Technology has hit the world of license plates

Teresa Aquila’s January article in the Happy Herald Newspaper

For years many states have allowed inmates to produce license plates while learning a trade. That may soon come to an end as we know it. Digital license plates were introduced and rolled out in California in 2018. Since then, the illuminated plates have gained miles and popularity.

A plating company called Reviver has been working on the idea of digital license plates since 2009, but like any new idea, it takes time to get customers and states to approve the change. Currently, there are only two states that have authorized the digital plates, with Michigan to join the craze by the second quarter of 2021.

The plate number and messages belong to the state, you own the plate. There is an added cost. The cost for the digital plate, a one-time fee, or a monthly charge, plus the cost of registration. They will soon be integrated into automobiles. Happy Motoring.

Canoo, A Company With Vision

Teresa Aquila’s monthly column in the Happy Herald Newspaper

Canoo, A Company With Vision

Electric vehicles just became more versatile for businesses. Looking for a multi-purpose electric vehicle? Canoo can manufacture one for you starting at thirty-three thousand dollars and built to your needs. Canoo’s vehicles but you, the owner in charge powered by innovation.

The vehicles are built on a steel frame construction, transverse composite leaf springs, a double-wishbone suspension system, variable-ratio steer-by-wire, and brake-by-wire. The total cargo volume is 230 cubic feet. Batteries come in three variations, a 200 horsepower electric motor and are front-wheel drive.

If you are looking for an electric vehicle for your business, or just curious about Canoo, check out for more information. You will be amazed. Happy Motoring.

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Do I Really Need Auto Repair Insurance?

  Owning a car offers us freedom and the ability to be very mobile. Along with owning that vehicle, comes a responsibility for repairs and maintenance. In order to get those wheels turning on the road, one must purchase automotive insurance. What about auto repair insurance?              

One of the big advantages of having the right auto repair insurance policy is that it covers the total cost of some major repairs. When customers are paying out of their pocket, some mechanic shops have no problem charging endless amounts of money for their services. With the right auto repair insurance, the insurance company not only picks up the tab, but it also regulates the costs and lets a customer or policyholders know if the mechanic’s charge is excessive.

Do You Need Bumper to Bumper?
Bumper to bumper car insurance means that most of the components needed to operate your vehicle safely are included in the policy. This includes, but is not limited to, the engine, drive train, transmission, exhaust, brakes, and electrical components. However, things like body repair, broken lights, windows, and interior fixes are not covered. Bumper to bumper coverage will keep you from having to spend large amounts of money for repairs.

When you purchase a bumper to bumper auto repair insurance policy, always pay attention to the fine print. This usually means hidden fees, penalties, and limited coverage. One example is restrictions on what is paid to the service center. If they charge $75 per hour for labor, some policies only pay out $55 per hour. Check to make sure that you are aware of these limits and restrictions before they happen.

        Auto repair insurance policies are “À la carte,” in that a driver can purchase an insurance policy for specific parts or systems, from the engine and transmission to different auto parts systems, such as an electrical system or brake system. A customized auto repair insurance policy can cover just what the driver is worried about, providing precise, effective coverage for specific mechanical breakdown situations.

Despite the benefits of car repair insurance, a huge number of drivers prefer to take their chances without it. Why? Here are a few reasons why car repair insurance is not a universally applauded product:

Partial coverage

Car repair insurance is customizable. That is, there are different options for insuring the transmission, the engine, the fuel system and all other kinds of parts. The problem is that these add up. Drivers generally don’t know which part of their car is going to break first, nor can they really predict which parts of the car will be most troublesome over its lifetime. That’s one problem with signing up for car repair insurance that only covers certain parts systems. The insurance burden.

Drivers already pay a good bit of insurance, just to get a car on the street. Since today’s basic liability insurance doesn’t cover at-fault damages, many drivers go with comprehensive insurance, which incurs additional costs. Many drivers are happy just to get all of the required insurance for dealing with the costs of a wreck or collision. Car repair insurance puts even more of an insurance burden on the driver’s wallet.

Claims handling.
Those who routinely deal with any kind of insurance know the game that insurers often play: an insurer will enthusiastically endorse an insurance product, and sign up new customers. Where it gets tricky is when the insurer is asked to actually pay a claim. Insurance buyers know that fine print can “void” much of the insurer’s obligation. In the minds of many drivers, there’s no point in paying for theoretical breakdown situations, only to find that in the rare chance that they do occur, some clause in the policy lets the insurer off the hook.

The Waiting Game.
When insurers do payout, it may take months for the payment to reach the customer. That’s the time that a driver may not have to balance his or her checkbook against the financial liability of the vehicle breakdown. Again, a large number of drivers choose instead to keep money on hand for use in the event of a parts malfunction or breakdown of the car or truck they depend on for daily transportation. Happy Motoring.

Nissan Helps Make The Putt Every Time

When you hear the name Nissan, you quickly think of automobiles. But did
you know that Nissan is also known for its technology? Nissan’s
ProPILOT 2.0, the driver assistance technology, is about to debut in
September, allowing golfers to put their putting nerves aside.

The ProPILOT 2.0 was designed to work with the vehicle’s navigation system. The ProPILOT golf ball can now assist golfers to sink a putt every time, helping even novice golfers to perform like the pros.

ProPILOT golf ball is guided by an overhead camera, detecting the position of the ball and cup. The ball’s monitoring system calculates the best route based on the direction of the ball, and adjusts its direction to help make a perfect putt. Golf will never be the same. Happy Motoring

Radio Show Archives

Teresa’s Garage Radio show airs weekly at   and covers topics on everything Automotive and features special guests. Listeners are encouraged to call in, come in or tune in the Reno, Nevada area at 101.3 FM Tuesdays at 2:00-3:00 PM and 1180 AM. Or you can listen to previous shows right here on Teresa’s Garage website.

If you do not live in the Reno/Sparks, Nevada area you can connect on your Iphone or Computer by clicking this link, for live streaming on America Matters Media Radio Show.

If you want to listen to previously recorded shows, click here Teresa’s Garage Radio Shows . Teresa’s Garage is constantly looking for special guests, people who love cars, own classics, belong to a car club and want to promote your events or just want to talk about your classic, then call toll free 844-790-8255 or locally 775-827-8900. We love hearing from our listeners.

Happy Motoring





Are Repair Shops Missing Out on Catering to Women

Are Repair shops missing out on Catering to Women

Purchasing an automobile is the second largest purchase a person makes next to owning a home. In today’s world of automotive technology, car features change it seems by the day. Researching a car that will suit your needs and personal desires is a must before heading out into the world of car salespeople.

I am not one who enjoys visiting car dealerships. Before you even exit out of your car, the sales staff is preying on you like a buzzard looking for their daily meal hoping to land a sale and a nice commission.

Women are single purchasers of automobiles these days. Statistics show that In the U.S., there are half a million women actively looking to buy a new car at any given time. They have a serious influence on all automotive purchases (85 percent), from the showroom to the service lane. Yet, 74 percent of women feel misunderstood by the automotive industry. Between buying new cars and getting them serviced, women spend about $200 million in the US. That’s a staggering statistic for sure!

With the shift in automobile ownership, women are 65 percent of licensed drivers in the United States. The question is, are businesses like Dealerships, Auto body and auto repair shops considering catering to women? Corporations own a fair share of most repair shops, mainly made up of the male gender, so understanding their customer base is important to their bottom line. To stay competitive, these shops need to reconsider their approach to all customers, not just women. Although more women are branching out into this mostly dominated male industry and opening up shop with quite a following.

Women may not know or understand what the shop is explaining to them when it comes to their car’s repairs, so don‘t try using fancy terminology as a scare tactic. What women want is to be listened to and valued, not talked down to and feel helpless. Shops are in business to make a profit, up-selling is one place to do that. By up-selling, it helps to pad the bottom line. A lot of times, these up-sell are unnecessary for the car owner, and women fall prey to this. The shops use scare tactics to lure them into accepting their evaluation and signing the work order to complete the repair.
The old stereotype of women being fearful and at a disadvantage going into a car dealership seems less true than ever. The world where millennial’s grew up differed greatly from that of older generations,” said Jessica Caldwell, director of industry analytics at Edmund’s. “For many, both parents worked, and they made equally financial decisions, which is reflected in their different attitudes toward gender roles in car shopping.

Are women in fact as good as men at car shopping? Neither Edmund’s nor anyone else appears to have gathered broad empirical data. But in a small survey of 2,500 people by the leasing site, women reported having negotiated lower monthly lease payments on mainstream brands.

I have seen my fair share of shops where their atmosphere is far from female friendly. The days of making the waiting room look like someone’s man cave is no longer acceptable. Women expect the shops to be more appealing, not intimidating and dirty.

The bathroom is one place to start. Having a hook on the stall door is a plus since most women carry a handbag, and the thought of placing it has its own issues. Brownie points for offering snacks, TV, WiFi, while they wait; or even better, a shuttle service so they don’t have to wait there at all. Women will most likely have kids in tow when the need to visit a repair shop, so having an area for kids to occupy their time with toys is an added plus.

With the 21st century come changes, and as a potential car buyer, or a current owner, make sure you are in charge of your cars repairs. The woman of today knows her mind. She is unstoppable once she gets going. She embodies the quintessential spirit of the 21st century. Carter to your customers and watch the bottom line grow.
Happy Motoring .

Idle Time, Does It Harm My Diesel Engine?

Idle Time

Does idling your diesel powered vehicle have long term effects on the engine? One would think not, since diesels have been around for years, and idling on big rigs has always been the norm for over-the-road truckers.

The diesel engines of years past have changed drastically to keep up with emission standards and computer controlled engines. Since 2007, the diesel engine has seen a change in the way the engines exhaust is measured and purified.

Components were added to help reduce the carbon the engine emits helping to keep our air cleaner. But is it all really working and at what cost?

Changes In 2007

The 2007 standards include a 50% reduction in the various nitrogen oxides (NOx) produced during combustion and a 90% reduction in particulate matter emissions compared to 2004 standards. The regulation requires on-vehicle monitoring of the performance of the engine’s emissions system.

The industry standard is called Engine Manufacturer Diagnostics (EMD) and will detect issues within the emissions control system and inform the driver with indicator lights on the dashboard.

Since engine changes alone cannot meet the new requirements, new “clean diesel” technologies include improved electronic control systems, ultra-low sulfur diesel (ULSD), exhaust after treatment such as catalytic converters and diesel particulate filters (DPF), enhanced exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), cooling system changes (due to higher heat loading), and fuel/air ratio change


A diesel particulate filter, or DPF, is an exhaust after treatment device that traps particulate matter such as soot and ash. A DPF typically uses a substrate made of a ceramic material that is formed into a honeycomb structure. 

In order to reduce emissions from diesel vehicles, diesel particulate filters capture and store exhaust soot, which must be periodically burned off to regenerate the filter. The regeneration process burns off excess soot deposited in the filter, which prevents harmful exhaust emission and the black smoke you commonly see emitted from diesel vehicles when accelerating.

The life of the DPF is substantially reduced if non-ULSD is used. Typically, DPFs need to be cleaned of noncombustible materials (“ash” that comes from the unburned detergents from engine oil) every 150,000 to 200,000 miles using an exchange program or “clean it on the truck” process estimated to cost between $150 and $400.

Equating Hours To Miles

So what does this have to do with idling? Hours of idling adds miles to your engine. First you need to determine how many hours have accumulated on your engine. Multiply the amount of hours on your engine by 60.

Use the number you come up with to estimate how many miles is on your engine. For example, 1,235 hours on an engine equates to approximately 74,100 miles. Just knowing how many more miles you have racked up on the engine isn’t the only thing to worry about. If you change your oil every 6,000 miles, divide 74,100 by 6,000, leaving you with 12.35 missed oil changes, fuel filters, which will eventually lead to early engine failure.

Over the course of a year, a long-haul truck will idle about 1,800 hours, using nearly 1,500 gallons of diesel. For one heavy truck, the cost of idle fuel waste averages about $4,000. The cost of poor fuel efficiency for a large fleet of vehicles is high. This equates to 1.2 gallons of fuel per hour.

If you plan on purchasing a diesel powered vehicle, understand the maintenance these engines require today, otherwise you might be racking up expensive repair bills. Happy Motoring

Is Your Car A Solar Panel?

With the push for automobiles to go green, harnessing the
electrical power while you drive is getting closer than you think. Solar power
is there for the taking, but getting it to power your car has taken some time
for engineers to develop.

Hyundai has made a break through with its new Sonata Hybrid. This Hybrid has solar panels, which can power a few extra miles of driving a day. The panels are locked on the top side of the vehicle, from the hood, rooftop and trunk lid to help give you those extra miles and keep your batteries charged while you drive. The company claims its shiny photovoltaic top could give the car an additional 808 miles of travel each year.

So they say. But not everyone has the option to park their cars in the sun, or even want to for that matter. Sun damages the vehicles paint and interior when left day after day in the sun in hopes of gaining 808 miles for the year. Not to mention, the panels will add weight to the vehicle which results in lost mileage.

With all the new technology evolving everyday, battery life will increase, but no where near what a full tank of gas or diesel can offer. Electric vehicles take fossil fuels to charge the battery packs. And when the batteries fail, they must be disposed of. Electric powered cars, trucks, and buses are not going away, but going the distance is the name of the game. Let’s see who wins.

Happy Motoring.