Let&rsquos just stop for a moment and talk petrol price per litre Can you believe that South Africa is only ranked 57th cheapest out of 163 countries*? That&rsquos not all&hellip
For more interesting facts and statistics, check out the infographic below featuring 2015 worldwide fuel prices, fuel price in South Africa 2005 &ndash 2015, and the composition of petrol price for March 2015.
*Based on petrol price per litre as of March 2015.
Monthly Fuel Spend
What do you spend on fuel each month? If you&rsquore not sure, this online calculator is for you! Now you can calculate your monthly fuel budget according to refills, litres, Rands or kilometres.
In the News The 96c a litre increase in the petrol price this month may add &ldquoapproximately 0.6% percentage points&rdquo to inflation, Reserve Bank deputy governor Francois Groepe told a Webber Wentzel function on Wednesday. For more on March petrol hikes, read &ldquoPetrol Price Hike of 96c Inflationary, Says Reserve Bank&rsquos Deputy Governor&rdquo &ndash Business Day (BDlive)
The year is rapidly passing, and with summer on the way, we can all look forward to some much-needed rest and relaxation this festive season. Whether you're hitting the beaches in Durbs, visiting family in your used Mercedes in Johannesburg, or just seeing where the day takes you, it's vitally important to ensure that your car is in good running condition. Our local roads are exceptionally busy over the festive season, and while servicing is important, there are some things you can check on yourself to ensure that you, your family and other road users are as safe as possible.
Here are some things to check out on your car before heading out this holiday
Tire Tread & Tire Pressure
Your car's tires are vitally important to ensure that you drive safely, brake properly and have the proper amount of grip on the roads and other terrains you travel on. Check your car's tire pressure often to ensure it's at the right level and remember that tires that aren't inflated properly can become prematurely damaged or result in one of the tire's tread becoming more worn than the others. If you're packing heavy for the holidays, remember that a heavier load will affect your car's handling ability, so be sure to check that the tread on your tires is still in good condition.
Whether it's a torrential downpour in Durban or bugs hitting the windshield, you need to ensure the best clarity and view of the road while driving. Check your windshield wipers for wear and tear the rubbers can become brittle from exposure to the sun, and end up smearing instead of wiping your windshield. Most windshield wipers need to be replaced every two or three years due to normal wear and tear, while the rubbers can last anywhere from six months to a year, depending on whether your car is parked outside most of the time and whether you live in a particularly warm area.
Air Conditioner Gas
South African summers can be brutal, and the last thing you want is to suddenly have your A/C die on you while your halfway to your destination. Getting your gas levels checked is quick and simple, with a gas refill not being overly costly.
This one may seem obvious, but if you're heading out on a long journey and are travelling on roads you're not familiar with, it's best to be sure that you won't run out of petrol in the middle of nowhere or end up high and dry in a traffic jam. Refuel often and be sure to check your GPS or maps for information on where petrol stations are located, so that you can plan appropriately.
Always check your car's oil levels before driving far, as your car's engine oil is crucial to ensure that everything runs smoothly and doesn't burn out or get damaged. Remember to check your oil levels once your car has been parked for quite a while, so that the oil returns to the tank - this will give you an accurate reading of your oil levels as checking it right after driving will mean that a lot of the oil hasn't pooled yet.
Aside from your tires, your braking system is extremely important to ensure that you drive - and stop - safely. Check for any irregularities by listening for noises when braking, and testing the responsiveness of your car when you brake. If your car makes screeching noises, veers to the side or seems to bounce when you try to brake to a halt, get your car inspected at a service centre before going anywhere. There are several potential causes for these incidents to occur, including worn brake pads, alignment issues or damage to supporting parts of your vehicle.
Wherever you're going, we hope you will travel safe. And if you're considering treating yourself or a loved one to a new or used car, remember that we have a huge range of brands including Mercedes used cars, in Johannesburg and everywhere around the country, to choose from.
Getting your car frequently serviced is important, and our teams of experts at Imperial car service & maintenance workshops around the country are always ready and able to quickly identify problem areas and correct any issues so you can get back on the road in no time.
Aside from routine maintenance by mechanical experts, there are several aspects of maintenance that you can - and should - take care of yourself in between those service periods.
Today we're focusing on the liquids your car requires and how to properly check and maintain liquid levels in your vehicle.
Aside from the most obvious liquid you need to keep your eye on, petrol, there are other liquids that help to keep your vehicle's parts lubricated and functioning properly, aid in cooling the engine, and assist in performing all the vital functions that keep your car operating as it should. Many of these liquids not only need to be topped up but sometimes entirely replaced in order to keep your car running smoothly.
As the name indicates, brake fluid is used by your braking system to ensure that your vehicle slows down and comes to a stop when you pump the brakes. Brake fluid is typically silicone-based, which maintains a more constant pressure level, allowing you to have a solid feel when pressing on the brake pedal. If brake fluid is no longer in optimal condition, you'll begin to experience sluggish pressure on the brake pedal and it will take longer for your car to come to a complete stop. The reason for this is that brake fluid is susceptible to moisture in the air, and over time, with a lot of braking, heat is generated by the braking system and water begins to transfer into the brake fluid. If this continues over a period of time, the efficacy of the brake fluid will degrade to a point where your car's ability to stop in time will be compromised quite heavily. Typically a car needs new brake fluid every two years, however this can vary. If you notice changes to the resistance level of your brake pedal or how quickly your car slows down and stops, get your brake fluid checked.
The most important liquid in your car is the engine oil. It lubricates all moving parts and helps in preventing degradation and rusting of components while ensuring your vehicle remains cool during all the heat-generating processes it undergoes while running. Modern engine oils now also contain special cleaning agents that prevent blockages of oil flow, helping your car to not only run smoother but also last longer. Check on your engine oil frequently by monitoring the dip stick and ensuring the oil is above the markings or dots on the stick - also remember to do your oil check when your car has been standing for a while, as checking it right after driving won't give you an accurate assessment. Engine oil varies in viscosity, so it's important to check your car's owner manual to find out what type of oil you need to use.
Massive amounts of heat are generated by your engine while it's running, and this heat needs to be dispersed in order to prevent your engine from overheating and failing entirely. Engine coolant absorbs all the heat from the engine and transfers it to the radiator, ensuring that your car's engine stays at a constant and safe temperature. To check your coolant levels, simply remove the radiator cap, or, with some models, look at the translucent gauge. Very important don't check your coolant levels right after driving as extreme heat builds up and opening the container at this time can cause serious injury or burns. Ideally, wait until first thing in the morning when your car has been standing for a while. Coolant levels should be checked about twice a year, ideally right before summer and right before winter.
The transmission fluid in your car keeps the gears moving smoothly. To check your transmission fluid, follow the same steps as when you check your engine oil, except do this check while your car is running. If you find the transmission fluid is low, immediately contact a mechanic or service centre. The fluid should be red in colour and not smell burnt - if you find the colour is brown or smells, it's time to replace the fluid.
If any of these fluids appear to be low or in need of replacement, contact Imperial car service & maintenance for swift and professional assistance.
So, you've decided that it's time to look into getting a replacement for your car, or perhaps you're caught up in the excitement of buying your very first demo car that you've seen for sale. Car purchases are one of the largest investments you'll make in your life, which is why you need to be certain of what you need and whether you can afford to drive that dream model you've had your eye on for a while now. Since this tends to be a costly decision, most people need financial assistance to afford a car, and vehicle financing is an ideal solution to help get you on the road.
We've compiled a few tips and a bit of advice to guide you through the application process if you're looking at getting financing for your new demo car
Determine What You Can Afford
People often miscalculate how much a new car will actually cost them each month if they focus their budget only on the price of the car. As a good rule of thumb, determine how much you can safely afford to pay each month, and double that amount so that your car insurance, petrol and maintenance or repair costs are also included. Do a bit of research on what car insurance rates typically are for the car you have in mind, and find out if parts for that vehicle are readily available and how affordable they are. Also bear in mind that you will be paying off your car for a fairly long period of time, so don't allocate a large portion of your gross income on loan repayments as life tends to bring unexpected surprises and expenses every now and then.
Keep A Healthy Credit Record
The application process for financing requires several details about your financial health, including a thorough inspection of any debts or credit facilities you have available. Credit cards, other loans, as well as credit accounts you may have with stores, are all taken into account to determine your affordability. If you have credit cards and store accounts, keep your repayments up to date or pay in more than the monthly minimum to ensure your credit score remains in your favour. If you're able to, pay some of your accounts in full and close them, to reduce your monthly credit repayments total. Having a few, well-maintained and updated credit accounts reflects more positively on your chances of being approved for vehicle financing.
Maximise Your Upfront Deposit
The larger the cash deposit you can supply upfront, the lower your instalments and overall debt will be. Save up where possible, trade your existing vehicle in for a good price and use those funds to back your deposit. Showing that you are able to pay a deposit also works greatly in your favour, as it indicates to financing suppliers that you are able to manage your money well. If you want to trade in your car and you've been paying instalments on it for longer than four years, the trade-in value and amount you'll get paid out will be more than your remaining debt owed on it. This means you'll be able to complete your finance payment on your existing vehicle and still have extra cash to use as a deposit for your new car. If you owe nothing on your existing car, you'll be able to cash in on the trade-in value and use those funds to boost your deposit. Be sure to shop around a bit and find out what the best trade-in price is for your car, and remember to compare offers to market standards for your make and model of car.
Get All The Required Paperwork Ready
Few things are as frustrating as taking time off work to get personal admin taken care of, only to be turned away because you didn't have all the necessary documents. Be completely prepared before applying for financing by ensuring you have the following available
Copies of your ID or Passport can be certified by officials at your local police station or through your bank, if they already have your personal details on record.
Any loan application requires proof that you are currently earning an income, whether employed or self-employed. You will need to provide evidence of your income by supplying the most recent three or six months' bank statements or payslips.
In order to verify where you reside, you'll need to supply either a copy of your lease if you're renting, or a municipal bill or phone bill with your name and address on it. Should you be in a position where you don't receive any bills addressed to you or if you stay in a house share, you will need to obtain a signed letter by the owner of the house, stating that you reside there. The letter will also need to be certified and should state the name and ID number of both the owner and yourself, along with the physical address of where you live.
As with your identification, this document also needs to be signed or stamped by a police official or bank. Also, be prepared to answer several questions about your credit status and any other credit accounts you currently have.
Getting the chance to buy demo car for sale or any other vehicle you've got in mind can be achieved. We offer financing services to our customers and are here to assist you with finding an affordable solution.
Along with technological development, cars become more advanced and offer an array of new features with each passing year. In the past decade alone we've gone from introducing MP3 player functions to what used to only be CD players and radios, while most new cars now come standard with Bluetooth for voice recognition and voice control for certain functions. Fuel efficiency continuously improves as new engines are developed each year (check out any Kia used car to see what we mean), and the driving experience overall has evolved from a fairly simplistic part of daily life to now being a completely integrated extension of your entire life.
Technology has so seamlessly merged our interests and activities that we now expect to be have Internet access wherever we go, play music on our home sound systems and relay it to our phones as we leave for work, then continue playing in our cars when we drive. If you're a technology geek, it's hard not to feel left behind when your car is a few years old and doesn't have any of these cool new features. But not everyone can afford to buy a new car or consider looking at used Kia as an option.
Fortunately there are alternate options to bring your car into the 21st century if you're willing to invest some time and cash to modify it a bit. Here are a few suggestions for technological features to add to your car
Bluetooth Hands-Free Calling Kit
Not only is it inconvenient to receive a phone call while you're on the road, but it's also dangerous and illegal to operate a phone at all if you're driving. New cars are equipped with Bluetooth features to allow drivers to make and receive calls at the press of a button, but this isn't a convenience afforded to older cars' drivers - until now. Bluetooth hands-free car kits are readily available and quite affordable, with a range of brands to choose from. There's also no installation needed for these, you simply clip the unit to your visor, connect your phone to it, and you're set to go.
A very useful device which can also be crucial in cases of accidents, dash cameras record as you drive, providing you with video footage of your journeys. As with Bluetooth hands-free kits, dash cams have now become quite a common device to have in your car and are therefore much more affordable and convenient to buy these days. Not only is it great to be able to record your trip if you're taking an adventurous drive to a new or scenic location, but dashcam footage can be the difference between receiving insurance payouts or not, due to the evidence it can provide in case of accidents.
Parking Assist Monitors
We've all seen the flashy upper-end vehicles that use infra-red technology to determine how far the car is from obstacles and to assist drivers with parking and driving safely. Fortunately, this is a feature you can also have, by buying a monitor kit. These essentially work the same and could be very useful, especially to those who struggle to parallel park or have injuries which make it difficult to turn and look behind them.
Touchscreen Smart Interface
Envious of all the new cars with their flashy LED touchscreens and voice recognition controls? While none of the older cars can compete technologically with what's close to Night Rider's KIT from back in the day, you're not entirely out of luck. If you use an Android smartphone, Google has a solution that will help you keep up with the pack. Android Auto is an app you can download from the Play Store, which will give you all the features of a smart car with the convenience of not needing to pay an extra cent for all these advances. Simply download the app, get yourself a car mount clip to secure your phone to your centre console, and you're all set to go with voice-controlled GPS, messaging, phone control, calling, and Google's smart AI reading your messages - including WhatsApp messages - for you while you're on the road.
If these upgrades aren't quite enough to satisfy your need for something more modern in a vehicle, take a look at our range of Kia used cars for sale - you may just find the perfect match for you!
We all take our cars - and their reliability - for granted, for the most part often forgetting that they are machines that generate tremendous power to get us to where we need to be every day. In spite of most of us owning or driving a car, many people aren't familiar with the warning signs that they should not ignore when it comes to their cars. What might initially appear to be a minor issue that can be ignored 'for now', could result in far more serious and costly damage in the near future. The team in our car repair workshop unpack some of the main indications that your car is in urgent need of a service or needs to get to a car repair workshop immediately.
Noises While Driving
Turn down your car's sound system every now and then and listen for any abnormal sounds while you're driving. Any scraping or dragging noise could mean your car's wheel bearing is failing while screeching noises indicate that something is wrong with your car's braking system.
Braking Takes Longer
We often forget how crucially important the braking system of our car is to ensure a safe drive for ourselves and those on the road with us. An appropriately responsive car that brakes in time can mean the difference between avoiding a fender bender or possibly ending up in a life-threatening accident. If you find your brakes seem to take longer to respond or that you have to pump them harder than you used to get the car to slow down or stop, it's best to take it in for an inspection as your brake pads may be worn.
Smoke From The Bonnet
Smoke is never a good sign, so if you find your car is suddenly producing smoke, your engine may be overheating and continued driving in this state can damage your engine beyond repair. Keep an eye on your dashboard and check if your engine light goes on, and also keep an eye on your car's temperature gauge. If your car is overheating, pull over at the closest safe location and allow it to cool down. Do not open the bonnet immediately after stopping as the heat and smoke could cause you physical harm. If you have road assist, call them to have your car towed to a local service centre.
Check Oil Light Comes On
Oil keeps your entire car's operational system lubricated and prevents overheating, friction and damage to the engine and all moving parts. If your car runs out of oil, get to a gas station and refill your oil immediately. Remember to have your car's oil checked frequently, water and tyre pressure checked when you refill.
Fluid Leaking Under Car
Keep an eye on what goes on under your car when it's been standing parked for a while. If there are puddles of oil or other liquid, it may mean a seal or other component has cracked. Book your car in for an inspection by an automotive professional, who will help determine the problem and offer a solution.
Difficulty Steering Your Car
If your vehicle seems to be 'fighting' you when you make turns or is veering to the left or right side when you're driving straight, you probably need your wheels alignment checked and may have damage to your axel. If you find your car seems to be uneven and lower on one side than the other, this may also be caused by damage to your axel or components supporting it.
Fuel Efficiency Is Reduced
If you used to be able to get by comfortably with half a tank a week but lately you seem to need double the amount of petrol to travel the same distance, your car probably needs to be tuned up and serviced. A full service can vastly improve your car's fuel consumption.
Trouble With The Ignition
While it's relatively normal for your car to maybe only take on the second start on a cold winter day, if you find you always need to keep turning the ignition to get the car started, you should book it for a service. Also bear in mind that you should reduce the weight of your keys as much as possible, as the keys in your ignition constantly weigh the unit down and may cause damage to it over time.
If you have any concerns about your car or just want to ensure it keeps running smoothly, contact us to arrange a service at our car repair shop. We have highly trained automotive specialists and a range of advanced testing equipment to quickly and accurately identify and correct any issues your car may have.