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Archives for April 2018

Declutter Your Garage

Declutter your garage

Is your garage the place that gathers all your household and vehicle cast off items?  Unless you are in the 1% of people who have a garage floor clean enough to eat off of, most of us find clutter builds up over time in our garage. Cold, long winters mean we pile stuff up, knowing we’ll have to spend some serious time cleaning up later once the warm weather arrives.

Guess what?

The warm weather is here, and it’s time to declutter your garage. Choose a nice day with a light breeze, so you can open the garage door. Enlist help from family members, while working methodically through these tips to a cleaner, more organized garage.

Tips to Declutter Your Garage

  1. Create walking space: If your garage is so cluttered you can’t walk or move around, haul things outside while you get organized.
  2. Keep items you use: Items you use frequently all year long should be kept in your garage such as your air compressor, tool box, and maybe your bikes.
  3. Store seasonal items: No sense in stepping around sleds and ice skates in July. Store items in a separate shed, storage room in your basement, garage rafters, totes, or even walls of your garage.
  4. Reduce: While this is a  kind word for getting rid of items, many things need-not go in the garbage. Donate those old training wheels or snowmobile helmets you no longer need.
  5. Find homes for odd items: Do you have a collection of coffee cups building up in your garage that simply need to hitch a ride into the dishwasher? Spend some time putting things away around your house and yard that don’t belong in the garage
  6. Return what you can: Call that neighborhood kid over to get his sweatshirt he left 9 months ago and forgot to come back and get. Return the items you’ve borrowed from friends.
  7. Use hooks and nails to hang as many items on the garage walls as possible, up and out of your way.
  8. Designate totes, baskets, or boxes to gather smaller items like toys and lawn games.
  9. Restock your vehicle: If items were taken out of your vehicle and not returned, make sure you put them back before you need them. Double check you have jumper cables, tow rope, tire gauge, ice scraper, etc in the trunk of your vehicle.
  10. Recycle what you can: Never throw anything that can be recycled. Now days you can recycle almost everything. Batteries, tires, pop cans, wine corks, crayons, computers, etc should all be disposed of properly.
  11. Find a junk service: If you have a large amount of clutter that can’t be donated or pawned off on someone, you will need a junk collection service that will know how, what, and where to properly dispose of miscellaneous clutter.
  12. Reuse: If you have an old cupboard from a remodeling project you could use in the garage, or some shelving units to help you store things, repurpose and use items you already have.

Do you have any tips for decluttering and organizing a garage? We’d love you to share your tips.

How NOT to Lock Your Keys in the Car

lock keys in carTend to lock keys in car?

If you have ever locked your keys in your car, you know the feeling – helplessness, panic , disgust. Then, anxiety and realization of what it will cost you to get a locksmith to come to your rescue. Here are some ideas on how to avoid the situation of locked keys in your car all together:

  1. Pay attention to the beeping in your car that means your keys are in the ignition. It is not just there to annoy you, it is warning you to bring your keys with you.
  2. Never take your keys out of the ignition and place somewhere else in your car. Bring your keys with you as you get out of the car. Have a spot where you consistently place your keys, so you know where they are in a hurry.
  3. Don’t let your kids play with your car keys! As obvious as this may sound, it happens often and is a safety issue also. Kids are notorious for starting panic alarms on keypads, and even putting the keys in the ignition or locking themselves in the car with the keys.
  4. Always have a spare key handy. Whether this is in your home, wallet or purse, with a friend, or strategically placed in a well-hidden location under your car with a magnetic key holder, a spare key can save you when you need it most.

AAA or other auto clubs with roadside assistance are great to have if you run into frequent car problems, like a flat tire or locking your keys in your car. You may also want to check with your insurance carrier to see if your policy includes lockouts.

If you do lock your keys in your car, don’t panic. Although most local police departments do not perform the unlocking service any more, there are other options. If you have a newer car, you can call the local dealership with your VIN number, and they can make you a new key. Another option would be to call a local locksmith to get your car open.

Tell us about a time you locked your keys in your car. What did you do to get your keys back?

Can potholes cause flat tires?

Have you noticed an extraordinary number of potholes this spring? If you have, you are not alone. Not only does it seems like there are potholes everywhere, many are wider and deeper than usual. Hit one while you are driving, and you are bound to notice! In all the years of helping people with tires, we’ve never seen so many problems from potholes as we’re seeing now.

Potholes, Everywhere!

While hitting potholes doesn’t necessarily spell disaster, they can cause problems that take a little while for you to notice.

To check for any damage caused by pot holes, we recommend that you take a look at your tires. If your vehicle has lower profile tires (many new vehicles do) then there is less rubber between the tire and rim. When you hit a pothole or many potholes, the cords inside the tire break. While you won’t see the broken cords inside the tire, you will notice a bulge protruding on the outside of your tire. If you notice an outward bulge on your tire, get the tire off your vehicle so you don’t have a blowout while driving. However, if you notice a bulge in (inward indenting) it’s not as critical.

Another way to check for possible damage caused by potholes is to drive at a slow speed. While you are driving, pay attention to the steering wheel. If you feel a slight (or not so slight) back-and-forth motion on the steering wheel, that is an indication of a separated tire, and a bulge on the tread. Have your tires checked right away.

If you are not sure what you are seeing, or would like us to help you inspect your tires, we can do that for you. You don’t have to endure the battle of the bulge alone. Your TireZoo Crew is here to help!

Choosing Tire Brand: So Many Brands

Which do I buy? GoodYear has good ads, but my dad always bought Michelin. My friend says Firestone are the best. How do I decide which brand of tire to buy for my vehicle?

Which brand do I buy?

They’re all great tires.  Finding the right tire for your vehicle and situation is most important. Equally as important is the type of driving you do. Spending more money and buying a specific brand of tire doesn’t mean the tires will serve you better than cheaper tires.

A lot has to do with speed rating. At the Tire Zoo, we always ask what type of driving you do, which helps determine what tire is best for you.

We don’t want to see you throw extra money out the window, so let us take the time to explain the difference to you, listen to what you have to say, and tell us about your needs. Together we’ll find the right brand of tire for your situation and not let you spend too much.