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Diagnostic Car Tool, What is it? Benefits Of A Car Diagnostic Scanner

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OBD2 scanner bluetooth

All modern cars have some form of computer control system usually referred to as the ECM (Electronic Control Module). The ECM controls the operation of the Powertrain or what you and I would call the engine and transmission.

Although there are some parts of the Powertrain that each vehicle manufacturer has to monitor there are others that are optional or specific to each manufacturer.

So, as with almost anything that has a computer control system, it is inevitable that it will have some form of diagnostic system built in so that when a problem occurs it can be easily pinpointed and fixed. The term used for a vehicles diagnostic system is OBD or On Board Diagnostics.

When a fault is picked up by the OBD, a warning signal on the vehicles dashboard lights up. This is usually referred to as the MIL or Malfunction Indicator Light.

To help us find out what the error is, a diagnostic car tool is required. If you are a competent DIY mechanic or someone who knows about electronics/computer systems then you can buy your own diagnostic car tool as their price has become affordable considering the cost to get a dealer or car mechanic to do it each time the MIL comes on.

Why Do We Need OBD?

Vehicle on board computer systems were originally introduced in the late 1960’s and throughout the 1970’s and 1980’s more vehicle manufacturers started to introduce electronic systems to monitor their engines functions so that they could diagnose problems earlier. In the late 1980’s the California Air Resources Board (CARB) required all new cars to have a form of OBD. This was usually referred to as OBD 1.

In the mid 1990’s, to meet the increasing stringent EPA emission standards and to have a state-wide emissions testing program the CARB issued the OBD-II / OBD2 standard. In 1996 the OBDII/OBD2 standard was made mandatory for all new cars sold in the USA. In 2001 a similar standard was also implemented in Europe known as EOBD. This sophisticated standard provides almost complete engine control and also monitors parts of the chassis, body and accessory devices, as well as the diagnostic control network of the car.

Benefits Of A Car Diagnostic Scanner

Put yourself in this picture…. You’re driving home from a holiday, its pitchblack, you have your family with you and you still have a long journey before you get home. Suddenly the engine warning light or MIL light flashes on, your heart sinks as you think oh no!, what could be the problem and will you be able to get home?

Luckily you had the foresight to buy an OBD2 car diagnostic scanner that has a description of all possible faults built in. After plugging the OBD2 scan tool center into the car, you find out that the problem is not so serious and you can continue your journey.

Of course the problem could have been more serious but as you knew what it was from your scanner you would be able to give the breakdown service an accurate diagnosis of your car’s problem. This would then enable them to make sure they had the necessary tools and parts to attend to your car properly.

So having a good car diagnostic scanner, which you carry with you, allows you to diagnose any problems that occur and to then make an informed decision as to the correct route to take to resolve the issue.

What I mean by this is you either continue your journey safe in the knowledge that the problem is not serious and can be fixed when you get home. If a serious problem has been detected by the OBD2 scan tool center you can call the breakdown service and give them a more accurate description of your problem than just saying “the engine warning light has come on”

P.S. This really did happen to me 🙂

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Lifestyle

6 Ways to Help Your Aging Grandparent

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It can be difficult watching a grandparent age or their health decline gradually, so it is only natural you will want to help them in their daily lives.

As they will have spent many years caring for both you and your parents, it might now be your opportunity to return the favor and provide them with support when they need it. Here are six practical ways to help your aging grandparent.

1. Visit Regularly

Regular visits might be the best thing you can do to help your aging grandparent, especially if they are living alone. Dropping in for a chat could curb loneliness, as they might love spending an hour or more chatting to you about your day. Regular visits will also allow you to monitor their physical and mental health effectively.

How to help your grandparents at home, How to treat your grandparents

2. Take Them Out

If your grandparent has lost some of his or her independence, you should take them on a fun day out. For example, you could arrange a family dinner at a restaurant, enjoy a stroll around a park, or you could even drive them to the store to stock up on their groceries. A little fresh air and a change of scenery could do wonders for their quality of life.

3. Identify and Resolve Unsafe Areas

As your grandparent might becoming increasingly fragile, you have a responsibility to identify potentially hazardous areas, such as uneven steps, loose floorboards, or rogue electrical wires. You should then resolve the issue immediately to prevent falls at home.

4. Don’t Be Afraid to Become Their Voice

Unfortunately, elderly relatives are not always able to speak up for themselves as they age. If you suspect they are experiencing physical, emotional or financial abuse at home or in a nursing home, you should aim to become their voice when they cannot use their own. For example, you could consult Garcia Law, a nursing home abuse attorney, who will ensure your relative will no longer suffer in silence.

5. Attend Doctor’s Appointments with Them

It is essential your aging grandparent attends routine doctor’s appointments to ensure they remain in good health. For this reason, you should try to attend the appointments with them to help them travel from A to B while showing your support.

What’s more, it will help you to stay up-to-date with their health, so you will know the medications they need to take, and the lifestyle changes they might need to make.

6. Perform Housework

Every time you visit, take a look around their home to see how you can help your grandparent with household chores. For example, you could wash their dirty dishes, vacuum their rooms, make beds, or wash their clothing.

If in doubt, ask your loved one if there are any tasks they would like you to complete during your visit.This will take some of the pressure off your elderly relative, so they can simply relax and watch some TV, read a good book, or catch-up with their friends.

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Lifestyle

7 Ways To Create a Cosy Home

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Cozy home decor, How to make your home cozy and inviting

When winter time comes around, all anyone wants to do is snuggle up beneath a sheepskin rug by the fire. But what if you don’t have a sheepskin rug? Or a fire? Not to worry, as there are many innovative ways in which you can create a cosy space without having to live on the front cover of a Christmas card. Coming home to a warm and inviting space is one of the most rewarding things when it’s cold and miserable outside. Here are 5 ways to help you achieve a cosy home:

1. Blankets

If you want to keep warm without cranking up the heating or putting on every sweater you own, then invest in some cosy blankets which you can throw over your sofa. If you pick the right pattern or colour to go with your room, they can look great when they’re not being used, too. Creams, subtle patterns and tartan are great all-rounders that can fit in almost any setting.

2. Cushions

Another way to make your sofa warmer and more inviting is to go big on the cushions. Oversized pillows can really create a space which you can sink into which will feel a million miles from the cold outdoors.

3. Carpet

Carpeting not only looks cosy, it is also the best way to help insulate your home. Whereas floor boards let a lot of heat escape, carpet holds it all in, which makes your home warmer and in turn reduces your heating bills – it’s a win-win!

4. Lighting

Warm, soft lighting can make a world of difference when it comes to creating a cosy feel. Whereas cold daylight bulbs may be great during the summer, warm, golden lighting is best in the winter months. If you want the best of both, then use colder lighting offset by warm lamps, which can be used to create pockets of rosy light on a winter’s evening.

5. Heating

Heating is obviously one of the easiest ways in which to make your home warm and cosy. Why not go a step further and install under floor heating in your bathrooms? It certainly makes getting out of the warm shower on a cold night a whole lot easier. Heated towel rails are another great way to bring heat into your bathrooms, while electric blankets can give your bed an ultra-cosy feel.

6. Colours

The colours used in your home can also make a big difference to how cosy it feels. By opting for warmer creams or even yellows and oranges, you can make a space feel warm and inviting. Likewise, pops of gold and rose gold can really help to deepen the warmth of a space. If you have light walls, then opt for warm-coloured furnishings and accessories to create a warmer feel.

7. Photos

Using family photos to decorate your walls and shelves is another great way to make a room feel homely and inviting. Plus, the happy memories this brings will certainly help you to make it through the cold, grey winter.

There are so many small touches you can add to prepare your home for winter, so don’t wait till it’s too late – get prepping now!

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Lifestyle

What to Do When Your External Drive Is Broken

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We capture and store a lot of digital files these days. Over 70% of our lives, from the photos we capture with our phones to the vacation videos from a couple of years ago, are stored digitally. Having a reliable storage solution is a must and many of us rely on external USB hard drives as a solution.

Even the most reliable hard drive can fail. If you have had one of your storage media or external drives fail you before, you know how dreadful – and stressful – the situation can be. Worry not, because you have more options than you realize in this type of circumstance.

Spot the Signs Early

You can actually recognize signs that your hard drive is failing early. When you do, you may still have the option to back up your files to another, newer external drive for safekeeping. This is obviously the easiest way to go, so knowing the signs and how to spot them is important.

One of the major signs that your hard drive is failing is a much slower read and write speed. While a slow drive doesn’t always mean that it is failing, a difference in read and write speed (a noticeable one nonetheless) should prompt you to make an additional backup of the drive immediately.

Other signs are more physical and apparent. You may hear a knocking sound coming from the drive when it is reading or writing data. The drive may even make a louder noise than usual or emit more heat than usual. These too are signs to watch out for.

In a worst-case scenario, your drive may be unreadable all of a sudden. If you are using a Windows computer, Windows usually asks you to format the drive before you can use it. Don’t format the drive just yet. In this case, unplug the drive safely and take it offline.

Data Recovery Options

Your drive fails and there is a serious risk that your files may be gone forever; what should you do next? It is time to take a look at your options.

You want to start by testing the cable you use to connect your drive. Sometimes, the cable is the culprit and replacing it is all you need to do to get the drive working again.

If it isn’t the cable, then you need to start weighing some data recovery options. There are software programs that enable you to do it yourself, but the best way to go is by getting the assistance of professional and secure data recovery service provider.

Sending the Drive for Recovery

Here’s the good news: the best recovery service providers can restore most – if not all – of your files without an issue in most cases. The files aren’t accessible with the drive being broken, but they are still there and can be moved to another drive.

Package the drive with bubble wrap and make sure it will stay protected as you send the drive for recovery. Either ship the device yourself or call the recovery service provider to schedule an on-site pick-up for the drive. Wait for the recovery process to be completed and you should have your files back and safe.

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