Car Repair vs. Car Restoration: What Are They and When Should You Do Them?

It’s nasty business getting involved in a car accident. Nobody wants to be that careless or that unlucky. But sometimes, it just happens, not as a result of your own doing, but rather as the result of the mistakes of another.

A vehicular accident is no joke. And while it’s shameful to have to say it, it’s also necessary as a gentle reminder because, with the frequency of vehicular accidents happening on a yearly basis, one might think that this fact has sunken into the minds of some irresponsible drivers.

It’s an unnecessary expense to have to handle a car accident. And this cost will greatly increase in price once lives are involved, especially the lives of innocent pedestrians, according to Blumenshine Law.

Now, let’s leave the litigating to the litigators. Let’s move on to what you all came here to read: repairing versus restoring your car. While both may seem to have the same goal in mind, to bring your car back to its original functional and roadworthy state, there are key differences between these similar words. Let’s take a look at some of them here.

What type of damage is addressed?

 The most defining difference between a repair and restoration comes in the form of what type of damage they seek to undo. Repairs are performed for any damage to the visual, cosmetic aspect of the vehicle. Things such as dents, chips, and scratched paint are all examples of cosmetic damage. They present no real damage to the car’s ability to function, nor do they have a significant impact on safety.

Don’t be fooled though, a dent-free car is undoubtedly going to be more valuable than one that’s full of dents and scratches. A car that’s properly pressure washed even more so, which is why repairs are still essential among car owners.

On the other hand, restorations address the damage done to parts that are vital to the car’s ability to function. Parts such as the engine, suspension system, and frame are all real threats to driver safety if damaged.

What tools are used to help the vehicle become roadworthy? 

As you may have guessed, a car restoration requires specialized tools. These tools come in the form of lasers and ultrasound scanners. This is because precision is of the utmost importance if one intends to straighten vehicle parts to their original state. This also means that your car also performs in the same way it used to, if not better than, before the accident.

Here’s an example of how a car is restored back to it’s brand new state

When should I repair and when should I restore?

This decision depends entirely on the parts of your car that were damaged in the accident. And, of course, there isn’t a better point of reference other than a thorough car inspection by a qualified mechanic.

As a general rule, if you’re involved in any car accident, you’re definitely going to need car repairs, whether it’s to fix a few dents or to refresh your car paint, all the way to the ever-important clear coat.

However, in any case, you’re still going to need a thorough inspection of your car so that you’re able to detect any damage that cannot be easily seen. You can think of this as a medical check-up of sorts. You need to know what exactly is wrong with your body. This is for you to be able to determine to what extent do you need treatment. The same holds true for your car after an accident. After all, you don’t want hidden issues to cause another accident in the future.

How to Make Sure a Used Car is Safe

There are certain things you need to look into more when you’re looking at a used car rather than a new car. You want to make sure it’s not going to break down but you also want to make sure it’s safe. Here’s what to look out for to make sure a used car is safe before buying.

How to ensure safety for used cars

Check Safety Ratings

Before deciding on a used car you should always check safety ratings. First check ANCAP ratings if you’re in Australia. ANCAP ratings are based on data from tests performed in a crash lab. You’ll also want to check UCSR (Used Car Safety Ratings) which is based on data from real world crashes. Always look for cars with the best safety ratings – the more stars the better.

Check the Paperwork

Next you should make sure the paperwork is all in order. To ensure the vehicle is safe, you’ll need to match the VIN number, date of manufacture, engine number (marked on the engine itself) and number plates with those on the registration papers. If the information doesn’t perfectly match up, it could mean that the car has been stolen or that the engine has been replaced without notifying the registration authority. You’ll also need to check if you should receive a certificate of roadworthiness as the seller is required to provide it in some states.

Check under the Hood

Before purchasing a used car you should check for signs of wear or damage under the hood. Look at the dipstick. Any grey or milky oil could mean serious engine problems. Take apart the radiator cap to check the coolant. It should be bright and clean. If you spot any oil in the coolant, this may indicate serious engine problems. You should also check the radiator cooling fans, the battery and its mounting platform for corrosion or other damage.

Check inside the Car

Apart from checking under the hood, you’ll also need to check inside a used car for damage. The first thing you should do is make sure the seatbelts are in good condition. Any fraying and they will need to be replaced. Seatbelts also need to be replaced after a crash. If possible, check for signs of rust under the carpet under the front and rear seats and in the boot.

Take it for a Test Drive

Before buying, you’ll also want to take the car for a test drive to check for any serious safety issues. Before driving off, start the engine and let it idle with the hood open. Watch out for any exhaust fumes. Open the filler cap. Fumes may indicate serious engine problems. Once you’re off, watch the dashboard for any warning lights and keep an eye on the temperature gauge. Listen for any rattling noises and if possible drive over speed humps to help check for any issues. Check the brakes and for misaligned steering. The steering wheel shouldn’t have more than 5cm of play.

If All Else Fails

If all else fails and you’re not certain whether your car is safe, check with a certified mechanic. They will be able to tell you if anything needs fixing or replacing and whether the car is deemed roadworthy. It’s always a good idea to run a car past a certified mechanic before buying.

 

Liquid or Aerosol Headliner Adhesive: Which is the Best Option?

The choice of the headliner adhesive that you use is very important when replacing/repairing your car headliner. This is because it is necessary for your headliner material and the board to bond permanently.

A headliner is that cloth that you see at the ceiling of your car. It consists of a board that is covered with foam-backed fabric by gluing them together before attaching it to the ceiling of the car.

Car headliners are very important not only for aesthetics but also insulation. It also protects your head during the impact into the interior roof area of the car.

You should replace the headliners whenever the fabric deteriorates or when the material and the backing starts to separate. Sometimes, the foam backing crumbles leaving the headliner fabric sagging.

When you see these signs, there is no need of injecting glue through the fabric or stabling the fabric up. This is because things will only get worse and your safety is further jeopardized.

Types of headliner adhesives

There are several brands of headliner adhesives, but they fall into two categories:  liquid and aerosol headliner adhesives. This makes it easy to find the best adhesive because both types may be sprayed on the fabric and work great but in different conditions.

You can spray liquid headliner adhesives using a paint gun and have very strong adhesive power. On the other hand, you can apply aerosol adhesives using aerosol cans. You can do this by removing the cap and then spraying it right away.

It may not provide a strong hold as that of the liquid adhesives. But it can withstand extreme temperature conditions without melting. This makes it an ideal adhesive if you live in hot climates. In hot areas, the interior heat in a closed up car or truck can get as high as 200 degrees.

Choosing a headliner adhesive

The problem with many people is simply choosing any adhesive that they happen to come by. Even those who go for the right type of adhesive find themselves buying one of the most affordable or widely available headliner adhesive.

What differentiates a good headliner adhesive from others. It is its bonding strength, the ability to withstand varying temperatures of the inner lining of the car roof and its compatibility with the vinyl material of the car as well as the fabric.

Liquid or aerosol adhesive

The secret of finding a good headliner adhesive is considering not only the type of the adhesive but looking at the respective features as well. Every brand of headliner adhesive has its own list of features that it boasts about. And it is cumbersome to keep going through them every time you want to buy an adhesive.

The good thing is that there are only a few features that really matter in a headliner adhesive. The primary one is the adhesive to ensure that you get a permanent hold that will not have you re-glue it every time.

Another important feature is temperature resistance. You do not want one that melts at the slight increase in temperature and makes your headliner to sag and fall off within a short time.

Compatibility with the mostly used headliner materials like vinyl and fabric is also very important. This is because adhesives are designed to work best on specific materials like vinyl, foam, fabric, rubber, trims, polyethylene and so on.

It is clear that both liquid and aerosol adhesives are good for their respective applications. Whether you are buying a liquid or aerosol headliner adhesive, choose a brand that has all the basic features before comparing other extra features like the price, staining, drying time and ease of use among others.

The Right Upholstery Fabric for Your Car Seats

Aside from an efficient engine and state-of-the-art features, a nice car seat is what many would want in an automobile. You can have the smoothest brakes and accelerations but all will surely be put to nil if you as the driver or your passengers are not comfortable in your seats.

There are different types of materials that you can use as covers for your car seats. While choosing the right one for you is easy, this task is still not something that you can do in haste. When you evaluate a material, you should look at the following dimensions:

  • Durability. Concerns for durability is nothing but normal. Surely, you will not want to replace your car seat covers often. Making sure that the material that you choose is durable will keep the need for constant reupholstering at bay.
  • Looks. People usually say that you shouldn’t mind what the inside looks like because others can’t see it. Don’t succumb to this kind of thinking. If there is someone that you need to impress, that’s you. So pay attention to how the material looks. At least you will feel that your investment is worth it every time you see and sit on it.
  • Ease in Cleaning. Even if the material that you chose is the most attractive, it will still be nothing if it’s not kept clean. We understand that you are a busy person and don’t always have the time to clean stuff. That’s why it’s really important for you to choose a cover that is not hard and time-consuming to clean.

Having presented those, we present here three options that you can explore.

Faux Leather

Now that people are becoming more aware of the need to protect animals and the environment, the use of fur and leather has become so regulated. Yet, those who’ve seen and touched leather in the past cannot just forget how good it feels and how elegant it looks. If you are one of those people, then getting faux leather is something that you should consider. It’s still as attractive as the real deal, but a lot less costly. It’s also surely free of any form of animal cruelty.

As for durability, faux leather is known to last long with proper care. Speaking of care, this material is easy to clean. It’s not porous so dirt don’t stick to it. Spilt liquid can just be wiped and loose dirt can just sucked out by a vacuum cleaner.

Microsuede

Microsuede is a man-made material that mimics the appearance of suede. It is actually made of fine polyester fibers. As such, it is soft to the touch and very inexpensive. This is really good news if you are someone who prioritizes comfort and practically above anything else.  

Users also say that it is not hazardous to pets and is very easy to clean. This is such good news if you have kids who tend to spill juice or other kinds of liquid on it.

Neoprene

Neoprene is the type of fabric that many car owners will recommend. It is the top choice of many because it is resistant to the elements. Being exposed to the sun does not discolor it. It also protects your seat from moisture because it dries quickly. Because this material is also what’s used in wetsuits, you can expect it to be easy to clean in case of spillage. Its current users also agree that neoprene is an attractive cover. It’s open for customization, too!

Aside from ensuring comfort, fixing your car’s interior is one of the surest ways on how to get a title loan at a significantly larger value. Because of this, it is important that the overhaul task is executed well.

How Wheel Locks Work to Keep Your Vehicle Safe

Investing in a good vehicle is an expensive undertaking. It would really break your heart if it happens that somebody steals it. NHTSA estimates that over 750,000 drivers fall victim to vehicle crime each year and the loss amounted to $6 billion and $5 billion in the year 2015 and 2016 respectively.

There are many ways to keep your vehicle safe, and even though car thieves are coming up with smart ways of stealing, it is those that have little to no security measures that are easily stolen. Careless mistakes like leaving your keys in the ignition or valuables in plain view, and driving without locking the doors or with windows down can prove costly.

Anti-theft devices

Carjacking also does happen, but there are many anti-theft devices that will help you keep your vehicle safe. They include steering wheel locks, tire wheel locks, kill switches, electronic tracking systems, and baby monitor among others.

The theft of wheels, tires, and rims especially those that are high-end and attract a good price is common. Yet much of it go unreported.

Experienced thieves who work in groups can leave your car on blocks in under 10 minutes whether they are jacking it up or using a tow track to elevate it. One of the most effective ways to prevent this is by using the best car wheel locks which make lug nuts extremely difficult to remove.

How wheel locks work to keep your vehicle safe

Before you install the wheel lock lug nuts, you need to remove the existing lug nuts first. Start by removing the hubcap using a lug wrench if it is present. It will enable you to access the log nuts.

After this, you need to check the lug nuts if they require any special tool for their removal. If not, you need to loosen all of them using a lug wrench before jacking it up for replacement with wheel lock lug nuts.

Just like lug nuts, you will need to install wheel locks correctly to avoid them getting loose with time. For this, you will need to install using the right torque and torque wrench. You also need to place the wheel locks securely on the bolt. So that you do not round the keys off. The danger of not doing this is having a hard time when you will be removing the bolt.

Wheel locks use a specific key which comes with the set for installing and removing them. This is because they only operate in a specific pattern. This simply means that you need to be careful not to misplace your wheel lock key. This is because you will need it when removing the locks in the future.

When removing the wheel locks, insert the key into the same socket that you use to remove other lug nuts. Then, use the socket wrench to remove the wheel lock lug nuts.

Types of wheel locks

Every wheel style has its own different wheel lock and you can only remove them using a specific key. A wheel lock set consist of four to five lug nuts together with a device used to remove the lugs.

There are different types of wheel locks depending on their design and materials that they are made of. They include locking lug-nuts that have rough interior design but smooth exterior surface. This makes it extremely hard to open without a key or even break it with a wrench.

There are the spline drives where lug-nuts are fitted into smaller lug holes with a closed-end design and more gripping power.

Car manufacturers sell alloy wheel locks. They are characterized by a solid alloy material finish and a special socket. There is also the clamp wheel lock that is placed around the wheel and the rims so that the vehicle cannot move unless the clamp is removed.

As the number of tires, wheel and rim thefts increase, it is important that you use wheel locks to keep your vehicle safe and have peace of mind every time you park your car.

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