Saturday, June 29, 2013

Inside IIHS: Side Testing

In "Inside IIHS: Side testing," learn about the Institute's moving deformable side impact crash test barrier, the criteria IIHS uses to determine a vehicle's side rating, and the evolution of side crash protection.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Inside IIHS: Rating booster seats

In "Inside IIHS: Rating booster seats," see how children's boosters are evaluated for belt fit with the help of a child-size dummy. This video also reviews which children need to use booster seats and how parents can tell whether a booster is doing its job.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Safety Tips for Your Summer Road Trips

Now that summer is in full swing, plenty of people are packing up their vehicles and getting ready for long road trips. Since the advent of the automobile, road trips have been a favorite past-time of people the world over. But, while safety isn't exactly the first thing anyone thinks of before a road trip, it's definitely an aspect that shouldn't be ignored. There's a few things you can do to make sure your road trip goes smoothly and safely, both before and during your trip. With any luck, knowing these helpful tips will get you to your destination and back unharmed.

Before You Leave

Obviously, the first thing you need to look at before a road trip is your vehicle. If your vehicle is in any way unreliable or in need of repair, consider renting a car. Otherwise, take your car in for a pre-trip checkup. Have the oil and filters changed, washer fluid refilled, and brakes checked for integrity. It's far better to have to cancel a road trip due to a needed repair than to find out you need that repair a thousand miles from home.

Tires are another item on your car that will require inspection. Check the tread on your tires, make sure that they aren't wearing thin and in danger of getting holes. Sometimes debris can embed itself in the rubber of a tire and not cause a flat until much later down the road, make sure yours are free of such debris. Check your spare as well, ensure that it's inflated properly and that you have all the proper tools to install it.

Finally, assemble a road kit, if you haven't already gotten one. Find a box or bag you don't mind leaving in the car and fill it with items you know will come in handy in an emergency. A flashlight, jumper cables, first aid kit and flares are essential items, and you might also include blankets, water and a small food supply in case you end up stranded overnight. Consider also putting a prepaid cellphone in your emergency kit. Not only could it save you from being out of contact with anyone, if your car gets stolen the police might be able to track it via the GPS chip in the phone.

On The Trip

First of all, don't make the same mistake plenty of people make, and get plenty of sleep both before and during your trip. If you don't have another driver to switch off with, make sure you stop and sleep if you start getting tired. More accidents are caused by drowsiness than by intoxicated drivers, for the most part.

Don't attempt to save time by eating on the go, or doing anything else behind the wheel besides driving for that matter. While you might shave thirty minutes here and an hour there, if you end up wrecked on the side of the road because you couldn't pull over to program your GPS, the point is effectively moot.

Take plenty of rest stops, and don't be afraid to stop and smell the roses. Even though you might not be physically tired, it's a good idea to give your brain a rest from the road every now and again in order to keep yourself alert. It doesn't hurt to stretch your legs every few hundred miles either.

If you're taking kids, make sure you bring plenty of distractions. DVD's and video games if your car is equipped to handle them, but books, magazines and toys are also a good way to stave off boredom. Don't be afraid to try a few road games, you might be surprised not only at how well they work for keeping kids occupied, but for helping to keep your mind on the road as well.

Have Fun!

Safety shouldn't prevent you from having fun on a road trip. On the contrary, it should make sure that you're willing and able to have as much fun as possible. Follow the simple tips above, get plenty of rest, and don't be afraid to get lost, and you'll likely have the trip you can look back on fondly for the rest of your life.

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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Top Reasons Car Accidents Happen

Road accidents are one of the leading causes of sudden death in the United States. They can occur at any moment and in any situation, but there are some causes of vehicular accidents that stand out most often. With each of these instances there are steps that can be taken to prevent an accident from occurring.

Most Common Car Accidents Causes

· Driver fatigue: Exhausted drivers are unsafe drivers. Accidents resulting from driver fatigue are most common from 11PM to 8AM. It is best to just avoid driving at these late hours. However, if you must drive it is imperative that you stay alert. Take frequent stops for rest or food and if you feel yourself getting sleepy, pull over and rest.

· Inebriated drivers: Drivers under the influence are dangerous. Their recklessness causes tragic fatalities. If you see a driver that you suspect is drunk or under the influence call your local police immediately and avoid the vehicle.

· Inclement weather: Bad weather limits vision. Vision accounts for 90% of a driver's ability to react. When vision is limited, reaction time is equally limited. This means whenever the weather is bad you must slow down and increase your following distances. If it gets too dangerous, pull over. A fifteen minute break is less inconvenient than a car accident.

· Speeding: High speeds mean drivers are less able to react, and that when accidents do occur they are more severe. Even when the road is sparsely populated it is important to maintain a reasonable speed. This ensures that if something suddenly happens on the road you will be able to act accordingly and avoid a tragic accident.

· Distracted drivers: This is the leading cause of car accidents. Drivers who are distracted have the inability to react to changes in the road. Rubbernecking, or taking your eyes off the road to inspect an existing accident, is one of the most common sources of distracted driver accidents. Other common distractions that lead to accidents include: glancing out the windows to look at scenery, interacting with passengers or children in the car, playing with the radio/music while driving, and preening while driving. It is important to pay attention while driving, and keep your eyes on the road as much as possible.

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If your car is damaged in a car accident, Corby's Collision can help you get back on the road fast! We have been in business for 47 years in Vacaville, California. When you do business with us you will not only deal with their qualified and professional staff but, also with Paul himself. He is an Owner/Operator and likes to be "hands on" with everything that goes in and out of the shop.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Car Innovations for Safety and Convenience

Automakers are coming up with new electronics to make cars safer like collision-warning systems. blind-spot monitoring and inflatable seat belts. And new systems make inflating tires much easier.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Inside IIHS: The Crash Propulsion System

In "Inside IIHS: The crash propulsion system," learn about the crash test machinery that can propel a vehicle down any of the Vehicle Research Center's three runways and crash it into another vehicle or a barrier.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Inside IIHS: Rear Testing for Whiplash Prevention

In "Inside IIHS: Rear testing for whiplash prevention," find out how the Institute simulates rear crashes to assess how well vehicle seats and head restraints prevent whiplash. Meet the specialized crash test dummy used in these dynamic tests.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Car Colors And Personal Choices

If you look at the stories on car colors and the popular shades available in the color spectrum, you'll see that white, followed by silver and black, has been a persistent choice for new car buyers. Of all cars sold in America, almost a quarter are white. In Asia, it seems that silver is more predominant while in Europe, somber black is more popular. This trend, specially the preference for white, has been popular only since the 90s. Before that, there was a more colorful array of cars, with red, green and orange vehicles common on U.S. roads.

It would take a sociologist or some other specialist to accurately speculate about color trends. Evidently though, external factors make people prefer some colors to others. For example, some colors, like gray, have become known to be less visible during dusk. This is a time when drivers have not yet turned on their headlights and daylight has become twilight. Maroon also seems to disappear as night falls, and anecdotal reports of dark or dull cars being more accident-prone may have become a reason why colors like these aren't so popular in cars nowadays.

You'll find some sites with table correlating some value or characteristic to particular colors. For example, red is supposed to be for dynamic, high-energy people, while yellow is for intelligent and comfort loving folk. Black would be for empowered, elegant business types while silver are for future-looking dudes. We can't say that there isn't any grain of truth to these classifications, but with white being a perennial favorite for several years, should we say that a majority of motoring enthusiasts are fastidious people? Because that's what a lot of racing cars are painted with. White. There is a more practical reason to that though. White makes a terrific background for all those sponsorship decals and inspection of car parts for leaks or damage is easier if a car's engine compartment or underchassis is white.

Dupont and PPG, both major paint suppliers to automotive manufacturers, have been keeping meticulous records on what colors sold most in years and decades past. Their data shows that people buyers are quite exacting in their color choices, although some consumer surveys indicate that a wider range of colors would be welcome too. Maybe the somber mood borne by not-so-optimistic economic news is affecting color choices too, which is why neutral tones are prevalent. But then, with more car owners opting to keep their cars longer, safe color choices will not look dated after just a few years.

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Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Why Your Dirty Transmission Needs To Be Flushed

How long have you owned your vehicle? Does it still shift through to each gear smoothly and quietly? Has your car or truck been making strange noises, slipping gears, or surging unexpectedly? If any of this sounds familiar to you, it may be time to have the automatic transmission cleaned and flushed to restore performance and help protect it from costly repairs. Transmission repairs can be some of the most expensive you will ever encounter, especially if the entire transmission has to be replaced. Repairs of this nature could potentially cost thousands of dollars. Why not give your vehicle's transmission the best chance for a long life by maintaining it properly and having an automatic transmission flush performed at the suggested maintenance intervals.

A clean transmission with clean fluid is a beautiful thing. Transmission fluid is the life blood of the system which runs through all the essential parts of an automatic transmission including the torque converter, transmission pump, ATF cooler, and the cooler lines. Like many other systems, the automatic transmission produces an extraordinary amount of heat which causes the fluid to break down over time. There is also the added problem of debris, gunk, and varnish which can all contribute to shifting problems and overall poor performance. Too much debris can actually block the free flow of fluid which can definitely cause performance problems. It's important that a transmission be able to sustain enough pressure to stay in gear. A dirty transmission that blocks the flow of fluid can cause a loss of hydraulic pressure which may result in gear slippage. Problems such as these can be cleared away with a full service transmission flush.

A transmission flush isn't a very lengthy process and won't put too much of a hurt on your pocket book. Having this preventive maintenance procedure performed at scheduled intervals will give you the best chance of preventing an expensive transmission breakdown. A good, full service transmission flush will include a cleaning solution and conditioner in addition to replacing the transmission fluid. As we mentioned before, a dirty transmission can cause all sorts of performance problems. The cleaning solution will break up any sludge or debris within the transmission system so it can be flushed out. The conditioner is a great addition because it helps to restore pliability of the seals to help prevent any leakage. Finally, brand new transmission fluid will be added to the system until all the old contaminated fluid is gone.

As a general rule of thumb, it is suggested that an automatic transmission flush be performed every 2 years or every 30,000 miles. Of course you should always check your owner's manual for maintenance recommendations specific to your vehicle. When dealing with a system like the transmission with so many moving parts that depend on good quality fluid for proper lubrication, it's important to take preventive maintenance seriously. If your vehicle's transmission is shifting smoothly and quietly, don't take it for granted. Make sure it stays that way by investing in a transmission flush from time to time.

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Sunday, June 2, 2013

Regular Car Paint Maintenance Delays Visit To A Repair Shop

Even with tougher top coats and more weather-resistant formulation, vehicle paints are still subjected to relentless bombardment by the sun's rays, acids in the air and salt, tar and debris thrown up from the road. In time, even the best paint from the most exacting car manufacturers will develop tiny swirls, hazing and other defects which contribute to making your car lose its showroom luster. At this point, you may think that a visit to an auto body repair shop is the way to go to restore your car's finish.

In time, all cars that see regular use on the road will need to visit an auto body repair shop for a respray. As a car owner, being more mindful of paint maintenance will prolong that inevitable visit. And even if you think that you can get away from this by selling your car every few years, you still need to perform some exterior and paint maintenance if you hope to get the best resale value possible.

The most economical way for automotive paint maintenance is to wash your vehicle on a regular basis. While some car maintenance tips advise washing your car once a month, a car that is a daily driver will accumulate grime and contaminants quite fast and these will combine to not only eat into the paint's finish but also corrode some underchassis components, possibly leading to unscheduled maintenance. If you want to lessen the chances of visiting your auto body repair shop or mechanic, wash your car weekly if possible. Beyond washing, other basic paint maintenance that you should perform should be waxing. As you may have noticed, a freshly-waxed surface provides more than just a glossy appearance. A shell is also formed which helps bead water and resists contaminants and debris.

There is a huge and sometimes confusing array of automotive waxes and polishes. Take a group of people who do their own paint maintenance, and most everyone will have something different to recommend. There are liquid waxes, paste waxes and what seems to be de riguer these days, clay bars to even out your paint. As you go further down the product shelf, there will be formulations that will seem to belong more to an auto body repair or refinishing shop than on a shelf in your garage.

If your car is a daily driven commuter car, then there is no need to go use the most expensive products and procedures for maintaining your car's finish. Any of the better-known brands that are available at superstores will do. But if you have a special project car or a high-end car, then a little more care is necessary. If that kind of paint maintenance is beyond your ken, then that is what detailing shops are for.

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