Friday, January 4, 2008

Some Tips To Help You Keep Your Vehicle Looking Like New

When you decide to make a long term commitment such as buying a new vehicle, it is important to consider how you are going to care for it. Keeping the beautiful paint and finish in perfect condition is simple if you purchase a vehicle car cover. Car covers can provide various levels of protection based on the level of protection you need in your area.

If you have a garage at your home you may think a car cover will be of no use to you, however that is very untrue. You may have a garage to store your vehicle in most of the time but there are always times when for one reason or another the garage cannot be used for your vehicle. There are also the times when your car is away from home at a store or park or possibly on a trip somewhere. If you truly want the best protection for your vehicle then you need a car cover.

Any person who has been to a public parking lot in recent years has probably noticed the vast amount of vehicles in the lot. Sometimes you may drive around for ten minutes trying to find a parking spot. This would be an excellent time to have a car cover for your vehicle, providing extra protection against reckless people, who may bump into your vehicle with a door, cart or occasionally a car. Oftentimes in parking areas, people will not report damaging another vehicle because they look at the area and may not see any damage. If you have a cover on your car there will be no more door dings or cart bumps that can damage your vehicle. Car covers can provide enough protection for your vehicle that some of the minor bumps by parking vehicles may not cause damage.

Another reason you should invest in a car cover is the protection it may provide against damaging weather. Hail damage is the number one non accident cause of damage often reported on insurance claims. In the best of storms you may end up with pea size hail causing a few thousand dollars in damage to your unprotected vehicle. If you should use a cover for your car, the same storm is not going to cause any damage because the cover may protect your car from the hail. Another cause of damage in storms that can be prevented with a cover is falling twigs and small tree branches and debris. The small branches are often enough to damage a new paint job on your vehicle.

Regardless of whether you have a garage or not, investing in a cover for your vehicle is smart. You may save a lot of money from minor repairs needed on your car due to parking mishaps and stormy weather.

By Gregg Hall

Car Parts: Keep Your Car Top In Performance And Appearance

Car parts are very important in smartening up a vehicle and keeping it look scintillating. In addition to being supplementary components that improve the capability of a vehicle, they play a cardinal role in the entire process of keeping a car function smooth and fine. Some of the auto parts are exigent, a must-have for all car owners; some of them are fashion accessories, used to glamorise a car.

For anybody, buying a car is not enough; taking good care of it is very important to get it run smooth and enjoy travelling in it. Auto care involves paying comprehensive attention to the engine of the car with especial emphasis on security side. At the same time, it also includes interior and exterior stylising, adding car parts, taking good care of the body, tyres, and other mechanical parts. Only then the vehicle will be top in performance and appearance too.

Besides taking good care of the car, one problem many car owners face is inadequate space. When an average car is made, it is made to be sufficient for its users. But still it lacks in so many things, though very small. So, the owner needs to add many other car parts to it thereby to take full advantage of the car. While various accessories are used to do away with other problem, space issue is solved by adding roof boxes to the car.

It is seen that the roof of a car remains vacant contributing nothing for the owner of the car except protecting him from sun and rain. The addition of car parts like roof boxes or roof racks on the top of the car serves an additional purpose without hampering the main one. Roof boxes provide the owner with extra space thereby to keep small and expensive accessories in the boxes. On the other hand, roof racks allow one to fix bike, kayak, fishing rod, etc. with the racks to carry them along.

Protecting Your Car Mats From Wear And Tear

One common problem faced by all car owners is keeping the interiors of their vehicle spick and span. The most exasperating aspect is cleaning and scrubbing the car mats. Plain and dry dust can be easily vacuumed, but tough stains like spilled liquid (milk, cola or juices) or muddy shoes take considerable effort to go away. The stains and the dirt pinch more if the car mats are costly and stylish.

The other problem that people face is that too much scrubbing of the car mats can make them look worn and old within a short span of time, and this can affects the swank look of your car. Hence, people are always looking for ways and means to protect these car accessories, and at the same time maintain the clean and stylish look of the vehicle.

A solution to these problems is that it is better to go for car mats that are not only good in quality and looks, but at the same time are cheap and easy to maintain. It is advisable to buy car mats from departmental stores and box mart stores, rather than car dealers, because they are comparatively lighter on the pocket. But, more often than not, these mats do not fit the vehicle perfectly.

The easiest and the most effective way of protecting your costly car mats and preserving their new and fresh look is to buy some plastic runner material, and cut it exactly in the shape and size of your car mats to create a very tight custom fit. Be careful while cutting around the area that runs around the seats. In case you are afraid of cutting your car mats by mistake, while cutting the plastic, it is advisable to place a piece of cardboard underneath the plastic while cutting.

This will make the mats easy to clean. Put just a little water and some soap, and scrub for really tough stains; and with very little effort, your mats are squeaky clean once again.

By Alexus Devon

Car Accessories: Reflect Your Personality

A car is not simply a medium of commuting. It is sometimes your representative, a reflection of your personality, and an embodiment of your style and taste. You may not have time enough to think about this. But the world sees your inner self in it. So, it is not sufficient that you keep the car in a condition that it is capable of only taking you to the office and then back home.

Rather, you should take pains to make it as impressive as your personality, so that your ambassador gives your proper image in front of those who matter for you. In this regard, you can make use of car accessories to give your set of wheels an attractive look. There are endless accessories that you can use to stylise and glamorise your car. The auto market is abounding with them. Just take a trip down to the market and get your pick.

It is not that you will use car accessories for the purpose of bedecking the vehicle. Some accessories are important for ensuring higher safety. Accidents are not something that you can stop altogether. They are unpredictable occurrences and no measure of precautions is adequate to avoid them. However, by adding some security kits in the car, you can reduce the chances of meeting with accidents. At least, you will get a warning when there is any impending danger lying ahead.

Car accessories can be bought online as most of the manufacturers have websites to sell their products over the Internet. If you do not have time to go to the market or if you find it a hassle, you can just visit the virtual world of online auto accessory shops. Neither will you waste your time nor will you to face any hassle. Sitting in the car, you can shop for the product you need.

Performance Suspension Is All About The Ride

The Skinny on H&R Springs: H&R Special Springs offers 3 different stages of spring kits, 2 stages of matched shock and spring packages, wheel spacers, a large selection of 60mm (2.3") race springs, as well as numerous special order racing applications. OE Sport Springs are a Stage 1 modification which means that they provide minimal lowering level and a just slightly more aggressive stance. The Sport Spring kit in the Stage 2 group offer more for styling appearance and increased stiffness of 25-30%. The Race Springs are a Stage 3 modification and provide extreme lowering as well a much firmer, higher performance ride.

The H&R Special Springs: Cup Kit and Coil Over packages are matched shocks and spring sets that are tuned for excellent high performance handling yet still maintain a very compliant ride quality. The Stage 3.5 Cup Kit package differs from the Stage 4 Coil Over package in adjustability and intended use. Cup Kits are a performance street suspension that offers lowering of 2" or greater and have a fixed ride height, whereas Coil Overs are inteded for high performance street use as well as light track use and offer adjustable lowering of 1-3" or 3-5" lowering based upon the kit and application. More radical full race kits are available.

H&R Wheel Spacers: When it comes to all-out cornering performance, one rule applies: wider is really, truly better. H&R TRAK+ wheel spacers let you balance the handling and performance of your car to suit your aggressive driving style, and without spending the time, money and trouble of springing for bigger wheels and tires. Most manufacturers, even Porsche and BMW, leave 20 to 30mm of extra space between the wheels and the fenders, to suit arcane regulations or to leave space for flapping tire chains. These light-alloy spacers push your existing wheels or even your hot, aftermarket alloys out to fill the wheelwells properly, giving you better cornering, better aerodynamics and even better looks. Wheel spacers are also great for making more room for those BIG Porsche brake upgades.

By Michelle Betz

Build A Better Body For Your Wheels

Do you love your car just the way it is, or are you looking to fix 'er up the way you really want it to be? If you're the creative type who wants to do things your way, why not take advantage of the great car body kits that are available from reputable parts dealers? You can stop in at the local neighborhood store to check out and select the parts that will bring your vehicle up to speed, so to speak. Or you can virtually browse online websites to find the parts you want to make your car everything you need.

A well-stocked auto supply kit knows your car better than you do. The associates can give you a quick rundown on what you can do to make your car better, faster, and more efficient in no time flat. They can give you detailed instructions and precise parts for any make, model, and year of vehicle, truck, or SUV you have in mind. For example, check out the wing spoiler and ground spoiler kits for your Mercury Cougar. Easy to install with solid, durable materials, you will love the way your car cruises after adding features like these.

Make sure you have the know-how to do the job right. If you don't, look around for someone who can do it for you at a fair rate. While a dealership or auto garage can put in the labor to add your new options, they could charge steep rates, so you may want to look elsewhere for help. Follow instructions carefully, and contact the parts dealer if you come up short a bolt or two. While you may feel that the part is secure minus the extra hardware, it isn't worth having it come loose and scrape the body finish or even detach because you don't feel like tracking the extra parts.

Compare prices, as they can vary widely from one dealership to another. Become familiar with some of the construction techniques and materials used to create the parts you want to add to your car. Sometimes you can find basically the same feature under a different name for a much lower cost. Do your homework and take some time to shop area stores as well as online websites. Remember, there's one born every day, so don't become a statistical scam victim by purchasing parts that won't hold up or may even be "hot."

It may be a good idea to check out the latest product reviews on the various car product websites online. You can visit chat rooms or discussions boards, and also read the detailed reviews that are often found on the Web. Posted by those in the know, you can learn more in ten minutes of reading sometimes than you can from talking with a parts dealer associate.

After installing your new body parts, keep them well maintained so that they last and help your vehicle become everything you want it to be.

By Charles Kassotis

Mercedes Performance Parts Gambit Pays

Since mass-produced cars like those of the German automaker Mercedes Benz roll out of the production shop setup for standard drive applications and average driver expectations, it is not very often that one sees a Mercedes Benz perform flat out. Backed by a successful campaign in the Formula Circuit, Mercedes Benz is known for race cars. But, as the technology on marquee Mercedes Benz models are earmarked only for a niche market, for most Mercedes Benz, the technology is under the hood but the specifications are unfortunately, not.

Depending on which side of the fence one stands, mass-produced Mercedes Benz models are best in class, but the thought of available Mercedes Benz technology not included in regular models is almost regrettable. Production cost, one should think, is a major consideration. As the way things are, Mercedes Benz owners just have to take it as a good thing. At the flipside of the standard issue cars is the thriving hot rod industry. The hot rod industry approximates the envelope-pushing technology of major car manufacturers. It deals with car modifications, basically the car technology that should have gone in the car. As it is a car modification facility, parts of engine performance that Mercedes Benz owners are looking to focus on can be kept apart from the other according to importance.

Fitments available in the hot rod industry are often called performance parts, ranging from performance brake pads to performance exhaust system. On the whole, performance parts are specialized car parts that tweak the car setup toward performance, making car modification a lucrative gambit. In most cases, they are replacement parts. Mercedes Benz maintenance items like those in the friction brake system, which are chronically exposed to high-heat operating condition and are prone to wear out, have performance parts equivalents.

In the case of the Mercedes Benz brake system, while the stock fitted Mercedes Benz brake rotor sports a contact disc surface, the performance brake rotor is designed with a heat vent system. Performance parts come in cross-drilled, finned, and slotted brake rotors. These hollowed out portions on the contact surface of the Mercedes-Benz rotors allow an exhaust for heat. When heat does not build up in the Mercedes-Benz brake system, the rotor does not get deformed all too easily and therefore reduce the braking power of the car. Additionally, the hollowed out surface of the PERFORMANCE rotors makes the brake pads cleave to the disc more tightly, resulting in greater speed retardation.

On the engine side, performance parts can be fitted on the cold air intake system, aimed at drawing in greater amount of cold air that goes into the combustion chambers and mixes with the fuel to form the cars burn material. The Mercedes Benz manifold also has Mercedes performance parts equivalent. Since manifold stockpiles the exhaust for emission, a manifold that is not up to specs can result in backpressure buildup. When the engine burns the air and the fuel mixture, exhaust materials become the byproducts. These fumes are ushered out of the system through the manifolds. The performance manifold, called the header, has bigger passageways compared to stock issue, allowing a freer flow of exhaust. Because fumes do not stay long in the exhaust system and backpressure is prevented to build up, no horsepower from the engine is needed to help the exhaust system push out the gases.

By: Dwyane Thomas

Fast Cars And The Weight Issue

Weight is one of the most important issues to consider when building a fast car for road or track. Putting a car on a serious diet is pretty much free horsepower, as any attempt to lighten a car improves the power to weight ratio, this seriously improves acceleration.

The gains on a lightening a car are huge and not just limited to gains in acceleration either. Once you have lightened a fast car you will find the car performs better in the corners and under braking, parts such as brakes and tires will last longer on the car also.

The potential gains are huge but it must be done correctly, you would not want to lighten a rear wheel drive car too much on the rear or you may find traction a problem particularly with a high power output.

The truth is your fast car could be made a great deal faster cheaply and easily just by shaving a few pounds off the body.

How do we remove weight from the fast car?

This bit is as easy as you want it to be, but as with most forms of car modification it depends on how far you want to go. I know a guy who races a BMW and he decided to go all out on weight saving, he even scraped every bit of under-seal from the floors of the car, extreme perhaps but he managed to remove nearly 2 stone of under-seal, not a bad effort.

The obvious place to start saving weight on your fast car is by removing the interior, and anything else that you do not need, the front seats can be replaced with light weight racing items, the unused wiring removed, carpets and sound deadening, pretty much all of the unnecessary parts, my car has just a driver seat and a cage with much of the unnecessary wiring removed. This makes for a car with very impressive performance.

Many other components can be replaced with lighter parts, gear box casings, axle covers etc. It is worth noting that a stainless steel exhaust is lighter than the same in mild steel, so this constitutes a worthwhile investment.

It is also important to reduce the unsprung weight on the car also, by this I mean wheels, brakes and anything else before the suspension mounts, this provides a very good increase in the handling of the car.

By: Gavin Drake