Car Seat Replacement After Accident

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If you have been involved in a car crash and had a child restrained in a child car seat, the seat may need to be replaced.  In April 2004, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced changes to the agency’s recommendations about replacing child safety seats following a crash. NHTSA explains:

“The change was made to ensure parents or caregivers continue to correctly restrain their children following a minor crash and to reduce the burden of unnecessary child safety seat replacement.”

NHTSA continues to advise parents and caregivers that child safety seats should be replaced if they have been involved in a moderate or severe crash.

A crash is minor — and the seat involved in it is safe for reuse — if it meets all of the following criteria:

1) A visual inspection of the child safety seat, including inspection under any easily movable seat padding, does not reveal any cracks or deformation that might have been caused by the crash.

2) The vehicle in which the child safety seat was installed was capable of being driven from the crash scene.

3) The vehicle door nearest the child safety seat was undamaged.

4) There were no injuries to any of the vehicle occupants.

5) The air bags (if any) did not deploy.

Crashes that meet all of these criteria are much less severe than the dynamic test used in compliance tests of FMVSS 213 “Child Restraint Systems” and are highly unlikely to affect future child safety seat performance. Therefore, parents and caregivers can be confident that child restraints involved in these minor crashes will continue to provide a high level of protection.

NHTSA recommend parents and caregivers check with their child seat manufacturer with regard to performance, operation, and installation of their child restraint.

Most car seat instruction booklets continue to recommend child safety seats be replaced if they have been involved in a car crash, regardless if they are in the seat or not.  Look in the car seat owner’s manual for your manufacturer’s statement of their policy.

Most insurance carriers will reimburse you for the replacement of a new car seat if it was in a crash.  Check with the insurance carrier handling the accident for more details as all policies are different.

 

***If you have any questions don’t hesitate to call Jody or Rachel our certified passenger safety techs, or email any questions to rachel.sharping@ajcollisionrepair.com***

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

(501)327-1882

Understanding Air Bags!

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Overview

In 25 years—from 1987 to 2012—frontal air bags saved 39,976 lives. That’s enough people to fill a major league ballpark.

NHTSA provides information about the safety benefits of frontal and side air bags and the importance of using seat belts—your first line of defense. We also test and provide guidance on the risks of counterfeit and defective air bags, and urge vehicle owners with recalled air bags to immediately get their air bags replaced by a dealer.

Protection

Air bags are supplemental restraints and are designed to work best in combination with seat belts. Both frontal and side-impact air bags are designed to deploy in moderate to severe crashes.
Air bags reduce the chance that an occupant’s upper body or head will strike the vehicle’s interior during a crash. To avoid an air-bag-related injury, always ensure proper seating position. Wearing your seat belt properly helps ensure that you’re properly seated.

Vehicles can be equipped with both front and side air bags (SABs). Frontal air bags have been standard equipment in all passenger cars since model year 1998 and all SUVs, pickups and vans since model year 1999. SABs are being offered as standard or optional equipment on many new passenger vehicles.

AIR BAG DEPLOYMENT

HOW AIR BAGS WORK

When there is a moderate to severe crash, a signal is sent from the air bag system’s electronic control unit to the inflator within the air bag module. An igniter in the inflator starts a chemical reaction that produces a harmless gas, which inflates the air bag within the blink of an eye – or less than 1/20th of a second. Side-impact air bags inflate even more quickly since there is less space between the occupant and the striking object, such as the interior of the vehicle, another vehicle, a tree, or a pole.

Because air bags deploy very rapidly, serious or sometimes fatal injuries can occur if the occupant is too close to – or is in direct contact with – the air bag when it first begins to deploy. Sitting as far back from the steering wheel or dashboard as possible and using seat belts help prevent occupants from being “too close” to a deploying frontal air bag.

To ensure the continued protection of occupants, used air bags should be replaced without delay by an authorized repair center before the vehicle is driven again.

 

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

Automotive Paint Colors: What Affects Color Match?

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(* we did NOT paint the vehicle above, I found the photo on the internet)

Why is auto paint color match such a difficult task?

Automotive Paint Colors: What affects color match?

In this article I will be discussing the main factors of why color match is such a difficult task. I believe if you can grasp a little bit about what auto paint colors are made of and how their application shifts color, then you could understand what causes color to change and what you need to do to match them.

There are three basic ingredients in automotive paint:

  • Resin
  • Pigment
  • Solvent

The resin is the component that holds together the pigment in suspension, provides adhesion to the surface applied, and determines the quality and paint durability.

The pigment comes in a powder form similar to concrete, and the average aftermarket automotive paint mixing system includes about 100 colors or toners to be able to mix formulas including metallic and pearl paint colors.

The solvent is what provides the transferability, without the solvent the paint would be to thick in viscosity to transfer from container to container.

So what affects color match? Now that you know the ingredients of automotive paint, I will explain what happens to color during the application.

Auto paint colors are made up of a combination of pigment colors and metallic sizes including pearls. The first challenge is the factory standard. Today, the average paint code has between three to seven alternates that are worth formulating. There is actually more but the auto paint manufacturers have narrowed them to down to keep the databases simple to use.

So why do the car manufacturers have so many variances? Most car manufacturers have three major paint suppliers. The manufacturer decides on a standard color for production and submits a painted sample to their suppliers. The paint manufacturer then produces a formula for the “standard sample” and is allowed a tolerance of plus or minus 5% when they deliver the paint.

This is the first problem because the plant in the east coast may be getting a 5% shade greener on a blue metallic standard and the plant in the west coast may be getting a 5% shade violet on the same blue metallic standard. When compared side by side, they look like a completely different color. This is the reason the paint manufacturers usually have the standard formula followed by two alternates. If the alternates are not available, the painter in the body shop usually mixes the standard formula and tints it accordingly.

The second reason for variances in paint colors is the metallic color applications. The metallic colors are now classified in 7 categories. Extra fine, fine, medium, medium coarse, coarse, and extra coarse. The metallic colors control the value (lightness and darkness) of the color similar to what white does in a pastel color.

Metallic colors will cause variances in color when applied. Temperature, paint film thickness, flash off time between coats, fluid tip sizes, speed of the spray gun, surface type (Plastic or Metal) and humidity will all cause the color to shift lighter or darker.

Why do plastic bumper covers change color? Every once in a while we are trying to deliver a car and the customer will not take it because the bumper looks different than the car. The most amazing thing is that the bumper and the front end of the car was painted at the same time, with the same gun, same air pressure, same temperature and the same paint.

How do you explain the bumper color change to the customer? Plastic bumpers will always change color especially in metallic colors. The plastic has a static charge and the metallic paint will settle different than on the sheet metal parts, causing pigment flotation that will shift the color darker or lighter. The other reason is surface temperature, if the sheet metal is colder, the bumper will look lighter, if the sheet metal is hotter than the bumper, the color on the bumper will look darker. The third reason is flex additive. If the clear coat is applied on the bumper with a flex additive, it will shift the color slightly.

 

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

Robotic vests gain acceptance in industry…

News

A vest that acts as an external skeleton might be one answer to reducing occupational health injuries.

The vest, developed by Ekso Biotics, is currently being used by the Ford Motor Company and has been widely tested since 2010.

Workers in industry and construction frequently have jobs that require them to keep their arms raised and outstretched for hours, often using tools while they are doing so. At Ford, according to Ekso, workers in repetitive overhead tasks raise their arms an average of 4,600 times per day or a million times a year.

The wear-and-tear on shoulders is dramatic.  Workers in repetitive lifting jobs frequently have shoulder injury and chronic pain. About 13.6 percent of all workplace injuries are shoulder injuries, according to a study by the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI). Shoulder injuries cause a median number of 24 days off work, the greatest number for any body part. Along with this, the incidence of chronic pain is 41 percent, commonly in the 45- to 64-year-old age group. Construction and manufacturing workers often are forced to end their careers early because of pain and injury.

For employers, these statistics are daunting. A NCCI study that looked at 4.2 million workman’s compensation claims from 1996 to 2000, showed that shoulder injuries were the most costly.

Enter the EksoVest. The 9.5 pound vest can be strapped on in seconds like a jacket. It is a wearable robot, that works to support the weight of the worker’s arms, putting less strain on their shoulders. The vest provides 5 to 15 pounds of lift assistance per arm, noticeably supporting overhead tasks.

According to Ekso, “By reducing the strain on a workers body, he/she not only feels better at the end of every day, it also reduces the likelihood that the worker will sustain injury. Jobs get completed to a higher level of quality, in a shorter amount of time, increasing both productivity and morale.”

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

Facts to teach your new teen driver

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Teen drivers are inexperienced, usually distracted, and impulsive, statistics show.

That’s every single teenager, from the A student to the wild child.

That won’t come as news to the insurance industry, which charges high rates for teen  drivers. But, teens might not know the dangers of their own inexperience. Parents who are teaching their kids to drive might point out some sad truths.

First, teens have a lot of car accidents and car accidents kill.

Of all age groups, 16-year-olds have the highest crash rates, and a full third of all deaths among 13- to 19-year-olds are likely to occur in a car crash. In fact, more than 3,000 people die in car accidents every single day.

Second, teens are unusually distracted behind the wheel.

According to dosomething.org, more than half of teen drivers admit they use a phone while driving.

More worrisome is that texting can take eyes off the road for almost five seconds — a lot of time for something to go wrong. Car and Driver Magazine did a study on this and found texting while driving had the same effect as driving drunk.

Teens must learn to leave their phones unanswered while driving. That’s a lesson adults can learn too since 27 percent of adults have read or sent a text message while driving.

Third, driving around teen friends can be deadly. Fatality rates increase with each extra passengers in the car. It’s dangerous for the driver and for the teen rider. Fewer than half of teens say they would speak up if the driver was scaring them.

Teens must also recognize that their inexperience can get them into trouble. Driving in poor conditions such as snow, fog, or rain can be dangerous and teens must give the task their complete attention.

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

Tips for Driving in Snow

News

-Clear snow and ice from windows, lights, the hood, and the roof before driving

-Leave plenty of room for stopping.

-Don’t try to out drive the conditions. Remember the posted speed limits are for dry pavement.

-Know the current road conditions.

-Brake early and correctly. It takes more time and distance to stop in adverse conditions.

-Be wary of bridges. They freeze first, making them more dangerous than the approach road.

-Exit ramps sometimes have less anti-icing material than the main line. Be aware of this when exiting the highway.

-Don’t use “cruise control” driving in wintry conditions. Even roads that look clear can have sudden slippery spots. Using your brake on these spots will deactivate cruise control, possibly causing you to lose control of your vehicle.

-Many 4×4 vehicles are heavier than passenger vehicles. This means it takes longer to stop than passenger vehicles. Don’t get overconfident in your 4×4 vehicle. Be wary of your 4×4 vehicle’s traction.

-Look further ahead in traffic than normal.

-Trucks are heavier than cars, making their brake time slower. Avoid cutting quickly in front of them.

-Remember to slow down and always wear your seat belt.

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

5 Things YOU need to know about YOUR car!

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5 things everyone should know about their car

With the amount of money we spend on the payments, maintenance, and repair of our cars, you’d think we’d have a better relationship with our vehicles. But understanding our cars—how they work, how to care for them, repair costs—can be overwhelming. All the parts, fluids, guidelines to follow, and things that can go wrong make cars and repair garages seem intimidating, but they don’t have to be.

You don’t need to know everything about your car but you should have a handle on some of the basic elements. To help you feel more confident as a car owner, here are five things you should know before you get behind the wheel:

  1. Year, make and model

The first thing you should know about your car is the year it was manufactured, the make of the car, and the specific model. This seems like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised at the amount of people who do not know this information. Often they are mistaken on the year or the model, which can lead to big mistakes. Fluids, parts, and the accessories to repair and maintain your car are all based on the car’s year, make and model, so it’s critical to know the exact information. Design, construction and models of cars can change significantly in a year, and the parts required for your car will as well.

  1. VIN

Your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is your car’s fingerprint. It is a 17-digit number that identifies your car’s manufacture date, place, make, model, engine size, etc. The VIN stays with the car throughout its life. You need to know where to find this number, but you don’t need to memorize it. The easiest way to find it is to stand outside of the vehicle on the driver’s side and look at the corner of the dashboard where it meets the windshield. Your VIN is useful when talking to mechanics and insurance companies. You can use your VIN to look up information if you want to purchase a car or buy parts for it.

  1. Maintenance schedule

Your best bet for keeping your car running well is sticking to your car’s specific maintenance schedule. Your schedule will tell you things like when to change your oil (it’s no longer 3,000 miles or every three months), when to check your fluids and when to rotate your tires. Each car has its own maintenance schedule that should be followed to maintain optimal performance, health and longevity of your car. Your maintenance schedule is in your owner’s manual or in the separate booklet that comes with your owner’s manual. Read it and strictly follow the recommendations for checking and replacing those parts or fluids in your car.

  1. Tire pressure

Proper tire pressure is probably the most ignored maintenance concern on our cars. When that light pops up on the dashboard, we often wait until we need to fill up the gas tank. Then that time comes, and we don’t have any change for air or we just don’t feel like doing it. Truth be told, I hate putting air in my tires like I hate pumping gas, but ignoring this light only causes us to be more likely to get a flat or blow out, pick up a nail in the tire or wear our tires out faster. Stop this bad habit now because it can decrease the life of our tires and force us to buy them more frequently. Tires are expensive, but some can last you over 50,000 miles if you take care of them correctly. On the flip side, make sure to never overfill your tires!

  1. Engine light

While we may experience major anxiety when dashboard lights come on, they are a window into our car’s health. I always got nervous when a dashboard light would pop up because I dreaded what the mechanic would say was the cause. Your owner’s manual will tell you what your dashboard lights mean, as they vary among car manufacturers, but they may not express how important or insignificant certain lights are. I separate dashboard lights into three categories:

Red: Get help now! These are sometimes related to passenger safety.

Yellow: Check this out as soon as possible!

Green or blue: Go or activated!

Understanding these key pieces of information is your first step to feeling in control of your car, talking to a mechanic with confidence and making better choices for your car’s maintenance. Now grab your maintenance manual and stay up-to-date!

 

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

National Transferable Lifetime Warranty

News

Have you ever wondered about the warranty of repairs on your vehicle?  Starting out in 2018, we are starting a new warranty program with the NTLW!  Watch this video to find out more and if you have more questions give us a call at (501)205-1218.

 

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

Tips for driving on icy roads

News

 

-The #1 icy road driving tip: Reduce your speed.

Slowing down is the most important thing to do when driving on ice and snow. High speeds make it both easy to lose control and difficult to stop. You should never be driving faster than 45mph in any vehicle when roads are icy – not even on highways! In many cases, much slower speeds are necessary. You can slide off of the road on certain types of more treacherous icing – like black ice – at 10mph or less! If you’re fishtailing or sliding at all, it means you are going too fast for the conditions.

You don’t have the skill to drive at normal speeds on icy roads.

A factor in many of the serious and fatal crashes is overconfidence in one’s abilities and/or equipment (traction control, antilock brakes, stability control, winter tires). Some feel that they have sufficient experience in winter driving, and can therefore continue normally (at or above the speed limit). But a fishtail on ice that occurs at highway speeds is usually unrecoverable by even the most quick-witted and experienced drivers. Practicing slow-speed slides in parking lots is useless for what happens to a vehicle at highway speed. A person who enters a high-speed slide will quickly learn that it is something they can’t handle – but all too late.

-The #2 icy road driving tip: Don’t drive on icy roads.

The best way to avoid an accident on an icy road is to simply stay off the roads until the threat passes. Nothing can inconvenience you more than a wreck or getting stuck!

-Wear your seat belt!

Even though wearing your seat belt should already be a no-brainer at all times, during the winter it’s even more critical. An alarming number of road ice fatalities occur with minor accidents where the vehicle occupants were not wearing seat belts.

-Pay attention to the weather.

Make the weather forecast part of your daily routine during the winter. Awareness of conditions will help you be more prepared.

-Go easy on your brakes

Brake application is a common trigger of slides that result in a loss of vehicle control. ABS (antilock brakes) do not work well on ice and snow, and often will lock up your wheels regardless. Sliding wheels are uncontrollable, that is, steering input will not change the vehicle’s direction if the wheels are sliding.

-Turn into a slide

If you’re fishtailing or sliding, it usually means you are going too fast. Reduce your speed so you won’t need to worry about this! Most high-speed slides are difficult to correct successfully. If you’re caught off guard and begin sliding, turn your wheels in the direction that the rear of your car is sliding. It helps to look with your eyes where you want the car to go, and turn the steering wheel in that direction. It is easy to steer too far, causing the car to slide in the other direction. If this happens (called overcorrecting), you’ll need to turn in the opposite direction.

-Icy road accidents happen in multiples

Your own accident is sometimes not the greatest threat to you – additional out-of-control vehicles often are.

-Don’t stop for accidents or stranded vehicles along an icy roadway.

Being a Good Samaritan is a noble thing, but on an icy road, it can cause more problems than it solves. Parking on the side of an icy highway can cause passing drivers to brake and lose control, putting the lives of everyone involved in danger. Unless the stranded driver is in immediate danger, the best thing you can do is contact the authorities (call 911), who are equipped to safely block the road or divert traffic while a tow truck can do the job properly.

-Avoid hills or other dangerous roads during icy conditions.

The laws of physics are unforgiving! If you attempt to tackle a steep enough incline, there is nothing you can do to stop gravity from taking its toll.

 

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

Driving in the Rain

News

Singing in the rain is fun. But driving? For some people, it’s anxiety-producing. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, there are on average more than 950,000 automobile crashes each year due to wet pavement, resulting in approximately 4,700 deaths and 384,000 injuries.

 

But being behind the wheel and a rain-splattered windshield doesn’t have to be a white-knuckled, nerve-racking experience. Brent Praeter, a supervising instructor at D&D Driving School, Inc. and a member of the Driving School Association of the Americas, both in Kettering, Ohio, offers these tips for driving in a downpour:

 

Think. “Many people drive subconsciously, out of habit,” says Praeter. “And when it rains, they often don’t adjust their thinking.” When conditions are less than ideal, drivers need to stay alert and focused on what’s going on around them.

Turn on those headlights. It’s the law in all states to turn on headlights when visibility is low, and many states also require having the headlights on when the windshield wipers are in use. Praeter says that well-working wipers and relatively new (not threadbare) tires also are must-haves when driving in rain.

Beware of hydroplaning. That’s the technical term for what occurs when your tires are getting more traction on the layer of water on the road than on the road itself—the result is that your car begins to slide uncontrollably. It’s easy enough to hydroplane: All you need is one-twelfth of an inch of rain on the road and a speed of more than 35 miles per hour. If you start to hydroplane, let off the accelerator slowly and steer straight until you regain control.

Turn off cruise control. Ironically, on rain- or snow- slick surfaces, cruise control may cause you to lose control. You might think it’ll help you stay at one steady speed, but if you hydroplane while you’re in cruise control, your car will actually go faster.

Slow down. “Speed limit signs are designed for ideal conditions, says Praeter, ‘and that means driving when you have little traffic and good visibility.” That’s hardly the environment you’re driving in when it’s raining, so let up on the accelerator and allow more time to get to your destination.

About

A & J Collision Repair is a full service auto body repair shop. We are located at 1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive in Conway Arkansas 72032. Come by and visit or give us a call at 501.205.1218.
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