Helpful Tips to Buying a Car on Craigslist

Craigslist is a massively popular website for advertising. Millions of people use Craigslist for selling and buying products, services, apartments, and job hunting. Craigslist has recently become very popular for auto sales. However, with the occasional horror story related to Craigslist sales, many people have avoided Craigslist. Using common sense and a few tips, Craigslist can be a great way to buy a used car at an affordable price.

  1. Utilize both search options; the private seller and dealer options. The dealer options will provide you with a more legitimate buying option. The dealer option will also provide you with a certified and warrantied vehicle. This option may be the smartest choice if you aren’t looking to sift through thousands of cars that people are selling from their backyards. If you are looking for a car at a slightly more affordable rate, the seller option may be perfect for you. You will have many choices!
  2. Read the ad closely. Look for typos, or all caps, and grainy pictures. These can be indicators of a faulty car and a seller who isn’t looking to disclose much.
  3. Call the seller first. Try to judge the person’s character, and ask as many questions that you can about the car itself. Ask for more photos of the car, including any photos of problem areas that the ad might have mentioned.
  4. Meet in a public space. Many police stations now allow people to make Craigslist exchanges in their parking lot. This is a perfect place to use for safety. If you don’t have a convenient police station to use, an area with a lot of foot traffic is also safe.
  5. Have the car inspected. If it’s just you, take the car for a drive and test out the essentials. If you are buying for a family, or would like to be a little more cautious, have the car inspected by a reputable mechanic. A seller with nothing to hide will agree!
  6. Try to negotiate the price, and make sure that the title is clean.
  7. Head to your bank to sign papers! The bank will provide a secure and official space for the sale to become finalized.
  8. Once the car is yours, make sure you have all of the items with you. Check to make sure all of the parts to the car are included, and that you aren’t leaving anything behind with the seller.

Once your sale is finalized, you are free to enjoy the car! You have made it out of your Craigslist transaction safely and easily.

 

Heat & your Auto Glass

The relationship between heat and the automobile is something of a constant battle, especially here in North Carolina. Extreme heat can do a number to cars in terms of overheating, tire damage, engine performance, and most other parts of the vehicle.

One area we have the most experience with is of course auto glass. Heat can have a damaging effect on auto glass over time. Auto glass can potentially suffer in cases of severe heat. Already existing cracks in auto glass can spread and expand when exposed to extreme heat.

If you have a small crack in your windshield, you may be in luck. Many small cracks can be repaired, rather than fully replaced. However, if you blast the windshield with the AC during a hot summer day, you very well may need to get a full windshield replacement. That’s because the contrast between the heat and cool air can cause that small crack to spread.

Carolina Windshield Centers has locations across North Carolina. Please contact us for more information about our windshield replacement services!

Five Common Driving Misconceptions

After years of driving on the road, you may consider yourself a good driver and for the most part you are correct. You have probably heard a lot of driving tips from a number of people, but how do you know if they are true or not. Here is a list of five common driving misconceptions you have probably heard.

1.“If you get into a skid, put your vehicle in neutral”

We all dread the moment your car starts to skid and you are left with seconds to make a decision. You have probably been told that “putting your vehicle into neutral will help you straighten your wheels” from family or friends. However, this tip only works for some vehicles. If the back end of your front-wheel-drive vehicle is skidding, the best option to straighten your wheels is to apply power. If you have shifted neutral, you will be unable to apply force to pull yourself out.

  1. “Rushing up to red lights will save time”

It is never a good idea to accelerate before making a stop. When coming up to a red light it is best to gradually slow down than to rush to a red light. Gradually reducing speed will reduce the chances of being hit from behind and will save you fuel and brake wear.

  1. “All-wheel drive is a safety feature”

Do not be fooled by auto manufacturers that hint in commercials that all-wheel drive is a safety feature. All-wheel drive is a performance feature that only affects the vehicle’s dynamics, like acceleration. All-wheel drive will not allow your tires to grip more for braking or steering. All-wheel drive leads drivers feeling overconfident on roads that are actually slippery and unsafe.

  1. “Fog lights”

Most of us drive with our fog lights on at night even though there isn’t a sign of fog anywhere. Fog lights are designed to be used when the fog is so dense the headlights reflect back off the water droplets in the fog and make vision difficult. It is best to leave them off when driving, so not to blind oncoming drivers.

  1. “Wider tires give you more rubber on the road”

This is a common misconception that many people defend. People will argue that more rubber will give your vehicle more traction on the road, while in fact, wider tires change the shape but not the size of the contact patch. This is only true as long as the weight of the vehicle and the tire pressure stay the same.

Carolina Windshield Centers is a leading auto glass repair shop working in Charlotte, Greensboro, Hickory, and Morrisville, NC. For more information about our windshield replacement services, contact our Charlotte, NC auto glass shop at 800-900-1505.

How to Maintain Your Headlights

Does your once clear headlights look like they are covered in wax paper now? Maintain the life of your vehicle by learning how to buff and clean your headlights! By learning how to check your headlights for any damages, you’ll be able save money and approach the task yourself!

Most headlights are made out of polycarbonate plastic which is scratch resistant and durable but tends to cloud overtime. The polycarbonate starts to get cloudy due mostly due to the UV rays that degrade the outside layer of the plastic. Also regular road grit and grim can make the headlights look dirty and hazy.  Luckily, headlights can be restored to their original condition easily with some elbow grease and with the products available in the market today. First, prep your headlights for a good clean by wiping as much grime off as possible with a glass cleaner or with some soap. Look for yellowing, this happens when the hard coating starts to thin out and lose adhesion to the polycarbonate lens. If your headlights are made out of glass, its best to get a professional to take a look at it.

After drying the area, use painter’s tape to tape around the headlights so you don’t sand your car’s paint.  The next step to maintaining your headlights is sanding the outer layer of haze. This is a crucial step in cleaning your headlights, so do it thoroughly. When finished, the entire headlight should be clear of any yellowing and have an even, dull surface. The third step is to polish your headlights. A fine polish will buff away the sandpaper’s scratches and make your headlights look clear again. The last step to restoring your headlights is using a UV sealant. When sanding your headlights, it removes any protective layer that was originally applied to the headlights. It’s best to seal a protective layer on your headlights again with a UV sealant. This will help extend the life of your headlights and you won’t have to worry about your headlights getting hazy any time soon!

Now, it should be easier to approach the task of maintaining your headlights with these steps! If you are in need of a professional to examine your headlights, contact Carolina Windshield Center today!

Taking Care of your Auto Glass

Though many drivers may not know it, your auto glass is one of the most important safety features in your vehicle. However, many drivers do not think to maintain it as they might spend time maintaining other parts of their vehicle. While windshield cracks and chips should always be handled by a professional auto glass repair company, there are some things that you can keep in mind when driving and parking your vehicle.

  • Whenever possible, park your car in the shade. This is overall better for your vehicle, but it is especially smart for your auto glass. Extreme heat in the summer time on your vehicle’s glass can damage your windshield over time. On a similar note, cranking up the heat onto your windshield during the winter can negatively affect your auto glass.
  • Avoid slamming your car doors. We know how kids love to slam their doors, but this can actually rattle your auto glass and potentially stress the glass. It’s also just not good for your car doors!
  • Use a microfiber cloth for glass when you are cleaning your auto glass. Microfiber cloths are meant for cleaning glass and will not scratch your glass in any way. Additionally, ammonia based cleaners will damage your auto glass over time, so you should avoid these products when cleaning your auto glass.

Carolina Windshield Centers has locations across North Carolina. Please contact us for more information!

New Auto Glass Shop in Morrisville, North Carolina

We have recently opened our fourth Carolina Windshield Centers location in Morrisville, North Carolina!

From our new location, our mobile auto glass repair specialists will be able to make on-location windshield repairs and replacements throughout the greater Raleigh-Durham area. We are proud to expand into this new area where we can provide our safe, fast, and convenient windshield replacement services! You can contact our new location at (919) 670-2885.

We also have locations in the following cities:

Charlotte, NC

Greensboro, NC

Hickory, NC