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When a Split Second Counts

Picture yourself driving 500 miles at more than 200 miles an hour, under the most stressful conditions, never knowing what you might have to avoid in the next fraction of a second. That goes with the territory in the NASCAR racing circuit.

Compare this to your own driving. How much time would you need to deal with a road emergency? At 60 miles an hour, that’s 66 feet per second, you’ve already gone about 60 feet since you began reading this sentence.

High Water Headaches

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), floods are one of the most common and widespread of all disasters. Most communities in the United States have experienced some level of flooding from high water due to spring rains, heavy thunderstorms or winter snow thaws. While your vehicle may not have been flooded or completely covered in water, that doesn't necessarily mean that you should not be concerned about water damage. If you drove through high water, there's a chance that you may have damaged your vehicle.

Maintaining Your Present Vehicle May Make Financial Sense

Although you may want to get rid of your present vehicle in favor of a new car, taking better care of your current set of wheels may make much more sense in the long run-helping you achieve a goal of financial freedom.

"We advise our clients that if they want a 10 percent increase on their investments every year, they need to cut down on their expenses," said Terry Mulcahy, vice president of investments for R.W. Baird.

Keeping Your Leased Vehicle, or Buying an Off-Lease

Leasing has become a popular way of acquiring a vehicle. For those who face the decision regarding turning the vehicle in at the end of a lease versus taking ownership, the Car Care Council offers a suggestion: Invest in a comprehensive inspection by an independent expert before the lease has expired. This is especially important in the case of a high mileage vehicle.

Pride of Ownership Begins From Within

"Gee, it looks like new,“ said Fran, looking into Randy‘s car.“I’d never have guessed it was eight years old."

Bursting with pride, Randy confessed that if Fran had seen it a month earlier she would have turned her head the other way. The interior had become drab with time and wear. A gap in a seam, once barely visible, now spanned the seat. A minor rip from a screwdriver had become a big hole, oozing with foam padding. The carpeting was worn thin in spots and the headlining fabric was falling down.

Learn This for "Safety's Sake"

We've all heard the exclamation, "For Pete's sake!" But in the world of automotive emergencies, motorists need to learn certain procedures for "safety's sake." Two of the most valuable lessons, changing a tire and hooking up jumper cables are best learned before an emergency arises, according to the Car Care Council.

Proper Washing and Waxing Adds Value To Vehicles

More than one-third of car owners use damaging non-automotive products when washing their cars-products that could contain harmful detergents, abrasives and additives. And almost half of motorists don't ever wax their vehicles.

Rust: A Nasty Four-Letter Word

Henry Ford told buyers of his Model T they could select any color as long as it’s black. Today we see cars in any of 7,000 hues, including shades of rust that won’t appear on color chips in new car literature.

“Serious rust damage, including a hole right through the metal, can begin with a minor scratch in a parking lot from a shopping cart,” said Rich White of the Car Care Council. “Steel is strong and lasts a lifetime when it’s protected, but when that protection is invaded, the metal is exposed to the elements. That’s when rust begins its invasion.”

Save Money On Car Repair With These Four Questions

Automotive technicians are often compared to doctors. This comparison undoubtedly makes some techs smile and others grimace. But in the end, the two professions have a lot in common. It may surprise consumers to find that by choosing these professionals wisely, they can get better care at a better price.

When it comes to choosing a repair shop, many experts extol the virtues of the clean facility, a wall adorned with ASE certificates or a coffee pot and some tasty snacks. While these items are important, these four vital questions tell most of the story:

If It Looks Like A Flat, Feels Like A Flat, And Sounds Like A Flat, Guess What…!

A flat tire shouldn’t be reason for panic. “In schools where drivers’ education isn’t available,” observes one educator, “tire changing ought to be included in home economics.” The Car Care Council suggests that motorists who are unprepared to deal with a flat tire are faced not only with added expense and inconvenience; they also are more vulnerable to foul weather and roadside crime.

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