https://www.pellonautocentre.com/independent-garages-lead-mot-testing/

Independent Tyre Centres-Where Will the UK Tyre Market be Going Next as the giants battle it out?

Independent Tyre Centres-Where Will the UK Tyre Market be Going Next?

What part will Independent Tyre Centres Have!

This has always been a subject close to my own heart, I have worked in the tyre trade now for a good 40 years and like many more like me, we started our own tyre businesses in the seventies and eighties.

So we have now resigned as a member of the independent tyre group. Due to the fact that they were becoming too large and I thought ineffective.

Independent Tyre Centres
A well stocked depot

Most of us used to work for the national companies that were then owned by the leading tyre manufacturers and then decided that we could make a go out of running our own businesses and so the story goes. Many ex managers for companies like Tyreservices a Goodyear owned subsidiary and National Tyreservices, who were then owned by Dunlop, decided that if they could run a  depot for someone else then they could do it for themselves and so looked for premises and started their own  businesses.

Here in West Yorkshire. I can think of at least six people who worked for the national  retailers. Then leaving to start their own  businesses. Some also worked for the tyre manufactures. Of course, the likes of Morris Palmer in Hull, who left Goodyear tyres to form the famous Savoy tyres ! Now run by his son. This was happening all over the UK. Revolutionized the way that tyres were sold.  To the growing market and expansion of the car market. Most households had a car by then and business was good and profitable. So, I started a business that we called Kut-Kost tyres. Accordingly, we grew into three depots and made a good living.

The advance of the tyre wholesaler.

Life went on for a few years and as we were selling more tyres. Of course, then the manufactures were offering better deals . Many of us were tempted to buy in quantity. We were at this stage having to compete with the emerging Kwik Fit Tyre Discount stores . Including the ever more competitive Nationals.

Before computers! Local newspapers would have up six different adverts. Offering all sorts of deals to the motorists. Driving down the tyre prices! Followed of course by lower profit margins. Significantly, buying containers was a way of increasing our bottom line.

At this stage we were all on a different level and knew who was the competition and could price our products accordingly to compete. What we didn’t see was the growing number of

Independent Tyre Centres
A very busy tyre bay

wholesalers that were springing up all over the country and were growing at an alarming rate. I remember my first visit to Southam tyres in the old Rolls-Royce factory in the midlands and was in awe at the amount of stock he carried. Reg Bond also started his empire at round about the same time forming Bond International from an old warehouse in Pocklington ,North Yorkshire and the rest is history.

Many  retailers started to buy the better deals shifting their purchases from the manufacturers to the  wholesalers in our relentless search to maintain our profit levels.

Many other things were happening, but looking back I think that this was a mistake and it gave too much power and the wholesalers, who later decided to form their own retail outlets in direct competition to ourselves, but we are all fighters and with some ducking and diving we always seem to come up with some alternative supplies of tyres and battle on.

I then sold Kut-Kost to an emerging national company owned by Shell Oil, called Superdrive . Superdrive was to form a direct completion to Kwik-Fit, but failed to get the project together and eventually my old depots were bought from Superdrive by Kwik-Fit. I then purchased and developed the business that I am in now, Pellon Tyres here in Halifax and 25 years on fell that we are going through the same torrid times that we had to endure in the early days.

In the past two years the tyre market has seen some huge changes.

These changes have been brought on by the advent of the internet and the growing trend for the motorists to buy online. I have no problem with that and indeed as one of the Norths Independent Tyre Centres. I sell tyres online but not at a national level. But in the Yorkshire catchment area. The internet has now made it possible to buy tyres from the rest of Europe. of course, who are now in direct competition with the British wholesalers. In my opinion it is a good thing and drives down the price of tyres . So, making the tyre manufacturers the companies who are once again making the good profits. Of course, as they did in years gone by when they would deal with retail outlets direct.

More disruption in the tyre World ahead of us

I must admit that I was feeling vulnerable as I was stuck out on my own in little Halifax. Not knowing who was going to buy out what. Just like the seventies and early eighties. The next thing to come along! Has been the emergence of the Giant supermarkets wanting a slice of the tyre cake.

I must confess that I have embraced the chance of earning extra profit by fitting for these companies. But I have a feeling that we may be “bitten in the bum” by these companies. The latest rumor that I picked up. Was that the Tesco/Blackcirces combination were going to turn some Tesco sites into tyre fitting operations. Similar to Costco’s operations (as an update Michelin tyres have now bought Blackcircles). (So to update this then the Tesco-Black Circles deal never happened).

If this is a fact then I fear that it will start a new round of competition from the big tyre companies. All jostling to keep up their tyre numbers. I meanwhile think that I have made a good move by once again after many years dealing with the big five manufacturers. With all the benefits that brings with it.

As I said earlier we Independent Tyre Centres are tough and I am sure that whatever is thrown at us (now including the Corona Virus). We will struggle until these things disruptions pass, and we see better days again.

Continental Tyres Winners

Continental Tyres UK Ltd-Spies In Your Tyres? This Gizmo Will Help Your Car Drive Itself

Continental Tyres UK Ltd

Continental Tyres UK Ltd

A few years back, on a week long bus tour of Continental Tyres UK Ltd AG’s technology and engineering centers in Germany, one item attracted more attention from journalists than nearly any of the other whiz-bang connected-car stuff: A simple tire pressure monitor.

Eric Roberts‘s insight:

Continental Tyres UK Ltd new TPMS and more idea

This article written by Bob Gritzinger. Therefore, is all about the new ideas and inventions. Thrown about by the Auto industry at the moment. Consequently, this idea from Conti has now been tested on truck tyres. But at the moment I don’t know whether it has been a success or not. I suspect it will be effective. Because the concept of a monitor. Hence, vulcanised into the tyre. Relaying out information electronically about such things as tyre pressures and the inside temperature of the tyre is obviously of great benefit to the driver of the vehicle.

The device will be able to aid truckers. Because it will also be able to send the driver information. Thus, about the load that the tyre is carrying. Including  the traction details of the tyre, with this giving the driver the knowledge that the full load and road conditions can be checked as the truck is rolling along. I don’t know what sort of signals theIce road truckers would be getting from their in built TPMS tyres?

TPMS Valves becoming more common

The new Continental Tyres UK Ltd valve sends out the information. Hence, out by wireless signals. Therefore, is picked up in the cab by the driver on an in-car system very similar to the ones now where the TPMS Valves signals are fitted to the wheels. Continental Tyres UK Ltd says that this is all part the future that may introduce the driverless vehicle to our towns and cities. If an object penetrates a

tyre the system will pick up the loss of pressure and stop the car in some sort of safe area and the problem reported and fixed.

 

See on www.forbes.com

Conti Eco Contact 5-Motorists will be Saving fuel with these Continental Tyres

Conti Eco Contact 5

Conti Eco Contact 5
Another one of the great products developed by Continental Tyres

Saving fuel and reducing running costs is important to drivers. Our ContiEcoContact5 eco tyres are engineered to provide the best fuel economy possible.

Eric Roberts‘s insight:

Conti Eco Contact 5 and Michelin have amongst the best Rolling resistance in the  World of tyres

Rolling resistance is a word that we in the tyre World have been familiar with for many years now. It is only in recent years that the words have come to be synonymous with

Conti Eco Contact 5
Conti Eco Contact 5 fuel savers only perform with the correct tyre pressures

saving energy and less fuel consumption. The Conti Eco Contact 5 is the new fuel saving tyres from the Continental tyre company.

In recent years tyre manufacturers have published the rolling resistance of each individual tyre that they bring out. The tyres have to put the fuel efficiency on the left hand side of the new labels, the best starting at A and then downwards.

Over the years Michelin tyres have always been amongst the top performance when it comes to energy saving tyres with Bridgestone a close second as shown in the figures bellow from the excellent: The daily green website:

The best performer was the Michelin Energy Saver A/S, which delivered 53.8 mpg in a Prius, meaning a 4.74% improvement. The Bridgestone Ecopia EP100 was next, with 53.5 mpg and a 4.12%. On the other hand, both the Michelin HydroEdge with Green X and the Goodyear Assurance Comfor Tred (terrible name) actually did worse (down .59 and 2.64% respectively) than the control tires… http://www.thedailygreen.com/living-green/blogs/cars-transportation/low-rolling-resistance-tires-461009

Conti Eco Contact 5

Please do not forget though the thing that makes all tyres more fuel efficient is to keep your tyres correctly inflated at all times and that includes the Conti Eco Contact 5

See on blog.conti-online.co.uk

Which Tyre Choice-New tyres, Remould tyres or Part Worn tyres?

Which Tyre Choice

Which Tyre Choice

New tyres, Remould tyres or Part Worn tyres? Which Tyre Choice

To start off this article, Which Tyre Choice? I am going to say that in my opinion. So, you are better to use remoulded tyres (re-tread tyres have a new tread bonded to the old carcass remould tyres area full bead to bead re-mould ). Hence, than to buy un-regulated part worn tyres. If the part worns are sold under the 1994 laws that govern part worn tyres then that is fine. The 1994 legislation comes under the following law… The legislation

The Motor Vehicle Tyres (Safety) Regulations 1994. Set out minimum safety standards for the supply of part-worn tyres. To comply, it is important that you and your staff are fully aware of these Regulations.

“Under the Regulations. it is illegal to supply any part-worn tyre that is capable of being fitted to a motor vehicle or trailer unless the conditions detailed below are met”..

This only applies to the UK of course; the States will have their own legislation. Remould tyres are a good substitute for the older and vehicles that go off road. Remould tyres were at one time very popular. Older cars and vans and the increase in cheap imported new tyres from China. So, put an end to many remoulding companies here in the UK.

Which Tyre Choice
Tyre remoulding plants like this are very clean and modern and produce a safe product, would this be your Which Tyre Choice

Another good point about remoulds. Consequently, is that most tyres fitted to aircraft (large or small) are fitted with remould tyres. Of course, and the same applies to trucks. Many of the trucks that you see hurtling down the highway. Will be fitted with remould or re-tread tyres. You may have noticed the strips of tread. That are discarded at the side of our motorways, these are the tread that has stripped off the tyre carcass usually due to the tyre having a puncture or it has been run under inflated which has caused it to overheat and therefore come apart.

Which Tyre Choice-New tyres are what they are

brand new tyres and therefore will be extremely safe to use .the failure rate of new tyres is very low, in fact I have not seen a genuine faulty tyre for a few years now. Remould tyres are also very well made by the few companies that remain making them, the failure rate for car and van tyres is a bit higher than new tyres, bur still not worth bothering about. As I said earlier the problem I have is the sale of un-regulated part worn tyres, otherwise you will be safe on new or remould tyres. For further Which Tyre Choice and tyre safety information see…www.tyresafe.org

So in my opinion properly governed and legal part worn tyres have a part to play when funds are running low as in the Corona Virus.

 

Lithium-Sulfur Battery Race Heats Up For Faster Charging and Dis-Charging of Electric Car Batteries

Lithium-Sulfur Battery

Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are hot on the trail of a lithium-sulfur battery that packs four times the punch of conventional lithium-ion batteries.

Eric Roberts‘s insight:

Is the Lithium-Ion battery under threat from the Lithium-Sulfur battery?

A battery has been developed by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.  One of the USA owned Department of energy scientific facilities (ORNL for short).

Lithium-Sulfur Battery
With the advent of the Lithium-sulphur battery, cars like this will charge and discharge at much faster rates.

This new battery has been developed using a chemical that we all know as sulphur. Which is a very abundant and low costing material. The new battery has been tested as having at least four times the energy density as the new one that now powers many of our electric products the Lithium-Ion Batteries.

Scientists at the ORNL facility. Have been able to use new types of sulfur rich materials. Consequently, and were then able to join the new type sulfur cathode. With a lithium anode together with a solid electrolyte material. So, to produce an energy dense solid type. Because the scientists have used sulfur the resulting product. Of course, is much safer and more cost effective that the lithium-Ion batteries. Hence  in use at the moment. Considered a great breakthrough.

Sulphur comes from waste

The sulphur that is used is a waste product from the petro-chemical industry and so is almost free of charge. This makes it possible to re-cycle a waste product (sulphur) into a useful new battery.

The new batteries are not on the market just yet. But a patent has been applied for. Subsequently, it is thought that this excellent new invention will be available. Naturally, for commercial purposes in the near future.

One of the problems that the scientists have come across, is that Lithium-Sulfur Battery compounds can leak out from where they should be, which causes the batteries charge to deteriorate. The researchers set out to find it a possibility to restrain these escaping compounds.

To get round the problem, the scientists have  made very small, hollowed shells out of a type of carbon, which will conduct the element. The researchers then coated them with a film of polymer to help keep the Li-S compounds inside.

See on cleantechnica.com

Car batteries Care-Caring for your batteries during the winter months

Car batteries Care

Car batteries Care during the winter months

The Rome Observer

(METRO) — Few things can be more frustrating than jumping into the driver’s seat on a frosty morning, turning the key in the ignition and failing to hear the engine roar to life.

Car batteries Care-Why do your Car Batteries fail in the Winter?

As silly as it may seem many drivers hardly use their cars. Hence, in the winter months. Indeed some drivers lock the cars away in the garage, (if they have one).

car batteries
This is where most scrap car batteries end up? but 95% of them are recycled a great achievement?

Nothing can be more stressful. As a result trying to start your car on a cold winters morning. Therefore, only to find that your car wont start. Of course, it is one of the saddest sounds that you as a driver will hear. When the battery just makes a slow grinding noise. Hence, made by the starter motor. As it tries to start up your car. Normally the engine just zips up. Hence, at the turn of the key and off you go. So but not this morning, it’s frosty and -2 C or bellow. Therefore, the car will not start up.

This is the scenario .That thousands of motorists a day will experience. Of course, a bit of knowledge goes a long way. Setting out a few facts can help the motorist understand. Consequently, a little more about their 12 Volt Battery car batteries. Including, how they respond to the climate. The two extremes of weather conditions, the cold and the heat will affect your car batteries performance.

Here in the UK we rarely experience excess heat, so I will concentrate on the cold.

In cold weather the chemical action in the battery will be slowed down and I have actually seen the battery liquid (sulphuric acid) frozen solid.

Car batteries Care-The corrosion on this battery must be removed

So of keeping your car in a garage if possible, either in really cold weather or overnight. What happens is that although it may be cold in the garage, the heat from the engine when the car was run the day before, will act as a heater for the battery as the engine compartment will still retain the heat.

If the battery is over five years old then it should be replaced with a new battery, most car batteries will fail after the five year period, and this is what we have found over the years, also imported cars from the Far Eastern countries such as Japan, China and South Korea are imported with 038 car batteries that are lower specifications that the ones made for the European market, these batteries do not stand up to the cold weather and usually fail early on in the cars life.

The best thing that drivers can do is to have their car batteries checked before the onset of winter and replace It if necessary, but in really severe cold as experienced in the USA recently, then the battery could still fail without further protection from the cold.

 Car batteries Care-A few things to look out for when buying your new battery.

Make sure that it is the correct battery for the car and has the same power, the same number of amps and cold cranking amps. It will be all right to go bigger if it will fit the cars battery compartment as long as the battery has the same voltage, usually 12volts and 6volts on classic cars and vintage cars.

Here are a few more tips if the weather forecast is for really cold conditions. You can use a battery blanket, to cover the battery and stop it freezing. You could also use a trickle charger, because the battery will retain some heat as the battery is been charged up, and stop it from freezing. If your car is stored in the garage for a period of time then disconnect the car battery and try to keep it on a trickle charger when the battery is in storage, you can buy cheap intelligent chargers now that will do this job.

See on www.romeobserver.com

How Eco Tyres Achieve Eco

Changing car tyres-When Should You Change Your Car Tyres? | Automotive Tools review

Changing car tyres

Changing car tyres and then report that they regularly check them. Here is a list about what you should be …

Eric Roberts‘s insight:

When indeed do we think about  Changing car tyres?

This is an interesting article from Automotive Tools Revue. You would think that it would be easy to determine when your tyres need changing, but it is the same as everything in life, some people know what to do, or what they are looking at and other people do not and have to ask for advice.

Watch for the Pellon Tyres sign Fortunately we are one of those trades that are only willing to help people with their tyre problems ! So, most tyre companies are only too willing to give a free tyre report for their customers. Many independent tyre retailers are affiliated to an organization . However, look out for an independent local garage. Many also have their own web site. Where you can find your nearest tyre retailer. Who will only be too willing to give your car a free tyre check . Also recommending when you should be Changing car tyres.

Look out for an Independent tyre depot in your area

If you do not have an independent tyre retailer in your area. Then I am sure that a local garage will do the job for them at no cost to the customer.

The first thing to look at before Changing car tyres. Of course, is to check your tyres and see if your tyres are worn on one side. Naturally, they will look as if they have no tread cut into the tyres. This is a sure sign that your tyres will need replacing ! Significantly, the car will also need a wheel alignment. This is a sign that the tyre have been scrubbed off at one side, because the wheel alignment was not set correctly.

The other way to check to see if it may be necessary for  Changing car tyres is to look for the small bumps of rubber that are set between the tread at 1.6 mm deep, this is the British Governments law for the tread depth that your tyres should be at, although we in the trade think that it should now be 3 mm because of the change in driving conditions since the last tyre laws were passed. These laws are pretty much the same in the USA and much of Europe to help keep the high standards of safety.

To conclude the best way  to check your tyres. Including winter tyres. So, is to take your car to your tyre retailer and they will check them for you free of charge.

 

See on www.tucfcpug.org

Britains Motorists-forking out hundreds on unexpected car repair costs – Easier (press release)

Britains Motorists

Britains Motorists

British motorists forked out hundreds of pounds last year repairing whining engines, wonky wheels and patching up scrapes and dents, according to a recent…

Eric Roberts‘s insight:

Car Servicing has been put on the back burner by Britains Motorists?

So, in this good article. Hence, by the” countrywide independent garage scheme” . They carried out a straw poll of 100 UK motorists. Consequently they found that many of them had car repair bills of up to £500! In fact 64% of them, to be precise. Of course, this is no surprise to me . As I believe that many UK motorists have failed to have their cars serviced, in the past two years.

This neglect will lead to all kinds of problems affecting  their cars and the cars performance. We see the effects of this all the time, but I think that the most common problem is the brakes. If the cars brakes are checked on a service, then the usual things that need replacing are the pads, this together with a good brake cleaning is usually all that is required. The problem then is that if the car is not serviced, then the Brake pads wear even further down before getting down to the metal plate. This then affects the brakes especially the Disc Brakes.

New Brake Discs and Car Brake Pads fitted

 

then becomes metal on metal then the discs get damaged and they may need replacing. Other problems include the brake cylinders overheating and leaking and the problems can go on and on, always leading to a bigger repair bill for the UK motorists.

This is also a problem with the modern engines. The engines these days are controlled by a computer system in the car and if the filters and oil are not changed then the parts that are part of the engine management system can start to fail and the engine light will illuminate in the cars dashboard, often causing panic amongst the drivers who come into us garages to have the problem checked out. Sometimes the problem is a simple one and the car only requires an oil and filter change and other times it could be more complicated, but in the main most of the causes are due to the car not having a service and general neglect.

Although we are not members of the country wide garage scheme, we are not now a member of the Unipart Car Care Centres (UCCC), but we all share the same thoughts and know what the problems are likely to be if the car is not serviced.

Mot will find any mechanical problems

 

Another slightly worrying trend amongst car drivers is the concept of using the annual MOT Test as a gauge for the condition of their car. The MOT test is not the same as having a regular service, and although the test is fairly strict it is not the same as having a good service say once a year. The UK motorists  can then keep an eye out on such things as your oil levels and tyre pressures and check your own light bulbs.

We all understand that money is tight but in my opinion the failure to service your car will lead to the UK motorists having bigger problems and bigger repair bills.

 

 

See on www.easier.com

Hybrid Car Servicing

EV Batteries?- How Cheap Are they really?Climate Denial Crock of the Week

ev batteries

I’m finding Chevy Volt replacement ev batteries online for about $2,300. $2,300/16 kWh = $144/kWh. Retail. On the GM Parts Store site a replacement battery for the 2012 Chevy Volt is listed at $2,305.88.

Eric Roberts‘s insight:

Why a replacement ev batteries any how ?

EV batteries prices

This article shows the prices for the  EV Batteries replacement but I was wondering why would you need a replacement anyhow?

According this good and in depth article a replacement battery would cost $2000 and more, but why would you have to buy one? The old  EV Batteries should be replaced free of charge if found faulty, like any other part of the car. Some of the European car makers, such as Renault, lease the batteries out when they sell an Electric Car, so I can only assume that the same warranty reasons will apply to them.

ev batteries

In my opinion, when the EV batteries will need replacing in a few years’ time, then the technology that is carried out at the moment will have drastically reduced the battery prices by that time. All this new development will probably reduce the size of the batteries, to a more realistic and affordable size. Johnson controls are developing a Lithium-Ion battery at the moment that is much smaller than its predecessors.

 

 

The only reason I can think of for an EV car to need  new EV Batteries, is after an accident.

 

Because of the battery power train size there is likely to be damage caused by an accident. This brings me to the cars insurance, is the possible scenario of a crashed EV car requiring an expensive battery going to put insurance premiums, or will the cost be spread amongst us all?

There is no doubt that the EV car will play a significant part in the future of fuel efficient cat technology, with batteries that can last for years due to the advent of silicon “Nano” battery technology and car manufacturers will keep up with these improvement trends.

The charging rates are also getting much better, with charging time expected to get down to as low as 15 minutes for an 80% charge but my money is still on Hydrogen cell technology. However, this is a good article and worth a click to read.

 

See on climatecrocks.com

Solar Panels to be fitted on the roof of this Ford Concept Car

solar panels

BBC News

Ford Is Making A Concept Car With Solar Panels For A Roof

Huffington Post

What do Superman and the Ford C-MAX Solar Energi concept car have in common? Both receive power from the sun.

Eric Roberts‘s insight:

Solar panels on car roofs a great idea but not a new idea

So, in my opinion this idea from Ford motor company is one of the biggest step forwards yet. Especially, in the quest for the electric cars! Enabling, them to cover more mileage.

Significantly, this car could be run on solar energy from Solar Panels . Even when the car is running about ! Consequently, the batteries will also be charged. Developments like this will be a big step in the right direction ! So, I can envisage all EV’s and all electric cars will have this technology. Incorporated in the cars electric system. Aiding charging.

This is not the first time that solar panels have been used to power cars

 

So, I believe that it will be the first time that a major car manufacturer. Has incorporated solar panels onto an actual model.

Consequently, a guy called Ed Passerini ! Was probably the first man to invent the first solar powered car ! Way back in 1977. After building several smaller prototype cars. He eventually built the solar car known as Bluebird.

More recently in 1983 two Australian’s, Hans Tholstrup and racing driver, Larry Perkins . Managed to drive a solar powered car from Perth to Sydney. Totaling 2566 miles a great achievement ! The vehicle was called the “Achiever”. Equipped with a solar cell panel fitted to the roof. Hence, that charged 2 x 12 volt lead acid leisure batteries.

Batteries charged for use after dark

So the charged batteries were to be used for use when the Sun was behind clouds or even in darkness. Many of today’s Solar Panels and solar energy equipment had not even been invented back then, so the electrics they used were pretty basic. They had an electric motor to drive the car with a basic type gearbox that could only have the gears changed when the vehicle was stopped. The acceleration was done by either using 24 volts or 12 volts, the 24 volt was the fastest option, depending on the amount of battery storage.

Other recent tries at utilizing solar energy were carried out by the larger auto companies such as Ford, using them in the headlights.

See on www.huffingtonpost.com