When spring comes, that means it’s time to put away your snowblower so it can take a well-deserved rest through the warm-weather months. To keep it running for as long as possible, make sure that you prepare your snowblower before you put it away for the off-season. [More]
The best way to keep your car rolling for as long as possible is to keep it well maintained. While changes in how automobiles are made and repaired mean that it’s hard to do as much maintenance in your front yard than a few decades ago, there are some tasks that can save you money and time later on and that you can perform at home yourself without extensive auto repair training. [More]
Six months after the Federal Aviation Administration levied a fine against Southwest Airlines for safety violations related to airplane repairs, the agency announced it was investigating similar issues with American Airlines Group after mechanics filed a series of whistleblower complaints and a lawsuit alleging managers for the airline breached FAA rules in order to aid its merger and get planes on the tarmac. [More]
According to the consumer advice editor at Edmunds, if you bought a car in the last seven or eight years, you don’t have to change its oil every 3,000 miles. On these newer models, it’s fine to wait until 7,500 miles or more, although a Pennzoil employee tells the New York Times that you should stick with what your manual advises (which is still probably less frequent than every 3,000 miles). You can also check out this California State list of guidelines for different cars.
Maybe I can’t play Plants vs. Zombies while I drive (or maybe I can!*), but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of useful apps for the average driver. In its August issue, Consumer Reports reviews a bunch of apps for motorists, both free and paid, that promise to help you remember maintenance dates, get the correct info after an accident, or find your car in a big parking lot.
Are you planning on buying tires soon? According to this report from TireBusiness.com, Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. is planning on raising its prices for passenger and light truck tires by “up to 12 percent,” in response to an increase on tarrifs from China. They wouldn’t provide a hard date for the price increase, but said “soon.”
We were poking around the NYT archives when we stumbled across this gem, car maintenance budgeting advice for people interested in owning a car … in 1907. Some of the advice remains the same. Other parts, like how much to pay your driver and how much to budget for repainting the car once a year — not so much.
It doesn’t take 30,000 without an oil change to wreck an engine, here’s pictures of reader Eugene’s sister’s blown engine and turbo after just 10,000 miles without so much a dipstick getting exposed to the outside air. See how it’s covered in what looks like piles of dried BBQ sauce? That’s not a good look for an engine. Oily is good, black-oily is bad. “One big week long project, ” writes Eugene. More grisly photos, inside… UPDATE: Commenters suggest the bigger culprit may have been using non-synthetic oil in a turbo car. Looks like a VW 1.8 turbo- notorious engine for sludge buildup. A turbo engine, that one in particular, requires frequent oil changes and synthetic oil,” says anAdmetus.
This sludge-filled massacre is what happens to your engine if you don’t change the oil for 30,000 miles. The six photos depict abject carnage, a crime scene for cars. Good job, Enterprise-Rent-A-Car. Don’t let this happen to you. Checking and changing your oil is a good weekend project, here’s how to do it. [via Jalopnik]
In 2006, Jennifer—the co-founder of popular parenting/consumer advocacy site Z Recommends—took her two-and-a-half-year-old to the bathroom at the local Toys R Us store. What she didn’t know was that this particular store featured the awesome striking power of the Action Toilet Stall with Collapsible Mom Trap! As she closed the door, the entire partition fell over on top of her and her daughter. Jennifer managed to protect her daughter from harm, but in the two years since the event, she’s developed chronic pain from the accident—and the response from Toys R Us has been “don’t call us, we’ll call you.”
Save Hundreds On Auto Maintenance By Shopping Around When budgets get tight, many people are tempted to cut back on their regular car maintenance. Don’t do it! [CR]
Josh has been paying $30 extra to change out the air filter each time he brings his car to Jiffy Lube for an oil change. This time, to save money, he decided to do it himself—and that’s when he discovered that Jiffy Lube lied to him about the filter.
Consumer Reports has some tips for keeping your refrigerator happy and your utility bills low. Keeping the door shut as much as possible is apparently very important. As mom always said, “We’re not trying to refrigerate the entire State of Illinois, are we?”
Reader Brenden says: