get on a Schedule While your owner’s manual will have a maintenance schedule, another advantage of using the same mechanics on a regular basis is they will be able to make sure you stick to the schedule — and take care of things the manual may not include. “If you go to different places each time you have your car serviced, they won’t know the last time you had something done,” says Aaron Clements, owner of C&C Automotive in Augusta, Georgia, and a 31-year auto-repair veteran. “So you may end up paying for unnecessary repairs. Most shops have electronic records so they know when each service was done. The scheduled maintenance charts in owner’s manuals tell only part of the story,” he adds. “So it’s also a benefit to have a relationship with a service advisor who knows your vehicle and when to perform service in addition to what’s in the owner’s manual.”

Drive Smarter The way you drive has an effect on how long your car — and your gas — will last. “You not only save wear and tear by having good driving habits, but also fuel,” claims Clements. “Taking off fast and coming to a stop quickly can be bad on a car and affect the engine, the brakes and other things.”

Keep It Clean Nerad also stresses taking care of the exterior of your car by regularly washing and waxing it. And don’t forget about the interior. “That’s an often overlooked area,” he says. “Spend time keeping it clean and clean-smelling without perfuming it, and vacuum the carpet on a regular basis. Get spills out immediately because if you don’t they’re more difficult to remove.”

Keep it Covered Nerad also suggests storing your car in a garage or under a carport or cover. “Keep your car out of the sun,” he says. “And keep it away from bird droppings and tree sap. Also be careful where you park to avoid dings,” he adds.

Keeping your car maintained will not only make it last longer but also will make it much more pleasant to drive — which will make you want to take better care of it. “If you have a vehicle that looks good and you enjoy getting in it and driving, you’re much more prone to take care of it,” observes Clements.” And since it won’t last forever, taking care of your car will also increase the resale value. “It’s very clear on our site that condition is crucial,” says Nerad. “In real estate they say it’s all about location, location, location, but with car values it’s all about condition, condition, condition.”

FLASH AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR TIP: If it comes down to where you have no choice but to replace your car and are searching for a used car, Flash offers a vehicle pre-purchase inspection for $30. This inspection will make you aware of repairs that will be needed to make the car safe & reliable. You have a right to know that the car you are buying is not a "LEMON", which could cost you thousands of dollars. The last thing you need during these economical hard times is a car that needs tons of repairs.
Remember, people trade in their car because it is having alot of issues, coming up for expensive maintenance intervals etc. You don't want to be stuck making car payments and have expensive repairs on top of an already tight budget.
Another tip = If someone won't allow you to take the car for a thorough inspection prior to purchase, RUN as fast as you can off the lot. Don't allow yourself to be taken advantage of a salespersons line of "We have our cars inspected before selling" or if they only will allow you to take it to a particular mechanic/shop only. It should be a mechanic YOU select and nobody else. We will notify you of all repairs needed to make your used car purchase, that way, you can take the information to the sales man and either negotiate on a lower price or continue your search for a different car.

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