While the saying says that April showers bring May flowers, last year May was the second wettest month in the recorded history of the United States. Most drivers know that intense rain can cause a plethora of different driving hazards that contribute to road conditions becoming unsafe. For example, water mixing with dirt on asphalt causes tires to lose traction on the road, making hydroplaning a legitimate concern when it rains. CARS Protection Plus acknowledges all the dangers that rainy conditions can promote and includes a short list of tips to help drivers stay safe and avoid accidents when driving in the rain.
While it may be one of the simplest rules for driving in rainy conditions, CARS Protection Plus realizes that many of us are so used to the routine of driving that we do not properly adjust for unfavorable conditions. Drive smart and make sure to be alert and focused on your surroundings.
Turn on Headlights
It is the law in most states for drivers to turn on their headlights when conditions contribute to low visibility arise such fog, snow, cloudiness, or rain. Proper use of headlights allows drivers to see the roads better in rainy conditions and help other drivers see you on the road as well.
Because of the risk of hydroplaning when driving during wet weather, slowing down is an excellent way to avoid accidents. Remember that speed limits are designed for ideal driving conditions where the driver has good visibility and there is little traffic. Rain generally will increase traffic and reduce visibility, so slowing down you drive to your destination is crucial. CARS Protection Plus also recommends allowing for more travel time when travelling in rainy conditions, as it helps not to feel rushed while things on the road are moving slower.
Increase Following Distance
CARS Protection Plus acknowledges that slick road conditions and reduced visibility can easily cause accidents on the road and increasing your following distance in addition to slowing down is a great way to take precautions. This gives drivers plenty to time to react to road hazards and account for longer brake times by braking early.
Avoid Large Puddles When Possible
Deep puddles present several issues for your car while driving in rainy conditions. Water that splashes into your car’s engine compartment can damage electrical systems within, while potholes that may be located under puddles can cause issues for your cars suspension. As a rule of thumb, if you cannot gauge the depth of a puddle, it is best to avoid it if possible.
Distracted driving may be one of the most pressing issues of our time. Eating, fumbling with the radio and even gawking at things other than the road in front of us have always been issues for drivers. However, the most pressing threat to attentive driving is the cell phone. Cell phones have been in mainstream use for at least the past 10 years, but with each new innovation and tech offering we become more comfortable using them in the car instead of giving full attention to the road.
Texting is the most common form of distracted driving. Sending a few words or looking at a text may seem innocent, but many don’t realize what could happen until it is too late. Roads and highways are often filled with other drivers, wildlife and road hazards. Full attention should be given to the task of driving, because you never know what may be in your path.
You may not believe it until you see it yourself, but some drivers watch videos while they drive. This habit is as stupid as it is bold and if caught the driver may be placed under arrest for reckless endangerment.
Distracted driving can be as deadly as drunk driving, but many don’t give a second though to eating and drinking behind the wheel. Instead why not have a small snack before getting into your car and saving meals for times that you can sit and enjoy them. Often times these bad habits are combined with cell phone use making it all the more dangerous.
Luckily there are many hands free devices that will allow you to place a call or a text without taking your eyes off the road. Staying connected while behind the wheel is possible with a small investment in a Bluetooth device or properly equipped vehicle. There are many distractions in life, but protecting yourself and the others around you is paramount. Trust CARS Protection Plus to protect your vehicle and give you the peace of mind you need to focus on the important things in life.
Becoming familiar with the tactics of the few bad actors in the used car marketplace can make you more comfortable as you shop and negotiate a great deal on a new used vehicle. Most used car dealerships aren’t looking to rip you off. Most strive to match customers with a great vehicle to meet their needs and budget. After all, happy customers mean repeat business.
When shopping for a used vehicle, get to know your local inventory; compare available models at different lots in your area to determine a fair price. Knowing you have other options will give you the upper hand while negotiating a deal. Be ready to walk away from unreasonable situations. If the vehicle you came to see is nowhere to be found or the terms of the deal don’t suit your budget, make it known that you have other options.
If you plan to trade in a vehicle, know its value before you show up on the lot. Clean vehicles that do not need repairs will fetch a higher amount of credit towards your trade. Come prepared with your maintenance records and be ready to tell the dealer if you feel you could get more money for your trade at another lot. Making it known from the start that you have been looking around may get you a better deal without much effort.
Some dealerships offer a free Car Fax report. Take advantage of this whenever possible or consider purchasing one for yourself, even if it isn’t free. This report can help you check the mileage history of the vehicle to avoid Odometer Scams and ensure that regular maintenance has been performed.
Read everything before you sign on the line. Whether due to an honest mistake or unsavory practice make sure you understand the bill of sale and or finance agreement before you sign. Ask for a breakdown of the total amount you are being charged. There are add-ons such as vehicle service contracts and GAP coverage that can increase the total amount financed. These are good products to have as long as you make sure the pricing is fair.
There are few sales transactions as stressful as buying a used car or truck. Protect yourself from unexpected costly auto repair with Cars Protection Plus. We’ll provide the transparency you need to get a great deal on a vehicle service contract. We hope that these tips will help you avoid common automotive marketplace scams and pitfalls.
Purchasing a used car is likely one of the most exciting and expensive purchases you’ll ever make. How often do you get to spend thousands of dollars on a single item? Taking the time to carefully and measuredly decide which car or truck is right for you can make the difference between the best or worst decision of a lifetime. We have consulted our experts and came up with the following guide to finding the used car that’s perfect for you.
According to Edmunds.com certified pre-owned car sales are at an all-time high. The most important thing to consider before stepping foot on the used car lot is your budget. In this market knowing your limitations before you shop is everything. By carefully looking at your finances you can pinpoint the monthly payment that is right for you. Experts at interest.com recommend using the 20/4/10 rule which says you should:
Make a down payment of at least 20%.
Finance a car for no more than four years.
And not let your total monthly vehicle expense exceed 10% of your gross income.
Once you have pinpointed your budget, determine the size of vehicle needed and which features are important to you. Make a list of vehicles fitting that description before setting out to do some research. In the digital age that we live in, it is easy to research vehicles if you know where to look. For safety guidelines check out Safercar.gov. The best information on gas mileage can be found at Fueleconomy.gov. And J.D. Power ratings are always a valuable source of vehicle insights and research.
Armed with a budget and specific vehicle in mind you are now prepared buy a vehicle from a reputable dealership. Make sure to allow ample time for visiting multiple dealerships to find the right used car or truck. Always ask for a test drive before making a final decision. Never buy a vehicle that has an illuminated warning light, performs strange during the test drive, or hasn’t been properly inspected.
Perhaps the most stressful part of the vehicle purchase is the final negotiation. Shopping in winter or towards the end of the sales quarter may make it easier to negotiate a good deal. However, the most valuable tool in your arsenal is preparation. Negotiate with a number in mind and be prepared to walk away if the dealership isn’t willing to come to an agreement on a reasonable price. Once you have come to an agreement and finalized the deal on the car you love, protect it and your wallet with a protection plan from CARS Protection Plus.
There is no better feeling than getting out of town for a few days on the open road. Being prepared for life’s unexpected obstacles can help prevent a relaxing voyage from turning into a scary or stress filled encounter. CARS Protection Plus has put together this helpful guide to get your vehicle packed up and ready to go.
There are many parts on your vehicle that you can inspect and replace without the help of a trained professional. Check and replace worn wiper blades or dimming headlights. Being proactive in replacing these items can help avoid stopping for a quick fix in an unfamiliar place. Light bulbs and wiper blades are relatively easy to replace. Getting familiar with these do it yourself repairs can save money and untimely aggravation.
While you are at it take a look at the often unused components of your vehicle like your spare tire and vehicle jack. Don’t ever assume that your spare is fully inflated; tires can lose as much as 1psi of tire pressure monthly. Ensure that your vehicle has a jack and that it is in good working order. Remember to only change a tire if you can do so in a safe location, one which is level and free of traffic. Otherwise it is best to call for roadside assistance and let the professionals handle it. At CARS Protection Plus we offer several contracts with 24-Hour Roadside Assistance included.
If it has been a while since your last vehicle checkup make an appointment with your trusted mechanic. Now is a great time to get a fresh oil change and rotate your tires. Your service technician will be happy to change your air filter, check your vehicle‘s fluid levels and inspect the CV joints for excessive wear or damage.
When it’s time to pack up don’t forget to include emergency supplies in case of an unforeseen situation. A well prepared vehicle contains items such as road flares, a first aid kit, extra cell phone charger, a blanket, water and a rain poncho.
Protecting your family on long road trip can be easy. The truth is you can even protect yourself from the things you can’t control with a service contract with a reputable provider like CARS Protection Plus.
Purchasing a used vehicle can be a venture filled with uncertainty, but making good choices can alleviate stress and issues down the road. One choice that all used car buyers consider is where to shop. There are a lot of options available for the modern car buyer. Dealerships line the highways and the internet provides an endless stream of private owners selling their vehicles. Many wonder what their best course of action is when buying a used vehicle. The experts at Cars Protection Plus always advise their followers to consider the benefits of buying from a reputable dealer.
More often than not, choosing a reputable dealer will ensure that you are purchasing a reliable vehicle. Although consumer protection laws vary by state, all dealerships must follow Federal Trade Commission standards. Also with the abundance of used car dealerships, competition is fierce. Dealerships are looking to earn your repeat business! As a result dealers may “certify” used vehicles, offer warranties, and sometimes even offer a money back guarantee. When a vehicle is purchased from a private seller there is usually no such protection in place. It is possible to safeguard your private party purchase through vehicle history reports, paying for independent inspections or seeking out your own warranty from an authorized retailer. However, when you add up the time and expense, the choice to work with a reputable dealer becomes quite apparent.
At Cars Protection Plus, protection is in our name for a reason. We want to ensure that every driver on the road is protected from unexpected and costly auto repairs. One of the best things you can do to for your new used vehicle is to sign up for a service contract through an authorized dealer. Buyers should be proactive when selecting their service contract by carefully reading the contract and asking questions about anything uncertain. Realize that if any part or service isn’t mentioned in the contract, it’s very unlikely that it’s covered. Once you’ve selected a service contract that fits both your needs and your budget, you can leave the dealership with the peace of mind needed to feel comfortable about your purchase.
A car is a big investment. One way to protect your investment is to take your vehicle to a trustworthy mechanic for service and repairs. With many auto repair shops out there, it can be difficult to separate the good from the bad. Consider the following tips to ensure you are choosing a reputable mechanic.
Vehicle diagnostics and repairs should only be performed by a licensed mechanic. In order to obtain a license, mechanics must successfully complete classroom learning and hands-on training. In addition to licensing, mechanics may choose to sharpen their skills and expertise through obtaining additional certifications, such as the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). To earn this certification, they must have two years of relevant experience and pass knowledge and skills testing. The mechanic may also have manufacturer certifications for specific types of vehicles, which shows he or she is skilled at performing repairs for that particular brand.
Also, look for a repair shop that’s a member of the Automotive Service Association. Members must comply with the professional code of ethics set by the association. You can ask the mechanic for proof of licensing, certifications and affiliations.
Make sure the auto repair shop has a good reputation. Look beyond the company’s website for an honest opinion of its work. Yelp and Angie’s List are great resources for reviews. You can also find reviews by simply searching the company on Google. It’s beneficial to check the mechanic’s rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). The BBB can also inform you if the shop has any outstanding complaints.
Accepts Warranty Work
If you have a vehicle service contract from CARS Protection Plus, you need to be sure the mechanic accepts warranty work. Without a mechanic who accepts your protection plan, you’ll incur 100% of the expenses for the repairs. For the repair to be covered by your CARS protection plan, the repair facility must also be capable of performing tear-down to the point of component failure, determining the cause and extent of the damage, and rebuilding the component if deemed necessary by CARS.
Keep these tips in mind when choosing a mechanic. Remember to select a certified mechanic with a good reputation who accepts your vehicle protection plan.