Steve Mills of CV Car Valeting answers your questions: “It’s the areas down the side of the front seats which are so difficult to get access to. It’s a bit like losing things down the back of the sofa! They’re never seen again. Any suggestions for tackling this irritating problem would be gratefully received.” Steve says: “You need a good hoover with good suction (I use a Henry) and you will need a crevice tool to get down the side of the seat. By moving the seat back and forward you should be able to get to all the areas, also you can get to these areas from the back of the seat.” “Chewing gum on the back seat, how do you clean it out of the material safely?” Steve says: “You will need to freeze the gum (you can buy this from a car accessory shop) and slowly lift it off, it is a slow process.” “I ferry around lots of hockey players and get a lot of sand on the carpet of the car which is really tough to get out with a standard vacuum.” Steve says: “You need a good vac with a good suction and a crevice tool and a small stick. If you tap the carpet you will rise the sand to the surface and then you can vac it up.” […]
Volvo V40 By Tim Barnes-Clay
Gone are the days of ‘wardrobe on wheels’ or ‘only teachers drive those’ jokes. Volvo now has some seriously stylish cars in its stable – and the V40 is the latest one.
Like all Volvos it is well built but this has a definite athletic appearance about it. From the twin tailpipes to the low profile tyres on 18 inch rims the V40 D4 SE obviously means business.
But does it deliver? Absolutely. The 1984cc five cylinder, 20 valve oil-burner churns out 175bhp, so 0-62 comes in a rapid 8.6 seconds. The wide car sits low on the road and takes corners on rails. The diesel rattle is barely noticeable, even on start up, and, as with all Swedish-made cars, the seats are ultra-supportive on long commutes.
The V40 isn’t just about performance and grip though; it also provides enough space for four-up. The boot, although not massive, is decent enough to shove in everything a young family might need – from a week’s worth of shopping to a couple of baby buggies and all the gear that goes with young kids.
Of course, safety is never an issue with Volvo and the V40 is no different. It is the safest car in its class, having achieved the highest score ever recorded by EuroNCAP in recent crash tests. This is thanks, in part, to pioneering technologies such as the world’s first pedestrian airbag and Volvo’s autonomous braking system, City Safety, which also now qualifies for reduced insurance premiums.
Ford B-MAX 1.6 TDCi Titanium By Tim Barnes-Clay FORD IS on a mission to please families. At least, that’s the impression I got at the all-new B-MAX launch this week. And it’s not a bad objective to have. You see, the B-MAX is aimed at people just like me – parents of young kids who need their motor to be spacious and practical – not just fashionable. If you’ve never had to cope with a struggling two year old then you won’t know what I’m on about, but seriously, trying to fit your grumpy toddler into a car seat isn’t the first thing your aching back wants on a Monday morning. So, Ford came up with a solution – the ‘Easy Access Door System’. Research was painstaking; it involved engineers going ‘undercover’ to observe drivers in their daily routine – going shopping or picking up their children from school. The answer they came up with combines conventional, hinged front doors and rear sliding doors, in a new body design. This integrates the traditional central pillar structure into the front and rear doors, rather than forming part of the body shell itself, and creates a huge, clear opening – more than 1.5 metres wide. This is around twice the width offered by competitors with alternative door concepts and makes it significantly easier to enter or exit the rear seats, attend to your children in their child seats, or load and unload shopping. […]
Going Green By James Baggott, editor of Car Dealer Magazine (CarDealerMag.co.uk) Top tips on turning your motoring life eco! There are some eco-warriors out there who believe the humble automobile is the devil on wheels. But in recent years car manufacturers have worked hard to change the car’s planet killing image with hybrids, electric vehicles and fuel-sipping eco models like VW’s Bluemotion range. But what if you can’t afford a new car and still want to go green? Well, fortunately there are ways you can cut your carbon footprint – and it doesn’t have to mean walking! Simply thinking about how and when you use your car, the products you use and the way you look after your vehicle can make a real difference. Simply planning trips to coincide with one another, not going out especially to buy fuel, and sharing a commute can all help. But it’s not just about how and when you use your motor – just as important is the way it’s looked after. Here are our practical tips to make car ownership greener. […]
Do Car Protection Products Really Work? By Steve Mills CV Car Valeting So you’ve decided to change your car and it’s time to complete the paperwork at the dealership. It’s at this moment the sales person will mention a fantastic paint & fabric protection system that you should pay to have applied to your vehicle all for a very reasonable £400. You will be given a whole list of benefits that this system will provide, and receive a guarantee for 4 years if the aftercare procedure is carried out. So do you sign on the dotted line? Many people do, as the amount is just added to the finance agreement and the sales person gets a nice bonus for selling it. Do they work? Yes they do, but only if the correct preparation of the bodywork surface has been completed prior to sealant application. Your new vehicle may have travelled many miles on road transport and by rail to reach the dealership. It may have been stored at the docks or near a rail depot on its way to you, and during this time it could have been exposed to industrial fallout, metal contamination or other airborne debris. The only way to remove these is by using specific automotive decontamination chemicals and by claying the paintwork surface to ensure a clean surface prior to applying the sealant. At the dealership your car will only be washed, dried and sealant applied. Your car will be one of many that will go through this process and the contract valeter will be allowed around 2-3 hours to complete the work, which is nowhere near enough time to produce a comprehensive and professional result. It should take at least a day to complete the work to the required standard including a multistage wash process, using safe wash procedure and no harsh chemicals. With regards to the aftercare, you will be provided with a case containing products to maintain your vehicle’s protection including the conserver car shampoo. Not many people realise that a trip through the supermarket or roadside carwash is enough to strip the sealant off due to the strong chemicals that are applied during the wash process and your 4 year guarantee could now be null and void. These sealant products do work, but the key to their success is in the preparation of the vehicle before application, together with a safe and ongoing aftercare process. […]