Automotive Air Conditioners

It’s August, the car is jammed with kids and luggage, and you’re finally on your way to the cottage. Suddenly you realize that your car’s air conditioning system is on the fritz, and your family vacation really starts to heat up.

Automotive air conditioning systems were first introduced in 1940 to address customer demands for relief from unbearable heat. These systems use refrigerant to cool the air and remove the heat from the car’s passenger compartment. Air conditioning also cleans the air that enters the car, and removes excess moisture as it dehumidifies the air.

There are three basic components to any automotive air conditioner system:

1. Compressor–Considered the heart of the air conditioning system, the compressor transfers and compresses refrigerant gas to let the heat out of the car.

2. Condenser–removes heat from the refrigerant and cools down the high-pressure gasses.

3. Evaporator–Acts as the heater core of the air conditioning system. The evaporator removes the heat from inside the car. The refrigerant then condenses the air and transforms it into water.

Cars manufactured in 1995 or later have been equipped with R-134A air conditioning system. These ozone-friendly units do not contain CFCs, are nontoxic and nonflammable.

Prior to 1995, automotive air conditioners came with R-12 refrigerant, most commonly Freon. During that time, a car owner experiencing air conditioner problems needed only to visit a local retailer to purchase a recharge kit. With a can of Freon and basic knowledge, the average driver could easily repair his or her own air conditioning system. When studies confirmed that R-12 systems were contributing to the damaged ozone layer, many countries including the United States banned their manufacture.

Common Problems

The most common complaint about automotive air conditioners, particularly R-134 systems, is the odor that permeates from the A/C vents. Mechanics and car manufacturers have concluded that accumulated bacteria and fungus in the evaporator core likely cause the odor. Because the air conditioning system is loaded with moisture, it attracts microbes. The solution offered by automakers is to make the blower motor effective in drying out the evaporator after the A/C system is turned off. General Motors introduced this breakthrough, called Electronic Evaporator Dryer.

This solution might offer relief to some car owners, but not to all. Installing this system can cost hundred of dollars. As a result, many car owners have resorted to finding alternative methods of fighting the odor. Using antibacterial chemicals such as Lysol can be an effective short-term solution. Keeping a can of Lysol handy can go along way for your odorous air problem. Just spay the Lysol inside the car, and in the air intake once a week, for temporary relief from the problem. Another way to help eliminate the odor is to shut off the A/C unit at least one mile before reaching your destination. This will allow enough time for the evaporator to dry out, essentially doing away with the moisture and microbes that cause odor. This can be the easiest and least expensive method in combating the issue.

Caring For Your A/C System

* To keep working efficiently, your automotive air conditioner must be recharged from time to time, depending on how often it is are used. Consult your mechanic or your owner’s manual for information about system recharges.

* Call your mechanic if you see water leaking from the A/C system’s condenser, as this can affect the refrigerant. Have the system repaired before refilling it.

* Replacing the filter once every three months will also help to maintain the performance of your automotive air conditioning system. This is where dust builds up when the A/C system is running.

* Setting the gauge at one specific temperature will also help it perform well. If you constantly switch from one temperature to another, your system will have trouble adjusting accordingly.

Automotive air conditioners can be a driver’s best friend, whether you’re traveling across town or from coast to coast. Keep your A/C unit well maintained, and keep your cool on the road.

Automotive Painting

A car with an excellent paint job is one of life’s true joys. It’s like being the kid with the best bike in the neighbourhood or the biggest piece of birthday cake. Whether you drive a ’47 Eldorado, a ’66 Beetle or an ’07 fortwo, a great paint job will take your vehicle from ho-hum to headturner.

Actually creating a great automotive paint job takes skill and finesse. Automotive painting is one of the most arduous and painstaking tasks in crafting an automobile. It can also be one of the most costly. If you are on a budget, there are options for you. Some paint shops can deliver a good paint job for a fair price. Your other option is to take on the task yourself. If the paint job is a success, you’ll have even more to brag about: a hot set of wheels AND a “do it yourself” tale to tell.

Achieving a great paint job is a step-by-step process. You simply can’t rush automotive painting. Follow the basic steps of preparation, primer application, blocking, final paint coat and detail application. This can seem like a daunting task for any beginner, but the entire job can be completed in just a few days.

Prepare

Before you begin, check with local bylaws and regulations regarding the use of spray paint in homes and enclosed areas. The last thing you need is a legal holdup delaying your painting job.

Cleaning the car is your next crucial step. The car must be spotlessly clean and free of dirt. Use detergents to clean the car top to bottom, and then follow up with grease removers. After the car has been cleaned, it’s time to begin sanding. An air sander (preferably a dual-action sander) should be used to remove the old paint from the car. This kind of sander will not cause body damage because it removes paint without digging like other sanders and grinders. Every trace of paint must be removed to create a perfect palette for your new paint job. Automotive detailing tape or even duct tape can be used to cover and protect other parts of the car, including plastic moldings and windows. In addition to removing the old paint, all traces of rust have to be sanded off. Rust will spread if ignored or untreated, and the last thing you want is body rot happening beneath your spiffy new paint. You can repair minor body flaws on the car’s surface using fillers. Shape the compound with care using a sanding board, then follow up with a glazing compound. This step will help to ensure a smooth-as-glass finish on your ride.

Mask

After the whole car has been initially cleaned, then sanded, a final cleaning takes place and the vehicle is ready to be masked. In this step, every part of the car that shouldn’t be touched by paint is covered and protected. Remember, you will be using high-grade automotive paint that doesn’t wash off with water. Cover your windows, every light and reflector, all window rubbers, all chrome, tires, wheels, door handles, wipers.. take a good look and what needs to be masked. If you don’t want even the tiniest bit of over spray on it, cover it up! The tools and materials needed for masking are available at automotive supply warehouses and hardware stores.

Prime

Priming is an essential step to providing a good foundation for your new paint. A flawless prime coat will help you to achieve a perfect paint job. Valspar epoxy is a good primer choice, combining dependable filling capabilities with minimal shrinking. After the primer has been applied, a second coat in a contrasting colour should be applied on top of the first layer. This will serve as a sanding guide. The primer should be sanded to a smooth finish, but don’t sand too vigorously or you could actually damage the body of the car. When the priming is complete, a sealer is applied and a final sanding takes place.

Finishing off

In finishing off the automotive painting, it is essential to achieve uniform colour. The spray gun should be held ten to twelve inches away from the body to avoid streaks and runs. This is necessary when applying the basecoat, final coat and clear coat.

Regardless of the type of car you drive, a new paint job can turn it into a real showstopper. Automotive painting can be a time consuming task, but you can do it if you take it step by step. The creative energy will be good for your soul, and the compliments you receive will be great for your confidence.

Automotive – Tvr

The TVR brand name and image is one of the most typically British of all time. The name and sight of the vehicles inspire thoughts of theatre, passion and excitement. For the past sixty years TVR have produced performance sports cars that have been amongst the worlds most revered and powerful. The cars produced are iconic and distinctive and have ensured TVR are at the forefront of car aficionados minds when the performance vehicles are discussed.

The current model range from TVR includes three vehicles. The new Sagaris, the Tuscan S and the Tuscan S Convertible. All three of these cars are prime examples of TVR’s ability to marry style and sophistication. The Sagaris uses dramatic lines and sweeps to make it the ultimate racing car for the open road. The new Sagaris is as powerful and performs as well as it looks like it should. The Tuscan S is a mark II model and the latest incarnation of the legendary TVR. Again it couples dramatic design with powerful performance to ensure anyone who uses the Tuscan S will have a drive to remember. The Tuscan S Convertible combines the Tuscan’s already memorable driving experience with the unbridled exhilaration of driving a convertible sports car. This said, the Tuscan S Convertible is not merely a coupe with the roof removed. The functionality of the car has been completely redesigned to ensure a brand new driving experience.

One of the most famous TVR’s of all time is the TVR Chimaera. This car combined raw power with the all the famous looks of a classic sports car. Some critics describe the TVR Chimaera as being all brawn and no brains, with a very loud engine and that it can at times be difficult to handle. This car has been described as offering what can only be called a proper driving experience!

Although TVR has been and still is an iconic name in the world of sports cars and the brand has many fans throughout the world there are and have been some questions over build quality which has affected the company’s reputation. Poor build quality has hindered the company for a long time and is probably the main reason as to why TVR has not seen the same level of commercial success as its rivals at Porsche and Ferrari. Unreliability issues have sometimes outweighed the advantages of the TVR range which include the fact it sounds great, drives great and looks exceptional and led to consumers, however sentimental, choosing more reliable and slightly less romantic options when deciding upon their sports car.

Two major advantages of choosing to purchase a TVR are the performance and the low depreciation rate. Some TVR’s have been measured at doing 0 miles per hour to 60 miles per hour in 4.6 seconds. This statistic is one of the most impressive in the performance car field and is a major selling point. The fact that TVR’s are relatively rare cars means that they do not depreciate at the rate of some of their rivals which also makes them desirable.

TVR has a reputation for great looking cars, and for having a strong following amongst sports car enthusiasts. Although let down by reliability issues there is no substitute for the romance and passion generated by seeing, hearing and driving one of these British cars.

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