Car Maintenance And The Theory Test – Part One

Knowing where to find certain features on a vehicle, and how to maintain them, has become part-and-parcel of the driving theory test and practical driving exam. It is therefore essential that you know your stuff.

Being able to know the difference between your car battery and your car bonnet will prove significant when it comes to answering test questions and taking your practical driving exam.

In your theory test you may be asked a question regarding a vehicle’s battery. Would you know what to do if the battery was flat in order to get the car started again?

Before you begin your practical driving exam the instructor will lift the car bonnet and randomly select two features that you will need to identify. Your instructor could ask you how to check the oil level, so knowledge of vehicle maintenance is certainly worth having.

Basic Vehicle Maintenance

Part one of this series covers basic vehicle maintenance. Any number of questions could emerge in your theory test relating to vehicle maintenance, but here’s a list of the most common themes covered in the exam regarding vehicle maintenance:

· Lights

· Brakes

· Steering

· Exhaust systems

· Seat belts

· Demisters

· Wipers Washers

What You Need To Know

· How all lights and indicators function

· How your windscreen wipers and windows operate

· How to monitor exhaust emissions

· Know how to check seats, seatbelts and head restraints

Further to the items above, you also need to familiarise yourself with all the warning displays on your vehicle instrument panel. It’s not uncommon to encounter questions on the theory test related to a vehicle’s dashboard panel.

When starting a car, if there is a problem with the vehicle, your instrument panel will indicate the source of the problem. It could be a low oil level for example, so as part of your theory test and practical driving exam you would need to know how to add oil to a vehicle.

Tyres are also another common theme when it comes to vehicle maintenance. Knowing your tyre pressures and being able to identify when a tyre is so worn that it needs changing, could be the difference in passing your theory test and practical driving exam.

For instance, do you know what the legal tread limit is for a tyre used on a car being driven on the road? Well, now is the time to find out…

You will also need to know what impact damaged tyres could have on the rest of a vehicle. For example, under-inflated or over-inflated tyres will affect steering performance and braking capabilities.

That concludes part one of this series… Watch this space for part two!!!

Buying a Used Car Part Wisely!

Each time you want to buy a used car part, insist on a great deal. Don’t think you will count on luck though – no way. There are a few things you need to do for making sure you don’t end up with a bitter deal.

Spend a little time now to save you serious money in the future. Make sure to check on Consumer Reports on the safest car parts out there. Appearance is one thing, but safety takes the priority.

Use a credible car yard shop and find out if you can bring the car for on-site fitting. Ask what cars they normally repair most frequently. Get details about the scope of inspection and, how long it takes, including the price. Have this information written as a precaution.

After car part inspection, get a written report with all costs involved for repairs. Also the vehicle’s make, model and VIN must be mentioned in the report. Read through every single small print and where in doubt seek for clarification. Your final offer should be based on the estimates if you ever decide to bargain for the car.

Why you should not buy used part from an individual?

Individuals or private sellers are not covered by the Used Car Rule. They also do not have to use the Buyers Guide. But, you can rely on the Guide’s list of an auto’s major systems to do your shopping. Do not be enticed by the outside look of the used car part, instead depend on the inspection by an approved mechanic.

A private sale is likely to be on an as is basis, the only exception is when your purchase agreement with the seller states otherwise. If a written contract exists, the seller has to live up to their full responsibility. Consider the manufacturer’s warranty or any other purchase contracts. The issue is whether these warranty and service contracts are transferable or not. Prior to the car part purchase, enquire if it’s still under warranty or service contract.

How to Sell Your Car Part 2: How to Find Buyers

Today, the preparations are over and you are ready to locate some buyers.

Notice that I said you are ready to "locate buyers" instead of "advertise your car." This is an important and intentional distinction. There is a big difference between putting a for sale sign in the window and being proactive about selling your vehicle.

"For Sale" signs won't sell your car. You have to sell your car. To do that, you have to locate a buyer.

The first step in locating buyers is to make yourself easy to find .

Put your car everywhere . eBay, Craigslist, Cars.com, AutoTrader, Twitter, Facebook, your blog, your church bulletin board, your bulletin board at work, the bulletin board at the gym, and on and on.

Many of the listing sights, such as Cars.com, will allow you to print up a really attractive flyer for your listing. It should be in color, have pictures, and have all necessary information including the price you decided on in my previous article on preparing sell your car.

Make sure all of your listings are consistent and put as many pictures up as the site will permit. Make sure you take lots of clear pictures and be prepared to e-mail more as necessary.

The next step in locating buyers is talking to people.

I was shocked that after only a couple of months with a Facebook account, I had over 200 "friends." Do I really know 200 people? I guess so. You probably do to. Make it your goal that every one of those people will know that you have a car for sale. Every. One.

Even though you put flyers everywhere, remember that flyers aren't responsible for selling your car either. Putting up flyers isn't the end goal, selling the car is. So be proactive.

Send out an e-mail blast to your friends with a few moderately sized photos. Talk to everyone at work. Talk to everyone at the gym. Talk to everyone at the church. Don't be shy.

Ask them, "Did you see my flyer on the bulletin board? I'm selling my 2002 Wrangler, if you know anyone." That's it! How much time did that take? Two seconds? No pressure. No sales tactics. And it will be worth while when you hear, "You know, my cousin is looking for one of those. I'll take him a flyer."

The final step in locating buyers is following up.

If someone e-mails you, e-mail them back. If someone calls you, call them back. If someone is taking a flyer to their cousin, ask how that went and see if you can get their e-mail to send some more photos.

You don't have to be obnoxious or annoying, but you also don't have to wait for someone to beg you for your car before you actually try to sell it.

If you follow these three steps, you shouldn't have any trouble locating buyers for your well priced, clean, and inspected vehicle.

Next step, what to do once you have a buyer.