How to Choose a Auto Body Shop When You Have Been Involved in an Accident – Valuable Information

When you have had the unfortunate event of being in a automotive collision, the last thing you need is to have a bad experience with an auto body shop not doing their job. A good auto body shop will fix your car back to pre-loss condition, both in appearance and in structural and mechanical integrity. A great auto body shop will almost make you feel like the accident never happened. They should start with customer service better then you get at a good restaurant. They should ask if everyone was OK after the accident, generally, they should be more interested in your needs and concerns then their own profit margins. The sad thing is there are many body shops that are just in it for a quick buck and do not have the customer skills or even the repair skills to do the job you, or your insurance company, is paying for. So how do you weed those shops out?

I have been in this industry for over 25 years in the same area, I have worked in high quality auto body shops large and small, and have owned my own collision and custom shop in Portland Oregon for the last 8 years. In my area there are hundreds of auto body repair shops in a very small area, yet I only know a few I would trust with my vehicles. So for the most part you have to be as informed as you can, and ask a lot of questions.

I am going to give you some information about the industry that will hopefully help to make that informed decision a little easier. First, do not let your insurance company tell you where to have your vehicle repaired, in most cases they have contracts with the shop to save them money in exchange for sending them your vehicle. in this case the insurance company saves money, the shop gets the work but has to cut corners to keep the cost down for the insurance company. And you, the one that pays the insurance company all those inflated premiums, and pays the body shop your deductible gets a substandard repair. The insurance company may say “if you don’t take the job to our repair shop we can’t guaranty the work”, the fact is any and all good auto body shops guaranty their work for as long as you own your car, if they don’t, go somewhere else.

Next thing to do is be sure to question the person who is estimating your damage, smaller shop owners will usually take care of you personally, and in most cases, actually be involved in the repair process. In most of the larger or chain shops the person writing the estimate on how to fix your vehicle is a salesperson, usually having absolutely no experience repairing cars, not to say that the techs working at that shop wont fix your car correctly, but they may just not feel like rewriting the estimate the way it should of been written to begin with. Just be aware and ask the questions. Also small shops may not have all the fancy lasers and computer operated equipment of a large shop, Then again lasers and computers don’t fix cars in most cases they are sales tools and rarely used. Even a frame rack although necessary is nothing more then a few well placed trees, they don’t fix cars, the tech is the most important part of the repair.

Ask if the body shop is on any insurance programs or DRP,(direct repair programs) if they are ask why? the only reason I know why a auto body shop would agree to be on a DRP would be to get work that they couldn’t get on their own. Again this does not mean just because they have a DRP they are not a great shop, but if they have 20 DRP’s then I would be a little concerned? Ask them to explain.

And by far the best resource for finding a good body shop is word of mouth, a friend that’s had work done and is happy to let you know about the auto body shop he had good luck with is a good sign they were treated well. If you have no friends or coworkers that have had resent repairs, you can try the local automotive paint supply stores in the area, they visit shops large and small every day and may be able to help you out.

For information on a body shop in Santa Ana click here.

High Performance Superchargers

When it comes to high performance engine upgrades, the goal is to get as much power as possible from the engine while at the same time maintaining or increasing the efficiency of the engine. One upgrade that will boost the engine’s output is a supercharger. Superchargers are basically air compressors that force compressed oxygen into the air intake of a combustion engine. The added oxygen burns more fuel per engine cycle which in turn increases the output power. Superchargers are powered mechanically by the engine’s crankshaft via a belt, gear, chain, or shaft or by axial or radial gas turbines. There are two main types of superchargers that are added to high performance engines; positive displacement and dynamic.

The difference between the two types of superchargers is in the method of air compression. The first type is positive displacement. Positive displacement superchargers deliver pressure at a constant, almost fixed rate at all speeds and are normally mechanically powered. The air is divided within the supercharger and deposited bit by bit into the engine. Positive displacement superchargers have four main types of pumps; Roots, Lysholm twin-screw, sliding vane, and scroll-type supercharger or G-Lader. The pumps break down further into external and internal compression pumps.

Roots superchargers have external compression pumps. These pumps allow the pressure in the intake manifold to overcome the pressure coming from the supercharger which causes pressure to backflow into the supercharger. The backflow pressure is what compresses the gas power. These pumps are not as efficient as internal compression but are efficient in moving air at low pressure differentials.

The other types of positive displacement pumps use internal compression to some extent. Internal compression pumps compress the air within the supercharger and deposit it into the engine smoothly at a fixed compression ratio. The compression ratio should favor the supercharger because if the boost pressure of the engine exceeds the compression pressure of the supercharger, backflow will occur that takes away from the efficiency of the engine. Internal compression superchargers should match or exceed the pressure of the engine for maximum efficiency.

The other type of superchargers is dynamic compressors. Unlike positive displacement superchargers, dynamic compressors deliver higher pressure at higher speeds and are normally powered by gas turbines. They excite the air to a high rate and exchange the speed with the engine for air pressure. Therefore, the more pressure within the engine, the more air velocity the supercharger will produce to exchange with the engine.

Superchargers and turbochargers both work to increase the power output of an engine but are powered differently. The main difference is that superchargers are powered directly by the engine while turbochargers are powered by the exhaust from the engine. Turbochargers can gain more power and higher fuel efficiency than superchargers but superchargers have higher throttle response and can reach top speeds faster. This is because turbochargers feed off of the exhaust which is not strong enough at first to power a turbocharger until it reaches a high RPM. When the exhaust is strong enough to start the turbocharger, the boost causes even more exhaust to give the turbocharger more power, causing a sudden surge in speed and power output after a slow start. Turbochargers do not apply boost in proportion to the RPM like superchargers.

Adding a supercharger to a high performance engine is a good way to boost its output power. The engine- driven nature of the supercharger allows it to reach top speed faster and more smoothly than a turbocharger. Superchargers also work more efficiently when they have a higher pressure ratio than the engine. Talk to an aftermarket automotive technician about the best way to upgrade your high performance engine with a supercharger.

For information on supercharger whine click here.

Everything You Want to Know About Superchargers

A supercharger is basically a large pump that compresses and forces air into your vehicles engine to create extra horsepower. Because they can create reliable horsepower easily and affordably, they’re not only becoming popular choices for the aftermarket crowd, but also on OEM applications. We decided to find out where Superchargers came from, how they work, what types are available, and what type is right for you.

The beginning of Superchargers date back to 1860 when an Indiana man named Mr. Francis Roots created a twin-rotor industrial “air-mover”. This is where the roots style Superchargers we see today all started. Shortly after that a German engineer named Kriggr invented twin rotating shafts that compressed and pumped air. This is the same basic technology that can be found under the hood of many of today’s cars, known as the Twin-Screw Supercharger. But it wasn’t until 1900 when Gottlieb Daimler (sound familiar?) was issued a patent for a pump that would help move increased amounts of air and fuel into a vehicles cylinders. Although it didn’t go by it’s modern name at the time, this is what many consider to be the birth of the automotive Supercharger. Shortly after that, Superchargers started appearing on race cars. Lee Chadwick was one of the first American racers to use a centrifugal Supercharger in competitive racing with successful results. World War I military aircraft then used Superchargers to overcome the lack of horsepower at high altitudes. By 1921 Mercedes was manufacturing Supercharged cars and the Supercharger era had begun.

At a very high level, there are three types of Supercharger: Mechanically Driven, pressure-wave, and exhaust driven. The pressure-wave Supercharger is rarely ever used in the automotive world so we’re going to leave that out of this conversation. The ever popular exhaust driven Supercharger, also known as the TurboCharger, is becoming more commonly used in today’s high performance market place. Since most people today place this type of SuperCharger in it’s own category, we’re also going to leave that out for now and focus on the Mechanically driven versions for today. These are the blowers we think of when we hear the term Supercharger. They can also be broken down into different categories: roots, twin-screw, and centrifugal. They all have their advantages and disadvantages, and hopefully after you read this article, you can decide which one works best for you.

In contrast to TurboChargers which run of exiting exhaust gasses, Superchargers are mounted to the engine and are driven by a pulley that runs off the crank. Air comes into the Supercharger and is then compressed before being discharged into the engine’s intake. This raises the density of the air charge before it enters the cylinders. As the RPM’s rise and the crank begins to spin faster, so does the Supercharger’s impellers, forcing more air into the engine and creating Boost. Boost is created when air is being forced into the engine rather than being pulled into the intake and is measured by PSI (pounds per square inch). The more boost being created, the more dense the air charge in the engine’s combustion chamber, allowing the engine to burn more fuel, which results in more horsepower. If a car is producing 6 pounds of boost, it means it’s making 6 additional pounds of pressure over the atmospheric pressure at that elevation. Atmospheric pressure is 14.7 psi at sea level. As many of you are aware, cars perform their best around sea level in contrast to high elevations. This is because the air starts to thin out the higher you go and it becomes less densely packed with molecules. Superchargers provide power only under full throttle and therefor do not effect the engines reliability under normal driving conditions.

One problem with Superchargers is that because they spin at such a high rate of speed, they also produce a lot of heat. Some company’s overcame this obstacle by tapping into the vehicles oil pan to lubricate the gears inside the head unit of the Supercharger to minimize heat and friction. Others use internal belts or self contained head units where the oil never needs to be changed. The air itself also becomes hot because you are condensing it. Intercoolers are often used to cool the air and create a more densely packed air charge. An intercooler is much like a cars radiator. Two common types of intercoolers are Air-To-Air, which uses outside air to cool the air that just passed through the Supercharger, and Air-To-Water, which forces the air through a heat exchanger that is cooled by water. Intercooler are not always needed, but are usually found on applications that produce higher levels of boost.

Another term you’ll commonly hear among Supercharger conversations is the Bypass Valve. When a Supercharger is trying to force air into the engine, but the throttle shaft is closed, a situation called Compressor Surge is created. This can occur during deceleration or when the driver is between gears. When the Supercharger is trying to force the air into a closed throttle body, and the pressure inside the throttle body is greater than the pressure created by the Supercharger, the air tries to force itself backwards into the compressor. When this happens, the pressure inside the throttle body is released and the compressor forces the air back through the Supercharger and then back into the throttle body again, creating a loop. This is where a Bypass valve comes into play. It’s actuated by the vacuum from the intake, and then releases the excess pressure either into the atmosphere (blowoff valve) or back through the compressor.

Most cars today don’t come with a fuel system that will handle the power produced by a Supercharger. More air means more fuel – so you’ll need to make sure you have an adequate fuel system before bolting on one of these. Your ignition system is another area that should be taken into consideration. Ignition timing can be advanced or retarded causing the spark to fire earlier or later. Many Supercharger kits retard the timing to avoid detonation. This reduces maximum cylinder pressures and temperatures, and moves away from the detonation threshold. On some of the more recent computer controlled vehicles, a Dyno-Tune by a professional tuner may be necessary to have your car run correctly.

The majority of Superchargers sold today are centrifugal Superchargers. These are internal-compression Superchargers which means they create the boost (compress the air) inside the head unit before forcing it into the engine’s intake. Their impellers are spun by an external pulley that is typically driven from the accessory belt. This allows you to change the pulley size and control the speed at which the Superchargers impellers spin. By changing to a smaller pulley, you’re essentially adding more boost. One advantage of this style blower is that because it has a limited number of moving parts, they’re typically more reliable than other units. They also produce less heat than other style Superchargers and are capable of producing more boost. The one disadvantage is that it must spin at a high rate of speed to make a significant amount of boost, and therefore only makes power at higher RPM’s. It’s common to start seeing boost at 3000 RPM’s and to have it increase along with the RPM’s. These are great options for non-street cars who don’t typically care about low RPM’s. That’s not to say they aren’t a great option for street driven vehicles as well.

Both the Roots Style and Twin Screw blowers are External Compression Superchargers. Both are also positive displacement Superchargers meaning that it moves a fixed volume of air per rotation. The Roots Style has two counter-rotating lobes that trap incoming air and move it around the outside casing of the lobes before releasing it out the bottom through an outlet port. These blowers are very capable of making large amounts of boost at lower RPM’s and make incredible low to mid range horsepower. The major disadvantage of this style blower is that they create a lot of heat. An intercooler is almost always necessary on a roots setup.

The Twin Screw Supercharger is very similar in appearance to the Roots Style blower. One major difference in their design is that the Twin Screw style has two rotors (screws) that rotate towards each other. The two screws mesh together and draw in air to compress it and force it out into the engine. Due to the fact that the compression occurs inside the Supercharger, it produces far less heat than a roots blower (and not much less than a centrifugal). The tolerances between the two screws are very tight which results in an ability to create boost at a low RPM – much more so than the Roots or Centrifugal. Another advantage this has over the Roots style is that the two screws don’t actually touch each other resulting in virtually no wearing parts to replace. The main disadvantage of this style is that because of it’s internal compression ration, it’s compressing air even when it’s not sending boost into the engine. They do have internal bypass valves to release the pressure but due to the fact that it take energy to create that pressure in the first place, it’s drawing more power from the engine while not under boost in comparison to the other blowers.

For information on supercharger whine click here.

Need to Rent a Car?

There are ample situations when you see yourself stranded in the middle of the road. It could be a car breakdown or missed out train to your station. What comes in handy, as a rescue is an idea of renting a car.

Car rentals are widely known phenomena today. Most of us use car rental services to commute on a daily basis. It could be local or interstate; these service providers have all sorts of facilities to help you reach your destination safely and in a comfortable manner. Most of them have devised standard fare charges basis the kilometers traveled. The rates differ from one vendor to the other depending on the state tax and service tax laws.

Why do you need to rent a car?

Here can be innumerous reasons for you to choose renting a car over driving all by yourself, especially when you are traveling long distances. If you are traveling via road for a holiday, you would rather want to enjoy the scenic beauty around you instead of focusing on the accelerator and the best way to do that is to rent a car and be stress-free.

Car rental companies hire professional drivers that drive safely and well versed with routes besides being well aware of traffic laws. Most service providers also offer traveling insurance against a minimal deposit, which can be claimed in an unfortunate situation like an accident.

Though you can hire a car for a one-way journey, yet it is advised to opt for a to and fro travel as it costs less as compared to the former.

If you are about to travel and are thinking about picking up a rented car, here are a few tips to make it easy for you

You can refer to yellow pages or any such similar guide to get information about the car rental service providers with all the details
It is best to check with at least 4 to 5 car agencies and check details about the kind of cars, the special rates, night charges, availability, coordination with hotels and sightseeing locales, before opting for one
Choose your pick up and drop the destination beforehand. Since different companies have different rules, it is best to get clarification about the charges and policies
Reserve a car that is compact, yet accommodates all the travelers and is easy and comfortable for a journey
No matter which car rental you choose when you need to rent a car, always be sure of reserving the deal with a major credit card so that the payment can be stopped in case of any faulty behavior at their end.

Get the Cheapest Car Rental Deals

When renting a car for a month or other periods of time, it is very important to find the right deals to save as much money on the car rental as possible.

Find the best and cheapest CAR RENTAL DEALS [Https://] here