automotive http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/1260/all en-US Do These 5 Car Maintenance Tasks and Keep Your Car on the Road Forever http://www.wisebread.com/do-these-5-car-maintenance-tasks-and-keep-your-car-on-the-road-forever <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/do-these-5-car-maintenance-tasks-and-keep-your-car-on-the-road-forever" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car-inspection-173299274-small.jpg" alt="car inspection" title="car inspection" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You know the feeling: You start the car, and there's a weird noise. Or the check engine light starts to flash halfway into a road trip. Or before leaving for work you discover a disturbing pool of liquid under the car. Pangs of fear course your nervous system, and you frantically check your online banking portal to see if taking the car in will kill your budget. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-slick-tools-to-save-money-on-car-repairs?ref=seealso">6 Slick Tools That Can Help You Save on Car Repairs</a>)</p> <p>All it takes is some foresight to take some preventative measures that keep you from needing major repairs or even replacing your car. You can pay small amounts of money and time for minor improvements in the present that will save you lots of money in the future. Here are five types of maintenance that could save you from costly repairs or even needing a new car.</p> <h2>1. Regular Oil Changes</h2> <p>The average car needs an oil change every 3,000 to 7,000 miles, depending on your car and how often you drive it. At the very least, you should know where and how to check your car's dipstick or gauge to monitor the oil level. It doesn't hurt to learn <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nng2Ey3z8to">how change your own oil</a>, either &mdash; that would save you about $40 every few months, and up to $200 a year!</p> <h2>2. Replace the PCV Valve</h2> <p>You car's positive crankcase ventilation, or <a href="http://www.agcoauto.com/content/news/p2_articleid/197">PCV valve</a>, is an important hub that ensures pressure is being relieved. This prevents such costly events as sludge buildup or engine oil leaks, which over time cause expensive damage to the engine. The PVC valve itself costs only $25, and remembering to change it out every 30,000-40,000 miles would prevent up to $1,000 in engine damage! The math is clearly in your favor. This is typically a repair that a confident DIYer can handle.</p> <h2>3. Brake Inspections</h2> <p>Oh, the brakes. So many things can go wrong. If you live in an area with tons of traffic (ahem, Los Angeles), you are putting crazy wear and tear on your brakes. The easiest thing you can do on your own is have your <a href="http://www.allstate.com/tools-and-resources/car-insurance/check-brake-pads.aspx">brake pads</a> inspected every 3-6 months, depending on your mileage. Not checking for wear early and often can lead to exorbitant rotor and disc repairs and replacements.</p> <h2>4. Replace Timing Belt</h2> <p>The timing belt is a crucial piece of simple machinery that synchronizes the turns of the crankshaft and camshaft(s). This ensures the valves, cylinders, and other components work well. If not replaced, the belt could fail while driving, which would cut the engine and potentially cause engine damage before the car slows to a halt (up to $2500 worth). <a href="http://www.motoringassist.com/motoring-advice/car-maintenance/engine-and-transmission/guide-servicing-timing-belt-replacement/">Change the belt</a> every 60,000 miles.</p> <p>This is not, however, an inexpensive maintenance item. Shop around and ask your mechanic to look at other items, such as possible oil or radiator fluid leaks, which may be more accessible while the timing belt is being replaced. You may be able to bundle the services and save. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-time-money-and-hassle-by-bundling-your-home-repairs?ref=seealso">Save Time and Money by Bundling Your Home Repairs</a>)</p> <h2>5. Prevent Rust</h2> <p>It seems simple, but in many areas of the US, it's unavoidable. Driving in a rainy, snowy climate can be a costly combo. Rust may be unsightly, but it can also cause other problems. Be careful to not let rust spread on your engine, chassis, exhaust system, frame, and trunk, because it can cause unsafe corrosion. Take simple measures to prevent it from spreading, such as a <a href="http://www.treehugger.com/green-home/rust-never-sleeps-you-can-stop-it.html">salt and lime treatment</a>.</p> <p><em>Any other simple or affordable car maintenance items that your regularly perform? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-these-5-car-maintenance-tasks-and-keep-your-car-on-the-road-forever">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-more-gas-by-safely-following-trucks">Save More Gas by Safely Following Trucks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cash-for-clunkers-bill-passed-by-congress-what-does-it-mean-for-consumers">&quot;Cash for clunkers&quot; bill passed by Congress - what does it mean for consumers?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-reasons-why-i-love-public-transportation">Five Reasons Why I Love Public Transportation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-your-new-tires-really-6-year-old-ticking-time-bombs">Are your new tires really 6-year old ticking time-bombs?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-cheap-ways-to-make-your-car-look-awesome">12 Cheap Ways to Make Your Car Look Awesome</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Cars and Transportation automotive Cars mechanic Fri, 06 Jun 2014 11:00:19 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1141811 at http://www.wisebread.com Giving Up Your Car May Be Easier Than You Think http://www.wisebread.com/giving-up-your-car-may-be-easier-than-you-think <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/giving-up-your-car-may-be-easier-than-you-think" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/180647558_fbb63c3ca9_z.jpg" alt="selling vehicle" title="selling vehicle" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I had owned a vehicle since my junior year of high school. Like many, I considered it a birthright.</p> <p>It wasn't until two years ago when both my wife and I worked two miles from our employers that we started to question whether we both needed our own vehicle. Getting over that initial stigma of &quot;downsizing&quot; to one vehicle wasn't easy at first, but the idea gradually started to appeal more to us over time.</p> <p>And then, we did it. We sold the vehicle that we still had payments on and kept the older vehicle that was in the free and clear.</p> <p>Not only was it one of the best financial decisions I ever made, but I also feel much better about myself for not depending on a machine (that pollutes the environment) to get around. (See also: <a title="10 Cost-Conscious Commuting Options" href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-cost-conscious-commuting-options">10 Cost-Conscious Commuting Options</a>)</p> <h2>Giving Up a Vehicle Requires Alternatives</h2> <p>Living two miles from work made the transition extremely easy. Living a block away from a bus route made it even easier. In order to successfully make the transition to not owning a vehicle, realistically, you'll need at least one of the following alternatives:</p> <ul> <li>Live within 2-3 miles so that you can self-power your commute through walking or biking. Note that with this option, weather will undoubtedly throw you some curve balls.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Live along a bus or other mass transit route.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Work regular hours and be on a route that permits a significant other, friend, or co-worker to drop you off.</li> </ul> <p>Luckily, I had two of the three. This made my transition extremely easy.</p> <h2>The Benefits of Giving up a Vehicle</h2> <p>There are many:</p> <h3>Money, Money, Money</h3> <p>This is a personal finance blog, so we'll hit that first. I calculated that I have saved about $2800 annually. This was on a used vehicle that cost me $11k. A new, or more expensive vehicle would obviously make this number much higher. Basically add up your <a title="How Much Car Can You Afford?" href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-car-can-you-afford">monthly payments</a>, insurance costs, maintenance costs, and fuel. Edmunds has a <a href="http://www.edmunds.com/apps/cto/CTOintroController">true vehicle cost calculator</a> to help you figure out this number, based on your make and model. And don't forget the money you will save in parking costs if you work in an urban setting.</p> <h3>Environment</h3> <p>You can find out your CO2 impact based on the make and model you own and miles you drive at <a href="http://www.fueleconomy.gov/">fueleconomy.gov</a>.</p> <h3>Peace of Mind</h3> <p>Having one less possession &mdash; in this case probably your most expensive possession aside from a house &mdash; is very liberating. It's hard to place a value on it.</p> <h3>Space!</h3> <p>Not having to store a vehicle opens up your garage for other things.</p> <h2>The Downsides of Giving Up a Vehicle</h2> <p>The only one for me is not being able to conveniently drive long distances to get to a destination whenever I want. However, I was surprised to find out how little this actually happened. There has literally only been a handful of times in two years. And for those times, there's always the car rental outfits, your friends, or <a href="http://www.anrdoezrs.net/click-2822544-11220075">Zipcar</a>.</p> <p>Over the last two years, I started to realize that owning a vehicle is truly a privilege and not a birthright, or even a necessity. If you can make the move, you won't regret it.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ge-miller">G.E. Miller</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/giving-up-your-car-may-be-easier-than-you-think">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-money-on-gas-free-ebook">Save money on gas + free ebook</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dead-car-battery-give-it-a-glass-of-red-wine">Dead car battery? Give it a glass of red wine.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-times-when-its-okay-to-drop-insurance">6 Times When It&#039;s Okay to Drop Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-to-drop-collision-coverage-on-your-car">When to drop collision coverage on your car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-great-meals-with-your-car-engine-the-heat-is-on">Cooking great meals with your car engine. The heat is on.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation auto automotive car commuting getting rid of vehicle selling vehicle vehicle Tue, 28 Sep 2010 13:00:08 +0000 G.E. Miller 249558 at http://www.wisebread.com Dead car battery? Give it a glass of red wine. http://www.wisebread.com/dead-car-battery-give-it-a-glass-of-red-wine <!-- google_ad_section_start --><!-- google_ad_section_start --><p>&nbsp;</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/redwine.jpg" alt="red wine" title="red wine" width="327" height="216" /></p> <p>I love quick fixes for problems. Especially quick fixes that involve alcochol, and let me tell you that this one is pure genius.</p> <p>If you&#39;ve ever done something silly, like leave a dome light on all night, or you just happen to have a battery that&#39;s on its last legs, then you&#39;ll know the sinking feeling of a dead battery. You dashboard panel lights may not even come on, or you get that repetitive cranking that just won&#39;t turn over.</p> <p>Well, a clever wine drinker has figured out that the acids in red wine are just the boost your battery needs to give it some extra juice. The video below explains it all. But from now on, you can absolutely say that drinking red wine is good for you. Maybe every car repair kit should come with a fruity Shiraz?</p> <p><embed src="http://www.metacafe.com/fplayer/703646/car_battery_charged_with.swf" width="400" height="345" wmode="transparent" pluginspage="http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer" type="application/x-shockwave-flash"></embed><br /><font size = 1><a href="http://www.metacafe.com/watch/703646/car_battery_charged_with/">Car Battery Charged With...</a> - <a href='http://www.metacafe.com/'>The most amazing videos are a click away</a></font> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Main photo by <a href="http://flickr.com/photos/archivalproject/">archival</a> . Thanks. </em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <!-- google_ad_section_end --><!-- google_ad_section_end --><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dead-car-battery-give-it-a-glass-of-red-wine">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-12"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-the-rich-stay-rich-a-lesson-in-lateral-thinking">How the rich stay rich; a lesson in lateral thinking</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/giving-up-your-car-may-be-easier-than-you-think">Giving Up Your Car May Be Easier Than You Think</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/broken-down-turn-your-pencil-into-a-flashlight">Broken down? Turn your pencil into a flashlight.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-money-on-gas-free-ebook">Save money on gas + free ebook</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-great-meals-with-your-car-engine-the-heat-is-on">Cooking great meals with your car engine. The heat is on.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation automotive battery car car battery how to quick fix tips tricks Thu, 05 Jul 2007 15:13:38 +0000 Paul Michael 809 at http://www.wisebread.com The Toyota I-Unit; would you drive it? http://www.wisebread.com/the-toyota-i-unit-would-you-drive-it <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/iunit.jpg" alt="iunit" title="iunit" width="287" height="383" /> </p> <p>We&#39;ve been talking a lot about gas prices recently. That&#39;s no surprise considering we&#39;re paying almost three times more for gas than we were six years ago. The problems of oil refinery shortages, devaluation of the dollar and higher costs of extracting oil will not go away. So, what do we do?</p> <p>Well, a few years ago Toyota launched something called the I-Unit at an Expo 2005 in Japan. At the time, I&#39;m sure it was considered about as silly an idea as the Segway. But not any more. After all, most of us drive alone most of the time. We&#39;re always complaining about gas prices. We hate wasting money (especially if &quot;we&quot; are readers of this site). So, is the I-Unit really such a silly idea?</p> <p><strong>Personal Mobility - a concept, or impending reality?</strong></p> <p>The I-Unit is a cross between a motorcycle and an open-wheeled racer. Based on a leaf design, it uses some state-of-the-art technology to morph from an upright shape at low-speed to a lower, sleeker shape at top-speed (although I&#39;ve searched everywhere and cannot find out what these speeds actually are). Here&#39;s a video that explains a little more...</p> <p><embed src="http://www.metacafe.com/fplayer/651280/toyota_one_person_unit.swf" width="400" height="345" wmode="transparent" pluginspage="http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer" type="application/x-shockwave-flash"></embed><br /><font size = 1><a href="http://www.metacafe.com/watch/651280/toyota_one_person_unit/">Toyota One Person Unit</a> - <a href='http://www.metacafe.com/'>Free videos are just a click away</a></font> <p>One of the most impressive features of the I-Unit, other than saving money, space and energy, is the built-in safety. I-Units can communicate with each other, and have accident-avoidance capability. Meaning however drunk or out of control one driver is, he can&#39;t pile into another I-Unit driver. </p> <p>So, the big question still remains. Would you drive it? I aimed that question at myself and unfortunately, I said no...for now. Until I can be sure that it&#39;s safe on the road against a huge SUV, or significantly better with gas mileage without compromising speed, then I&#39;d have to wait. At least until more folks had adopted them and they were a more common feature on the roadways.</p> <p>I will be watching Toyota&#39;s I-Unit closely. It&#39;s been two years since the launch of the concept vehicle at EXPO 2005, and I&#39;m sure these cars are more in need in the big cities than ever before. It looks like all those funky, tiny cars in futuristic movies weren&#39;t so far from the mark after all.</p> <p><em>Photo by <a href="http://flickr.com/photos/kamome/">Kamome</a></em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-toyota-i-unit-would-you-drive-it">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-wisebread-helped-me-get-45mpg-out-of-my-28mpg-car">How Wisebread helped me get 45mpg out of my 28mpg car.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-money-on-gas-free-ebook">Save money on gas + free ebook</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-reasons-why-i-love-public-transportation">Five Reasons Why I Love Public Transportation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-the-high-cost-of-cheap-gas-hurts-you">This Is How the High Cost of Cheap Gas Hurts You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-surprising-ways-cheap-oil-impacts-your-wallet">8 Surprising Ways Cheap Oil Impacts Your Wallet</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance automotive Cars gas mileage gas prices I-Unit Personal transportation save money Toyota Sat, 16 Jun 2007 05:02:47 +0000 Paul Michael 743 at http://www.wisebread.com Cooking great meals with your car engine. The heat is on. http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-great-meals-with-your-car-engine-the-heat-is-on <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/10810341_45f4dd4d55_0.jpg" alt="saus 2" title="saus 2" width="261" height="196" /></p> <p>Ladies, gentlemen, start your engines. But only after you&#39;ve loaded them up with sausages, chicken, crabs, Cajun shrimp and plenty of vegetables. </p> <p>Car engine cooking will change the way you take road trips, forever. As I&#39;ve stated in the past, I love to get extra use out of the products I buy. Around 15 years ago, I saw a documentary on British television about a guy who had wrapped some sausages in foil, placed them on a strategic part of his engine, and then took a 40 minute drive to his friend&#39;s house. When he got there, the sausages were perfectly cooked and a great end to a small journey.</p> <p>How cool, I remember thinking. But as I couldn&#39;t drive at the time, I forgot all about it. Until last week. For some reason, sitting in my car at a red light smelling the grilling chicken of a nearby Chipotle reminded me of that story. And now I&#39;m pleased and proud to present you with Car Engine Cooking, brought to you by the one and only source I could find on the subject...a wonderful book called Manifold Destiny.</p> <p><strong>MANIFOLD DESTINY - The One! The Only! Guide to Cooking on Your Car Engine!</strong></p> <p>Chris Maynard and Bill Scheller have a serious affinity with cars. Both experienced rally drivers, they must have worked up an appetite on the courses they drove. And as they are also both accomplished cooks, it seems only natural that a book on car engine cooking would be born. </p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/mandest.jpeg" alt="manifold destiny" title="manifold destiny" width="195" height="195" /></p> <p>The book is witty, concise and well-written. Well worth a read on any day. It also goes into more detail than I can recount here, covering everything from types of cars, food placement on engines, international VS domestic models and so on. What I can give you is enough to whet your appetite, followed by the most important part of the story - my FIVE favorite car engine cooking recipes from the many delicacies listed in the book. You can purchase the book direct from Amazon by clicking the link below.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0375751408?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=wisebread07-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=0375751408">Manifold Destiny: The One! The Only! Guide to Cooking on Your Car Engine!</a><img src="http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=wisebread07-20&amp;l=as2&amp;o=1&amp;a=0375751408" width="1" height="1" /><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0375751408?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=wisebread07-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=0375751408"></a> <p><strong>The basics - remember, it&#39;s not an exact science.</strong><br />Chris and Bill advise that although car engines are all different, the principles are the same. So, how do you find the best places on your car engine to place your chicken, your veggies or your succulent piece of rainbow trout? Well, it all comes down to...your finger.</p> <p>Get your car up to operating speed, or better yet take it for a drive around the block for five minutes, and then bring it back to the garage and lift the hood. Now, finger at the ready, you start quickly touching various parts of the engine (nothing plastic...that will never get hot enough to cook anything). And by quickly touching, it&#39;s the kind of swift stab that means your finger feels the heat but you don&#39;t give yourself a third degree burn. (If you&#39;re feeling really wussy, try an infrared thermometer). Usually, the hottest part of the engine will be the exhaust manifold. On older cars, the top of the engine block will be a good, sizzling place.</p> <p>You&#39;re not just looking for the hottest parts of the engine. Like any kind of cooking, different foods require different temperatures. A very hot part of the engine will be great for thick meat, a cooler part good for veggies or fish. Or, if you&#39;re traveling many hundreds of miles, you may want to use the cooler part to slow-cook your meat. Mmmm. As always, this is trial and error. </p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/car-cooking.jpg" alt="car cook" title="car cook" width="352" height="211" /></p> <p><strong>NEVER let the food interfere with the engine&#39;s moving parts</strong><br />We want a great meal here, not a wrecked engine. And who would want to explain to the local mechanic why there&#39;s a piece of rump roast stuck in the timing belt? Always choose places that are static, and ensure they are not going to move. The boys have put together this handy list of things to avoid.</p> <p><strong>Car engine cooking no-nos...</strong></p> <p><strong>1 - Give the accelerator linkage a WIDE berth.</strong> It connects the gas pedal to carburetor or fuel-injection system and regulates the flow of fuel to the cylinders. Jam this and either your car won&#39;t start, or worse, it won&#39;t stop!</p> <p><strong>2 - Don&#39;t block the airflow.</strong> You&#39;ll suffocate the engine. </p> <p><strong>3 - Avoid yanking wires.</strong> Or pulling wires. Or forcing a food-package to fit. Basic rule of thumb...if you have to force it, you shouldn&#39;t put it in. </p> <p><strong>4 - Place food with the engine OFF.</strong> Seems like an obvious rule, but if you don&#39;t want a nasty injury, follow this advice. </p> <p><strong>5 - Avoid foods with lots of liquid.</strong> Foil-wrapping a meal with lots of liquid could results in unwanted goop all over your engine. And that&#39;s not good for it. </p> <p><strong>The FOIL CONE test</strong><br />This is done to give you a good idea of how much room you have in your new &#39;oven&#39;, and cannot be skipped. Simply make a cone of aluminum foil about 5 inches high, place it on the injector housing, then shut the hood. Now, when you open it, how much of that cone has been crushed? If it&#39;s a lot, your car engine will only be good for cooking slimmer meals, like fish and strip steak. If it hasn&#39;t been touched, you&#39;ll need extra foil to stop your packages from moving around. </p> <p><strong>Preparing your meal</strong><br />Foil is about to become your new best friend. Grab a sheet of foil large enough to comfortably cover the food/ingredients. You don&#39;t want to be cheap on foil here, more is better. Wrap the foil around, creating a package, and crimp the foil tightly. You want a seal all around the food. And then do it again. And then again. Triple-wrapping in foil is the only way to ensure a tight, sealed, safe package.</p> <p><strong>Finally...my FIVE favorite recipes from Manifold Destiny</strong></p> <p><strong>Cruise-Control Pork Tenderloin - Cooking distance: 250 miles<br /></strong>I like this one because it&#39;s soft and tender, and is a great treat for the end of a long journey (hey, I&#39;m a Brit...250 miles is along way to me).<strong></p> <p></strong></p> <blockquote><p><strong>Ingredients: </strong><br />1 large pork tenderloin, butterflied<br />3 tbsp Dijon mustard<br />2 tbsp dry white wine<br />1/2 cup red onion, minced<br />2 tsp rosemary (fresh), crushed<br />Salt &amp; pepper</p> <p>Blend together all of the ingredients (except the pork) and spread across the inside of the pork tenderloin. Close up the pork, triple-wrap in foil and place on a medium-hot part of the engine. Turn once (125 miles) during cooking. </p></blockquote> <p> <strong><br />Any-city Chicken Wings (sweet) - Cooking distance: 140-200 miles<br /></strong>Is there a better snack food than buffalo chicken wings? I can&#39;t think of one, personally. So imagine my delight when I discovered a car-engine recipe. Feel free to swap out ingredients according to how hot/spicy/tangy you like your wings. This is my take on the recipe (the optional ingredients).<br /><strong><br /></strong></p> <blockquote><p><strong>Ingredients: </strong><br />18 chicken wings<br />1/2 cup ketchup<br />1 tbsp molasses (optional)<br />1 cup red wine vinegar<br />1-2 tsp red pepper flakes<br />4-6 minced jalapenos<br />3 cloves garlic<br />1 tbsp honey (optional)<br />1 tbsp oregano<br />1 tsp brown sugar (optional)<br />Pinch of salt<br />Fresh black pepper (optional)<br />Splash of Tabasco Chipotle sauce (optional)<br />Splash of Worcestershire sauce (optional)</p> <p>Blend together all of the ingredients (except wings) and pour over chicken wings. Cover tightly in the fridge for at least 24 hours. Drain wings (save the marinade) and divide into three foil packages. Brush with marinade, then triple-wrap each package tightly and place on medium-hot part of the engine. I like my chicken well done so I do the 200 miles, or around 3 1/2 hours. </p></blockquote> <p><strong> <br />Good &amp; simple Cajun Shrimp/Crayfish - Cooking distance: 35 miles<br /></strong>I love shrimp, and this is a quick journey. For most, it&#39;s an average morning&#39;s commute. What a way to start the day...Cajun Shrimp for breakfast.<strong></p> <p></strong></p> <blockquote><p><strong>Ingredients: </strong><br />1 pound large shrimp or crayfish tails, in shells.<br />6 small green hot peppers<br />2 cloves garlic<br />1 medium onion, finely chopped<br />Butter or spread<br />Salt &amp; pepper</p> <p>Remove seeds from peppers (ouch, they are hot) and mince with the onion and garlic. Butter your foil, add the shrimp and cover with your spicy mixture. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper, then triple-wrap and place in a medium part of the engine. Delicious, seasoned, spicy shrimp or crayfish await.</p></blockquote> <p><strong> <br />Eggs On Cheese Pie - Cooking distance: 55 miles<br /></strong>Another good breakfast food, or anytime food. Legend has it that the recipe (minus the cooking method) originated in medieval monasteries. A holy treat.<strong></p> <p></strong></p> <blockquote><p><strong>Ingredients: </strong><br />Breadcrumbs (Italian or fresh homemade)<br />1/2 pound mozzarella cheese, cubed<br />6 eggs (free range folks....be good)<br />Diced Canadian bacon (optional)<br />6 empty tuna-fish cans for cooking<br />Pinch of cayenne and paprika (optional)<br />Butter or spread.<br />Salt &amp; pepper.</p> <p>Wash 6 empty tuna cans and butter the insides. Sprinkle a few tablespoons of breadcrumbs into each can and shake to cover the base evenly. Dump out excess. Now cover with mozzarella (and bacon if desired) then crack an egg on top of each, add seasonings and spices on top, then cover with mozzarella. Wrap cans tightly in foil, place on a hot part of the engine with good contact for the base of each can, and after 55 miles they should be good. If not, keep driving till the cheese has melted. <strong> </strong></p></blockquote> <p><strong> <br />Pat&#39;s Provolone Porsche Potatoes - Cooking distance: 55 miles<br /></strong>Good for vegetarians and a great side dish, this is simple, tasty car engine cooking.<strong></p> <p></strong></p> <blockquote><p><strong>Ingredients: </strong><br />1/2 pound new potatoes<br />1 cup milk<br />1 cup water<br />2 ounces grated aged provolone (or my favorite, aged cheddar)<br />Butter<br />Salt &amp; pepper</p> <p>Peel and slice potatoes to 1.4 inch thick. Place in a saucepan with the milk and water and simmer 10 mins. Drain, then spread onto heavily buttered foil. Sprinkle with your cheese (or cheeses, experiment with flavors) and seasonings. Sprinkle with butter, triple-wrap and place around medium-hot parts of the engine. Delicious.</p></blockquote> <p><strong>And finally, practice makes perfect.<br /></strong>You aren&#39;t going to get all of this right first time. Experiment with different ingredients, different parts of the engine and different cooking time. As I say, the book is an essential resource for all budding car-engine chefs, so please pick up a copy or at the very least see if you can find one in your local library. Soon, you&#39;ll be driving and cooking in perfect harmony. Happy times. <strong><br /></strong></p> <p><em>Main photo by <a href="http://flickr.com/photos/blatch/">Blatch</a> . Thanks Blatch! </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-great-meals-with-your-car-engine-the-heat-is-on">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/for-the-love-of-ramen-an-interview-with-ed-from-ramenramenramen-net">For the Love of Ramen: An Interview with Ed from RamenRamenRamen.net</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/healthy-frugal-eating">Healthy, frugal eating</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ugggh-hic-i-justss-gotta-eat-somehicthing-my-top-10-homemade-drunk-snacks">Ugggh, (hic) I justss gotta eat some(hic)thing; my top 10 homemade drunk snacks.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-ghetto-mac-yours-for-1">The GHETTO MAC - yours for $1.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-starbucks-savings-hacks-that-actually-work">7 Starbucks Savings Hacks That Actually Work</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink automotive car car engine cooking cheap eats driving Fast Food Food manifold destiny Thu, 17 May 2007 21:05:56 +0000 Paul Michael 655 at http://www.wisebread.com Save money on gas + free ebook http://www.wisebread.com/save-money-on-gas-free-ebook <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/gasprices.jpg" alt="gas prices reach new heights" title="gas prices" width="213" height="320" /></p> <p>When I moved to America in the spring of 2001, I was paying around $1.40/gallon. Not so long ago, the price of mid-grade was double that, although now I&#39;m paying around $2.20/gallon for my fuel. So, I decided to reduce my costs and look into ways to spend less at the pump. I found a lot of tips, plus a link to a 96-page ebook that I&#39;ll share with you at the end of this article. </p> <p>Now, as I soon discovered, there are literally hundreds of ways to chop a penny or two here and there. Way too many to list here. But I&#39;m a big fan of Top 10 lists, so here&#39;s mine. Once again, no particular order here folks. </p> <p><strong>1: Fill up in the evenings</strong><br />Believe it or not, the pumps deliver a little more gas per dollar when the temperatures are lower. If you follow that logic, right now in Colorado I should be getting more bang for my buck than you folks in sunny L.A. </p> <p><strong>2: Topping-off short-changes you</strong><br />It&#39;s something a lot of us do, because we don&#39;t want to be driving anywhere without a decent amount in the tank. But, when you only put a small amount of gas in your car, the pump doesn&#39;t get a chance to fully activate. In the long run, topping off can add several cents to the cost of a gallon of gas. </p> <p><strong>3: Follow the crowd - find busy gas stations</strong><br />It seems an odd statement, right? Normally, I&#39;m all against waiting any longer than I have to. But, the busy stations have fresher fuel, because their tanks are constantly being refilled. And that gives you more power from your gas than the fuel you&#39;d find at those slow stations, which has been gradually contaminated by sitting for months and months in the pit. </p> <p><strong>4: Shopping around can save you mucho buckeroos</strong><br />On one street in my neighborhood, the cost of regular differed by 20 cents between three different stations. For a 20 gallon tank, that&#39;s a $4 difference. Multiply that by 24 (that&#39;s how many times I have to fill up per year...I&#39;m lucky I live close to work) and that&#39;s almost $100 saved per year, just by driving an extra 2 minutes. It all adds up. To find gas savings nearby, try <a href="http://www.gaspricewatch.com/new/">GasPriceWatch</a> or <a href="http://www.gasbuddy.com/">GasBuddy</a> .</p> <p><strong>5: Always keep your tires at the correct pressure</strong><br />It&#39;s a pain to keep checking them, but under-inflated tires take more power to roll. More power = more gas = more cost. The correct tire pressure is printed on the tire itself, it&#39;s usually around 32psi but check your own tires to make sure. And you could always try replacing your current tires with Low Rolling Resistance tires (LLR...a lot of Hybrids have them now) to further improve gas mileage.</p> <p><strong>6: Only buy the grade you need</strong><br />I put mid-grade in my car because the manual recommends it. I drive an import. But my wife&#39;s car is a Chrysler and the manual says that 85 is perfectly fine. And you only really need that premium gas if you&#39;re driving some kind of super-machine ( a Porsche is not in my future any time soon). So, unless you want that extra cost for some kind of status symbol, keep it real. </p> <p><strong>7: Turn that gas cap</strong><br />You&#39;re not going to break it by turning it a few clicks. A tight gas cap prevents fuel from evaporating, and that could save you a lot of money over the year. Another way to prevent evaporation is to park in the shade.</p> <p><strong>8: Use A/C when you need it</strong><br />Air-conditioning and climate-control puts a big strain on your gas consumption. If it&#39;s cooler outside, roll down a window. Alternate between the A/C and the fan in the summer months. The cool air circulating in your car will take a while to heat up. I know, I know, it&#39;s an annoying way to save money. But it does work. </p> <p><strong>9: Never take the car to empty</strong><br />It&#39;s good advice for many reasons. After all, who wants to run out of gas on the side of some creepy highway at midnight? (I&#39;ve seen way to many horror movies). But, when it comes to gas consumption, you use more gas when the tank is almost empty. Your vehicle runs less efficiently as it tries to speed up and slow down in the mornal fashion. Ideally, fill your tank when it&#39;s around 1/4 full. </p> <p><strong>10: Weekends are pricier than weekdays</strong><br />Not all the time, but most of the time. Due to increased leisure driving over the weekends, the gas prices rise to meet demand. The best times to get your gas are Tuesday evenings and Wednesday mornings. </p> <p>I could go on and on, but these are my top 10 and they&#39;re easy enough to remember. If you really want to take this gas-saving business to the next level, I can highly recommend an ebook I recently read called &quot;How To Save At The Pump: 62 Ways&quot; by Fred Greenwald. It&#39;s usually around $7 in paperback, but I found a link to a free ebook version <a href="http://books.lulu.com/content/98405">here</a>. You&#39;ll have to give them the usual name and email address info, but skip the part about the credit card and hit the back button. You&#39;ll get to the link that lets you download the complete book for free. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-money-on-gas-free-ebook">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-the-high-cost-of-cheap-gas-hurts-you">This Is How the High Cost of Cheap Gas Hurts You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-wisebread-helped-me-get-45mpg-out-of-my-28mpg-car">How Wisebread helped me get 45mpg out of my 28mpg car.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-bank-of-gasoline-0">The Bank of Gasoline</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-toyota-i-unit-would-you-drive-it">The Toyota I-Unit; would you drive it?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/running-the-numbers-on-the-bigger-car-what-s-your-cost-and-is-it-worth-it">Running the numbers on the bigger car: what’s your cost and is it worth it?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation auto budget. automotive car free ebook free gas tips. gas gas prices pump save money Sun, 18 Feb 2007 21:04:06 +0000 Paul Michael 285 at http://www.wisebread.com