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Four Things That Will Leave You Stuck in the Driveway

Four Things That Will Leave You Stuck in the Driveway

Car won’t start? The reason might be an easy fix. You jump in the shower, scarf down an energy bar, grab your stuff and slip into your car, psyched for a busy day at work when – Oh, no! You turn the key and nothing happens. Looks like you’ve got an unexpected day off work. Why? E3 Spark Plugs has a few ideas. Here are the top 5 reasons you’re your car wont’ start: Bad battery: This one’s probably the most common culprit of them all. A quality battery typically will last about three years before it needs replacing. To make sure you get the most of yours, keep your battery posts clean by periodically scrubbing them with a wire brush. Apply a little petroleum jelly to the posts to keep them lubricated. And make sure the camps and connections remain secure. Bad fuel: Mucked up fuel can cause your engine to go into a coughing spaz, particularly if your ride has been sitting in the garage for a while. If you hear engine pings or knocks, it could be a sign that the fu...

February 9, 2015


Gaming Gets Real with GT Academy

Gaming Gets Real with GT Academy

GT Academy can take you from the virtual world onto the real-world racing tracks. Ever spent hours in front of the video game screen wishing you could physically jump into that fictional scene and make it your new reality? Actually, it’s possible – and not just within the confines of a Hollywood film, E3 Spark Plugs says. Back in 2008, the makers of Gran Turismo decided to take the best from their top-rated video game’s virtual world and give them a real-world experience like no other. Game director Kazunori Yamauchi has long talked up his notion of bridging the gap between racing simulations and real motorsport. So, his company, Polyphony Digital, teamed up with Sony and Nissan to create GT Academy – a serious racing gamer’s dream come true. GT Academy is a game within game that “takes people who are good at video games and, in a matter of months, turns them into professional drivers,” the Gran Turismo website says. It starts with a scheduled series of time tr...

February 9, 2015


Best State for Teen Drivers? Believe It or Not, New York

Best State for Teen Drivers? Believe It or Not, New York

Turns out the safest teen drivers are in New York. We’ve got tips to help keep your teen drivers safe wherever you live. The traffic accident rates for 16- to 19-year old drivers are higher than those for any other age group. And we’re not just talking fender-benders. Automobile accidents are the leading cause of death for teenagers nationwide, and the vast majority of them are preventable. Results of studies conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration pinpoint immaturity and inexperience as the primary factors contributing to deadly crashes with young drivers. Other, and often related factors can include poor hazard detection, poor risk perception, speeding, driving with a carload of friends, night time driving and texting while driving. But it appears that some states do a far better job than do others at keeping their teen drivers safe. Wallethub, a social media site dedicated to helping members make better financial decisions, recently published re...

February 9, 2015


Holy Street-Legal Batmobile!

Holy Street-Legal Batmobile!

Australia’s Zac Mihajlovic uses his street-legal Batmobile replica to help terminally ill children. Oh yes – You read that headline correctly. There’s actually a street-legal Batmobile in existence. It only took two years, about a million dollars and one seriously psyched superfan to achieve. And like the real Batmobile, it’s often zooming down the road to help those in need. E3 Spark Plugs introduces you to Zac Mihajlovic, the Australian guy with the car that’s no doubt got his buddies in full-on envy mode. His newly registered ride is a near-exact replica of the Batmobile featured in the 1989 Batman movie, which started Michael Keaton as the Caped Crusader aka Bruce Wayne, Kim Basinger as his beautiful romantic lead, and Jack Nicholson as his nemesis, the clownishly homicidal Joker. The project began in 2009, when Mihajlovic bought multiple spare parts from the actual Batmobile used in the blockbuster film, the first of a string of Batman movies, the next of which...

February 9, 2015


Famed Ron Pratte Classic Car Collection to be Auctioned Off

Famed Ron Pratte Classic Car Collection to be Auctioned Off

One of just nine known remaining GM Futurliner buses is among the amazing rides in the Ron Pratte collection to be auctioned off in January. Heads up, classic car buffs. E3 Sparks Plugs just got word of a great opportunity to drive home an amazing, possibly historic ride. One of the most famous among classic car collectors is auctioning off his entire collection. If you follow the auctions on TV and online, you’ve no doubt seen him – Ron Pratte, they guy who once dropped major cash on 52 vehicles at a single auction in Scottsdale. Pratte built his fortune, currently estimated at upwards of $350 million, as the founder and former CEO of the Phoenix, AZ-based Pratte Development Company, Inc., one of the nation’s largest wood framing and concrete foundation companies. In what is now realized as a brilliantly shrewd move, Pratte sold the privately held company to Pulte Homes and cashed out of the business shortly before the housing market crashed. With nothing but time and ...

February 9, 2015


Where to Donate Your Used Car? E3 Spark Plugs Offers a Few Ideas

Where to Donate Your Used Car? E3 Spark Plugs Offers a Few Ideas

Nonprofit homes for troubled youth use donated cars to teach young residents auto mechanic skills. Got a ride sitting in your driveway or yard that not likely to see the open road with you in behind the wheel again? Rather than let it rust and rot, why not donate it to a nonprofit organization that could use it for a positive cause? Not only will you get that feel-good vibe from doing something helpful, but you may just get a little cash for it come tax time, too. The US government allows vehicle owners to benefit from donating used rides in one of two ways, depending upon how the receiving charity will use the donation. If a charity will actually use the vehicle itself, you may be allowed to deduct its value up to a state or federally predetermined amount when filing you’re taxes each year. If the charity will sell your vehicle and use the proceeds to serve their beneficiaries or further their cause, then you’ll be allowed to deduct the amount of money for which the chari...

February 9, 2015


Parents Magazine, Edmunds.com Declare Best Family Rides of 2014

Parents Magazine, Edmunds.com Declare Best Family Rides of 2014

The 2014 Honda Odyssey is the best family minivan, say researchers with Parents Magazine and Edmunds.com. Here at E3 Spark Plugs, we’re all about family. And, of course, great rides. So, we were curious to see just which cars, SUVs and minivans made the recently released list of the best family rides as declared by Parents Magazine and Edumunds.com, an online resource for all-things-automotive. Rides were chose based on a litany of factors including safety, fuel economy, leg room and cargo space, value for the money, and style. After all, your grocery getter need not be an ugly one. Researchers also kept in mind car buyers with large broods, limited budgets and eco-friendly mindsets. “We do this to save parents time during the car-shopping process and make it easier for them to buy the right vehicle to haul their family and their stuff,” said Edmunds.com Editor in Chief Scott Oldham. And the winners are: The 2014 Mazda 3 and Ford Fiesta for budget-minded families. ...

February 9, 2015


That Whole GM Debacle Just Got Worse

That Whole GM Debacle Just Got Worse

The death toll resulting from faulty GM ignition switches may be far higher than previously thought. Since February, the automotive world has been focused on what just may prove one of the biggest automotive recalls in history. And it just got worse for beleaguered car maker General Motors. In February, GM recalled 780,000 vehicles, after reports that 22 automobile crashes resulting in six deaths may have been caused by a faulty ignition switch. Turns out defective switches were shifting unexpectedly, shutting down the vehicles’ engines and seizing the power steering, power brakes and airbag deployment mechanisms – though GM officials pointed to vehicle owners and drivers using heavy key chains and driving on rough terrain. A few weeks later, when reports surfaced that up to 13 deaths may have been caused by the issue GM expanded the recall and admitted that it had known about the issue for a solid decade. Now, a group of investigative reporters with Thomas Reuters says th...

February 9, 2015


Three Tips for Getting the Most from Donating Your Used Vehicle

Three Tips for Getting the Most from Donating Your Used Vehicle

Donating your used vehicle to a charity is a noble gesture that could benefit you as well. Considering donating your used vehicle? It’s a noble gesture. And it’s one that could benefit both you and the charity you choose – but only if you do it the right way. E3 Spark Plugs offers a few tips: Do your homework: Before signing over your vehicle, make sure you do your research. Unfortunately, there are unscrupulous folks out there who will set up and/or market bogus nonprofit organizations, keeping donations for themselves. Make sure that the charity you choose is, indeed, a genuine charitable organization recognized by the Internal Revenue Service, in good standing and with a 501c3 designation, which will allow you to receive a tax benefit for your donation. A few great resources for doing that are Forbes’ America’s 200 Largest Charities list, your local Better Business Bureau, the BBB Wise Giving Alliance, and GuideStar.org. Some of these resources include financial...

February 9, 2015


Motorcycle Safety Tips for New and BAMBI Riders

Motorcycle Safety Tips for New and BAMBI Riders

Motorcycles are enjoying a boom time. If you’re a new or returning biker, make sure you’re ready. Since the economy tanked and gas prices began to run amok a few years ago, motorcycle sales have enjoyed a boom time. After all, fuel costs and insurance typically are lower than they are for your gas-guzzling full size truck or SUV. And then there’s Sons of Anarchy – the crazy successful FX network show that some pop culture pundits say has lent the motorcycle industry a bit of a popularity boost. As a result, America’s roadways today are filled with relatively inexperienced, but nonetheless licensed motorcycle drivers. If you’re among them, welcome to the club. Motorcycle enthusiasts are a bit of a brotherhood, whether you’re a newbie or a veteran, riding a vintage Indian you pieced back together yourself, or a shiny new Rolex ride. Then, there are the BAMBIs, or “Born Again MotorBIkers.” These are riders who, for whatever reason (age, jobs, nervous and naggin...

February 9, 2015


Honda Accord, Civic Top LoJack’s List of Most Stolen Cars

Honda Accord, Civic Top LoJack’s List of Most Stolen Cars

The Honda Accord tops LoJack’s list of the nation’s most stolen cars – again. There’s nothing like that rock-in-the-bottom-of-your-stomach feeling when you’re standing in the middle of the mall parking lot and NOT finding your car. Unfortunately for those whose beloved rides are Honda Accords and Honda Civics, that feeling is an all-too-common one, according to LoJack Corp., a top provider of tracking and recovery systems. Turns out that Honda’s Accord and Civic models are enduring favorites among both law-abiding citizens and lowdown thieves alike. They’ve been upper-level regulars on most-stolen lists released by companies and agencies like LoJack and the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) multiple times over the past several years. “Year after year, the Honda Accord continues to be a top seller at car dealerships throughout the United States for a variety of reasons, including their reliability,” Patrick Clancy, LoJack’s vice president of law enforc...

February 9, 2015


Nice Truck – But Will it Tow?

Nice Truck – But Will it Tow?

Is your truck truly capable of towing your watercraft? E3 Spark Plugs offers tips. You’ve got a shiny new truck and a boat that’s ready for the water. But is your truck up for the job? E3 Spark Plugs offers a few tips on making sure your towing vehicle is truly capable. First, it’s critical that you understand just how important a proper towing vehicle is to your and your family’s safety, and that of people with whom you’re sharing the roadways while heading out to the lake, river or ocean. Just imagine the consequences of your boat slipping off the trailer, or your trailer coming unhitched from your truck while zooming down the highway. Clearly, it’s a roadway horror story waiting to happen. A primary consideration is whether your truck’s towing capacity is high enough for the watercraft you’ll be towing. Despite their often badass names and marketing blitzes, not all trucks quite live up to their hyped-up images here in the real world. Every make and model o...

February 9, 2015


Is your Jet Ski Ready for the Summer Season?

Is your Jet Ski Ready for the Summer Season?

Memorial Day weekend is one of the most popular for boaters and jet skiers. Is your watercraft ready? It’s Memorial Day weekend – the first of the summer season that many people will take their boats, jet skis and other watercraft out of dry storage and out into the lakes, rivers and ocean waves. Is yours ready? E3 Spark Plugs offers a checklist of maintenance and preparation tips. Drain & refill: When taking your jet ski out for the first time after months of wintertime dry storage, it’s best to completely drain fluids including the fuel and motor oil, and replace them with a fresh fill. Just make sure you know how that’s done for your particular model and engine. For instance, if your jet ski has a two-stroke engine, it likely requires a pre-mixture of fuel and oil placed into the same tank. A four-stroke engine watercraft, however, typically has separate fill tanks for fuel and oil. Grease & seal: Before taking your watercraft out on to the water, be sure to grea...

February 9, 2015


It’s National Safe Boating Week – E3 Spark Plugs Offers Tips

It’s National Safe Boating Week – E3 Spark Plugs Offers Tips

National Boating Safety Week is May 17-23. Is your boat ready for another season on the water? Summer’s here and if you haven’t already, we’re betting you’re anxious to hit the water in your bass boat, speed boat or even your luxury houseboat. To help make sure you make it back to the shore in one piece, the National Safe Boating Council has proclaimed May 17-23, 2014 National Safe Boating Week, just in time for the Memorial Day holiday, one of the biggest boating days of the year. And we here at E3 Spark Plugs, makers of the best boating and powersports spark plugs on the market, offer a few tips. Make sure your boat is water-worthy: For many, Memorial Day is the first day their boat is back on the water after the long winter season. Prepare yours by draining and replacing your fuel, oil and coolant; inspecting your battery to make sure the cables are clean, non-corroded and properly connected and that it’s filled with water (if your battery uses is) and fully cha...

February 9, 2015


Eight Great Tips to Prepare Your Lawnmower for Summer

Eight Great Tips to Prepare Your Lawnmower for Summer

Summer’s here. Is your lawnmower ready? Summertime is all but here. Is your lawnmower ready? E3 Spark Plugs has a few tips to help make sure you’re in the running for that Lawn of the Month plaque. Replace your fuel: Lawnmower fuel can go bad in just 30 days. So, by the time it sits all winter long, it can turn to muck, causing your mower’s engine to sputter or even prevent it from turning over. Before your first mow of the season, drain the old fuel and fill up with fresh gasoline. Oil up: Grease and oil left over from the previous season can harden, making your mower’s moving parts not want to move. Loosen things up by applying a light lubricant on spots like the throttle spring and the height adjustment lever. Clean or replace the air filter: Dirt, debris and oil can clog up your lawnmower’s air filter over the course of a mowing season, blocking oxygen from entering the engine. That’s why mower starts to sputter like it’s having a coughing spell. Clean a ...

February 9, 2015


Five Vehicle Warning Lights You Shouldn’t Ignore

Five Vehicle Warning Lights You Shouldn’t Ignore

Know what your vehicle’s warning lights mean? Study up before you have to pay up. They light up your dashboard and, every now and then, they might even ding a few times. When it happens, you give it a quick glance and make a mental note to check into it when you’ve got a few spare moments and extra dollars. But on you drive, for miles and miles and days and days and maybe even weeks and weeks without ever giving that persistently illuminating button another thought. And then, you end up in the mechanic’s shop, feigning surprise and swearing that the light JUST came on yesterday. Well, your mechanic ain’t buyin’ it. But one thing’s for sure – you’re paying for it. To help you dodge such a scenario, E3 Spark Plugs offers a few tips on warning lights you shouldn’t ignore. Low Tire Pressure: By the time most tire pressure monitoring systems send out the alert, your tires likely have been running low for a while. In fact, that warning ping typically happens onc...

February 9, 2015


Steve McQueen’s 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 Goes on the Auction Block

Steve McQueen’s 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 Goes on the Auction Block

Steve McQueen’s Ferrari 275 GTB/4 goes up for auction in August. Late actor Steve McQueen was as well known for his love of all things automotive as he was for his counterculture Hollywood films. And now, you’ve got a chance to park one of the King of Cool’s coolest classic rides in your own garage. Purchased while the actor and racing enthusiast was filming 1968′ Bullitt, playing an all guts-no glory San Francisco cop becomes chasing the underworld kingpin that killed the witness in his protection, McQueen’s 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 will cross the block during the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, August 15-16 in Monterrey, California. Actor Steve McQueen was an avid race car and motorcycle enthusiast. While he wasn’t on a movie set, McQueen often could be found on the track. He raced cars in the British Touring Car Championship, 12 Hours of Sebring and at Brands Hatch; and motorcycles in the Baja 1000, Mint 400 and Elsinore Grand Prix, among other events. He...

February 9, 2015


Ford, Chrysler Issue Recalls over Multiple Safety Issues

Ford, Chrysler Issue Recalls over Multiple Safety Issues

The 2014 Ford Escape is subject to two recalls – one involving an airbag software glitch, and another involving door handles that can stick in the open position. Hey, Ford drivers – E3 Spark Plugs says “listen up.” Ford Motor Co. is recalling upwards of 700,000 Escape SUVs and C-Max gas-electric hybrids from areas all across North America. The trouble: Two safety issues involving sticky door handles and software glitches. A portion of the recall affects more than 692,500 Escape and C-Max vehicles from the 2013 and 2014 model years. Turns out a software glitch can stop the side curtain air bags from inflating in certain types of rollover crashes, leaving drivers and passengers at risk for serious injury. Luckily, no related crashes or injuries have been reported Ford officials say. And it’s an easy fix. Registered owners can simply take their ride to the nearest Ford dealership, where a technician will reprogram the air bag control computer system free of charge. The...

February 9, 2015


E3 Spark Plugs Recommends: High Museum of Art Atlanta Exhibit Features 80 Years of Dream Cars

E3 Spark Plugs Recommends: High Museum of Art Atlanta Exhibit Features 80 Years of Dream Cars

The Norman Timbs Special, built in 1947, is among the amazing collection of concept cars that make up the High Museum of Art Atlanta’s Dream Cars exhibit opening May 21. “We dream of cars that will float and fly, or run on energy from a laser beam, or travel close to the ground without wheels. Such research may border on the fantastic, but so did the idea of a carriage going about the country without a horse.” That line was found in The Ford Book of Styling, published in 1963. And it’s the very essence of those words that drove the development of the High Museum of Art Atlanta’s new Dream Cars exhibit, featuring an unbelievable collection of the most amazing concept cars from the past eight decades. Since its debut a little over a century ago, the automobile has gone from a technological curiosity to an elite status symbol to a mass-market daily necessity. During the 1950s, the world’s attention was on the Space Race, the competition between Cold War rivals, the U...

February 9, 2015


50 Years of Ponies and Three Things We Bet You Didn’t Know About the Mustang

50 Years of Ponies and Three Things We Bet You Didn’t Know About the Mustang

Yes – that’s a Ford Mustang station wagon. And it almost happened back in 1966. The Ford Mustang recently celebrated a milestone anniversary the same way it debuted a half-century ago – with a dramatic unveiling atop the observation deck of New York’s Empire State Building. Back in 1965 a prototype Ford Mustang convertible was debuted on the deck overlooking Manhattan. No one new that this Big Apple debut would make such a big impact. Oh, but it did! Affectionately known as the Pony car, the Ford Mustang has become one of the most iconic of American cars. So, what more fitting way to debut the 2015 limited edition GT model than with an unveiling reminiscent of the original – and just in time to kick off the 2014 New York International Auto Show? Only 1,964 of the celebratory model will be made, in recognition of the car’s original display at the 1964 World’s Fair. Each will be made in one of the two colors of the Ford’s logo – white or blue; will boast specia...

February 9, 2015


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