1. Dress for winter – You never know when that sudden craving for chocolate might strike. The nearest convenience store may only be right around the corner, but accidents can happen at any time and in any place. Insurance companies report that 52% of reported accidents occur within 5 miles from home and 77% within 15 miles. When you head out, no matter how far you are going, dress for winter. You don’t want to get stuck for hours in the snow in shorts and a t-shirt.
2. Pack your car with essentials – Take some time and put together an emergency kit for your car in case you have an accident. Some essentials to include are bottled water, snacks such as protein bars, blankets, roadside flares, flashlights, gloves or hand warmers and fix-a-flat. The small effort of gathering these items and placing them in your car is worth the peace of mind they provide. Got a new driver in the house? Why not pack them a kit for their car?
3. List contact information – Create a card with the names and phone numbers of those you would like contacted should you be in an auto accident and unable to communicate. Keep this list in your wallet and the glove box in case either is not reachable for rescue personnel. It is a good idea to also put it in your phone under ICE (In case of Emergency)
4. Put your cell phone in your pocket – When heading out on icy winter roads, it’s a good idea to place your cell phone in your pocket. If you slide and crash or even flip your car, that cell phone may not be reachable if in your purse or thrown from the seat. If it is tucked away safely in your pocket, you will have a better chance of being able to use it to call for help.These four simple steps can help you be prepared when driving in the winter. Your passengers will thank you if you have supplies to make things more comfortable should you get stuck for any length of time. Some of these measures could even save your life. Drive safe in winter weather and if unfortunately, you have a winter auto accident, be prepared with an auto body repair shop that will get your car back in shape. Barbosa's Kustom Kolor will handle all the details of your auto body repair, work with your insurance company and get your car looking brand new once again. This article was originally posted in January 2017 and has been updated.
Prep your Car for VacationInspect your car for any issues before you hit the road, traveling for hundreds of miles. Check your tires for tread depth, air pressure and that they are secure. Have your brakes checked and serviced, especially if they have been squeaky. Test all your lights, headlights, brake lights, hazards, and blinkers. If your windshield wiper blades are old or not performing well, replace them. Check all your engine fluids from the windshield washer to power steering. Many garage or oil change service stations can complete these maintenance details for you.
Pack the Right Way for VacationPacking your car for vacation is essential for safety reasons. Try to evenly distribute the weight of your items in your vehicle so it can smoothly travel on the road. In addition, make sure to have a clear line of sight out the back and sides of the car. If you are using a roof rack, make sure your items are completely secure and not too high for passing under bridges. Investing in a storage unit that bolts to your roof rack is a good idea. If you are bringing bikes or outdoor equipment, follow all rack use instructions and guidelines.
Prepare the Kids for a Long DriveDid you know that when driving that children can be 12 times more distracting than your cell phone? This means that keeping them comfortable and occupied is essential. Bring their favorite snacks and drinks. Let them travel with a comfy blanket and pillow. Charge up the electronics and download some movies to keep them busy. Headphones are important to keep the noise level down. Giving each child their own space or zone where they can comfortably stretch out and not annoy one another is good for everyone in the car. Also, if you are traveling with a pet, make sure they have a comfy spot all their own.
Stay Alert when TravelingDriver fatigue is blamed for 100,000 police-reported crashes per year. If you are driving, be sure to start off well-rested. Arm yourself with what you need to stay focused. Coffee, soda, snacks or music can help. Taking breaks along the way can help reduce fatigue and let the kids use the bathroom. Also, be aware that using cruise control can cause you to lose focus. Know your limits and don’t be ashamed to admit them. You and your family, of course, want to arrive safely at your vacation destination. Take the time to prep your car, pack properly and remain alert. Getting there fast is not more important than getting there safely. Vacation travel can be stressful. Try to sit back and enjoy the ride. Just imagine the sand between your toes and the waves crashing on the beach. You’ll get there soon enough.
Emergency Kit for your CarIt never fails, your car will break down at the worst time in the most desolate area. Or maybe your tires are stuck in the snow or blown by a nail in the roadway. No matter the reason you are stuck a few emergency kit items for your car can keep you safe and maybe even allow you to drive home or to a repair shop.
Emergency Tire Inflator: These cans are available at car supply stores and are a great way to refill and temporarily patch a flat. They don’t always do the job, depending on the size of the hole or tear, but in many cases, they will work well enough to get you home. All cars should also be equipped with a spare tire and jack.
Jumper Cables: You may find you use these more often to rescue others, but having a set is important for the one day that your car battery decides to die. A quick jump can get your car mobile again.
Flares or reflective hazard triangles: An accident or stalled vehicle can often happen at night or in a dangerous congested area. Having flares or hazard triangles will alert other drivers to your location, increasing your visibility and helping to avoid additional wrecks.
Kitty Litter: Sand or kitty litter is good to have if you live where it snows. Cars stuck in the snow with spinning wheels can often gain traction with a sprinkling of either.
Flashlight: Always have a flashlight in case its dark and your car loses power. Packing extra batteries can ensure it will always work.
Cell Phone Charger: Invest in a block cell phone charger just in case you have an issue, and your cell phone battery is low. Calling for help and relaying your location is going to be the easiest and fastest way to get back on the road and to safety.
Emergency Kit items for PassengersKeeping you and the people in your car safe is of utmost importance when your car breaks down. Adding these items to your emergency kit can help.
Blankets: Always have extra blankest to protect against below freezing temps. Remember, your car’s power may not work, or eventually, you may run out of gas, which means no heat.
Water & Snacks: Essential to survival, pack some water and high protein snacks that don’t perish quickly like pre-packaged granola or protein bars. Make sure they can handle the heat of your trunk (i.e., no chocolate).
First Aid Supplies: A well-stocked kit can be handy for so many emergency situations.
Always be PreparedTake the time to protect your loved ones by putting together roadside emergency kits for each of their cars. You never know when they might need them. Check them every year and replace perishable items like waters and snacks. Periodically check the cell phone charger to make sure it works and is fully charged. An ounce of prevention goes a long way. Have peace of mind that you’ve done all you can to help your family be prepared.
Wind Damage to a Car Door Hinge
Other Wind Damage ProblemsWhen the wind picks up so does the potential for damage to your car caused by flying or rolling objects. For example, one of the most common causes of damage to cars is shopping carts banging up against them, denting side or back panels while scraping off paint. When it’s a particularly windy day, shopping carts careening through parking lots can be real trouble. Nothing is worse than coming out of a store to find your car damaged.
Auto Body Repair for Wind DamageNever fear the weather or unexpected wind damage to your car when you are a customer of Barbosa’s Kustom Kolor in Parkville, MO. They have years of experience in all types of auto body repair situations, including door joint repair and scratch and dent removal. They’ve seen it all and are ready to get your car back in pristine shape. End your frustrations by putting their phone number, (816) 741-6348 in your cell phone contacts in case you ever need auto body repair. If you’re in an auto accident and your car needs to be towed, ask the tow truck driver to drop it off at Barbosa’s. They will give you an honest estimate, facilitate a rental car if necessary and work with your insurance company. They will get you back on the road in no time. No matter what the cause is, wind damage, hail damage or an auto accident, Barbosa’s Kustom Kolor is your one-stop shop for auto body repairs.
Under the Hood Winter Car CareCheck your Belts: Engine belts are made of rubber that can be affected by cold temperatures over time. If a belt is nearing the end of its lifespan, cold weather can help push it over the edge. Frigid temps make the rubber more prone to failure by reducing flexibility and making it more brittle. A belt that already has wear and tear can snap more easily during winter. Have your mechanic check your belts and hoses for soft spots, tears or bulges and replace them before they break and you get stuck on the side of the road. Upgrade your Engine Oil: Consider switching from conventional oil to full-synthetic. Synthetic oil is more expensive, but it can help make cold-weather engine starts easier on your car. This oil flows freer at lower temps, providing your engine with instant lubrication throughout and alleviating the need for long warm-ups on colder days. Test your Antifreeze: Antifreeze flows through your engine in the coolant system, keeping it from overheating. During cold months, engine cooling is still needed. Antifreeze keeps this system from freezing and seizing up. Over time antifreeze can lose its “charge” affecting its ability to work at a lower temperatures. Have your antifreeze tested at your local mechanic’s bay to ensure it will work when you need it most.
Drive Safely in the WinterShorter days mean less sunlight. Checking that your car lights are in working order is a great way to make sure you are visible at night. Even if your headlights work, consider upgrading them if they are very old. New headlights are designed to provide better visibility by shining farther and wider. Checking that all your wiper blades are in working order is also important. Upgrade old blades and replace them if they are older than six months or simply not doing their job. Another great tip is to fill your windshield washer reservoir with a de-icing washer fluid to help melt precipitation and repel dirt and salt from the roadways. If you find yourself in a winter auto accident and in need of auto body repairs, Barbosa’s Kustom Kolor in Parkville, MO is ready to help. They are a local, family-owned business that does right by their customers. Call (816) 741-6348 or request an estimate online to get back on the road quickly with quality repairs. And before you know it, spring will be there!
What’s the Process of Scratch Repair?Determining the size, location, and depth of a car scratch is the first step necessary for figuring out how it should be repaired. Small scratches that are on the surface can often be buffed out and polished. Sometimes this process can remove a significant portion of the clear coat which will have to be reapplied. Deeper nicks require additional scratch repair steps. Sanding down the scratch is first, then priming and blocking (making it straight) are next. Sealing to avoid rust, then painting and polishing are the final steps. If a scratch has occurred in a problematic location or also has dented your car, additional steps are needed. DIY car scratch repair is not recommended. There are many kits on the market, but they don’t really get the job done right. Often the scratch ends up looking worse and not matching the original car color. The repairs won’t last long, and dent removal is even more difficult. There are some things that are better left to the professionals. high-quality PPG paints that can color match any make and model car. And when your car is finished, they can even install protective door guards to keep scratches from happening again. You can be proud to drive your car. Your “friends” might insist you always drive. Call (816) 741-6348 today for an estimate appointment or contact Barbosa’s Kustom Kolor online. You won’t find a more honest or experienced auto repair shop in the Kansas City area. Get your car back in shape and enjoy the ride once again.
How to Avoid and Handle a Deer and Car CollisionNot only are deer busy this time of year, so are humans. Rushing around preparing for the holidays can cause many to be distracted. When driving during peak deer activity season, the best defense is to always remain alert. Drive extra cautiously through posted deer crossing zones or down back roads that travel through farmland or forests. Be sure to use the vehicle's high-beams when possible. They can illuminate the deer’s eyes or alert you to one near the roadway. Many times, those few extra moments of spotting a deer can help avoid a collision. Keep in mind that deer tend to travel in herds. When you see one, there most likely are more. They usually walk in single file lines. A near miss with one deer is a sure sign to slow down; there may be more. And always wear seatbelts. If a deer and car collision occur, seatbelts just might save a life. According to the Insurance Information Institute, 60% of deaths caused by cars hitting animals were from people not wearing their seatbelts. Should you find yourself in a deer and car collision situation it’s best to remain as calm as possible. Do your best to stay in your lane, even if that means hitting a deer. Many times the instinct is to swerve, but then you may move into the path of another vehicle or lose control of yours. Hold on tight to the steering wheel and apply the brake firmly. Newer cars are equipped with anti-lock brakes and airbags to help keep people safe.
Are you covered in a Deer and Car Collision?The aftermath of a deer and car collision can be a headache. The good news is most likely your auto insurance company will cover your auto repair expenses minus your deductible. If you have comprehensive coverage, damaged caused by hitting an animal is typically covered. Keep in mind though; should you swerve to miss a deer and hit a tree or another vehicle, collision coverage would be needed to cover those expenses. In each case, the car owner must pay their deductible first. Usually, comprehensive coverage rates do not increase when an animal has damaged a car.
How to get back on the roadThe Insurance Information Institute estimates the average cost of deer and car collision insurance claims to be over $4000 (2015). These large animals can undoubtedly cause a lot of damage. The good news is that many vehicles can be repaired and these repairs are often covered by insurance. Barbosa’s Kustom Kolor located in Parkville, MO is an Auto Body Repair Shop that has repaired many deer caused car crashes. They have the experience and knowledge to fix your vehicle the right way and paint the repairs to match. They’ll help work with the insurance company to make sure you receive the correct compensation payment. You won’t find a more dedicated and honest company ready to get you back on the road. So if you find yourself with a busted up vehicle due to a collision with a deer, call (816) 741-6348 or contact Barbosa’s Kustom Kolor online today.
Save Gas with your Driving StyleBeing behind schedule or getting stuck in traffic can frustrate and stress drivers out. Stress can lead to aggressive driving which can use up more gas than usual driving conditions. Quickstarts from a traffic light or stop sign and speeding causes worse fuel economy in your vehicle. When tempted to jump off the line when starting from a stop, image an egg between your foot and the accelerator pedal. Slow and gentle starts save wasted gas. In addition, speeds above 55 mph are less fuel-efficient. 10-15% improvement in fuel economy can be gained from reducing your speed from 65 to 55 mph. And idling is a gas zapper. If possible, turn your engine off to save gas when waiting in a line or in traffic for long periods of time.
How your Car can Save GasThere are several easy steps you can take to save gas money when it comes to your car.
Highway Tires: Reduce resistance when you choose highway type tires instead of enhanced traction or off-roading tires.
Tire Pressure: Monthly checks of your vehicle's tire pressure can help save gas. Underinflated tires increase resistance, decreasing fuel mileage. Check the driver’s door frame for the proper tire pressure and keep that maintained.
Maintenance: Keep your car running at maximum efficiency with regular maintenance. Oil changes and tune-ups will keep your vehicle at peak performance and use the least amount of gas to run.
Check the Trunk: Extra unnecessary weight in your car can significantly reduce fuel mileage. Unload heavy items as soon as possible for maximum gas savings.These easy tips can help your wallet at the gas pumps and keep your car in great shape. Whether you’re heading out on a road trip or across town, saving money on gas is a great feeling. Knowing that Barbosa's Kustom Kolor in Parkville is ready to repair your car should you have a fender bender is an even better feeling.
Hydroplaning on Wet RoadsThe condition of your tires and the amount of standing water on a road can lead to hydroplaning. This is a phenomenon where water builds up under the tires of your car faster than it is pushed away. The vehicle is essentially riding on top of the water with no traction to turn or stop. Your car is now at the mercy of momentum and the flow of the water. Highways in the US are built to arch slightly, higher in the middle and lower at the edges. Many roads, however, are not built to this standard. And even roads that are can experience standing water when significant amounts of rain fall quickly. The state of your tires is a huge factor when it comes to hydroplaning. Lower tread, worn-out tires cannot funnel water outward quickly enough. Driving faster increases the risk as well. When stuck in a big downpour, reduce your speed. And beforehand, check your tires. Is the tread low? Have they not been replaced or rotated in years? Purchasing new tires may be necessary.
Other Wet Road TipsKeep you and your passengers safe when wet roads lie ahead.
*Slow Down – Maintain an increased distance behind cars to avoid accidents and reduce your speed. Even small amounts of rain can cause roads to be oily and slippery.
*Avoid Standing Water – Judging the depth of puddles is nearly impossible. Don’t drive through them.
*Use Wipers - Make sure your wiper blades are always in good condition, replacing them once a year.
*Turn on Headlights – Many modern cars do this automatically when wipers are engaged or it gets dark outside. If yours doesn’t, be sure to turn them on manually.
*Brake Less – Sudden braking can lead to hydroplaning or a collision. If possible take your foot off the gas to slow down and brake slowly.
*Wear Sunglasses – During a rainstorm sunglasses can often help you see more clearly.
*Pull Over – Should rain become too heavy for wipers to keep up with and visibility is bad, pull over. Be sure to turn off your lights so others don’t follow behind you.Staying safe on the roads is essential. Even if your ride takes longer due to wet roads, arriving safely is the ultimate goal. Always be alert and extra vigilant when driving in the rain. Should you experience an unfortunate accident and need auto body repairs, Barbosa’s Kustom Kolor in Parkville, MO is ready to put the pieces back together for you. They’ll work with your insurance company and even help secure a rental car. Stay safe out there especially on wet roads!
key back to school driving tips
*School buses: When traveling behind a school bus it is wise to allow a greater following distance since the bus will most likely be stopping often. On an undivided road, never pass a bus from behind while it is loading or unloading children. Bus road rules for different types of roads situations vary depending on your state. Always practice patience and caution.
*Young pedestrians: Surprisingly bus-related child deaths are mostly caused while children are walking to or from a bus. Always travel slowly through school zones and heed the directions of the school patrol officer and the crossing guard. Be alert around playgrounds for children darting across the street.
*School zones: When picking up or dropping children off at their schools, again, patience is necessary. All drivers are in a hurry and frustrations can flare quickly. Follow the individual school guidelines for traffic patterns, wait your turn and only drop off in safe, designated areas. Carpooling is a great way to reduce the number of cars in line.
New teen drivers are on the roads
Young high schoolers are now on the roads daily. They lack experience and maybe sometimes the best judgment. Often their young minds don’t consider risky behaviors as truly deadly. A big concern with young drivers is cell phone use. They may have texted or talked on the phone while driving without incident in the past. When “at-risk” behaviors continue without negative outcomes, they often convince themselves it is safe. Parents, teachers, coaches and community leaders need to continually remind teens of the risks. Parents can require young adults to use cell phone apps that reduce risky behaviors. TextArrest is a free app that disables texting and email when it senses the phone is traveling over 5 miles per hour. Drive safely Pro is a paid app that reads aloud text and emails and automatically responds without having to touch a button. There are many more options when it comes to cell phone apps that can help your teen. Ask your friends and neighbors and do a little research to find the right fit.
Keep Back to School Driving Safe
If we can all practice patience in the mornings and evenings, we can all get where we need to go. Everyone is in a hurry and has much to accomplish. Remembering that our young ones are on those buses, are crossing the streets and are even behind the wheel can help keep things in perspective. Slow down and stay alert this school year and who knows, you just might save a life.