Summer Detailing

 

 

1. Prevent UV Damage to Paintwork

As you know, the sun’s rays are what make the beautiful people of the world so tan. What it also does is penetrate and weaken your car’s clear coat layer. Over time, this can lead to complete degradation and harm the pigment layer of your paintwork, causing discoloration or fading. Either way, it’s not fun. Plus it’s easily preventable with a sealant or wax. Before summer hits, I recommend sealing with a long lasting paint sealant ASAP to stay ahead of the game. If you do so now, exterior UV damage simply wont happen.

2. Prepare For Interior UV Damage

Those of you with leather seats already know how hot the sun can get on a bright day. What you might not know is that not all car windows have UV protection – meaning your dashboard, seats, and other exposed surfaces are getting damaged by the sun. While it may not be visible right away, overtime the sun can discolor and crack softer interior surfaces such as plastic, vinyl, and leather. It looks terrible and fixing it means a costly and time consuming leather restoration process (gluing, respraying, etc.). Do your interior a favor and condition each surface before the heat shows up. Remember, don’t use a dressing, as these just coat the surface rather than providing nutrients.

3. Reverse Fading Exterior Plastic

Similar to UVs damaging your paintwork, your plastic trim can pay quite the price come summer time. If you haven’t noticed before, take a picture in spring time, then again in the fall – summer will have gradually lightened any dark plastic exterior surface that wasn’t protected. Fortunately, most of these effects are easily fixed with a conditioner. If you seal the surfaces with a plastic sealant before summer, you’ll have to do much less upkeep come August and September.

4. Stop Tires From Cracking

When left untreated, tires begin to fade and crack much like the other exterior surfaces of your vehicle. Unfortunately, tires are a deep black, attracting sunlight anyway they can. Also, being rubber, they’re much more susceptible to damage and discoloration. To prevent cracking and fading (which is reversible), use a tire conditioner (not a dressing) at least twice a month to keep the surface looking rich and natural. You may think it’s unnoticeable, but you’d be surprised how much the quality of your tires can be enhanced just by a quick 2 minute application.

5. Get Rid Of Mutilated Bug Carcases

Bugs and heat go together much like one of those annoying vuvuzelas at a game your favorite team happens to be losing. As if you weren’t upset enough, some goof has to go off piercing your ear drums? Well, not so similarly, bugs smash into your car while your driving and then the sun happens to cook them. Yum. In all seriousness, these bug splats can begin to etch the surface if heat is allowed to cake them on – and the longer they’re on, the harder they are to remove. The bottom line here is to provide a barrier of protection specifically against the little buggers, and when they do come in contact with your car, get them off sooner rather than later with a detail spray.

As you now know, these detailing tips are only suggestions based on common occurrences come summer. It’s important to know that any problems you run into are preventable with the right car care products, and at the end of the day the fact remains that we all experience unique issues that require equally unique detailing solutions

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How to Avoid Getting Ripped Off by an Mechanic

 

5 Ways to Avoid Getting Scammed by an Auto Mechanic

When your car breaks down, you want to get it fixed and back on the road right away. Most of us rely heavily on our car, and being without it for even a single day is a big inconvenience.

When you do suffer an unexpected breakdown, you depend on a mechanic to fix your car properly and charge you fairly for parts and labor. Unfortunately, some mechanics are less than honest, and you need to keep your eyes open and wits about you to avoid getting taken for a ride. Here are some tips you can use to avoid car repair rip-offs.

1. Insist that the Mechanic Gives You an Up-Front Estimate

Never drop your car off at the mechanic and give them carte blanche to fix your car. Instead, ask the mechanic to evaluate the vehicle while you’re there and give you an estimate of the repair bill.

It’s also a good idea to insist that the mechanic call you and get your permission if the actual cost is more than the estimate you were given. This is the best way to avoid being overcharged, and the heads-up will give you a chance to make an intelligent and informed decision.

2. Ask the Mechanic for Your Old Parts

Some dishonest mechanics will charge for parts replacements they never actually performed. The best way to expose this scam and avoid this kind of rip-off is to always insist on taking your old parts with you after servicing.

When your mechanic calls to tell you which parts need to be replaced, let them know you will want the old parts. That could be enough to discourage a less-than-ethical auto mechanic from overcharging you on parts.

3. Brush Up on Basic Auto Mechanics

It’s much harder for a shady mechanic to rip-off customers who know their way around a car. If you don’t know which end of the dipstick goes into the engine, that dishonest mechanic will see you coming a mile away. Taking the time to learn about your car and how it works is the best way to protect yourself.

You don’t have to take an automotive class to gain this knowledge. Just grab your owner’s manual, open the hood and familiarize yourself with the parts you see. The more you know, the harder it will be to get ripped off.

4. Ask Friends and Family for Mechanic Referrals

The best defence against getting ripped-off by a mechanic is to find one you can trust. If you do not have a regular mechanic, ask family, friends and coworkers who they use and if they’re happy with the service they receive.

The best mechanics rely on word-of-mouth to get new customers. They know that treating drivers fairly is the best long-term business strategy, and they work hard to provide good value and excellent car repairs for everyone they work with.

5. Double-Check the Price of New Auto Parts

If the price of a replacement part seems unreasonably high, call the dealer or check online to make sure it’s correct. Some mechanics try to inflate their bills by overcharging customers for parts, so checking prices independently is the best way to protect yourself.

Don’t be afraid to confront the mechanic if you think you’ve been overcharged for parts. You have a right to quality service and fair prices whenever you get your car repaired.

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Winter Detailing

 

Winter detailing is all about prevention. Ideally one should clean their vehicle as often as possible to ensure no build-up of road salt on painted surfaces. The longer road salt stays on a vehicle’s surface, the more time the salt has to eat away at your wax’s protective elements. Taking advantage of warmer temperatures to wax your vehicle with durable car wax or paint sealant will ensure minimal loss of protection throughout the season. During winter it is also crucially important to minimize contact with the paint. What this means is DO NOT remove snow from your vehicle’s painted surfaces with an ice scraper or brush. This is one of the most damaging things you can do to your vehicle, which can result in heavy swirling and scratching of your paint. Using some sort of heating element or hot water will safely melt the snow without damaging your paint.

If you must remove the snow on your vehicle, use a microfiber towel and gently and slowly use downwards motions, starting at the top of the vehicle and moving downwards with each stroke. This ensures you are not introducing dirt from the bottom of the vehicle to the upper portions of the vehicle.

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