Posts from ‘Safety’

Jul
10

Shopping Tips for Tall Guys

I am a shade under 6 feet, 7 inches tall. No, I don’t play basketball. Yes, the weather up here is fine… ha-HA! Good one. Now that that’s out of the way, let me pass on a few pointers I’ve picked up over the course of 17 years of test-driving new cars and trucks. If you or your loved ones are long of limb, these might help you out the next time you’re car shopping.

Apr
19
Learn to Drive Stick

T-shirts bearing this design can be had at Redbubble.com.

The manual transmission is dead. I refuse to acknowledge any evidence to the contrary. The fact is, autonomous technology—even semi-autonomous technology—is completely incompatible with the manual transmission, and that is where the industry is headed.

Dec
07
How to Push Start Your Car

It was once possible–and relatively common–to push-start cars with automatic transmissions.

Back in the “good ol’ days,” push-starting a car was a fairly common occurrence. In fact, the skills necessary to push-start a manual-transmission automobile were once considered common knowledge. Interestingly, “Money Saving Facts for Car Owners,” a handy informational booklet/DIY guide that was published around 1960 by Allstate Insurance, doesn’t even cover the process for manual-transmission cars, the authors presumably assuming that everyone knew how to do that. Instead, a handy chart in the booklet (which we’ve excerpted below) covers only the details of push-starting cars with automatic (and semi-automatic) transmissions.

Oct
15
Last AWD Sedans

2019 Nissan Altima

There’s a certain cachet to sedans with all-wheel drive. Though largely shunned by folks in states in which snow is not a real threat to commuting ease, AWD vehicles in general have caught on with the buying public, accounting for as much as 80 percent of the sales of certain crossover-SUV models in cities such as Chicago and New York.

Jul
13
Car-Care Quiz From 1959

What kind of car owner would you have been in 1959? Take this handy quiz and find out.

Sometime in 1959 or 1960, Allstate produced and shipped to policy holders a delightful booklet of helpful car-care hints. The digest-sized, 96-page publication, titled Money-Saving Facts for Car Owners, is packed with useful information, including a chapter on the wisdom of using premium gas, and another that deals with checking your fan belt.

Jun
29
How to Check Your Tire Pressure

Checking the tire pressure is one of the easiest and most-important maintenance items vehicle owners can perform themselves.

The expense of keeping good-condition tires on your car could as much as double if you fail to give the tires the love and attention they deserve. The primary causes of rapid tire wear are improper inflation, incorrect wheel alignment, incorrect wheel balance, wrong size for car and load, defective shock absorbers, and poor driving habits.

May
29
What is Ford SecuriCode?

The Ford SecuriCode system allows vehicle owners to access their cars and trucks utilizing a keypad and five-digit code. The older system keypad seen here is located above the door handle. Most of the current SecuriCode keypads are found on the driver’s side B-pillar.

As we enter the age of autonomous vehicles filled with cloud-sourced entertainment and powered by solid-state batteries, it’s good to know that there are still a few relatively low-tech car features of genuine utility.

Apr
13
Tire Size Decoder

The string of numbers found on the side of tires may seem confusing, but it’s easy enough to decode once you know what the numbers stand for. (Photo courtesy of Continental Tires.)

The easiest way to replace the tires on your vehicle is to work with a professional retailer who will help you identify the tires that best match the specifications of the car, as well as your wants and needs for ride quality, handling, and the types of roads and conditions in which you normally drive.

Jul
25
Teen Performance Driving School, Teen Defensive-Driving School

The author’s daughter queued up for an emergency-lane-change exercise at the Autobahn Country Club in Joliet, IL.

Like most parents, my wife and I are always looking for ways to give our daughter a leg up in life. We closely monitor and support her scholastic, athletic, and volunteer endeavors, we’re openly concerned about her general health and welfare, and we make a point of finding time to chat with the kid about life in general. My daughter would tell you that we’re pests, but she knows our hearts are in the right place.

Apr
12
2018 Nissan Rogue Dogue Concept

2018 Nissan Rogue Dogue Concept

New York Auto ShowIt appears Nissan is going to the dogs … for advice.

It’s no secret that dog owners are a dedicated bunch; one survey indicated that more than 80 percent of those polled felt that it was just as important for their canine companions to be safe and comfortable in their cars as it was for their human passengers.

To that end, Nissan showed off its Rogue Dogue (get it?) project vehicle at the New York Auto Show.

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