Posted In:Automotive Archives - Pligg

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5 Safety Tips Every Motorcyclist Should Know

April 17, 2017 - By 
motorcycle safety

Motorcycle riding is an exhilarating hobby for men and women around the world. It’s a cool, exciting and fuel-efficient way to get to a destination.

Yet, statistics show that motorcycle riding does come with some dangerous risks. In 2014 motorcycle deaths were more than 27 times those of cars.

Drivers don’t see motorcyclists or some cyclists overestimate their own driving skills. There are various factors at play leading to the high fatality rates.

Luckily there are simple things a rider can do to stay accident-free. Here’s how a motorcyclist can stay safe on the road.

Dress For Safety

It doesn’t matter if it’s the hottest day of summer. It’s still essential that you wear proper riding gear when driving a motorcycle. Something as simple as jeans can provide you with riding protection.

Riding gear can protect you from rain, sand, bugs and other debris. They’ll also better protect your skin in the event of a crash.

So skip the t-shirt, sandals, and shorts and dress safely. Leather clothing and boots are a great choice for extreme protection. Go with bright colored outfits. This helps other drivers to see you better.

And what about those dog days of summer? You can buy protective clothing made with breathable material and ventilation.

Are you wearing a helmet with an open face? Then glasses or goggles should be worn. By the way, your helmet should be DOT-approved and never ride without it!

Anyone riding in the back of your bike needs to wear protective gear too. Bonus tip: a motorbike intercom will make group rides awesome. You’ll be able to chat with your fellow riders while enjoying the breeze.

Know Your Riding Skills

Yes, motorcycle riding will probably make you look and feel cool. But don’t let your ego get in the way of your safety. Be realistic about your riding skills and don’t get in over your head.

Overestimating your riding abilities could cost you your life. When bike shopping, choose one that you can handle. Your feet should rest flat on the ground.

Your feet should rest flat on the ground. All handlebars and controls should be within comfortable reach for your hands. And the bike shouldn’t feel too heavy. Try to choose more familiar driving routes so that you can focus on safety.

For daily commuting consider a smaller model with a 250 to 300 cc engine. Are you a highway rider? Then you might want to go with a 500 to 750 cc range engine.

Pamper Your Ride

Now by pamper, we don’t mean simply keeping your bike nicely oiled. This means giving your bike a look-over before getting on the road.

Check your tire pressure, lights and mirrors. Check for any loose parts or leaks. Don’t neglect your bike and always give it regular maintenance

Worn-out motorcycle parts can greatly increase your risk of an accident.

Invest In Antilock Brakes

Antilock brakes are a great investment into your motorcycling safety. They help you keep control of the bike if you suddenly have to break.

These brakes already come with many high-end motorcycles. Check to see if your insurance will pay for some of the cost.

Be Aware

Experienced motorcycle riders will tell you that safe driving requires taking initiative. So your motorcycle’s mirrors don’t mean you shouldn’t do your own looking.

Want to switch lanes? It’s safest to turn and look over your shoulder. Once you see that you’re clear then make your move.

Or how about approaching a corner? Turn your head and assess your position and other vehicles around before proceeding.

Learning to pay extra attention to your surroundings will keep you much safer.

 

Take A Riding Safety Course

You can also sharpen your motorcycling skills by taking a riding course. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) offers safety courses all around the country. You can learn basic or advanced riding skills along with emergency moves.

MSF courses will cost you about $350. However, your insurance may cover some of the cost. The more informed you are as a rider the safer you’ll be.

Motorcycling insurance is another smart investment for riding lovers. If you have a crash, you don’t want to have pay to wazoo. Insurance will allow you to ride peacefully knowing your covered if anything happens.

Check The Weather

Icy or wet roads can increase your chances of having a motorcycle. So check the forecast before hitting the road.

Slippery roads can increase the chances of you making a mistake. And rain or fog can create dangerous visibility situations. You should also avoid riding in strong winds.

Sometimes getting caught in the rain is unavoidable. Remember that the most dangerous time is just after the water hits the ground. Go easy on your brakes to prevent sliding.

Be aware of slippery patches of sand or gravel – try to avoid if possible.

Drive Defensively

Unfortunately, many motorcycle accidents happen because of other vehicles not seeing motorcyclists. So motorcyclists have to drive defensively to keep themselves as safe as possible.

Let’s go over a few defensive motorcycle driving safety tips:

  • Try to keep at least 20 feet between you and other  When riding in a group and there is oncoming traffic, be sure and let them know how many riders are behind you.
  • Avoid riding next to trucks. They can cause wind turbulence and block other drivers view of you. When you pass a truck try to get in their mirror so that they can see you.
  • Drivers of other vehicles can be distracted by many things. This is why you should assume that they cannot see you. Act as if they can only see in front of them.

    So stay out of blind spots, and always be prepared for someone to change lanes.

Motorcycling can be a fantastic experience for enthusiasts. While it comes with risks, many riders enjoy their hobby accident-free. The trick is to be educated on safety measures and to implement them into your riding routine.

Another key is always staying in a mindset of learning. Each ride that you take will be a chance to sharpen your riding skills.

Riding with more experienced riders is another way to steadily improve. Or if you’re a riding pro help newbies along with these life-saving tips.


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What to Do During Diesel Exhaust Fluid Troubles

March 22, 2017 - By 
def fluid

If you have a diesel vehicle, then it’s possible that you may run into DEF problems in the future.

Protect and prepare yourself by reading the guide below on DEF fluid troubles. From explaining the DEF mechanism to troubleshooting the most common problems, we can help you prevent any future problems that you may incur.

Diesel Exhaust Fluid Troubles

Use this guide to manage and treat diesel exhaust fluid troubles.

What is DEF?

Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) is a solution made up of 32.5% urea and 67.5% de-ionized water that is added to a tank separate from the diesel fuel tank.

It is added to diesel vehicles to help them break down harmful emissions into nitrogen and water, through a Selective Catalytic Reduction system.

Due to EPA regulations, vehicle manufacturers have had DEF measurements in place for diesel vehicles since 2010, to help protect the environment and achieve fuel savings for drivers.

When to Add DEF

Make sure you pay attention to the alerts that arise on your dashboard. If a low DEF warning appears, make sure you add fluid as soon as possible.

When the DEF level drops below 10%, an amber warning will appear. At 5%, it will start flashing. If it falls below 2.5%, the engine power will be reduced and the vehicle speed will be stuck at 5 mph until you refill the DEF tank.

To prevent that mess, make sure you fulfill preventative care of your DEF tank and fill up as needed.

Common Mistakes & How to Fix Them

Of course, mistakes can occur when you’re taking care of a vehicle. Educate yourself and make sure you stay on top of preventing mistakes to help you survive future problems.

The top 3 DEF troubles arise from:

1. Putting DEF into Your Diesel Tank

Since DEF is made up of urea and water, putting it into your diesel tank can cause serious problems. That liquid combination can cause engine problems like causing fuel injector tips to explode or cause immediate cooling.

If you made this mistake, follow this protocol:

  • Shut off the engine and contact your engine service provider.
  • Drain the diesel tank and dispose of the fuel.
  • Drain the diesel fuel conditioning module.
  • Flush the fuel system.
  • Replace all filters.

2. Ignoring the Warning Signals for DEF

Again, if you ignored the warning signals for DEF that meant it was time for you add fluid, you will be in trouble.

Warnings traject from Exhaust Fluid Range to Exhaust Fluid Low-Speed-Limited Soon to Exhaust Fluid Empty-Refill Now. Each warning is important as it denotes when it is time to refill.

If you missed these warnings, your car will be limited to 5 mph so make sure you fill up immediately.

3. Putting Contaminated DEF into the System

Contaminated DEF can also create problems, most likely resulting from improper storage.

Symptoms of fuel contamination include:

  • an engine cranking, but won’t start
  • engine runs rough
  • low power
  • engine knocking
  • exhaust smoke
  • FRP slow to build

Contaminated DEF can cause severe damage to the fuel system, so the most recommended repair is to replace the entire fuel system, which can be a very expensive.


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What are the Health Qualifications for CDL Truck Drivers?

February 27, 2017 - By 
Health Qualifications for CDL Truck Drivers

Driving trucks may not be for everyone. But you, after months, or perhaps years, of saving for truck driving school, are sure that driving trucks is what you want to do with your life right now.

Unfortunately, however, your desire to drive trucks won’t be enough to guarantee that you’ll land a job as a truck driver. As it turns out, there is a whole host of health qualifications that you must meet before you are allowed to get behind the wheel of a truck, and for good reason.

So what are these health qualifications?

Follow along as we briefly cover the basics.

Physical Capabilities

There is nothing unexpected about the physical requirements for being a truck driver. Simply put, you need to have a full set of fully functional limbs, no impairments that affect your ability to grip objects, the ability to see well enough to drive, and good hearing.

Keep in mind that you will be tested for most of these things.

Diseases & Disorders

Unsurprisingly enough, most jobs require that you are not too ill to perform the duties that are expected of you on the job, and this job is no exception. Though some of the following requirements may not seem entirely reasonable or fair, there are, in fact, good reasons for imposing such rules on aspiring truck drivers:

Though some of the following requirements may not seem entirely reasonable or fair, there are, in fact, good reasons for imposing such rules on aspiring truck drivers:

  • If you are diabetic and rely on insulin to manage your condition, you are not currently eligible to become a truck driver, primarily because insulin can have serious side effects that affect people’s ability to operate vehicles.
  • If you have a respiratory problem that could possibly impair your driving, you are not allowed to become a truck driver. Your medical examiner will determine whether or not your respiratory issues are too serious to take on the work.
  • People with high blood pressure are also weeded out of the pool of candidates.
  • Joint or muscular problems such as arthritis are not acceptable since they can affect your ability to drive.
  • Candidates with some form of heart disease are perceived to be dangerous on the road due to the fact that their heart conditions could lead to crashes.
  • If you have a psychiatric disorder or anxiety, you’re not permitted to become a truck driver. There are also other mental conditions that will disqualify you.
  • You can’t have epilepsy or any similar condition which might affect your driving.

Drug Use

The expectations for drug use are standard, so you probably already have some idea about the substances that will affect your ability to become a truck driver. That said, we’ll quickly touch on what those substances are and how you are permitted to use them.

As you no doubt know, you are not allowed, under any circumstances, to use illegal substances, and this stipulation holds for any job that you apply for.

The rules surrounding the use of legal substances such as prescription drugs, however, are a bit more complicated. While you may use legal substances, the catch is that those drugs cannot affect your mental and physical capabilities. You are usually required to get the opinion of a medical examiner before you are cleared to work while you are taking certain drugs.

You are also allowed to consume alcohol during your free time, but you cannot currently be an alcoholic.

Conclusion

You should be aware of the fact that driving trucks can bring on certain health problems. Common concerns are bodily aches (especially back pain), sleep deprivation, and weight gain as a result of leading a sedentary lifestyle.

If you’re willing to take those risks, take a look at what CDL Truck Driver Training School has to offer aspiring truck drivers. After all, there is no reason to delay your dreams.