Thursday October 13th, 2011 11:12 Compare New Cars When Looking To Purchase

The most worrying experiences for people in this day and age usually involve cash. Financial security is something that many people are concerned about and one of the most daunting procedures for those of you worried about money is buying a new car. Over at you can carry out comparisons to be sure to find the best value deal at the lowest price possible.

When you decide to buy a new car you should be confident and certain of what you want. More importantly you should know that you’re getting it at the price that suits you! That’s why you should utilize the services provided by and make sure that you compare new cars by price.

Before purchasing a car it’s important to also request quotes as this will help you make your final decision, safe in the knowledge that you’ve got a brilliant deal. Doing this is really simple and only requires a few mouse clicks and keystrokes, you’ll have an amazing quote in no time at all.

You can even arrange a test drive in a new car, a very popular option. There’s no fuss or hassle, just another straightforward form for you to fill in online and then you can be driving around in your dream car, straight from a local dealership. This is a great way to assess what cars you’re interested in after comparing new car prices and getting quotes.

Take a look at all the available deals and browse around the site, make sure to take in all of the information that is listed so that you can find the best deals. Make sure to thoroughly compare prices and find the ideal car for you, at the perfect price!

Information provided by – the free car price comparison website that brings you the very best new car prices.

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Wednesday October 12th, 2011 14:02 DIY checks before an MOT

DIY Car Check

If your car’s coming up for its next MOT, there are several DIY checks you can carry out before you take it in for the real test.

The suspension is quite easy to check yourself. Simply put your weight on each corner of the car, then release. If the suspension is ok, it will settle down quickly.

Check the exhaust. Have a look underneath and check if there are any parts of the exhaust missing, and make sure nothing’s hanging loose. Start up the engine and leave the motor running while you listen to make sure the silencer is doing its job and look out for any leaks.

An important part of an MOT is checking the level of exhaust emissions, for low emission cars as much as for diesel trucks. The legal level for exhaust emissions depends on the kind of vehicle you drive, its age and the type of fuel you use. Hybrid cars, for example, produce far fewer carbon dioxide emissions than a regular diesel or petrol car. Although you can’t check your emissions level yourself, take a look. If you see a lot of smoke coming out, then you may have a faulty exhaust.

Make sure that the fuel tank, hoses and pipes don’t have any leaks. Don’t forget to look at the fuel cap – it should seal tightly and not be damaged. Remember to leave the fuel cap key with the MOT tester if you have one – they’ll need to be able to open it as part of the test.

Check the handbrake and footbrake for any visible leaks. If you have ABS, ensure the warning light is working.

Finally, check your tyres to make sure the tread is deep enough – this will be tested with a special gauge during an MOT. Tyres will also fail if they have bulges or serious cuts. Although wheels will not be removed during the MOT, the tester will examine them for damage, distortion or cracks and to see if they are securely fitted.

By carrying out these simple tests, you may be able to fix any obvious problems yourself and avoid having to put your car through a second test to pass its MOT.

Thanks to Mike Cogh for the image!

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Tuesday October 11th, 2011 11:07 Things to Think About When Buying a New Car

When looking for a new car, there are a few things that you need to take into consideration. This will help you find the best car for you and your family. Take these considerations before you start looking around, so you know the dealerships to look at and the questions to ask.

Think About Your Lifestyle

You need the car to fit your current lifestyle and family needs. Think about how many people will use the car at one time and what you require the car for. A sports car is something that most people dream of having but it is not practical for a large family. This is something to consider when you are young and have no children to think about.

However, you will also need to think about your insurance costs. While you may be able to afford the cost of a sports car and you do not have children to think about, it does not mean that you can afford the insurance premiums. Sports cars tend to have a higher premium because the drivers tend to have more collisions. Speak to your current insurance provider to find out how your policy will be affected.

Set a Budget for the Car

You need to determine the maximum price that you are looking at. This is especially important if you want to buy a car outright or you want to put down a deposit for the vehicle. The price will determine the car finance options that you have and the interest rates that you will be paying.

However, the price will also determine the type of car that you are looking for. If you have a budget of £1000, you will not get the flashy car. However, you will be able to buy a small run-around outright or put down a deposit for a second-hand car through the hire purchase.

The Maintenance Costs

This is not the first thought for many but it is something that you should consider when buying a car – especially a used car. You want a car that is reliable and will not cost over the odds to be fixed. Take some time to consider the amount of mileage that the car has already done and the number of owners it has already had.

New cars will not need as much maintenance, which is definitely something worth considering. However, you will have to pay for more upfront and the depreciation will be more the minute that you drive it off the lot. Of course, for the first three years of a car’s life, there is no need to take it for an MOT, which will also help you to cut down on the maintenance costs.

What About the Tax Costs?

Large cars cost more in tax and this is definitely something that you need to think about. Sports cars will also cost more in tax, because they need more fuel and let off more emissions. Take some time to research how much the tax will cost you when it comes to renew it. Hybrid cars cost less on tax and are usually in the lower bracket of around £20 per year.

As well as tax, you need to think about the cost of fuel. The costs of petrol and diesel are constantly rising and you will need to factor this into the type of car for you. If you do a lot of driving around, you need a car that will cost you less in fuel. While diesel costs more, it lasts longer, which is definitely something to consider.

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Tuesday October 4th, 2011 10:32 Alternatives to petrol

Just when you thought petrol prices couldn’t get any higher – they carry on doing so. While those people who considered using an alternative fuel used to be in the minority, many mainstream drivers are now searching for a better alternative to petrol or diesel.

There are a number of viable alternatives already available – here are three of the best.

Plant power

Two of the most popular alternative fuels are sourced partly from plant crops. Bioethanol is a mixture of ethanol and petrol – the blend ratio can vary, but the most commonly used blend is 80% petrol to 20% ethanol. Ethanol is produced from crops. Bioethanol is popular in countries where corn and sugarcane can be grown in vast quantities – hence the number one user is the US, followed by Brazil.

Similarly biodiesel is a blend of normal diesel and biodiesel, which is produced from crops such as rape or animal fats. As with biofuel, any vehicle including 4×4 cars and trucks can be modified to use biodiesel, so the cost to the car owner is low. The environmental downside is that both biodiesel and biofuel production rely heavily on agriculture – so put a squeeze on land use.

Halfway house
Hybrids are cars that have a petrol engine and an electric motor. The motor’s batteries are charged by regenerative braking, and plug-in hybrids can be charged while the vehicle is parked up. As the electric motor assists the engine during acceleration and can power the car alone in slow moving traffic, the fuel economy is marked. Most hybrid cars in the UK have petrol engines, so though petrol prices will still be relevant, they won’t affect you half as much.

Go electric
Electric cars don’t need petrol at all, as they are fully powered by electric motors. Instead, you’ll be more focused on electricity costs. The big disadvantage to electric cars is that they are limited by their range before they need recharging, and often don’t compare in terms of speed to other fuels.

Image copyright Robert Couse Baker

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