(BPT) - For millions of Americans, the turn of seasons means it's time to tackle the big move. Whether you've purchased a new home or are changing apartments, moving is a lot of work - both physically and mentally. By planning ahead, packing smart and moving safely, you can avoid some of the most notorious moving day mistakes.
"AAA shares a longstanding commitment to driver safety with Penske, which is especially important during the spring and summer moving season," says Scott Denman, AAA, vice president, Financial Services and Discounts & Rewards.
To streamline your moving day, avoid these top mistakes and feel great about entering your new home sweet home:
Mistake: Renting the wrong size truck
In general, allow 150 cubic feet of truck space for each fully furnished room. For example, a 12-foot truck offers 450 cubic feet while a 26-foot truck offers 1,400 cubic feet for your items.
Mistake: Packing items too early or too late
Begin with out-of-season and non-essential items several weeks prior to move day. Donate or sell anything you won't use at your new home. Pack essentials like personal necessities and basic cookware the day before or morning of moving day.
Mistake: Damaging breakable items
Poor packing can cause items to break during the move. Plan ahead and have plenty of paper and bubble wrap on hand. Towels, socks and other soft materials are great for packing breakables as well.
Mistake: Reserving a rental truck too late
Wait too long and you might not get the truck you need. Reserve a truck at least two weeks prior to the move. Access PenskeTruckRental.com from your smartphone and in a few clicks you'll reserve the perfect moving truck for your moving day, saving you time and headaches.
Mistake: Poorly labeled boxes
Where did you put those tools you now so desperately need? Always remember to label boxes clearly. Note the boxes' contents and what room it belongs in.
Mistake: Not having enough hands on deck
Now is the time to cash in some favors and elicit friends and family to help on moving day. This allows you to use your truck rental time efficiently while ensuring you're not too sore from doing it all yourself.
Mistake: Not utilizing truck space efficiently
Put the biggest items in the truck first followed by heavy boxes. Then stack with lighter boxes and other items to fill in the remaining space.
Mistake: Lifting incorrectly
When loading and unloading, be sure to bend your knees and lift with your legs, not your back. Work diligently, but be sure to take breaks and stay hydrated.
Mistake: Driving at peak times
Leave early in the morning. You'll run into less traffic and you'll leave yourself extra time to unload at your destination. Take turns driving and take breaks once every two to three hours.
Mistake: Unsafe driving practices
Driving a big truck is new for many people. Penske professionals will get you familiarized with your vehicle, verify the best driving directions to your new home, check the upcoming weather and give you any necessary driving advice.
(BPT) - If your vehicle is more to you than just a tool that gets you to and from work, then you’re always looking for new ways to maximize your drive time. As seasons change, your pursuits do as well which requires considerations about road conditions and weather when choosing the best equipment to get you where you want to go, without fail.
So how do you make sure you can continue to chase the pursuits you love deep into the cold weather months? It starts with new tires, and if you’re in the market for some additional seasonal grip, you’re looking at all-season and all-terrain options. Now which one is right for you?
To help you in your decision making, BFGoodrich(R) Tire experts Marcus Wilson and Dan Newsome offer an insider’s look at the differences between all-season and all-terrain tires. Use their advice to determine which one matches your pursuits to keep you enjoying your vehicle all season long.
All-season tires: what you need know
“Often times, winter causes us to scale back what we do and we lose the thrill of driving,” says Wilson, BFGoodrich Tires Ultra-High Performance marketing manager. “But all-season tires mean you don’t have to sacrifice your road time and they allow you to extend your driving activities later into the year.”
Wilson says consumers can think of all-season tires as a “jack of all trades” option and that an all-season tire will give you more performance without having to switch to a specialty tire. For sporty coupe and sedan vehicles, the new g-Force(TM) COMP-2(TM) A/S tire gives drivers the ability to accelerate faster, brake shorter and maintain control during any season. It’s great for wet, dry or light snow-covered roads. It also maintains grip in colder ambient temperatures (around 44 degrees Fahrenheit), even when no moisture is present on the road surface. Testing shows the tire stops up to 15 feet shorter on wet roads and 5 feet shorter on dry roads.
“Wherever there’s a paved road, you can typically take an all-season ultra-high performance tire, like the new g-Force(TM) COMP-2(TM) A/S tire, and you enjoy it,” Wilson says.
All-terrain tires: taking your knowledge off-road
If your seasonal pursuits will take you off traditional paved roads, you’ll want a tough all-terrain tire according to Newsome, BFGoodrich Tires country marketing manager for Light Truck Tires. “For any outdoor activities that ignite your spirit of adventure, finding a good all-terrain tire is where your journey begins,” he says.
Newsome adds that all-terrain tires are perfect for vehicles that have more horsepower and torque, and need the perfect tire for “adventure drives.” He says when BFGoodrich started developing the second generation of its race-proven and most advanced light truck tire ever, the new All-Terrain T/A(R) KO2 tire, they started by asking their customers what they wanted from an all-terrain tire. “It came down to the three T’s,” Newsome says. “Toughness, tread life and traction.” With this in mind, the new KO2 features a rugged durable tire that lasts twice as long on gravel roads and 15 percent longer on asphalt, according to off-road test results. The tire also offers 10 percent greater traction in mud and 19 percent greater traction in snow, as well as reinforced sidewalls to help prevent a blowout.
The KO2 also carries the RMA Severe Snow Rating (3 Peak Mountain Snowflake symbol) which indicates that it's an excellent choice for owners of pickups and other rugged vehicles to use on-road as well as off-road in winter conditions.
“An all-terrain tire should give you those all-season capabilities,” says Newsome, “and it should also be there for you when it’s time to go off-road.”
Finding the right tires for you
When trying to determine which tires are best for you, keep this handy checklist in mind.
You’ll want all-season tires if:
* You are driving in an environment where road conditions change frequently all year due to inclement weather
* You want to enjoy driving confidence in rain, light snow and cold, in addition to dry pavement
* You pursue driving passions where braking, accelerating and maintaining control matter
You’ll want all-terrain tires if:
* Your adventures take you on unpaved roads
* The fall and winter mean hiking, camping, fishing or generally turning off paved roads
* Traction and toughness are key to helping you continue your adventure
Start your search for the perfect tires
If you loathe the idea of abandoning your hobbies because the weather has changed, replacing your tires can help. Whether you need all-season or all-terrain tires depends on your pursuits, the amount of traction, toughness and performance you need, how you plan to use your vehicle and where you plan to go. Whichever you choose, your new tires will let you enjoy the changing weather in the way that works best for you and make the most of this season in your favorite machine.
(BPT) - What do you love most about winter? Is it the skiing and the sledding, the trips to the winter carnivals or seasonal get-togethers? There’s plenty to love about winter — and often that means driving out to enjoy those things.
With sleet, snow and ice, winter weather can make your driving experience worrisome this time of year. But you don’t have to sacrifice your favorite winter activities just because of winter road conditions. Follow the five winter driving tips below and you’ll be able to focus on the moments that make this season great.
* Slow down. Sometimes the simplest tips are also the most effective. When you’re out on the road, reducing your speed by 50 percent during snowy weather is advised, just be sure you don’t slow down too much. Your car must maintain its momentum to avoid getting stuck in the snow.
* Have the right vehicle for the job. Nothing is worse than feeing unsafe in your car when bad weather hits. That’s why it is important to choose the right vehicle: one that is ready to take on wet and slick driving when winter weather strikes. The stylish and roomy Subaru Legacy comes standard with all-wheel drive, a feature that helps provide peace of mind when faced with difficult road conditions. The Legacy also comes available with Subaru EyeSight technology, an accident avoidance system that includes pre-collision braking, lane departure and sway warnings and rear cross traffic alert; all designed to provide an extra set of eyes and help keep you safe no matter where your winter travels take you.
* Keep in touch. When traveling on winter roads, particularly over long distances, it’s good to alert others to your trip plans. Call loved ones and let them know where you are going, when you will leave and when you plan to arrive. This keeps those waiting for you in the know in case of an emergency so they can help if needed. And don’t forget to provide periodic updates during your trip so loved ones can rest easy.
* Know how to handle a skid. Despite taking proper precautions, you still may find yourself sliding on an icy road. When you start to feel your vehicle enter a skid, don’t panic and just remember a few key techniques. First, take your foot off the gas – this will help to slow down and makes it easier to control the vehicle. In addition to laying off the gas, fight the urge to slam on the brakes but tap the brake pedal lightly and frequently. This helps to regain some traction and also slow the car down. Last, but certainly not least, lightly turn the wheel in the direction of the swerve to help guide the car toward that direction, this will prevent the car from entering a spin. As a final tip, look in the direction you want to go, rather than fixating on what you are trying to avoid; it really does help.
* Pack a winter weather kit. Sometimes, despite all your preparation, winter weather can still leave you stranded. If this should happen to you, it’s good to be prepared. Pack a winter weather kit and keep it in the back of your car for such emergencies. Your kit should include a backup phone battery and charger, blankets, water, protein bars, a de-icer, a flashlight, a tow rope, radio and cat litter — in case your tires need a little extra traction. Hopefully you’ll never have to use any of these items, but should you get stuck, you’ll be happy you planned ahead.
Braving through tough winter weather doesn’t have to stop you from enjoying your favorite seasonal activities with friends and family. Utilizing proper safety habits, packing the right supplies and choosing the right vehicle will help ensure you reach your destination safely to create winter memories that last a lifetime. To learn more about how the Subaru Legacy can keep you safe on the road this winter, visit Subaru.com.
(BPT) - Are you the type of driver who pushes the accelerator a little harder on the curves of a back-country road? Are you a person who smiles as they approach a new terrain or road condition you’ve never conquered before? If so, you’re a performance seeker. A person who is constantly pushing themselves to prove that they are driver enough.
The performance driver never wants to lose the feeling of adrenaline as they push their vehicle to the max, but as the seasons change, so do the road conditions and the challenges drivers face. We sat down with X-Games athlete, professional race car driver, professional stunt car driver and BFGoodrich(R) Tires ambassador, Andrew Comrie-Picard, or ACP, to better understand the challenges associated with wet weather driving, how modern tires can help prevent the loss of traction and skidding, and how they make the overall driving experience more fun – regardless of the season.
Keeping contact with the road
The biggest danger with wet weather driving is how unexpected the road conditions and hazards can be. As the temperatures rise and seasonal showers pick up, standing water in puddles, still-cool spring temperatures, and the potential for showers to lift oil to the surface of the road can all compromise traction and lead to a skid or a possible accident.
"Having the right tires is the number one thing you can do to prevent hydroplaning without losing performance often drowned out during the rainy season," says Andrew Comrie-Picard (ACP). "The proper tread depth and tire design can make all the difference in your vehicle’s ability to shed water, while increasing control on the road."
Until recently, a tire with exceptional wet and dry traction in both high and low ambient temperatures was a dream of tire engineers and drivers alike. But the BFGoodrich(R) g-Force(TM) COMP-2(TM) A/S tire puts the best of both worlds in one tire. When tested against the leading competitors, it stopped up to 15 feet shorter on wet roads and 5 feet shorter on dry roads.
Its superior traction isn't just good for braking in both dry and wet conditions, it also helps your vehicle accelerate faster, ensuring you don’t forfeit your vehicle’s performance to Mother Nature.
What if you hydroplane?
ACP has driven in all types of conditions across terrains all over the globe – including a recent expedition down an ice road onto the frozen Arctic Ocean. He says it’s important to think like and become a performance driver in the situations where the road conditions deteriorate to ensure you do not lose control.
“Panicking is the worst thing to do. If you start hydroplaning, slow the vehicle down gradually, don’t slam on the brakes. Ride it out and be ready for when your tires regain traction with the road,” ACP says. "Those who drive the fastest typically have the slowest control input: they brake slower, they steer smoothly, and these are the types of things that will save you in a skid.”
ACP also says the key to this calmness is having a good understanding of your vehicle, its tires, and their limitations.
"You need to be able to feel where the edge of your vehicle and its tires are so you know exactly how much you can push it in any climate or condition. A tire that communicates with you when it's sliding and when it's stopping is crucial," he says. That kind of sensitivity is what makes tires so important for a performance driver like ACP and why he chooses the g-Force(TM) Comp-2(TM) A/S tire, because, as he says, "with these tires, you can feel your vehicle come back into control progressively. It’s like the tires talk to you."
High performance tires help you respond to unexpected situations, whether you’re hydroplaning or starting to skid out. While greater traction during wet weather seasons is certainly argument enough, these tires also open your car's potential, making for a much more fun driving experience regardless of the forecast.
Take steps now to prevent your family from becoming another accident statistic by installing radar-detected forward collision warning and lane departure warning technology on your vehicle. Getting it installed aftermarket in your current vehicle at a fraction of the cost can save you money in the short- and long-term while keeping you safe.
Increasing Road Safety with Cost-Effective Technology
(Family Features) Driving conditions have drastically changed in recent years, and thanks to the rise of cell phones and smart devices there are more distracted drivers on the road than ever before. In fact, the National Safety Council reports that 1.6 million crashes each year are a direct result of cell phone use while driving.
So what steps can you take now to prevent your family from becoming another accident statistic?
Forward collision warning and lane departure warning technology can be the difference between an average commute and a tragedy on the highway. The systems use radar technology to detect if you get too close to an obstacle or another vehicle, which signals the system to sound an alarm – providing up to five full seconds of extra reaction time. That may not seem like much, but imagine how far you can go in five seconds when speeding down the freeway at 60 mph.
This technology isn’t just available in new luxury cars. You can get it installed aftermarket in your current vehicle at a fraction of the cost.
Safe Drive Systems is leading the charge in helping drivers protect themselves and their families on the road by providing affordable forward collision and lane departure technology that can be outfitted into almost any car.
Here are just a few ways that collision avoidance systems can save you money in the short- and long-term while keeping you safe:
Don’t wait for mandatory collision-avoidance technology. Government and consumer advocacy groups are attempting to make forward collision warning technology mandatory in all new cars by 2022. However, you don’t need to wait to protect your family – the technology is available now. This potentially life-saving upgrade is available to all consumers, and getting it installed in your vehicle can provide you and your family a safer driving experience years before the auto dealers will begin manufacturing the technology in standard models – at a higher price point.
Upgrade your safety features without buying a new car. Most manufacturers and dealerships won’t add collision avoidance technology to a car that’s already been purchased. However, you don’t have to buy an expensive car to be safer on the road. Drivers need to be aware of cost-effective aftermarket solutions that can be installed in almost any automobile. This technology can add up to $4,000 to the price of a new car from the manufacturer, but consumers can install it in their current vehicle for half that cost. And with some aftermarket vendors offering interest-free financing, making it even more affordable, there is no need to wait for the government mandate or purchase a brand new vehicle.
Reduce accidents and prevent hikes on insurance premiums. When drivers get into a car accident, they can often expect to pay thousands in insurance surcharges and fees over time on top of repair costs. Avoid these costs by relying on technology that assures a reduction in accidents. Some collision-avoidance vendors are even willing to pay up to 50 percent of your insurance deductible if an accident should occur.
You’re not just surrounded by other drivers when you’re on the road, you’re surrounded by text messages, tweets and apps too. With 80 percent of today’s car accidents caused by driver inattention, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there’s no reason for waiting to take necessary and cost-effective steps to make your car safer.
For more information and tips on how to make your vehicle safer and reduce accidents, call 855-826-4234 or visit safedrivesystems.com.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Regular car care helps ensure that your vehicle looks and runs its best, and timing your car care to the seasons can help ensure all of your equipment is in top condition to protect your safety in seasonal weather conditions. Ensure you and your car are well-protected and ready for spring with this spring car care checklist.
Get Your Car Spring Ready
Car care tips for safe driving in seasonal weather
(Family Features) Spring breezes may be blowing, but before you put those windows down and settle in for a leisurely drive to soak up that fresh air, your car needs some seasonal freshening of its own.
One of the most common threats in spring is stormy weather, which can affect your visibility and traction. Ensure you and your car are well-protected and ready for spring with this spring car care checklist.
Give your car a checkup
Your engine relies on clean oil for smooth operation, so if it’s time for a change (usually every 3,000 to 5,000 miles, depending on manufacturer recommendations) you can schedule a change to coincide with your service appointment.
Keep your view safe and clear
Traditional metal wiper blades, installed on many new cars, have exposed suspension components that can become damaged with exposure to extreme weather. Newer vehicles may include beam blades, with a pre-sprung steel beam designed specifically for that vehicle. However, many replacement beam blade designs are compromised to fit a large array of vehicle models and do not properly adapt to the varying curvature of windshields. This results in reduced wrap and contact pressure on the windshield, as well as poor wiping performance.
A better option is hybrid blades, such as Michelin Stealth Hybrid wiper blades, which feature an exclusive Smart Flex technology that automatically adjusts wiper blade contact pressure across the curvature of the windshield for improved wiping performance. Engineered for durable wiping in extreme weather conditions, the wiper frame and suspension system are completely covered to protect the blades from weather-related damage. The Michelin EZ-Lok Connector System allows for a quick and simple blade replacement. Learn more at MichelinWipers.com.
If your vehicle has a rear wiper, remember to replace it, too.
Check your traction
Show your shine
Protect and preserve your vehicle with products, such as Barrett-Jackson Auto Care’s full line of interior and exterior products. Liquid Wax, a signature product in the line, is specially designed with Carnauba wax to achieve a long-lasting, deep shine with no powdery residue. Barrett-Jackson Wash & Wax saves time by lifting away dirt and enhancing shine in one step, while the rapid detailer is great for those in between touch ups. For an all-over shine to complete the freshly cleaned look, Tire Shine is a quick, no-hassle way to maintain sleek, wet-look tires. Make sure to select a tire shine that will not sling off on your car when driving.
Once the exterior is complete, turn your attention inside. Pick up any trash or debris, vacuum and wipe down all interior surfaces. A moisturizing treatment will help clean and condition leather, preventing it from drying out and cracking. Also give interior glass a wipe down for the clearest visibility possible and be sure to pick an interior protectant that doesn’t leave behind a greasy residue to help renew and protect all interior surfaces, including plastic, vinyl, rubber and trim.
Find more information about these and other products designed to keep your car looking flawless at barrett-jacksonautocare.com.
Slick Tips for Driving on Wet Roads
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (man cleaning silver car)
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