Cars-and-Trucks Must-Haves: An Overview of Useful and Functional Automobile Accessories

They’re the king of the road! Cars-and-trucks probably inherit the convenience that enabled different generations to drive around the world and over the roads, cliffs, and terrains’ roughest rally courses. It wouldn’t be the same without these cars-and-trucks playing a big part of every person’s lifestyle. Therefore, to enhance your car-and-trucks’ beauty, functionality, and safety, here are various accessories to take you further in the best ride of your life.

Cars-and-trucks safety accessories

There are a great number of inexpensive safety accessories as a way of reducing the risk of theft. Metal bar locks and locking nuts are just some of the best safety automobile accessories you can get hold of. Although there are no alarms that are utterly foolproof, still the use of these anti-theft accessories will greatly act as good deterrent against the amateur thief.

The use of cars-and-trucks mobile entertainment

When you’re going to purchase additional audio equipment to enhance and satisfy your listening pleasure, it is essential that you particularly search for excellent head unit with easy-to-reach and manageable buttons and dials which you can easily press on without the need to take your eyes off the road.

Cellular car phones for good communication on the move

Custom-mounted phones on your car entail the use of specialized external antenna for better and stronger reception. If you want to purchase one for your automobile, it is best that you look for a ‘hands-free kit’ that consists mainly of a speaker and a microphone for a safer use without the need to take your hands off the steering wheel.

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Handle Relocator Installation

For 1999 and up Chevy/GMC Trucks

For best results, please read all instructions thoroughly prior to attempting installation of your tailgate handle relocator. Sir Michael’s recommends the use of approved hand, eye and ear safety equipment while performing this installation.

1. Remove the tailgate from the truck and place (factory handle opening up) on saw horses or work bench.

Fig. 1
2. Remove snap-in plastic trim panel around tailgate handle. NOTE: Care should be taken during this process as not to damage the two clips that hold the trim panel in place.
Fig. 2
3. Turn the tailgate over (factory handle opening down) and remove the tailgate handle by Disconnecting the tailgate handle mounting hardware and latch linkage rods.
Fig. 3
4. Align the supplied template with the three tailgate handle mounting holes and mark sheetmetal for removal.
Fig. 4
5. Cut the previously marked section of sheetmetal away from the inside of the tailgate using a die grinder or jigsaw with a steel cutting blade.
Fig. 5 Fig. 6 6. Next, bolt the tailgate handle to the tailgate handle relocator mounting plate using the supplied hardware. Use the studs supplied to bolt the handle to the relocator. Damage to the outer shin will occur if you use the factory bolts.
Fig. 7 Fig. 8
7. Place the tailgate handle relocator plate with handle in place into the tailgate and center relocator. Use the supplied #8 self-tapping screws. Re-attach the tailgate handle linkage to the tailgate handle. NOTE: Flip plastic clips over so they insert from the bottom.

8. Now carefully snap the factory plastic trim panel back around the tailgate handle. Turn the tailgate over (original handle opening up) and grind paint off the area around the tailgate handle recess (approximately two inches) and weld the provided filler panel in place. NOTE: DO NOT ATTEMPT TO WELD ONE CONTINUOUS BEAD AS EXCESS WILL DAMAGE OUTER TAILGATE SKIN.

9. Finally, grind down the welds, apply body filler, block sand, primer, and paint to match. Now you are ready to re-install the tailgate handle relocator equipped tailgate back into the truck.

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Hot LED Accessories for your truck or SUV

Truth is, nobody knows exactly how much longer LEDs last than regular bulbs, but there are still LEDs in computers from the 70s that are happily blinking away with no ill effects.

Less Power
LEDs physically use less power than their incandescent counterparts and can output more light too. And that’s about all there is to say on that. They use less power, so manufacturers can cram more of them in – for a brilliantly bright light.

The Cool Factor
Plus LEDs are the latest in lighting technology, so they look cool as hell. Remember back to the first time you saw the awesomely brilliant lights on the back of a Cadillac CTS fire up. In less than an instant the whole tail light bursted to brightness and you were blown away.

Light Bars

LED light bars have only been in the truck accessory marketplace for a few years. Basically, the LED Light Bar is either a 48-inch or 60-inch long strip of LEDs that fits in the dead space between the bottom of your tailgate and rear bumper. This strip of LED’s can serve as a brake light, a running light, and even blink with your turn signals.

Installation can be as simple as plugging the light bar’s plug into your trailer connection and using the supplied adhesive to attach the light bar. The light bars can be installed with sheet metal screws for permanent mounting, and some bars need to be hard-wired into your wiring harness.

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Tail Lenses

Upgrading the tail lenses on your truck is always a good idea. They’re affordable, they look great, and you want them. So why deprive yourself? But now you have an extra choice when picking out tail lenses – LEDs. As soon as new Caddies started coming with LED taillights the aftermarket started scrambling. They looked great, were brighter than anything before, and they lit up so fast they looked like alien technology.

There was some scrambling in the truck accessory marketplace for awhile, but the hobbyists and low-ballers have shaken out of the industry and there are some really superb LED tail lenses out there right now.

Check out the Technostalgia LED Conversion Kit: (for classic trucks)

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LED Light Bars

Yes, trucks have been available with third brake lights for many years, but adding a fourth brake light? That’s just bonkers…or is it? What’s crazy about adding another safety feature that also looks good? Nothing. If you can add just one more layer of protection to save you from the tailgater behind you, it’s worth it.

Your truck already has brake lights, but does it have the high-performance, long-lasting technology known as LEDs? Probably not. LEDs light up so fast, many consider them to be “instant-on” technology, alerting others to your stopping intentions long before your regular bulbs even warm up.

And aside from the safety angle, what about looks? If your truck is already decked out with the latest in lighting technology, this light bar is just one more trophy to add to the case. Check! LED Light Bar? Sign me up!

But which LED light bar is a truck owner to go with? We know that it can be daunting to choose one of a few similar products. That’s why the crew at Stylin’ Trucks has put together this helpful little primer. Scroll down and see which model is the right one for you.

Alert others to your intent to stop with a new LED Light Bar. Mounting between your truck or SUV’s tailgate and bumper, the LED Light Bar is hidden to casual observers. But once you step on the brake pedal, the sealed LED’s spark to life and really grab the attention of those behind you.

The LED Light Bar also works as an active turn signal, blinking either the left or right half of the bar when engaged. It plugs into any standard 4-pin trailer connection.

Add a level of safety that only the Fire & Ice LED Light Bar can provide. Working as a four-function lighting unit, the Fire & Ice LED Light Bar not only works as a brake light, running light and turn signal – it also illuminates brilliant white LED’s when in reverse.

And it mounts easily in the dead space between your tailgate and bumper, so it’s virtually invisible until illuminated. This unit plugs into a standard 4-pin trailer connection.

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Auto Car Transport Carriers

Auto transporting is also known by the name vehicle shipping. It is the process of moving or transporting a vehicle from a source point to a destination point. But necessarily the source point doesn’t mean your home, and neither does the destination point refer to either your new house or vacation home. You could move a vehicle from one place to another. Above all, auto transport is a highly specialized service all by itself, so you need to employ an auto transport broker or an auto transport carrier.

Transporting a vehicle is not such a simple task. Normally a special truck is needed for this process. So because of this reason, most of the good moving companies do not embrace car transporting in their list of services. Normally auto transport companies entail a two – to three – week leeway former to your preferred transport date. They also use this time for planning the transport of your vehicle properly. If you own a car and are moving out to move to a new house, or simply want to go out for a long vacation with your car in drag, then you need auto transport services.

Car moving is not something you want to leave as it is to anyone! Whether you’re a dealer, manufacturer or individual whoever may be, the most technologically advanced service available for your car’s journey can be offered door-to-door, coast-to-coast. There are several reasons why you may have to use an auto transport service for shipping your car or truck, van or SUV, when driving it from place to place just isn’t practical or possible. There are a variety of ways which you can go about doing the transporting, based upon your budget, or the exigency with which you need your car to reach your destination.

If you currently own a car and if the car is in the process of moving, the most bothersome thing that is to be considered is how you’ll get your vehicles from your current residence to next one. You may be moving a great distance, or even overseas, and if don’t have any opportunities so far shift the car of your own. Of course, you need your car at your new home, and you need it there as soon as possible, so you have to consult an automobile transporter for shipping your car from point A to B. Most transport companies, whether they ship your car by train or by truck, and have fully computerized shipping services, so that you can trail the status as well as position of your car in transportation, just in case you’re the worrying type.

Before sending your car on a cross country or international trip, make sure that you have it in tip-top shape, and get a record thoroughly of inspection that will make note of your car’s mileage, any noticeable dents grates or nicks, any cracked glass, or other deficiencies. Also make certain that everything is well covered as well as accounted for when you got to purchase insurance for your car, so that it will be made clear within the legal contract that you and the transport company will draft. This becomes more vital just in case any physical damage is done to your car during transport, and so you’ll be having a proof and justification with which for seizing the company perfectly accountable.

Finally there arises a question of whether to ship your car by train or by truck. Of course you will probably be flying to your goal, but if you were traveling on the ground you might have a preference of traveling in train than by car. But there are both advantages and disadvantages in train traveling. If you choose to go by train, the biggest inconvenience may be that you have to pick up your car from the terminal they ship it to. Suppose if you want to get your car right to your new front door, or just won’t have the time to head out and pick up your car from the lot they’ve deposited in it, this will be a major crisis. In this case, your best option is to choose with shipping your automobile only by truck, and in most instances, you can do directly perform shipment to a specific street address with an unreasonable difference in prices.

Shijina is an expert author for car shipping and car transport. She written many articles like auto transport,vehicle transport and vehicle shipping. For more information visit our site Contact me at

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Pure LED 3rd brake light

Putco’s Pure LED 3rd brake light is brand new to the market and only available at Stylin’ Trucks, a 20-year leader in providing performance parts and accessories for trucks and SUVs.

Using the newest lighting technology, the exclusive i-on chrome coating applied to the interior lens creates greater reflectivity, while LEDs shine through for the brightest, most stunning look. When off, LEDs hide behind Putco’s patented Ion Chrome.

Unlike other LED accessories that require manual splicing of wires, Putco’s Pure LED Third Brake Lights use factory plugs for true plug-n-play installation.

Lens finishes include Clear, Smoke or the exclusive Ion Chrome.

Customers are already raving about this product. “I have the taillights and third brake light for my 2005 Nissan Frontier and it definitely set it apart from the rest. If you’re going to get a conversion light kit for your vehicle, these are definitely the set to purchase,” says one customer review.

Another reviewer echoes this sentiment saying, “Many people have asked me about this third brake light and I have only had it on for a few days. The i-on chrome is like a two way mirror so during the day you can’t really see the LED bulbs inside, but at night you can see them fine. Took 2 minutes to install.”

The decision to accessorize your truck or SUV with the hot look of LED truck accessories is certainly an easy one. For one, they last up to a million times longer than the same size incandescent bulb, and for another…I just made that up. Truth is, nobody knows exactly how much longer LEDs last than regular bulbs, but there are still LEDs in computers from the 70s that are happily blinking away with no ill effects.

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Clear Corner Lens Buying Guide

1. You’re lucky that you just read that instead of heard it. Let me tell you; I’m a horrible singer.

2. I know that the words are wrong. See, I took poetic license and changed the words to serve my purpose.

Right know you’re wondering just what the heck I’m talking about. Well, I’m talking about turn signals, or more importantly, changing your stock yellow or amber turn signals to clear. Whether you choose to call them corner lenses, parking lamps, clear marker lights, or clear bumper lenses; they all mean the same thing. And they should all be clear.

A Matter of Style
Not only is it easy and inexpensive to switch to clear lenses, it’s also a great way to do a subtle change to your truck that makes people go “Did you do something to your truck? It looks different…”

Now that I’ve got you confused you’re about to ask me, “Is a small change like that even worth it?” Yes. Every modification you make, no matter how small, contributes to your truck’s overall appearance.

Take a look at the 1995 GMC Sierra in Fig 1. It’s a nice looking truck and there are millions just like it on the road right now. This baby has a long way to go to being a custom truck. But, one of the first truck accessories you can add is clear lenses.

1. A bone stock truck with bone stock turn signals. There are millions of these on the road.

If you take a look at Fig 2, it shows what this type of truck looks like with clear corner lenses and parking lenses. Isn’t it nice how the turn signals match the headlight? It is little details like this that make a nice truck into a really nice truck.

2. This custom GMC Sierra has Clear Corner Lenses and Clear Parking Lamps.

Style Options
I’ve been using the term Clear Corner Lenses or Clear Parking Lamps pretty loosely. We call them all “Clear” but there are actually a few different options.

Clear: These are actually the least clear of the options. They usually feature a white-looking “frosted” glass – kind of like a white bicycle reflector (Fig 3.)

3. These are examples of “Clear” corner lamps for various vehicles. Notice the resemblance to a white bicycle reflector?

Euro Clear: Instead of “frosted” glass, we have clear glass on the outside. You can clearly see the chrome inside and any bulbs that are installed (Fig 4.)

4. Examples of Euro Clear lenses. Notice how you can see through the glass and into the lens. If these were on a truck, you would be able to see the bulbs inside.

Diamond Clear: These also have a clear glass, but on the inside there is a diamond cut pattern in the chrome. This can help give your turn signals a brilliant shine when flashing (Fig 5.)

5. Some examples of Diamond Clear lenses. Still clear, but with a diamond cut pattern on the inside.

Other: There are a few manufacturers on the market that offer something a little different. We’ve got some with flames on them, some that stick out like 3D, and some that are smoked (Fig 6.)
6. Some other options for turn signals. Top: Clear w/ Flames Middle: Black Bottom: 3D Titanium

Advice for the Road
Take what you’ve learned here and use it for good, not evil. Use this knowledge to better your vehicle and the vehicles of your friends. If I’m walking through the supermarket parking lot and I see a truck with clear lenses, I walk over and give the owner a compliment. They’re happy to get the compliment and really happy that I even noticed their turn signals. You try it some time…

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Tire Basics

Tire Classes

Passenger Tires: Passenger tires are designed with decent all-around characteristics. They can handle a bit of snow, rain and are quiet enough on the road. Also, these tires feature a tread design and a rubber compound that gives you the most longevity for your money. Passenger tires feature a tread pattern that is omnidirectional, meaning it doesn’t matter which direction the tires spin in. If it’ll roll, you can go.

Performance Tires: Performance tires are designed to have better handling and/or handle more speed. The better handling and speed characteristics come from the specialty tread pattern and a softer tread compound. Performance tires feature a tread pattern that is directional, meaning that the tires are designed specifically to roll in one direction. This allows the tire engineers to shape the tire and treads for maximum grip and maximum handling.

Also, the Tread Compound, or rubber mixture, on performance tires is softer than on passenger tires. This softer tread compound grabs the road better, giving you increased handling and better traction. The drawback is that this softer compound also wears down quicker. So you get better handling and traction, but less mileage from the tire.

Competition/Racing Tires: Competition Tires are dedicated track-only tires designed for optimum performance. Some are federally approved (read: legal for the street) but they don’t have much tread life and are no good in any kind of rain or snow. Save these shoes for autocross or road racing.

Light Truck: Light truck tires are those designed for most consumer (non-commercial duty) trucks on the road today. They are manufactured with more plys, or layers, than passenger car tires, typically 4-ply or 6-ply (depending on the Load Range, see below.) They are designed to handle more weight so your truck can actually be used as a truck.

Speed Ratings
This gives a measure of how much speed the tire can handle for a given testing period (usually 10 minutes) without becoming damaged.

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Truck Loads of Freight? Learn How to Win in the Trucking Industry

As a trucking company owner, you know that the transportation industry is very profitable. And, it’s safe to say that the industry will grow steadily for the years to come. If only because people are buying more things and someone needs to haul the stuff around. There has never been a better time to own a trucking company.

There are three keys to growing your trucking company successfully.

First, find truck loads of cargo and freight

The key to winning in the trucking game is to find clients with truck loads of freight that need to be hauled. There are a few ways to do this. Many owners rely on the internet and go to freight boards or load boards to try and get loads. This is a good strategy because there are a number of reputable boards that can certainly keep your business humming for a long time. Another advantage of truck boards is that they help you reduce your infamous deadhead trips – trips where you are returning home without hauling anything.

Second, work with reputable clients and freight brokers

Although load boards are great, you also want to work with established freight brokers reputable freight broker will help you get loads so that your trucks are always running. They will also help with the proper paperwork and documentation, and lastly, they will ensure that you get paid.

However, not all freight brokers or clients are created equal. Be sure to check them out before doing business with them. You can do this by asking them for references or by checking their commercial credit.

Lastly, get the right financing

Waiting up to 60 days to get paid for your freight bills can put your trucking business in neutral very quickly. Your best option is to finance your freight bills using factoring. Freight bill factoring provides you with money for your slow paying freight bills, giving you the funds to pay for fuel, drivers and repairs.

Putting it all together

Making it big with a trucking company is not hard – you just have to be smart. Be sure to get the right clients and the proper financing, and watch your business grow.

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Bed Rug Installation

Our friends from Bed Rug show how to cover your bed.

  1. Read all instructions before installing.
  2. The floor and siderugs are shipped unzipped.
  3. Remove floor and siderugs from box.
  4. Zip floor and siderugs together to form the one-piece soft bed liner.
  5. A very aggressive hook and loop fastening system has been designed to hold the bedliner in open bed trucks.
  6. A continuous loop fastener is sewn around the liner. The bulkhead and tailgate have two continuous strips of loop fastener sewn along the top and bottom. The hook fasteners have a self-adhesive backing to stick to the bed of the truck.

    Lay the Bedrug soft bed liner in the bed of the truck to determine the exact location and fit.

  1. Note: Some truck beds are equipped with tie-down hooks, load extenders and other functional equipment. These may be located on the floor, bulkhead or sidewalls. For equipment such as this, the installer must either:
    • Cut a small slit in the appropriate area of the Bedrug allowing the equipment to protrude through the Bedrug into the truck bed. (This will not damage the Bedrug or;
    • Remove the equipment until the installation is complete, then reinstall the equipment on top of the Bedrug.

IMPORTANT: Never cut or put slits through any seams or sewn areas of the Bedrug. This will cause the seam to come completely apart. Refer to illustration for completing steps 8 -14. Roll one side of the Bedrug up exposing the floor area where the strip of hook fastener is to be adhered.


  1. Roll one side of the Bedrug up, exposing the floor area, where the strip of hook fastener is to be adherred.
  2. Using a clean lint-free cloth, clean this area thoroughly using NON-PETROLEUM based solvent. Then with a separate cloth, clean the same area again with alcohol. If the cloths become visually soiled, replace them with clean ones.
  3. Attach hook fasteners to the loop. For siderugs, be sure to place the long hook fasteners at the locator marks which are molded into the foam. Remove the protective liners for the hook fasteners exposing the adhesive. (See Illustration) Lay the Bedrug down, then FIRMLY rub the fastener(s) down VERY AGGRESSIVELY to assure full engagement of the fastener(s) and the adhesive.

    Note: Truck bed surface temperature should be 68F or higher in order for the hook fastener to achieve maximum adhesion. Also, never contaminate the adhesive by touching it with your fingers.

  4. Repeat steps 9 and 10 for the opposite side of the Bedrug.
  5. Repeat steps 9 and 10 on the bulkhead.
  6. Repeat steps 9 and 10 on the siderugs.
  7. Repeat Steps 9 and 10 on the tailgate.

For more information on bed rugs, visit Bed Rug.

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Safety Issues in Mobile Towers

Some projects require you climbing up to a certain height, to do this mobile towers can be used as these are much safer than ladders or many other solutions. A mobile tower is effectively a platform that lifts up to the desired height where you are free to work.

Although a mobile tower might be safer than a ladder that s not suggesting that it s completely risk free. In fact mobile towers are potentially lethal if they are not treated with respect. The good news is that as long as you are sensible and choose the right machine they are very safe.

90%of the accidents that happen on Mobile Towers in Australia are because the person chooses the wrong type, or does not know how to use it properly. No matter which cherry picker hire, or scissor lift Hire Company you choose to use it is important that you choose the right machines.

There are many different types of mobile towers including boom lifts, scissor lifts, and lifts mounted on trucks. These are all designed with specific applications in mind and choosing the wrong one could be quite dangerous. That s why its important to seek advice to make sure that you choose the right mobile tower.

Universal is a well respected mobile tower lift company with over 20 years experience, this means that they are more than qualified to help you choose which type of mobile towers will be suitable for you. They will also be able to assist you with selecting the correct safety equipment to ensure that you do not put your life in danger when using the mobile tower lifts.

There are risks when using a mobile tower; however there are plenty of things that you can do to reduce these risks and make them less of a problem. Talking to universal and finding the right machine for the j ob is the first step. The type of machine will depend on a number of factors including the terrain, road network, obstacles and power lines. This can be difficult for anyone to do, which is why a site survey from universal will help you to decide. They will visit your site for free and inspect it, on the same day you will receive a writ ten quote detailing what you need and exactly how much it will cost.

Safety is the most important consideration for everyone, as long as you spend time thinking about it you should be able to minimise the potential hazards and make the whole process much safer. If you have the right tools for the job then you should find it much easier to get on with your project without putting yourself at risk.

Jesse Hancock has had a lot of experience in the field of mobile communication, having worked in it for close to 12 years. He retired voluntarily to take up amateur writing and today combines his knowledge in the field and his passion for writing to write articles on the internet.

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Top Jeep Accessories: Personalize that Wrangler

It’s a jeep thing; even if you don’t own a jeep, you know of the cult that surrounds the name. From spunky beach-town cruisers to rock crawling monsters, Jeeps are without a doubt the most capable and modifiable vehicles on the planet. If you’re curious about the different paths you can take with your jeep, then this guide is for you.

Let’s say you just picked up a canary yellow 4-door jeep from the local dealer. Heck, you probably got a great deal on it, considering the financial trouble that Chrysler is facing. You got the basic package, avoiding any over-priced dealer add-ons, but there are a couple things you are going to need to make the new Wrangler compliment your lifestyle.

First things first, get a top for it! Most Jeeps come without a roof, so unless you live on a warm tropical island that never sees any rain, you’ll need something to cover it up. There are a few different options and your choice will be driven the local climate. If you live in an area with 4 seasons, from sunshine to snowfall, you’ll want probably want a hard top. Jeep hard tops have better insulation and offer better vehicle security, but can be cumbersome to remove and store. If winters aren’t too harsh or you don’t drive that much in the winter, a soft top can suffice. Jeep soft tops are a better choice for most people as they can be removed by one person, are easily stored and offer fairly good protection from the elements. If you live in a climate that sees rainfall a few days of the year and are not worried about thieves stealing things out of your Jeep, a bikini top is your best choice. Jeep bikini tops share similar form and function to their bathing suit cousins; they offer maximum exposure while providing a little protection to those vital areas you don’t want to get sunburned. They are easy to store and even easier to install; tie one on and you’re ready for a day of fun in the sun.

If you choose to forgo a jeep top, you’ll definitely want to pick up a set of jeep seat covers. The sun can be a cruel mistress and her UV rays can destroy your seats in just a few short years. If you bought your Jeep used and the seats came sans-fabric, you might want to consider replacing them with an aftermarket set of jeep seats, specially designed to keep you and your occupants planted inside the cab. If your jeep came without doors, do yourself a favor and avoid a lawsuit by getting a pair of tubular jeep doors; they look cool, protect you from falling out and let you see any rocks that your tires might be grappling with. Speaking of tires, jeep suspension kits are a must have if you plan to do any amount off-roading. From front and rear diffs to lift kits and fender flares meant to house 35” mudders, the options are near limitless. If you plan to go on some big excursions, make sure to have a proper spare tire mount with an extra can of gas. The last thing you want is to be stranded in the wilderness stuck in a rut somewhere with a flat. If you do get stuck, at least make sure to have some tunes jamming to break the silence while you wait for backup. But let’s face it; Jeep did a half-arse job with their choice of stereo equipment. Those 4” dash speaker just don’t cut it if you drive a vehicle that is an open-air roof 99% of the time. You’re going to need some decent watts if you want to rock out proper. Jeep sound bars are a great way to direct crisp audio to your ears while utilizing the roll bar as a choice mounting location. Toss a sub in the back and you’re ready to walk up that Stairway to Heaven.

If you want to take a closer look at all the popular jeep accessories, take a look at the jeep soft top category on this Jeep parts page.

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What Women Should Know About Their Car Inner Workings

Per the Australian government’s Motor Vehicle Census, as of March 2008 there were 15.3 million motor vehicles registered in the country. In just 5 years, between 2003 and 2008, the number increased by 13.9%. Everyone loves their auto, both men and women, and there are plenty of women driving cars who rely on a professional mechanic to keep it running smoothly.

With a car comes responsibility and one of those responsibilities is making sure the auto is taken care of properly. That requires a lot more than just keeping it filled with petrol or having the oil changed periodically. Women should have a basic understanding of auto terminology and recognize signs of trouble developing.

Auto Repairs are No Joke

There are a lot of jokes that have women and cars as the topic. Actually, the jokes are more about the stereotyping of women as having little knowledge about the mechanical aspect of cars. Chances are a lot of men would be very surprised to learn how many women have made sure they are familiar with the basics of auto mechanics so they can recognize a problem before it gets serious. Preventive maintenance and early repair can often save thousands of dollars at the mechanic’s shop.

Actually it is preventive maintenance and preventive driving behaviour that can minimize the chances of your car breaking down. For example, you should try to avoid taking regular auto trips that require less than 10 minutes of driving. It takes more than ten minutes for an engine to eliminate the water vapour created by the engine heating. Water that is not eliminated will collect in the engine and promote rust and even make its way into the oil where it impedes the ability of the oil to lubricate the engine.

That’s why you will hear an auto owner boast that the car has been driven primarily on the highway for longer periods of time!

Speaking of fluids like water, there is a lot more than oil to change in a car. Women need to make sure the transmission fluid is flushed and new fluid added approximately every 60,000 miles at a minimum. The differential fluid should also be changed at the same time. This will keep the drivetrain working properly and prevent transmission premature wear due to dirty fluid.

It’s a pity how many engines have been ruined because the driver didn’t recognize the symptoms of a developing problem. Your car “talks” to you in a language all its own and you just have to listen to what it’s saying to either prevent a problem or to stop a problem from getting worse. So what kind of language does a car speak?

* A lit engine light may suggest engine management problems
* Steam coming from under the hood indicates a possible coolant fluid leak, faulty waterpump or thermostat.
* A lit oil light indicates the oil pressure has dropped
* Brakes that go “squish” as the pedal goes too far to the floor (hopefully not all the way!) probably means the brake fluid is low
* The tapping and knocking clicking sound from the engine might indicate valves clearance or engine problems or

In other words, the noises you hear and the lights that suddenly are lit are telling you there is a problem that needs immediate attention.

Wow! What Does That Mean?

An overheated engine is a very serious problem that should be checked by a mobile mechanic right away. In fact, if your engine light comes on or there are signs of steam coming from the engine, the best thing to do is pull over and call for help. If you don’t turn the engine off right away and keep driving instead there is a good chance you will destroy the engine. When the engine gets too hot, the cylinder head gasket can fail and in extreme circumstances the block can crack among other things and you may have to replace the engine if that happens.

People with a basic knowledge of engines can often manage to get the car to the nearest repair shop by adding water to a radiator if the overheating is caused by a leaking radiator or hose. But the engine can overheat for a number of other reasons and if you don’t know what you are doing then it’s better to just stop driving and get assistance.

* Faulty electronic signals
* Clogged or leaking radiator
* Low coolant
* Broken, stuck or leaking thermostat
* Cylinder Head problems

Obviously some problems are much easier to fix than others. But the important thing to understand is that when the engine light comes on there is a problem that must be corrected or the engine can be ruined.

Sometimes you get early warning the engine is going to overheat before the dash light comes on. For example, you notice a puddle of fluid under the engine on the garage floor. You should never ignore this kind of sign until you determine exactly what it is and where it is coming from.

Not all puddles indicate a problem. For example, if you just drove the car and had the air conditioner on then a puddle might form under the car from the expulsion of condensation and water. But the puddle will be small and will appear under the air conditioner. If you walk up to your car and say, “Wow! Where is all that water coming from?” then there is a good chance your radiator is leaking.

Two-Way Conversation

Women should also understand the importance of regular maintenance on a vehicle. Not only will it help extend the life of your car, the knowledge will improve communication with a mechanic. For example, if you get your oil changed regularly and know it has not been using oil, then a dishonest mechanic will not be able to convince you to spend money on correcting a non-existent oil problem.

Women also need to learn the basic language of the mechanic. When he walks up to you and says, “Your ABS needs repair”, it’s good to know what he is talking about. There are a lot of acronyms used in the auto repair business and they will show up on your invoices. The terms are used like a second language by mechanics. Here is just a sample.

* ABS – antilock braking system
* ATF – automatic transmission fluid
* ECM – engine control module
* EGR – exhaust gas recirculation
* BCM – body control module
* SRS – safety restraint system
* PCM – Powertrain control module

There are hundreds of acronyms like these in the auto repair business.

It is highly recommended that everyone have a regular mechanic they can trust to speak honestly and intelligently about auto problems. A reliable car repair service can save a car owner literally thousands of dollars. It is the reason why so many busy people are using mobile mechanics who make it convenient to access reliable and ongoing auto repair and maintenance service.

In knowledge is power! Women who understand how a car’s inner workings operate, and the language of the car, have the power to talk to a mechanic in a two-way conversation. When the mechanic says the ABS or the EGR or the PCM needs work, you will be able to say…let’s talk about it.

Mobile Car Care is a fully trained Mobile Mechanics and Auto Electricians servicing company. Our Mobile Mechanic Service Units are fully equipped to perform all car repairs, auto electrical repairs, and car, commercial and 4WD service. For more information, visit Mobile Mechanics.

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Better Save than Sorry – A Bucket Truck Safety Tip

Better Save than Sorry – A Bucket Truck Safety Tip

One of the biggest issues facing linemen and other crewmembers that spend their days working out of a bucket truck is safety. Bucket trucks are generally customized to deal with very specific types of work. On occasion a maintenance company will be forced, by circumstance, to use a particular bucket truck from their fleet for a job that it wasn’t designed for. Sure the job can be done using the truck, but is it worth the risk.

Take for example a lighting maintenance worker that spends most of his time in a bucket truck replacing spent bulbs from light poles in a parking lot, who is now asked to replace a damaged light pole. The problem is, the maintenance company does not have a properly equipped pole truck to handle the job and instead use a jib/wench attached to their bucket truck to take down the old pole and put up the new one.

Without checking the load rating on the truck’s boom and the hydraulics it is impossible to know what the rig can safely handle. Even though, in most cases, the job can be done – the question remains: “Is it safe?” OSHA has issued guidelines relating to the proper use of bucket trucks as well as other variations in this particular class of specialized utility vehicles. The OSHA standards deal with minimum safety requirements and should be adhered to whenever operating a bucket truck or similar vehicles.

Several years ago the American Public Power Association released an eight-part DVD series that provided safety training specifically geared for public power utilities. One of the volumes deals with the safe operation of bucket trucks and covers topics including equipment inspection, precautions to prevent falling and rescue procedures. Several other companies have produced similar safety videos.

It is always a good idea to review the specs for a particular vehicle and the tools and accessories that will be used to perform a specific task. Know the OSHA guidelines and if available, review any safety videos on hand. Bucket trucks are versatile machines that are able to do a variety of tasks. But without knowing the limitations of the equipment it may be difficult to avoid a hazardous situation. When purchasing a new or used bucket truck, it is always recommended to work with a reliable dealer who can review the manual and go over any safety issues before concluding the sale.

As one fellow put it, I know a lot of old linemen, as well as my share of careless linemen, but I can’t recall ever meeting an old careless lineman.

i80equipment is an online New & Used Bucket Trucks store. Offers a wide variety of Bucket trucks, Boom Trucks & Crane Trucks. bucket trucks

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Going Green With Bucket Trucks – Reality Or Wishful Thinking

Going Green With Bucket Trucks – Reality Or Wishful Thinking

Back in 2005 several test programs were initiated which introduced hybrid diesel-electric power trains into the bucket truck industry. One of these feasibility studies hoped to determine, specifically, the viability of switching over to a more environmentally friendly way to power forestry trucks and bucket trucks used by utility companies. At that time the hybrid revolution had just begun with passenger cars and light-trucks. But the question that needed answering was could a hybrid diesel-electric engine generate the horsepower and, in turn, the power necessary to operate a bucket truck on the road as well as at the job.

The hybrid bucket truck evaluated in these tests utilized a conventional internal combustion diesel engine combined with an electric motor powered by batteries. It is true that in simple tests, hybrid engines scored higher marks for fuel efficiency. Estimates done by the Eaton Corporation showed that as little as 10,000 diesel-electric hybrid trucks could reduce fuel usage by 7.2 million gallons per year. But would the hybrid system work under adverse conditions at a variety of job sites. When the tests were concluded, the survey proved that the operation of these hybrid engines created fuel efficiency and in some cases, a significant reduction in noise pollution.

One of the biggest savings associated with these hybrid bucket trucks came after the truck was on the job. With traditional bucket trucks, the engine remains running in order to power the bucket’s hydraulic lift. It is a different story with the hybrid. Instead of relying on the truck’s engine power the lift, the hybrid’s transmission substituted a Power Take-Off feature designed right into the vehicle’s power train. By using this PTO feature, the bucket truck’s engine can be shut off while the bucket is in use. The bucket can be moved at will until the power has been drained to a prescribed point, then the transmission automatically turns the truck’s engine back on to recharge the batteries. And all of this is accomplished without any loss of hydraulics to the lift.

An unexpected bonus came in the added degree of safety that was discovered with overall quieter operations. When the engine was turned off, the work crew was better able to hear commands and action requests.

And although these hybrid bucket trucks test trials were successful, the real test comes in commercialization. It will not be easy to juggle the expense of replacing existing fleet vehicles with these new, fuel-efficient, environmentally beneficial bucket trucks. Government and military concerns may be forced to make the switch through legislative mandates, but private companies will have to wait for production of these hybrids to move into high gear before the prices become justifiable to the private sector.

In the meantime the question remains as to whether is it possible to modify or replace existing power trains to transform traditional diesel engines into full-featured hybrids. Companies like I-80, which specialize in the sale of new and used medium to heavy-duty trucks, put their inventory through extensive reconditioning before making them available for sale. A 2008 government committee study on hybrid technologies for medium to heavy-duty commercial trucks concluded that with certain trucks it was possible for a hybrid drive system to be installed by another entity during an intermediate or final stage of the manufacturing process as a retro-fit. But whether or not retrofitting is applicable to the bucket truck industry has yet to be determined.

i80equipment is an online New & Used Bucket Trucks store. Offers a wide variety of Bucket trucks, Boom Trucks & Crane Trucks. bucket trucks

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