Here Are Bonnet Basics You Should Know

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KAPOW! You’ve just been sucker-punched by a blinking oil light. And until you have private access to your own superhero you must learn what’s going on under your bonnet, quick smart.

While most of us find out about Superman than perform our cars, there are a few things you need to know to help keep yourself on the highway. Even if the initial real life superhero (aka Mum or Dad) taught that you simply thing or three about cars, their notes about all the different liquids needed underneath the bonnet may have slipped to the back of the mind – what with remembering to brake before you hit the curb at the forefront of your mind.

It’s very easy to ignore your car’s basic needs when, well, for just one, you don’t know how to locate the portion of the engine it goes in, and 2, you’re not entirely sure what it does. So here’s a refresher on several of the basic fluids your car needs. And with a little comic book inspired memory jog, you can be your own personal superhero by getting to know your under-the-bonnet basics.

OI!

Your OIL. Oil is to your engine like blood is to your body – without it things stop working. It lubricates the moving aspects of your engine (the cylinders and pistons) so they don’t cause friction. Friction is an engine’s nemesis; it causes so much heat that this metal bits of the engine begin to weld and melt together and eventually the engine itself seizes. So, to make certain your engine remains functional, it needs oil.

You should check your car’s oil once a month by checking its level around the dipstick, which looks such as this:

BRA!

Where will you be without BRAKE FLUID? Probably in a lot of trouble. You are using brake fluid every time you stop or slow your vehicle. Brake fluid assists in the transfer of force once you press the brake pedal. Without brake fluid, your automobile will not stop as easily, creating a dangerous situation on your own and others. It’s a good idea to examine your brake fluid regularly to be certain there aren’t any leaks in your brake lines (the lines that transfer the liquid towards the brakes). When you notice a rapid lowering of brake fluid you may have a problem with your brake lines. You can get the brake fluid reservoir on the driver’s side in the car and you will check the level by looking at the outside of the container.

POW!

That’s right, POWER STEERING FLUID. You do have a friendly side-kick doing the heavy lifting, although you may think you’re in complete charge of your car. The strength steering system in your car helps you turn your steering wheel. Like your brakes, power steering is a hydraulic system – it uses liquid to go its component parts. So, it’s a good idea to keep close track of your power steering fluid levels. You should be able to easily locate your power steering fluid reservoir under your bonnet, just look at your car’s manual. Like a lot of the fluid reservoirs under your bonnet you will be able to check the level by exploring the plastic container.

COO!

Check your COOLANT. Much like the name suggests, coolant is actually a fluid which makes hot things cool. Just like a swim inside the ocean cools you on a hot summer’s day, coolant is used by your car’s radiator to cool your engine down and keep it from overheating. Once before summer and then before winter your coolant needs to be checked at least two times a year -. Coolant is often kept in a plastic container next to the radiator so you must be able to check your coolant levels by simply looking at the container to see if the liquid inside comes up to the correct level.

WAZA!

Check your WASHER FLUID. Don’t underestimate the basic need for washer fluid. Nothing could be more irritating, and indeed dangerous, compared to a dirty windshield when you’re driving to the sun. There are several different types of washer fluid on the market, and while some need to be blended with water, others can be used completely from the bottle. Make sure you know which one you are getting before you use it. Washer fluid should be checked regularly (monthly), depending on how often you use it. To check its levels simply open your bonnet and look for a clear plastic container that is certainly labelled either with words or with a windscreen symbol.

The Final Word

Just keep in mind that all cars are different, so consult your car’s manual for further specific instruction. Ensure your car is turned off and cooled down before you check your under-the-bonnet basics also.

It’s important to keep your car well maintained, and knowing your under bonnet basics is a superb start; ensure you have your car or truck serviced regularly to ensure it’s running at its optimum. And, to the peace of mind of your very own on-road super hero, compare Roadside Assistance policies today. Happy driving!

Killer New Sports Cars

If you’re a lover of high-speed thrills, hairpin turns, and incredible torque then you are undoubtedly a lover of classic muscle and sports cars. There’s nothing quite like the sensuous curves of a Jaguar, or the pure, unadulterated power of a Mustang to get a car lover’s blood pumping. For individuals who like it fast, furious, and ferocious, we bring you this list of lust-worthy sports cars. Even if you aren’t fortunate enough to jump behind the wheel of one of these beautiful driving machines, just reading about them is likely to get you all hot and bothered.

Dodge Viper

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Inside the ad campaign for it’s 2015 model, Dodge promises that just one look at the new and improved Viper SRT will have your eyesight dilated plus your pulse racing. For once, it seems there is actually some truth in advertising. This supercar embodies artisanal automobile manufacturing at its finest. The Viper’s long nose, curvaceous body, and intimidating profile turn it into a stunner to behold. But it’s the 645 horsepower, 8.4-liter V10 engine, capable of rocketing to 60 miles per hour within three seconds that is certain to get your blood pumping. This is a honest to goodness, visceral, white knuckle driving experience. This year’s limited edition Ceramic Blue model offers an even more exclusive allure, with only 40 cars slated for production in 2015. A real exotic, but made below on American soil, the Dodge Viper is an unconventional classic.

Nissan GT-R

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Nissan has developed a reputation for building high quality performance machines that push the boundaries of today’s auto market, so we personally feel that reputation is well earned. They’ve set the industry standard for electric vehicles with all the Leaf, crossover SUVs together with the Pathfinder and Expedition, and possess now created a sports car to rival the world’s best, the Nissan GT-R. After taking one for a spin recently at Nissan West Covina, we were blown away with the performance and power of the car. Its dual-clutch automated manual transmission makes for a really thrilling driving experience, along with the V6 turbocharged engine is fast enough to make your face spin. The people at Downtown Nissan accept us- the Nissan GT-R provides passionate drivers with an unparalleled ride.

Lamborghini Aventador

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Certainly the most aggressively flamboyant roadster on our list, the Lamborghini Aventador is one massive driving machine that really lives up to its wild reputation. Wide, robust, and muscle bound, it really is significantly greater than many comparable sports cars, yet seems to remain remarkably agile because of its size. Flashy though it may be, drivers consistently say that this all-wheel-drive, 700 horsepower beast is actually a true jaw dropper on the highway. It pushes over 150 miles per hour effortlessly, gripping corners with grace and fluidity. The Aventador really encourages drivers to engage from it, pushing these people to their very edge to get a fulfilling and thrilling ride. On the racetrack and roadways alike, the Lamborghini Aventador can be a mean, mad driving machine without equal.

Why These Thanksgiving Deals Are The Best Ones in the Market

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Annually at Thanksgiving, we celebrate with our family and friends to give thank you for the things that are perfect in our lives. This year, new car buyers can also thank automakers for several terrific deals on 2013 and 2014 models that may potentially save consumers as much as 22 percent on certain models.

After the turkey is gone, new car shoppers can skip the long lines that await bargain hunters on Black Friday along with the following weekend and benefit from great new car deals in the dealership lots. It’s the conclusion of the month and almost the end of the season, and dealers are becoming especially motivated to go cars to attain their sales goals.

TrueCar is working to help new-car shoppers find a great buy on their perfect vehicle, as your resource for researching new car pricing. To aid with that search, each edition of Steals on Wheels shares a few of the very best car prices we could find to help you the best deal on your own next new car. This week, we’re centering on five great discounts readily available for Thanksgiving, through Black Friday weekend, and into early December with potential savings ranging from 16.5% to 22.4%. Market average pricing on these new cars demonstrates a range of discounts off Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Pricing (MSRP) equaling up to $8,951 off these five great new car deals.

These Thanksgiving deals are available nationwide, reflect the potential discount from the Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price (MSRP), and include potential savings from such special offers as manufacturer’s rebates and cash incentives, which will help place them one of the greatest opportunities for savings for new car shoppers throughout the next two weeks.

Steps in Determining Your Gas Prices

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Gas prices increase every summer, and oil companies report record profits equally as Americans are preparing for the summertime travel season. The two events – rising fuel prices and increasing travel by Americans – may seem more than coincidental. Facts are, gas prices are based on a combination of monetary and fiscal details: the price of crudeoil and taxes, refining costs, and distribution costs.

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Source – Energy Information Administration (March 2011)

The Energy Information Administration describes these pricing components the following:

Taxes: the monthly national average of federal and state taxes applied to gasoline.

Distribution & Marketing Costs: the difference between your average list price of gasoline and the amount of the other 3 components. They are the costs charged by a local retail gasoline station and can include profits.

Refining Costs: the main difference between the monthly average of the price of gasoline and the average price of crude oil purchased by refiners. This too includes profits.

Crude Oil: the monthly average price of crude oil purchased by refiners. Oil price is the one biggest element in the price of gasoline.

United States refineries produce approximately 90 percent in the gasoline used in the United States, with about 45 percent of U.S.-produced gasoline coming from refineries along the U.S. Gulf Coast. Less than forty percent of the oil used by Usa refineries is produced in america.

Why gas prices rise

Gas prices rise (or fall) primarily due to changes in the global oil market. Prices are also affected by variations in tax rates among states, in addition to refinery issues, and retail gasoline dealer issues likerent and site, and local competition.

Global industry for crude oil

The buying price of crude oil will be the main reason for the general surge in retail gasoline prices since the start of 2009. Generally, a $10 increase in oil prices results in a 25-cent increase in retail gasoline prices. Crude oil prices depend on several factors including worldwide supply and demand, stability in the distribution network, the value of the U.S. dollar, and price speculation.

Supply of oil: The Organization of your Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), a cartel of 12 oil-rich countries, which produces about 43 percent from the world’s oil, exerts significant influence on prices by setting production limits on its members.

If the overall supply of crude oil decreases, the world market tightens and cost usually rises. Restricting the supply pushes up pump prices by as much as 80 cents a gallon. OPEC countries have essentially each of the world’s spare oil production capacity and possess about two-thirds of the world’s estimated crude oil reserves.

Worldwide demand for oil: The United States consumes more oil and refined products (such gasoline, diesel and as heating oil, and jet fuel) than any other nation in the world.

The demand for crude oil in India, China and other developing countries, however, has risen with their populations, increased trade, growing internal markets, and strong commodity prices. Developing nations are expected to account for nearly half of the international demand by 2015, up from 36 percent in 1996. Increasing demand leads to higher prices.

Interruption of the distribution network: Interruptions in the flow of oil through the distribution network can cause gasoline prices to rise, including natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina, the Gulf Coast-BP oil spill, or political instability in countries like Iraq,Yemen and Libya, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, or Nigeria.

Importance of the Usa dollar: Oil is traded on the world market in U.S. dollars. When the need for the dollar drops in comparison to other major currencies, producers earn less and compensate by raising the price per barrel of oil.

Commodities market speculation: Speculation in the commodities markets where crude oil is traded also drives up the cost. Financial speculators make money around the fluctuations in prices of commodities like oil by placing bets that the price will go down or up. Some studies show that the speculative interest in crude oil markets has doubled, from 18 percent to 36 percent from 2003 to 2009.

Speculative activity results in a cost premium estimated at about a fifth of the oil price or 20 cents of every dollar spent on gasoline. The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission and the Usa Department of Justice regulate and investigate speculation and illegal market manipulation in the oil market.

Tax impact on price at the gas pump

, and native government taxes are the second largest part of retail gasoline prices.Federal and state Federal excise taxes are approximately 18 cents per gallon, and state excise taxes averaged 22 cents per gallon at the beginning of 2011. 12 states levy additional state sales and other taxes on gasoline, as of January 2011.

Oil refining requirements and costs

Refiners typically earn about 20 cents for every gallon they process. Refiners lose cash when plunging prices require them to sell gasoline for less than the oil they bought. Refining costs and profits vary due to different gasoline formulations required in different parts of the usa.

To comply with the Clean Air Act, refiners must switch to summer blend formulas for many urban markets on or around May 1 each year. Such blends are definitely more more and complex costly to make. Many contain ethanol, an alcohol mixed with gasoline to create a cleaner fuel that will account for as much as 15 percent of some gasoline blends.

The way your local service station profits from gas sales

Retail dealers earn approximately 14 cents on every gallon of gasoline sold. Dealer costs include wages and salariessalaries, benefits and equipment lease/rent, insurance, and also other overhead. An individual dealer’s cost of doing business varies depending on number and site of local competitors.

Stations next to one another may have different trafficrents and patterns, and sources of supply that affect their prices. Because stations pass along higher real estate costs, gasoline often costs more in wealthy neighborhoods. Credit card companies also earn 2.5 percent of your transaction cost as opposed to a flat fee, which impacts dealer margins.

How To Buff Up a Shine Like a New Car

If you can’t afford a bright, shining new car don’t worry, there are lots of used cars in San Bernardino for sale, along with a little bit of advice, a few items and some effort you can buff up the paintwork so that your car shines like a new one.

Go to any auto store and you’ll see shelves packed with car cleaning and polishing products, but do you need them all? Exactly what do they mean? What’s the visible difference between a compound and a polish?

Don’t worry, read on and all sorts of will be revealed?

The Best Cloths for Buffing

There are two basic types of cloth you will need for buffing, micro fiber cloths and terry cloths.

Terry Cloth – is used for drying the vehicle after the initial wash, cleaning glass, cleansing the tops of convertibles, applying tire dressing and interior cleaner / protector.

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Micro fiber Cloth – can be used for removing compound (more of that within a minute), polish and wax even if you do need to use a separate cloth every step of the way.

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What Is Compound For?

A compound can be a mildly abrasive product which is designed to eliminate the tiniest volume of paint in the surface of the car. It can be very effective to take out light swirl, oxidation and scratches marks.

You can use a compound with a random orbital polisher and foam compounding pad on a high speed setting operating in small sections across the surface of the car. Get rid of the compound having a micro fiber cloth.

Precisely What Is Polish?

Polish enhances the gloss and shine of the paintwork of your car. It adds brightness, clarity and depth to the paint finish. This should be used with a random orbital polisher and polishing pad at a medium setting. You can work in larger sections with polish than is advised with compound. Again, you should take away the polish using a different micro fiber cloth.

Some polishes also consist of a mildly abrasive compound which will clean the paint along with polish it but nearly all “”pure”” polishes do not contain any abrasive materials in any way.

What Is Car Wax?

Car wax is essential the sun screen for the paintwork of your car. It prevents oxidation, gives UV protection and seals the paint from environmental elements. It must be applied yourself using a thin foam pad although some people prefer try using a machine applicator at a slow speed. This may be applied to the full car in one go and must be left to dry before being removed using a micro fiber cloth.

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Obviously, before you start polishing or buffing up your paintwork you must give your car an effective, thorough wash. It’s a good idea to work with two different wash buckets, one containing soapy water and one with plain water. Dip your wash mitt or cloth into the soap and water, wash the auto, wring out the cloth then drop it into the clear water to rinse away the dirt before starting around the next percentage of your car.

You will certainly be surprised at the standard of the finish it is possible to achieve by simply following these basic instructions and setting up a little bit of effort and time. Your automobile may never look quite as superb since the shiny new ones for sale at Metro Nissan Redlands however it certainly won’t be far off.

When you are selling a vehicle you can literally buff a lot of money onto the value by following these guidelines too that is always nice to know.

Checking Your Cooling System Leaks

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When you find a leak in your engine’s cooling system, you must decide whether or not to handle it yourself or take it to some professional. The subsequent sections cover the different kinds of leaks and provide a few pointers to help you decide:

Radiator leaks: If the radiator is leaking badly, go to a reliable radiator shop. Do so when they say it’s cheaper to switch it than to repair it.

At the radiator shop, ask the radiator specialists the things they intend to do and request a written estimate before they are doing the work. If the estimate seems high, call another radiator shop, tell them what needs to be done, and ask for an estimate.

Leaks in the engine-block core plugs: Around the sides of some engine blocks are little circular depressions called core plugs or freeze plugs. If you see leaks or rusty streaks leading away from the core plugs on your engine block or signs that leaks from their website have dried, and you’ve been losing liquid lately, you may need to get the core plugs replaced. Your best option is to seek professional help about this one.

Check the core plugs on the sides of the engine block.

Check the core plugs on the sides of the engine block.

Internal leaks: Sometimes a leak right beneath the cylinder head can be the result of an ill-fitting head gasket or the reality that the bolts that contain the cylinder directly the engine block are too loose or too tight. You might damage the gasket in the event you don’t possess a torque wrench if you try to tighten these bolts yourself. The best thing to do is to get professional guidance here. If a mechanic has only to tighten the bolts, the cost should be minimal, whereas replacing your head gasket is far more expensive.

The head gasket lies between the cylinder head and also the engine block.

The head gasket lies involving the cylinder head and the engine block.

With today’s aluminum cylinder heads, it’s quite possible that your cylinder head may have small cracks that are allowing coolant to leak internally. Should this be the case, usually you’ll notice thick, white smoke from your tailpipe or engine oil that looks such as a mocha milkshake when you inspect the oil dipstick. Also, vehicles with automatic transmissions have a transmission cooler within the radiator that could leak. If it leaks, coolant mixes with all the transmission fluid, making the transmission fluid on the dipstick look like a strawberry milkshake. Both problems require specialist help.

Leaky water pump: Often, a water pump that’s about to break down sends out noisy warning signals then starts to leak before it fails completely. On some overhead cam engines, the water pump is behind the timing cover and it is driven with the timing belt, making inspection difficult. Leave those to a professional. You can check your pump by looking around it for leaks or signs of rust or corrosion across the seals in the event the water pump on your vehicle is visible.

The pump probably should be replaced if the pump is leaking in the front where it rotates with all the belt. In case the leak is around the gasket that lies between the water pump and the engine, you may be able to stop it by tightening the bolts that hold the water pump set up. If tightening the bolts doesn’t do the job, then you probably need a new pump.

Locating leaks by pressure-testing the cooling system: If you can’t locate the source of a leak plus your vehicle is regularly losing liquid from the cooling system, drive to your service station and get the attendants to pressure-try out your cooling system. The exam involves almost no time or labor, so a friendly technician may do the test free of charge. While you’re at it, have the technician pressure-test the radiator pressure cap as well.

Cleaning Your Vehicle’s Coolant/Antifreeze

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How to Check a Vehicle’s Coolant/AntifreezeThe radiator in your vehicle cools your engine and needs water and coolant (antifreeze) to perform. Keep the following points under consideration as you check the level of the liquid in your cooling system and add more, if needed:

Rather than open the cap on the radiator, just check to see whether the liquid reaches the “Full” line on the side of the coolant reservoir shown here. It’s part of the coolant recovery system. Open the bottle and add a 50/50 mix of coolant and water until it does in the event the liquid doesn’t reach the “Full” line. Some coolants are premixed, so check the bottle to see whether you need to add water or maybe use it as-is.

Check the coolant stored in the plastic bottle connected to the radiator.

Check the coolant stored in the plastic bottle connected to the radiator.

Only in an emergency should you add only water to the coolant system. Most modern engines have aluminum cylinder heads, which require protective anticorrosive properties of antifreeze. A 50/50 mix of liquid or coolant is often sufficient.

Some coolant recovery systems are pressurized and get a radiator pressure cap as opposed to a normal cap. Some older vehicles have zero coolant reservoir, so to check and add coolant, you need to open the cap on the radiator.

Never add coolant to a hot engine! Wait until the engine has cooled down to protect yourself from the possibility of being burned or cracking your engine block if you need to increase the amount of liquid. If you do, hot coolant could be ejected, Don’t open the caps on either of these systems if the engine is hot;.

Coolant is usually blue, green and red or yellow. If this looks colorless, looks rusty, or has things floating around within it, flush your cooling system and add new coolant.

Oily surface, immediately go ahead and take vehicle to your mechanic to examine for internal head gasket leakage, in case the coolant includes a sludgy. The service facility has special equipment for performing this check.

While you’re messing around along with your cooling system, notice the radiator hoses, too. They’re the big hoses that go into the top and come out of the base of the radiator. If they’re cracked, bulgy and leaking or squishy, they should be replaced.

Getting the Most Out Of Your SoCal Life

It’s very easy to move to Southern California and love life. The perpetual great weather is certainly awesome as well as the great food options are also omnipresent and plentiful, so what’s there to find out? Just exist and you will win! But there are some tips that are not self evident that will help you take full advantage of your new life in the area of the country that’s most perfect. How do you ensure that what they’re jealous of is not just a plastic representation of your miserable life, although no matter what, you can expect to post on the Facebook and folks will be jealous? There’s the way to genuinely be happy and love your life in Southern California.

Drive in Style

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Want it or not, Southern California is a fairly materialistic area of the world and if you drive a boring or lame car, you will be spotted by all as boring and lame and that will not help anyone. Actually, that will hurt you, hurt you to the core. So you have to make sure you get a cool car, and also since you probably can’t afford that Lambo just yet, you might want to consider getting yourself right into a Fiat, which you can do for the reasonable price over at santa monica fiat. These cars don’t cost a lot but they are zippy and they are cool, and no one can scoff at you for driving something like that, so might as well function as the first on your own block by having an awesome Fiat. Enjoy one at OC Fiat.

Hit the Beach

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Unless you live right on the water like in Santa Monica or Venice Beach, it takes a little to get to the exact ocean. In the event you let it be – don’t let it be, and it can be months between visits. Even though just for an hour or so, try to hit the oceanside retreats at least once a month, or twice for optimal awesomeness. You won’t even need to have your phone on,you can put it in airplane mode then just stare at the ocean for an hour. It’s recharging and essential for those of us who reside in this land. It would be unfortunate not to make the most.

Taco Trucks

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LA and every one of Southern California is lucky not only to have countless taco trucks, but so many great ones that have been staffed by actual Mexicans who know a thing or two about some tacos. If you put in your time and energy, and request around, you can expect to soon find the best taco trucks around, and which meats are particularly good at one truck in contrast to another, and where the best salsas and hot sauces are. You can even expand to the cheaper Mexican places that aren’t necessarily taco trucks, such as the 7 Seas place on Sunset. With just the slightest bit of work, you will soon be the king or queen of tacos in all of LA!

Why Folks from Washington D.C Can Afford the Average Car Price

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If you feel cars are obtaining too expensive, you could be right. A new report shows that the average price of a new vehicle has run out of reach for folks medium-income households in all but one of the 25 largest metro areas from the U.S.

In accordance with Kelley Blue Book, the report by Interest.com shows that Washington, D.C. is the only American metropolitan area in which a family earning the city’s median income can afford the typical price of a new vehicle, that was $32,086 in 2013. That price equates to a monthly payment of $633, assuming the buyers put 20 percent down, financed for 48 months and principal, interest and insurance did not exceed ten percent of the household’s gross income.

Average-earning residents of Washington, D.C., can afford to pay for $32,531, or $641 per month, for a vehicle. The remainder of the nation can afford significantly less. In other words, people are spending far too much money on their cars.

Too many families are spending way too much on new trucks and cars, said Mike Sante, managing editor of Interest.com. Just because you can manage the monthly payment doesn’t mean you must let a $30,000 or $40,000 ride gobble up such a huge share of the paycheck.

After Washington D.C., residents of the San Francisco and Boston metro areas were found to be able to pay more for the new car, based on median income, however it still wasn’t enough to the average vehicle. Here’s just how much Interest.com says the typical-earning car buyer can afford to invest on a new car in seven major metro areas:

– The Big Apple: $21,907 affordable purchase price/$441 maximum monthly payment

– Los Angeles: $20,637 affordable purchase price/$416 maximum payment per month

– Chicago: $21,409 affordable purchase price/$434 maximum monthly payment

– San Francisco: $28,009 affordable purchase price/$563 maximum monthly payment

– Boston: $26,669 affordable purchase price/$520 maximum monthly instalment

– Houston: $20,271 affordable purchase price/$396 maximum monthly payment

– Atlanta: $20,000 affordable purchase price/$393 maximum monthly instalment

The Interest.com numbers are well underneath the average purchase price of a new vehicle, as you can see. This implies that car shoppers are grossly overestimating or simply just aren’t informed about what amount of cash they can really spend on their transportation.

Experts say that, on the whole, you shouldn’t spend more than 20 percent of your take-home pay on your car. To find out how much car you can actually afford, calculate that number and use an auto affordability calculator, such as this one from Interest.com. This will give you a good idea of how much a car will almost certainly cost monthly based on rates of interest, trade-ins, taxes and more. You may then compare the price to your monthly budget.

Where To Look If You Want To Buy a Used Car

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David Perry’s 1998 Honda Civic CX had given all it could.

He had racked up 172,000 miles since buying the car from a friend in 2002.

It had, I think, like 90,000 miles onto it when I bought it, and then I took it to 262,000, said Perry, who lives in Nashville and relies on his wheels to get to and from work at The Village Chapel, where he is audio-visual coordinator. Yeah, I pretty much squeezed the life out of it.

The little Civic was in need of major work and just wasn’t worth fixing. So Perry set out to discover a similar replacement: somethingsmall and reliable, fuel efficient and with a manual transmission, which he prefers.

It wasn’t easy.

If you wish to find an old used car that’s been pretty well wrung out, then you’ll do not have problem, said Jeff Bartlett, deputy editor, Autos at Consumer Reports. But it’s a little harder to find that three- or four-year-old, great-condition car.

Because of the recession that hit in late 2008, people have been holding onto their rides more than usual, waiting around for better days before trading in their old wheels for brand new ones. As owners rack up tens of thousands of trouble-free miles before finally trading them in, the fact that vehicles in general are more reliable than before has only exacerbated the lack of low-mileage used cars.

TOP 5Most Researched Vehicles On AOL Autos

2013 Lamborghini Aventador

MSRP : $397,500

2013 Chevrolet Camaro

MSRP : $23,345

2013 Dodge Challenger

MSRP : $26,295

2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee

MSRP : $27,695

2013 Honda Accord

MSRP : $23,350

Making matters worse for the used-car shopper, automakers have been leasing fewer vehicles in recent years due to credit issues in the financial markets, Bartlett says. So all of the pre-owned vehicles that accustomed to flow back into dealerships once leases were up simply vanished.

When the recession hit and new car sales dropped to that 10.3 million level, it took lots of used cars out of the marketplace, says Ricky Beggs, senior vice president and editorial director of Black Book, a Gainsville, Ga.-based firm that tracks automotive residual values. And then, when they started coming back into the marketplace, we weren’t seeing two- and three- and four-year-old good quality used cars coming back into the marketplace, as much as we had been seeing some eight- to 10- and 11-year-old used cars being traded in.

It’s no wonder the average age of light vehicles on the road today reached an all-time high of 11.4 years in 2013, according to Polk, an analysis firm that tracks the car industry. (Light vehicles are described as passengers minivans, SUVs, light and cars-duty pickups.) A decade ago, the average ages of a vehicle on the road was 9.8 years.

What does this mean for car buyers?

Well, for one thing, it might be worth looking at several new vehicles when shopping for used ones. Automakers are also feeling the pinch of the economy and have been offering pretty sweet deals on brand-new models, most of which bring prices close to those of late-model used equivalents.

Based on Edmunds.com, a website that tracks car pricing, for instance, when you have a look at monthly payments — as opposed to the total price of the vehicle — and factor in the low financing rates offered on new vehicles compared to used ones, a completely new GMC Acadia and Toyota Camry Hybrid end up costing less than a one-year-old equivalent. This is assuming a 60-month loan with no downpayment and typical financing rates for new and another-year-old used vehicles, the latter in which are priced using Edmunds’ True Market Value transaction pricing. (Start to see the full selection of new versus used vehicles, here.)

The same case can be created for certified pre-owned vehicles, which usually cost more than non-certified used models mainly because they go through rigorous inspections and also a factory-backed warranty. If you’re considering a certified pre-owned Hyundai Elantra Coupe, Nissan Titan SV Crew Cab, or Toyota Prius, then you might also get the new edition, according to Edmunds.com’s calculations.

A fresh Hyundai Elantra Coupe costs about $341 each month, versus $352 for a certified pre-owned equivalent, Edmunds.com calculates. And you’ll save $12 on a monthly basis and $25 monthly, respectively, going with a brand-spanking new Nissan Titan SV Crew Cab and Toyota Prius over a certified pre-owned one.

But don’t get the wrong idea. Remember, this is contingent on the rate of finance. So, the latest-versus-used argument could be less compelling if you have bad credit.

Used cars will more often than not cost less than new ones when looking at the total price. What’s more, used car charges are finally settling back down again, after jumping in previous years for reasons discussed above. The average rate of depreciation, which is a vehicle’s biggest single cost, for used cars went up .4 percent from 2012 to 2013, according to Black Book data. Just a trend that says the depreciation is going to be a little bit greater going forward, Beggs said, though Not a major difference.

That’s partly why Edmunds.com’s selection of vehicles that cost less new versus used has been dwindling. It was very lengthy from the crazy 2009 days, says Jessica Caldwell, director of pricing and industry analysis at Edmunds.com.

If it costs more, because in some instances, the surcharge is almost inconsequential — at least when examining monthly payments, a whole new vehicle still might be worth considering over a used one even. A new Honda CR-V LX with all-wheel drive will only run you an additional $540 over the course of a 60-month loan term compared to a used model, according to Edmunds.com data. Meanwhile, a new Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sport has a $1,080 premium across a one-year-old used model.

In the event the price was that close, I’d imagine most people would opt for the new vehicle, Caldwell says.

But those holding out for any low-mileage, used-car bargain shouldn’t lose hope. As Perry’s experience proves, you will still find good deals that can be found. Just be prepared to carry out the legwork.

When looking to replace his rundown Honda Civic hatchback, Perry considered both new and used models. He test drove a 2014 Nissan Versa, which is amongst the lowest-priced new vehicles on the market. But he passed on it because it felt too stripped down and feature-less compared to the used Chevrolet Cruze and Hyundai Accent he looked at.

I investigated a couple of Hondas, Perry said. A couple of them were gone by the time I was able to arrive there. Those are hard to keep around from the used lot. The same happened with a Ford Fiesta he wanted to scope out.

Ultimately, Perry managed to find a good deal on a used car. After searching for days across a handful of dealerships, he managed to score a 2012 Hyundai Accent by using a manual six-speed transmission with only 4,500 miles on the odometer. Quite a haul, considering the five-year/60,000-mile factory warranty is still in effect.

It’s very quiet, it’s very responsive and I’m really enjoying it so far, Perry said.