Tag Archives: Recommended

Winter Time Blues

[ad#Top of Post Left]I really hope everyone had a great holiday break, enjoyed eating too much, or whatever you tradition of choice requires of you.  Usually my holidays exist only to provide and receive gifts from others, followed by gorging at the kitchen table.  It’s an amazing time of the year, but when it’s over I’m left looking at all my cool stuff I get to use…when it warms up.  Which means lots of new garage and automobile toys, that will be put to better use when it breaks freezing again.

What else makes the winter time, right after the New Year, so dull for auto enthusiasts is that it’s hard to enjoy doing regular maintenance when you can’t feel your hands.  For example, my wife is due for an oil change, which is something I would normally do myself.  However, it’s just far too cold and too big a hassle for me to brave the elements, so I’ll be visiting the local speedy lube.

Because I’ll be going to the professionals I’ll also be able to skip out on some other winter time regular maintenance checkups.  For example, they will make sure the air pressure in my tires is set properly, plenty of tread to brave sudden snow storms, and top my fluid levels off.  Usually a full service oil change center will complete all of the above for a very reasonable price.  This low price becomes even more inviting when you realize all of this will be done while you are toasty in the waiting room.

So, once, maybe twice a year, I’ll leave the auto work to someone else.  Depending on how long of a winter we have headed our way, might have to stop in for another fast oil change.  Next post I’ll talk about must have items to keep in your vehicle for road trips or even grocery runs in the winter time.  Getting stuck on the side of the road in the middle of winter is no joke, so let’s plan like it.

Start The Year Right: Finally Buy A Convertible!

Have you always dreamed of owning a convertible, but didn’t think it was a practical choice? Whether your hesitations were related to price, safety or some other consideration, you’re in luck: The brand new 2011 models are hitting dealerships, and this could be your year to finally own the car of your dreams!

Convertibles boast one main advantage over traditional cars: They can be driven with the top down, creating a uniquely exciting driving experience for even the most seasoned motorist. Yet there are many reasons why a convertible could seem like an unattainable fantasy on four wheels: Their retractable tops can make them less safe in the event of a collision. Driving with the top down leads to decreased fuel efficiency. And, of course, the price of buying a convertible – especially a high-end luxury brand – can be exorbitant, to say the least.

Fortunately, the 2011 convertibles fix many of these shortcomings, making buying a convertible possible for a wider range of car fanatics than ever before. On one end of the price spectrum, the 2011 Bentley Continental Supersports convertible – which features an intimidating six-figure price tag – offers a faster driving experience, with speedier acceleration to boot. Bentley’s FlexFuel capabilities, which makes the convertible biofuel-compatible, helps make the four-seater a more environmentally friendly choice. Another high-end option, the 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet, offers drivers (and passengers) increased comfort with its insulated top, draft reduction features and AIRSCARF system that circulates heated air out of the headrests.

Another great choice for convertible fans is the 2011 Nissan 370Z Roadster, a leaner, faster driving machine than in years past. And for those seeking a more budget-friendly option, try the 2011 MINI Convertible on for size. In addition to great handling and better safety, thanks to a nearly-concealed rollover protection bar, you can expect your MINI to cost you under $40,000.

Of course, buying new isn’t the only way you can make your convertible dreams come true in the new year. A replacement convertible top will offer you a way to revitalize a classic convertible without spending a fortune. In fact, a brand new auto top can help make an old car look like new again. Also, you won’t have to worry about what model you’re buying: Aftermarket auto top retailers sell for most major brand models, everything from Toyota to BMW convertible tops can be found. Whether you decide to purchase one of the fine convertibles new to the market for 2011 or you opt for jazzing up a classic instead, you can look forward to many days and nights of driving enjoyment in the months ahead.

Aftermarket Auto Parts

The aftermarket auto parts industry is supported by enthusiasts and help shape what becomes standard on future vehicles.  Customers need better than OEM components, because they push their vehicles to the limit, they want more bang for their buck.  Of course, every industry has it’s pitfalls and the automotive aftermarket is no exception.  Scams, lies, and faulty aftermarket auto parts litter the internet, so below are some of my tips on buying smart.

Buy From A Trusted Aftermarket Auto Parts Manufacturer

Just because you aren’t buying OEM products doesn’t mean there aren’t known companies to trust.  Generally speaking when thinking of cold-air intakes, I think of BBK, and when I think of drag suspension I think of Eibach.  The point being that when buying brand name components, you are protecting your investment, and reducing the risk of getting faulty components.

Furthermore, buying from quality manufacturers in the after market auto parts industry, a warranty is generally included.  Aftermarket components are not cheap, so a warranty can help you sleep at nigt, after you place that charge on your card.

Buy From A Trusted Aftermarket Auto Parts Website

Not all aftermarket auto parts website are created equal.  It’s very easy for people to throw up a website, that looks like official, but may be a fly by night company.  If the deal sounds too good to be true, it usually is, so stay away from websites offering a product for $100’s less than everywhere else.  If in doubt, look for a contact phone number, reputable companies in the aftermarket auto industry will offer a way to speak directly to customer service, not just a static web page.

Stay Away From Promises That Sound Crazy

Yes, I’m looking at you ‘Tornado’, or super charge your car with Home Depot components manuals.  This is absurd, won’t work, and will most likely destroy your car, at best.  If you just have money burning a hole in your pocket, send it my way, don’t waste your time with over promised goods that are hair brained.

Speaking of over promises and under delivering, eBay is a haven for such predators of the aftermarket auto industry.  Individuals hide behind good feedback for other products and the try to sell you junk, make their money, and move on.  A few years ago, one of the hottest selling items on eBay was a chip to increase horsepower in your car.  Turns out, it was just a resistor that did nothing for your vehicle, except maybe cause lower gas mileage.  Didn’t stop people from buying them by the truck loads though, just because it was on eBay and cheap.

Don’t be stupid.

Return Policies On Aftermarket Auto Parts

Find out the return policy for the website that you are buying your aftermarket components from.  It’s real easy when buying aftermarket parts to buy the wrong thing, say for the wrong year car, different model, etc.  Mistakes happen and knowing if the website you buy from will support you and take the product back can make or break a deal in my book.  Expect a restocking fee, but a reputable company should accept returns and help make sure you are happy with your purchase.


Enthusiasts help drive the automotive industry and thanks to the internet it’s easier than ever to add aftermarket components to your vehicles.  Some parts are real easy to change, especially with all the information on do-it-yourself manuals that can be found the net over.  Follow some of these simple tips and buying aftermarket auto parts online should be a rewarding and money saving experience for that next project.  And it’s worth repeating, dont’ be stupid, if it’s too good to be true, it’s a lie.

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Common Car Care Misconceptions

Taking the maintenance of your car seriously will make your ride more secure and save you a huge amount of money.  However, what most drivers don’t know is that sound car care habits of the past are not useless nowadays.

Technology evolves, and so present cars are different from cars of the past.  Manufacturers have thought about how our driving experience can be made easier and more secure. It is time to review these myths.

The first, almost unknown, myth is that you have to change the oil and oil filter of your car every 3,000 miles. Oil change is surely still necessary. Cars don’t run a closed system in regard to oil.  However, modern technology have twofold ways of saving oil. First, modern motor parts fit better nowadays as they did in the past, so they run smoothly (literally) with less oil. The second point is that modern electronic like the OLS (Oil Life System) controls the quality of your oil and informs your when it’s time for oil change.

A second maintenance need of the past is nowadays no more necessary: no new car needs a yearly radiator flush nowadays. Cooling systems are a closed system and coolant fluid circulates without losses. Modern coolants are synthetic and designed for keeping their chemical qualities for a long long time. The only important point is using the specific coolant recommended by your manufactured. Only if your radiator is dripping or you see some loss of fluid level, you will have to take your automobile to the nearest repair shop. By the way, take specially care if your motor is overheating. The best way of destroying a motor without an accident is through a failure of the cooling system.

A third point of your car that has improved with technology are the wheels. Wheel alignments were common in the past, but in new vehicles it is only seldom necessary. Often only when you feel that your car is pulling to the left or to the right. Another different issue is the tire pressure. Tires should be kept inflated according to the recommendations of their manufactured.

Furthermore, check specifically your vehicle’s manual to keep your car tuned, but save on unnecessary and sometimes expensive services.

Exploring The Joys Of Miami Travel

Florida is a very popular vacation destination, and the city of Miami is one of the reasons for the State’s popularity. Located in southeastern Florida, Miami is a city that is known throughout the world. As such, the city also has a rich culture that includes a large population of Spanish-speaking residents. Due to its rich sampling of culture inspired from North America, South America, Central America, and the Caribbean, the city is often referred to as “The Gateway of the Americas.”

Enjoy a Mixture of Big City Life and Natural Beauty

Miami, Florida offers an amazing mixture of natural beauty and big city life opportunities. On one hand, the city has two national parks at its borders. To the east, visitors can visit the Biscayne National Park. Or, they can go west of the city to visit Everglades National Park. Miami is also home to numerous beaches and is actually the smallest of all of the major cities in the United States, with only 35.68 square miles of land area and a whopping 5.5 million residents.

In addition to all of its natural beauty, Miami is also a bustling metropolis. Currently, the city is undergoing a major boom and ranks second in the world in terms of building growth. The Miami skyline also ranks third in the country as most beautiful according to the 2006 Almanac of Architecture and Design, ranking only behind Chicago and New York City. When compared to other cities in the state, Miami is home to the five tallest skyscrapers in the state.

Easy Access to Miami

In addition to its beautiful natural scenery, rich culture, and fantastic entertainment options, Miami travel is also easy to engage in. In fact, the Port of Miami is one of the largest and most important ports in the country and is often referred to as the “Cruise Capital of the World.” This name was rightfully earned because the port has been an integral hub for some of the largest cruise lines and ships for over ten years.

Miami travel isn’t just restricted to cruises, however, as there is plenty to do within the city as well. Of course, if you are like most visitors, you will fly to the state, which means you will need to rent a vehicle for your stay. Luckily, renting a vehicle in Miami is easy to do because there are several Miami rental car agencies throughout the city. As with any car rental agency, you will save more money if you make reservations early and if you choose a vehicle that holds fewer passengers.

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