Archive for January, 2014

4 Inexpensive Ways to Prepare Your Car for Winter

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Driving a car in the winter is a challenge. Not only do you have to scrape ice from your windshield, allot extra time to let the car warm up and keep the washer fluid topped off, the act of driving itself is slower and more dangerous. While there’s nothing you can do about the weather, the salt on the roads or the inexperience of other drivers, there are a few cheap and easy things you can do to get your car ready for the winter. Here’s the top 4 DIY ways to winterize your ride:

1. Keep your headlights clear with car wax

tip for headlights

All you have to do is wipe a small amount of ordinary car wax on your headlights and your bulbs should be able to shine through just about any severe storm. This treatment will last for about six weeks, using the same water repellent properties that protect your paint to keep road spray and ice from forming over your lights.

2. Squeak-proof your wipers with rubbing alcohol

windshield wipers tip

For many, the first sign of winter is the scratchy, squeaking slide of their windshield wipers over an icy windshield. If you rub your wipers with a cloth saturated with rubbing alcohol, you can fix badly streaking and squeaking wipers.

3. Ice-proof your windows with vinegar

tip for car windows

You can keep the glass on your car ice-free by treating them with vinegar. Simply fill a spray bottle with three parts vinegar to one part water and give your windows a spritz every night. Vinegar contains acetic acid, which raises the melting point of water.

4. Prevent doors from freezing shut with cooking spray

cooking spray car doors

In extreme temperatures, your car may literally freeze itself shut. This happens because water freezes inside the porous rubber seals that keep your doors shut. To prevent this, simply spray some cooking oil on the rubber and rub it in with a paper towel.

There are other steps you can take to truly winterize your vehicle. In salty areas, a fresh coat of wax can prevent paint damage. Even in areas where there is little snow but low temperatures, a set of good winter tires can improve your car’s safety and performance during the winter months. But these four tricks are easy, cheap and guaranteed to save you time on a frosty Monday morning.

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The 5 Best New Sports Cars for 2014

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A new model year means exciting new sports cars. Whether you’re in the market for a 400 horsepower two-seater or you just like to drool over them, we’ve put together a list of the 5 best sports cars for 2014.

5. Jaguar F-Type

Jaguar F-TYPE

Photo by Jaguar MENA

A little smaller (and less expensive) than Jaguar’s XK line, the F-Type boasts a supercharged V6 with up to 380 horsepower. If that’s not enough, this two-seater convertible can be purchased with a beastly 5.0 liter, 495-horsepower supercharged V8. Estimates put the 0-60 time at just over four seconds. Powerful, fun to drive and with a seven speed automatic built that includes manual gear-select and steering wheel paddle shifters, the F-type is a natural evolution in the British sports car tradition.

4. BMW 4 Series

BMW 4 Series Front On

Photo by Carleasingmadesimpletm

The 3 series is undergoing a major redesign for 2014. The newly minted 4 series includes new exterior designs and a choice between several engines, from a 240 horsepower four cylinder to a 300 horsepower turbo six. Fantastic weight distribution and BMW’s optional xDrive all-wheel-drive system insure that the 4 series will be a dream to drive.

3. Alfa Romeo 4C

Alfa Romeo 4C

Photo by Diego Fornero

Many Americans are unfamiliar with the Alfa Romeo company. But this might be the year to find out what this longstanding Italian company has to offer. The new 4C, with a concept car line and a carbon fiber body, boasts a 300 horsepower engine and a luxury interior. It’s all-new aluminum engine is as powerful as it is light and responsive. The 4C, along with several more conventional models, marks Alfa Romeo’s entry into the American car market.

2. Audi R8

Audi R8

Photo by FotoSleuth

As part of Audi’s four new releases in 2014 (including a coupe and a sport-back), the new R8 includes not only a total exterior redesign but an insanely powerful new engine: the Audi R8 V10 engine with as much as 525 horsepower. Combined with the quality and commitment to driving experience that Audi has come to be known for insures that the R8 will be the sports car other sports car drivers have on their wishlist.

1. Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

Photo by AlBargan

Some people are calling the new Corvette Stingray the greatest sports car America has ever produced. All superlatives aside, the Stingray is beyond impressive. With a super-advanced engine boasting a 6.2 liter V8 with 450 horsepower, not to mention a remarkable redesign of the exterior, the new Corvette is faster, sleeker and more technologically advanced than ever. A Drive Mode Selector allows the driver to adjust 12 separate performance attributes (like an equalizer for you car) in response to different driving situations such as wet roads or using only four cylinders to save on gas during commutes. If you’ve always wanted a Corvette, this year’s Stingray is the one to drive.

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What is the Tire Size for My Car?

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Buying tires in Los Angeles does not need to be a confusing task. Knowing your wheel size can save you a lot of time when you are looking to purchase a new set of tires. First, find out your vehicle’s original tire size, which can be found in the owner’s manual or on the tire label. The tire label can be located on the driver’s door jamb, glove box, or inside the fuel hatch. If you can’t locate it, examine the tire’s sidewall.

car-tires

What am I looking for?

The tire width is a three-digit number, given in millimeters. The aspect ratio is the ratio of tire height to tire width. The letter “R” refers to the radial construction of the tire’s carcass plies, which runs from lip to lip and provides strength, flexibility, stability and comfort to the tires. Also locate the wheel’s diameter and the load index, which is how much weight the tire is certified to carry when fully inflated. Never buy a tire that has a lower load index than the vehicle’s original tire.

A tire’s speed rating tells you the tire’s top speed at which it can operate. Speed ratings range from Q (the lowest speed) to Z (the highest speed), with an additional H rating that is between U and V. Replacement tires should have speed ratings equal or higher than the original tires.

fast car in motion

Different Types of Tires

In addition to knowing what size tire you need, you should also be aware of the different types of tires. Here are a few of the most popular varieties of wheels:

-Touring tires are ideal if you desire a smooth and quiet ride that allows for performance handling.

-High-performance tires are ideal for sports cars, which allow for excellent handling and performance at higher speeds. A softer rubber compound provides increased grip, especially when cornering at high speeds.

-Light truck tires are great for pick-up trucks because they provide durability and traction in off-road situations. SUV tires are designed for on-road and comfortable SUV driving situations.

-Commercial light truck tires are designed for commercial trucks and allow for everyday wear and tear.

 

For additional assistance with wheel size or to pick up a set of new tires, come on down to Discount Tire Centers today.