How To Keep A Pesky Air Bag Out Of Your Face

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So Olga is interested in disconnecting her air bag. It isn’t difficult any mechanic can do it.

But any mechanic who will do it is an idiot. “I wouldn’t touch one,” says Larry Perry, our own Magic Mechanic. “Too much liability.”

There are plenty of people in Olga’s situation. Experts suggest that if you aren’t sitting at least 10 inches from the air bag, you are too close, especially if your car is equipped with an older design air bag, as Olga’s Beretta is. Those air bags only know one speed of deployment, and that’s fast and hard. Newer, smarter air bags, installed in most vehicles after 1998, can recognize the force of a crash and know whether to deploy at full force for bad crashes, more gently for less serious crashes, or not at all.

If we agree that Olga’s situation needs rectifying and I can’t fully agree without seeing the car and where she’s sitting and talking to her doctor there are two solutions.

One, install a key operated air bag on/off switch. If Olga just disconnected her air bag, then sold the car, she could conceivably be liable if someone was hurt driving it someone who might have been hurt less had the air bag been working. With a properly labeled on/off switch, her liability is reduced.

Or two, install “pedal extenders.” These are devices that bolt onto the brake, clutch and accelerator pedals, moving their surface up however many inches you need. They’ve been used for decades by very short people. More and more new vehic pandora charms le manufacturers are following Ford’s lead and equipping new cars and trucks with power adjustable pedals, but you can’t put those on older cars.

The good thing about pedal extenders is that they are temporary. Remove them and the car is as it was, if you want to sell it. Also, you do not need permission from the government, as you do to install an air bag on/off switch. More about that in a moment.

The bad thing about pedal extenders is that they can feel awkward, I’m told. And if you have a taller person who also drives the car, they can feel really awkward. They can be removed and reinstalled, but it takes too long to do that regularly.

The air bag on/off switch is not difficult to install, but you don’t want to do it yourself. Even a “smart” air bag deploys with incredible force, and you don’t want to mess with one. And even if it deploys while you are working on it and you don’t get hurt, replacing a deployed air bag is expensive. Depending on what kind of car we’re talking about, it can cost $2,000.

To have a switch installed, you will ne pandora charms ed permission from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Or, manufacturers and installers of air bag switches usually have the forms.

How long does it take to get the form approved? “It can take a week,” says Raymond Goheen, president of Airbag Options, “or it can take five or six weeks, depending on how backed up they are.” Goheen says that NHSA pretty much rubber stamps the applications. “As far as we can tell, everybody who asks for permission to install a switch is approved.”

Goheen’s company has a technician in Tampa who will make house calls in Central Florida. To install a switch to turn off the driver’s side air bag costs $375. Switches for both air bags, $575. It generally takes less than an hour.

The NHTSA Web site gives phone numbers for companies that install air bag switches, including a couple in Florida. According to NHTSA’s most recent records, from December of 1997 to November of 1999, permission was given to install 3,222 air bag switches in Florida, the third most behind California and Ohio. Among all those askin pandora charms g permission, 77 percent did so because they sat too close, six percent cited “medical reasons,” and 16 percent cited both.

As for pedal extenders, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety lists a phone number 800 823 0427 to call for information. Anyone handy with tools should be able to install them. Be aware, though, that it will take some re training of your feet after decades of knowing just where the brake and accelerator pedals are, your feet will have to remember where they are after the pedals are extended.

How to Keep a Canopy from Blowing Away

Now what materials make for a good and heavy permanently installed canopy that will keep it from blowing away with the first little wind that blows up? Think of heavy materials. Yep that seems like an obvious choice, but a good heavy model can cost you a fortune if you are not careful. Some of the high end models can even be made from iron components. Iron component models do offer a lot of weight, but they are as equally hefty in the area of price.

Wooden models do offer up some stability when it comes to wind. All things being equal, wood is heavier than aluminum. So keep that in mind before you make a purchase.

Now here is the most important tip that I have to offer to help you keep your very expensive canopy from flying away and breaking into a thousand pieces. Think of sand. Yep, the same kind that you find at the beach or at a children’s playground is what I am talking about. What you need to do is buy the sand that is still in the plastic bag. This type of sand can be found at almost any home improvement warehouse. All you do is place the bags of sand on top of the base of the legs. If there is no place on the base to put the bags, just tie a rope around the bag and attach it to the base of the canopy.

That is a little trick that could save you hundreds of dollars. I have seen professionally designed supports go for over a hundred dollars sold in the mega sports warehouses.

The next thing that you can do to keep your canopy from blowing away is to anchor it properly. One thing that I have found with the different canopy models is the fact that they offer very little help or advice pandora charms on how to anchor the tent or covering properly. The first thing that you can do is to purchase some nylon string and a few tent stakes. This type of nylon string can be very strong even though it is thin and cheap looking. Attach the string to the top of the base. Don’t attach it to the canopy since this could cause it damage. Then drive the stakes into the ground at ninety degree angels. Attach the string to the stakes and pull it taught. Be careful not to pull it too tight because you could do damage.

Now here is a little tip on how to save a little money before you decide to purchase a canopy for your backyard. The best way to save money when buying a canopy is to purchase it during winter. Why, because they are out of sea pandora charms son and retailers will try to get rid of last season’s pandora charms models to make for next year’s spring models. I have seen top quality permanent and portable models go for hundreds of dollars below their original retail price. And take a look at canopies and ga pandora charms zebos for a better look at how to choose a gazebo for your patio.

How to Keep a Bear out of Your Tent while Camping

Camping is an adventure that you have to prepare for in advance. Before you set out on a camping trip you s pandora charms hould always check ahead for any hiking and camping restrictions, and find out about any bear activity in the area. Your personal safety also depends on recognizing signs of bears in and around your campsite. Encounters with bears can be dangerous, and you ne pandora charms ed to know how to react to avoid an aggressive confrontation. Bears can walk into camping areas at night to look for food, so in addition to being careful as you hike, it’s important to know how to keep bears out of your tent whil pandora charms e camping [source: Sanders].

Bears are always on the lookout for good things to eat, and will be attracted by the smell of food. Keep your food wrapped up and stored in airtight containers. Never leave food in your tent [source: NPS]. This is important because bears are less likely to appro pandora charms ach a group than to approach an individual [source: Sanders].