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4 entries from January 2013

Tire Inflation and Winter Driving

Winter Tires
Photo: iStockphoto

We've talked about how important winter tires are to driving safety, but tire inflation can play just as important a role.

According to Transport Canada:

"[Tire] underinflation increases rolling resistance, which reduces tread life and increases fuel consumption. It can also lead to sudden tire failure. Without enough air, the sides of a tire bend and flex too much. This builds up heat, which can cause serious damage. Operating a vehicle with just one tire underinflated by 56 kPa (8 psi) can reduce the life of the tire by 15,000 km and can increase the vehicle’s fuel consumption by 4%."

In the winter, cold temperatures cause tires to lose pressure, leading to underinflated tires. Stay on top on your tire pressure with these tips:

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Letting Your Car Do The Driving?

Car design
Photo: iStockphoto

Technology that allows your car to do your parallel parking for you has been around for a few years - in fact, we wrote a post about it (When Did Passive Driving Become So Popular?) back in 2011. And this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas shows that the driver assistance trend continues.

This year's CES saw car companies unveil tons advanced technology that takes driver assistance to the next level. Audi showed off a new self-parking technology that it says "can allow a car to seek out a parking space in a garage, find it and park all without a driver in the seat."

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Driving After Dark

Driving at Night
Photo: iStockphoto

I won't lie to you - I sometimes get a little panicky in the car when it starts to get dark. I have to concentrate and remind myself that I'm not going blind…it's just the sun going down.

Here in Canada, with our dark, dark winters, driving confidently in the dark is an important skill to master. Here are a few safety reminders to help us all stay alert and safe when driving at night…or on our early morning commute.

Keep your headlights free of grime. When your headlights are covered by gritty slush, your visibility is greatly reduced. Not only are you not able to see as far, but oncoming traffic may not see you.

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Smartphone Driving Apps Help Keep Us on the Road

Smartphone Driving Apps
Photo: iStockphoto

PumpTalk is back from our holiday hiatus - Happy New Year to all of you! I hope that you had a safe and satisfying holiday season, and perhaps received a nice gift or two. I was very lucky and received a new iPhone! So part of my holidays were spent trying out all kinds of apps. And in between trying to get a high score on Angry Birds Star Wars and Words with Friends, I have managed to find a couple driving-related apps that might be of interest.

First up is WazeWaze is a community based traffic and navigation app. It uses GPS to map a route, but on Waze, that route will include additional info like accidents, traffic jams, speed traps, construction delays and other road info that has been reported by other Waze users in your community.

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