Will You Trust Autonomous Vehicles?

autonomous vehicles drivingJaguar Land Rover has just announced its latest research project targeted at making autonomous vehicles pleasant to ride in. Right now, companies are interested in the safety aspects of autonomous cars; having a vehicle that will stay in its lane, break for stop signs at the appropriate times and handle the approach of emergency vehicles with ease. But we have yet to consider how people will feel sitting in a vehicle that drives like a machine and not a human.

Over the course of the next three years, a program called “Move UK” will be implemented, allowing Jaguar to monitor driver reactions to a wide variety of obstacles, including bad weather and heavy traffic, to teach autonomous vehicles how to properly handle them. Not only will this research help to create a more trustworthy, driver friendly vehicle, but it will also be used in the development of insurance policies for self-driving cars.

While the most tech-savvy, early adopters will jump at the chance of getting behind the wheel of an autonomous vehicle, many more drivers are wary about the idea of letting their car drive itself – and who can blame them? Autonomous cars are something out of sci-fi books and futuristic movies, non-existent in real life.

According to a study performed by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, 43.8 percent of drivers do not prefer any type of autonomous vehicle and 40.6 percent of drivers prefer partially self-driving cars. With more than 80 percent of drivers uninterested in getting behind the wheel of a fully-autonomous vehicle, Jaguar’s research could be a crucial piece of the success of autonomous vehicles in the years to come.

Even when vehicles can drive themselves, there will still be muddy footprints in the back seat, salt stains throughout the winter and sap on the roof, which is why PermaPlate offers a wide range of protection products to keep your vehicle looking like new.

Head Back to the Future with a Brand New DeLorean

The DeLorean Motor Company has just announced its biggest news since Doc Brown built a flux capacitor in the 1985 movie, “Back to the Future”. The company, which has been refurbishing old DeLorean vehicles since 1995, will soon be building the first new DeLorean cars since 1982.

Built from leftover factory parts, as well as some pieces that have been recreated from original blueprints, the new DeLoreans are able to be built thanks to a recent manufacturing bill approved by the federal government. This bill exempts small volume car manufacturers from safety requirements if they are building replica vehicles; ones that resemble a car originally produced more than 25 years ago.

Currently, the company is sorting through its engine options, since the recently passed low-volume production law does not exempt them from meeting current emissions requirements. With a third-party engine installed, these reproduction DeLoreans will have a lot more horsepower than their 1980-something counterparts – 300 or 400 horsepower instead of the original 130.

DeLorean Motor Company CEO Stephen Wynne expects new vehicles to be available early in 2017, estimating that there are enough supplies available to build at least 300 cars.

If you are interested in driving the iconic gull-winged DMC-12, it’s time to start saving up. New vehicles are expected to cost just under $100,000, while refurbished vehicles run between $45,000 and $55,000.

Regardless of if you are interested in purchasing a cult-classic car like the DeLorean, an up-and-coming semi-autonomous vehicle or your everyday sedan, PermaPlate offers protection plans that will keep your vehicle driving smooth and looking like new.

Not Sure if a Minivan is Right for You and Your Growing Family?

unpacking a minivanEarlier this month, Chrysler unveiled the Pacifica, a minivan that will replace the Chrysler Town & Country and the Dodge Grand Caravan in 2017. Although this vehicle has a sleeker design than its predecessors, we aren’t sold on the idea that the minivan will become cool. But for the growing family, there are plenty of benefits to driving this practical and roomy vehicle. Known for its high safety ratings and ability to move almost anything, the minivan isn’t an option to discredit while shopping for a vehicle that your whole family will enjoy.

Interior Space

For families with three or more children, third row seating is a must. With plenty of space for your kids, their friends and Fido, driving a minivan prevents you from hearing the constant complaints from the little ones squished together in the back seat. Yes, someone will still make it their mission to bother someone else, but it is much easier to separate the troublemakers when driving a minivan than it is while driving a two or four door sedan.

Not only does a minivan provide plenty of space for your family, but it also offers more than enough cargo space for your groceries, sports equipment and more. Just bought a new dresser? Need a few sheets of plywood for your next big project? Taking your teen snowboarding? Just fold down or take out your back seats to create all the room you need to move almost anything.

Family-Friendly Features

Minivans have really stepped up their game since their introduction in the 1980s. With versatile seating options, rear air-conditioning, power-sliding doors, USB ports, entertainment systems and more, you can keep the kids content no matter how far away your destination may be.

V6 Engine

Now standard among most minivans, the V6 engine provides more than adequate acceleration and about 25 miles per gallon on the highway. While you won’t be able to outrun a Camaro, you sure won’t feel like you are driving your mother’s old minivan.

Regardless of whether you decide to go with the family-friendly minivan, an SUV or a mid-size sedan, PermaPlate is here for all your automotive protection needs.

Sources: http://www.cheatsheet.com/automobiles/5-reasons-you-should-buy-a-minivan-especially-a-toyota-sienna.html/?a=viewall

http://www.edmunds.com/minivan/before-buy.html

Japan’s Vision for Autonomous Vehicles

Japanese autonomous carsAs we all know, the race to create the first fully autonomous vehicle is well underway, with almost every automotive company in the running. While US-based brands like Ford and Tesla are interested in creating high-tech cars for the younger generations to enjoy, Japanese automotive company Toyota is taking a different approach, working with Kanazawa University to extensively test an autonomous vehicle in the hopes of helping the growing elderly population retain their independence.

Japan’s Aging Population

With one in four of the country’s citizens over the age of 65, Japan is facing a set of unique social trends and problems. Especially in the countryside, seniors are having a difficult time getting around, unable to drive any longer and without many alternative transportation systems like buses and trains to use for grocery-getting and other necessary travels.

Testing in Suzu

With almost half of its population over the age of 65, Suzu, Japan is one of many sleepy, countryside towns facing a transportation crisis. But for the past few months, a little Toyota Prius has been causing quite a stir in the area.

Inside this test car sits a researcher from Kanazawa University and on top of the roof sits a spinning sensor that helps direct the car’s movements. The country’s first extensive autonomous vehicle test, this project hopes to help the country become the first to have fully-autonomous cars for sale to the public.

Predictions

While Toyota has not been as open about their autonomous vehicle predictions as companies like Tesla, the Japanese government is funding 16.3 million dollars a year towards autonomous vehicle technologies.

No one can predict exactly when fully autonomous vehicles will be on the road, but it is clear that this day is coming fairly soon. With so many companies working towards the same goal, drivers young and old will be able to sit back and let their vehicle take the wheel in the years to come.

Here at PermaPlate, we are interested to see what changes these new inventions will trigger in the automotive business and in daily life. Regardless of if you are directing your car or it is driving itself, you will want your vehicle to stay well maintained. From windshield protection to paintless dent repair, we offer a wide range of automotive protection products to keep your vehicle looking like new.

Siskin Enterprises, Inc. Announces ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management System Recertification

http://www.prweb.com/releases/2016/01/prweb13159658.htm

Manufacturer of PermaPlate Products, Siskin Enterprises, Inc., demonstrates an ongoing commitment to delivering superior automotive protection products with their recent recertification.

siskin enterprisesSalt Lake City, Utah, January 7, 2016 – Siskin Enterprises, Inc., is proud to announce that it has obtained ISO 9001:2008 recertification. Originally certified in November 2014, the company continues to meet the standards for packaging, sale, distribution and administration of aftermarket automotive protection products. This recertification demonstrates the commitment that Siskin Enterprises, Inc. and PermaPlate have to their customers and to the continual improvement of the automotive industry.

“It is important for our partners to know that our internal processes are geared toward consistently delivering superior products and end user customer service on a day-in-day-out basis,” says Willard Nisson, CEO of Siskin Enterprises, Inc.

“Siskin Enterprises, Inc. has long espoused a culture of growth and continuous improvement. We are pleased to have achieved this important milestone which will help us achieve our mission of delivering world-class products and service to our customers well into the future,” says Bret Milne, Vice President of Operations.

Certification to ISO 9001 requires an accredited third party auditor to review the company’s quality management system to ensure that it complies with the elements of the ISO standard and that it can consistently deliver products and services that meet the needs of its customers.

Siskin Enterprises, Inc., headquartered in Salt Lake City, UT, is an industry leader in the manufacturing of automotive appearance protection products and in the delivery of world class warranty administration services to the automotive industry. Siskin Enterprises, Inc. is the manufacturer of PermaPlate branded products which are sold through participating auto dealerships throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. 

Car Maintenance Tips to Extend the Life of Your Vehicle

checking vehicle's oil Whether you have just purchased a new vehicle or have been driving the same one for years, regular maintenance is an important way to keep your car running smoothly. Every driver wants their vehicle to live a long life, and there are a few proactive steps you can take to ensure your vehicle is there – and running in top condition – when you need it.

Drive Consciously

You may not think anything of speeding out of the driveway in the morning or stopping abruptly at red lights, but rough driving can cause a lot of damage to your vehicle. To keep your car in top condition, drive with care, easing your car onto the road when you start it up, braking in a smooth fashion and taking turns slowly to prevent unnecessary wear and tear. Your vehicle, your mechanic and the other drivers on the road will thank you.

Check Fluids Regularly

Don’t forget about the fluids under your hood as you are driving around town. Keeping your fluids full is a key aspect of car maintenance, which is why we recommend regularly checking fluid levels and changing your oil as recommended. It is easy to forget to look under your hood, so instead of wondering when the last time you checked your vehicle, stick to a schedule and pop your hood on the first day of each month, checking your oil and transmission fluid as well as brake fluid, coolant and wiper fluid.

Address Problems Right Away

Instead of turning the radio up when you hear your vehicle make a strange noise, pay attention to what the noise sounds like and where it is coming from, then give your mechanic a call. Putting off minor maintenance will only make the problem worse, leading to a bigger problem and a bigger bill down the road. By fixing the small problems as they happen, you will ensure a longer life for your vehicle and smaller repair bills for your wallet.

To help keep your vehicle running and looking its best, PermaPlate offers a wide range of protection products, including a pre-paid maintenance program that ensures that your vehicle’s maintenance schedule is upheld.

Winter Weather and Four-Wheel Drive

SUV driving off-roadAs rain and snow continue to fall across the country, we are all shifting our vehicles into four-wheel drive. But new drivers and first-time owners of trucks and SUVs are probably wondering the same question:

When should you engage four-wheel drive?

The goal of four-wheel drive is to improve traction on slick pavement, in snow and while traversing off-road. And while most of us know the purpose of four-wheel drive, many drivers are unsure of when each mode should be used. With four-high, four-low and automatic four-wheel drive to choose from, which is right for the situation you are in?

Four-High

The most commonly used four-wheel drive setting, four-high allows you to drive at normal speeds on roads covered in snow and ice, as well as on loose gravel and terrain that is easy to maneuver. Four-high provides improved traction, reducing the amount your wheels will slip and slide as you travel to your destination.

Four-Low

Used in the most serious off-road conditions – to get through deep snow and cross water – four-low should not be used when traveling more than 40 mph. Instead of providing you better traction like four-high does, four-low creates the extra torque needed to get through difficult terrain.

Also used for towing purposes, four-low will allow your vehicle to slip a bit more than four-high does and should only be used at appropriate speeds.

Automatic Four-Wheel Drive

A great option for drivers who are unsure of when they need to put their vehicle into four-wheel drive, automatic four-wheel drive will do the thinking for you, monitoring tire traction and transitioning to four-wheel drive if you start to slip. Great for combating icy patches on the roads, you can use automatic four-wheel drive throughout the winter to keep your vehicle moving smoothly.

To ensure your vehicle maintains its new appearance throughout its first winter, consider PermaPlate protection products. With tire protection, windshield protection and more, your vehicle will be up for anything your four-wheel drive can get you into – or out of!

The Weekend In Review: Autonomous Car News

autonomous vehiclesAs we saw at CES 2016, completely autonomous cars are on the horizon with companies like Tesla, Mercedes and BMW already releasing vehicles with self-driving features. Over the past weekend a Tesla software update went live and Ford announced a plan to test drive self-driving vehicles in the snow, bringing us one step closer to having fully autonomous cars on the roads.

Remote-Control Parking

The new Tesla software update that was introduced this weekend gives more than 60,000 vehicles the ability to park themselves – without a driver inside. To operate this remote-control parking feature, the car’s driver must stand less than ten feet away from the vehicle, directing it into its spot using their key fob or Tesla smart phone app. A useful way to park a car into a tight spot, the update also allows your vehicle to exit its spot when summoned and to open and close your garage door.

Autonomous Vehicles and Snow

With snow falling in Detroit, Ford has announced that it will be conducting self-driving car tests at Mcity, a University of Michigan test facility that focuses on the simulation of real-life driving conditions to better prepare autonomous car technology for the roads. Since autonomous cars use sensors to read lane markers and tell where other vehicles are, driving in snowy conditions has been a difficult complication to get around. This winter, Ford, Google and Uber will all be working to overcome this hurdle and we look forward to seeing what answers they come up with.

Even if our cars become fully autonomous in the next few years, their interior and exterior surfaces will still need protecting! PermaPlate offers a wide range of appearance protection products to keep you vehicle looking like new and to ensure that any damage that occurs will be remedied by professionals using the latest reconditioning techniques.

Most Interesting Automotive Innovations at CES 2016

car showroomCES 2016 kicked off in Las Vegas yesterday morning and some of the most exciting innovations in the showroom can be found in the automotive area. Here at PermaPlate, we are always interested in up-and-coming automotive technology, and there were plenty of unique showcases that have caught our attention at CES.

BMW

This year, BMW unveiled the i8 Mirrorless Concept at CES, a vehicle that uses cameras and LCD displays in place of side and rearview mirrors. This vehicle boasts wing-like cameras where side mirrors are typically located, detecting movement and sending blind spot alerts to the driver. Images picked up by the vehicle’s cameras will be displayed on the LCD screen that serves as the rearview mirror.

Mercedes Benz

With a glowing, customizable dashboard, the Mercedes Benz Concept IAA allows the driver to adjust their screen with touch pads located on the steering wheel. The left-hand screen can display traditional gauges as well as a road map, while the right-hand screen is geared toward the vehicle’s passenger. These screens aren’t just a glimpse into the future; drivers can look forward to using them in the newly revamped E-Class sedan later this year.

Ford

Self-driving cars have been making headlines for a while, and Ford showed off a Ford Fusion Hybrid with spinning Lidar sensors at CES. Along with this display came the announcement that the company will be testing 30 autonomous cars on actual roads throughout the year 2016. A leader in the development of self-driving vehicles, Ford will be performing their tests in Arizona, California and Michigan.

PermaPlate looks forward to seeing these innovations progress and become available in new vehicles in upcoming years. From paintless dent repair to paint protection film, we are proud to offer our own innovations to keep your vehicle looking its best.

Keep Your Kids Safe and Your Vehicle Clean This Winter

kids in winter gear in vehicleKids and cars don’t mix well, especially during the cold and snowy winter months. From slippery parking lots to slushy footprints on the rugs and mittens dropped under the seats, there are plenty of problems that parents face when transporting their young children when it’s snowing. While the safety of your kids is your number one concern, you are probably a little worried about what they are doing to the interior of your vehicle this season. Luckily, PermaPlate has some answers to keep your family safe and your vehicle clean in the chilly months ahead.

Staying Warm

The most important part of driving during the winter months is keeping your family warm. To prevent your little ones from catching a cold this season, we recommend heading outside ahead of time and warming your vehicle up. Another important winter safety tip is to put together a winter safety kit. Kept in your back seat or trunk, this kit should include blankets, hats and gloves for the whole family, as well as the items listed in our previous blog post. With a winter safety kit you and your kids will stay warm and safe regardless of what weather you encounter out on the road.

Bundling Babies

For families with babies, it is important to keep your littlest ones warm and safe while traveling. Although a thick winter coat may seem like the warmest way for infants to travel, they are actually a safety hazard. The padding in a bulky winter coat will prevent you from being able to strap your child into their car seat as securely as possible, which could lead to injuries during an accident. Instead of bundling your baby up to get in the car, dress them in a thin fleece jacket, a hat and glove. Warm up your vehicle before heading outside, strapping your child into their car sea following proper safety instructions once it is. To ensure your baby is nice and toasty in his or her seat, place a blanket over their seat, tucking it around the sides. Now that everyone is warm and safe, it’s time to head out.

Avoiding Icy Falls

The only thing worse than slipping and falling in an icy parking lot is seeing your child slip and fall. To keep your young ones safe throughout the winter months, we recommend getting out of your vehicle first and helping the kids out one at a time. This way, you’ll be right there to catch anyone who may slip. Also talk to your kids about walking carefully through icy parking lots and look for winter boots with good traction on the bottoms.

Keeping Your Vehicle Clean

Now that we’ve run through some important safety tips for you and your children to follow while driving during the winter, we have a few words of advice for protecting your vehicle. Not only are salt stains unsightly, but the slushy water that caused them can cause a lot of damage to your vehicle. The salty water can soak through carpets quickly, causing the floor of your car to rust. The easiest solution to this problem: rubber mats.  Placed at the driver’s feet and across the floor of the beat seats, these mats will keep the interior of your vehicle in top shape throughout the winter season.

Looking to ensure that both the interior and exterior of your vehicle make it through the winter unscathed? Consider PermaPlate protection products. From appearance protection to tire and wheel protection and so much more we can keep your entire car looking like new and ensure that any damage that may occur will be remedied by professionals using the latest reconditioning techniques.

Stay Safe on Icy and Snowy Roads this Winter

driving on winter roadsRegardless of whether you are a new or experienced driver, winter weather can make the roads dangerous to navigate. Between the years 2004 and 2013, 22 percent of vehicle crashes were attributed to weather-related problems like wet pavement, snow and slush. To keep yourself and your family safe as you are traveling this winter, PermaPlate has a few words of advice:

Take Your Time

Even the trip around the corner to the grocery store can be extended by winter weather conditions. Heavy snowfall combined with icy roads make it important to drive with care, which is why we recommend giving yourself some extra time to get where you are going. Leave for work a few minutes early to avoid feeling like you have to rush. It takes a lot more time to stop when the roads are icy, so give the car in front of you some extra space and start slowing down earlier than you usually would for stop signs and red lights.

Prepare for Worst Case Scenarios

While no one likes to think about the possibility of getting stuck out in the cold, it is important to prepare for every possibility during the winter months. Remember to keep your gas tank full and put together a winter safety kit for your vehicle. This way, you will be warm and safe no matter what scenario you are facing. Check out our recent blog post, “Preparing a Winter Safety Kit for Your Vehicle” to get your car ready for the rest of the winter season.

Put on Snow Tires

It’s never too late to put on a set of snow tires, which will help to prevent your vehicle from slipping and sliding on icy roads. Refer to this article when choosing a set of snow tires this winter and remember to drive with caution even after your snow tires are on. While these tires will provide you with better traction and a smoother drive, it is still just as important to watch the road carefully when traveling during the winter months.

Winter weather can not only lead to hazardous conditions on the road, but it can also cause problems for your vehicle. Avoid salt stains, rust and muddy floors with PermaPlate protection products. From appearance protection to tire and wheel protection, there are many options to keep your vehicle looking like new after a long, cold winter.

Turn Off Your Engine Instead Of Letting It Idle

car engine idling in parking lotWhether you stopped to drop your bills in the mailbox at the end of your street or waited to pick your kids up from basketball practice, you have probably left your engine idling for more than ten seconds at least once this week. But did you know that in this short period of time, you are wasting more gas than it would have taken to turn off and restart the engine? Not only does this mean you are filling up your tank more than you need to, but you are also causing unnecessary pollution and increasing engine wear. Idling your engine can have negative effects on your vehicle, wallet and the environment. Here are just a few of the reasons we recommend shutting off your car whenever you put it in park.

Improve Air Quality

Instead of letting your car idle while you take cash out of the ATM or wait to pick someone up, turn off your car and help the environment. While spending ten minutes a day idling may not seem like much, every ten minutes your engine is on you release one pound of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. This may not seem like much, but when you add up how many cars are idling around town each day, the numbers really add up.

Reduce Engine Wear

While restarting a vehicle used to put strain on the engine, newer cars no longer have that problem. This means that you can actually reduce engine wear by turning your vehicle off while waiting in parking lots and listening to the radio in the driveway.

Save Some Money

Between the daily commute to work and the running of regular errands, you probably spend a lot of time in your vehicle – and a lot of money filling it up. Cut back on the amount of gas you use every day by limiting the amount of time you idle your engine. According to the Environmental Defense Fund you can save anywhere between $70 and $650 a year by turning off your engine every time you would normally idle.

Reducing the amount of time you idle is just one way to keep your vehicle in top shape. For pre-paid maintenance, tire protection, appearance protection and more, PermaPlate has you covered. Our automotive vehicle protection programs are designed to keep your investment looking like new for years to come. To learn more about our products, visit us online!

What Does My Warranty Cover?

Bimage1uying a new or used car can be a very stressful experience for anyone. Not only do you need to make sure you are purchasing the right car for your lifestyle, but you also need to make sure that your car is covered from the potential of costly repairs in the future.

Basic manufacturer warranties only cover specific repairs such as air conditioning, electrical parts, fuel systems and stock radios, and are also known as bumper to bumper warranties. Typically, this type of warranty only lasts up to three years or 36,000 miles. Any issues pertaining to your vehicle’s tires, exhaust system, windshields, interior surfaces, exterior surfaces and batteries are likely not covered under a basic warranty, which means it is likely that you will face out-of-pocket costs in the upcoming years.

Check What’s Covered

When purchasing a new or used vehicle, remember to check your manual and talk with the salesperson to ensure you know exactly what is and is not covered under your warranty. Other protection programs are available for purchase when you buy a vehicle to help cover costly repairs you may face from any unforeseen issues. Keep in mind that the ever increasing cost of vehicle repairs makes warranties and protection programs worthwhile.

For more information pertaining to warranties and protection programs, visit PermaPlate today. Our Automotive Protection Programs ensure that covered damages will be remedied by professionals that implement the latest reconditioning techniques, meaning your vehicle will look its best for years to come.

The Right Tint For Your Vehicle

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Today, you will observe that many drivers have added tint to their vehicle. Whether it is for aesthetically reasons or simply to block harsh sun rays, tint is a great addition.

Health

Sunlight doesn’t just cause cracking and fading to the interior of your vehicle. Associated with sunlight are Harmful UV rays that damage your skin and accelerate ageing. A high quality window tint can block up to 99% of these damaging UV rays.

Safety and Privacy

Threats from people, forces of nature and accidents can turn your windows into dangerous fragments when shattered. Some tints can double as a protective layer in case of breakage and also help hide your valuable possessions from thieves.

Stay Cool

High performance window tints can reject 50% of heat entering your vehicle. By controlling unwanted heat from the sun, drivers benefit from a more comfortable driving experience.

Glare

Blinding sunlight, headlights or the reflection of light from a variety of sources can make driving dangerous. By blocking excess light, tint enhances your ability to travel safely.

For a better driving experience, consider PermaPlate Automotive Protection Programs. From window tint to Pre-Paid Maintenance, Paintless Dent Repair to Tire and Wheel Protection and so much more, we’ve got you covered. Better yet, all of our products are backed by comprehensive warranties from an A-rated insurance company.

 

Common Causes of Windshield Damage

10799761_SA small chip or crack in your windshield may be easy to ignore, but it has the potential to spread, ultimately leading to a driving hazard and expensive repair. In many cases damage to your windshield is unavoidable. But as your automotive care experts we look for ways to prevent damage to your vehicle. Here is a list of common causes of windshield damage and tips on how to keep your windshield chip and crack free.

Unpaved Roads

Driving on unpaved roads can cause damage to not just your windshield, but your entire vehicle. Remember to leave plenty of space between your vehicle and the vehicle ahead of you. This will help prevent rocks and debris from being propelled into your windshield.

Inclement Weather

Certain types of weather can cause dangerous driving conditions, poor visibility and vehicle damaging forms of precipitation such as hail. These severe forms of weather can cause irreparable damage to your windshield. You should avoid driving in inclement weather and store your vehicle in a safe place until the storm passes.

Temperature Changes

Changes in temperature can cause your vehicle’s windshield to expand and contract, creating the possibility for new cracks to form and existing chips and cracks to spread. Avoid causing drastic temperature changes to your vehicle such as using hot water to defrost your windshield and always have small damage repaired as quickly as possible to avoid unnecessary windshield replacement.

Poor Installation

If your windshield is not installed properly to begin with, this will cause issues down the road including cracks from vibrations caused by uneven roads. Ensure proper windshield installation by using reputable companies that have the trained technicians and quality materials to get the job done properly.

 

 

Even when proper precautions are taken, windshield damage is typically unavoidable. To help prevent windshield damage caused by propelled road debris and to ensure that potential damage will be remedied by professionals using the latest repair and replacement techniques, consider PermaPlate Windshield Protection.

Preparing a Winter Safety Kit for Your Vehicle

shoveling car out of snowDecember is here and with its arrival come the chilly temperatures that make warming up your vehicle before heading off to work a must. The frost on our windshields also reminds us of how important it is to keep an emergency kit inside at all times. As you prepare your home for the holidays this month, PermaPlate also urges you to ready your vehicle – just in case you get stuck in the snow on the way to grandma’s house this year.

What to Keep in Your Kit

When it comes to putting together a car emergency kit, the biggest limitation is space. We recommend keeping a box of smaller safety items inside your vehicle, just in case the trunk freezes shut. While some items, like a shovel and salt, will only fit in the trunk, it is important to keep other items, like blankets, gloves and flashlights, close at hand. Here is a checklist of our must-have winter safety items for cars:

  • Shovel
  • Salt, sand or cat litter
  • Flashlight
  • Water
  • Food
  • Extra jackets, socks, hats and gloves
  • Blankets
  • Emergency flares
  • Florescent flag

Other Safety Precautions

Along with this winter emergency kit, there are also a few things that you should keep in your vehicle at all times. Jumper cables and a spare tire should both have a designated spot in your car, just in case of an emergency. We also recommend keeping a snow brush and windshield scraper in your vehicle all winter long.

Remember to keep your gas tank more than halfway full throughout the winter months and call 911 right away in case of a winter emergency. If you do get stuck in your vehicle for an extended period of time, bundle up, stay inside and avoid running your engine for more than ten minutes each hour, making sure your exhaust pipe isn’t plugged up with snow before you do. Also remember to hang a florescent flag out your window to ensure those driving by will see your vehicle through the snow.

Getting stuck in the cold isn’t the only winter worry that drivers face. From the damaging effects of road salt on the exterior to the muddy footprints on the interior, the winter months can cause a lot of harm to a new vehicle. To prevent most damage and ensure that potential damage will be remedied by professionals using the latest reconditioning techniques, consider PermaPlate protection products.

PermaPlate is Excited to Announce Our Continued Support for Keys to Success

PermaPlate and Keys to Success ScholarshipPermaPlate is excited to announce our continued support for Keys to Success, a Success in Education Foundation program that works to motivate elementary and high school students in Utah. Keys to Success works with schools to recognize students for their hard work and academic achievements, offering scholarships and building a foundation for future learning. Their vision is to achieve the highest reading scores in the country for elementary school students and the highest percent of high school graduates pursing post-high school degrees.

Here at PermaPlate, we believe that helping to provide students with the keys to success is one simple way we can create a better future! We have been working with Keys to Success for several years and are happy to be a part of the great work they are doing. Whether you are a teacher, parent or Utah business, there are opportunities for you to participate as well.

How Can I Participate?

School administrators: Sign your school up to participate is the Keys to Success program, working with teachers and counselors to reward students for their achievements.

Teachers: Work with your students, setting goals and recognizing academic improvements and successes. Raising a grade, helping a classmate and working towards post-secondary education goals are just a few actions that can be rewarded.

Parents: Work with your children to improve study habits and provide assistance on difficult homework assignments. Talk to your kids about continuing their education and help them in their search for post-secondary education opportunities.

Businesses: Keys to Success has been working with universities, post-secondary educational institutions and business sponsors to provide more than 600 scholarships in the past 10 years. This year, more than 300 scholarships are being offered, but it is never too late to join in and help our Utah students succeed!

Visit Keys to Success online to learn more about the program and find out how you can participate.

Avoid These Common Vehicle Care Mistakes

avoid potholes to protect your vehicleWhether it is leaving the back windows open or ignoring potholes, there are lots of little things we do every day that can cause damage to our vehicles. Almost all drivers have little habits that can harm their car, and most people aren’t even aware of what they are doing. Regardless of if you have just purchased a new vehicle or are interested in maintaining the one you have owned for years, consider these driving don’ts the next time you get behind the wheel.

Water Damage

At one time or another, every driver has forgotten to close their car window or sunroof completely and the rain has come down. Soaked carpets and seats are uncomfortable and smelly, thanks to the mold that loves to grow in dark, damp places. Depending on how much water gets in, electronic systems can also be damaged, leading to quite the repair bill. Take the time to do a check of your car as you get out each day, making sure all windows and the sunroof are closed.

Regular Maintenance

Checking fluid levels and tire pressure are two regular components of owning a car that most of us forget to do. To avoid unnecessary wear on your tires and damage to your engine, be sure to check levels regularly – at least twice a month. Also have your oil changed and tires rotated every six months or 5,000 miles maximum.

Lights on the Dashboard

To keep your car running in top condition, be sure to schedule an appointment to have it looked at anytime a warning light appears on the dashboard. Many of us are guilty of continuing to drive around after these lights come on, but this can turn a small problem into a much bigger one.

Ignoring Bumps and Curbs

Whether you aren’t paying close enough attention to the road or are using the curb to help you parallel park, curbs and potholes can do a lot of damage to vehicles. Pay close attention to the road as you drive, slowing down or driving around potholes to keep your suspension in good shape.

To keep your vehicle looking its best, consider PermaPlate and our aftermarket appearance protection programs. Whether it is stained seats or dinged rims, accidents happen.  There are PermaPlate protection options for every surface of the vehicle and our warranties guarantee that covered damages will be remedied by professionals that implement the latest reconditioning techniques.

Sources: http://driving.ca/auto-news/news/worst-things-you-can-do-to-your-vehicle

Before You Purchase Your First Vehicle

woman holding up the keys to her first carPurchasing your first vehicle is an exciting experience, but one begins with a lot of questions. Finding a vehicle that fits your lifestyle and budget takes time, research and some good advice.

What’s Your Budget?

Before your first internet search or trip to a dealership, it is important to create a monthly budget. Include all your typical expenses: rent, food, health insurance and bills. From your remaining monthly balance, you can determine how much you are willing to spend on a car payment, car insurance, fuel and maintenance. Be realistic and make sure you leave some leeway for unforeseen events and saving.

What Will You Use Your Vehicle For?

Everyone has their dream vehicle – the sports car, truck or SUV they have been dreaming of since they first got behind the wheel of mom’s minivan – but this may not be the most sensible option for your lifestyle. As you start shopping, think about what you will use your car on a day-to-day basis and consider vehicles that will satisfy those needs the best.

Once you know if you are looking for a fuel efficient sedan or an SUV with four wheel drive, you can start searching for the brand and model you like best. Do your research and find out as much as you can about the types of cars you are interested in by reading reviews on the web and talking to friends and coworkers.

Take a Test Drive

Now that you have a set budget and your search is narrowed down, it is time to visit local dealerships. Talk to the salesperson about your price range and the cars you are interested, and then head out for a test drive. As much as you can research online, you won’t really know if you like a car until you sit inside of it and see how it handles. Try driving a few similar models until you find the one that you love for a price you can afford.

After you find “the one” there is financing and your warranty to consider. PermaPlate offers a wide range of aftermarket appearance protection programs to keep your new vehicle looking like new throughout its lifetime. From scratched paint to coffee stains on the seats, our warranty guarantees that covered damages will be remedied by professionals that implement the latest reconditioning techniques.