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.

MD State Emissions Test

Write on the Envelope to make sure you don't forget the Emissions due date

Today I had to go do what most Marylanders dread, the MD State Emissions Test.  This is something you are required to do every 2 years to make sure your vehicle is not spewing too much noxious Co2 into the atmosphere in the great state of Maryland.

I waited longer than it took to actually do the test.  As most know all the test really is is hooking up your car to a computer.  What the technician did to my car today was hook-up my car to the OBDII scanner, check for a code, and that was it.  If my car didn't have a OBDII or OBDI port they just would have not checked for any codes.  He also did what is known as a “Gas Cap” test, essentially just to make sure the gas cap is there.

I left feeling great I had my emissions test out of the way and was at least glad it only took me about 1 hour and 15 minutes from my house to the emissions place on Erdman Avenue and back.  You know I realized when I got back to my house, it is just a good way for MD to make some money.  What do you think?

2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show – February 10th-12th

Timonium Motorcycle Show - Harley Davidson Iron 883

Some people might be excited about the Baltimore Auto Show that kicked off today.  Those who love motorcycles in the Baltimore area should be equally excited.  That is because the 2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show is this weekend and looks to be better than every.

The Timonium Motorcycle Show is the Mid-Atlantic regions largest motorcycle show and takes place at the Maryland State Fairgrounds.  New bikes from all the major manufacturers will be covering over 175,000 sq ft. of indoor floorspace.  There will also be custom bike galore as bikers car show off their motorcycles to win in the Bike Show in lots of different classes.  Exhibitors will be selling all sorts of motorcycle goods, accessories, and services.

As usual Michele Smith, the actress and model who hosts “Two Wheel Thunder on the Discover Channel, will be at the show all three days.  She will act as a host and master of ceremonies for several of the planned events.  Emilo Rivera, who plays Marcus Alvarez on the hit FX show “Sons of Anarchy,” will be at the show on Saturday and Sunday to meet the fans.  You can meet him up close and personal, but I hope he is nicer than his character on TV.  Ron Finch, the famous custom bike builder, will be in attendance too.  His motorcycles truly are works of art formed out of metal.

Something most guys will be looking forward to is the International Bikini Team competition taking place over the three days of the show.  The lovely contestants will vie for a chance to win a spot to go to the International Bikini Team U.S. Finals in the Bahamas in August.  I can imagine the competition will be strong and the girls will be pulling out all the stops to win.  I will be looking forward to this.

If you love motorcycles, the 2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show will be the place for you to be this weekend.  The show will be so jam packed with great events, motorcycles, and offerings it is hard to write about it all.  Visit the website for more information and the schedule of events.

What: 2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show

When: February 10th-12th (Friday-Sunday)

Where: Maryland State Fairgrounds, 2200 York Road, Timonium, MD 21093

Admission: $15 for Adults ($10 with $5 off coupon via website), $5 for Children 10-15 years old, Free Children under 10

 

 

Meguiar’s Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer Review

Car sales in 2012 are estimated to expand, which is great for all automakers. However, many owners are keeping their cars longer than every before. Hey, buying a new car is pretty dam expensive, and you need to buy a new washing machine and dryer before you can buy a new car. (Unfortunately those not so fun purchases just wiped out your new car budget.  Sorry to hear that buddy!)

The thing is your trusty reliable car, while you love it and have no plans to get rid of it, is showing some wear and tear and age. One clear way you know when a car is aging is when the plastic fading.  What are you supposed to do?  Well, Meguiar's has a great product which might help with this, Meguiar's Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer.

Basically Meguiar's Ultimate Black does what you think it does, restore plastic. Black plastic is on most cars, whether it be our Camry with a black interior or my Honda Accord with a beige interior, usually has some black.  So this product is fairly universal and applicable on most vehicles.

I used the Plastic Restorer on my Honda Accord, and I got to say, “Wow!” it looked great! I couldn't believe the results actually.  To be honest, it worked a lot better than I thought it would.  It really helped make my car look better, and not show it's age as much.  Meguiar's Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer worked so well, before I knew what I started doing as many plastic parts of the car as I could.

After I was done, and it dried a bit I noticed the effect of the plastic restorer had worn off a bit. I checked the instructions and saw it said sometimes a few coats are needed. So after letting the first coat dry for day or two, I reapplied a coat, let it dry, then did it again.

Check out my before and after pictures, where there is 3 coats on the plastic.  What do you think?

Bottom line… it might be hard to see in some of the pictures, but yes, Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer works.  You can see that I even used it on some dried up wax that was on my license plate holder.  (That is what the white spot is, probably should have been more careful.)  It didn't mask it completely, but did a good job of blackening up the plastic enough so you don't quite see it as much now.  My only complaint of Meguiar's Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer, I used up the bottle to quickly!

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If you have any questions about this product, please leave a comment below.

Switched out my License Plates

Yesterday I finally switched out my license plates from the California ones I had on my Honda Accord, to the Maryland ones I got from the MVA awhile ago. It was bit a sad for me, since I kind of liked having those CA plates on my car.  I guess it made me think of how nice CA is and how I want go back there.

The new redesigned MD plates are kind of fun though.  They have this red, white, and blue Star-Spangled Banner theme.