Looking for a New Domain Name

I thought I would put the word out that I am looking for a new domain name for this auto blog.  You might have seen that yesterday I have been online for 3 years, which is a big milestone for me.  Since this is such a big milestone I thought I would consider another buying another domain name so I can expand this blog.  Like a lot of people I choose a domain name because;

  1. It was available
  2. I thought it made sense
  3. It seemed catchy

While I still like the name “Adam's Auto Advice” I think that it doesn't reflect where I wan to take this blog as a site and it doesn't make sense.  Since it was available for the $10 registration fee it didn't seem like a big deal to me.  I think the name is catchy at least.  

So if you have a domian name that is auto related and would be ideal for this blog let me know.  I am mainly looking for these keywords in a domain;

  • Car / Cars
  • Auto / Autos
  • Motor / Motors

Preferably the domain should be two words and no longer than 15 letters long.  My budgets is $50 but I might go higher for the right domain name.  If you think you have something to offer please visit my contact page and let me know via email.  I am glad to take offers from domainers and any web entrepreneurs.

Changing to a new domain can be a challenging and exciting experience, but hopefully I am making the right choice.

DoorShox Car Door Protection Made Easy

One of the most annoying things for any car owner is coming out to your car in a parking lot and noticing a freshly minted dent or ding on your door. You look around because you know that wasn't there before you went into the store. Well if you are tired of this happening than I have a good solution for you, it's called a DoorShox.

What is a DoorShox? If the picture doesn't make it clear, essentially the DoorShox is a device that helps you keep unwanted dings, scratches, and knicks from affecting your precious paint on your car doors. At first the DoorShox sounds a little too good to be true. However having used the Standard and Valet DoorShox models I can you tell you that the DoorShox is actually a well designed automotive product.

The DoorShox sticks to your car door with magnets. This allows it to stick securely to your car doors but makes taking them off a cinch. The DoorShox magnets are covered in silicone to prevent scratching your car paint.

doorshox
DoorShox Magnet

With the silicone covered magnets this means the DoorShox can work on virtually any car or any car door. That is unless you have plastic car doors, in which case I would recommend you find some new wheels.

The first thing that struck me when I took the standard DoorShox out of the box and placed it onto my car was how well it is made. The rubber material is strong, yet flexible which helps absorb impacts from reckless and annoying opening car doors, should there happen to be any. I even asked someone who was curios about what I was putting onto my car to open their car door onto mine.  It worked flawlessly.  As well the security cable holding the two DoorShox pieces on the standard model is also quite thick and sturdy.  I even left the DoorShox on my car in the rain and it didn't move.

What's the market for the DoorShox? Well, anyone with a car that has doors. I at least hope your car has doors! 🙂

The DoorShox would be useful for instance if you are leasing a car, which is not a good idea. This is because when you go to turn in a leased vehicle the dealership goes over the the leased car with a fine tooth comb. They try to find any dent, ding, or scratch or other imperfection on the car they car charge you for. It's the nature of the leasing business. With the DoorShox you would have some reassurance that at least door dings wouldn't be a problem. Other areas and parts of your car you might need to be a little more careful.

I would also recommend the DoorShox if you know anyone that keeps getting their car doors dinged.  It would make an excellent Christmas or holiday gift for a gearhead or auto enthusiast.

The DoorShox is made by made by the same people that make the BumpShox, a bumper protection device which I have also used and tested.  You can checkout my review of the BumpShox.

You can buy the DoorShox directly from the website if you want to stop your door dings.  The Valet DoorShox is $70 and Standard DoorShox is $120 which might sound expensive until you get a body shop estimate.  You can also order the Standard DoorShox and Valet DoorShox from Amazon if you feel more comfortable.

 

2013 Acura ILX, the Best of Both Worlds

The last thing someone wants to do is shell out $20,000 for a new car and then have their family's physical well-being be in jeopardy. With every unveiling of a new or updated model, the safety of the vehicle is always a consideration for a buyer and the 2013 Acura ILX is no exception.

The ILX contains many parts derived from the Honda Civic sedan model. Considering the Civic's reputation as a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, that's a good sign.

Honda's ownership of the Acura brand has resulted in a fairly simple transition from the manufacturing of Honda parts to Acura parts. In addition to its shared safety and performance features, the ILX is offered at a substantially lower price than any comparable Acura model in the past. With that said, while the ILX shines in certain aspects, it lacks in others.

What The Acura ILX Has to Offer

  • The ILX features a variety of Acura parts in each of three models. The first features a 2.4-liter, 201-hp engine remarkably similar to that of the Honda Civic Si. The smaller model ILX has a 2.0-liter, 150-hp engine with a five-speed automatic transmission and custom paddle shifters. Both models get anywhere from 20 to 35 MPG, depending on driving conditions.
  • The third model is perhaps the most attractive to the modern car shopper because it is a hybrid. As you may have guessed, the Acura ILX Hybrid is derived from the 2012 Civic Hybrid. No surprise there, but it still has a decent 110-hp, 1.5-liter, 4-cylinder engine and Honda's CVT transmission.
  • Due to the ILX’s front wheel drive, it holds nearly two-thirds of its weight in the front end of the car. To compensate, it features increased grip on the nose, allowing the ILX to corner steadier and with increased traction.
  • Again borrowing from the Civic, but differing slightly, the ILX's frame includes a prominent overhang meant to draw out the car's hood. On the back end, the ILX has a sedan-like trunk featuring a slight deck lid. Overall, the car’s design appears far more similar to that of a Honda than an Acura.

What’s Inside?

The ILX's interior is reminiscent of other Acura models both past and present. The shifter and center console, along with many other interior aspects, bears a striking resemblance to the Acura TSX. From the driver and passenger seat frames to the upper and lower dashboard, the ILX borrows a lot from its Acura siblings.

In addition, the ILX has a premium package available that includes the latest automobile technology with voice navigation, Bluetooth hands-free technology, weather/traffic updates, rear camera and patented AcuraLink communication system built in.

Conclusion

There is no question that the new 2013 Acura ILX has borrowed a few parts from the Honda Civic. With the safety of a Civic and a selling price starting at $25,900, the LXI lands on the middle ground between security and appealing design. But for those who are concerned with safety and affordability over luxury, the Acura ILX is a solid option.

by Annabella Clavette

Car Talk’s “Click and Click” Brothers are Calling it Quits After 25 Years

Ray and Tom Magliozzi of Car Talk

Well there is some surprising news in the automotive and media world today.  Tom and Ray Magliozzi who are the hosts of the very popular radio show “Car Talk” on National Public Radio (NPR) are calling it quits after more than 25 years on the air.  The news was confirmed on the Car Talk website via the staff blog in a posting entitled “Time to Get Even Lazier.”   The two brothers and hosts of the show stated they would not be continuing with the popular radio show.  They are also known as “Click and Clack the Tappet Brothers.”

“As of October, we’re not going to be recording any more new shows.   That’s right, we’re retiring.” declared Tom on the Car Talk blog.  The show will still have reruns though as Ray said, “Every week, starting in October, NPR will broadcast a newly assembled Car Talk show, selected from the best material in our archives.”

I am personally a huge fan of Car Talk and was very upset to hear this news.  I am sure lots of other people are as well.

Man Straps Four Kids to the Hood of a Car thinking “They would like it!” … WTF?

Kids Strapped to Hood!

Just when you thought crazy stories of stupid parents doing stupid things couldn't get any worse, Aaron S. Stefanski has surprised Fort Wayne police (and everyone) by strapping his four children to the hood of his car!

Yes, unfortunately you read that right.

The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne reported that Stefanski, who is 29 years old, was arrested in Fort Wayne, Indiana on Monday night. The police allege he drove out of a liquor store parking lot with his kids attached to the hood of a car secured using a tow strap. The children's ages range from 4, 5, 6 and 7 and it seems Stefanski was under the very wrong impression that they would enjoy.

The journey lasted for only three blocks. Thankfully a US marshal who was in the area saw the ridiculous car with kids strapped to the hood, and had the common sense to pull over Stefanski and call the police.

The kids had been secured, “with one of those straps you crank on a semi to hold down lumber, they were strapped with that thing, wiggling and wobbling down the street,” said Tom Nowak who witnessed the event when he spoke with the Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne.

The newspaper reported that the children were not harmed by the incident.  (Thankfully!)

Not surprisingly, Stefanski was driving intoxicated and had a blood alcohol content of .17, which is twice the state of Indiana's legal limit. This was what the Fort Wayne Police Department reported.

He is being charged with driving under the influence and neglect of a dependent. Jessica A. Clark, another passenger in the car with him, is also being charge with child neglect. Clark is also 29 years of age and it is unclear if the two were in a relationship.

Three of the children were Stefanski's, and they are currently being cared for by her mother. She was apparently not aware of the transportation methods used by the children's father, until police called her. One of the children strapped to the car, along with Stefanski's three children, was Clark's.

Some of you might remember the story of Shawndeeia Joann Bowen was charged with three counts of child endangerment who was driving while texting with her toddler in her lap. Also she did not have her other two children properly restrained in a seatbelt or carseat.

As terrible as Bowen's actions were, at least she had her kids INSIDE her car while it was moving. Unlike Stefanski and Clark who though it was ok to strap them to the outside of the car!

Seriously people…WTF?

BumpShox Protects Front Bumpers from Bad Drivers

BumpShox, Front Bumper Protection!

Do you hate it when bad drivers hit your bumper? Sooo annoying… especially if it's a brand new car!

BumpShox might be your solution. The BumpShox bumper protector is a relatively new foam-based automotive product that looks like a big oversized license plate holder (well it is), but it is a bumper protector. It fits in place of any standard license plate and can be installed easily on virtually any car.

I have been testing the BumpShox for awhile, on several vehicles. I liked using the BumpShox on all of our cars (a 2002 Toyota Camry, 1996 Honda Accord.) Not that it really adds to the look of the Camry or Accord, but it sure is a conversation starter when people notice it, point, and ask “Hey, what's that?”

However, one of the points of the The BumpShox is it's unobtrusive, small, and does not detract too much from the look of the car, at least when compared to other bumper protectors. Typically other bumper protectors or bumper guards will cover the whole bumper and are pretty damn ugly. What's the point of owning a Mustang if you can't enjoy the beautiful lines?

For the most part the BumpShox is not that noticeable. Once you get used to it, it's sort of a fun little addition to your car.

On one of my roadtrips, I parked my Accord in a large parking lot with a few cars. You would assume there was little use for a BumpShox in this situation. When I came out of the store, to my surprise someone had parked a tad to close to my car! The BumpShox was cushioning my car's bumper against a hideous Dodge Caliber.  (Who drives a Caliber anyway?)  I was quite pleased with this and the BumpShox saved me a a weekend of DIY bodywork, which probably would have come out with bad results.

So for protecting your front bumper against stupid and bad drivers, even in large parking lots, the BumpShox can work well.

Where the BumpShox supposedly really shines is in tight parallel parking spaces in cities. The only issue is that it is only going to protect your bumper when you are in the space or parking and moving forward to reposition your car.

Because the BumpShox is unobtrusive and small it won't protect the majority of your bumper at various angles when parking. Only slow front end taps will the foam cushion work.

For complete bumper protection, the BumpShox is not necessarily ideal. Of course larger bumper protectors that cover your whole bumper cost $150+. That's a lot to shell out! If you are tired of having bad drivers hit your beautiful bumper, the $35 bucks it costs to buy a BumpShox is probably a good investment. If you want to buy two, it will cost $60.

I can't guarantee that the BumpShox will work in all situations. For light front-end taps and bumper protection from bad drivers who can't park, even in a large parking lot, it did it's job well on my Accord. That's good enough for me! 🙂

Sylvania Silverstar Ultras Make The Road Bright & Visible

You get into your car after a long day at work. The sun set long ago and it's dark out so you get in, put on your seatbelt (right?), then turn on your headlights. Lights…what lights? You can hardly see anything in front of you!

If you find yourself in this situation with your headlights, I recommend replacing the bulbs asap. If you are going to be replacing your headlights anyway, why not upgrade to some really bright Sylvania Silverstar Ultras?

I have been using a set of Sylvania Silverstar Ultras (#9006) in my Honda Accord for the past few weeks, and I got to say, “Wow!” having a brighter set of bulbs in your car makes a big difference while driving at night.

After driving around for awhile with such awesome and bright headlights, you tend to forget the dimness of the old bulbs. For comparison sake and for this review, I decided to put one of my old lightbulbs back in my headlights and drive my Honda Accord around. The difference between the Silverstar Ultras and my old bulbs would be much more visible side-by-side.

It was a bit hard to get a good picture at night (even with my Canon Rebel), but the difference is clear and incredible!

Bright!

You can see how the Silverstar Ultras fill out the headlight more, while the old bulb just doesn't cut it.  Honestly the one Silverstar Ultra bulb lights up the road well and compensates somewhat for the old bulb's lack of brightness.  The Silverstar Ultras were bright enough for to me realize my lights were out of alignment too.  (That was nothing that a screwdriver and a bit of patience couldn't fix.)

The only problem I have read about with these Sylvania Silverstar Ultras is a lot of people complain that they don't last long.  If you look on the back of the packaging there is a graphic that shows the Sylvania Silverstar Ultras are indeed bright, but show their life is much shorter.  Also “SYLVANIA Silverstar Ultra lamps are engineered to achieve the highest performance possible, which results in product life that is less than standard lamps.” is also printed on the back of the packaging.

That doesn't really bother me as I would rather replace really bright bulbs more often, than drive with bulbs that don't light up the road well at all.  So far I have experienced no issues with the bulbs deteriorating in brightness or going out prematurely.

The Silverstar Ultra packaging does claim to improve your forward visibility by 40% and side visibility by 50%. I think those claims are a bit lofty. After making proper adjustments, my guesstimate would be that Silverstar Ultras improve forward visibility by 30%-25% and maybe 30% on the sides.

Of course there is no easy way for me to truly measure or test my guesstimated numbers.  Getting out a measuring tape was futile!

The brightness of the bulbs makes for a much more enjoyable and safe night driving experience though.  The light that the Sylvania Silverstar Ultras bulbs puts out is much more focused, clear, and full then what I had before which was terrible.

Results can vary depending upon the condition of your headlights. If you have cloudy or yellowed headlights, getting a set of Silverstar Ultras bulbs will not improve visibility too much. The best thing for you to do is buy a headlight restoration kit and spend an afternoon restoring them to a clear and visible condition.  Then buy new bulbs if they are not good.

Bottom line, I used to dread having to drive my Accord at night or in bad weather because I thought I would hit another car, person, or object. Now it's not as much of a problem with the Sylvania Silverstar Ultras installed.