The motor car today is a reliable machine, which means that, for the most part, we can start a journey knowing we are going to get to our destination without event. Unfortunately, some breakdowns cannot be avoided, even after regular trips to the garage for routine maintenance. Unforeseen events can happen, but any number of tools and products sold on eBay can save the day. Motorists should know which recovery tools and repair kits are available, since this can mean the difference between a journey quickly resumed and a cancelled trip.
The marketplace for recovery tools is well supplied, and offers many variations of the same tools. Thus, understanding how to select between them can mean money well invested rather than unnecessarily wasted. Buying a set of recovery tools is also a simple way to provide additional insurance against the potential dangers of travelling on the road.
Problems with Electrics
Breakdown problems associated with a car's electrics are normally caused by a few central components. The failure of some components, such as the alternator or starter motor, might require a visit to the garage to have the component replaced. If either of these devices fails while the car is on the road, membership in a rescue organisation ensures the car can be towed to a suitable garage quickly.
A car battery stores the electricity required to initially turn the engine over and start the car. It is also used to power electrics before the engine starts, at which time the alternator takes over charging duties. Batteries have a limited lifespan, and eventually need to be replaced. When a battery reaches the end of its life, it can no longer hold a sufficient charge to start the engine. This problem is made worse by cold weather, so a short trip to the supermarket can result in a car that does not start for the return journey.
Jump leads are a useful addition to the tyre well of any car. Prepared drivers should own a set to jumpstart a dead battery and avoid being stranded. Choose jump leads with sufficient length. 3.6 m. is the standard length, although heavy-duty professional jump leads may be longer. Leads with a rating of 600 amps and higher are recommended, and a solid pair of clamps at both ends of the cables is important to ensure a good connection.
For cars with more boot space, a booster pack is an alternative to jump leads, and is useful in remote locations or at times of day when no other cars are near. A booster pack is a simple, powerful device that contains a battery with enough charge for an emergency start; thus, it does not require another car to provide a jump. The user simply connects the booster cables to the car battery terminals, and the booster provides enough charge to turn an engine and start the car. These devices require recharging after use, and should be checked regularly to make sure the booster battery is retaining its charge.
Individual Electrical Component Failure
Car fuses ensure that vulnerable electrical circuits are not damaged by short circuits and degraded wiring. Should some, but not all, of the car's electrical components fail, this might indicate a blown fuse. A simple set of car fuses kept in the glove compartment is often all that is required to solve this problem on the road. Visual inspection of the cars fuses normally reveals which one has failed. However, if this is not immediately evident, drivers can use a fuse tester to determine which one went bad. There are a range of devices available, including some about the size of a screwdriver. Fuse testers have a light or other indicator to tell if the fuse is working; they are small enough to be part of the emergency kit that fits inside a tyre well.
Problems with a car's tyres can occur while on the road, but some simple tools kept in the boot or tyre well can make getting back on the road quick and easy. All cars are required by law to carry a spare tyre, but using the spare may not always be the most practical solution. It may be buried underneath a pile of goods or groceries. Or the tyre may not be available at all, if the vehicle experienced more than one flat tyre at the same time.
A slow puncture can often be dealt with by re-inflating it to the correct pressure. Car booster packs usually feature a built-in air compressor, as well as a battery charger. The booster can power the air compressor long enough to re-inflate the tyre. Users should perform regular checks to ensure the booster battery remains charged, or else it may not hold enough power to inflate a tyre when needed.
A completely flat tyre should be changed, but this may not always be convenient or possible. It may even be too dangerous, if a puncture occurs on a motorway. Puncture repair aerosols, sometimes referred to as "tyre weld", contain a mixture of compressed gas and latex. This is injected into the tyre using the tyre valve. Once inside the tyre, the tyre weld repairs the puncture and inflates the tyre inflates, allowing the driver to get to a repair shop. Kits of this nature are small enough to fit in the glove compartment or tyre well, and although they do not provide a permanent fix, they do allow a journey to be completed without too much interruption.
Car radiators run the risk of being damaged on the road. Stones or other surface debris can be sucked into a radiator casing, which can damage to the soft aluminium grill inside. Coolant leaks can follow, and the engine could overheat. Black pepper from the kitchen is reportedly a temporary solution to stone damage, and there are several types of radiator weld fluids on the market. Adding either of these two products to the radiator fluid should block most holes caused by stone damage, so that a journey can be completed. When attempting a repair of this nature, the driver should let the car sit and cool down for at least 15 minutes before the coolant system is opened.
Some mechanical or electrical failures cannot be fixed on the roadside. These must be towed to a garage. A tow device stored in the boot of the car can save the day, if the RAC or AA cannot respond quickly. Heavy duty tow ropes are cheap, effective, and inexpensive. However, the vehicle being towed must have working brakes. For cars where the brakes have failed, a rigid tow pole can be used to safely recover the vehicle.
One of the biggest problems with roadside maintenance is the danger presented by other vehicles. Large lorries and fast moving cars can endanger anyone trying to deal with a breakdown, especially on motorways. Recovery lights and LED warning signs provide advance notice to oncoming traffic that there is a broken down vehicle.
Purchasing a set of recovery tools can be an important investment, because no matter how good your mechanic is, unforeseen problems can still occur. Fixing problems with tyres can be difficult, messy, and even dangerous, due to other vehicles passing by a high speeds. Some simple tyre remedies are effective at getting any driver out of this type of situation.
Any car that drives on busy roads runs the risk of being hit by road debris, and this can lead to radiator damage. Simple emergency solutions are available to resolve this type of problem, as well.
Some mechanical problems just cannot be fixed on the roadside, no matter how well the driver has prepared. Thus, tools for safe towing can be a great help. Buyers can find towing tools, as well as every other type of recovery tool, on eBay, where shopping is easy, convenient, and can be done from the comfort of home.