HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU CHANGE YOUR OIL FILTER?

Here’s a question: How often should you change your oil filter? If you’ve ever wondered just what’s in that little round canister called an oil filter, have a look. Those manila-envelope colored pieces you see are the outer edges of material that traps contaminants — things that can clog and damage the working parts of your vehicle’s engine. If you look in your vehicle’s owner’s manual, you’ll probably see a recommendation that you change your oil at certain intervals based on months and miles, and you may find that the manufacturer recommends you change the filter every other oil change. You might have a relative, neighbor or friend who tells you that they go even longer between oil filte

ELLIOTT FINISHES 19TH AT ATLANTA MOTOR SPEEDWAY

Chase Elliott and the No. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS team finished 19th in Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. Elliott took the green flag in 22nd at his home track Atlanta Motor Speedway. The driver of the No. 9 wasted little time advancing through the field as he climbed to 11th by Lap 8. He continued to knock on the door of the top 10 for the remainder of the segment, finishing Stage 1 in 14th. Thanks to quick work by the NAPA AUTO PARTS team on pit road between segments, Elliott began Stage 2 in ninth. He fell just outside of the top ten prior to making a scheduled green-flag stop and returned to the track in 11th. As tires continued to wear down, Elliott slipped to 16t

WHY DO GOOD STARTERS GO BAD?

Starters rarely fail, but being an integral component in the starting system, you’ll know it when they do. And despite the rarity, there are a number of ways and reasons a starter very quickly becomes anything but. Luckily, knowing what you’re dealing with can help diagnose or preserve the life of your current starter and help you answer a vital question: Why do good starters go bad? Thriving Startup A starter is an electromagnetic actuator comprised of several mechanisms working together to turn electrical energy into enough mechanical energy to “turn over” an entire engine. It actually comes down to a tiny, but strong pinion gear that thrusts toward the engine and spins, engaging the flywh

5 THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW ABOUT CABIN AIR FILTERS

Yes, unhealthy and unpleasant air is everywhere, but why allow it to funnel into your car and make even the shortest drives unbearable? A new cabin air filter improves the air quality in your car dramatically. Here are 5 things you may not know about cabin air filters and how they make your vehicle a healthier, more comfortable place to be. The Air Inside Your Vehicle Can Be 6 Times More Polluted Than The Air Outside: Without proper filtration, the air inside the passenger cabin can be teaming with allergens, pollutants and other disgusting microbes. That suggests a significant health risk for children, the elderly and more than 40 million allergy-sensitive North Americans. Air Quality Threa

3 BRAKE INNOVATION TECHNOLOGIES TO LOVE

Most vehicles come with a hydraulic braking system, which kicks in the moment you apply force to the brake pedal. Energy is immediately transferred to all four brakes, bringing your vehicle to a safe stop. While this system has worked well for generations, cutting-edge brake innovation technologies may soon change the way your future vehicle stops. What’s not to love about a car, truck or crossover that reduces your chances of an accident? 1. Brake-by-Wire When we drive, most of us give little thought to how the brake system works. Step on the brake pedal and a connected lever pushes a piston into the master cylinder, which is filled with hydraulic fluid. The fluid flows along a network of p

6 REASONS TO RECYCLE A CAR BATTERY

There are some compelling reasons to recycle a car battery. While these batteries are harmless under the hood of your vehicle, they can be tremendously damaging to the environment if not properly discarded. Below, we’ll share six reasons for recycling this critical automotive component. Why Recycle Your Car’s Battery? Recycling your car’s battery makes sense for the following reasons: 1. It protects groundwater from heavy-metal poisoning. Car batteries contain heavy metals such as lead. According to information published by Sciencing, if car batteries are deposited in landfills, these heavy metals can create toxins that can poison our water supply. The lead contained in these batteries can p

WHAT ARE WINTER WIPER BLADES? A SEASONAL PRIMER

What are winter wiper blades? You’ve no doubt seen this item lurking on the shelves of your local auto parts store, but a quick inspection doesn’t necessarily reveal the key differences between these wipers and the spring/summer/fall set you’re used to running. Why would you consider swapping in a different set of wiper blades once the snow starts to fall and the cold weather sets in? Is it really necessary, or merely optional, from a safety standpoint? Let’s take a closer look. Difference in Design In order for a wiper to be effective, it has to make strong contact with the windshield or the back glass of your vehicle. During warmer weather, this isn’t much of a challenge, but winter introd

BENEFITS OF CAR COVERS OVER TARPS

There’s a clear advantage to having a garage if you own one or more cars. A garage protects your vehicle from the elements when you’re not driving it, but not everyone has access to one. In that case, a car cover offers the protection your ride needs. There are several options available, but the benefits of car covers ought to make you think twice before you use a tarp or leave your vehicle uncovered. You could just leave your vehicle outside, which is indeed what almost everyone does, but this can be a problem. The sun will ruin your vehicle’s interior, not to mention any paint that has clear coat damage. Bird bombs (poop) contain acids that corrode your car’s finish. Natural and industrial

RED DIRT HOT ROD – SUPERCHARGED 1969 PLYMOUTH ROAD RUNNER

Plans sometimes have a way of snowballing, especially when it comes to building a car. Just about every gearhead has a story about how “it started out as a brake job and turned into a complete restoration”, or something to that effect. This 1969 Plymouth Road Runner is absolutely one of those stories. It rolled into the Red Dirt Rodz studio as a mildly restored original muscle car. It had shiny blue paint, a running 383 and bone-stock interior. Owner Joe McCalla III wanted to freshen some things up and to make it his own. So a deal was made, and the build was on. The original plan was to add power disc brakes, an Edelbrock Performer RPM Power Package, and a fresh interior. A good plan, and e

A QUICK HISTORY OF WINDSHIELD WIPERS

Curious about the history of windshield wipers? Was there ever a time when this most basic — and seemingly necessary — aspect of automotive safety equipment wasn’t a common feature on every vehicle? It might surprise you that not only is the answer to that question “yes,” but there have been a number of improvements and innovations that have guided the evolution of the humble wiper to its modern form. Let’s take a quick look at the path that’s been taken, and the reasons behind current wiper design. It Began on a Trolley Before cars, there were other vehicles that needed to see ahead of them, too. In fact, the history of windshield wipers begins on the trolley tracks, not the highway, after

USING SNOW TIRES: ARE TWO SNOW TIRES ENOUGH?

In northern climes, winter typically brings freezing temperatures, which can turn benign precipitation into deadly slippery road conditions. Summer tires and some all-season tires aren’t flexible enough for cold-weather traction. Using snow tires, made of softer compounds, can restore vital traction so you can drive even when the roads are cold and slippery. When it comes to using snow tires, for whatever reasons, many drivers believe it’s enough to put two snow tires on the drive wheels only. The thinking is basically this: If the drive wheels have the best traction, then you won’t get stuck. In certain cases, this is true. What if you’re trying to power your way through the snow bank the p

CAN YOU CLEAN AN OXYGEN SENSOR?

An oxygen sensor is an important part of your vehicle’s emission control system. Simply put, an oxygen sensor measures the amount of emissions released from your vehicle and sends that information to your car’s management computer located within the engine. Your car has at least two sensors, and when one of them goes bad, you need to do something about it. Can you clean an oxygen sensor? No, despite what you might have heard or read, such sensors should be replaced when they become faulty. Locating Your Oxygen Sensors Likely, you won’t know something is wrong with an oxygen sensor until an emergency code appears on the dashboard. Otherwise, your car may run poorly with a noticeable drop in f

ELLIOTT FINISHES EIGHTH IN SECOND DUEL AT DAYTONA

Chase Elliott and the No. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS team will start 18th in the 61st running of the Daytona 500 after finishing eighth in the second Duel of the night at Daytona International Speedway. Elliott and the NAPA team started the second Duel of Thursday evening the front row alongside teammate Alex Bowman. Elliott maintained his runner-up position behind Bowman for the first 12 laps of the race before heading to pit road for a fuel only green-flag stop. On Lap 15, the 23-year-old driver found himself in the inside lane without help in the draft, which caused him to fall back in the pack outside of the top 10. By Lap 25, he had moved back up to ninth as the field settled into single-file ra

ELLIOTT, NAPA TEAM POST FOURTH-FASTEST TIME IN DAYTONA 500 QUALIFYING

Chase Elliott and the No. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS team posted a speed of 193.782 mph in Daytona 500 qualifying. The effort does not lock in Elliott’s starting position for next Sunday’s race; however, he will start second in the second Duel qualifying race Thursday evening, which will officially set the lineup for next Sunday’s Daytona 500. The driver of the No. 9 and his three Hendrick Motorsports teammates (William Byron, Jimmie Johnson, Alex Bowman) qualified first, second, third and fourth. It marks the first time in history that one team’s drivers have earned each of the top four spots in Daytona 500 qualifying. “It’s a cool deal. Everybody knows qualifying down here is such a reflection upon

THE BENEFITS OF AN ALTERNATOR OVER A DC GENERATOR

You can produce electric power either with a direct current (DC) generator or an alternator, which uses an alternating current (AC). There was a time when the automotive world used DC generators, but that time has long since passed. The benefits of an alternator make it the preferred choice over the old DC generators. Despite being replaced by alternators, DC generators or dynamos are the less complicated of the two. They generate power with simple mechanical motion. As long as the shaft keeps turning, then the generator produces electricity. An alternator is more complicated. This is because it needs to convert AC to DC, which adds an extra step to the process. Despite its added complexity,

HOW TO PICK THE BEST COMPACT SHOP VACUUM TO HANDLE YOUR MESS

Think of vacuuming your car as more than just cleaning, but as an important piece of regular maintenance. Dirt and grime gets tracked into your car with every trip. As it builds up, the debris wears on the fabric fibers, leaving your interior looking sullied and shabby. With a compact shop vacuum (the most popular brand being Shop-Vac®) you can quickly clean your seats and carpet without having to make a trip to the car wash. Not all shop vacuums are made the same; they range in size, power and features. To pick the Shop-Vac® for you, start by selecting the power and size that matches your needs. From there, narrow your selection down by looking at how easy the vacuum is to use and empty, an

DISC VS. DRUM BRAKES: PROS AND CONS

When considering the differences between disc and drum brakes, what facts do car owners need to keep in mind? There are pros and cons associated with each braking system. Let’s take a closer look at both braking systems to give you a better understanding of disc vs. drum brakes. Drum Brakes A drum brake consists of a small round drum that contains pistons and two brake shoes. The drum rotates next to the car’s wheel. When the driver depresses the brake pedal, pressurized brake fluid is sent to the drum brake, and it forces the pistons to push into the brake shoes. This action causes the brake shoes to press against the sides of the drum, creating friction that slows the spinning of the wheel

4 ALTERNATOR REPLACEMENT TIPS THAT WILL SAVE YOU TIME AND TROUBLE

Looking for alternator replacement tips? While this job might feel daunting at first, it’s actually one of the more stress-free DIY tasks you can accomplish with your vehicle. Most of the time, you can remove your old alternator and swap in a new one using basic hand tools you probably already have in your garage. There are a few tips that can help the process go that much smoother, however, and also give you peace of mind that you’ve got the job done right. 1. Disconnect That Battery The alternator replacement tip that might seem obvious, but is easy to forget, is to ensure that your vehicle’s negative battery cable has been disconnected before you begin the work. With the alternator playin

ZAMORA JOINS BMR FOR 2019 IN NASCAR K&N PRO SERIES

Bill McAnally Racing (BMR) is set to make history again, this time with two female competitors behind the wheel of its Toyota Camrys in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West in 2019. Brittney Zamora has joined BMR for the 2019 season, competing in the No. 99 ENEOS / NAPA Filters Toyota Camry. “We are lucky to have the opportunity to add a quality driver of Brittney’s prestige to our team for 2019,” said BMR President Bill McAnally. “We are already looking forward to the competition meetings because this may be as talented of a group as we have ever had on this team.” Zamora, a TRD development driver, is a 19-year-old, second-generation driver from Kennewick Washington. In 2018, Zamora won the Washi

KRAUS READIES FOR THIRD SEASON AT BMR IN 2019

Derek Kraus will return for a third season at Bill McAnally Racing (BMR) in 2019 where he will pilot the No. 16 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Kraus will also make a jump to the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series and compete in BMR’s No. 19 ENEOS Toyota Tundra in select events. Kraus led the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West in 2018 in victories (four), poles (five) and laps-led (717). “Derek has quickly developed into a contender in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series,” said BMR President Bill McAnally. “It’s been great to be a part of his development and we look forward to continuing that role with him.” The 17-year-old from Stratford, Wisconsin, is ready for an exciting 2019 s

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