Friday, August 5, 2011

Honda Recalls 1.5 Million Vehicles

Honda will voluntarily recall approximately 1.5 million vehicles in the U.S. to update the software that controls the automatic transmission. In some cars, a transmission part can be damaged if the car is shifted quickly between Reverse, Neutral and Drive, as might be done when trying to free a vehicle stuck in snow or mud.

If the part, a secondary shaft bearing, is damaged it can cause the engine to stall. It could also cause the car's parking gear mechanism to jam, allowing the car to roll even when the gear selector has been placed in the Park position. To fix the problem, Honda will update transmission control software in the car, reducing the maximum engine speed at which gears can be changed between Drive and Reverse.

The vehicles involved in the recall are model year 2007 through 2010 Honda CR-Vs, 2005 through 2008 Elements and 2004 through 2010 Accords with 4-cylinder engines. 

No injuries or deaths have been reported as a result of this problem, Honda said.

Honda Motor Company says it will begin notifying customers of the recall on or about August 31,2011, encouraging them to take their vehicle to an authorized Honda dealer for the automatic transmission control module software update. The update, which will be free of charge, will ease the transition between gears and reduce the possibility of damage. After August 31st, customers will also be able to find out if their vehicles are affected by going to or by calling 1-800-999-1009, and selecting option 4. The Honda recall campaign number is R89. Honda owners of Accords, CR-Vs or Elements from the affected model years with concerns or questions may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 888-327-4236 and refer to NHTSA Campaign ID No. 11V395000.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Oil falls to lowest level in 6 months

Oil dropped by an even greater amount, losing nearly 6 percent, to a six month low on Thursday - near $86 a barrel! It settled at $86.63 Thursday - the lowest level in 6 months. Investors shrugged off U.S. job gains and focused on lingering concerns about the global economy. Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for September delivery fell $1.70 to $84.93 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

This should be good news for motorists. If oil stays at the lower levels, the drop could be seen within days at gas pumps across the United States. Fred Rozell, retail pricing director at Oil Price Information Service, said the recent slide in oil could cut between 20 to 35 cents from a gallon of regular over the next month. According to auto club AAA, Wright Express and Oil Price Information Service, retail gasoline prices slipped overnight to $3.70 per gallon. 

"You could see some sizable declines at the pump," Rozell said.

Prices listed on a marquis at an Exxon station
 July 26, 2011
Oil prices pulled back from an early surge. A government report on Friday morning showed employers added 117,000 jobs in July. Unemployment fell slightly to 9.1 percent. This news helped push crude as high as $88.32 before it tapped off. Earlier in the summer, investors were still holding on to the notion that fuel prices would rise as economies in the U.S. and Europe recovered from the Great Recession. Even a pullback in U.S. gasoline consumption couldn't push oil back from around $100 per barrel. The drop in crude—oil is down from near $115 in May—should also lower costs for products such as gasoline and help free up some consumer purchasing power.

Source Yahoo News/Chris Kahn (AP)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Save Money on Car Repair Bills in Denver

With labor rates at other auto repair shops in Denver climbing as high as $120+/hour, you can get an ASE Master Certified Technician every time in Denver for only $80/hour at Mastermind Enterprises. Get quality and value with a 12 month/12,000 mile nationwide warranty! You always have an automotive professional working on your vehicle and you always get a low labor rate.

When the ‘check engine’ light comes on, it always manages to ruin one’s day because you know what is forthcoming: an expensive repair bill. Yet some owners may not have it as bad as others, based simply upon the state they live in.

CarMD analyzed roughly 80,000 repairs made on vehicles between January 1 and December 31, 2010. The average cost of repairs does not include tires, brakes, or mechanical parts (including belts and hoses), but does include repairs associated with the vehicle’s on-board diagnostic computer.

According to the report, drivers in Arizona paid the most for car repairs, with an average bill of $421.49. Conversely, those in the District of Columbia paid the least, with an average of $265.29. What’s the deal? CarMD suggests it’s partly because Arizona’s dry and extremely warm weather — while somewhat immune to the rust bug — places a considerable strain on a vehicle’s subsystems. On average, car owners in the state pay 23 percent more than the national average of $365.04, but it’s not alone.

States in located in the western corner of our country round out the top five most expensive markets; averages for New Mexico, Colorado, California, and Nevada reportedly amount $406.81, $397.83, $394.49, and $393.96, respectively.

On the other end of the spectrum? Missouri follows D.C. with a state average of $297.27, while Ohio trails in third place by a dollar, with an average of $298.49. Interestingly, CarMD claims states with lower repair costs had more gas cap-related problems, and more repairs (12 percent in D.C. alone) were made at no cost, likely because the repairs were made under manufacturer’s warranty on newer cars.

So, where do you think your state ranks? We’ve included the top 10 most expensive and the top 10 least expensive.

Most Expensive: 
1. Arizona $421.49
2. New Mexico $406.81
3. Colorado $397.83
4. California $394.49
5. Nevada $393.96
6. Washington $386.62
7. Hawaii $385.54
8. North Dakota $384.67
9. Rhode Island $384.24
10. South Dakota $374.61

Least Expensive: 
1. D.C. $265.29
2. Missouri $297.27
3. Ohio $298.49
4. Wisconsin $298.76
5. Nebraska $301.79
6. Mississippi $315.43
7. Tennessee $316.64
8. Indiana $317.33
9. New Hampshire $318.14
10. Minnesota $318.54

Source: CarMD