DIY Car Upholstery Cleaning Tips

Let’s face it, cleaning your car upholstery needs to be done from time to time.  However, many people do not know the RIGHT way to clean their vehicles upholstery and often end up using too much water and/or soap.  Thus in turn their vehicle tends to lock in a must damp smell that can be hard to get rid of.  We have a couple DIY hacks to help you clean your car’s upholstery safely and effectively.


More is NOT better-  People tend to think that the more soap or water they use they better they stains and dirt will come out.  However, this is not the case and in fact harm the fabric.  Why? Moisture is NOT good for fabric and can damage it.  Also adding too much soap or water to your car’s upholstery can lock in moisture and give you a damp, musty smell.  With more moisture dirt tends to stick better and in the long run yo have more dirt and grim trapped in your cars fabric.

Remove Stains Before Thoroughly Cleaning- using a baking soda and water mixture gently scrub stains that stand out with a toothbrush.  Once you have scrubbed let the mixture sit on stains and penetrate for about 30 min before wiping off and absorbing with a dry clean towel.

Baby Wipes Are Your New Best Friend- Using a baby wipt to gently scrub out stains is another alternative to the baking soda and water mixture.  Why?  Baby wipes have the perfect amount of chemical free soap and moisture level to effectively work like magic.  Not to mention because they are free of chemicals, they are safe to use when children are traveling in your car or someone may have sensitive skin.

Club Soda- Club soda is known to remove stains from clothing if applied shortly after stain occurs.  It must be the bubbles!  So why can’t the same be said for car’s upholstery?  In fact club soda is another cheap and chemical free alternative when cleaning your car’s interior.  Just bolt on to stain with a towel and gently scrub with that toothbrush we talked about if need be!

Get Rid Of Odors First-  Before embarking on your car upholstery mission make sure to remove odors first!  We don’t want the little amount of water or moisture we are using to add to the odors that are already there.  So how do you get rid of odors without the use of a car air freshener that just masks the smell anyway?  Simply fill two bowl with white vinegar and leave one in the front seat of your car and one in the back seat overnight.  Make sure that all of your windows are rolled up tightly and all doors and trunks are shut tightly too. In the morning the vinegar should absorb all odors.  Dump bowls of vinegar and leave car with all windows and doors open until the smell of vinegar is now completely gone.  This is another safe way to eliminate odors without the use of harsh chemicals.  The environment and your vehicles passengers will definitely appreciate it!

Now that you have a basic knowledge and guide on how to properly clean your car’s upholstery we wish you luck on your cleaning journey.  Always remember LESS IS MORE!

Traditional Paint Job vs. Vinyl Wraps

With ever growing and updated technology many things in all spectrums of life are changing or improving.  Including the way automobiles are built and how they run in general.  Think self driving cars, electric cars, better GPS systems, reverse cameras, etc.  So why wouldn’t technology allow for better ways to customize your car that don’t include the traditional paint job!  These days you can embolize your car with your business/company logo.  You’re literally a driving advertisment for your business. Does a traditional paint jop offer this benefit?  Not exactly, and if some how it did that paint job would take for ever and propbably cost a lot of money.  To reverse it would be another story!  Enter in vinl wraps.  One of the trending and growing ways to update the look of your car without actually changing the original paint job.  In fact vinyl wraps have been proven to protect the life and quality of your original paint job.  If you decide you don’t like your vinyl wrap anymore, you may simply have it removed with no damage to the underlying paint!  As an automotive tips & advice blog we strive to provide the best advice and techniques when it comes to automobiles.  We think in a nut shell that vinyl wrapping is probably one of the best things to happen to the automobile world.  Why? Beacuse literally you can wrap just about any transportation device.  Jet ski, boat, moped, food truck, semi, company fleet of cars and more!  We thought  we would give the breakdown on traditional paintjobs vs. vinyl wraps!

Read more…

DIY Oil Changes

Not eveyone knows how to change their oil in their vehicle, but they should.  Having basic knowledge such as properly doing your own oil change is always a good idea!  Here is a video that breaks it down simply so literally anyone can do their own oil change.  Give it a try, you may just be suprised at your “mechanic” skills!

How Important Is A Transmission Flush????

Preventative maintenance is highly recommended to keep your vehicle running at top performance and increase its overall longevity. But how important to this maintenance are Transmission Flushes? And what exactly are the differences between a flush and a replacement of transmission fluid?  In fact what does transmission fluid even do for your vehicle and why is it so essential?  Ok, so first things first.  Transmission fluid is a type of oil that helps lubricate gears in your car’s transmission.  It also acts as a coolant to keep gears running at lower temperatures.  Overtime the ingredients in this oil start to break down thus throwing off the balance created by optimal transmission fluid.  When this breakdown occurs the temperatures are not balanced while also leaving gears less lubricated and working harder.  This imbalance can cause numerous issues throughout your car’s entire engine and can eventually lead to complete transmission failure which we all know is NOT a good thing at all.

Although it first seems a lot easier and quicker to just have your transmission fluid drained and replaced a complete transmission flush will actually replace more of your transmission fluid than just a replacement of fluids.  A complete transmission flush will replace old unusable transmission fluid while also cleaning the transmission itself in the process.  When having a complete flush done you will see a lot better of performance out of your vehicle than just a replacement of fluids as well. Infact a Transmission Flush encompasses all of the following:

  • Helps to reduce and rid transmission gears and parts from any debris or any other foreign matter that may have found its way into your transmission. Thus helping cause less wear and tear on engine parts.
  • Lessens wear and tear on all internal engine components thus creating a longer life span for your vehicle.

In a nutshell we recommend that you have your transmission flushed verses just replacing the fluids.  We also recommend following these transmission maintenance techniques as to help keep your transmission running with optimal performance.  

Transmission Maintenance Tips

  1. Check transmission fluid regularly
  2. Use the right transmission for your vehicle
  3. Have your transmission inspected annually
  4. Make sure to maintain/service engines cooling system
  5. Warm your car up before you drive it(esp in cold weather)
  6. Change transmission filter periodically
  7. Refrain from towing with your vehicle
  8. Have your transmission fluid flushed regularly
  9. Refrain from driving for a long period on a spare tire( creates unnecessary strain on transmission)
  10. Make sure to be at a complete stop before shifting between gears

If your follow along with these maintenance tips as well has have your car serviced regularly with oil changes, tune ups and transmission flushes you should see less to non existent transmission issues.

The Benefits of Window Tinting

Window tinting is very popular amongst car enthusiasts and helps to provide a unique look for ones automobile. By simply tinting your windows you can transform the look of your vehicle without a lot of money out of pocket. However window tinting is not just for car enthusiasts. Window tinting offers a ton of benefits to the average car owner that is often over-looked. In fact we think window tinting is the first thing a vehicle owner should purchase, after they buy a new automobile, and here’s why.

The benefits of window tinting

  • 1) Uv Ray Protection – Since the advent of the automobile the amount of people who have developed skin cancer on a single side of their body has sky rocketed. In the states, many individuals develop skin cancer on the left side of their body because of long durations of driving. Certain window tint grades can reduce 100% of UV rays and entirely remove the risk getting cancer while driving. Considering how many people spend a significant amount of time in their vehicle commuting or taking trips, it’s something to consider. Especially considering the fact that most people do not where sunscreen while in their vehicle, even while driving through the desert for hours at a time. Which is interesting considering the fact that under the same conditions outside of a vehicle many people would lather up with sunscreen – interesting eh?
  • 2) Eye Protection – Aside from protecting your skin, it’s very important to protect your eyes while driving. Although many drivers wear sunglasses, a lot of sunglasses do not entirely remove the risk of sun damage to your eyes while driving. There are many time while commuting in the early morning or evening where commuters are driving straight into the direction of the sun, making it not only hard to see, but extremely harmful for their eyes to look at. With window tint, you can make your car rides far more enjoyable since it will dramatically reduce the intensity and glare of the sun while protecting you from damaging your eyes longterm.
  • 3) Vehicle Protection – Not only will window tint protect you, but it will also protect your vehicle. Just as the sun can damage your skin and eyes, it can also damage your dashboar, seats, console and more. By putting window tint on your vehicle you will dramatically improve the longevity of your vehicle’s interior and reduce fading and peeling that can result from sun damage.
  • 4) Reduce Energy – A huge benefit for those living in warmer clients is that your car won’t be so darn hot when you get in it. That means less air conditioning, and less time running your car until it’s cool enough to get in. For vehicle owners in Nevada, Arizona, and parts of California window tint is a must have.

Here Are Some More Great Window Tinting Benefits

When Hail Damage Happens to Your Vehicle

As a Colorado native there is one thing that I know, hail storms can and will damage your vehicle! Many say the Colorado weather is schizophrenic- one moment the sun is shining and the next you are stuck in a hail storm, and this my my friend is the spoken truth. Weather happens. Look at Houston right now!

Colorado and Texas are two of the state’s most susceptible to hail storms. With Colorado’s hail storm season between April and Colorado and Texas residents being the victims to some pretty severe storms, we thought that we might give you a few tips on what to do if a hail storm damages your car.

First and foremost, it is a pain in the rear to get stuck in storm. Small pellets are beating the body of your car as you’re trying to steer safely out of it. You get out to check you car, and all you see is what looks like you were held up by a fire happy chap! The entire experience is less than ideal, but it can be quickly remedied and without decreasing the value of your vehicle, having to have body work and a new paint job, and in less time then both body work and a paint job.

It’s called paintless dent repair. The art of manipulating out minor dents, dings and creases utilizing specialized equipment, tools, and technology. Now PDR can fix more than just hail damage. However, being it is hail season and your insurance (as long as you have it) will cover hail damage.

Here are a few tips on what to do if hail damage happens to you, or really your vehicle.

  1. Get an evaluation. Send images in of many angles and views of the vehicle that has been damaged, or take your vehicle in for a free evaluation.
  2. File an insurance claim. The Colorado Dent Man will do this for you to aid in the process. Most PDR shops will handle this for you (and should). If you’ve already filed a claim then the shop will need the claim info and then handle the rest of the process
  3. Schedule a time to have your vehicle picked up. Bring your vehicle in for inspection and repair. The Colorado Dent Man will arrange to have your vehicle picked up for you as well. Professional, quality repair shops will make the process as easy as possible for you.
  4. Insurance company approves the repair process and the repair process begins.
  5. After the process has been completed a final quality inspection is performed to ensure that all damages have been repaired.
  6. Your vehicle is for pick up and to be on the road again.

One of the most frequently asked questions that we get is “Will my insurance premiums go up if I file a claim?” The answer is NO!  A hail storm is an act of nature. Your insurance will not go up from filing a claim. Insurance companies may increase premiums depending on the number of hail storm the state you are covered in receives each year, but not from you filing an individual claim.

If you have questions, feel free to reach out, or call you local Dent Repair Shop. Just make sure they are a professional company with experience. There are many pop up shops that come around when hail storms hit to make quick money. We always recommend working with a shop that has your best interest in mind.

Automobile Safety & Garage Safety!

Maybe this month’s full moon has made a dent in garages and cars…literally, or maybe it is a mere coincidence, but we have heard about and seen more autos colliding with garages then we could realistically imagine.

Let’s begin by saying the what spawned this post was “a car hits a garage encounter” by a customer at a friends shop. It was 30 minutes before Tim opened shop. An early customer decided to park right in front of the garage so that once the shop opened, pulling straight in was all that needed to be done. Well shop is about to open, but the customers car needs to go into a different area. She was asked to go ahead and move her car, which she proceeded to do, but rather than reverse to move where hs needed, she (accidentally) out the car into drive and hit the gas. BASH! Right into the shops garage. Needless to say, it was an accident, but not fun for my buddy’s shop or the woman’s car.

This post is meant to drive awareness…. Be aware of the garage! Not only will your car get a bit beat up, but garage fixes are not cheap. Your homeowners or auto insurance may the claim, but without proper insurance or if you’re a renter……be aware of that big piece of metal or wood!

We decided to reach out to the garage door company, Ahwatukee Garage Doors, that fixed my buddy’s shop garage. We wanted to get insights of how many garages they fix from vehicles hitting and damaging the good ol’ door. There response was, “more than you would think.” They also informed us that in the past month alone they repaired six, yes SIX garages that had been damaged by automobiles…crazy huh?! Two of those happened from teenage drivers, and the other four from adults. Maybe it is the full moon. Maybe people are getting antsy as the seasons change, who knows!

Well here is a little advice on how not to damage your garage with your car. It may seem crazy, but it happens. Whether it’s a tight fit getting your car into the garage or it’s lack of distance perception, take a minute to review what could save you a big headache, time and money.

  1. Attach a Tennis Ball. If you are unsure of the stopping point once you’ve entered your garage, hanging a tennis ball can be a great cue and forewarning of when to stop. Hang the ball so that as you pull the car in you know to stop when the ball is touching the windshield.
  2. Install Bumpers or Blocks. This is helpful especially if it is a tight squeeze. You can use pool noodles or block where you need the most. This will prevent you from hitting the sides of the garage and you car.
  3. Turn Your Headlights On. This tip is obviously helpful at night, especially at dusk when they may still be off, but the light is dim or you don’t have a light in your garage. It is always quite helpful during the day and will create more see space as you pulling in.
  4. Side Reflectors. If you park outside of the garage and are concerned about hitting the garage from pulling up to close, a great thing to do is attach a reflector to an upright pole and use it as a cue when to stop. Place it a few feet from the garage door on the side of your driveway (maybe even use 2). As you pull up, stop inline with the reflelctors. Especially helpful at night.
  5. Be CAREFUL. Slow down and take precautions. You will wish you had should you ding your garage door or your car. If you have a tight squeeze, really just pay attention. No cell phones or diverted attention, just total awareness with what you are doing.

A Few Things Every Car Owner Should Know….

Let’s face it, we drive our cars on a regular basis, but many of us don’t know much other than what type of car we drive, how to put the key in the ignition and how to fill up the gas tank.

With the amount of money that is spent to own and maintain a vehicle from auto payments to tune ups and maintenance, you would think more people would know a little more. However, all of the information can be overwhelming and honestly, not that interesting to most.

Maybe some other figure in your life takes car of the car and what it needs, or maybe that figure is the local auto repair shop. Regardless, you really have no clue about much other than you own your car.

Well today is the day to learn a few basic tips that you should know. It’s not mechanic school and you will not be quizzed at the end, but these few things will prove to be valuable and assist you when in need, but also give you a basic understanding and help you feel more confident as an owner and operator of your vehicle. You never know when some of these basic tips will really come in handy. So take 10 and read on!

  1. engine lights and indicators – these lights are a headache to see…..oh no what’s wrong with my car? That can mean you put off seeing what’s wrong until the car breaks down. Well these dashboard lights are symptoms of your car’s overall health. It is important that you see what’s going on. Turn to your owner’s manual for reference and take necessary action. You may have no need to worry, or you may need take your car in ASAP. Simply being aware of warning lights can and will save you from additional damage, and extra money spent.
  2. Tire Pressure – probably the most ignored maintenance issue with a car. The reason it is often ignored is because tire pressure is not regularly checked. Underinflated tires will not only wear your tires faster, but waste gas…..the end result is money wasted. The next time you fill up the tank, check your tire pressure and add some air. It really is simple, just not at the top of the priority list.
  3. Oil – the cars lubricant that keeps things running smoothly. Not only should you regularly have your oil changed, but you should make sure you check it periodically, especially if it seems oil may be leaking from your car. Dirty oil can even make your car run rough.
  4. VIN # – where to find it and why you need to know it. The VIN number is your car’s identity. It is on your car registration, but it is can also be found on your vehicle. Check the inside of door of the on the driver’s side and you should find your VIN#. This is useful for repairs and insurance.
  5. Brakes – your brakes should overall run smoothly. At times they may sound a little squeaky which can mean dust in the brakes or the need for new pads. Grinding, shuddering, scraping or any other weird sound or vibration should be immediately checked.

These tips are to keep you safe, as well as save you money. Keeping your car healthy will keep you safe and financially healthy. Automobiles are not cheap. Keep them running smoothly by being mindful of a few basic things. If you ever need assistance, your local Autozone or other auto parts store may be able to help you. If you purchase from them, example: windshield wipers, they will help you install them properly. Just make sure you tend to the health of your car.

Happy, Healthy Driving!

Four Reasons Why Oil Changes are Important for Your Vehicle

Ever wondered or asked yourself why you always have to take your vehicle for an oil change? Why can’t you just change it once and forget? Well, read on to understand the basics behind oil change and why it’s a very crucial maintenance routine for every vehicle.

Maybe it’s time you reflected on your car maintenance schedule. When was the last time you took your vehicle for servicing? What about an oil change? Many people forget to carry out regular oil changes. It seems like their vehicles continue working perfectly without these oil changes. This is very wrong. Understand that your car’s engine comprises of many components which are in constant movement when you’re driving. The purpose of having oil in your vehicle is to reduce the friction between moving engine components and prevent heat damage.

Over time, as you use the oil, it gets contaminated with debris and dirt from the car engine. It’s at this point that you need to flush this oil out and add fresh or rather new oil to ensure optimal functioning and performance of your engine. Here are four reasons why oil changes are crucial for the operation and performance of your vehicle.

Extends the Life of your Vehicle’s engine

If you want to add years of performance to the life of your car, regular oil changes and proper maintenance are not an option. Changing oil on a regular basis reduces the rate of wear and tear on your car engine. The dirt and debris contaminating the oil usually end up turning into sludge if not removed on time. The sludge that’s formed is what damages your engine thereby reducing its life and affecting your vehicle’s performance.

Cleaner Emissions

Have you realized that when your vehicle is using new, fresh oil, it generates less exhaust? Maybe it’s time you watched carefully. It’s our responsibility to take care of our environment. Regular oil changes will help you ensure a clean environment as less greenhouse gases are emitted.

Improves Gas Mileage

As mentioned, oil maintains engine lubrication which in turn improves fuel efficiency. When your vehicle is using old, contaminated oil, there’s poor lubrication in your engine which leads to poor fuel efficiency. That could be the reasons for increased fuel consumption. Make sure you’re using clean oil. According to the U.S Department of Energy, using the right type of oil and ensuring regular oil changes improves gas mileage over time by 1 to 2 percent. You can calculate and see how much you can save in a year or over the life of your car.

Better Engine Performance

Whenever you take your vehicle for an oil change, the oil, contaminated oil is usually drained and removed from the engine before clean oil is added. The grime, dirt and other contaminants in the oil are also removed. The new oil that’s added regulates engine temperature more efficiently. Furthermore, it provides the lubrication needs of the moving parts which allow for smooth movement. All these lead to improved and better engine performance.