Published on March 7th, 2014 | by John Robinson
Anyone who has ever driven a car with a manual transmission knows how to use the clutch. Unfortunately, not everyone understands how it works, much less how to fix it if it’s broken. It doesn’t hurt to know a little bit about the clutch’s operation so you know exactly when to get professional clutch repairs before it totally quits on you.
How the clutch works
Cars need a clutch because the engine spins all the time, but the car’s wheels don’t. To make the car stop without stopping the engine, the engine needs to disconnect itself from the wheels. The clutch allows you to smoothly engage a spinning engine to a non-spinning transmission by controlling the slippage between them.
Warning signs of a clutch failure
The clutch is an important component of your vehicle. To make sure you’re not driving with a failing clutch, here are some warning signs that mean your clutch needs a replacement.
- Burning smell –Your clutch emits a burning smell due to an overheated clutch plate. This can happen because you “ride the clutch” too much – driving along with your foot partially on the clutch most of the time. In such a case, professionals specializing in transmission and clutch repairs are your best resort.
- Excessive slippage – A clutch that slips is a sure sign of a clutch failure. Just as your car’s brakes begin to slip when the material starts to wear out, clutch disks also wear down and cease to bind to the flywheel.
- Disengagements – Your car’s hydraulic connections can also fail, resulting in a pressure shortage that prevents the clutch from disengaging. While this may not be an indication of a complete clutch failure, hydraulic issues and leaks still demand a repair.
It helps to identify the early warning signs of a clutch failure so you’ll know when to take it for a replacement. By paying attention to how your car behaves and doing regular maintenance, you can avoid paying for a costly clutch repair or replacement.
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Published on March 6th, 2014 | by Wileene Grace Olimpo
Image by United States Navy | Wikimedia
Fast food giant McDonald’s has hinted that it might increase its salaries because of the growing protests over income inequality.
McDonald’s said the public focus on the issue “may intensify” over the coming months.
It said the long-term trend was “toward higher wages and social expenses in both mature and developing markets, which may intensify with increasing public focus on matters of income inequality.”
Minimum wage debate
Several fast food workers across the United States have been protesting that the minimum salary should be increased to $15 per hour.
The company said such protests “can adversely affect us or the suppliers, franchisees and others that are also part of the McDonald’s system and whose performance has a material impact on our results.”
A raise in the minimum wage could mean not only higher prices for consumers, but also increased unemployment rates in the sector, which might cause the employees’ fight for a higher salary backfire.
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Published on March 4th, 2014 | by Lillian Johnson
Air conditioner breakdowns happen due to different reasons. Some of them are more common than others. By determining these reasons, you can protect your units from breaking down – or at least refer the issue to a trusted air conditioning service centre.
If your unit is not behaving the way it’s supposed to, here are some of the most possible causes.
Your unit’s fan has stopped working
Your unit’s outside fan works by transferring the warm air in your household to the outside. The moment it stops working, the process totally breaks down, necessitating an immediate fix. Shut off the unit and check all connections for any damage like burnt wires. Make sure to check the connections in the compressor terminal box as well. If you’re not familiar with the fix, hiring the services of a professional air conditioning repair and installation company is your best option.
Your unit’s coil is frozen
Frozen coils usually indicate a problem with your unit’s airflow. With limited airflow, the coils and fins can become too cold and lead to ice build-up. Make it a habit to turn off the unit temporarily to let the ice melt. Clean your unit regularly to remove obstructions that limit the airflow.
Your unit needs refrigerant
Refrigerant is the chemical responsible for cooling your home. If your unit doesn’t produce the comfort you need, this is usually a sign of low refrigerant levels. Check if ice has built up around your unit’s condenser coils then shut the unit off to allow the ice to melt before starting it up again. If the issue still persists, you may have to add refrigerant to resolve the problem.
Apart from watching out for these problems, it’s important to seek professional assistance to keep your unit in its top condition. Keep in mind that improper installation and ignoring minor issues can result in costly problems in the long run.
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Published on February 28th, 2014 | by Rick Livingston
Nashville, Tennessee-based Reboot Marketing LLC started in 2008 with just a single employee. After five years, it has reached the top 500 fastest growing companies in the U.S. according to Inc.com.
How It Happened
Reboot Marketing ranked 304th on the Inc. 500 list for 2013, which measures the revenue growth of companies from 2009 to 2012. To qualify for this, companies need to be independent, privately held, and based in the U.S.
Message from Reboot Marketing
“Our goal is to change lives one family at a time with our products,” Partner Allen Baler of Reboot Marketing said. “Many people are concerned about the future of our country. There are a lot of things we can’t change, but we can achieve peace of mind by being prepared for any situation.”
“Generating your own power so that you’re not dependent on a vulnerable electrical grid, gathering together a sustainable food supply to make sure you’re prepared for emergency situations such as we’ve seen in recent years with Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina… these are the types of things that we offer to help people become self-reliant.”
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Published on February 27th, 2014 | by Lillian Johnson
Under the law, there’s no “tender years” presumption or prima facie right of the parents to the custody of the child. When determining child custody, the sole criterion of New York family courts is the “best interests” of the child.
To determine child custody, the family courts will assess the character, temperament and sincerity of the parents, and focus on these nine factors:
- Quality of the home environment
- Quality of parental guidance
- Financial status of the parents
- Ability of the parents to provide for the emotional and intellectual development of the child
- Individual need of the child
- Desire of the child
- Age and maturity of the child
- Potential for influence on the child
- Sibling relationship
To determine child custody, the family courts may also appoint a mental health professional to interview the family members and to make recommendations in certain cases. The mental health professional may also administer psychological tests, like the Rorschach Inkblot Test, in which they will record and analyze the parents’ perceptions of inkblots. Based on the personality characteristics of the parents, they will then find or rule out any underlying mental disorder as defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, 1994 (DSM-IV).The presence of a mental disorder doesn’t determine to which parent the family courts will award child custody, however. Under certain circumstances, a parent with bipolar disorder can still become the custodial parent.
To determine child custody, the family courts may also conduct what Long Island family law attorneys call a “Lincoln hearing.” In a Lincoln hearing, the judge will interview the child privately, with only the family law attorney of the child and a court reporter present. After the interview, the courts will seal the record of the hearing and transmit it to the appellate court if there’s an appeal.
Child custody is a complex family law matter that involves many processes and considerations. With that said, think about contacting a legal professional specializing in family law to understand the issue better.
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Published on February 26th, 2014 | by Alesha Turman
It takes more than just a good idea or strategy to succeed in business. To achieve growth and success, you need to be flexible and have good planning skills. Here are a few ways to ensure that your business grows.
Don’t Depend on Your Plan
While your business plan will dictate most of your business strategy, don’t solely rely on it. Even the best plan can sometimes fail due to a number of reasons. What you should do is adjust, confront, and conquer. Always be aware of the shifts in the market industry to know if you need to make some changes.
Listen to Others
Business advisors and accountants are helpful to examine your business pursuits and push you to greater accomplishments. Even if your business is doing okay, you will need the help of others to ensure success. Hire accountants or tax agents to help you manage your finances, or a business consultant to know more about business strategies.
Understand how your business is doing by keeping track of everything. This will also help you determine the new strategies you need to implement to increase growth. Identify your numbers and evaluate them regularly and base your decisions mostly on your records.
Your job as manager or business owner is to delegate tasks and inspect progress. Delegating effectively means that you can get more than what you expect. Have a written orientation plan so your employees will know their tasks. You can also use a reward system to encourage them to work harder.
Make Use of Technology
The Internet is a cost-efficient way to grow your business if you use it to your advantage. Social media networking such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube can help you create a community and build recognition and recall for your business. Explore the different ways to use technology to reach to a wider audience.
Reinvent Your Business
Focus on your net profit and change the direction of your company if the times already dictate this. Before implementing a business strategy, however, make sure that you analyse and evaluate your existing situation. Create a new competitive strategy and implement it slowly.
No matter how competitive the market is, you can still succeed. Follow the right path and always be open to new ideas to pursue the growth of your company.
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Published on February 26th, 2014 | by Alesha Turman
“The complete disregard for accountability at eBay is the most blatant we have ever seen.” This is what billionaire investor Carl Icahn said in an open letter he issued to global e-commerce company eBay. He accused eBay Inc. Chief Executive John Donahoe of ignoring conflicts of interest on the company’s board.
Icahn revealed that two long-time board members, Scott Cook and Marc Andreessen, had business interests that directly competed with eBay. The activist investor said he found “multiple lapses” in the company’s governance and called on both Scott and Andreessen to resign from the board. He also urged investors to vote for his two board nominees.
eBay, in turn, accused Icahn of “mudslinging,” saying that the billionaire was attacking two “impeccably qualified directors.” “If he’s increasing his stake, and being more aggressive, it increases probability that he actually gets something done,” said Robert W. Baird & Co analyst Colin Sebastian.
Scott is the founder, former CEO, and current board member of Intuit Inc., while Andreessen is one of Silicon Valley’s most prominent venture capitalists.
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Published on February 24th, 2014 | by Joseph Francis
Injuries are always a hidden danger for people who workout. Getting injured at the gym or while playing sports is fast becoming more common. You probably think you’re doing your exercises safely and not putting yourself at risk. But the truth is, you’re making training mistakes all the time, it’s just that they haven’t caught up to you yet.
To help you avoid injuries, here are some of the most common but unnoticed training mistakes you should keep in mind every time you set foot in the fitness center or on the field.
Hamstring strains are the number-one muscle injury in most contact sports, particularly football. Whether in the gym or in the field, these often occur due to strength imbalances and improper form. Say you’re a member of the New York Giants, the Knicks, or even the Yankees, you’re always at risk for this injury because of the strain on your calf muscles. As you run, increase your speed, and lengthen your strides, you put greater loads on the hamstring muscles. Too much pressure on the muscles and it rips.
Prevent this by doing strength exercises and neuromuscular training. Nordic curls, standing deadlifts, and exercise ball curls all help to strengthen the muscle. It’s also important for runners and gym goers to have someone check their form to minimize the risk for injuries. If you’re starting to feel something on your muscles, consult with pain management doctors in NYC and have your personal trainer check it out before it leads to something worse.
This injury occurs when the ankle rolls or twists inward or outward, tearing the ligaments that connect the three bones forming that joint. This is often caused by running on uneven surfaces, playing sports that require jumping or changing directions suddenly, or by literally getting off on the wrong foot.
Improving your reflexes, balance, and coordination can help prevent this injury. Activities like yoga, dancing, or other exercises that improve your body coordination will definitely help. Talk to your pain management doctors in New York and to your personal trainer if you begin to feel pain on your foot.
Everybody has an Achilles heel, and for runners and athletes, it’s the Achilles tendon at the heel of the foot. When this becomes inflamed, it’ll be hard for you to move or put weight on that foot.
Training errors are the usual suspects when it comes to this injury. Too much training, suddenly increasing mileage, or too much workout strains this tendon. It’s then best to take things slowly.
Whatever your fitness goals are, injury surely isn’t one of them. The next time you put on your uniform or hit the gym, be sure to have the proper form and training.
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Published on February 21st, 2014 | by Rick Livingston
A low reimbursement rate from the dental insurance billing affects your capacity to provide for your patients’ needs. It can take a while before you can afford a specific type of equipment, for instance. When this happens, it’s time to negotiate for a higher reimbursement rate so you can have enough income to support your clinic and staff.
In Utah, the same problem plagues the dentists. The application of the dental fee program has flaws, as there’s no fixed amount provided for the dentists. Some might receive reimbursements of up to 15% of their usual fees, but others generally receive only 40 to 50%. Such disparity causes problems in obtaining proper pay from Medicaid and private insurance companies.
Medicaid Privatization: An Aggravating Factor
Medicaid, the primary insurance program from the government, has privatized its dental problem, which became effective September of last year. Jason Horgesheimer, president of the Utah Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, disagreed against this project. He has argued that privatization can further decrease the benefits patients receive, especially children from poor families who need dental care.
This can affect your practice if it’s part of the Medicaid program. You might have to think about dropping out and maintain membership with your current Preferred Provider Organization (PPO). This will make it necessary to talk terms to increase reimbursement rates with your provider.
Negotiating for Fairer Reimbursements
Consult an agency that has experience in transacting with different insurance companies to help you negotiate. Their experience will come in handy, as you look for a deal that will let you support your clinic’s needs satisfactorily. Specialists will study the processes in your practice to determine the amount it requires to maintain acceptable facilities and obtain acceptable rates.
A Continuous Drive for Improvement
Once you achieve higher rates, this won’t be the end of the negotiation. You’ll have to review them every year to determine if they’re enough for your clinic’s growing needs. Check out how you can ask for better benefits from knowledgeable resources.
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Published on February 20th, 2014 | by Lillian Johnson
A nice-looking office doesn’t just create a good impression. It also preserves the brand image you’re striving to maintain. It all starts with the design of the office, which must meet the functional needs of its employees and operations.
Coming up with suitable a design starts with being in touch with the company culture. What layouts will inspire creativity and promote comfort among your staff? Prioritising this will help you come up with ideas for renovating working spaces.
Open Spaces or Cubicles
Some people thrive in wide open spaces where they’d be able to interact with their teammates, while others like a quiet environment. Taking these needs into account is integral to planning a master design, so you can create a cosy work environment. Take note of various suggestions from professionals from The Caretakers, or look at layouts from design magazines, such as OnOffice and Dezeen. The examples can spark ideas on how to improve the look of your workplace.
Go Traditional or Ultra-Modern
The four corners of your office might do well for now, but there’s something attractive with the way Google, Amazon, and other big companies decorate their spaces. Google Headquarters in Australia, for instance, has a variety of features where everybody can both work and feel at home. Get to know which designs can increase morale and productivity. You can change the furniture or apply a new paint on the walls, for starters.
Add or Maintain Facilities
Some offices have sleeping quarters, a television in the pantry, a gaming centre, and an in-house clinic. This might seem excessive, but such additions can contribute to an increase of wellbeing. Other than that, more relaxation time can spark creativity, especially for offices in a fast-paced environment. Looking at how famous offices decorated their own spaces will also help you make your company a great place to be in terms of facilities.
Planning the Renovation
Consult with skilled designers on how your office would undergo commercial renovation to figure out the budget. Asking about layouts that will suit the existing spaces can keep expenses reasonable. This, of course, will depend on the look you want to achieve.
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