Whether you are a fresh graduate who has landed a first job or just simply someone who has to opportunity to buy a car, the process is never as nerve-racking as it is the first time. Buying a first car is far from easy, but is an unofficial rite of passage that ultimately grants you a great deal of experience. Although we may never find out who was the lucky tech college graduate who bought Karl Benzs first production car, you can read these six tips to help you with the process.
Set up a budget
This is primarily based on how much can you leave aside per month. In an ideal scenario you will be paying cash, but if you are considering a new car, the price will often require a certain aspect of financing. Determine your living costs by putting all the essentials like shelter, food, health insurance and social life in the first place. What remains is the amount you can spend on monthly payments, fuel, insurance and maintenance.
Consider your transportation needs
This is where you need to face the stark reality. A Mini John Cooper or Audi S1 are mean little speeders, but ask yourself if they are going to be useful as your daily, all-round means of transport. On the other hand, you might like a minivan or a SUV for its spaciousness and ability to pack all your stuff, but how often do you have to move everything you own? Consider the cost of fuel, registration fees and monthly parking, and buy only what you need.
Identify your priorities
On the contrary to the previous tip, the first purchase doesnt need to be the ultimate and absolutely the best car for you by all standards. On the other hand, you should make a want list, as you wont be buying a new car every two years. It is better to pay more for the features that will make you happy, than to be sorry before youve emptied the first tank of petrol. If what you want costs $40 per month more, go for it and skip a couple of happy hours.
Do the research
The fact that you are reading this points out that youve already started the research. Today, there is an amazing amount of information and insight on both new cars and the late models. With such a huge offer, it is often easiest (and in many cases best) to trust your gut instinct, or the gut instinct of someone you trust. If you run into someone who is driving a car you want, dont be shy to ask about their experience.
Locate a reliable dealer
Despite all the misgivings and anxiety, most salespersons on showrooms are just normal people who are good at selling good stuff. The dishonest ones mostly end up selling something less valuable. Although the new and late-model cars have never been more reliable, they still need attention. Let the showroom environment be your guidance and steer away from dealerships where two-thirds of the staff are idling around.
Book a test drive
Even with all online sources, nothing beats the old fashioned test drive. The seating position, accelerator responsiveness, visibility, layout of controls, and many more variables that make the feel behind the wheel are the most important for the decision process. Take it for at least half an hour spin and see what works for you. Note that high performance tyres enhance the cars ability to grip the road and make hard corners.
Low financing rates and hundreds of great cars in every niche to choose from make your options better than ever before. Although it might seem like an ordeal, the process of buying a car is a unique experience with a rewarding outcome.
Many people purchase used cars every year. It is estimated that tens of millions of used vehicles are purchased from a dealership as well as private parties. With so many vehicles available, it may be a challenge to discover the one that fits your individual driving needs. There are at least ten steps to consider when looking to purchase a used car.
It's important a person know how much they can put toward their used car purchase before they start looking. Car finance experts recommend that a person's car payment should not be over 20 percent of their take-home pay. Should a person's finances be tight, they may want to consider a lower percentage.
Once a person has determined the amount they can comfortably spend on a vehicle, they need to research what vehicles are within their price range. People with children will want larger cars and environmentally conscious single people with no children may want a hybrid. The good news is there are thousands of used vehicles available. There is a good chance a customer will find one to fit their individual situation.
3. Vehicle History Report
It's possible to buy a vehicle from a family member or close friend who is honest about its history. In most cases, it's recommended to get a vehicle history report. This is an important part of buying a used vehicle. Should you be interested in a vehicle that has a bad history, it's better to know as soon as possible.
4. Contact Seller
Once you see a car that gets your interest, it is important to contact the seller. The next step is to verify all of the information you've obtained about the car. This is a time to learn about any recent mechanical problems and more. This is also a good way to determine if the vehicle is still available to be purchased.
5. Vehicle Inspection
Should the vehicle be purchased through a private party, it is very important to have the vehicle inspected by a qualified mechanic. This can also be a good idea with certain types of vendors. If the seller isn't willing to permit such an inspection, it may be time to avoid the potential problems and move to another vehicle. Refusing an inspection makes the seller appear to be hiding something important about the car.
6. Test Drive
Test driving a used car is the most effective way to know if it is the car that will work for you. This is the time to personally assess a car's condition. Walk around the outside and see its exterior. Notice if it's easy to get in and out of the car. See how easy is is to make the seat, steering wheel, and other adjustments. Pay close attention to how the car handles when driving it.
7. Negotiate A Good Deal
Many people don't like talking numbers with a seller. This can be a good experience when a person has a plan. Be aware of anything that is wrong with the vehicle. Before the negotiations start, it's important to know how much to spend, and start with a very low offer. Try to meet a price in the middle between what price you offer and the seller initially offers.
Should a person be buying a car with financing, it's important they think about refusing a variety of extras that will be offered. Things such as rustproofing and etching need to be carefully considered. Warranties and insurance can be purchased from places other than a dealership and might be a much better price.
9. Don't Buy Today
It is important to resist any pressure from the seller for a quick sale. This pressure decreases significantly when a customer walks away. In many cases, a customer will get a better deal because the seller doesn't want them to possibly get a good deal with the competition. Demand that any offers be put in writing.
If buying from a dealership, a sales contract and financing paperwork may be involved. Insurance will have to be arranged. There will be fees for registrations, warranties as well as tax and more.
Think about what you want to improve about your car. Is it the acceleration? Is it the stopping power? Is it the ride quality? Is it the fuel consumption? It could be any number of things going on a spending spree at AutoZone or your favorite performance shop might not get you to your desired goal.
Estimated cost: $100-$300
Benefits: Improved acceleration and fuel economy
A cold air intake is the first and easiest mod that anyone can do in less than an hour. It consists of replacing the stock, restrictive air box for your cars intake. The premise is that by allowing air to flow naturally without any baffles or restrictions, your engine is able to breathe easier to access more air when needed, such as when using an on-ramp to join a highway. Depending on the design of the intake, you could just make it breathe hotter engine air, so try to select one that seals off the engine bay from the air filter area. These kits often come with a long-life air filters that require different maintenance and cleaning intervals for optimal performance.
If you find that you ford rivers or deal with significant downpours of rain, dont leave your intake exposed to the outside elements, or youll hydrolock your engine. (I did this once, #fail.)
Estimated cost: $250+
Benefits: Improved acceleration and fuel economy
Difficulty: Medium (seek an automotive shop for installation)
Along with a cold-air intake is the second mod that many people are very familiar with: exhaust upgrades. Assume for a moment that your engine is a water pump, sucking water in and pushing water out. You need to make sure that the pipes you have for your exhaust enable air to escape freely. If you do an intake upgrade, its a good idea to upgrade your exhaust. Aside from sound enhancements, it allows your engine to run more efficiently. Following my intake and exhaust upgrades, Ive seen about a 5% improvement in my fuel economy.
A cat-back exhaust system entails everything after the catalytic converter, so its completely legal to change .Not all Cat-Back Exhaust systems have to be obnoxiously loud. With the use of resonators and mufflers, it can still be high-flow and lower-volume but its safe to assume it will be significantly more noticeable than your stock exhaust system.
HIGH PERFORMANCE TIRES
Estimated cost: $500 $900
Benefits: Improved fuel economy and handling.
You regularly check the air pressure and wearing of your tires, right? If not, get in the habit of checking them at least once a week or so. Doing so will help you catch problems before they become disasters. That said, one way to improve fuel economy and handling is to invest in a good set of lower-resistance Summer Tires so you dont needlessly add more rolling resistance to your car.
Assess your driving behavior and situations to decide if these are appropriate. If you typically experience all four seasons, stick with an all-season/terrain tire.Im not suggesting you go nuts and get Mickey Thompsons on your car. Research the reviews from thousands of other drivers on tires on a site like TireRack, compare their UTOQ ratings and look into professional reviews of the tires when making your decision.
The citizens of New Orleans still havent forgot the drastic consequences of Hurricane Katrina. Only 11 years after Katrina disaster, the southern coast of the United States is nervously waiting for the arrival of Matthew and Nicole, the hurricanes that already created havoc on several Caribbean islands. If you live in a zone affected by hurricanes, you basically have two options: to hunker down, or to evacuate before it arrives.
Driving in a hurricane zone is definitely not the safest option. If youre stranded on the road when the wind and rain start lashing, you should immediately stop your car and go to the nearest shelter. If you by any chance need to drive through a hurricane area, youll need to take certain precautionary measures before you start your trip. These include:
1. Paper maps
Hurricanes often cause communication failures. When this happens, you wont be able to rely on your GPS navigation, which is why you should always carry a paper map of the local area as a backup. This way, youll be able to find your way and leave the hurricane area as quickly as possible.
2. Pack a special hurricane emergency kit
A hurricane emergency kit should contain:
- A space blanket it is light and it reflects heat, which means it is perfect for warming you up if you get wet;
- Towels to wipe yourself in case you get wet;
- A rain poncho to protect you from the rain;
- A first aid kit for cleaning and bandaging wounds and scrapes;
- A flashlight hurricanes often cause power cuts, so a flashlight can be particularly useful, as well as one or few sets of extra batteries;
- A Swiss knife it can be used for untying screws, opening bottles and cans, etc.
- A radio for listening to the NOAA weather forecast and determining a hurricanes path. You can also use your car or cell phone radio receiver;
- Food and water supply if you get stranded in a traffic jam for a long time;
3 Equip your car
Your vehicle needs to be well equipped for the hurricane season. If your car breaks down on a hurricanes path, youll be stranded at a very dangerous place. Thats why you should do a complete vehicle inspection on a regular basis.
The braking system is very important during wet weather rides. You should check brakes before the hurricane season. Pull on the side and press the brake pedal. If you feel that your pedal is too taut or you hear unusual squealing or grinding noises, take your car to a local car mechanic immediately. In order to make your rides safer, you should install top-quality bandix brakes.
Since driving on wet roads requires good tires, you should always have good all-season (or winter) tires with deep and solid tread patterns. Tire treads divert road water and protect your car from hydroplaning. When treads become shallower than 1/16th of an inch, you should immediately replace your tires.
4. Drive safely
If you by any chance find yourself driving in a hurricane zone, take these precautions:
- Slow down Leave a bigger buffer zone between your vehicle and the vehicle in front. This will give you more time to react if youre being buffeted by the wind.
- Grip the steering wheel firmly Grip it with both hands, keep your left hand in 9 oclock position and your right hand at 3 oclock.
- Expect wind gusts Sudden wind gusts can take you to the other lane. These usually occur when youre entering an exposed area, crossing an exposed bridge, driving a large or tall vehicle or sharing a road with large and tall trucks.
- Watch out for blowing objects and other road hazards Hurricanes can blow large and heavy objects into your path. Tree limbs can break your windshield and downed power lines can be very dangerous, especially if theyve fallen down on a flooded roadway.
Although some of these precautions can save you from road accidents and various other injuries, you should avoid driving your car in the areas affected by hurricanes. Finding a shelter by the roadside isnt easy, but you should have in mind that even the smallest shelter is safer than your car on the open road.
So my profile pic is of current car working on its not completely finished in this pic but I will be posting more up to date pics as we go and I will also be posting some before pics so you guys can see the changes made to it
Hello everyone, My name is Javier Vera I am the new ENEOS Sales Agent for the West Coast. Please reach out to me regarding your next car event so I can attend and maybe bring out our ENEOS booth with promotional items.
We are also looking for retailers who might be interested in carrying our oils and transmission fluids.
ENEOS Motor Oil
Owning a car has a lot of responsibilities that come with it, and in order to drive safely, and to be able to control your car without any trouble, you will need the right tires. However, you should not neglect the differences in type and size, because either can greatly influence how your car will behave on the road.
Winter tire characteristics
Using only summer tires
Universal tires for all season
Selecting the right tire for your car
Proper tire care and maintenance
Which one to choose in the end?
In my last blog I mentioned the trials and tribulations of a drag racer in the world of commercial truck drivers. I am not an expert on laws regarding transportation. I am just a drag racer who wants to be legal and I am writing this to show a real world experience of what it is like behind the wheel of a big rig. I have a huge amount of respect for commercial drivers, but it was never my goal to be one. I am not sure why I didnt become one as I really enjoy driving cross country and seeing new things and meeting people. But nowadays, if you are a professional drag racer, and drive a rig bigger than a pickup and an open trailer, you have to become a commercial driver. The Department of Transportation (DOT) officers have taken a good, hard look at us and decided we need to become classified as professional truck drivers. They feel that we need to pay our fair share. They have suffered budget cutbacks and they have large pensions to pay, so they need new ways to bring funds into their departments. So they passed a few laws that incorporate us drag racers into their programs, and once you are in their program, you pay and pay.
Remember, I am writing this blog as a racer driving on the road. I am the guy pulling into the weigh stations because if I drive by I could get pulled over. I know a lot of guys just drive by the scales and inspection stations, and I used to also. But now I have a huge Currie Enterprises logo with pictures of race cars on the side of the trailer, and it is kind of hard to say I am not a pro driver. Now I get to interact with the DOT officers and when I get pulled in the first thing they want to see is my Commercial license (CDL) and my DOT and IFTA paperwork. Then they want to see my log book and maybe my medical card.
Last month, while driving through New Mexico, one of the DOT officers decided to put me through a safety inspection. She weighed the truck, checked all the lights, windshield wipers, lug nuts, brakes, steering and everything under the hood. She wrote me a fix-it ticket for my window washer being out of fluid. Then she gave me a lecture on my log book being too sloppy. Sure, the info was correct and filled out, but she didnt like the way I did it and insisted that I buy a ruler so I could fill it out in a more orderly manner. I asked her if it was incorrect, and she answered, No, I just dont like the way it looks. You can see that a lot of the rules depend on how that officer feels that day.
Stay tuned for my next blog as I will tell you a story that has racers shaking their heads in dis-belief. I will share just how crazy the DOT officers can get, and how the power has gone to their heads. Look out, racers; they want your money and they dont care how they get it.