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Windshield Replacement Is Critical For Safety

Auto Glass Replacement

windshield replacement

Proper windshield replacement is one of the most important repairs that can be done. The front window provides both comfort and safety. Its job is to keep you in and other things out. If you are in an accident, your front window can prevent you from being ejected from the car. Improper repair can nullify all the safety that it should provide. There are self-repair kits, but the recommended method is to have an auto glass shop do the fix to make sure it is done right.

The glass is specially made for safety. It is composed of two panes of glass with a thin vinyl sheet in-between. When it is cracked, the vinyl sheet prevents the glass from exploding or creating shards that would severely injure the vehicle’s inhabitants. It also makes it flexible in the case of being hit by an object. This absorbs any shock caused by the object, preventing further damage to the vehicle.

It is extremely important to have the window replaced properly. Any cracks, chips, or fissures can create blind spots for the driver. A professional repair shop will make sure the new window fits properly, is glued in place, and that the seals fit perfectly. Crashes, air bag deployment, and other actions can cause stress on the glass. A properly installed window can usually absorb most of these actions without popping out of place. Since a large number of auto deaths are caused by ejection, it is important that the window remain in place in the most stressful environments.

Many services can come to your home or office. You will recognize them as the trucks driving around town with several windowpanes in the back. These services often accept insurance from many companies, which reduces your cost. Using a mobile service allows you to get the repair done before you have to do any more hazardous driving.

The original manufacturer makes OEM windows. These windows are the exact same models used when the car is originally built. Using this type of window may be a bit more expensive, but you can be sure the fit is perfect. The importance of the front window is high enough to advocate the additional cost.

There are many after-market windshields available. Many of them are made to the factory specifications, but cost significantly less. If you use this type, be sure the fit is perfect before declaring satisfaction. There should not be any glue visible. The seals should be straight and fit just as they did with the original window. Any issues should be resolved before accepting the job.

The cost varies according to the service and type of window used. Some newer cars have to be serviced at the original dealer’s shop. This can be very expensive. As a model ages in the marketplace, the option of using an auto glass shop is the better choice. They are quite a bit cheaper than dealers are because they buy larger quantities of the glass. Many dealers actually subcontract window repairs to auto glass shops so they can make a higher profit on the repair.

The cost of any windshield replacement should not be a deterrent to having the job done correctly. If your insurance does not cover the repairs, it may be worth it to add this option. Most work is very reasonable in cost and done in a very professional manner.  Click here for more information about auto glass replacement, they have some great information about different type of auto glass.

How To Prevent Costly Auto Repairs

Preventing Costly Car Repairs

Taking simple steps to maintain your car can save you a lot of money in the future. Unfortunately, many car owners never want to talk about basic car maintenance. They simply wait until something is broken then rush to the nearest auto shop and have it fixed. It’s high time you paid attention to your car. Some of the car maintenance activities you can actually do yourself to save on costs. You’ll avoid a lot of major car problems if you take note of the general guidelines below.

Oil changes every 3,000-4,000 miles

Changing your oil is quite simple; it can easily be converted into a DIY project. However, if you don’t want to get dirty, spare as little as $20 to have an oil change at your nearest auto shop. Every car, regardless of age and model, needs to have an oil change after every 3000 miles. But you may want to check your manufacturer’s specifications on the same just to be sure.

Check tire pressure monthly

One practical piece of car maintenance is checking the tire pressure. You need to do this at least once a month or whenever you feel there’s a need. Every car has a stipulated car pressure for its tires as given by the manufacturer. You can get this details on the vehicle’s door panel. One sign that the tire pressure is not at par is tires that wear out unevenly. Remember that replacing a tire is more expensive than simply making sure the tire pressure is right.

General vehicle tune ups

A vehicle tune up encompasses every simple maintenance step to ensure that the car is in proper working condition. When you take the car for a tune up, the mechanic will check the spark plugs, air filters, cables, fuel and oil among other aspects for any signs of trouble. Car owners who understand the value of regular tune ups are less likely to spend a lot of money on costly repairs in future. In fact, tune ups can prevent you from experiencing a car breakdown when you least expect. Don’t just wait until your next long trip to take the car for a tune up; a general tune up is important at least every 3,000 miles.

What can be done without professional help?

If you are serious about safeguarding this important investment, consider doing some simple upkeep activities without any expert help. For instance, you can learn to replace the air filters, check the tire pressure or change the oil and transmission fluid at home. You can take on any of these activities and more by learning how to do them. When you perform these basic car maintenance, you could save a few hundred dollars every year.

Remember that some things need the touch of a certified mechanic in order to be resolved once and for all. For instance, do not attempt to replace a radiator, a water pump or alternator at home. Visit your auto shop and discuss ways to help in car maintenance without professional help.

How To Select The Correct Auto Repair Shop

Choosing The Best Auto Repair In Your Area

automotive repair services

Whether you’ve moved to a different state, changed cars or are just looking for a new auto dealership, you have lots of options to choose from. Finding a reliable car care center that will cater to all your auto repair and regular car maintenance needs is vital. Before your car breaks down, go through the following steps to select a suitable auto repair shop in your area.

Get referrals

The people around you; your friends, colleagues, neighbors and relatives may have an car care center that they highly recommend. Start by asking them to give you some referrals and an honest opinion of each car repair shop they’ve been to. You’ll save a lot of time and money by avoiding cunning mechanics in the area.

Find a car care center for your brand of car

You may want to find an auto repair shop that specializes in the make and model of your car. Working with a mechanic who specializes in the make of your car ensures you have the right skills and equipment to fix the car.

Is the auto repair shop convenient?

Find an car care center that is convenient for you to access without spending hours on the road. It will be easier for you to fit regular car maintenance in your schedule if the car repair shop is easy to access. You should be able to drop off your car when it’s most convenient.

Check online reviews

Go ahead and perform a background search of a car care center that has been recommended by someone you know. Take a look at online reviews to know what other unbiased consumers have to say about the auto shop.

Ask the mechanic the right questions

When you find a couple of auto repair shop that you are interested in, go ahead and get in touch with them with a list of critical questions. Ask about their credentials, level of experience and warranties available. Do they offer any guarantees for their repair work? Find out if the mechanics are licensed and insured to offer different kinds of auto repairs and replacements. Do not forget to ask them about the years of experience their employees have.

Request for an estimate from the mechanic

Most auto shops will offer free estimates for the kind of repairs you want done. A written estimate allows you to keep track of all the repair work that will be done on your car. It protects you from conniving mechanics who want to do unnecessary repairs in order to charge you more. With a written estimate, you can tell if the auto dealership has misdiagnosed the problem with your car. You are also able to budget ahead of time.

Visit the auto repair shop

Any reputable car care center will be free to provide you with all the details concerning repairs done on your car. The mechanic should explain to you in a language that you can understand. Take the initiative to understand the problem before you approve any repairs to be done.

Auto Preventive Maintenace

Regular preventive maintenance is probably the single thing you can do as a car owner to keep your ride happy and save money on repairs in the future. However, not everyone agrees on what preventive maintenance is, what you should do, and when you should do it. Let’s clear that up, and give you some tips that will apply to any vehicle.

Anyone who’s ever worked on cars or spent a ton of money getting their car repaired will tell you: Don’t ignore preventive maintenance. The basics, like changing your oil, checking your tire pressure, and getting scheduled inspections and work done are like getting regular checkups at the doctor. They keep you healthy and give you—and the experts—a chance to catch anything serious before it becomes a major problem. With your car, that can save you thousands.

First, Read Your Owner’s Manual

Pay attention to your owner’s manual. Regardless of the vehicle you drive, your regular maintenance schedule is inside it, and you’ll never fall for old car myths like, “You should change your oil every 3,000 miles,” (unless of course, your manual says you should, and odds are it doesn’t). You will, however, discover how often your manufacturer really does suggest you change your oil (it can vary widely by vehicle), your filters, any drive or timing belts in your vehicle, and more. You’ll even find out whether you’re putting the right gas in your vehicle or whether you’re using the right kind of oil in the first place.

Seriously—you wouldn’t fire up a complicated piece of technology or a massive new home appliance without checking the manual to make sure you know what you’re doing. Most car lovers already know how important this is, but it’s still important even for people don’t consider themselves interested in how their car works. If you’re using the wrong oil, for example, or filling a car that calls for higher octane fuel with the lowest octane stuff you can buy, you may run the risk of voiding your warranty, and worse, causing damage that’ll cost more to fix than you’d save by using the cheap stuff.

Preventive Maintenance Every Vehicle Needs

When we covered the ways you can save serious money on car repair, more than a few people pointed out that preventive maintenance is probably one of the biggest ways you can save money—not actively, but in the long term. Spending a little money now on these basics will save you from more costly repairs later on:

Five Ways to Save Serious Money on Car Repairs

If you drive, there’s probably little you hate more than getting your car repaired.

  • Do your own inspection. It’s basic, but give your car a once-over periodically so you catch anything that looks out of the ordinary. Make sure all your lights are working. Check the air pressure in your tires every month or so (and buy a cheap tire air pressure gauge and keep it in the glove compartment). Doing so is good for your tires, gets you better mileage, and saves you money in gas if you discover that the pressure is off. Listen for any strange sounds, inside and out. Make sure your tires have enough tread. You can use a penny to do it, or look out for the wear indicators on the tire treads. If anything’s out of the ordinary, don’t ignore it.
  • Learn to check your fluids. Even if you don’t ever learn how to change your antifreeze, power steering, coolant, or even your wiper fluid (although seriously, don’t let someone charge you to change wiper fluid), you should learn how to check those fluid levels. In some cases, you can see the tank level directly, but most have gauges or dipsticks you can pull out to check current levels against a notch that indicates optimal levels. Even if your owner’s manual doesn’t have much to say about checking your transmission fluid or antifreeze, don’t be afraid to open the hood and see if you can find it. If you’re running low, add more (if you can) or get it changed. Most importantly, never ignore a leak.
  • Inspect and get your timing and serpentine belts replaced when necessary. Many people will tell you to get your timing belt replaced every 60,000 miles or so, and your serpentine belt replaced every 40,000 miles, give or take. Again, your owner’s manual will offer real numbers for your type of vehicle. If you can’t find the manual, look around online. You’ll probably find the actual recommendation for your car. Use it as a guideline, and ask your mechanic to inspect the belts when it gets time to replace them mileage-wise. If they’re still in good shape, don’t bother, but if they’re worn out, get them replaced before they fail. If you wait and those belts do fail, you’ll break down, and the damaged belt can damage other accessories, making the repair even more expensive.
  • Check your oil and get it changed regularly. Whether your car has a dipstick to check the oil’s color and oil level or the dipstick has been replaced with an electronic gauge, you should know how to check it. Knowing the difference between clean oil and muddy, murky oil will save you a ton on unnecessary changes and gives you a way to tell if something’s wrong with your engine (e.g. the oil looks terrible but you just had it changed). It’s hard to make a universal recommendation for how frequently you should change your oil, but the answer is—as we mentioned—in your owner’s manual. Don’t just blindly follow the 3,000 mile myth though—for most vehicles it can be as high as 10,000 miles, depending on the oil your vehicle calls for (something else that’s in the manual).
  • Check your battery and clean the contacts (if necessary). Most batteries these days don’t require much in the way of maintenance, but you should know where it is and check it to make sure it’s not leaking and there’s no mineral or other buildup on the contacts. If there is, clean it off with a battery cleaning brush. It will set you back a couple of bucks at any auto parts or department store. Buy one and keep it in the trunk. While you’re at it, consider buying a cheap battery tester or jump starter. You’ll never need to call someone or wait for AAA (or a friendly passer-by) to give you a jump.
  • Replace your windshield wipers when the view gets streak-y. It may seem silly, but I’ve known several people who just ignored their wipers until they got them replaced as part of a bigger job. Wipers are cheap and easy to replace yourself. Don’t wait until you can barely see through your windshield. Your visibility is important, and you wouldn’t wait until you saw an optometrist to clean your glasses, would you? While you’re at it, give your windshield a good cleaning inside and out—if it’s hard to see, the problem may be inside, not out.
  • Replace your cabin air filter. Replacing a cabin air filter is probably one of the easiest things you can do to keep your car comfortable. Most vehicles make the cabin air filter easily accessible, and replacing it is as easy as opening a box. You can get a fitting filter at any auto parts store. It may not be critical to your car’s operation, but it’s easy, it makes the ride more pleasant, and it’s a repair you’ll never have to pay someone else to do.
  • Replace your engine air filter. Getting to the engine air filter may be a little trickier depending on the vehicle you have, but replacing it regularly is important. Your owner’s manual will give you a mileage estimate for how frequently you should replace your engine air filter, but if you can get to it, check it. If it’s dirty, replace it. If you drive a ton, especially in stop-and-go traffic or have a long commute, your engine air filter may get dirtier faster than someone who drives open roads or only drives around on the weekends. If you need help or your owner’s manual doesn’t lay out exactly how to do it (although it should).
  • Get your tires rotated and balanced, and your alignment checked. Your manual will tell you how often to do this, and it’s important to do to make sure your tires wear evenly and your car drives smoothly. You can make your tires—which are expensive to replace all at once, by the way, take it from someone who’s done it several times—last much longer by getting them rotated and balanced. Your alignment is just as important. If you’re fighting your car to keep it straight, that’s a bad situation that’s easily corrected.
  • Change your spark plugs. If your spark plugs are worn out or covered in buildup, your engine isn’t working efficiently. That can cost you money in fuel for one, but it can also lead to a breakdown. It may sound daunting, but in some cases checking and replacing them isn’t that difficult. If you don’t feel like doing it yourself (or it’s a big and complicated job for your vehicle), follow your manual’s recommendation and get them changed regularly—for most standard copper spark plugs and vehicles, that’s around 30,000 miles (but again, it varies – some iridium plugs can last up to 100,000 miles).

These are just a few things that every vehicle needs, and almost all of them are things you can do yourself. We can’t stress enough the importance of checking your owner’s manual for anything we may have overlooked here, or anything specific to your vehicle. If you don’t have your manual, you can find it pretty easily online.