Friday, January 20, 2012

Top Tips When Buying a Car Online

Buying a car online might seem like a risky proposition. If you follow some sensible precautions, though, it can be quick, convenient and a great way to find a real bargain.
Buying and selling can be done via free classified ads sites and paid for ones too. There are also online auction sites. With any website that are selling cars, you will always find unscrupulous individuals looking to make money without actually selling you a car. Unfortunately, this is the nature of the beast, but depending on which site you use, you'll have a degree of protection. Sites that provide more space for photographs and other information, will give you a better idea of the vehicle's condition.
Before you buy, arm yourself with some research on the kind of price you can expect to pay for the sort of car that you're looking for. There are various websites that can help you to do this. You can also review completed listings on other sites to see what price the car's finally sold for. This will give you a good idea of the usual price range.
A reputable seller will normally take full advantage of the extra space offered by a website to post lots of pictures of the interior and exterior of the car, along with extensive descriptions. Honest sellers will include photographs of any rust, dents, scratches or other damage to the car so that you can make an informed decision. Be extremely wary of listing with only a few images, especially if they look as if they were lifted from a catalogue rather than taken by an ordinary person.
You should be especially cautious of any listings that are priced much lower than you would normally expect, especially if the car is very new. These are almost certainly fake. There will usually be some kind of cover story - the seller has debts or financial obligations he must discharge immediately, the seller is moving abroad shortly and needs a quick sale - in an attempt to explain away the unusually low price and win sympathy for the seller. Don't fall for these yarns, however, as they are classic signs of a scam.
Never forget to run an HPI check on any car you wish to buy. When you buy, you become the legal owner of the car so you must make sure it has a clean history. Some sites offer inexpensive checks of the cars listed, to ensure that they have been come by legally. If not, there are sites and companies that can do this.
Some sites require that buyers and sellers register a unique user ID with the site. The user's profile has records of their buying and selling history, including how long they've been a member of the site and what feedback they have received from other users. If you see that a seller has received one or two pieces of negative feedback in the past, you can take a look and see how the dispute was handled. This will give you a good idea of how the seller is likely to respond if any problems come up.
As well as sellers with large amounts of negative feedback, you should be wary of sellers who have only registered very recently, especially if they somehow have large amounts of positive feedback. Online criminals employ shills and multiple accounts to artificially boost their feedback rating. A long-standing profile with just a little negative feedback is much more reliable than a new profile with no feedback or only positive ratings.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

New or Used Cars - Which Are Better to Buy?

Buying a used car was once seen as a distinctly second-rate option. Your first car might be a used vehicle -- some old banger that you wouldn't mind bearing the brunt of your embryonic driving skills -- but after that, you'd want new all the way. In these straitened economic times, however, used cars are an increasingly inviting option. As the price of a new car climbs, the pre-owned vehicle sector claims a more and more significant share of the auto market. Car dealerships are responding to this, however -- they're trying to win back customers by offering more favourable terms and special deals on new cars.
Both new and used cars have their advantages. A new car is typically more reliable than a used one; breakdowns and mechanical glitches can cause a lot of inconvenience, not to mention expense. Used cars of dubious provenance can be a false economy, hiding hundreds or thousands of pounds-worth of future repairs under their carefully re-sprayed hoods. A used car also has a far lower resale value than a new one, making it a poor investment. While new cars tend to be far more expensive, you can often find extremely competitive special offers that can cut the cost of a new vehicle significantly. It's especially easy to find these online.
Another factor to consider is the rapid advance of technology. Buying an older car means that you won't get to benefit from recent improvements, such as fancier electronic gadgets or enhanced fuel economy. This can affect how economical your car is to run, since there may have been significant improvements even in the space of two or three years.
On the other hand, it's possible to buy used cars that are certified to meet a high standard of good repair and dependability. Some models are particularly reliable and these often retain a large proportion of their future resale value. It can sometimes be cheaper to insure a used model (provided it's in good repair) because the car's value is lower, making a quality used car cheaper to run. The Internet also makes it easier for you to track down quality used cars with low mileage and good provenance.
Not all changes made by the manufacturer between model years are necessarily for the better. You might find a feature that was written out recently more desirable than the current version. For example, maybe you'd prefer to have a manual transmission but the manufacturer no longer offers this in the car you're looking at. Choosing a used car also lets you explore more high-end options than you might otherwise be able to afford, with larger, higher-performance or more luxurious vehicles being brought within your price range. If you're a fan of luxury and the choice is between a brand-new Toyota or a used Lexus, the Lexus might suit you better.
In the end, the choice between new and used largely comes down to resale value. While all cars begin to decline in value as soon as you drive them off the dealer's forecourt, and while some lose their value more slowly than others, you'll recoup more of your money if you're selling a car with one owner rather than two. The drop in value between a second-hand car and third-hand can be very dramatic. If you're looking at your vehicle as an investment and plan to sell in the near future, a new car is the best bet as it will keep its resale value for longer. If you don't plan to sell anytime soon and simply want a quality, reliable vehicle at a good price, a good used car may well be the winner.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Chrysler LHS Transmission Control Module

The Chrysler LHS was in production between 1994 and 2001. It was a front wheel drive car, boasting a 3.5 litre V6 engine, a 4-speed automatic transmission and was based on the Chrysler LH platform. During its various production stages, the vehicle was complemented on its ability to provide a combination of high-end market related features and a reliable performance, comparable to other more expensive vehicles.
A Transmission Control Module (TCM) is a predominant feature of any vehicle of this nature and the LHS offered a complete package to motorists in respect of comfortable driving and performance. Only a few years before the partnership with Daimler Benz, various journalists compared the first generation of this vehicle with a German designed car. The ease of driving a car and the comfort associated with it is directly related to the automatic control provided by a TCM. Its fully electronic control may be a stand-alone module or one that is integrated with a Power-train Control Module (PCM, depending on the production year and application.
When compared to adjustment made manually in the past, for example to fuel/air ratios, ignition timing and other aspects, many motorists could be forgiven if they regard a TCM almost as science fiction. It operates with other electronic controlling devices, to provide data related to various aspects of driving conditions. This is achieved by a variety of transmission and engine sensors, which enable the smooth and efficient gear shifting. A solenoid pack is activated by the transmission, to affect changes in the hydraulic fluid flow, through the body of the valve to the various clutches used in the transmission functions.
The varied control factors of the transmission are maintained electronically by remote supervision on the vehicle, which includes shift points and firm functions; torque converter lock-up and overdrive engagement. Practically every aspect of an experienced transmission condition in the Chrysler LHS is monitored. It includes the fluid pressure, the temperature of the engine coolant relative to performance, input and output speeds and the rate at which the car is traveling. To function to its full capacity, a TCM requires various exterior data inputs. These could consist of a sensor to determine the throttle position, a wheel speed sensor and a control system for recording the traction of the vehicle.
The overall operating capabilities of a Chrysler LHS TCM could be described as a networking facility. The driver of a Chrysler LHS is assured that continuous controls are being conducted by their vehicle regarding aspects related to its efficient operation, particularly in adverse driving conditions. These include, neutral safety switches, braking indications and cruise control functions.
The Chrysler Corporation has been associated with development related to vehicle construction and performance for many years. The first recorded instance of electronic transmission control in the 1980's is attributed to them. Their transmissions systems have been proven in many and widely varying fields of operation, including extreme conditions and have led to many of their production models being unique in their overall design.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Looking For Better Gas Mileage? Do Not Be Fueled

With gas prices climbing, everyone is looking for ways to improve their car's gas mileage. Most people are aware of the standard ways to do that like slowing down, not stopping or starting quickly, keeping the tires inflated, replacing the air filter and getting a tune up. Those with a gas guzzler may be hoping for something that will really improve its gas mileage. They may be tempted to try one of the hundreds of products that are advertised to produce 20% to 60% better mileage. The question is; do those products work?
The Environmental Protection Agency has tested hundreds of these products. Not only did they not find any that significantly increase gas mileage, they found that some of them can damage the cars' engine and increase its emissions. Some of these products boldly claim that they are approved by the Federal government or the EPA. This is a blatant lie as they do not approve or endorse any products.
There are a myriad of products claiming to increase gas mileage. They claim to work in a variety of ways. Some of them are added directly to the gas tank. These products are supposed to make the gasoline burn more completely thus improving gas mileage. They usually contain either acetone or naphthalene which is the main ingredient in mothballs. Not only do these products not work, they can damage the entire fuel system including the seals, fuel injectors and fuel pump.
Another group of products claiming to improve gas mileage are fuel line magnets which can range in price from $10 to $400. These magnets attach to the fuel line near the engine. Supposedly, the magnet breaks up clumps of gasoline molecules allowing them to be burned more efficiently. Although they do work on diesel engines, they do not work on gasoline engines.
Performance chips are another group of gas savings scams. These chips are placed on the air intake temperature sensor. The theory is that the chip spins the air so that it mixes better with the fuel and therefore burns better. The chip which is actually a resistor simply creates turbulence which slows down the air flow and may decrease gas mileage.
Another bogus gas saving device is the electronic engine ionizer. In this device the rubber capacitor blocks clip onto the spark plug wires. When one of the spark plugs fires, this device claims to use that energy to fire the spark plus in the cylinders that aren't firing. That firing is supposed to break down the gas left in those cylinders to make the next firings more efficient. The rubber on these devices can melt onto the manifold and cause a fire. And, premature sparking can damage the engine.
There are also hydrogen generators on the market than can cost up to $2,000 and claim to yield as much as 100 mpg. The theory behind it is the generator breaks up the water molecules into pure hydrogen and oxygen. The pure hydrogen helps the fuel burn better resulting in better gas mileage. The problem is that it does not produce enough pure hydrogen to be of any benefit and because it changes the oxygen levels it can damage the valve seals and heads.
The bottom line is that if any of the hundreds of alleged gas saving devices worked, car makers and gas companies would be using them. Unfortunately, they do not work. The only options a person who has a gas guzzler has are to continue to drive it or replace it. Car dealers and the public do not want them so selling it is not a viable solution. That leaves car donation as the best option. The tax deduction is a very good benefit from a very bad situation.