If you have a convertible and like to use a top every once in a while, then it’s a good idea to also do some maintenance from time to time. A bit of elbow grease here and there can lead to a much longer lifespan for your convertible top. Here are some tips to help you get started:
Vinyl vs Fabric
The first step is to make sure you know exactly what kind of material your top is made out of. If you pick the wrong type of cleaning solution, then you could permanently ruin your top. That being said, most cleaners that are meant for convertible tops will work for both kinds of material. Just make sure to check the label for any warnings before proceeding.
Cleaning Away Dirt
The first thing you want to do is a cursory cleaning to remove the dirt. If you have one on hand, you can use a vacuum with a hose attachment to remove a good deal of the dirt. If you have a particularly powerful vacuum, then make sure that the settings are turned on fairly low so that you don’t damage the top.
If you are willing to get a bit messier, then a jet of clean water will help remove a lot of dirt from your top. If the dirt is not budging, then a dedicated convertible top cleaner is a good choice. Try not to use household cleaning products unless you are absolutely sure that they are safe, since their chemicals can really do a number on your top.
Grease and Tough Messes
If your problem is a bit bigger than grease, then you might want to go straight to a dedicated cleaner. One of the big problems with grease is that it can actually lead to the growth of mildew by providing a warm, wet environment. Getting that grease off of your top should be a top priority if you want to completely prevent the growth of mildew.
Warding Against the Future
There are many different sprays and protective layers that you can buy to protect your top. Coating your top with one of these methods every couple of weeks is a great way to minimize the amount of damage that you will have to deal with in the future. Applying a coat today can end up meaning a lot less time spent cleaning over the next few weeks, months, and even years. For further assistance, contact local professionals, such as those from Fred’s Auto Interiors.Read More
If rust covers the lid over your fuel tank, take steps to repair it now. A rusty gas tank lid effects the performance of your car’s engine, transmission and other critical parts if rust particles spread into the car’s fuel lines and tank. To prevent these issues, here are simple steps you can follow to repair your vehicle’s fuel tank lid now.
Get Your Supplies
You’ll need to purchase or gather a few supplies to repair your rusted fuel tank lid:
- 3 large cleaning cloths in chamois or cotton to avoid damaging the frame during the cleaning.
- 1 large piece of sandpaper, which you can cut into small pieces later.
- 1 large bottle of rust remover that comes with a small nozzle or cap you can use to squeeze or wet your cleaning cloths with easily.
Once you have all three supplies, park the car beneath an uncovered carport or shady tree to keep down the smell of gas fumes as you work on the gas tank’s lid. Heat from the sun or an enclosed garage can mix with the car’s gasoline fumes and make them smell worse.
You also need plenty of fresh air circulating around the car to keep down the effects of carbon monoxide, which is a strong and powerful invisible gas. Even if you don’t have the car’s engine on during the tank repairs, the fumes can still harm you if you inhale them.
Remove the Rust
Use scissors to cut your sandpaper into about four equal pieces, then follow the directions below:
- Use one piece of sandpaper to remove the rust from over the gas tank lid, then discard or exchange it for a new piece as needed. Don’t apply too much pressure on the gas tank lid with the sandpaper, or you can create holes in it. Instead, use small light circles to get rid of the top layer rust.
- Squirt a generous amount of rust remover on one of your cloths, then apply it directly to the rusted areas. If the rust remover irritates your hands, wear vinyl gloves to protect them.
- Use large circular motions with your cloth to wipe away the rust. The rust should begin to fade away during this step.
- Repeat steps 2-3 until the rust completely disappears. Replace the soiled cloths with clean cloths to avoid smearing rust over the tank’s lid as you clean it.
Allow the cleaned gas tank lid to dry for about 30 minutes to one hour. Apply a clear coat or sealer over the lid, then cover it with a color that closely matches your car’s paint.
If you need additional help with removing the rust from your fuel tank lid, contact an auto body repair shop, such as High Point Body & Paint, for services.Read More
If your car is totaled in an accident and you have an insurance plan that will pay you for the value of your car, you might be disappointed with the amount of money that you are able to get. This can be frustrating because you might need the money to purchase another car so that you can easily get to work and to other activities. Car insurance companies are going to have a different idea with regards to what a fair market-price of your car is. Here are some steps that you can take in order to make sure that you get the most money for your totaled car as possible.
1. Know the Value of the Car
Before you ask your insurance company for the money to cover your totaled vehicle, you want to make sure that you know what the vehicle is worth yourself. This will allow you to go into a negotiation feeling confident that you are asking for the correct price. You will want to use an online appraisal site that will allow you to determine the worth of your car, such as the Kelley Blue Book.
2. Prove Your Car Was in Excellent Condition
If your car was in excellent condition or any other level of condition that is on the higher end of the scale that your insurance company uses, you are going to want to make sure that you are able to prove it. First, gather all of your maintenance records from the past five to ten years of the vehicle. These will show that you put the money and work into your vehicle and that it was maintained to a standard that is better than average.
Next, gather your receipts for anything that you have recently bought for your car. If you have recently installed a new radio or new leather on the seats, get the receipts to show that you made these improvements.
Finally, have pictures on hand of your car that prove that its aesthetic condition was spectacular. If you won any awards for your car or received any other signs of public attention, these are very helpful.
3. Let the Insurance Company Know Where You Are Planning to Purchase Your Car
Insurance companies will sometimes work off of a general price range that used cars fall in specific areas. For exapmle, used cars are slightly cheaper in Cleveland than they are in Akron. If you live in between the two cities but are planning on purchasing your car in Akron because you found one that works perfectly for you, make sure that you tell this to the insurance company because they will sometimes be more willing to give you more money if you are shopping in an area that is slightly more expensive.
For more information, talk to an auto collision repair facility to make sure that your car is truly beyond repair.Read More
Rust will eat away at a car’s body and will continue to spread throughout the body of the car until it is dealt with. You need to act quickly to prevent rust from destroy the structural integrity of the auto body. Once rust has started to show you will need to remove it and paint the area. You can save a few dollars by doing the work yourself and by following this simple list of instructions that will teach you how to fix a rust spot on an auto body.
1 – The first step is to scrape off the rusted area using sandpaper and the electric grinder. Begin by taking the sandpaper and removing all the rough edges and chips of rust before you take the electric sander to the area. The electric sander should grind the area down to the metal of the car.
2 – Once the area has been sanded down to the metal, take the bucket of warm soapy water and a sponge and clear the dirt and debris on the area. This will clear the area of any contaminants that are stuck to the area before you apply the paint to it. This will allow the paint to adhere better to the area after it is applied.
3 – Take painters tape and tape off the area surrounding the rusted area to ensure that you are not painting over areas that do not need to be painted. This will also prevent drops of paint from spreading throughout the rest of the body of the car.
4 – With the area taped off, you can begin to apply a coat of primer paint to the area using a small rolling paint brush. Make sure when you apply the primer that the paint is applied consistent in all areas and that there are not one area with a higher concentration of paint than another.
5 – With the primer paint dried, you are not safe to apply the final coat of paint to the area. Take a coat of paint that matches the rest of the auto body and apply it to the area using a new roller brush. Make sure the paint is completely covers the area, then let it dry and apply another coat of paint on top of that.
6 – Let the area dry for a full day and then remove the painters tape from the area to complete the job.
If you do not have the time to fix a rust spot then you can take it into an auto body shop like Clint’s Body Shop & Rental Cars that specializes in rust removal and repair.Read More
If you have decided to give your vehicle a new paint job, and you wish to incorporate a bit of advertising right on the vehicle, hiring an auto paint specialist may be best if you wish to have a professional-looking job as a result. If you are handy with painting tools and have a bit of artistic flair, you may be able to undertake the project on your own. Here are some instructions to follow when deciding to paint lettering on your vehicle to be used for advertisement purposes.
Select The Best Lettering
When picking out lettering for advertising on a vehicle, using larger rather than smaller will work best in attracting attention. People only have a few seconds to read wording when they are moving in a vehicle, so it is best to keep words short and letters large enough to be seen. A good rule of thumb is to use lettering that is larger than three or four inches in height for the best visibility.
When selecting lettering color, you will want a contrasting color from the base color of your vehicle. If you have a dark vehicle, stick with white or light pastel colored letters. If your vehicle is light, black lettering will work best. Stay away from scrolled or flowery writing, as this is difficult to read, especially when the vehicle is in motion.
Prepare The Vehicle
After you had selected stencils to use for your lettering, you will need to place them on your vehicle in the pattern you select. Many people opt to place wording on the doors and hood of the vehicle, either in a straight line or by making slightly curved words to draw attention a bit more. Tape each letter stencil to the vehicle using painter’s tape. Make sure you have enough room between each letter and measure the space between each stencil to make sure the letters will at a uniform distance apart. Have a friend take a look at the placement of the stencils to help you decide if they look level and pleasing to read.
Paint The Lettering
Purchase enamel paint to make your lettering. Add a silicone compound to the enamel to add thickness to the consistency of the paint. This will allow the lettering to be placed without fear that the paint will smear or fade, as it will be thicker than traditional paint when it dries. Use a small paintbrush to dab the color into the open area of each stencil and allow to dry for several hours before putting on a second coat. Let the letters dry for a full day before removing the stencils from the vehicle. Add a coating of car wax to brighten the colors and enjoy your vehicle’s new display! For further assistance, contact a local auto body shop.Read More
Almost everyone who drives a car will experience some kind of automobile accident within their lifetimes. In fact, insurance companies estimate that you will experience some sort of accident about once every 18 years. Many of these might just be a little fender bender, a parking lot accident, or something very minor. However, even a minor car accident can cause a lot of damage to the body of a car that can cost thousands of dollars to repair. This is why it is so important to have a good auto body repair shop that can properly take care of any problems your car has. But how can you tell if the auto body repair shop is a good choice? Below are some ways to ensure you are getting the best quality service for your repairs.
Proper Training. The auto industry changes every year with new technology and designs. One of the most important qualities for an auto body service shop to have is that they have proper training and qualifications. There are many different kinds of training and certification programs that will allow mechanics and repairmen to have the proper training needed. ASE certification, PPG certification, and other training programs are a good indicator that the auto body repair shop is properly trained and qualified.
Warranty. Before you decide to go with an auto body shop, you will want to make sure that a warranty is included that will cover the work that they do. For example, if a bumper is replaced and the bumper falls of 3 months later, will they fix the problem for free or are you out of luck? At the minimum, a 1 year warranty should be offered. Many companies will even include lifetime warranties on the work. A good auto body repair shop will stand by their work by providing these warranties.
Word of Mouth. When it comes to choosing a good repair shop, sometimes the best way to find a good one is to ask around. A trusted friend or family member that goes to a good shop will be able to give you good recommendations. If you tell the auto body shop that you were referred to them by a loyal customer, they will also be more likely to treat you right.
These are just a few of the things that you need to consider when you are trying to find a good auto body repair shop. By finding a good shop for auto body collision repair services, you will get your car back on the road and looking as good as new.Read More
Taking your RV on a road trip is a fantastic idea, but you will definitely want to make sure that you take care of a few basic repairs and maintenance jobs so that you can get the most of the RV throughout the trip. Checking the tires, having the wheels aligned, and having the brakes tested are just a few tasks that need to be done before any road trip in your RV.
Checking the Tires
One of the most important things that you can do before leaving on your trip is to check to make sure that all of your tires are in good shape. The primary reason for this is to keep yourself safe, as a tire with a lot of wear can blow out if it is punctured while you are driving. When a tire blows out, it can easily cause your vehicle to go out of control, especially at high speeds.
This is particularly dangerous for an RV because the size of your vehicle can cause become a major danger to anyone else on the road if you happen to lose control. In addition, if you experience a blow out, your RV could end up flying off the road or rolling over.
Another reason to check your tires is because a worn tire will reduce your fuel efficiency. This can be a major problem for anyone driving an RV, as these vehicle do not have great gas mileage in the first place.
You will also want to make sure that you have your wheels aligned before you leave. The alignment of your wheels can be thrown off by a number of things, such as being involved in an accident, the regular passage of time, and even replacing your tires individually rather than all at once.
The main reason to ensure that you have your wheels aligned before you leave on your trip is that it will improve your handling. This is very important because it will increase the control you have over your large RV, while also making the ride more comfortable for anyone in the RV with you.
Finally, you are going to want to make sure that you have your brakes tested for wear before you leave. This is because an RV is going to require quite a bit more space than your average car before it can come to a complete stop, and worn or damaged brakes can greatly increase the amount of space that you need to stop.
Find a local RV repair service today, like at http://autobodyomaha.com, in order to have them look over your vehicle before your next trip. This type of service will be able to inspect and replace any worn tires and brakes and provide wheel alignment.Read More