Thursday, October 28, 2010

At the Auto Body Shop

Here is just a bit of what goes on when you bring your car in for body work. You can trust the pros at Corby's Collision!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

When Do You Need a Body Shop?

If you have never had occasion to use an auto body shop before, you might wonder why you would ever need one. However, there are various reasons to take your vehicle to a professional company in order to improve its appearance. Find out some possible reasons to visit such a business.

If you are planning on selling your car anytime soon, you want it to look in the best shape possible. A car in excellent condition can sell for a lot more than one in good or fair condition, and a great paint job can often bump it up into the next category. If your automobile has scratches and chips all over from regular wear and tear over the years, it is time to let a professional fix it up before you sell it. The higher price you will likely get for it is usually more than what you will pay to fix it at an auto body shop.

In some cases, you might choose to have a completely new paint job. This can be the best route for an automobile that has several scratches, especially if it is difficult to exactly match the color. You may instead opt for a completely new look, getting a different color paint to revitalize your car. This might be particularly attractive if you have had your vehicle for years since just because you liked a certain shade years ago does not mean you still like it.

If you have been in a car accident, either recently or in the past, it is important to get the damage fixed at a professional auto body shop. Driving an automobile that has major damage can be dangerous and may cause further destruction to the rest of the vehicle. Even if you only have a little damage, it is important to get it repaired as soon as possible. Not only is this safer, but you can be much prouder of a vehicle in great shape than one with dents and structural issues. This is true whether you plan to sell it or soon, or hold onto it as long as you can.
Clearly, heading to a reputable auto body shop can help anyone with a vehicle. Whether you want to sell your automobile soon, eventually, or never, you can still use the services of a professional to get it in the best shape possible. If you want to improve your car's appearance, check out the shops nearest you.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Can I fix it myself?

Ok, so you just got in an accident. Albeit, it was a minor one (fender benders usually are), you now have to worry about how much it's going to cost to fix it, or if you can fix it yourself. Or maybe you're thinking it's such a small dent that you don't even need any auto body repair.

Well, before you consider sticking with it so that you can save money, you might want to take into account that many car experts highly recommend you repair any and all dents immediately. The reasoning behind this is that the exposed metals become more vulnerable to rust damage, and/or your bumper may have come loose in the collision which could cause serious problems for you later on.

Small dents can cost as low as $50 to repair anyways so it's probably worth it in the end, but the price will depend on the make of your car and the dent size.

Can I repair a fender bender myself?

There are ways to fix a fender bender yourself, but this is generally tricky and you may not even end up with a quality repair! One do-it-yourself method is to fill the dent with body filler and then sand it down with sand paper. This might sound easy, but the whole process can end up taking 5 hours or more, especially if you have no auto body repair experience! This method also requires that you complete it in one go, so if you're planning on going this route make sure you set aside a big chunk of time.

Another interesting option is to try pulling the dent out with a backhoe. However, if you don't have a backhoe on hand or know how to operate one this isn't going to be your best option, and it is especially not the safest!

Why you need to call a professional

More than likely you probably don't want to spend hours of your free time trying to figure out how to sandpaper your own dent, or have a back hoe on hand ready to go. Even if you do, why go through all that hassle when an auto body repair professional is just a phone call away? You can get a free repair estimate online before you go in so that you know what to expect.

Shannon Egan

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You Tube ~ Hunter Alingment

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tips on Why Wheel Alignment is Important

It takes only a small misalignment to create problems with your vehicle, which is why proper wheel alignment is important. Simply put, all of components that make your vehicle go straight are called alignment. Misalignment can be caused by many factors including merely driving your vehicle. Potholes can be common culprits. A sizable pothole can bump your suspension out of the precisely calculated set of measurements that dictate proper wheel alignment.
Why is wheel alignment important?
Improper wheel alignment can effect driving performance as well as cost you money. Total alignment sets all four wheels positioned straight ahead and parallel. The following are benefits of wheel alignment:
  • Improves gas mileage. In the recent economy and a year of outrageous gas prices, everyone is looking to better their gas mileage to save money. By having your vehicle aligned properly, it decreases any resistance while rolling which increases your gas mileage. It is also important to make sure that your tires are properly inflated as this will help gas mileage as well.

  • Reduces tire wear. Premature tire wear can be costly. One of the signs of wheel misalignment is excessive or uneven tire wear. If your vehicle is not aligned properly, your tires can show wear more quickly due to their not rolling straight and being dragged in the wrong direction. You will have to replace them more often, costing you more. Proper alignment can save you money in the long run.

  • Improves the handling of your vehicle. Other signs of improper alignment pertain to the handling of our vehicle. These signs can be if your steering wheel pulls to the left or right, if it is not centered when driving straight ahead or if it vibrates or shimmies. Steering wheel vibration can also indicate tire wear or if they have not been inflated properly. While driving, your vehicle can also have a feeling of looseness or wandering. All of these signs can be corrected with total alignment which can absorb any road shock and provide a smoother ride.

  • Improves safety. Proper wheel alignment can help you drive more safely by improving steering and tracking problems. The improved handling and control of your vehicle can help you prevent or avoid accidents.

Why is four-wheel alignment recommended?

Simply put, your front wheels "steer" or drive the vehicle while the rear wheels "direct" the vehicle. Four-wheel alignment solves handling problems by referencing all four wheels to a common centerline.

Yearly maintenance is recommended.

Regular vehicle maintenance is recommended for optimal operation of your vehicle and its safety. It is important that you follow the vehicle manufacturer's recommendations listed in your owner's manual, however as a general rule your wheel alignment and tire check up should be scheduled every 10,000 miles or at least once per year.

Often a suspension system inspection can be included as a part of this regular maintenance. This inspection can allow your ASE Certified Technician to spot potential problems or worn parts now before they become costly problems later.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

What You Need To Know About Airbags

All cars these days have at least a driver's side air bag. This is an important safety device which will allow you to stay safe in case of a collision. What happens is when you run into something a signal will be issued through your car to the deployment mechanism. It will be deployed through the use of compressed gas. The bag will deploy instantly and will help to keep you from going through the windshield or hitting your head on the steering wheel. There are a few other things you will need to know about them to maintain safety.

Changing Driving Habits
While air bags are designed to keep you safe in case of an accident, there are certain things you should be doing in order to keep yourself safe when you are driving in a car that has air bags, The first thing you need to be aware of is how close you are sitting to the steering wheel. It is designed to inflate to full capacity. It will not make concessions for people that prefer to drive with their chest right up to the steering wheel. If this is the way that you drive, you are likely to come away from the accident with a broken nose at least.

The recommendation of the industry is that when driving cars with air bags that you drive at least an arms distance from the steering wheel. This will leave a significant gap between yourself and the air bag. This way when there is an accident, you will fall into the bag rather than the bag pushing you back from where you are sitting in the seat. If it is a height thing, consider elevating the seat or using a pillow under you so that you will be elevated rather than moving closer to the wheel.

Another thing you should watch out for is the way you grip the wheel. This is because if you are holding the wheel in such a manner where your arm crosses the middle of the steering wheel, you will run the risk of your arm being broken when they are deployed. The old standards of 10 and 2 still apply for more reasons than just making sure that you are keeping both hands on the wheel at the same time.

Getting Air Bags Inspected
It is a good idea to get the air bag system inspected from time to time. This is because you do not want for the system to malfunction at any given time. Remember that you do not want to get the system inspected too often of you run the risk of the system malfunctioning as well as the fact that you will spend a lot of money unnecessarily. You should, however get the system check at least every five years if it has not been used. This will make sure that the gas is ready to go and that the bag is still packed correctly.

Monday, October 11, 2010

What Happens When An Airbag Goes Off?

Most people simply take for granted and have little appreciation for the technology that's contained in an automotive safety airbag. Still yet, another commonality that virtually all people share is the collective desire that their airbag goes unused for the life of their vehicle.

Consider this. Of all the parts on your car, only your airbag is designed and manufactured to have a zero tolerance failure rate. This means that if there is one part on your car that simply must work when it is called on to do so with "no exception", that is your airbag.
So then just what are the series of events that transpire to inflate your airbag in the event of an accident? Also how are all of the components designed to be foolproof and at the tail end, what actually happens when an airbag goes off.

Amazingly, believe it not, it is a relatively sizable explosion that happens just inches from a person's face that actually inflates the airbag itself. This is the very reason why, in spite of the concept being around since the 1950s, it took years for working models to be developed.
The difficulty all along has been how to contain and control an explosion of this magnitude, so close to a person's face. In a fraction of a second, the explosion goes off, fills the bag and then is safely dissipated. All in the time it takes you to snap your fingers.

It all begins with a sensor that is designed to be tripped by inertia. A simple description would be a metal ball contained in a tube that is forced forward by the force of an impact. A device of this type is foolproof because it requires the sudden stop of forward motion to be activated.

In a fraction of a second, before the occupant who's involved in the crash has time to make contact with the dashboard of their vehicle, an electrical impulse is sent from the sensor to the trigger located inside the airbag. The explosion is then activated.

It's not a normal explosion as one might imagine. You see, rather than a heat activated reaction, such as you would see when a firecracker explodes, a chemical reaction is used. It's the same type of explosion you would see if you were to drop Alka-Seltzer tablets in a bottle of soda pop.
Sodium aside and potassium nitrate are combined to instantly create a large volume of nitrogen gas that fills the airbag. So heat is a byproduct as this chemical reaction is exothermic but nowhere near the amount of heat as other explosive reactions would produce.

So now the bag is filled. However; one problem that had hindered the development of Airbags for so long was preventing the bag itself from causing injuries. Yes it's a soft bag but just like water, when it is impacted at a high speed, it has the same effect as hitting concrete.

The problem was solved by developing an airbag that has a series of holes in it. These gas release holes are sized and positioned in such a way that they allow the bag to be filled as quickly as is needed, yet deflate and recess as the person's body impacts it.

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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Collision Body Repair

Auto collisions are one of the leading causes of vehicle damage. They are unfortunate incidents that damage outer auto body the most and also cause technical problems in automobiles. However you cannot stop all those unfortunate incidents to be happened, you can actually get your vehicle back in its shape and working condition with the help of some experts automobile collision repair services that are dedicated to help those who are seeking a professional help to take care of their damaged vehicles.

Collision body repair is not an easy task to do as it sounds; it is a complicated process that needs expert hands and a long experience to be done right. Automobiles are complex machines that are made up of various parts with every single part performing its own unique task making a machine fully functional to serve you in its best condition. There is also a big role of the outer body of the machine that has its own importance in making a machine successful on the roads. So, experience and expertise is all that is required to repair a vehicle after an incident of collision.

When it comes to repair a damaged vehicle after a collision, a professional Automobile collision repair service can help you to get your vehicle back in its full working condition. They help you fix auto body damage of all kinds ranging from door dings, fender benders, unibody and frame repair, bumper repairs, paint less dent repairs, hail damage repairs to all paint color matching and custom painting repair services. With the help of their latest tool and technology, they help you a lot to fix your vehicle the way it should be fixed and to your satisfaction. With the expertise to do auto body repair on foreign as well as domestic vehicles, they also offer you expert assistance in claiming insurance for your damages.

Professional collision repair services always give you satisfying results and your car a rejuvenating look that enhance the beauty of your vehicle forever! They straighten unibody and frame damage to factory specifications to help you feel relaxed knowing your vehicle will drive correctly after the repair. By offering paint less dent repair, towing scheduling, accident report assistance, insurance claim negotiations and many more, they help you to make your life easy even after an unfortunate incident and your vehicle in its previous condition to actually return the safety, structure and appearance of your vehicle to factory specifications to ensure your safety on the road.

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Monday, October 4, 2010

How Do Generic Aftermarket Batteries Compare with Name Brand Batteries?

Do aftermarket batteries have the same capability and longevity as their branded counterparts? In a simple word - yes - but what aftermarket batteries bring to customers (in addition to long life performance and similar technical ratings and components) is affordability.

Big brand companies get big in terms of sales and number of units sold for four reasons - product availability and reliability, marketing and advertising on a mass scale, and the ability to fulfill their product to customers. Overtime these four components will turn any company into a Big Brand - but at a price. There is a direct association between the price of product and the company's cost. The lower the costs the lower the price - the higher the costs the higher the price you will have to pay.

As a customer of batteries what is mission critical is that your device (whether it is a laptop, PDA, two-way radio, power tool, or flashlight) works on battery power. Your device does not care whether you have a big brand battery name on it or a generic aftermarket battery!
What is important to your device is that your voltage, capacity, chemistry, and all the internal and external components meet the specific design needs of your device. For example take Apple's EC003 (the iPod Mini). The iPod Mini requires the following technical requirements:

  • The exact physical dimensions for the battery compartment

  • Lithium Ion Chemistry

  • 3.7 volts

  • a minimum of 400 mAh

  • the necessary hardware (connector, fuse, charge and discharge FETs, cell pack, sense resistor, primary and secondary protection ICs, fuel-gauge IC, thermistor, PC board, and the EEPROM or firmware for the fuel-gauge IC)

Now outside of the above technical requirements the iPod Mini does not care if the battery comes from Apple or any other third party just as long as it is "100% OEM Compatible and Guaranteed to meet or exceed OEM specifications".

So if aftermarket replacement batteries are "100% OEM Compatible and Guaranteed to meet or exceed OEM specifications" AND if aftermarket batteries are considerably lower in price why do people opt to buy OEM or branded batteries? Because consumers have been conditioned to buy the big brands because of the clever marketing and advertising that marketers pour over and over consumers.

Now I'm sure one may come with the argument that aftermarket batteries have a higher failure rate then branded batteries - but I can tell you that having been a direct part of the aftermarket and BIG brand market for 13 years (with various companies) - every manufacture and company has defects. It is a part of manufacturing regardless of the manufacturer's name. Acceptable defect rates float between 1-2% of all units shipped. In manufacturing there is no such thing as 0% defect rate. That is why you have a product warranty with parts (money back periods and extended warranty periods).

So now since the aftermarket or NON-OEM batteries have a low defect rate, low product cost, and the exact same specs as the OEMs the only thing that would stop you from buying aftermarket batteries is your marketing condition and the size of your wallet!

By: Dan Hagopian
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