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Car Tips

First and foremost, whenever working on a car use common sense and caution.

Do not jack your car up as demonstrated below.

Keep an auto maintenance book. Write down dates that repairs, or maintenance was done. Write down where the work was done or by whom.

On a piece of tape write the mileage down when the next oil change is due. Attach this to your upper windshield or another convenient place to remind you when it's time to change the oil.

Never wash your car in the sun to prevent streaking.

A dust mop head, worn as a mitten is great for washing your car.

Coca-cola and aluminum foil will clean rust off your car bumper.

Remove old bumper stickers with lighter fluid. Soak stickers for a few minutes then gently remove with a razor blade.

Steel wool pads with soap cleans white sidewalls the best.

Clean splattered bugs off with baking soda and a nylon net.

When white walls are clean use a little vinyl top wax to keep them clean longer.

Clean headlights, chrome and enamel with baking soda.

Drop a business card or file card with your name on, down the window slot in case you ever need to prove ownership.

Prevent rust by keeping the underside of your car clean also. Place a lawn sprinkler under your car and turn on full blast. Move occasionally so it will reach all areas. This is a good way to remove all salt and road grime.

If you chip the paint on your car, clean promptly and apply clear nail polish to area to prevent rust.

Remove road salt from carpet with equal amounts of vinegar and water.

Remove tar from rubber car mats, by dabbing a generous dose of linseed oil on tar. Let it soak for about fifteen minutes and blot with a dampened cloth.

Use newspaper to wipe windows dry after cleaning to avoid streaks.

Make your own washer solvent that won't freeze by combining 1 quart of rubbing alcohol, 1 cup of water and 2 tablespoons liquid detergent. This formula won't freeze down to 35 degrees below 0.

Line your car trunk with a plastic rug protector to protect the carpeting. It will make clean up easier if dirty or greasy objects are placed in the trunk.

Leave one window open a crack to prevent frost from building up on the inside of the window.

If car windows do steam up on the inside, carry a blackboard eraser in your vehicle. This will quickly remove fog.

When tuning up your car, set gap on plugs using the widest gap that the manufacturer recommends, Your car will run better, idle better, and will give you better gas mileage.

Clean hard to reach areas (dash, cup holders) with a dampened sponge tip brush.

Laundry prewash takes tar off car finish.

Peanut butter has been known to remove tar also.

Avoid putting air in your tire if the temperature is below 10 degrees. The valve could stick and let all of the air out.

If wipers are beginning to wear down, extend their life by rubbing briskly with sandpaper.

Clean windshield wipers with a good scrubbing of baking soda and water.

A radio antenna will slide up and down easier, if a coat of wax is applied occasionally. Wax paper will work great. Rub the wax paper up and down the antenna, the wax from the paper will coat the antenna.

If battery terminals are heavily corroded, the quickest and easiest way to clean them is to pour carbonated soft drink over them. It will eat the corrosion away. Soda and water will also do the trick.

Apply vaseline to battery posts for better contact.

Grease one side of a penny and place that side down on the middle of the battery so corrosion will collect on the penny instead of the battery posts.

If you don't have a sealed battery, make sure to check the water level. Water evaporates fast during summer heat.

A broom is the quickest way to clean snow from a car. You can cut the handle down on the broom and store it in the trunk.

In the glove box, keep a few Handy Wipes to remove gas odor from your hands from filling the tank.

Remove auto grease from hands with baking soda and water.

A hubcap can be used as a shovel if your auto gets stuck in the snow, mud, or sand.

Place a bag of kitty litter in your trunk, in case you get stuck in the snow. Sprinkle some under the tires to get traction.

An unpainted garage entry door can swell and warp and be hard to open. Remove door and allow to dry. Paint door and all edges to seal out moisture.

Grease and oil spots in garage are unsightly and also can be tracked into the house. Avoid ruining carpets by keeping garage floor clean.

Auto grease can be cleaned up with ordinary baking soda and warm water.

Make a drip pan to collect oil drips by placing corrugated cardboard in a cookie sheet. Or fill a cookie sheet with kitty litter. Change as needed.

Oil drips on your garage floor can be absorbed with kitty litter or oatmeal.

If your vehicle leaks fluids, leave kitty litter on floor and sweep up when saturated.

To prevent dust from rising when sweeping out a dirty garage, shred newspaper and dampen with hot water. Spread newspaper around floor and then sweep.

Fresh grass clippings can also be used to keep dust down.

If you have an automatic garage door, and you often come home to find it open, try changing the frequency. Your neighbor's garage opener may be set to the same frequency as yours. While on vacation unplug opener to avoid garage door being open.

If you have poor lighting in garage, place reflector tape on objects that might be hit.

Paint a bright color strip or use luminous tape on center of back wall to aim the car down the center of garage.

Use carpet strips, foam rubber, or pieces of rubber tire around support studs or framing that car doors open against.

Paint parking spaces on garage floor for bicycles, lawn mowers and other objects to help children return objects to the right places.

Be very sure how you use flammable liquids on automotive engines. Refuel only in well ventilated areas, preferably outside and do not refuel while the motor is hot. Never warm your car in an attached garage and never with the garage door closed.

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