Author Archives: Anthony Greco

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How to get your car ready for spring

Spring is a great time to press the reset button and clean things up. Nature does it, homeowners do it, and so should car owners. From changing tires to cleaning the undercarriage, here’s how to get your car ready for spring.

Change your winter tires back to your all-season tires

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Ah the Ontario winter. So generous it is that it sometimes continues to give its frozen gifts well into spring. Just when think you’re safe to change your tires, Ontario gets hit with an April blizzard. If you want to play it safe, wait until you get a few days in a row at 10 degrees Celsius or higher — usually mid-March or later —  before you make the switch.

Check your tire pressure

Once you get your all-season tires back on, it’s time to check their pressure as compared to the recommended pressure settings in your manual. If you don’t own one already, buy a tire gauge – we recommend a digital gauge for greater accuracy – and make sure your tires are ready to take on snow-free roadways.

Have your dealership check your tire alignment

Winter driving can take a toll on your alignment since that’s the worst time of year for overall road conditions. If there’s a statistic for “average potholes driven over per month”, the winter months would surely be in the lead. If you haven’t had your tires rotated in a while, this might be a good time to do it.

Thoroughly clean your car inside and out

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Simple, right? Maybe, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. If you live in areas where roadways get salted, it’s imperative that you take your car through a car wash that features undercarriage cleaning so you can protect it from rust damage. That takes care of the exterior, and then you can shake out your floor mats, vacuum out the seats and carpet, and remove any garbage or clutter. If you really take pride in your car, consider taking it to a professional detailer so you can truly get it looking and smelling like new again.

Don’t forget about the small stuff

You don’t want to learn the hard way, during that first spring rain shower, that your wipers are shot, so make sure to address the small stuff. What state are the floor mats in? Should you order some new ones? Or how about the mud flaps?

Following these spring-specific tips and making sure you continue to follow your manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule for oil changes, air filters, cooling system, etc. will ensure you’re as ready as you can be for the spring driving season.

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6 Things You Didn’t Know About Acura

That logo isn’t an “A” or an “H”…

Mind. Blown.

Acura has enjoyed tremendous success on the luxury market, but compared to much of the competition, it’s relatively young. Let’s explore the history of the intriguing and innovative Japanese brand.

Here are 6 things you may not have known about the Japanese automaker.

The word “Acura” doesn’t mean anything in Japanese.

Unlike Honda, which gets its name from its founder Soichiro Honda, Acura doesn’t have a deeper definition in Japanese. Acura is a slight modification of the Latin word for “done with precision.” This theme is echoed in the brand slogan: Precision Crafted Performance.

Acura was the first Japanese luxury automotive brand to arrive in North America.

Acura was launched in 1986 in Canada and the US, making it the first Japanese luxury automaker to stake a claim on the crucial market. The early success of the Integra and Legend spurred the competition along and soon Toyota and Nissan both arrived on the scene with their luxury offshoots. Acura, however, was the first.

That logo isn’t an “A” or an “H”

The Acura logo sticks to the theme of precision or accuracy with a clever logo that some interpret as a capital A or H. The truth: it’s actually an outside caliper, a precision tool used to measure thickness.

Look familiar?

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Outside Calipers, Via Wikipedia.

Acura has an impressive motorsport pedigree.

Testing new technologies in a racing environment is a great way to ensure their reliability and help spread awareness for the brand’s credibility. If a car can drive at full throttle on a racetrack for 24 hours straight, it will certainly last much longer in the hands of customers. Acura gets this.

Since the brand’s inception, they have been involved in SCCA and IMSA GT Championship, two prominent series in the US. They won the SCCA World Championship in 1997 using the NSX and Integra, proving the cars’ performance chops. In the 2000s, the brand even developed its own LMP1 car, which raced admirably in the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans. More recently, an ILX raced in the 25 Hours of Thunderhill, won in its class, and came in 8th place overall.

And the NSX was the world’s first supercar you could use daily.

The first car to be classified as a supercar was the Lamborghini Miura, in 1966. From that point, there have been many supercars, and most of them Italian. While they were all undoubtedly very fast, beautiful and exotic, you couldn’t really use them as a daily-driver. They had poor reliability, running costs were exorbitant and they weren’t practical.

And then in 1990, the Acura NSX arrived.

Just like the Italian stallions, it was mid-engined and aerodynamic. It could reach speeds greater than 300 km per hour and rev to 8,300 rpm. However, unlike its Italian competitors, it was reliable, easy to use, had good visibility and didn’t require a second mortgage to maintain.

The NSX ushered in a new era in the supercar world, forcing the industry to rethink their way of building cars.

The Policaro Group ran the first Acura dealership in the country!

As part of Policaro Group, Policaro Acura is proud to have been a part of Acura’s history since day one! In 1987, following years of working with the Honda brand, the Policaro Group’s founding members were awarded the first Acura dealership in Canada. Learn more about the Policaro Group’s fascinating family story here.

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7 entertaining things to do in Brampton this winter

Brampton isn’t exactly a “hidden gem.” With over half a million residents and millions of neighbours in the GTA, it’s definitely on most Ontarian’s radar. Still, it remains something of an underrated city…which, for its residents, is pretty great!

Suburban though it may be, Brampton doesn’t lack for fun outing options, even when the province freezes solid. From skating to skiing to shooting Nerf arrows at your besties (yup, you can do that), here’s how to have fun in Brampton in the wintertime.

Hit the slopes Caledon Ski Club.

Head to the local ski club for some afternoon downhill mountain sports, and then explore the latest automotive offering from the Policaro Automotive family. Policaro Automotive has partnered with the Caledon Ski Club to bring its performance brand to life through a series of winter events including test drives of the latest models from Northwest Lexus, Policaro BMW and Porsche Centre Oakville, a high-performance ski-service centre, and scavenger hunts for those still too young to get behind the wheel. For more information, call the Caledon Ski Club at 519-927-5221 ext. 225.

 Get some air time at Aerosports Trampoline Park.

From a toddler zone to ultimate dodgeball to open bouncing, the 18,000-square-foot trampoline park at Aerosports has jumping options for the whole family. It’s the perfect spot to host a birthday party or spend any old super-cold Sunday afternoon.

 

Sharpen the blades and head to the Chinguacousy Park​ skating ribbon.

Brampton’s latest ice worthy of your blades? The all-new skating canal at Chinguacousy Park​. The trail is more than 2,000-square-metres of ice surface, which means 500 skaters can be gliding along at once, and on certain days, local food trucks will ensure you stay fueled. Don’t have skates? You can rent a pair Thursday through Sunday during operational hours.  

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 Cheer on the Brampton Beast!

There’s no need to make the trek into Toronto to watch the Leafs when you can catch a Brampton Beast game closer to home. The local ECHL team puts on a powerful show and tickets for most home games can be easily found online.

Get silly tubing at Mount Chinguacousy.

While Mount Chinguacousy offers skiing and snowboarding, the real fun is had over on the tubing terrain. Prices vary depending on use, but $13.35 will get you six slides or two hours in the park. If you have extra littles, note that the minimum height requirement to ride is 42-inches.  

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Fire Nerf arrows at your kids at Battle Archery.

Sometimes the only way to sap your kids’ seemingly endless energy is to let them run it out. At Battle Archery, an indoor nerf gun playing field, they run and jump and scream all while shooting each other and other players with nerf bullets. You can play, too. Or you can sit it out and enjoy a moment of peace from the sidelines.

Wage epic medieval warfare at Battle Archery! #nerf #battlearchery #larp www.battlearchery.com

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Feel the artistic inspiration at the Peel Art Gallery.

For indoorsy folk, head over to the Peel Art Gallery Museum and Archives (PAMA) and experience a variety of creative exhibitions, including one of the latest, Peel Through the Photographers’ Lens. Don’t miss the Family Fun Day each Saturday and Sunday at 1pm for various organized activities.  

2018 Acura MDX

5 reasons the Acura MDX is the ideal SUV

The Acura MDX has come a long way since it launched in 2000. Originally based on the Honda Pilot, this large SUV surprised everyone that was fortunate enough to test-drive it. It was fast, comfortable and came with standard equipment that many of its competitors offered only as options or didn’t offer at all.

The MDX is now a mainstay in its segment, competing admirably against vehicles with a much heftier price tag. There are many reasons why you might want to consider an Acura MDX as your next vehicle. Here are five.

1: Style

The second-generation SUV unveiled in 2013 was attractive, but last year’s update gave it an even more modern fascia and overall commanding presence. The Diamond Pentagon grille complements the Jewel Eye LED headlights while 18-inch wheels (with available 20”) and the chrome-outlined exhaust add a sporty touch.

 

2: Power

If your expanding family forced you to trade in your sports car in favour of a large SUV, you might lament the lack of power and portly handling that is typical of this segment. But have you driven the MDX? Its direct-injected 3.5-litre V6 makes 290 horsepower, and its 9-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission shifts much faster than a conventional automatic setup (which you can control via a pair of paddles behind the steering). And an advanced SH-AWD setup maximizes grip regardless of conditions. Throw a few curves at the MDX, and you might forget that you’re in an SUV.

3:  On-board technologies

Acura has a reputation of bringing advanced technologies to the masses, and the 2018 MDX is a great example of this. The front infotainment system combines all of the vehicle’s important functions like multi-zone automatic climate control, sound system, GPS navigation, Android Auto/Apple CarPlay, etc. into one convenient screen. With the Elite package passengers in back get a wide screen (headphones included) that can receive images from two different sources. The result: nobody argues about what to watch. IMG_9797

4: Safety

By choosing the MDX, you are putting yours and your passengers’ well-being into Acura’s hands, and this is something they take VERY seriously. The MDX comes with AcuraWatch, their most advanced suite of safety technologies. Relying on a network of two cameras and six sensors, AcuraWatch detects and notifies the driver to potential hazards on the road, and can even adjust the vehicle for you to avoid or mitigate certain threats. Techs like adaptive cruise control, surround camera view and blind-spot monitoring will make you aware of everything that’s going on around your vehicle. And should the worst happen, the MDX’s energy-dissipating chassis and airbags will protect you and your loved ones.  

The MDX in Brampton. A perfect fit. #acura #acuraMDX #policaroacura #brampton

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5: Comfort

The MDX’s interior has been engineered to be a very comfortable place to be. The SUV comes standard with three rows of seats (you can choose to have your MDX in a six-passenger setup, replacing the second row of seats with captain chairs), which are all covered in leather. Heated seats are standard, while the second row’s bench can be heated if you want it to. The steering wheel is also heated, a delight in our cold climate. Finally, if you go for the Elite trim, you will be treated to rear sunshades (also available with the Tech package), ventilated front seats and genuine wood trims, among other things.

Interested in in driving a 2018 MDX? Contact us!

 

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Full-service gas stations in the Toronto area

When winter has you feeling like you can’t even, don’t even…pump your own gas, that is.

If there is ever a time to take advantage of full-service gas stations it is now. Sure, you pay a little more, but you do it from the warm comfort of the driver’s seat. Fair trade, right?

This winter, keep you toes and fingers dry and warm and fill up at one of these full-service gas stations in the Toronto area.

I didn’t know full-service still existed! #lifeinsales #fullservicegasstation

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Downtown Toronto

Corktown Esso

Shell

North York

XTR

Etobicoke

Petro-Canada

Midtown Toronto

Esso

Missisauga

Esso

Brampton

Speedy Gas

Oakville

Maple Grove Esso

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How to use the Acura Tire Replacement and Inflator Kit

Six steps to an inflated tire.

If you’ve landed on this post because one of your Acura’s tires just suffered some damage, don’t worry, we’re going to get through this together. And the good news is that with the Tire Replacement and Inflator Kit, you probably won’t need to labour over a jack and tire iron, wrenching and sweating on the side of the road to take off the flat and put on the spare. The Tire Replacement and Inflator Kit can repair a puncture to the tread of the tire up to the size of a large nail, so as long as the damage wasn’t done to the sides of the tire, there’s a good chance you’ll be on your way to fixing your tire just as soon as you’re done watching this How-to video:

Step 1: Open the kit and read the instructions.

Step 2: Attach sealant hose to valve stem and tighten it.

Step 3: Connect the power cable to the power outlet inside the car.

Step 4: Start the car engine.

Step 5: Turn the dial to the “Sealant” position and push the kit power button. It will now start inflation.

Step 6: Keep your eye on the pressure gauge and inflate the tire to the pressure written on the pressure gauge found on the driver’s side door jam label.

And that’s it! Six steps to an inflated tire. Keep in mind that this is a temporary fix and your speed should be limited to less than 80 kph. It’s also wise to consult your driver’s manual to see your vehicle’s restrictions following tire repairs.

If your tire hasn’t taken any damage, but just needs a bit of air, the kit can also be used like a standard air pump by selecting the “Air” position on the dial.

Because the sealant in the kit can only be used once, be sure to replace your Tire Replacement and Inflator Kit at an Acura parts department, or just give us a call.

 

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Why your all-season tires won’t cut it in a Canadian winter

The descriptor “all-season” can be a little misleading when it comes to tires, especially if you live in Canada or somewhere that gets a comparably chilly winter. The truth is, all those seasons they’re talking about don’t include a proper snow-and-ice winter.

It’s a matter of simple science, and it has nothing to do with tread. When temperatures dip below 7 degrees C (44 F), the rubber compound in all-season tires becomes much harder, resulting in less traction with the road. Your all-seasons may look pristine, with all sorts bumps and grooves on the tread, but when the thermometer dips, they’ll grow as hard as a hockey puck…and we all know how that performs on ice.

2018 Acura MDX

Even all-wheel-drive vehicles such as the Acura MDX using all-season tires are susceptible to traction loss—the wheels working in concert does aid in getting the vehicle moving from stop, but when it comes time to brake or turn on a patch of snow or ice, the transmission is little help.

Winter tires, on the other hand, are specifically designed to maintain softness in cold temperatures. This gives them the ability to keep contact with the road and provide more braking, accelerating and maneuvering power for your vehicle.

Though we shouldn’t really need another reason, safety isn’t the only argument for winter tires. There’s also the performance factor. Because a vehicle with proper winter tires will accelerate, stop and corner more effectively than a vehicle with all-seasons, it’s quicker in every sense of the word.

 

So when winter throws the inevitable curve ball your way in the form of an icy incline, a three-car-pile up straight ahead, or a just a whole lot of slush and pedestrians this season, ditch the all-seasons and be prepared with a proper set of winter tires.

If you’re in the GTA, we can help with all your tire needs. Drop us a line!

2018 Acura RLX

2018 Acura RLX: The Queen’s New Nose

During the Monterey Car Week, Acura unveiled the new style of its RLX flagship sedan. The big four-door car didn’t drastically change, but like a good wine, it only got better with age. Let’s go through its most obvious changes and less obvious modifications.

Styling:

The first thing you’ll notice when looking at the new RLX is the changes made to the front end. The hood is all-new, as is the recognizable front grille. Gone is the chrome “beak” that had become the signature of Acura in the last few years—in its place is a sleek-looking pentagon grille. The rest of the car’s front end is also new. For example, check out the stylish chrome lines circling the fog lights, or the new LED fog lights themselves.

The RLX has also been thoroughly modified at the rear: new LED taillights give the car a more modern look, while the black lower diffuser anchors a sportier appearance.

2018 Acura RLX

Drivetrain:

There are also some changes under the hood. The powerful-yet-economical 3.5-litre V6 is back, still delivering 310 horsepower. However, sitting underneath it is an all-new 10-speed automatic gearbox. While it has been seen in the Honda Odyssey, Pilot and Ridgeline, this is the first time this unit is used in an Acura product.

The rest of the car’s mechanical bits are unchanged—Acura’s Precision All-Wheel Steering still comes standard, as does the FWD layout. Acura hasn’t yet published the fuel economy ratings for the 2018 RLX, but we can only assume that the 10-speed transmission will only improve them.

 

Interior:

The most notable change inside the 2018 RLX is the new front seats, which we look forward to sitting in. Throughout the cockpit, various surfaces are now richer than they were on the outgoing model, and there’s even an Espresso interior colour now on option. The most notable piece of technology that has been added to the already impressive list of features proposed on the RLX is the Traffic Jam Assist. This clever tech will automatically follow the car in front of you when you’re stuck in gridlock, helping those who have to go through congested city centers every day.

2018 Acura RLX

The 2018 Acura RLX is set to arrive in November. When it lands in dealerships, we will finally be able to experience just how far the brand’s high-tech limousine has come. Stay tuned!

best farms to visit in the GTA

The best farms to visit in the GTA

Image via Springridge Farm. 

Autumn in Ontario is an exciting time. Those last-ditch cottage weekends, the back-to-school scramble, the glorious natural showing that is the foliage changing and, of course, the harvest.

OK, so most of us aren’t that involved in the harvest these days, but that’s not to say we couldn’t be. In fact, the GTA has some amazing farms that offer tours, events and all sorts of family fun in the fall. Here are some of the best farms to visit in the GTA.

Andrews Scenic Acres

These two-generation Ontario farmers offer events to bring people together like live music and get-togethers on the weekends, but it’s the you-pick that’s really worth the trip. Their fall you-pick harvests include raspberries, apples, pears, squash, pumpkin and more–get out and get your fingers sticky.

Stop by the farm to check out our weekend festivities such as pony rides and live music!

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Riverdale

Riverdale is a little rural oasis and historic working farm nestled in Cabbagetown and managed by Toronto Parks. Head there on the weekend of Sept 10-11 for the corn roast, contests and fun of the annual Fall Festival.

Day 222 • Hanging out with our beautiful niece in Toronto today! #photoaday2017 #summer #family #countryinthecity A post shared by Beverley Anne (@beverley.bunker) on

Brooks Farms

There’s so much more to do than farm at this Mount Albert operation that has been family-owned since 1875. During their annual Fall Fun Festival (every weekend from Sept 9 to Nov 5, including holidays), you and the fam can experience the corn maze, farm market, train rides, duck races, zip lines and more. Be warned: the kids will not want to leave.

 

Springridge Farm

Springridge Farm in Milton is as much a destination for the food as it is for the good times. Their on-site bakery, weekend BBQ and seasonal pies are each worth the trip. Their Harvest Festival runs weekends from Sept 23 to Oct 29.

Firing up the grill this weekend? We got you covered! What’s your favourite sauce from the farm? A post shared by Springridge Farm (@springridgefarm) on

Applewood Farm Winery

Stouffville knows how to farm, and, lately, they’ve been learning about fruit wine, too. That’s right, wine. So, while the kids are tearing around the straw bale mountain or riding on the tractor wagon, you can shop for some of their unique fruit wines.

Chudleighs

Chudleighs’ orchards are as lively as ever in fall. Explore them with the family, pick some apples, grab a lunch at the farm kitchen or pantry and eat it in the picnic area. Pure autumnal bliss.

We think it’s good to get a little lost sometimes. Wave your hands in the air if you love losing your way in our hay maze.

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Whittamores Farm

If your objective is to exhaust your children so they sleep all the way home and right through the night, you can’t go wrong with Markham’s Whittamores Farm, which has a 2-storey tree fort, corn maze and farm bouncer. Pumpkinland also looks pretty legit–know how heavy those things are?!

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How to detail your car like a pro

Some people insist on doing it all themselves. You know the type. Maybe you are the type. If there’s a way to DIY the job, that’s what they’re doing. Sometimes they succeed, sometimes they fail, but they’re always hands-on.

Now, our trained technicians would be more than happy to detail your Acura for you down at the dealership, but we also fully encourage the DIY spirit. And when it comes to washing your car, the truth is that it can actually be pretty enjoyable and not all that difficult if you’ve got the know how and the right tools.

From the gear you need, to what to clean with what and how, here’s how to detail your own car so it’ll shine like it was meant to.

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Gear Up

Putting together a detailing kit of your own with some of the essentials. Get yourself a couple of buckets, a microfiber pad, several clean cloths, wash-mitt, an ultra-soft chamois, some canned air and Q-tips, and some multi-glass cleaner, auto-glass cleaner, vehicle shampoo, leather conditioner, engine degreaser and tire dressing, as well as instructions on how to use each. You can also buy pre-packaged kits, but just make sure they’re right for your Acura.

Inside Out

Don’t track inside detritus onto a clean exterior of your car–start inside and work your way out.

- Empty out everything! All the change in the center console. All the floor mats! All the Kleenex boxes! Anything that isn’t bolted down.

- Next, vacuum all the surfaces including the seat, carpets, under the seat by moving them forward and backwards to access as much area as possible, and inside the trunk. When cleaning the dash or any surface that may scratch, make sure to use the appropriate soft vacuum attachment.

- Use canned air or Q-tips to remove any stuck materials from hard-to-reach areas such as vents and grills.

- Wipe the doors, dash, console, center console, making sure to use the appropriate cleaner for each surface, or just a damp chamois or cloth. Do not use tire or vinyl shine products on the dash as it can cause glare that may affect your vision, and may leave a film on the interior of the front windshield.

- When cleaning the windows, ensure you use an appropriate window cleaner and two cloths; one to spread the cleaner around and remove the dirt, and the second to dry it.

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Wheels

With the inside spick and span, head outside and tackle the wheels.

For the least struggle, make sure you use a designated wheel cleaner solution and allow it a few moments to do work on the surface.

- Use a stiff brush or pressure hose to dislodge any gunk.

- Make sure the tires shine bright by applying some tire dressing after they’re clean, rinsed and dry.

 

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Then the Fun Part!

Go ahead and get wet!

- Park in the shade, especially if you’re going to wax.

- Rinse the vehicle thoroughly to ensure you remove as much dirt as possible before washing. Use a bucket of warm soapy water and a clean wash mitt to wipe the car’s exterior from top to bottom.

- Make sure to wash the bottom last as there is more dirt lower on the vehicle which you don’t want to drag around and scratch the paint. If there is heavy dirt on the vehicle, rinse your wash mitt frequently during use.

- Have a separate bucket of clean water to wash particles out of the rags and/or mitt as you clean.

- Try to wash, rinse and dry section by section to avoid soapy water drying on the surface.

- Dry with microfiber towel or chamois.

- If you’re going to wax, this is when to do it.

- With a separate cloth and either warm water with a mild dilution of soap or a multi-purpose cleaner, wipe inside the door jambs, doors frames, trunk channels and inside the fuel door area.

Pop the Hood

Didn’t your mother teach you never to cut corners? In the interest of being thorough, be sure to pop the hood and clean in the engine bay.

- Depending on how much build-up there is on the hardware, some engine degreaser may be in order. Apply and allow to work.

- Wash with a hose, making sure not to saturate areas with electrical components as it could cause electrical problems.

- Use a cloth to wipe the engine covers and inside the hood channels.

- Apply approved vinyl/plastic dressing to the engine covers if preferred.

 Get Perspective

With the scrubbing done but before you put your supplies away, check your work.

- You can also take the opportunity to cut down on interior clutter by limiting and re-organizing the items you put back in.

Show It Off

Now that your Acura is glistening like new, time to show it off. Take a victory lap while you plan your next DIY project.

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