Thursday, May 21, 2009

Cabin Air Filters

Since the mid 1980’s, many automobile manufacturers have begun including cabin air filters, also known as passenger compartment filters, interior ventilation filters or dust filters in new vehicle designs. Cabin air filters work by filtering the outside air coming into your vehicle. These filters were initially designed to remove solid contaminants such as soot or dust from the air circulating inside your vehicle. Cabin air filters work to remove nearly 100 percent of air-borne particles like pollen, road dust, soot and other microscopic particles that decrease the quality of the air being emitted from your vehicle’s air vents.

Cabin Air Filters are typically located under your vehicle’s dashboard or attached to the glove box. Others may be located in the engine compartment. Please consult your vehicle owner’s manual to find out if your vehicle has a cabin air filter and its location.

The general guideline for replacing cabin air filters is every 12,000 to 15,000 miles, or at least once a year. In addition to an unpleasant odor, filters not changed after 20,000 miles can result in decreased heating and air conditioning performance caused by restricted airflow through the cabin air filter. Cabin air filters are a great benefit to anyone, especially those with allergy-related problems, that spends a lot of time in their vehicle.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Why Should I Repair or Replace a Cracked Windshield?

Many of us have had the following scenario happen. We are driving down the road, when suddenly a rock or other piece of debris hits our windshield. Within hours or days, a crack starts to creep across our field of vision to remind us of our unfortunate encounter. Most of us simply call our insurance company and have our windshield replaced. Others, for a variety of reasons, decide to not to concern themselves with the damage. Those in the latter group could be making a deadly mistake.

Most people may not realize that in addition to protecting us from wind, noise and debris while we drive, our vehicle’s windshield also is a vital part of its safety restraint system (SRS). Your windshield works in conjunction with your vehicle’s airbags and seat belts to help protect you if you’re in an accident. The windshield serves to keep occupants inside the vehicle as well as to help support the roof to prevent it from collapsing should the vehicle roll over. In some vehicles, the windshield helps support the passenger side airbag during deployment. A damaged windshield may not be able to function as it is designed to in the event of an accident.

But what if your windshield is simply scratched, pitted or dinged, do you need to be worried about seemingly minor damage? Even this relatively minor damage can have major consequences if it affects your vision and leads to an accident. The best advice is to have a technician certified by the National Glass Association determine if your windshield can be repaired or if it needs to be replaced. A repair will preserve the factory seal between the windshield and vehicle. If your vehicle’s windshield must be replaced, be sure to use a glass shop that endorses the Auto Glass Replacement Safety Standard (AGRSS) and trains their technicians to that standard.

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