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Where to Put Windshield Wiper Fluid in Your Car

Wednesday, June 16th, 2021

Your vehicle’s windshield wiper fluid should be checked and maintained frequently, and luckily this task couldn’t be much easier. Here we’ll talk about where to put windshield wiper fluid, how to check it and what kind you should be using.

Why You Should Care — and Check Often

If you live somewhere that’s always sunny and wash your car every week, maybe you don’t ever use your windshield wipers much. For the rest of us, though, dirt, dust and brief rainstorms can be enough to make our vehicles filthy. Even following another vehicle down dusty, muddy or slushy road can have us reaching for the washer function on our windshield wipers year-round.Where to put windshield washer fluid

That kind of frequent use can drain a windshield washer fluid reservoir before you know it, so checking and topping yours off regularly is a smart practice. Windshield washer fluid can easily be taken for granted until your view suddenly becomes obstructed and you can’t clear what’s blocking it, so take care to avoid potentially dangerous situations by checking your fluid often.

Where to Put Windshield Wiper Fluid

Automakers figured out quickly that windshield washer fluid reservoirs should be transparent, clearly marked and large. Most hold at least a gallon of fluid, and some are even bigger, especially in vehicles with both front and rear wiper and washers.

As a result, the biggest plastic container of liquid under your hood is usually the windshield washer fluid reservoir. On newer cars, the lid is bright plastic (often blue) with a pictograph of a windshield, a wiper and spraying fluid.

Some reservoirs have a marking for the “fill line” that you shouldn’t go over when you’re refilling. Most newer cars seem to be moving away from that now and relying on common sense. Because the container is clear, you can see when the fluid is getting close to the neck of the opening, at which point you’ll want to stop pouring so you don’t waste any.

What Kind of Windshield Washer Fluid Should You Use?

There are different kinds of windshield washer fluid to consider. If you live or travel in a climate where the temperature drops to near or below freezing, you’ll want one with a low freezing point like 25 degrees below zero. That should keep it from freezing solid in the tank, in the washer lines or on your windshield as soon as it hits the cold glass.

Drivers from warm regions who take their vehicles to cold-weather homes should beware. The old washer fluid may not have anti-freezing properties, and when these formulas suddenly freeze on your windshield, they can turn it nearly opaque and block your view entirely — a scary and dangerous scenario. You can avoid this by using a de-icing washer fluid, which will accelerate the melting of the ice and frost on your windshield.

If you live in an area where insects or tree sap are major issues, there are also windshield washer formulations for removing bug guts and sticky saps.

The bottom line is that your garage should absolutely have a spare gallon or two of windshield washer fluid. On a long road trip, it might also be worth having one in your trunk. Check the level often, and top it off anytime you see it get to a quarter of a tank. Knowing you’ve got plenty of the right kind of washer fluid on hand means having peace of mind with the knowledge that this critical fluid won’t run out when you need it most.

Check out all the oils, chemicals and fluids available on NAPA Online, or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on windshield washer fluid, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

Photos courtesy of Mike Hagerty.

The post Where to Put Windshield Wiper Fluid in Your Car appeared first on NAPA Know How Blog.

How to Fix a Blown Car Fuse

Tuesday, June 15th, 2021

If an electrically powered component in your vehicle suddenly stops working, it’s possible that some troubleshooting and a major repair may be in your future. But before you become too concerned, always remember to check the fuse.

The car fuse is the easiest part of the circuit to check, and many times when something on an electrical circuit stops working out of nowhere, the fuse is the culprit. Here we’ll talk about what a car fuse does and how to check whether one is still intact in your vehicle.

Fuses and CircuitsHow to Fix a Blown Car Fuse

Fuses protect circuits by sacrificing themselves in the event that an electrical system becomes overloaded. Each electrical circuit in your vehicle is designed to handle a precise amount of current to support the components and functions it powers. This current may fluctuate a bit, but in the event of a short or something that causes a large or prolonged current draw, a dangerous situation can develop where the wires become so hot that they can melt and catch on fire.

Fuses are designed to burn out at a certain amperage, opening the circuit so the current is immediately stopped. Unfortunately, this also means that once the fuse is popped, it has to be replaced for the circuit and components to work properly again.

Testing a Fuse

Testing a fuse is straightforward, but you have to know where to look. Make sure your vehicle is completely off. Consult your owner’s manual to find the fuse box location(s). The underside of the fuse box lid or the area around it will likely have a map identifying each fuse/circuit by name.

Use a fuse puller to remove the fuse, or work it out very carefully with a pair of needle-nose pliers. Stay away from simple test lights that connect to ground only and require power from the circuit to check current — these can damage sensitive circuits and even set off airbags. Instead, grab a digital multimeter, plug the black wire into the “comm” port and the red wire into the port with the omega symbol, and set the dial to the omega symbol, checking for ohms, or resistance.

Check that the meter works by touching the leads of the multimeter together. The reading should be “0” in theory, but different devices and wires may give a couple of ohms of resistance, depending on several different factors. Be sure to read the device’s manual to ensure you’re within spec. Once you’ve confirmed that your multimeter is working, hold one lead on each prong of the suspect fuse (or the metal end caps on a glass barrel fuse). The lead order doesn’t matter, so you can touch either lead to either side. If the reading is “OL,” the circuit is open, which means the fuse is blown and it must be replaced. If you get 0 or a number, your fuse is good.

Don’t Blow It

Always replace a bad fuse with another one of the same size and amperage rating. If you select a fuse with too low of an amp rating, it will burn out again during normal operation. Go too high and the circuit won’t be protected — if the system becomes overloaded, the fuse won’t blow and open it up to cut off the flow of electricity. In this case, you risk frying bigger components or starting fires.

Never bypass a fuse with a metal conductor if your new properly rated fuses continue to blow. If this happens, you have a bigger problem that needs to be diagnosed.

Troubleshooting a bad fuse may sound complicated, but if you know what to look for and how to proceed, it’s really quite easy. It’s also an important skill to learn — after all, checking the fuses before tearing the engine apart could mean the difference between a few dollars and hundreds.

Check out all the ignition, electrical and lighting products available on NAPA Online, or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on automotive fuses, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

Photos courtesy of Blair Lampe.

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How Often Should Brake Pads Be Replaced?

Monday, June 14th, 2021

Your vehicle’s brake pads play an important role in the braking system, but unfortunately, they also wear down over time and must eventually be changed. How often should brake pads be replaced? The answer can vary, but being able to identify the warning signs that your pads might be getting low is an important part of brake maintenance and keeping your vehicle safe for the road.

“Braking” It DownHow Often Should Brake Pads be Replaced?

Brake pads are an integral part of a disc brake system. They’re positioned to face the rotor, and when the driver steps on the pedal, brake fluid transfers pressure directly to the pads, squeezing them against the rotor, and stopping it from turning. Since the rotor is attached to the wheel, when it stops turning, the car slows and stops as well.

Brake pads are made of different materials depending on the manufacturer, but they’re always going to be made of a softer material than the rotor. That means when there’s repeated friction between the two surfaces, the brake pads will wear down faster. This friction causes an enormous amount of heat to be generated, and eventually the rotors will have to be resurfaced or replaced as well, but the brake pads will be the first to go.

How Long Do Brake Pads Last?

Not all brake pads are created equal, and their lifespan may be extended or shortened based on several factors, such as what material they’re made of, your driving habits, your typical driving conditions and your maintenance routines.

The general guidance on how often to change brake pads covers a considerable range: 20,000 to 70,000 miles. For a better idea of when exactly to replace your pads, always look to your owner’s manual. From there, keep an eye out for signs of wear. The sound of squealing or the feeling of vibrating when the vehicle comes to a stop are both telltale signs that your pads are low. Many pads have a built in “alarm” that creates a squealing when they get below a certain level, and it shouldn’t be ignored.

A visual inspection is also key. Pads should be replaced when they are below ¼ inch thick. Ignoring the signs and letting your pads wear to the backing not only compromises your safety, but it will also damage your rotors and result in much more costly repairs than simple pad changes.

Pad Habits

There are a few factors that cause pads to wear out faster, and some more in your control than others. Naturally, the more you use them the faster they’ll wear, so folks who drive more often in cities with a stop-and-go rhythm or in hilly regions that require frequent braking on downhill stretches will likely have to get their pads changed more often than people whose vehicles see mostly flat highway usage.

Your habits matter too. You can conserve your pads by avoiding hard braking, keeping junk out of the trunk to reduce the vehicle’s weight, downshifting downhill, and driving at or under the speed limit. Low pads can lead to warped rotors, which can quickly lead to pads becoming worn again — an annoying and potentially dangerous cycle — but keeping up with regular maintenance can help you stay on top of this.

Most often, your brakes will tell you when they’re getting low, so pay attention to them. Make checking your brakes part of your routine maintenance, and always investigate any unusual noises or feelings related to braking.

Check out all the brake parts available on NAPA Online or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations, for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on how often should brake pads be replaced, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

Photos courtesy of Blair Lampe.

The post How Often Should Brake Pads Be Replaced? appeared first on NAPA Know How Blog.

Doubleheader Weekend in Detroit Ends in Frustration for Rossi

Monday, June 14th, 2021

The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix doubleheader weekend brought mixed results for Alexander Rossi, with a top-ten finish in Race 1 and a first-lap, damage-causing incident that took the No. 27 out of contention to win Race 2.

Alexander Rossi Detroit GP NAPA AUTO PARTS 2021

The NTT INDYCAR SERIES made their highly anticipated return to the streets of Belle Isle for the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix doubleheader this past weekend after the event was cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After rounding out the month of May in the NAPA AUTO PARTS machine, Alexander Rossi took to the streets of Belle Isle in the #DrivePink AutoNation livery for the doubleheader weekend.

Alexander Rossi Detroit GP NAPA AUTO PARTS 2021

After a strong qualifying result for Race 1 that saw Rossi just narrowly miss out on the pole position by less than a tenth of a second, the No. 27 Honda rolled off in second for the first race of the doubleheader weekend. Rossi and the team made the strategy call to pit earlier than the majority of the field putting the No. 27 on an alternate strategy. Unfortunately an extended red flag 27 laps into the race made it difficult for the strategy call to play out. Rossi worked his way through the field once the race went green again and ultimately came away with a top-ten finish, taking the checkered flag in seventh.

Alexander Rossi Detroit GP NAPA AUTO PARTS 2021

“The team did a great job with the car. We had one of the fastest cars out there. We were a bit unlucky with the first red flag,” said Rossi. “It kind of put us toward the back, which was the same for a lot of guys. That’s just the nature of INDYCAR sometimes. We just struggled again to get it done in pit lane and I had to re-pass the same cars. I came into pit lane in front of Pato (O’Ward), came out two spots behind him and he finished third.”

Alexander Rossi Detroit GP NAPA AUTO PARTS 2021

Another strong qualifying result on Sunday for the No. 27 allowed Rossi to take the green flag for Race 2 in seventh, but wheel-to-wheel contact on the first lap in the first turn of the race would ultimately set the tone for Rossi’s second race of the weekend. Rossi was called in for a front-wing change and even with a quick team effort to make the repairs, the No. 27 couldn’t make up the ground that was lost due to the damage. Rossi would take the checkered flag to round out the weekend in 13th.

Alexander Rossi Detroit GP NAPA AUTO PARTS 2021

“We had a good start, but then we had wheel-to-wheel contact that somehow broke the front wing,” said Rossi. “After that our race was over.”

With the doubleheader on the streets of Belle Isle complete, Rossi and the No. 27 team shifts their focus to Road America – the longest track on the NTT INDYCAR SERIES schedule. Preparation for the 55-lap event begins with practice on Friday, June 18, and the REV Group Grand Prix will go green on Sunday, June 20 at 12 p.m. on NBC Sports Network.

Start / Finish:
Race 1: 2 / 7
Race 2: 7 / 13
Points Earned:
Race 1: 27
Race 2: 17
Points Standing / Total: 14th / 145 pts.

Next Race: June 20, REV Group Grand Prix at IMS
How to Watch or Listen: NBC Sports Network, PeacockTV and INDYCAR RADIO Sirius 205

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Capps Suffers Rare First-Round Fire in Epping

Monday, June 14th, 2021

Ron Capps and the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Funny Car team were solid during qualifying at the NHRA New England Nationals, posting the third-quickest run of Q2 followed by the quickest run of Q3 to earn four bonus points and the No. 2 starting position. The NAPA team had finished as the runner-up at the previous race, and were looking to take it one step further and seal-the-deal in Epping, N.H., but a round-one explosion thwarted their chances at hoisting the New England Dragway Wally trophy.

Ron Capps NAPA AUTO PARTS NHRA New England Nats 2021

The two-time Epping winner faced No. 13 qualifier Terry Haddock in the first round. Capps and the NAPA AUTO PARTS team felt confident in their ability to defeat Haddock which would have positioned Capps to have a Bye into the semifinals based on the way the Epping ladder was set up. Capps nabbed the starting line advantage over his opponent but started hazing the tires near halftrack. The veteran wheelman finessed the pedal, attempting to get his machine to recover, but it soon gave way to a fiery explosion. Capps maneuvered his machine to a stop and was able to safely exit his vehicle, while Haddock claimed the upset win.

Ron Capps NAPA AUTO PARTS NHRA New England Nats 2021

“Haddock has been running well and we knew we couldn’t take them lightly, so we definitely were prepared to lay down a good number,” said Capps, recounting his wild round-one match-up. “‘Guido’ (crew chief Dean Antonelli) came on the radio and said ‘we need to make sure we win this round’ because we knew there was a Bye into the semis and you can’t take that for granted. The car was driving fine, it was smooth, it didn’t seem out of control, and all of a sudden, the tires came loose. I waited and gave it a pedal and then the car blew up and caught fire. I didn’t even realize it at that point because I was trying to stay on it and get ahead of Haddock, and then just before the finish line I saw him drive by. By then, my legs started to feel really hot so I just wanted to get the car stopped and get out of there. The fire burned up my suit pretty badly, so I’ve got to give credit to my Impact firesuit. It protected my legs, and other than a little soreness, I’m alright. The suit did what it was supposed to do.

Ron Capps NAPA AUTO PARTS NHRA New England Nats 2021

“The whole situation is a bummer because if we would’ve won that round, we would’ve had an automatic Bye to the semis, so it’s just disappointing to give up rounds like that. But, we’ll comb through all of the data, figure out why it smoked the tires and head to Norwalk.”

Start / Finish: Qualified No. 2 / Defeated by Terry Haddock in round one
Points Earned: 41
2021 NHRA Camping World Series Points Standing / Total: 6th / 372 pts.

Next Race: June 25-27, Norwalk, Ohio NHRA Nationals
How to Watch or Listen: FS1; NHRA.TV

NAPA Racing:@NAPARacing
Ron Capps: @RonCapps28
Don Schumacher Racing:@ShoeRacing

 

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An Energy-Efficient Garage Is Key

Sunday, June 13th, 2021

The garage is a place most people don’t think about much longer than it takes to park the car. But a well-built and maintained energy-efficient garage can have a serious impact on your utility bill and energy consumption. There are a few ways to make sure your garage isn’t using up too much power — mix and match the upgrades that fit your needs.

What’s on the Inside Counts

Let’s start off talking about basic energy consumption. When you turn on lights or use fans and heaters, you use energy. One easy way to lessen this usage is to swap out all your lighting for LEDs. These bulbs are brighter, last longer and are far cheaper to run than halogens and fluorescent lights. The initial investment costs more, but over their lifespan LEDs more than make up for it.

The next consideration is where the energy to run lights and appliances is coming from. If you have a garage that is also used as a shop and therefore needs lots of power, it’s best to use the same electricity source as the rest of the house. However, if you’ve just got lighting or small appliances, like fans that don’t use too much power, you can convert your energy source to solar.

Climate ControlHow an Energy Efficient Garage is Key to Saving Big

Maybe you spend quality time in your garage during all seasons and have heavier needs for things like keeping cool or warm, depending. As a heating solution, once again solar comes to the rescue, with passive solar heating options on the market. Heck, you could even DIY.

When trying to stay cool, the key is keeping the space open and air circulating. A combination of open doors and a shop fan will use much less energy than an air conditioner. Ceiling fans aren’t just for the living room and they don’t take up precious floor space.

For those who live in an area with relatively low humidity, a good half-way step to keeping cool efficiently is an evaporative cooler. Sometimes called a “swamp cooler” these units use a process of evaporating water to cool the air. The trade-off is that humidity is added to the air in the process, so your local weather may guide your decision.

Keeping Your Cool

But, let’s say you do have an A/C or heater and are worried about maintaining a hospitable temperature in extreme weather. Garages are notoriously energy inefficient, mostly because their construction allows easy heat transfer and escape.

To solve this, you have to insulate. One option is installing a new garage door, but there are also insulation kits on the market that you can install on your existing door. And don’t forget about the walls, ceiling and floor, or that newly insulated door is all for nothing. Depending on when and how your house was built, garage walls might be very thin, a true enemy of energy efficiency. Insulation solutions range from small jobs like a layer of concrete sealant, weather stripping, draft sealers and proper caulking to bigger ones that involve getting insulation between layers of drywall. Don’t forget: A poorly insulated garage can easily affect the amount of energy needed to heat or cool your house if that garage is directly connected to it.

In the end, although there might be some extra expenses upfront, you’ll save a ton by not letting all that energy go to waste.

Check out all the tools & equipment available on NAPA Online or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on an energy-efficient garage, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

Photo courtesy of Blair Lampe.

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Know How Notes – Learn The Different Types Of Ball Joint Tools

Saturday, June 12th, 2021

There is a saying that goes “Use the right tool for the right job”, and nowhere does that apply more than to the world of automotive mechanics. Using the wrong tool can not only make the job harder, but can create an unsafe condition and ruin your parts. Sometimes there are several tools available for one task, making it hard to figure out which is the better choice. The ball joints on your suspension is certainly one of those areas.

We’re going to talk about four common types of ball joint tools that can be used to separate the ball joint from the spindle. Some of these tools are very simple, others are more complicated, and which one you use often depends on the task at hand. There are also a few specialty ball joint tools that are manufacturer specific, but we’ll get into those another time.

Hammer

You might think it sounds crazy, using a hammer to knock a ball joint out, but it isn’t. This should be the first method you try on any newer vehicle (10 or so years on the road). The trick here is to use the hammer correctly. You DO NOT hit the stud of the joint, rather you tap the side of the spindle (where the stud slides through) with the suspension loose. If the joint is reusable, then this will save it. In most cases, the stud will simply pop out of the spindle, saving you some headaches. It depends on the age of the joint, how long it has been installed, and how clean the suspension is. The longer the joint has been in use, the more likely it is for the stud to have seized in the taper.

Please note – If the suspension has pressure from a coil spring, then this is not the preferred method.

Although this image shows a tie rod end, the process is the same. Most newer vehicles do not need an actual tool to remove the joint, in many cases, a few taps with a 3 pound hammer will shock the joint from the taper. Don't beat on it, just a few sharp taps. If that doesn't do it, get a tool.
Although this image shows a tie rod end, the process is the same. Most newer vehicles do not need an actual tool to remove the joint, in many cases, a few taps with a 3 pound hammer will shock the joint from the taper. Don’t beat on it, just a few sharp taps. If that doesn’t do it, get a tool.

Pickle Fork

The most commonly known tool for separating ball joints is the pickle fork. What is essentially a long two-prong wedge, the pickle fork is also known as a part destroyer. Do not use a pickle fork on a reusable part. If you are removing the joint in order to replace or service something else, the pickle fork will only cost you more money. The reason is that you can’t save the dust boots, a fork will always rip them. If you are replacing the joint, then it really won’t matter. To use a pickle fork, simply slide it between the spindle and the control arm as tight as you can and then hit the free end with a hammer. This drives the wedge between the two points and forces the joint out of the taper.

Just like it sounds, a pickle fork looks like a two-prong fork. You hit it with a hammer.
Just like it sounds, a pickle fork looks like a two-prong fork. You hit it with a hammer.

 

When using the pickle fork, the tines go between the boot and the spindle. These will destroy the boot, so be aware.
When using the pickle fork, the tines go between the boot and the spindle. These will destroy the boot, so be aware.

Simple Claw-Type Press

The next type of tool is a press. This is a one-piece press that has a cast or forged two-prong claw and a threaded stud in the center. More commonly used for tie-rod joints, these can be used on ball joints. They work if the joint is not seized too bad. Cheap versions tend to not fit between the spindle and the ball joint head, and they may spread apart if too much pressure is required. Another potential pitfall is damaging the threads for the castle nut on the joint stud. To avoid this, thread the castle nut on upside down (with the split side towards the joint), and then apply the press. This keeps the head of the stud centered. This can be used in conjunction with the hammer method to put a little pressure on the joint stud as well.

The basic claw press works for most ball joints and tie rod ends. There are multiple sizes as well.
The basic claw press works for most ball joints and tie rod ends. There are multiple sizes as well.

 

It is a good idea to put the castle nut on the stud (upside down) to keep the press stud square, otherwise, you can mess up the threads.
It is a good idea to put the castle nut on the stud (upside down) to keep the press stud square, otherwise, you can mess up the threads.

Ball Joint Press

The professional tool is the ball joint press. This is a more complicated version of the claw press. This tool uses a clamshell and adapters to ensure a clean and safe removal of the ball joint from the control arm. The joint will also remain reusable. The problem with this type of tool is that they are expensive; they typically cost a couple of hundred or more to get all the adapters. Just keep in mind that you will need to think ahead before you start your project if you need this tool.

The full ball joint press is the most efficient way to get stubborn joints removed. These are pricey, which is why most folks rent or borrow them.
The full ball joint press is the most efficient way to get stubborn joints removed. These are pricey, which is why most folks rent or borrow them.

As with any suspension work, take great care to ensure the vehicle is safely lifted off the ground, use jack stands and NEVER work under a raised vehicle with just a jack supporting the weight. When it comes to coil springs, safety is paramount, never release the tension on a coil spring without taking the proper safety precautions first. If you have any doubts, contact your local NAPA AutoCare Center and let the pros handle it.

Check out all the tools & equipment available on NAPA Online or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on ball joint tools, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

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Towing Safety: Using a Trailer Breakaway Switch

Friday, June 11th, 2021

A hitch on the back of a vehicle.

It’s important to know about towing safety before you hook up a trailer to the back of your vehicle. In addition to ensuring that your trailer is properly secured and that you’re not exceeding the weight limit, consider getting a trailer breakaway switch to help keep your trailer under control.

Here’s what a trailer breakaway switch does and why you might want to use one next time you hitch up your trailer.

What Is a Trailer Break Away Switch?

A trailer breakaway switch is your fail-safe if your trailer manages to become disconnected from your vehicle while you’re driving. Whether the hitch wasn’t secure and slips loose, the ball mount snaps, or the safety chains break, the trailer breakaway switch will automatically activate the electric brakes on your trailer so that it comes to a safe stop.

Installation

You must have electric brakes on your trailer to use a breakaway switch. If you do, start by connecting the switch to the battery in the battery case located at the front of your trailer. The 12-volt battery in this case will have two wires if it charges via an external charger or three wires if it charges directly through your vehicle. The switch will end up mounted between the battery and the trailer.

What About the Pin and Cable?

There will also be a pin attached to a breakaway cable that’s roughly 4-feet long. The pin needs to be inserted into the switch, while the wire cable needs to be attached to your vehicle — there should be a hole or ring by your trailer hitch assembly that you can clip into. If your trailer disconnects while you’re driving, the car will pull the pin out, and the switch will know that the trailer has become disconnected. Once this happens, the electric brakes on your trailer will be activated.

What Happens When It Engages?

When the breakaway switch is triggered, the electric brakes on your trailer will immediately engage and bring the trailer to a stop. Once this happens, you’ll need to maneuver the trailer to a safe place off the road, chock the tires to keep the trailer from rolling away and ensure that whatever cargo you’re carrying is safe.

Whether you’re hauling live animals or just typical cargo, a trailer breakaway switch makes sure your trailer doesn’t roll away into traffic or flip over onto its side. It’s a simple fix for what can be a dangerous towing safety issue.

Check out all the trailering products available on NAPA Online, or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information about how to safely tow a trailer, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

Photo courtesy Flickr.

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Ford Unveils 2022 Maverick – All New Hybrid Compact Truck

Thursday, June 10th, 2021

Just weeks after announcing the new 2022 F-150 Lightning all-electric pickup, Ford has announced an all-new entry in the compact truck market. The 2022 Maverick slots underneath the Ranger in size and is aimed at buyers who need the capability of a truck but not the large size. At one time small trucks were a common sight on U.S. roadways, but over time manufacturers bumped up even small trucks to what was once considered nearly full-size a few decades ago. With the Maverick, Ford recognizes that there is a small truck market niche that needs to be filled.

2022 Maverick size comparison

Construction

Like the Honda Ridgeline, the Maverick is a unibody truck. Without a traditional separate frame, Ford could further reduce weight while putting strength into the unibody where necessary. The Maverick is also front wheel drive in standard configuration, with AWD as an option. Looking back in Ford truck history, the first gen Ranger SuperCab (which many consider a mini truck) measured roughly 194″ long and 67″ wide. The Maverick comes in at 200″ long and 73″ wide, just a bit larger than the old Ranger. Given the much higher modern safety standards while still seating five, the diminutive Maverick packs a lot in a rather small space. With this small size comes an impressive fuel-sipping estimated 40 miles-per-gallon city EPA rating, likely thanks to the standard hybrid drivetrain. The Maverick should appeal to those who do a lot of city driving but may have never considered owning a truck due to the usual large size.

Cargo Handling

Despite the small size Maverick touts an impressive 1,500 pound payload capacity. In standard configuration towing is rated at 2,000 pounds, but checking the “4k Tow Package” option box doubles the rating to 4,000 pounds. The “4k Tow Package” is only available with the EcoBoost engine drivetrain. Out back the FLEXBED™ truck bed is designed as a “jack of all trades” space. Ford includes various slots, tie-downs, D-rings, and even threaded holes that drivers can use in any combination to secure cargo. Ford also has bolt-in cargo management solutions like side-mounted bins. With tailgate up the bed measures 4.5-feet long, but dropping the tailgate and using the optional bed extender brings bed length to 6-feet. Like many trucks on the market today, the Maverick can also be outfitted with 110-volt plugs in the bed.

Technology

Ford isn’t skimping on the driver-assist technology with its Co-Pilot360™ system on the Maverick. Standard safety tech includes auto high-beams, rear-view camera, pre-collision assist with automatic emergency braking, and forward collision warning with dynamic brake support. Optional safety tech includes cross-traffic alert, lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, and even evasive steering assist. On the entertainment front an 8″ touchscreen infotainment system is standard, including Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ compatibility.

For now the 2022 Ford Maverick is available to reserve with a predicted Fall 2021 delivery date. Stay tuned for a more in-depth real-world review once press vehicles are accessible to the media.

 

Click to view slideshow.

2022 Maverick SuperCrew Specifications:

Drivetrain – Standard (PHEV)

  • Engine Type: Atkinson cycle DOHC I-4
  • Engine Displacement: 2.5 liters
  • Engine Horsepower: 162@ 5,600 rpm
  • Engine Torque: 155 lb.-ft. @ 4,000 rp
  • Transmission: PowerSplit: Electronic continuously variable transmission
  • Final Drive Ratio: 2.91:1
  • Hybrid Motor Type: Permanent magnet electric traction
  • Motor Peak Output: 94kW
  • Motor Peak Torque Output: 173 lb.-ft.

Drivetrain – Optional

  • Engine Type: EcoBoost DOHC I-4
  • Engine Displacement: 2.0 liters
  • Engine Horsepower: 250@ 5,500 rpm
  • Engine Torque: 277lb.-ft. @ 3,000 rp
  • Transmission: 8-speed automatic
  • Final Drive Ratio: 3.63:1 standard/3.81:1 with 4K Trailer Tow Package

Dimensions:

  • Length: 199.7”
  • Width: 72.6”
  • Height: 68.7”
  • Bed Length: 54.4”

Cargo Capacity:

  • Cargo box: 33.3 cu. ft.
  •  Payload (maximum): 1,500lbs.

Towing Capacity:

  • Standard: 2,000 lbs.
  • EcoBoost with 4K Tow Package: 4,000lbs.

Wheels (standard):

  • 17-in. steel wheel painted Sparkle Silver (XL)
  • 17-in. painted aluminum wheel (XLT)
  • 18-in. bright aluminum wheel (Lariat)

Wheels (optional):

  • 17-in. aluminum wheel (available on XL and XLT)
  • 17-in. unique aluminum wheel (included in FX4 Off-Road Package on XLT and Lariat)
  • 18-in. black painted wheel (Lariat)

Brakes

  • Front: Disc (with additional regenerative braking system on hybrid model)
  • Rear: Disc (with additional regenerative braking system on hybrid model)

Interior

  • Head room: 40.3″ front / 39.6″ rear
  • Leg room (max.) : 42.8″ front / 35.9″ rear
  • Hip room: 55.4″ front / 54.1″ rear
  • Shoulder room: 57.3″ front / 55.6″ rear
  • Seating Capacity: 5

Base Prices

  • 2022 Maverick XL Hybrid- $19,995
  • 2022 Maverick XL EcoBoost- $19,995
  • 2022 Maverick XLT Hybrid – $22,280
  • 2022 Maverick XLT EcoBoost- $23,365
  • 2022 Maverick Lariat Hybrid – $25,490
  • 2022 Maverick Lariat EcoBoost- $26,575

Check out all the maintenance parts available on NAPA online or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on the 2022 Maverick, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

Photos courtesy Ford Motor Company.

The post Ford Unveils 2022 Maverick – All New Hybrid Compact Truck appeared first on NAPA Know How Blog.

Father’s Day 2021 Gift Ideas For The DIY Dad

Wednesday, June 9th, 2021

It seems like a decade since Father’s Day 2020, but June has come around again. And in that time it seems like everyone has jumped on the DIY wagon, which is great! So it comes as no surprise that our favorite Father’s Day 2021 gift ideas are sure to help Dad get things done around the house or on the go.

Maxi Trac Vehicle Awning

 Maxi Trac Vehicle Awning 8 ft

Whether beachside, trackside, cheering from the sidelines, or just taking a break roadside this portable awning from Maxi Trac is your perfect companion to wherever your adventures take you. Easy to install and measuring a substantial 2.5 by 2.5 meters, this car awning features heavy duty 220GSM ripstop polyester fabric to effectively shield you from wind, rain and sun whilst offering UV50+ protection. Equipped with anodized alloy poles and cast alloy knuckle hinges for extra strength these awnings are a must have for enjoying the great outdoors.

Flexzilla® Garage Washdown Kit

FLEXZILLA GARAGE KIT

The Flexzilla® Garage Washdown Kit includes everything you need to eliminate frustration when switching out hoses in the shop. Designed to simplify the cleaning process, this kit includes a centralized 2-Way Hose Splitter supporting multiple users from a single spigot. The Water Hose featuring SwivelGrip™ allows you to wash down vehicles, equipment and floors, up to 40 feet away. Plus, the 5 ft. Bucket Hose keeps water accessible at the spigot to fill buckets, clean off boots, or simply wash your hands. Flexzilla hoses feature extreme all-weather flexibility that allows them to lie flat and they won’t kink under pressure. The Flexzilla Garage Washdown Kit is ideal for indoor and outdoor use.

High Speed 3/8 in. Ratchet Kit

MILWAUKEE® M12 FUEL™ 3/8 in. High Speed Ratchet Kit

The MILWAUKEE® M12 FUEL™ 3/8 in. High Speed Ratchet Kit is part of the latest addition to Milwaukee’s best-in-class lineup of ratchets. This cordless ratchet kit provides the fastest speed while installing and removing fasteners. The most compact head size in its class offers more access in tight spaces. A steel yoke housing and POWERSTATE™ Brushless Motor deliver the superior durability expected from Milwaukee. The M12 FUEL™ High Speed Ratchets are an ideal addition to any technician tool chest, allowing professionals to be more productive than any other battery-powered ratchet.

24-in-1 Ratcheting Screwdriver

24-in-1 Ratcheting screwdriver set

Evercraft’s 24-in-1 ratcheting screwdriver set features a plug-pull tip and an auto-load design that keeps the right bit at hand. Internal bit storage holds up to six bits at a time, and can be swapped out for different bit types and sizes. Swapping out bits is quick and easy, saving time on the job. The handy plastic rack keeps things organized and is easy to carry & store. Bits are made of hardened chrome-vanadium steel for maximum wear resistance and durability.

Screwdriver Set with Storage Rack

Screwdriver Set

Dad can never have enough screwdrivers, especially when they are well organized like this screwdriver set. It includes a huge assortment of driver bits, multiple sizes of slotted and Phillips head screwdrivers, previsions screwdrivers, offset screwdrivers, even nut drivers. This set can handle pretty much any job around the garage or house. Plus the compact storage rack keeps everything organized between projects.

Rechargeable Utility Light

rechargeable work lamp

This rechargeable work light has a hidden USB charging plug, so there is no need for a separate cable. Aluminum alloy construction is lightweight and durable. Can be used as a normal flashlight, or switch to the side mounted LED for a broader work light. Perfect for camping, hiking, fishing,  garage, or any other place Dad needs a light.

Check out all the tools & equipment available on NAPA Online or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on Father’s Day gift ideas for the DIY Dad, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

Photo courtesy of Flickr.

The post Father’s Day 2021 Gift Ideas For The DIY Dad appeared first on NAPA Know How Blog.