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At BA Auto Care, setting up and executing an effective preventive maintenance program tailored to the specific needs of your vehicle is one of the most important things we do for you.  Caring for your cooling system and brakes is essential.  Here is what we do:

Coolant Exchange

We only flush or exchange the coolant if cooling system in good condition.  If the system turns out to be very rusty, we stop and report. We also check to make sure that hoses, water pump and radiator are in also in good condition.

Once we get the green light on coolant system conditions, the  “flush fluid” is added the flush machine is connected, the engine is run until hot with heater on full with the cleaner circulating. New antifreeze is then injected into the system pushing out all the dirty fluid.  If needed, we clean the expansion tank and then top fluids off to the correct level.  We then test the entire cooling system, checking that  the cooling fan is cycling. Finally, the system is checked for leaks, your car is road tested and the fluid levels are rechecked.

Brake Inspection

Many car owners think that Inspecting the brakes is just a quick check of brake pad thickness.  When done properly, a brake inspection requires much more.  Here is what the BA Auto Care techs do during a brake inspection:

  • Road test vehicle, check for pull, vibration, or dragging to one side.
  • Check brakes for sinking and check performance of emergency brake.
  • Check brake fluid level and condition of master cylinder, hoses and lines.
  • Check brake booster, hoses and lines. Remove wheels, inspect front brake pads, check condition of rotors (rust, hotspots, scoring, etc.) and record thickness of pads.
  • Check for uneven wear. Check condition of brake calipers (slide boots, piston boots, caliper slides, etc.)
  • Check rear brakes, check emergency brake operation, record thickness of shoes or pads, check condition of rotors or drums, check wheel cylinders or caliper and hardware.
  • If vehicle needs new brakes, record thickness of rotors or drums, check that bleed fittings are free.
  • Check antilock brake system performance by testing on gravel or wet road. Inspect condition of visible components (cable, lines, controllers, etc.)
  • Use this as a basic check before performing ABS test.
  • Final road test

Brake Flush

  • Check to ensure that all bleed fittings are free and allow fluid to flow
  • Report if seized or very rusty.
  • Attach brake bleeding machine.
  • Flush system at all four points until fluid flows through clean.
  • Tighten all bleed fittings and pressure test for leaks.
  • Road test.
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As a conscientious car owner who wants to keep your vehicle serviced and running smoothly, the following may have happened to you:

You drive into your local quick lube for an oil change.  The service manager comes out with a long list of other services he says your car needs.  These include a power steering flush, fuel injection flush, coolant flush and a myriad of flushes you’ve never heard of before.  The manager acts concerned and pushes for the work to be done on your car while you’re in for your oil change.  What should you do?

For many car owners, this is a confusing situation.  However, flushing all the bad stuff out of your car sounds reasonable.  After all, what can be the harm?  It’s all good, right?

Actually, the opposite could be true.  Unless the work is really needed and then performed to manufacturer’s specifications by a certified auto technician, you could be damaging your vehicle and may even void your warranty.

One of the major benefits of using a full service auto repair shop like BA Auto Repair is our knowledge of what services your car needs, when to perform these services, and the skills to meet or exceed your car manufacturer’s specifications when performing the services.

At BA Auto Care, we go by the book – a comprehensive book of over 200 service and maintenance items with detailed instructions on how to get them all done right. This comprehensive Job Description Guide represents our decades of experience servicing and repairing all makes and models of vehicles.
Knowing what a vehicle needs is complex and to give our customers accurate recommendations we rely on many factors.

Here are ten important things for you to consider before you approve a service on your vehicle:

  1. The observations of a certified auto technician
  2.  Downloaded data from your vehicle’s onboard computers
  3. Your vehicle’s service history
  4. Type of driving you do (city or highway)
  5. Manufacturer’s recommendations
  6. Average miles driven in a year
  7. Current service bulletin updates
  8. Known issues with your vehicle (pattern failures)
  9. Car fax information
  10. Setting Service Priorities: Safety • Reliability • Predictive • Prevention

In number 10, you may be wondering why preventive maintenance is listed in fourth place.  This is because preventive maintenance can and should be performed on a set timetable.  At BA Auto, we set up preventive maintenance plans for most of our customers.  Safety is listed first because these are items that must be done as soon as possible.

It is very frustrating for our service writers when a new customer comes in for a needed safety repair, only to find that their funds are restricted because they have spent their car allowance on prevention items that could have waited.

At BA Auto Care, we have a proven system of evaluating vehicles that allows us to recommend a “Preventive Maintenance Plan” that is right for your car. This is why we say that we are  "Looking out for you and your car."

Here are four common service and repair items we perform following a Preventive Maintenance Service that includes an oil and filter change.

  1. Replace engine air filter element, clean air filter housing.
    This filter is replaced every 15,000 miles depending on your car’s operating conditions. Dusty conditions can block the air filter and increase miles per gallon. The service only takes from 5-10 minutes up to 30 minutes on some models. A good quality air filter element costs around $20 but can cost up to $50. Some manufacturers installed air filters that last 50,000 miles, and these are more expensive.
  2. Replace cabin filter.
    This filter cleans the air coming into the interior of the vehicle. This filter is replaced every 15,000 miles depending on your operating conditions. Also, if you have pets in the car, the fur can block and filter and require more frequent replacement. A good quality cabin filter element costs around $20 but can cost up to $50. There special filters that can be installed that help with allergies and filter out pollen. It can take from 10 -30 minutes to replace the filter and clean the air intake duct.
  3. Engine Coolant replacement.
    This Service is performed every 3-5 years depending on type of fluid. It’s only performed on a cooling system that’s in good condition.  If your cooling system is rusty and in poor condition, this service could be a waste of money or could even cause other problems. In addition, our car’s hoses, water pump and radiator should also be in good condition for this service to be effective. The process includes adding flush fluid and hooking up your vehicle to a flush machine, run until hot with heater operating. The  expansion tank is cleaned and topped up to correct level. Testing the  system after the service is performed is vital and should include checking to make sure that the cooling fan is cycling, checking for leaks, followed by road testing and a final level check. The cost for this service varies by vehicle and takes an average of one hour of labor plus the cost of flush fluid and anti-freeze. It’s critical that the fluid is changed before it loses its protectiveness. 
  4. Automatic Transmission fluid and filter changes.
    This service requires the removal of the transmission pan and the installation of a new gasket.  If any metal or band material is found in the transmission it should be reported because it could be a sign of a serious transmission problem. This service also includes changing the transmission fluid. On some vehicles, the only option is to replace the transmission fluid. Replacing the fluid at regular intervals before it breaks down and becomes dirty is critical for a long lasting transmission. The cost of the fluid change can be under $100 but a full service with the filter change starts around $300.  This service is always a good investment because it can save you the thousands of dollars it cost to replace a transmission.

In my next blog, I’m going to cover the next four common services we perform on vehicles:  power steering flush, spark plug replacement, front and rear differential oil changes. 

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As consumers, Americans are getting accustomed to not owning anything anymore.  All those software programs we used to purchase are now annual or monthly subscriptions.  Even our music library isn’t really ours anymore.  We’re paying a monthly subscription to stream from one of the clouds.

Volvo Jumps On “Subscription” Bandwagon
Recently, the automotive industry jumped on the subscription bandwagon with the introduction of Volvo’s Car Care Subscription.  Call it the Leasing Plan With Benefits.  For a monthly subscription fee of around $775, you can drive a new Volvo, like the 2019 Volvo S60.  The plan includes Insurance, Service and Maintenance, Repairs, Tires, Pickup and delivery,  Taxes and Tires. No deposit is required at signing, and Volvo says “peace of mind” is the main benefit.  Volvo appears to be vigorously pushing this subscription idea.  In fact, you won’t be able to purchase the new all electric XC40.   It will be available by lease or subscription only.

As the owner of an all-electric car, I found it rather ironic that the first vehicle from Volvo that you can’t  buy is an electric one. With the electric cars becoming more affordable and with generous tax credits from the State and Federal governments, why would someone want to subscribe to an electric car and lose these benefits.

We’re Keeping Our Cars Longer
For the 27 percent of car drivers who prefer leasing, rather than ownership, this may sound like a great deal.  However, for the rest of us, who prefer to own a car and look forward to not having a monthly car payment, it just sounds like another one of those fantasy financing plans that favor the car dealers.  In fact,  the latest research shows that people are keeping their cars longer (the age of the average vehicle on the road is a record 11.6 years).

Of course, this makes our job at BA Auto Care even more important.  We’ve got to keep those “road warriors” running efficiently.  We repair all makes and models, foreign and American, and love to work on older cars as well as new cars. No age discrimination here.

We’re Here To Steer You In The Right Direction

To own or not to own?  That is the question plaguing the American consumer today.  We love our smart phones but are not enchanted with the high cost of keeping up with the latest technology.  We love the freedom of the road provided by our automobiles but are concerned about the cost of upkeep and the need to own a car with the most advanced technology.

At BA Auto Care, we are here to help, not just with repairs but with advice on how to sort through the car manufacturer maze of models and advancing technology.  If you are looking to purchase a new car and need some expert advice about which make and model fits your driving lifestyle, please talk to us.  We’ll try to steer you in the right direction.

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Keeping our customer’s cars in peak operating condition is one of our primary missions at BA Auto Care.  For current and long time customers, it’s a matter of keeping detailed records, understanding the maintenance history of their vehicle and keeping abreast of all the manufacturer and model information.  We take pride in our ability to provide our customers with an affordable, personalized preventive maintenance program.

Proper Preventive Maintenance Keeps Your Car In Top Running Condition
For new customers, the path to preventive maintenance is a little more challenging.  We need to collect enough data on their vehicle to establish a baseline so we can accurately determine which systems in their car need service, and on what schedule.  That’s where our “New Customer and Care Questions Form” comes in.  By collecting all the important information about a new customer’s vehicle when they come into BA Auto Care for the first time, we can set them on an individualized preventive maintenance schedule that will keep their car running properly for years.  Equally as important is the fact that armed with this information our certified technicians will be preforming only the services that are needed, saving our customers money.

Getting Your Vehicle’s Driving History
Sometimes filling out this form can meet resistance from new customers.  After all, who wants to fill out another form.  My daughter Sandi and I like to tell customers its like going to a new doctor or specialist and being required to fill out your medical history.  No one looks forward to doing this but understands that getting the right diagnosis and treatment can depend on giving your medical specialist the right background information on your condition.  It works the same way with your car.  We can’t provide your car with the best service unless we can get baseline information on all its systems, such as  Oil filter, Coolant, Transmission, Transaxle, Front differential, Rear differential, Transfer Case Power steering, Fuel filter, Air filter, Cabin filter, Spark plugs, Timing belt, Battery, and Brake fluid).

A Comprehensive Checkup and Complete Computer Scan
That’s why we always recommend a comprehensive checkup of each new vehicle we see, giving all these systems a complete computer scan. This is  important so that we can recommend only the services your vehicle needs rather than blindly follow the manufacturers check list which might not reflect the condition of your vehicle and the way you use it. When a baseline check is incorporated into the recommended services it is economic way to get the information you need. This leads to a safe and reliable vehicle.

And in case you’re concerned about filling out a lengthy questionnaire, we keep it simple, asking the fewest number of questions to get the most information.

Today’s vehicle marketplace is a complex smorgasbord of manufacturers, models, engine types, transmissions, brake systems and so forth.  Here at BA Auto Care, one of our most important jobs is to keep on top of all the new information that auto manufacturers generate each day and then use that knowledge to give our customers the top tier service they’ve come to expect from us.

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As the holiday season approaches, I always start thinking about the importance of serving others in our community, especially neighbors and friends who are facing difficulties during a time when most of us are celebrating. Although Howard County has dozens of agencies ready to support families in need, accessing that support can be a daunting task. What we need is a “social safety blanket,” led by local government with the support of local churches, synagogues and non-profit groups that makes it easy for neighbors in need to access services.

 Pictured here are members of the Shouse Family who donated their old car to BA Auto Care.  We repaired the car and donated it to a former neighbor whose car broke down and could not be repaired.  Thank you to the Shouse Family for their generosity, and for helping us to pay it forward.

The importance of setting up the social safety blanket came up in two separate conversations I had recently: one with a long time BA Auto Care customer and the other with my daughter, Sandi. Our customer was telling me about the work his synagogue and local churches were doing to find shelter for the Howard County homeless during the cold weather. He lamented how easy it was for homeless families to fall through the social safety net and end up living in tents in the woods off Route 1.

My daughter Sandi recently helped her former neighbor get back on the road again after her car broke down and was beyond repair. We were able to provide Sandi’s neighbor with a car that was donated to us by another customer. We repaired the donated car, got it thorough Maryland State Inspections and into the hands of our neighbor in need. What my daughter did not know was that her former neighbor was also homeless and living in her car. In trying to get help, she was shuffled from one local agency to another with no coordination or cross communication. Without coordination and communication between agencies, little help was provided.

All this brings me back to my original point about the need for a coordinated, organized, accessible “social safety blanket” led by local government and supported by local synagogues, churches and charities.

When we think more about helping others this holiday season, let’s also focus on what to do to make a lasting difference. Some charities like “Health Care for the Homeless” take a holistic approach, finding accommodations and health care and then following up with the folks they help.

Recently I read about churches that are providing week long accommodations for the homeless. This approach is perfect for Columbia where many churches are in industrial parks and can provide accommodations during the week when their facilities are underutilized.

Our local government has already started to place some support agencies under one roof and implementing a “no wrong number” policy that allows folks in need to call any government number to access help.

It’s time to put our heads together to come up with sustainable ideas on how to implement a coordinated “social safety blanket” that provides shelter, food, warmth and health care to the needy quickly and efficiently.

With a new county executive in Calvin Ball and a brand new county council taking charge, the timing couldn’t be better. Let’s kick off the holiday season by pushing this initiative forward.

Here is how to contact county officials with your ideas:

County Executive: 410-313-2013

County Council: 410-313-2001

Howard County State Delegation: 410-841-3360

Here is a list of charities that provide more coordinated support:

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What You Need To Know

As automation in auto technology fast forwards and driver assistance systems quickly become the new normal in daily driving, understanding the basics of these systems becomes paramount.  It won’t be long before we start relying on these systems to keep us safe on the road.   2018 saw driver assistant systems filter down to all makes and models. Soon we will accept and trust these systems. 

Also on the technology horizon are more advanced systems that allow cars to communicate with each other and warn of unfavorable driving situations. As we see the number of traffic accidents go down and lives being saved we will become more comfortable with cars that drive themselves.

It is important to understand how this new technology in your car works because driver assistance systems differ from manufacturer to manufacturer. Your driver handbook and your auto care professional at BA Auto Care are your best advisors in getting to know how your system works. 

Making Sense of Sensors

Every driver assistance system relies on a series of sensors and cameras spread throughout your car.  They can only function correctly if they stay clean and unrestricted. A sensor can be negated very easily by a poorly placed window sticker, EZ Pass,  or even bad weather. In addition, knowing these systems could save you money on complex diagnostic work. Just consider these two all too common scenarios:

Driver Assisted Blocking of Sensors: In this first scenario, the driver has placed two different items on the inside of the windscreen, preventing two driver assistant systems from working properly. This usually shows up when we are performing predictive and preventive maintenance on a vehicle. At BA Auto Care, we always perform a complete baseline scan of the computer systems and check all the data. The faults showed up in the pending codes.  If the system continues to see issues a warning light comes on.

Bad Weather Blocks Sensors:  In this second scenario, a car was driven on the highway for half an hour in winter weather that included freezing rain. After arriving in the city, the Pedestrian Warning System started coming on at every stop. This happened in a multi-story parking lot!  After driving into a parking space, the system finally corrected itself. This occurred because the sensors had become covered with freezing rain.

  Types of Driver Assistance Systems

(A Glossary of Common Terms)

 As we advance towards self-driving vehicles (autonomous vehicles) there will be a lengthening list of  “driver assistance systems” that keep us safe and assist us in our driving.  Knowing the names of these systems and the protection they provide is important because all these systems can be negated by weather, dirt or placing items near the sensors. Following is a list of driver assistant systems and what they do:

Parking and Backing Assistant.  This system uses a series of cameras to show you where you, showing you views from the front, from the back, and from above the car. This system is sometimes called “Surround Vision”.

 Rear cross traffic alert (RCTA). When backing up, this system warns you when traffic is coming from either the left or right.  It displays an arrow showing the direction of oncoming traffic and beeps a warning.

 Forward Collision Alert (FAC). This system warns the driver when a front-end collision is likely by placing a warning on the screen and making a loud beep through the entertainment system. If ignored, some systems (IBA) will apply the brakes.

 Intelligent Brake Assist (IBA). The brakes will be automatically boosted and applied if necessary. (FAB)

 Collision Mitigating Braking System (CMBS). If the system feels you should be braking, it will alert you and then brake for you.

 Tailgating Alert. If you are following too close to the vehicle ahead, it will warn you.

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One of the major concerns we constantly hear about from our customers here at BA Auto Care is how to keep their newly licensed teen drivers safe on the road. Is there a car model or size that will ensure a safer driving experience for their son or daughter? Should the newest driver in their family drive a larger, heavier, slower car loaded with high tech safety features?

Concern about teen car accidents, especially in a local driving environment loaded with aggressive drivers is a real concern. As auto care professionals, experienced in the mechanics, capabilities and limitations of vehicles of all makes and models, we are here to help our customers optimize the driving experience for younger drivers, especially where safety is concerned. We take the time to research and recommend vehicles that are safe, reliable and also fit the family budget. We recommend a comprehensive evaluation of the new teen vehicle and make sure it passes the Maryland Safety Inspection.

Use BA Auto Care To Educate and Mediate

Sometimes teens and parents can’t agree on what make and model of car is best. That’s where we can come in as a professional auto care expert and mediate, explaining to the teen driver that the safest car is the best option for their first car.

Once a car is selected for your newly minted teen driver, we can step in to help them understand the responsibilities of auto ownership, from scheduling regular maintenance to keeping an eye out for the early onslaught of mechanical issues before they become major problems that affect their parent’s pocketbooks.

Keeping Our Teens Safe In Other Aspects of Their Life

Teen safety on the road is a major concern for all of us as parents. However, I was shocked to hear at the Local Health Improvement Coalition (LHIC) meeting recently that suicide, not auto accidents, is the biggest killer of our teenagers in Howard County.

So far this year four local teenagers have taken their own lives. I found this statistic shocking and almost unimaginable in a community such as ours. Even more shocking is the fact that 19 to 38% of students say they feel sad or hopeless for two weeks or more, and 16 to 20% say they’ve seriously considered attempting suicide.

I asked local child healthcare experts what we should do as parents to prevent this from happening and here are the recommendations I received:

  1. Make sure that your child’s doctor includes behavioral care as part of their routine checkup.
  2. If you see a change of behavior that you are concerned about, don’t wait. Consult with a mental health specialist immediately.

  3. If you need immediate assistance, call Grassroots at 410 531 6677 or visit www.grassrootscrisis.org, or call 211.

Keeping our teens safe on the road and in all aspects of their lives isn’t an easy task in today’s fast paced, sometimes impersonal world. But taking the time to communicate with our kids and with each other can go a long way in preventing future tragedies.

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Not too long ago, I was testing a car down Berger Road when I saw a man working under a school bus! He was changing the oil on the street! This got me thinking about mobile vehicle services. Some mobile automotive services are already common, such as mobile detailing and mobile windshield and glass repair; but what about mobile mechanics?

Mobile mechanics have increased in popularity over the last 8-10 years. This trend has likely been influenced by economic necessity stemming from the recession as well as the shift towards customer convenience.

A few companies in Columbia and throughout Howard County offer mobile mechanics. It’s easy to see what attracts people to this service, but how do the pros weigh against the cons?

Let’s take a look.

PROS

1. Price: Mobile mechanics do not have the added overhead of a facility and associated equipment. The resulting lower costs can save customers 20-30%.

2. Convenience: Mobile mechanics come to you at home or at work. This eliminates the need to take time from work, school, or other responsibilities in order to service your car, and can save you a significant amount of money.

3. It makes sense: This mobile option is ideal for certain preventive maintenance jobs that don’t take too long.

CONS

1. Limited access to the larger equipment needed to service vehicles: 

Lifts: Mobile mechanics may not have access to the lifts that allow for inspection of a car’s underside.  This step is very important, so ask if they have a professional quality lift rather than a jack and stands as with the mobile mechanic featured in the photo below. A jack and stands  can be dangerous on uneven surfaces especially on the side of a road. 

Professional grade balancing equipment: This equipment for balancing tires and aligning vehicles cannot travel with the mechanic.

2. Fewer resources: There is no one around to provide help if the mechanic needs a second hand or a second opinion. (Though with smartphones this is not such an issue now.)

3. Lack of more complex tools: Some factory equivalent scan tools cost so much they are out of reach for mobile mechanics.

4. Limitations based on job size: Larger jobs- those that require removing the interior of a car, for example- would be impossible to do in a driveway.

5. Limitations due to weather: Limitations in emergency situations.

6. In general, mobile mechanics are a good option for consumers who are looking for convenient and affordable car servicing rather than repairs.

When searching for a mobile mechanic, remember to:

  • Check for certifications like ASE.
  • Read reviews on Google, Angie's List, and Consumer Report.
  • Ask for references.
  • Confirm that the parts and labor have a warranty.
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One of the hardest things for some of our auto repair customers to understand is why their specific repair or service cost so much. An explanation of the repair may sound simple and straightforward, but the actual work required to accomplish that simple repair can be very complicated. The dilemma is, if we explain something in a way that a layperson can understand, the simple explanation can make a customer think it’s a simple job. Where possible, we like to share with a customer what’s involved in a repair, but that's not always feasible.

An opportunity arose the other day for me to help one of our customers better understand why the repair we were performing for her was so expensive. I was walking by one of our auto technician's bay and noticed he had many of the interior panels that make up the cargo carrying area of a vehicle spread out behind the car. I asked him what he was repairing. He shared with me that he was replacing an anti-lock, brake wheel speed sensor. On the particular car model he was working on, the electrical connector was buried under several panels. Many vehicles have the sensor connect near the wheel but not this car.

I took some photos and showed them to the customer. I had a feeling this was one of those repairs where the customer might not understand why it cost so much. The reaction was “Oh that’s why it’s so expensive”!

This situation, where the complex sounds simple, is the primary reason behind the few negative reviews we receive. Not long ago, we received a low rating online, and the customer’s stated reason was that the repair was overly expensive, “$500 for plugs wires and coil replacement!” I looked into the job and could not find any inconsistencies in the pricing, so I went online to do a price check and found that the lowest price for this repair was $424 and the highest was $547. We were right in the middle, and we use manufacturer quality or better parts, plus give a 3-year warranty.

Many services and repairs are hard for customers to understand and hard for us to explain. The complex interplay of dozens of computers and sensors on a vehicle’s Control Area Network (CAN) can be incredibly tough to convey in a short conversation with a person unfamiliar with the topic. Two skilled technicians can have a conversation about this complex system, but a service adviser and a customer -- not so much.

So how do we get around this? Well, we have to rely on trust.

It's just like when I go to the dentist. I trust the dentist we use, listen to his explanations, and just say yes to recommended services.

You'll need to have this same type of relationship with your auto service facility. Take the time to build a working relationship. Start with small jobs and slowly build upon this until you are comfortable saying yes.

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The recent flooding in Ellicott City was a stark reminder of a couple of things. First of all, that as neighbors, when some are negatively impacted, we are all negatively impacted. Secondly, it underscored the importance of planned development.

The Howard County Citizen's Association is hosting an event on Monday, June 11th at 6PM that addresses these issues. The event provides an opportunity to 1) get to know some of your neighbors better, including BA Auto Care's neighbor, Hysteria Brewing Company, 2) to learn how you can help to foster planned, responsible development via the film, :Columbia at 50 - A Bridge to the Future," and 3) to contribute to the disaster relief fund for Ellicott City -- all at the same time.

All of the proceeds from the $5 admission fee will be donated to the Ellicott City Disaster Relief Fund. Plus, attendees will receive the book, "Columbia, A Celebration" and a FREE beer -- over a $40 value for just $5.

As a business operating in Howard County, we make it a point to get to know our neighbors. In our current times, when so many transactions happen online, many people think that knowing the people who live or run a business near us isn't important. And then, something happens that brings us closer together. Unfortunately, it's usually a tragedy like what's happened to the Ellicott City Main Street Community. When you know the people behind the headlines, it becomes more than just a news story.

When something so severe happens, it impacts us all here in Howard County. Our governmental resources are redirected to help alleviate the damage. We pitch in to help in the recovery efforts. We try to provide support to the business owners who lost so much in the flood, many of whom are our friends and acquaintances. As a community, we are tied together.

From a planning aspect, we ponder on why something like this happens, and could it have been avoided. Some people chalk it up to climate change, while others point to the massive development that has replaced green space (that can absorb water) with hard surfaces (that can't absorb the water). And, of course, the flooding isn't just happening on Main Street. As the increasingly unabsorbed waters rush downhill, it's flooding basements, toppling bushes and trees, wiping out landscapes.

Of course this flooding isn't only happening in Ellicott City. Not that long ago, we watched in horror as Houston, TX and surrounding communities suffered immense damage, driven in part by over development and climate change.

It's so critical that as responsible citizens we get involved to make sure that our governmental leadership is taking the appropriate steps to mitigate and avoid situations like this where ever possible.

Again, on June 11th, the HCCA will be screening the film, Columbia at 50 - A Bridge to the Future , just across the street from BA Auto Care at Hysteria Brewing Company. We hope you will come out. Get to know your neighbors at the Hysteria Brewing Company, and learn how you can help to keep government accountable and help to ensure responsibly planned communities and development are the rule, rather than the exception.

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