Does Your Car Need a Little Love?

Does Your Car Need a Little Love?

Quick Car Maintenance Checks
You Can Perform Yourself.

 
This article was kindly put together by Giles Kirkland – follow him on Twitter @gileskirkland.
 
All cars require a little maintenance now and then, but finding faults early can be a key way to save money. Fixing a problem while it is still a minor issue is much better than having to hand over more money for more extensive repairs. Plus, knowing a problem early on can give you more time to find spare parts.

However, when you’re not in the habit of regularly checking your car, you lose the opportunity to save money in the long run. So, to help motivate you, here are some simple and quick inspections you can perform yourself.
 

Suspension System

 
Your car’s suspension system is a vital part of ensuring a smooth and comfortable ride. It also helps prevent damage from bumps and potholes. Because of this, a deteriorating spring or strut can cause problems if left unnoticed.

The easiest way to check your suspension is to push down on each corner of the car. Watch how the vehicle vibrates or ‘wobbles’ and notice if one corner dips more (or less) than the rest. This will indicate which corner has suspension issues.
 

Car Fluids

 
Your car’s engine is most happy when it has all the required fluids it needs. It doesn’t take long to lift up the hood and check your brake fluid, motor oil, coolant or antifreeze (you can also go ahead and check your windscreen washer fluid, too, while you have the opportunity).

Dipsticks or other markers will instantly let you know if you have enough. While being in between the minimum and maximum is easy enough to achieve, you shouldn’t be afraid to top up your fluids on a regular basis – depending on how much you drive – to reduce the risk of losing one fluid.
 
car oil and fluid levels image
 
By checking regularly, this will also indicate when there’s a possible leak. For instance, if your brake fluid is disappearing more quickly, without any change to your driving habits, you might have a leaking line. Take a look where you normally park your car and see if there are any damp spots where the wheels would typically be.
 

Car Wheels And Tyres

 
When it comes to driving, you can never underestimate your tyres. As the only parts of the vehicle to touch the road, these products ensure that your ride is smooth, that as much power as possible is converted into motion and that you can both grip and brake reliability.

Your tyres, therefore, should have a thick tread and the correct tyre pressure. The latter is easy enough to achieve with a sensor and pump, while the former can be achieved with a 20p coin: push this into the tread’s and check if the outer band disappears. If you can’t see it, your tyres are still within the 1.6mm legal limit (at least in the UK). Of course, more sensitive and accurate equipment is also available.
 

Lights And Indicators

 
A broken light bulb isn’t usually difficult to fix, but it’s hard to notice such an occurrence from the inside of the vehicle. The next time you have the chance, turn your lights on (while the car is parked) and look from the outside. This way, you might notice a dimming indicator or a difference in the brightness of various lights.
 
change a cars light bulbs image
 
The only difficult lights are, of course, the brake lights. This is something that might require a second pair of eyes, as you need to be inside the vehicle to apply the brakes. However, this is still something you can do every few months to get an early warning on any issues.
 

Fuel Efficiency

 
If you know how efficient your vehicle is in terms of fuel consumption, you can often use this to notice when something is wrong. It’s never a bad habit to track your mileage anyway and, between monthly mileage readings and fuel receipts, you can work out your average miles per gallon.
 
car fuel economy image
 
After a few months, you will know what the typical output of your vehicle is. This way, when it starts to drop, you will know something is wrong. This could indicate anything from a clogged air filter (again, very easy to check and replace), problems with the transmission or many other numerous issues.

As you can see, there are more than a few ways to check your car’s health. Most of these require no tools and very little time, yet they can save you plenty of heartache and money in the future.
 
Giles Kirkland

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Trusted Car Buyers

Trusted Car Buyers

Looking For a ‘Near Me’ Car Buyer?

 
 
sell my car today for cash
want to sell my car quick
 

Sell your car today with Trusted Car Buyers.

 

You could have your car sold with money in the bank in as little as 6 hours, I’ll show you how to get the best quote and what to look out for.

 

My Guide –> Cash for cars in as little as 6 hours

 

1. Get instant online quote 24 hrs a day
2. Declare your cars faults / damage the smart way
3. Go to a depot near me today
4. Secure cash in bank method of sale

 

Trusted Car Buyers – Reviewed.

 

Get an online quote here

It’s good practice to get several online quotes before selling to any ‘cash for cars near me’ service, such as We Buy Any Car.

And, from my experience car valuations will differ by several hundred pounds depending on which service you use. Of the last 17 cars I valued online, We Buy Any Car offered the least every single time. Of the 38 motorists I asked, 33 admitted they sold their car to We Buy Any Car for less than they were quoted online. Defects and battle scars are the biggest factors in valuation and We Buy Any Car slash valuations for what can only be described as, minor defects.

 

In contrast, Trusted Car Buyers values came out on top 17 times out of 17 and their current method is a little different to other services. They still take account of vehicle defects but are moderate in their price reductions.

 

You may know that there’s a section of Trusted Car Buyers website that asks you to declare any damage or faults your car has before you arrive at their depot to sell. In this article, I will show you what you need to include for their buy my car service and where to find it on their website.

When done correctly, these important steps can help you sell your car to Trusted Car Buyers for the same amount of money you were quoted online.

 

Car Buyers Near Me – How to fetch the most money for your motor.

 

Visit their website

Step 1

 

Visit their website, enter your vehicle’s registration number and click ‘VALUE MY CAR’.

 

garages that buy cars near me image

 

Step 2

 

Confirm your vehicles, mileage, numbers of owners, quality of service history and any optional extras. Next, enter your name, email address, postal code, contact number and the approximate time until you are ready to sell.

 

review of Trusted Car Buyers

 

Note – before you submit your information scroll down the page and you’ll find some VITAL INFORMATION. Trusted Car Buyers inform you that they are basing their online quote on certain assumptions.

 

we buy any car depots near me

 

To sell your car for the same amount you are about to be quoted, your car must:

 

1. Have at least 1 months MOT
2. Have two sets of keys
3. Have not damage including interior or mechanical
4. Not be imported
5. Not have a personalised registration number (as this complicates the sales process)
6. Never have been subject to an insurance loss i.e. CAT C or D, or been used for rental, private hire (including taxis), driving tuition or as a police     vehicle
7. Not be a Non-Runner

 

You will also notice a headline stating that you can update these assumptions after your initial online evaluation. This is a legitimate statement. I will show you how and where to enter your cars defects in a moment.

 

Review disclaimer:

Just below you will also read that Trusted Car Buyers hold the right to changing their online valuation should your cars history, condition or features have a derogatory effect on how much the car is worth.

 

Also noteworthy is a BACS transfer payment 3 days after the sale date. You can pay £49.99 should you want an instant bank transfer.

Once you have read and understood the detail click ‘GET MY VALUATION’.

 

Step 3

 

A few seconds later you are given your ‘initial quotation’.

 

cars for cash near me image

 

Below, you will see an ‘Update Assumptions’ link.

Click the link and you are taken to a new page

 

Step 4

 

There’s lots of information on this page but let’s focus on the critical areas as you scroll to the bottom.

 

car buyer near me

 

Here we find an image of a car that includes options for bodywork condition, mechanical condition and interior condition.

Using bodywork condition as an example here, you can click on an area of the car image and select a piece of damage.

Here, I clicked on the left wheel, left door (passenger side), windscreen and indicated some minor pieces of damage. You will see the damage declaration to the right of the screen as you enter each piece of new information.

 

damage declaration image for Trusted Car Buyer

 

Carry out the same steps for the mechanical and interior condition of the car.

I recommend that you are reasonably thorough with this step. But, I don’t see the need to disclose every single defect the car may have. For example, if your car makes a rumbling sound at 75 MPH whilst on the motor way, it’s not really in your interest to declare it. The Trusted Car Buyers representative isn’t every going to know about it so you may not feel it’s necessary to include?

However, anything that is visible or can easily be heard when the car is stationary with the engine running should be included else it will affect your sale price.

 

Finally, click ‘UPDATE VALUATION’ to get the actual price you will fetch for your car with Trusted Car Buyers.

 

  • My initial online valuation was £6,881.00
  • My final online valuation after including any damage, faults or alterations was £6,706.00

–> That equals a £175.00 reduction in car valuation.

 

Considering the damage included, a £175.00 price reduction is minimal. I carried out the same steps, using the same car with We Buy Any Car and found my valuation to be an incredible £411.00 less than that of Trusted Car Buyers!

 

To conclude my Trusted Car Buyers Review

 

If I were to use a ‘cash for cars near me’ service it would certainly be Trusted Car Buyers as they offered me over £400.00 more than that of their main buy my car competitor.

Trusted Car Buyers have locations including:

Bristol, Cardiff, Coventry, Leicester, Bletchley, Salford, Barnsley, Wakefield, Tamworth, Birmingham and more…

After your online quotation, the website will direct you to your nearest branch.

 

Find more car selling articles here and here.

Official cash for cars near me reviews:

feefo review image
cash for cars near me review image

Review source: Feefo

Marcus,
The Used Car Guy

 

–> Instant online quote
–> Get paid in as little as 6 hrs
–> Local depots
–> Secure method of sale

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Best Car Adverts of All Time

Best Car Adverts of All Time

Some of the greatest car ads and commercials of the last 50 years

 

Print, digital and TV adverts that sell

The car manufacturers advertising battle commenced during the 1950’s and 60’s and has since become an entertaining business for the public. From early print copy ads to the digital excellence of TV and online video commercials, manufacturers like Audi, BMW, VW, Mini and Honda have all had their turns at creating ‘live in the memory’ ads that amuse us, compel us and ultimately move us to buy their cars.

I’ve put together a small collection of the best car adverts of all time. Take a look at traditional, well-crafted print ads from the 1960’s right up to technical genius TV car commercials that I’ve combined into one five-minute video for your enjoyment.

In their own right, these advertisements score high, so they are in no particular order.

#1 – Daihatsu ‘Preferable to a Lamborghini?’

Daihatsu people carrier car advert

Source Daihatsu

Daihatsu uses a clever play on words to attract their core markets, 28-40-year-old men.

#2 – Ford Reports Some Sad News

Source Ford

How can they use the beautiful MK 1 Ford Escort as a Police car?

#3 – Jaguar Eats BMW for Breakfast

Jaguar tell us how they are superior to BMW

Source Jaguar

A clever use of food to depict the logo of BMW as fodder for the animal engine of Jaguar.

#4 – BMW Get Their Own Back on Jag

ad depicting that BMW are superior to Jaguar

Source BMW
This Jaguar does a 180.

#5 – Yes, the VW Beetle Has Its Limitations

classic VW Beetle print ad with basketball player

Source Volkswagen

Reverse psychology as VW demonstrates that the classic VW Beetle won’t suit everyone. Luckily for them, most of us aren’t 7ft tall basketball players. But they probably knew that, didn’t they?

#6 – Volkswagen Introduce Rear Parking Sensors!

vw-hedgehog-ad-for-rear-parking-sensors

Source Volkswagen

This intelligent ad suggests that bumping your VW into another car when parking would be a fatal mistake and one that they can help you avoid. The ad tells us a VW is as valuable as life itself. Sadly not.

#7 – Triumph Dolomite’s are Fast

classic Dolomite print ad image

Source Retro-Motoring

This messaging in this ad is a Triumph and appeals to any speed hungry male aged from fifteen to fifty.

#8 – Classic Mini’s are Small, Fast and Not For the Faint Hearted

classic mini print ad about speed and fun

Source Mini

The classic Mini is my all time favourite car so I had to include at least one of their timeless ads.

#9 – Controversy From Land Rover Range Rover

controversial print and bill board ad from Land Rover

Source Land Rover

This print ad kicked up quite a fuss and drew a lot of additional attention to Range Rover who are currently enjoying record sales and profits. Not bad.

#10 – Fiat Use Economy to Sell the Strada

Fiat car economy print copy advert

Source Fiat

During the 1980’s this Fiat car ad was hugely successful and helped promote Fiat further into the mainstream marketplace.

#11 – Porsche and Manhood

if you've got a small penis you need a Porsche 911 copy print ad

Source Porsche

One of the best car adverts of all time. Here, Porsche tap into the psychology of men using subtle humour and direct language. The Porsche 911 was already iconic but this print copy ad helped solidify its position as a leading Sports Car.

If the best print car adverts aren’t enough to quench your thirst check out my mash of four great TV car advertisements from the last 20 years.

 

If you have your own favourites feel free to send them to me and I’ll publish here. If you loved this article please hit the share button.

Marcus,
The Used Car Guy

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Drinking and Driving. Know Your Limits.

Drinking and Driving. Know Your Limits.

Marcus Rockey

Marcus Rockey

The Used Car Guy

Authored by Marcus Rockey, The Used Car Guy is a UK automotive blog for motorists that are buying or selling a used car. Free guidance, advice and information born through 26 years of direct experience in the used car industry.

UCG has been voted in the top 10 UK automotive blogs for 2016 and 2017.

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Driving your car after a night on the razzle

Letting your hair down without breaking the law

By now, we are all very familiar with the dangers associated with drink-driving. We can have a great night out, get a taxi home and sleep off most of the alcohol in our system. But, while we know we must never drink and drive, many motorists are unsure of when it’s safe to drive after a night of boozing.

Surprisingly, many drivers still don’t know that drink from the night before can easily lead to being over the legal limit the following morning, even after a sleep for six hours or more… Brake, the road safe charity, found that one out of five motorists confesses to driving the morning after a night of heavy drinking.

alcoholic driving and safe legal limits

Dr. Paul Wallace, Drinkaware’s Chief Medical Adviser, reports that how much alcohol is in your system is dependent on three factors:

  • How much alcohol you have consumed
  • How long it took you to consume the alcohol
  • How long it takes your body to eliminate it

Breaking Down Alcohol – How long does it take your body?

While everyone’s body differs slightly, the general rule is that for every unit you drink, it takes about 60 minutes for your body to break it down. However, this can vary depending on your gender, weight, age, metabolism, what type of alcohol you were drinking, how much food you have had to eat, and whether you are taking medicine, as well as the type of medicine.

The Truth about Drinking Coffee and Water to Sober Up

Although you may have heard that drinking lots of coffee will help sober you up, this is NOT true. Neither will drinking cup after cup of water or eating a huge meal. While rehydrating yourself is a good thing, it takes time for alcohol to leave your body.

When is it safe to get behind the wheel again, after drinking?

There’s no definite answer, but there is a rough guide you can follow. If you drink a large glass of wine (250ml/ 3 units), you should wait around 3 hours before getting behind the wheel. If you have consumed a weak pint of cider, lager, or beer (3.6%- though very few drinks are this week anymore), it will take around 2 hours for your body to breakdown the alcohol. If you drink a higher-strength (5.2%) cider, lager, or beer, you’ll need to wait around 3 hours for your body to breakdown the alcohol in your system.

Understanding the units in an alcoholic drink

While there is some confusion about this, the NHS reports there is approximately:

  • One single measure of spirits – 1 unit
  • One pint of lager, beer or cider, low strength (3.6%) – 2 units
  • 175ml glass of wine of average strength (12%) – 2.1 units
  • One pint of lager, beer or cider, high strength (5.2%) – 3 units
  • 250ml glass of wine of average strength (12%) – 3 units

A Look at the UK’s Legal Driving Limits

In England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, the drink drive limit is:

  • Micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath: 35
  • Milligrammes per 100 millilitres of blood: 80
  • Milligrammes per 100 millilitres of urine: 107

It’s impossible to determine how much alcohol you can consume whilst remaining within the legal limit to drive. To ensure you are safe to drive, it is recommended that you keep tabs on what you’ve been drinking and wait until your body has had plenty of time to break it down.

Marcus,
The Used Car Guy

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10 Ways to Make Money Using Your Car

10 Ways to Make Money Using Your Car

Contributor article from James Ruhle at Webris.com

Submitted 17th December 2016

Category: Blog

10 Surprising Ways to Make Money Using Your Car.

 
No matter where you live or what kind of car you have, there are quite a few ways you could be making money that doesn’t involve a regular job. With these options, you can make a little part-time income or a decent full-time paycheck.

BMW 7 Series image The Used Car Guy

Rent it Out

Have a car that you don’t drive very often? You could rent it out for a few days a week. For example, when you rent your car with Hyrecar, drivers for services like Uber and Lyft rent cars to drive.

Give Rides

If you would rather use your car to give rides yourself, Uber and Lyft make it easy to sign up and start. While Lyft is only available in 7 countries, Uber is available in 80 and counting.

Make Deliveries and Run Errands

Whether you have a van or not it’s possible to take on small delivery work. You could offer a package or food transport service or help get someone’s pet to the groomer and back. Some online services, like Nimber, will help you find a delivery on a route you’re going to use anyway.

Give Driving Lessons

Have you been driving for a few years? Are you good with people? Can you keep calm and stick to the rules? The flexible life of a driving instructor might be perfect for you. Before you begin, you’ll have to qualify, and the tests aren’t easy. This method can also take up to a year before you start earning.

Help Someone Move

Similar to making deliveries, offering your services as a mover will let you take full advantage of a larger vehicle and as much physical strength as you have. Though, you may want to specialize in moving from apartment to apartment or smaller households, depending on the size of your vehicle.

Get Paid to Advertise

You’ve probably seen at least a few cars with advertisements wrapped around them. Allowing your car to be covered in an advertisement is temporary and a way to earn by just driving your car with minimal extra effort. In fact, it would make a great combination with a delivery service or ride-share option. The easiest way to find advertisers is with a website like Use That Space.

Make a Video Tutorial

Are you good at car maintenance and repair? Making a few video tutorials detailing the process could make you some extra cash on a site like YouTube. All you need to do is post a few good videos, and you can get paid from the advertisements played on them.

Set Up a Tour

If you love your local area and would love to share it with the world, Use That Space could be just the business for you. Designing the tour and finding your first customers can take a little time but this small, part-time venture can grow into a rewarding career if you want it to.

Join a Car Boot Sale

Selling your stuff is a tried and true tactic for making a little extra cash. Your success will depend a lot on what you have to sell, the crowd the sale attracts and your bargaining skills. Rather than choosing any old spot, several places online as well as the local newspapers will give a list of larger deals nearby.

Get Kids to School

The daily school run can be a drain on many a parent’s time and energy. By offering to take their children to and from school for them, you can give them a less stressful and rushed day. The more nanny-type qualifications you have, the better, you will do in this role.

Conclusion

With any of these services, you will need to make sure to check with your insurance to make sure everything is covered. Once you’ve done that, you can be out there on the road and earn a steady income in no time.

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What to look for when buying your first second-hand car

What to look for when buying your first second-hand car

This is a contributor post from Dronsfields Independent Mercedes Specialists

Buying your first car is an exciting time, but many first-time car buyers can’t afford to purchase a brand new car. The good news is that there are loads of great second hand cars out there that are perfect for first time buyer. That said, you do need to check for the right things to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

I spoke to the mechanics at Dronsfields, an independent Mercedes specialist, to learn more about the most important things to remember when buying your first second hand car.

 

team image of Dronsfields Mercedes image

 

Check the history of the car

 

When buying a used car, it’s vital that you check the vehicle’s history before parting with your money. The car might look and drive like a dream, but you won’t have it in your possession for long if it’s been stolen.

How do you check the history of a car? There are a wide variety of vehicle search companies that you can use check car history at a reasonable price. You can often get a full comprehensive search done for about £20.

 

Find out its market value

 

You can do this before viewing the vehicle to avoid being overcharged. Second hand car websites, like Autotrader, are your best bet. Check how much the vehicle is being sold for, but take into consideration the car’s age, mileage and any damage (i.e. scuff marks or rust).

If you suspect that a seller is trying to overcharge you, don’t be afraid to tell them. The power is in your hands here, use your haggling skills to negotiate a fairer price. You’d be surprised how much you can knock the price down when you have cash to hand.

 

Arrange viewings for during the day

 

If possible, arrange car viewings during the daytime. It’s harder to see a vehicle in full light during the evening, you may miss a scuff mark or scratch.

TOP TIP: Try to avoid viewing a second hand car in poor weather conditions for the same reason.

 

Always ask to see the car’s service history

 

This is useful to know for two reasons

  1. You will be able to see if the car has had any ongoing issues over the years
  2. You will be able to see how much the seller knows about the car

 

The seller should know the history of the car, they should be able to provide MOT certificates and the car’s service history upon request. If they are unable to provide these documents, or they don’t seem to know much about the car, you might want to question whether they are the actual owner.

 

Take a list of questions with you

 

It can be tricky remembering everything, that’s why it’s important to take a list of questions with you to ask the seller. Some good questions include:

 

  • How long have you owned the car?

  • Why are you selling the car?

  • Has the car ever been damaged or involved in an accident?

  • Are there any issues with the car that you did not show in the photos?

  • When was the car’s last MOT?

  • Have you had any ongoing issues with the car?

 

This list is by no means exhaustive. If there is anything you would like to know that the seller hasn’t included in the advertisement, don’t be afraid to ask. If you don’t get the answer you’re looking for, walk away.

 

Check the mileage

 

Most of the time, car sellers are honest. However, there are times when dishonest sellers may tamper with the car’s mileage to make out that it has been driven less than it actually has.

There is no sure fire way of testing this during your viewing. However, if you are viewing a car that’s 15 years old with just 10,000 miles on the clock, alarm bells should start ringing. If it’s too good to be true, it probably is.

 

Take someone with you

 

If you take someone with you to view the car, you’ll be able to check important features like indicators and brake lights. You’ll also be able to discuss with them what they thought of the car after the viewing – they might have spotted something you didn’t!

 

Check under the foot-well mats

 

Underneath the mats in the foot-well is a great place for rust to hide, so make sure you check under here to avoid costly welding repairs later on.

 

Make sure the electrics work properly

 

There are a variety of features that you need to check on your viewing, that you might not necessarily remember to check during your test drive. These include:

 

  • Air-conditioning

  • Heating

  • Windows & sunroof

  • If the car uses remote central locking, check this works correctly, making sure all openings are secure

 

About Dronsfields

 

Dronsfields is a specialist family-run business offering Mercedes car and van parts, as well as repairs, at highly competitive prices.

Since opening their doors in 1968 the company has grown from strength to strength, now employing over 50 highly qualified staff that work across our various departments. Not only supplying high-quality services to most of the UK, they now also ship and export parts around the world.

The Manchester-based breaking yard sees a high turnover of vehicles but while the company continues to expand and develop, Dronsfields still pride themselves in commitment to quality and family values.

Visit their Facebook page

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