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After one of the harshest winters in memory, America’s northern extremities are finally starting to thaw out. Along with chirping birds and sunshine, spring has brought warmer temperatures. But just because nice weather has arrived doesn’t mean you should ignore vehicle maintenance.
Stroll down the oil aisle of a typical auto-parts store and you’ll be confronted with a literal wall of lubricant.
Car owners nationwide are taking advantage of complimentary or prepaid maintenance programs.
Unfortunately, new cars don’t stay new and it comes a time when parts need to be replaced. If you’ve just bought a new set of wheels and are curious what might go wrong first, the team at J.D. Power and Associates has compiled a top 10 list of the most commonly replaced vehicle components after three years of ownership.
Based on data gathered from its 2013 Vehicle Dependability Study, the following components were replaced by the highest percentage of owners in the 12 months leading up to when the survey was conducted.
Coming in 10th place were fuses, requiring replacement by 0.8 percent of those participating in the survey. Compared to last year, that’s a 0.4 percent improvement. Most fuses used in automobiles are blade fuses, also known as spade or plug-in fuses. They feature a plastic body with two prongs that fit into the sockets. At least the good news is, most fuses are cheap – it’s finding the one that needs to be replaced that could be troublesome.
Teen drivers need to be extra vigilant on the roads – especially in winter. This isn’t just about distracted driving… it’s also about staying on top of proper car maintenance at a time when roads are at its worst.
According to a Consumer Reports survey, 40 percent of drivers postpone car maintenance or repairs, and drivers 18 to 34 years old are the most likely to put off work on brake pads or tires – items that are necessary for safe everyday driving. By cutting corners on proper car maintenance, a teen driver’s risk of getting into a car accident in inclement weather increases, as does their long-term car care costs.
To help combat this issue, Honeywell Friction Materials presents “Bendix Brakes for Teen Safety.” This social media campaign educates parents and teens about how important it is to keep up your car’s maintenance. Here are a few handy and easy tips to keep in mind:
• Change your wiper blades when you change your oil and check your fluid reservoirs once a month during the winter.
• When you brakes start to squeal, it’s time to change the brake pads, and if you here grinding noises, that signals a more serious problem. Get a certified technician to check out both noises immediately to prevent costly repairs.
• Do a tire tread test with a quarter – if you can see the top of Washington’s head, it’s time for new tires.
• Your car contains a 50/50 mix of water and antifreeze, so make sure the level is full and the mixture is accurate.
Visit Bendix Brakes for Teen Safety on Facebook or YouTube for information on getting teen drivers ready for winter. We’ve included a Bendix video after the jump – it’s a humorous stand-up routine that pokes fun at teens and winter drivers.
When drivers find a car repair shop they like, they stick with it… and that’s because they trust the mechanics will do a good job. A recent study finds that about 50 percent of people completely trust their garage to fix their cars.
The survey, which was conducted by the Consumer Reports National Research Center, sheds some interesting light on car owners, who are now keeping their vehicles for an average of nine years. That means that if drivers want to keep their cars on the road longer, they need to find a trustworthy garage to carry out repairs. Of those questioned for this sutdy, 77 percent said they take their car to a garage to keep it maintained. Of those shops, 37 percent of respondent prefer small, independent shop, 30 percent go to dealerships and 11 percent take their car to get serviced at a brand-name repair chain.
Women, older drivers and more affluent households are much more trusting when it comes to a garage fixing their car, with 91 percent saying they trust their repair shop. When it came to authorizing whatever work the shop recommended to repair their vehicle, 73 percent of those polled had no worries giving mechanics the go ahead. And to finish off this feel-good survey, 83 percent of said they are confident they’ll get the right repair work done for the right price.
Do you have a preferred car repair shop you visit on a regular basis? Do you trust them with your car or do you go to them because you haven’t found any garage more trustworthy? Let us know in the comments section below.
[Source: Consumer Reports]
This probably doesn’t come to as a surprise to many – since we’re all guilty of it – but Consumer Reports has taken a poll that reveals 40-percent of American car owners will delay the maintenance of their vehicle due to finances.
More eye-opening is the fact that younger drivers, 18-34 years of age, tend to ignore tires and brake pads. In fact, 21-percent of them admitted to not even paying attention to those items. Of those polled, 22-percent admitted to delaying the manufacturer-recommended minor services, 17-percent postponed replacing wear items while 15-percent could live with dents and other body damage.
The vast majority involved in the poll agreed that a repair bill of $2,000 is considered a serious financial burden and that 25-percent of Americans couldn’t even afford the repair bill. Considering a car is probably the second largest investment an individual makes, it’s surprising to see how low-ranked it is in terms of priority when it comes to maintenance. 44-percent even admitted that delaying the service of their vehicle has degraded the value, safety and reliability of their car.
And the most absurd part of the entire poll? 83-percent said they were confident that their repair shop would do the work properly and for the right price. Oh boy.
What do teens know about car maintenance and safety? Bendix Brakes took to the streets to find out and as it turns out, teens don’t know much about these subjects.
Bendix Brakes decided to put together a few fun videos aimed at educating teen drivers about the cars they’re driving. This comes after the company commissioned a study that found than 30 percent of parents reported that their teen drivers had a roadside breakdown by the time they reached 19. The study goes on to say that one in four of these parents say their teens don’t care how their car works, as long as it works.
The result is an online campaign titles “Bendix Brakes for Teen Safety.” This video series is meant to educate both teens and parents about safe driving habits and keeping their vehicles properly maintained. You can find them on Bendix’s Facebook and YouTube pages, and although there are only two available right now, more are scheduled to follow. The first features real responses from teens on the street about car components, while the second video shows the top five car care tips for young drivers.
Watch the video that showcases real responses from teens after the jump.