“When we set out to build the 2017 Prius Prime, we wanted to deliver a car that would live up to the idea of the word ‘Prime,’ – a plug-in hybrid vehicle with no compromises. With the new Prius Prime, Toyota has delivered the most efficient car in America and we are thrilled to receive the Electric/Hybrid Best Buy Award from Kelley Blue Book.” – Nathan Kokes, advanced technology vehicle manager, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.
According to a national survey conducted by the Rubber Manufacturers Association, only 17 percent of drivers are considered “tire smart” and know the correct way to check their tire pressure.
“Underinflated tires are under stress and will eventually wear unevenly, making them a safety hazard, not to mention an added expense since the worn out tires will have to be replaced sooner,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Properly inflated tires will not only help keep you safe on the road, but will improve gas mileage and performance.”
The Car Care Council recommends that vehicle owners check the pressure of all tires, including the spare, on a monthly basis and more often during colder weather. Tires should be inflated to recommended pressure levels, rotated every 6,000 miles to promote uniform tire wear and be replaced if worn or damaged.
The penny test is a popular and simple way to check tire tread. If you see Lincoln’s head above the tread, than it is time for new tires. In addition, the tread should be checked for uneven or irregular wear as well as cuts or bruises along sidewalls.
“Tires are such an important safety issue that you can’t take their condition lightly,” continued White. “Routinely checking tire balance and wheel alignment will reduce tire wear and improve handling.”
The Car Care Council is the source of information for the “Be Car Care Aware” consumer education campaign promoting the benefits of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair to consumers. For a free copy of the
council’s 80-page Car Care Guide or for more information, visit www.carcare.org.
If the engine is the heart of a car, the motor oil is the lifeblood.
So, in order to keep your vehicle
running smoothly, and avoid costly maintenance fees in the future, it’s important to make sure a vehicle’s oil is changed regularly.
What happens when you add the wrong gas into your tank?
We’re no strangers to living life on the go and mistakes will always be a part of that process. With the variety of gasoline available, it’s easy to fill your tank with the wrong gas one day. You know you’re not supposed to do it, but what happens if you do?
Gasoline in a Diesel Engine
Perhaps one of the worst fuel mix ups you can do, filling a diesel engine with gasoline is going to cost a lot to fix. According to Jim Gill from Volkswagon, you will basically have to flush the entire system and refill with diesel once every spot of gasoline is gone.
Why such a drastic measure? It’s very dangerous to the engine. Gill continues that a “catastrophic failure of the injection pump, the injectors, and finally the whole engine will likely occur.” Sounds serious, but what’s the technical reasoning behind that?
According to the European Automobile Manufacturers Association, the creation of gasoline makes a product with higher boiling points (gasoline boils around 105 and 410 degrees Fahrenheit, and diesel boils around 500 to 650). Along with boiling point, you need to consider how the fuel is used. Both gasoline and diesel mix fuel with air and uses compression to ignite the fuel. Diesel only rely on compression, unlike gasoline engines, they are not equipped with spark plugs. The discrepancy in compression can bend connecting rods, break pistons, or even destroy the engine.
Diesel in a Gasoline Engine
This is a much more forgivable offense to your vehicle, as the diesel in a gasoline car may only cause it to perform poorly. Expect a lot of smoke, and don’t do this often as you can still end up killing your car.
As previously mentioned, the compression ratios between diesel and gasoline engines are very different, and a gasoline engine may fail to ignite diesel fuel. If you realize your mistake in filling diesel, try to get your car drained and refilled with the proper fuel.
Avoid a Costly Mistake
We all make mistakes, but the next time you’re in a rush or maybe considering, “what’s the harm, fuel is fuel, right?” Remember your vehicle is made to run a certain way. Most fueling stations have color coded nozzles and the types of dispensers are kept separate, but not everyone adheres to making it easy. Stay safe and happy driving from Toyota of Whittier!
Purchasing a car is not a light decision, so it’s always great to go in at least a little knowledgeable. Here are some great resources to help you shop and verify your used car is in as good of shape as the salesman tells you.
The benefits of buying a used car over a new one are obvious, especially if there isn’t any underlying issue on the used vehicle. The big problem buyers face is finding an honest deal on a used car. Don’t get us wrong, we’re not here to bash on any other dealers, but a grain of caution is always a good thing to have. This article is for that little nervous voice in the back of your head telling you to get that second opinion.
Carproof.com is well renowned for its efficiency, and all you need is your VIN number. With that, they can trace a car’s history from how many accidents it may have had, and where it’s been manufactured. To date from the post of this article, fees are reasonable and well under a hundred for a full detailed history of the car.
Carfax.com is also very reliable, but different from Carproof. Their approach is to have you search for a car, year, and make and connect you to dealers near you with the perfect match. You can purchase single reports and easily add additional searches for a fraction of the cost.
Last but not least is Autocheck.com, yet another safe resource for used-car buyers. Unlimited reports are available for under fifty dollars and the site gives direct comparisons to Carfax to help you find the better deal.
We hope this helps ease a little anxiety when buying a used vehicle. These sites are great in giving that second opinion, but here at Toyota of Whittier we pride working one on one to find you a great deal. Our construction is finally winding down as well, so soon we’ll no longer be saying, “pardon our dust.” See you soon!
Types of Repairs
Thankfully, small chips and cracks can be repaired under $100. A tip from Safelite Auto Glass: a crack or chip can be safely repaired if it can be covered by a dollar bill. The only problem with that is if the chip is directly in the driver’s line of sight. If it is, it should be replaced instead of repaired for the driver’s safety.
How Does the Repair Process Work?
- A special resin is injected into the chipped area. If there are cracks, holes may be drilled at the ends of the crack to prevent it from spreading. There are three layers to a windshield: resin or polymer is sandwiched between two layers of glass, according to Popular Mechanics.
If you’re unsure about any aspect of the DIY repair process, consider hiring a professional.
To answer the question posed at the beginning, repair your windshield immediately. Even a small chip can quickly spread with a rough bump in the road or an aggressive turn. If you’re traveling away from home, a repair company can easily come to you.
Aside from the obvious issue of broken glass potentially hurting you, a windshield also needs to be repaired quickly because it is a structural part of the vehicle that contributes to the overall strength, according to the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA). When you replace a windshield, the new seal might not be as strong as the factory seal. This can lead to possible leaks that may be a challenge to find and fix.
If you’re handy with automobiles, you could take a crack fixing your windshield yourself. There are plenty of do-it-yourself kits that mimic what the pros are using. Just remember the tip from earlier, if the damage is smaller than a dollar bill, it can be repaired. The only issue with DIY is that the quality of materials may not be as good as the professionals’. If you do try this, only fix cracks that aren’t in the driver’s immediate line of sight.
If your windshield is cracked, try to get it repaired but don’t shy away from replacement if it’s better for your safety. And for best results, contact a professional. Drive safe!
Here are seven widespread myths on auto upkeep you shouldn’t blindly follow:
Myth: Engine oil should be changed every 3,000 miles. Wrong. Follow the advice in the owner’s manual and ignore the self-serving pleas from oil companies and quick-lube shops. Under normal driving conditions, most vehicles can travel 7,500 miles or more between oil changes. Changing oil more often certainly won’t harm an engine, just waste money. But if you do a lot of stop-and-go driving, trailer-towing, or traveling through mountainous or dusty areas, 3,000 miles between oil changes is a good idea.
Myth: Flush the coolant with every oil change. Most owner manuals recommend changing the coolant every five years or 60,000 miles. But check for a leak if the coolant reservoir is low despite repeatedly topping it off.
Myth: Inflate tires to the pressure shown on the tire’s sidewall. The psi figure on the side of the tire is the maximum pressure the tire will hold safely. If you’re looking for the automaker’s recommended pressure that balances braking, handling, gas mileage, and ride comfort, it’s usually on a sticker on the driver-side doorjamb, in the glove box, or on the fuel-filler door.
Myth: If regular-grade fuel is good, premium must be better. Another expensive mistake. Most vehicles run fine on regular-grade fuel (87 octane). Filling these cars with premium won’t cause damage, but it won’t improve performance, either. Higher-octane fuels are less likely to create pre-ignition problems, so they’re usually used in hotter-running, high-compression engines.
Myth: Warm up your car for several minutes before driving. Outdated advice. Driving the car is the fastest way to warm up a modern engine, and the sooner it warms up, the sooner it delivers the best mileage and performance. And don’t rev the engine during the first few miles.
Myth: Wash your car with dishwashing or laundry detergent. No, not really. Detergents strip off a car’s wax finish. Pay a little extra and stick with the car-wash liquid, which cleans without removing wax.
Myth: A battery will recharge after a jump start in only a few minutes of driving. Not even close. It can take hours of driving to give the battery a full charge, especially in the winter. Heated seats, music systems, and other accessories draw so much power that the alternator has little left to recharge the battery. You can check to see if the battery will still hold a charge by having a load test at a gas station. If it can, several hours may be needed on a battery charger to give the battery a full charge.