Road Safely Travelled

Being safe on the road does not only mean careful driving and road courtesy. It should also mean that the vehicles being driven are road worthy.
Being safe on the road does not begin at the moment the driver sits behind the wheel. It starts at the moment the decision to buy a vehicle is made.
Even when buying brand new vehicles, the buyer must be aware of the safety features. Most manufacturers and dealers offer you safety reports and statistics and help keep your home cool. As a buyer, we must have a complete and concrete picture of the car we intend to buy. The decision will be influenced by our knowledge of the general terrain the vehicle will be mostly treading, by budgetary considerations, by how the vehicle will be used for, by the track record of the manufacturer’s after sales services, and even, by how trustworthy the salesman appears to be.

The decision becomes a bit tricky when buying a second hand or used vehicle. The previous owner’s care or neglect of the vehicle spells the difference between your own and your loved ones safety and danger. Different locations enforce different levels of strictness in implementing roadworthiness and safety of used cars. Most, however, impose the requirement that sellers, dealers, and previous owners display vehicle safety certificate on the “face” of the vehicle to be sold. Even if you intend to conduct pre-purchase inspection yourself or by a mechanic, demand that the certificate be presented. Although it is only an indicator that the vehicle passed minimum safety standards, it gives you an idea on the dependability of the seller. 

Be aware of the inspection coverage conducted in obtaining the certificate from government accredited inspection outlets. Transmission, compression, suspension, radiator, brakes, lights, and body are the usual features that will be checked.

While pre-purchase inspection is a more comprehensive check-up of all parts and features of the vehicle. It is customizable depending on the thoroughness you want done. Other than the those already mentioned, you or your mechanic can also check the tires, exhaust, instrument gauges (e.g. odometer, speedometer, tachometer, and fuel gauge), windshield and windshield wiper and fluid, heater and ducted air conditioning Gold Coast, stereo, exterior lights including headlights (low and high beams), hazard lights, tail lights and brake lights, interior condition of the seats and cushions, trunk, knobs, buttons and levers, mirrors, and many other elements you want examined. You may also ask to take the vehicle out for a test drive. A test drive is an excellent measure how well the vehicle shifts, runs, steers, and brakes.

It is wisest to secure both vehicle safety certificate and pre-purchase inspection reports before buying a car or any light vehicle. The first is the seller’s assurance to you that he extended full diligence in the sale; the second is your assurance to yourself that you have exhausted all possibilities to ensure your protection and of your fellow motorists.

Maintaining Your Air Conditioner

In the height of summer, the heat can be quite unbearable to the point that you keep yourself closeted inside your house. Air conditioning can improve indoor air quality and adjust the temperature so that you will be comfortable no matter what the outside temperature is. But there are a few things you should know about maintaining an air conditioning system. Practising these maintenance techniques will help you prolong the life of the system as well saving you quite a lot of money in the long run.

Just as you change oil filters in a car, the air filter of the air conditioner has to be changed as frequently as every three months. You can start by inserting a new filter when the summer begins and change it once 3 months have gone by. The frequency of changing the filter will have to be increased if you suffer from allergies or you live in a location prone to strong winds or vicinity to a construction site. It is better to invest in some quality filters. Pleated filters are a good example. If you have a ducted air conditioning unit it is advised to bring in a professional at least once a year to look at it.

One way of checking if the air conditioner is functioning properly is by checking the temperature of the air coming out of the vent and that of the air going back to the return vent. Compare the two temperatures and there should be a difference of 15 to 18 degrees (Fahrenheit) to signal effective performance. A higher difference can be a sign of a blocked air filter while a lower difference will indicate a problem such as a decrease in the level of Freon. As the system would use up more energy if it’s not up to its full performance, it is better to go for air conditioning repair.

The thermostat should be kept at a normal temperature for a smoother AC performance. And if there are renovations currently happening in your home, you have to consider the protection of the ducts. In order to achieve this, you can fix temporary air filters to the return vents found on the walls. This way you can avoid dust getting into the ducts and causing blockage. The ductwork has to be checked thoroughly for leaks as well. You will generally find two kinds of ductwork, namely, rigid metal ducts and flexible ducts. Flexible ducts, while it is easier and faster to install doesn’t have a very long life compared to metal ducts.

The ductwork usually runs through your attic and these spaces are generally hot due to the close proximity to the heated roof. This calls for insulation that will prevent the impact of outside temperature tampering with the cool air inside the ducts. The outer unit or the condenser of the air conditioning system has to be cleaned of dirt. If debris collects around it over time, the system will have to work harder thereby increasing the energy used and overall cost.