Articles:

9 Gas-Saving Tips

Over the past few months, many families have readjusted their budgets to accommodate for rising gas prices. It’s not unusual to pay over $50, $60 or even close to $100 at the pump these days, depending on the vehicle you drive. While we don’t have much control over the price at the pumps, there are a few ways we can save money on gas while driving and maintaining our vehicles – and allow us to visit those painful gas pumps less often. Be a Smart Stopper As you see a stop light or stop sign approaching, start slowing down sooner, and don’t ride the gas all of the way up to the breaking point. Also, when the light turns green, don’t “gun it,” and instead ease back into driving. Drive Slower While none of us want to drive like little old ladies, it will save us money (and keep us safer) by driving slower. Lighten up the gas pedal, and slow it down when driving. You can increase your gas mileage as much as 1 mile/hour (depending on the vehicle you drive) by driving 65 rather than ... read more

Electric Cars: The Pros and Cons of Going Green(er)

America is a car culture. We buy big, drive far, commute alone and judge each other by what’s in the driveway. And we’re paying for it in numerous ways. Taking the DOT and other estimates of the general commuting population of larger cities into account we are throwing an average of 13,000 tons of CO2 into the air on a daily basis. The average cost of fuel for the same daily commute was approximately $15.5 million dollars. So why aren’t we all driving electric cars? The industry has had difficulty getting off the ground due to technology and consumer issues but we may be on the cusp of an electric revolution. This year 12 car manufacturers will introduce EVs, hoping to entice a huge car nation to take the chance and plug one in for themselves. So what are the Pros ... read more

The Harm In Skipping An Oil Change For Kansas City Drivers

People in Kansas City have been hearing a lot about higher oil change intervals these days. Maybe you’re wondering: What are the key issues? Some new vehicle manufacturers in Kansas City are now recommending much higher oil change intervals than they have in the past. As much as 5,000 to 8,000 miles or more. This practice came under scrutiny when four of the largest new car manufacturers announced that owners like those in Kansas City were experiencing engine damage resulting from these higher oil change intervals. The manufacturers’ standard oil drain service for particular vehicles was scheduled at around 7,500 miles. People following these recommendations were experiencing engine damage. It turns out that oil sludge was building up. This caused small oil passages to clog and engine parts to fail. What causes oil sludge? It’s a factor of time and mileage. There are hot spots in every engine that cause o ... read more

Does The 3,000 Mile Rule Still Hold For Oil Changes?

It’s no secret we’re keeping our cars longer and that means that routine maintenance becomes even more important. The most basic of all scheduled upkeep is the oil change and it’s also the most important. Oil performs three vital functions for the performance of your car. It keeps engine components working smoothly together, oil helps draw heat away from your car’s combustion chamber and it helps prevent carbon from accumulating in the engine. So How Often Should I Change My Oil? Most of us have grown up with the 3,000 mile rule. We have our dads and quick change oil places to thank for that and it used to be pretty much true. These days it’s not so simple. Our driving habits are different, our cars are more efficient, and oil is made up of different stuff than it used to be ... read more

Driving Tips for Snow and Ice

Kansas City’s first large snowstorm hit one week ago, and today our grass and trees are still covered with snow! While snow can be stunning and beautiful from indoors, it’s not so stunning when you have to drive in winter-like conditions. Driver safety in winter’s weather is very important. Not only does driving safely in winter weather keep your automobile running efficiently – but more importantly, it helps keep you and your passengers safe! Avoiding Winter Weather Car Accidents Our biggest fears when bad weather hits is that we’re going to get into a car accident, and that we’re going to get stuck in the snow. We encourage all drivers to stay very ALERT while driving, and especially in bad weather. Do what you can to avoid any accidents. Always be aware of the cars around you, as well as any upcoming stoplights, stop signs or busy intersections. Drive slowly. While you cannot control if another car hits you, you can control how you operate your car and your alertness when it come ... read more

Winter Emergency Tips To Stay Safe

Now that the leaves are almost off the trees and the holidays are nearer it’s time to imagine family gatherings, fires in the fireplace, and being stuck in the snow. Be prepared for winter emergencies. Well, except for that last part. But as much as we like to think about the pleasant site of snowfall we should also be prepared for the less than pleasant side. This can mean accidents, becoming stranded, or just getting your car to start on a below zero morning. A Federal Highway Administration study said that 75% of all weather-related crashes occur on wet pavement and 11% happen on snowy or slushy roads. So having a winter emergency kit is essential for the safety of you and your family. What to include: a shovel windshield scraper and small broom flashlight with extra batteries-keep the batteries reversed until you need them in case you accidentally turn it on and burn them out. battery powered ... read more

Power Steering Service

For most of us, it is hard to remember life without power steering – cranking those great big steering wheels? It was a pretty good workout. Now power steering is standard. The heart of any power steering system is its pump. The pump pressurizes the power steering fluid that provides assist for steering. Most pumps are driven by a belt that is run by the engine – a few are electrically powered. A high-pressure hose passes fluid from the pump to the steering gear. A low pressure hose returns the fluid back to the pump. These hoses can develop leaks, so it is a good idea to inspect them at every oil change. Low fluid can damage the power steering pump. That is why fluid level is on the checklist for a full-service oil change. The fluid needs to be compatible with the hoses and seals, so check your owners’ manual for the right type – or just ask your service technician. The fluid cleans, cools and lu ... read more

Hands-Free Devices to Avoid Cell Phone Use While Driving

See if any of these phone apps or devices can help you keep your hands on the steer wheel and your eyes on the road. I have noticed I have had to give a quick touch to the horn to get the drive in the lane next to me to stop coming into my lane because they are messing with their phone. Most all of us do it but spend some time and see if any new phone apps or phone devices can help you out. Hands-Free Driving Devices Several hands-free devices have hit the market and made for a safer driving experience. Hands-Free Calling for Vehicles (Like OnStar) OnStar revolutionized the way to place phone calls and receive help with hands-free driving in GM vehicles. Since then, several other models have come on the market to make hands-free calling available to everyone. Hands-free calling is not only helpful for when you’re lost or needing to find an address, but the system also allows you to “call home” or “call mom” with ... read more

Automotive New Year’s Resolutions For 2013

Do you make New Year’s Resolutions? Do you promise to lose weight? Eat better? Be nicer? Read a book that doesn’t have a vampire in it? We all make promises to ourselves to live better but how about your car? How about this year you make a few resolutions for your friend in the driveway? Fix those little things before they become bigger things. That noise under the hood isn’t going away no matter how high you turn the radio. Give it some love now and then. Routine maintenance will go a long way toward keeping your car on the road. Don’t neglect oil changes, proper tire care, even windshield wiper replacements. Keep it clean. If you have a long commute you’ll have a nicer one if you don’t have to stare at (or smell) Taco Bell wrappers, newspapers, old mail or toddler drippings. And you’ll avoid the stare a ... read more

Are You A Defensive Driver?

If you’ve ever driven a car you’ve probably seen the Multi-Tasking Driver. They’re the ones who think they can eat, read, apply makeup, text, talk, dress (or undress) and deal with the kids all while keeping an eye on the road and reloading the CD player. 18% of injury crashes in 2010 were reported as distraction-affected crashes. Distracted driving isn’t good for anyone. Then there are the drivers who take it really personally. They can be aggressive or even angry if they don’t get their way on the road. These drivers cause one third of all traffic crashes. The worst is the inebriated driver and whether its drugs or alcohol they are a major danger to others on the streets and highways. Almost half of all drivers who were killed in crashes and tested positive for drugs also had alcohol in their system. But there are also drivers who just aren’t paying attention and wander in and out of l ... read more

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