Purchasing a Used Car – Things You Need to Do

Sometimes it may not exactly be a sensible decision for your family to purchase a new vehicle. With the extremely high costs of new cars and the drastic depreciation when they are driven off the lot, you could just end up breaking your bank. This is why used cars are proving to be a more economical and budget-friendly choice. Contrary to popular belief, secondhand cars offer remarkable value to buyers. You can easily find first-owner or two/three year old models that haven’t been driven much. However, while purchasing a used car may seem like a judicious option, you still need to be smart. So, without further ado, look at these tips below for purchasing a used car:

Analyze Your Budget

When it comes to purchasing a used car, it is imperative to figure out what you can afford. Whether you’re planning to finance or purchase the vehicle outright, have a budget set in mind. Also, factor in a little extra money for repairs and maintenance. Checking the Blue Book values and dealer prices is an easy way to determine the accurate budget for a vehicle you want to buy. Once you have determined a fixed budget, stick to it and avoid buying impulsively. Don’t hesitate on walking away from a deal if a car isn’t the right price. There are plenty more fish in the sea.

Do Your Research

After you have analyzed your budget and settled on a fixed amount of spending, begin your research on the car you want to buy. You have plenty of options when it comes to buying a ride. From sedans, coupes, minivans, pickup tracks, to compacts, there is a vehicle for every taste. Consider researching on the best models for each vehicle type. Also, try gaining information about the most common problems with popular models. This helps in figuring out what warning signs you should be look for when you’re shopping around for a vehicle.

Vehicle Condition

Once you have completed your research and decided on a car purchase, it’s time to contact some sellers. Ask them if you can come visit and analyze the vehicle’s condition. You have to check every inch of the car, interior and exterior. Go over the interior upholstery in detail as well as check the condition of the paint on the exterior body. If there are any dents or a minor fender-bender, don’t hesitate on asking the seller to get it repaired or compensate in price. It is imperative that you also check the engine parts by lifting the hood. If there are any rusty or dirty parts, it indicates problems with the engine.

Get a Mechanic’s Inspection

After you have checked out different vehicles and settled on one that you plan to buy, it is vital that you get a mechanic’s inspection. Even if the service engine light isn’t on, used cars could have serious problems lurking under the hood. A seller should be willing to let you get the car checked out by a mechanic. If the seller refuses, it is a clear sign of a shady deal. For each minor problem the mechanic finds, ask the seller to reduce the asking price. In the end, the cost to have a car inspected by a professional will be well worth the price. A mechanic can easily help you in discovering hidden problems, while assisting in figuring out the car’s value.

Vehicle History Report

After you have analyzed the vehicle’s condition by hiring a mechanic, it’s time for you to obtain a CARFAX® history report. This document is crucial for helping you reveal information about service points, title problems, and ownership history. It can even help you in determining whether they car has been in serious accidents. You can get the CARFAX® history report online. The main website has a huge list of comprehensive car reports available to purchase. These reports are pulled from a database that consists of more than seven billion car records.

Take It for a Test Drive

Once you have performed thorough research on the car you want to buy, it’s time for the test drive. Figure out whether it’s comfortable for you to get in and out of the vehicle. Do you have enough leg, head, and elbow room? What features does the car have for infotainment? Bear in mind you will be spending a lot of time in the car, so you need to be completely sure that you’re comfortable. Inspect the vehicle’s drive carefully. Check the touchscreen, lights, tires, audio system, and all convenience features to ensure they are in good working order.

The Leak Test

Upon taking the car for a test drive, make sure to inspect for any kind of leaks. Take a moment to park in a clean area on the road and let the car run for at least 30 seconds. Pump the gas a bit and then move the car to do a visible inspection of any leaking substances. If there is a black fluid on the parked space, this means oil is leaking from the engine. If the fluid is greenish, it means the anti-freeze is leaking, and if the color is pinkish, it means the leak is in the transmission. All of these are clear signs for repair.

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Get the Paperwork

Avoid buying a vehicle that doesn’t have a clean title. It is imperative that the used car you purchase doesn’t have any issues with the registration or title. For your protection, it is a wise decision to ask for a bill of sale if you plan to buy the car. Once you own the car, make sure to sign the title and update the registration and tags. Then, drive your new vehicle all over the city and highways!

Look into Certified Pre-owned

If you can’t find a good used vehicle that suits your budgetary needs and transportation requirements, consider looking for certified pre-owned models. These vehicles undergo a rigorous and thorough inspection process from dealers. As a result, they are mostly in very good condition. The exterior and interior of the cars are refurbished to look as brand new. These vehicles also come with extended warranties and roadside assistance.

So, if you are planning to purchase a used car, make sure to follow the tips mentioned above.

The Ultimate Guide for Planning a Road Trip with Your KIA

As the winter season begins to take over, families have already begun planning for their road trips and vacations. Even if you aren’t with family, it’s time that you pack your bags, get your KIA vehicle ready, and hit the open roads. While planning a perfect road trip can be an exhausting ordeal and presents its own set of challenges, it also presents plenty of opportunities to breathe in the nature, watch beautiful sceneries and enjoy the long drives and empty roads. Have you wanted to plan a road trip with your KIA? If so, then take the time out to read this guide below:

It’s Time to Do Some Planning

When it comes to going on a road trip with your KIA vehicle, it is imperative that you plan the destination, the route you will be taking, and the stops you will be making. Regardless of your travel style, it is vital that you KNOW exactly where you are going to prevent yourself from being stranded in the middle of nowhere.

Therefore, take the time out to research on your main destination and what untraveled roads you will be taking. If you are travelling with someone or family, consider planning a shorter trip. However, if you are venturing alone, enjoy the time in your KIA vehicle and enjoy the true spirit of a road trip.

Expect the Unexpected

Regardless of how much you plan for a road trip in your KIA, always expect things to go a little differently. This may sometimes be a hassle, but on some occasions, it may even be an unforgettable adventure or memory for you. Prepare yourself for some unexpected hurdles by getting your KIA vehicle equipped with the latest amenities and technologies for safety and entertainment.

Try not to stress too much, about what might happen, and go with the flow. Remember, the road trip with your KIA may make a good story someday. Plan some free time in your itinerary too, so that you can visit some of the most popular roadside attractions along the way.

Prepare a Solid Budget

While driving or planning a road trip may be less costly and more entertaining than flying, it does come with some hidden costs. You have to prepare for food, lodging and a variety of other fun stuff you plan on doing along the way. Note down all the possibilities of your road trip in a KIA and then figure out the costs accordingly. You can use a travel budget calculator. These have fields for you to enter for assessing budget, ensuring nothing is left out.

Make Sure Your KIA is Ready

Now that you have planned your road trip and prepared your budget, it’s time you get your Kia vehicle ready. There are plenty of KIA’s available for a road trip. If you don’t have one, you can always rent out a Cadenza, Sorento, Rio, Sedona, K900, or Forte. Each of these vehicles come equipped with the best and most latest technologies and features that are bound to make your road trip more enjoyable and fun.

In the weeks leading up to the road trip though, it is vital to ensure your vehicle is in premium condition. This is important for your safety and passengers as well. A good maintained vehicle won’t break down or give you trouble in the middle of nowhere. It will also offer better fuel-efficiency. So, without further ado, take some time out to inspect your KIA vehicle.

Make sure that all the scheduled and preventative maintenance procedures and checks have been completed. If you’re not sure what that entails, we have you covered. Check and top up all your fluid levels (oil, transmission, brake, and radiator), inspect the tread of your tires (check balancing and alignment), and check condition of spark plugs and wires. Also, make sure that you’re battery and alternator is functioning completely fine.

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Save Cash with these Kia Travelling Tips

Although you have prepared your budget, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t save where you can. Oftentimes, road trips can end up getting more costly than initially intended. Moreover, going under budget doesn’t mean fun at all. Since your biggest expense is gas, here are a couple of tips you can use when travelling in your KIA.

  • Before leaving for your trip, make sure to top your vehicle’s gas. You already know where the best prices for gas are going around. This will give you a solid start to saving money.
  • Always keep the weight of your cargo to a minimum. The heavier your car is, the higher the drag. This means, your car will consume more petrol. On the other hand, the lighter your ride, the longer she’ll glide.
  • If it’s time for refueling your vehicle, look for an exit with tons of fast food chains on the signs and multiple gas stations. Most often than not, the prices of fuel will be less, as there’s more competition.
  • Yes, you are heading for a road trip. This doesn’t however mean that you drive like a mad man. Always make sure to drive your KIA vehicle within the speed limit. Avoiding aggressive driving can save your gas mileage anywhere from 5% in town to 33% on the highway.

Stay Entertained on the Road

You need something to prevent yourself from getting bored, once you’re on the open road. Long journeys do tend to get a little boring, when not taking any stops. Boredom leads to feelings of exhaustion. Luckily, you’ll be driving a KIA vehicle. Most of these cars come equipped with a UVO infotainment system, which enables you to stream music, watch movies on the touchscreen, and handle voice calls via Bluetooth. There is even satellite radio just in case you don’t have music handy. Just in case though, do make sure to pick up some winner tunes to enjoy the journey!

Now that you are familiar with the tips mentioned above, planning a road trip with your KIA won’t be problem.

A Guide to Keeping Your KIA Clean

kia car careNothing can be worse than getting all clean and ready for work in the morning only to hop into what appears to be a rather filthy vehicle. The dust, the smell, the dirt, it just ruins the entire feel and look of your vehicle. Why would anyone leave it in such a poor condition? If it is a car or truck that is primarily used for towing/hauling work it is a different story.

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However, if you need to drive that vehicle to your workplace every day, you might want the interior and exterior of your vehicle to be pristine. People always talk about so-and-so produces to use in a vehicle, but no one really cleans their vehicles. If you want to keep your KIA vehicle clean, it’s time you followed these vital tips below:

  • Park It in Your Garage – If you have a garage attached to your home, park your KIA in it to keep the exterior clean from dust, debris, bird bombs, and tree sap. Never leave your car out in the snow, rain, or extreme sun, especially if your car has just freshly been detailed. To keep your shine going for much longer, make it a habit to park your vehicle in the garage. However, if you don’t have a garage available, try finding some other enclosed place nearby your home. Or if you, like me, having your garage packed with random stuff, consider renting a dumpster and selling/donating some of the stuff to create space.
  • Knock Your Shoes Before Stepping in – Make it a habit to give your feet a quick knock and wipe before hopping into your car. This way, you can prevent your Kia from getting dirty on the inside, especially when it starts snowing and things get slushy. Just open your car door, sit on the seat with your legs outside and knock your feet together. If this seems inconvenient, you can always splurge and pick up some heavy-duty rubber mats. It’s amazing how these mats keep the dirt off your boots. If you live in an area that gets a lot of snow, it’s mandatory to get a rubber mat for keeping your boots clean.
  • Wash Your Hands Thoroughly – You will be surprised to learn exactly how much dirt can get attached to your hands after applying makeup, natural human oils, lotions and while eating food, opening doors, and shaking hands. These everyday contaminants aren’t visible to the naked eye, but can easily go from your hands to the shifter, door handles, steering wheel, vehicle controls, and anything else you touch. Therefore, always make it a habit to wash your hands thoroughly, before entering your car. A good option is to carry a pocket hand-sanitizer with you 24/7.
  • Clean Messes Up Quickly – One of the main reasons why cars get dirty is the laziness of cleaning messed up quickly. What comes in must go out – right at that very moment or within the same day. So, give yourself the rule that any food, bags, and wrappers you bring in, have to be cleaned out of your car the same day. Don’t leave anything that can instead be stored in your house or thrown into a trash bin. Bear in mind the less clutter there is in your KIA, the less you will have to keep it clean.
  • Avoid Eating Inside Your Kia – There are days when you don’t have enough time on your hands, but need to grab a quick bite to eat. It’s completely normal. Happens to everyone. However, food and drinks can only increase your chances of a spill or other mess. You may also get food residue on your hands that inevitably get transferred throughout your entire Kia ride. Keep food away from the vehicle and you won’t have the deal with all the stains, crumbs, cartons, and wrappers that inevitably follow.
  • Do Not Smoke In Your Vehicle – To keep your Kia vehicle smelling good at all times, you might want to reconsider smoking inside. That dreaded smoke smell is something that can be extremely hard to remove. Anyone who has detailed a smoker’s car can attest to this fast. Unless your passengers are smokers, this smell isn’t something assuming. Cigarettes also have a nasty film that can be extremely challenging to remove. Therefore, avoid smoking and let your friends know it’s a non-smoking vehicle.
  • Keep Pets Out of Your Car – Many may consider this action quite harsh, but it really goes the extra mile when it comes to keeping your car nice and clean. This doesn’t mean you don’t love your pets. You will always consider them family. However, it is a fact that pets can be dirty. Hair, clobber, feces can all find their way into your interior, create a bad smell, and add to the dirt and grime already present in your vehicle. This smell, grime, and dirt can be removed with good products, but preemptive measures include avoid having them removed them all together.
  • Avoid Parking Under Trees and Street Lamps – You can see many individuals who might want to park near a street lamp to see clearly at night or under the shade of a tree for keeping their Kia rides cool in the sunny days of the summer. However, parking in these two spots can lead to unforeseen headaches. Trees can drop terrible sap, bugs are attached to the lights, and birds like to sit in the trees. The bird bombs, bug splatter, and tree sap can literally etch into the paint of your car, which can be a nightmare to remove. To keep the exterior clean, avoid these areas all together and find an enclosed place to park your Kia vehicle.
  • Create a Routine for Washing and Waxing – Last, but not the least, create a routine for washing and waxing your vehicle. It is advised to clean your car every week to keep it looking clean and wax your ride once in every month to keep the shine consistent. Keeping a washing and waxing schedule will ensure your car looks great at all times.

Therefore, now that you are familiar with the tips mentioned above, keeping your Kia vehicle clean will not be a problem.

Engine Modification 101 – A Guide to Boosting Car Performance

In its most basic form, your engine is one big air pump that uses a series of calculatingly timed combustions in order to push out and pull in great volumes of air. Ordinarily, the engine of any direct-fuel injection vehicle handles air intake this way: a piston moves down that creates a vacuum, which allows for air at atmospheric pressure to be drawn into the combustion chamber of your engine. This air is then combined with fuel, forming a unit of energy that is transformed into kinetic energy via combustion – thanks to the help of the spark plug, which ignites the air-to-fuel mixture.

Therefore, if you need to improve your car’s performance and make it go faster, you would require more efficient, powerful, and responsive combustion – something that all gear heads, adrenaline junkies, and car aficionados crave. More fuel going into the engine won’t exactly work, but by improving the relationship of air mixing with the fuel – you can benefit from an increase in torque and horsepower. Are you looking for ways to modify your car’s engine to accept more fuel and air? If so, then consider reading these top seven ways below:

1.      Forced Induction (Turbochargers & Superchargers)

If you want to leverage the greatest performance increase, go for installing a forced induction system like a turbocharger or supercharger. These two common engine customizations add a significant increase to your torque and horsepower by almost 50% thanks to the aiding of forced induction, which allows more air to be mixed with the fuel. This charged engine will then be able to generate more power that not only improves acceleration, but also improves fuel-efficiency.

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While a turbocharger gets its main power from the exhaust system, superchargers are powered by a belt that connects directly to the engine. This means, they both definitely aren’t the same and serve a different purpose. For instance, superchargers are perfect if you are looking for instant power upon stepping on the gas. They are also easier to install. Turbochargers, however, use “wasted” energy from the exhausted stream. Therefore, by nature they present a great delay (turbo lag) until you feel power.

2.      Performance Programmers & Chips

Every modern automobile comes equipped with a computer that uses chips and programmers for controlling your engine and ensuring that all your components comply with certain fuel octane and emission requirements. To boost the performance of your vehicle, you can consider adjusting your vehicle computer’s settings or add a new performance chip or programmer that can successfully modify ignition timing advance, fuel-to-air ratio, and turbo boost for significantly increase torque and power. Visit experienced modifiers to figure out how to use performance software applications. They will directly connect the software to your OBD-II port, which can be programmed with custom or pre-made settings.

3.      High-Flow Cat-Back Exhaust System

boost car performanceThis is one of the best engine and exhaust modifications for boosting car performance in terms of acceleration and top speed. A cat-back exhaust system is typically installed, replacing your factory exhaust pipe and restrictive stock muffler. Once installed, it is paired with an aftermarket high-flow catalytic convertor, which allows more air to pass through the engine. This superior system significantly ups the amount of airflow reaching the combustion chamber. However, it is imperative that when installing a high-flow cat-back exhaust system, you look for one with mandrel-bent pipes that boast a large diameter. This allows for further freedom in airflow, guaranteeing more power.

4.      Exhaust Header

Maintaining low production costs and meeting emission requirements can hinder the capability of your stock exhaust system producing and moving air efficiently throughout your engine. This is what makes it crucial for drivers looking to up their performance to install an aftermarket exhaust header. Not only can this component significantly boost torque and horsepower, but the short headers and long tube can also result in an improvement in fuel-efficiency. Long-tube headers can also be added for those wanting extra torque. These are usually ideal for high-revving super cars. On the other hand, short headers deliver more HP, making them perfect for drag racing.

5.      Larger Diameter Throttle Body

The throttle body of your vehicle works in conjunction with the fuel injection system. It is responsible for regulating the airflow heading towards your engine. Subsequently, it plays an incredibly important role in your engine, as with all combustion, air is required for your engine to fire properly. By installing a throttle body with a large-diameter, you can allow more air to pass through your engine. This delivers air at a higher rate, which boosts your engine performance. You feel a surge in engine power by up to 25 horsepower and feel faster acceleration. Installing a throttle body space can even increase engine torque and enhance your fuel economy.

6.      Cold Air Intake

If you are looking for one of the most affordable and easiest ways to increase the horsepower of your vehicle, do not hesitate on installing a performance cold air intake. The main purpose of this intake system is to cool the air coming into your engine. Colder air means that whatever enters your engine gets denser. Since the engine operates mainly by operating and burning air-to-fuel mixtures, the denser the air, the more power you will receive.  These performance intakes feature an innovatively shaped filter that offers an increase in surface area for pulling air through. Sometimes this performance modification can be 3x up in size from your original factory air filter.

7.      Aftermarket Air Filters

Last, but not the least, boost the performance of your vehicle by installing an aftermarket air filter. This new upgrade will allow for better airflow in your engine and result in better air-to-fuel ratios that block impurities and contaminants that have the ability of hindering performance over time. Aftermarket air filters don’t use the standard paper that is found in factory-equipped variants. They are available in a variety of materials and have a thin layer of cotton between several layers of impurity-catching thin mesh for boosting performance.

Are you planning to boost the performance of your automobile? If so, then consider going for these top seven engine modifications/upgrades.

The Ultimate Guide on Improving Your KIA’s Fuel-Efficiency

With the economy in recession and prices of fuel increasing, vehicle owners are constantly looking for ways to save money. Are you concfuel effeciencyerned about the prices of gas? Need to minimize the impact of your car’s emissions to the environment? You may instantly think of purchasing a hybrid or subcompact economy-friendly vehicle, but there are plenty of other ways for you to save money on fuel efficiency. With proper maintenance, you can leverage 30% better mileage. To help you get more miles for your dollars, follow these tips below:

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  • Check Tire Pressure – Under-inflated tires mean increased contact area between the road and tires. If your tires are 8 pounds under inflated (not a rare scenario), rolling resistance increases by 5%. This increases the friction, resulting in higher fuel-consumption. Over-inflated tires slightly improve consumption, but at the cost of less grip on the road. Therefore, it is advised to keep your tires inflated at the manufacturer’s recommended levels.

  • Use Cruise Control –
    Whenever driving on open roads like motorways/highways, don’t hesitate on activating cruise control. This feature is now available in almost all modern rides and can help you improve your car fuel economy by 6%. More advanced vehicles feature adaptive cruise control, which also saves you lots of fuel by limiting accelerator input.
  • Clean Battery Cables – One may never think that a simple thing as a battery cable could affect fuel economy, but in reality, it does. Corroded battery cables result in the alternator working harder to create electricity to power your car and charge the battery. This means, your car begins using more gas. Have the cables cleaned to improve fuel efficiency.
  • Regular Engine Checkup – Once computer controlled fuel-injection systems was introduced, old-fashioned “tune-ups” are no longer required. However, you need to get your engine checked regularly to ensure the fuel, oil, and air filters are in good condition. In addition, have your spark plugs, cables, and oxygen sensor checked, each of which have a great impact on fuel economy.
  • Inspect Chassis and Suspension – The suspension and chassis of your car play an important role in ensuring that your car is stable on the road and does not produce drag. Broken springs, worn out shocks, bent wheels, and misaligned axles can all contribute to drivetrain drag, along with increasing the risk of accidents. Have these parts repaired to increase safety and economy.
  • Drive Calmly and Steadily Always – Constantly speeding up and slowing down results in unnecessary wastage of fuel. By avoiding heavy braking and applying light throttle, you can reduce fuel consumption significantly, while also reducing the wear and tear of vital mechanical components. Research suggests that fuel economy is directly affected by the driving techniques you use by up to 30%.
  • Avoid “Revving” the Engine – Many drivers have this thing of revving the engine at traffic lights, after starting the car in the morning, or before switching the engine off. Revving your engine only wastes fuel unnecessarily. It also results in the oil washing down the walls of the cylinder. This can be bad for your next start up, as cylinder walls get dry, making it difficult for the engine to utilize the motor oil present.
  • Don’t Rest Your Left Foot on the Brake – Many rookie drivers of KIA vehicles with automatic transmissions often use their left foot to press the brake pedal when driving. This is not the right way to drive an automatic, as even a slight pressure on the brakes when you are driving creates drag on the components, which causes premature wear and tear. To overcome the “dragging” produced by this action, the engine will also demand additional fuel usage.
  • Avoid Taking Roads Filled with Dirt/Gravel – Try your best to avoid driving on rough roads whenever possible. Dirt and gravel can easily rob you of 30% on your gas mileage. Every time the wheels bounce up and down, forward motion energy tends to move away from the vehicle. Bumpy roads are also rather uncomfortable. Look for alternative routes for improving fuel-efficiency, while ensuring your car doesn’t suffer any damage.
  • Drive in the Highest Gear Possible – A driving tip that has been used for generations. If you want to improve fuel-economy, make sure you use the highest possible gear when driving to reduce the strain on the engine. For instance, a vehicle driving at 60 mph will use 25% more fuel in the third gear rather than the fifth. Just make sure that the throttle input isn’t going overboard. If your car has an “instant fuel economy” setting, watch the gauge and keep the liters per kilometers/miles low.
  • Lighten the Load Off your Vehicle – Take unnecessary bulky items out of your vehicle to remove excess weight. If you do not need something, do not pack it. The lighter the load, the lower the fuel consumptions and emissions. On the other hand, the more weight you put in your vehicle, the harder your engine will have to work. Carrying excess weight leads to rise in consumption.
  • Don’t Let the Vehicle Stay Idle For Long – Idling consumes almost half-a-gallon to one gallon of gas per hour (one of the reasons why your car consumes more petrol in heavy traffic). It also results in increased CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. Modern vehicles feature advanced technologies that shut off engine valves for saving petrol. However, if you have an older vehicle, avoid leaving the engine idle. Also, to warm your engine effectively, drive it, don’t rev it.
  • Ultrasonic Cleaning for Fuel Injectors – If you really want to boost the fuel-efficiency of your vehicle, have your fuel injectors removed and given an ultrasonic bath. Clean injectors will give a better and more even fuel-to-air mixture, which results in a more predictable burn in the cylinder, contributing to improved gas mileage. If your injectors have never been cleaned, it’s advised to get the job done from a professional.

So, if you want to improve your KIA’s fuel-efficiency, make sure to follow the above mentioned tips.

A Guide to Preparing Your Vehicle for the Summer

summer drive tipsWhen the temperature climbs higher on the outside, things start heating up under the hood of your vehicle. During this weather change, it is essential that you not give your car the cold shoulder. Whether you are commuting daily to work or planning a long road trip, take some time to perform a little routine maintenance. The long days, stronger sun, and beach season demand that you get in shape by hitting the gym.

Similarly, before you get on the highway for an early summer getaway, it is vital to keep your car in tip-top shape. Fortunately, you can use several preventative steps for keeping your engine cool. Below are some useful tips on how to prepare your car for the warm-weather drivers and prevent things from heating up in the engine:

Check Your Tires

As the summer months get closer and the snow on the group begins disappearing, you should have your winter tires replaced. It is important that if your previous tires were worn out, you buy new all-season tires. They deliver better traction in a wider range of roadway conditions, be it slippery roads, gravel-filled roads, or roads filled with potholes and bumps.

However, replacing the tires shouldn’t be your only priority. It is vital that you also have your tires rotated and balanced for improving fuel economy and ensuring a smoother ride. Additionally, don’t forget to check the air pressure. Check your owner’s manual to figure out the right amount of air pressure. This will deliver better handling, while significantly increasing the life span of your tires (over- or underinflated tires may result in drag and excessive wear and tear).

Brake Check

This step goes hand-in-hand when having your tires checked and replaced. Analyze your brakes and figure out whether they require replacement. There are many signs to look for when your brakes are worn out. If your brakes make a squealing or scratching sound, it is a clear sign that the brakes shoes or pads have passed their limit. Similarly, if you notice vibrations, vehicle leaning to the left/right, or delays while braking, it is imperative that you have it checked. Visit a professional mechanic immediately and have your brakes replaced to avoid any sort of problems like less-effective stopping (which could even result in collisions or serious accidents).

Change Your Oil

With the change of season, it is vital that you have your oil changed. Bear in mind that the oil in your engine should always reflect the outside temperature. Therefore, if you haven’t already replaced the oil, give your engine some new life and energy using fully synthetic motor oil that is optimized for good performance. New oil keeps your engine running smoothly and offers great protection in a wide range of conditions. It also improves your fuel-economy, ensuring you don’t have to pay much for gas.

Check Your Fluid Levels

Every car owner has perhaps faced that annoying moment, when they hit the windshield washer and nothing comes out. This can cause serious issues, especially if you are driving in foggy weather with lots of moisture. The windshield might get completely fogged, making it difficult for you to see. Similarly, if the fluid levels of your brake, transmission, and power steering aren’t topped up, you may experience poor vehicle performance. So, before the summer season arrives, make sure to top all fluid levels.

Check Engine Belts and Hoses for Cracks and Wear

Changes in weather and climate can cause great damage to your engine components, especially belts and hoses. As soon as the winter season starts fading, your belts and hoses might get completely soft. This makes them vulnerable to cracks and extensive wear, especially around places where the hoses are clamped and connected. Have them checked and replaced, if in poor condition. However, do not attempt to touch the belts or hoses, after driving your vehicle (as it may cause serious injuries and burns).

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Flush the Cooling System

An excellent method for keeping your engine cool during the summer season is to have your cooling system flushed. You can refer to your owner’s manual for recommendations or advice on how to do it. However, it is preferred that you visit a professional mechanic, so that you don’t damage any other engine component. If the weather is moderate, an annual cooling system flush is good. However, if you’re in a state that experiences extremely hot summers, it is vital that you change your coolant twice a year.

Use a Good Radiator Coolant

During the hot days of summer, your car needs hydration just as your body. Using simple water or the wrong coolant will result in pump and radiator damage. Therefore, it is advised that you consider using a good anti-freeze fluid. These products contain corrosion inhibitors that have a higher boiling point than water. As a result, they do a better job in keeping your engine cooled. Before buying coolant though, it is imperative to read the label to confirm it’s safe for your vehicle’s make/model.

Test Your Air-Conditioning

With the summer months arriving, you will undoubtedly be using more of the air-conditioning system rather than the heater. Therefore, before the mercury gets too high, run a quick test on your car’s air conditioning system. Turn the AC on high to the coldest level and make sure that cool air is coming out of the vents. If you feel the airflow is not strong enough to cool the interior of the vehicle, hear unusual noises, or experience any problems, have your AC system checked for refrigerant leaks or pipe deterioration.

Apply a Protective Coating

Similar as to applying suntan lotion at a lake or beach, it is vital to remember that you car can be damaged by the UV rays of the sun too. Subsequently, do not be hesitant on applying a coating of sun protective layer on your vehicle’s exterior. Also, use a sun polish for the interior of the vehicle to prevent harm from windshield reflections.

Therefore, now that you are familiar with the tips mentioned above, preparing your vehicle for the summer won’t be a problem.

Getting Your Tires Rotated at Turnersville Kia

tire rotationWhen you get car maintenance done, you often think about getting the oil changed, having the fluids flushed and even your tires inflated to their proper point. You may get some other things checked but one thing people forget about more than anything else is getting their tires rotated.

Coming into Turnersville Kia, or any of our other dealerships like Burlington Kia and Allentown Kia, you are going to be getting the best service possible. Our staff know what they are doing and they want to make sure that you get the best service possible because we want to provide the best service possible. Providing the best service means that we provide total service when you come into our dealership. Total service means providing everything including making sure that the tires are rotated.

We all know that tires need to be rotated, but most people do not get it done and most people typically ignore it.

First, let’s address what is tire rotation. Well, it is just as the name suggests. You are taking tires and you are shifting their positions around the vehicle. The tires in the front may go to the back, or switch sides, and vice versa. It is a very simple procedure done on a vehicle that doesn’t take very long, but it can be very important for your vehicle.

When you drive, the weight that is on the front axle and the back axle is very different because of the weight of the engine. This means that there is uneven wear on your vehicle’s tires. Front-wheel drives have the engine in the front, but also the transaxle in the front, and that adds to the overall weight differential. When you brake and steer, further weight shifts are put on the vehicle. This additional stress causes the front tires to wear out a lot faster, so you want to make sure you get tire rotations done.

When you turn, the outside front tire is going to wear out faster, and right turns are going to be tighter than left turns and those are going to cause further wear on the one tire. When you are parking, the tires of the right side of the vehicle are going to be bumped and rubbed against the curb.

When there are mechanical problems with the vehicle, that can also cause uneven wear on the tire. If the alignment is off and that is causing the vehicle to turn, the driver will often have to correct by steering against that tendency to turn the vehicle. This in turn causes even more wear on the vehicle.

So, when you have regular tire rotation, you are helping to prevent increased tire wear from becoming a problem. The more a tire wears, the greater the chance that the tire could go flat, or blow out on the road while you are driving. You don’t want that to happen.

Most car manufacturers recommend that you rotate your tires about every 5,000 miles to 8,000 miles. Generally, the same amount of time that you get the oil changed, you get the tires rotated. At Turnersville Kia, you can get this all done at one place by our expert staff. We will ensure that you get everything you need done, including the important tire rotation.

When you bring in your vehicle for a tire rotation, we are going to typically take the back tires and move them to the front, and front tires are going to move to the back. If the tires are unidirectional tires, then we are going to rotate front to back, on the same side to ensure that the rotation direction is maintained on the tires. If a full-size spare tire is part of the tire rotation, then we will have to use more complex tire rotation patterns. In addition, if there are snow tires, then we will do the same as there is more that goes into the rotation than just moving tires from front to back and back to front.

Interestingly, if the maximum traction is needed, the best tires on the vehicle should actually be kept at the rear of the vehicle. This helps to ensure that the vehicle has greater traction when in difficult conditions.

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Another interesting thing is the fact that some vehicle manufacturers actually recommend that you do not rotate the tires at all. These are typically manufacturers like BMW. These tires are designed to have different sizes based on where the tire is located on the vehicle, or they have unidirectional rotation tread, which makes rotation impossible. It should be noted that Kia vehicles do not do this, so tire rotation is very important.

Why should you come to Turnersville Kia then? Well, we are extremely good at what we do. Our staff are experts and they have decades of experience with maintaining vehicles. This doesn’t just apply to doing tire rotations, but to a wide variety of maintenance including total fluid changes and more. When you bring your vehicle into us, you know that you are going to get the best service possible. We are going to make sure that your vehicle is going to leave our dealership running better than it was before. We will ensure that the vehicle you are driving runs great, feels great, and that comes down to tire rotations and much more.

Tire rotation may seem like something that is not needed, or something that doesn’t need to be done when there are so many other things you can do with your vehicle. The truth is that getting your vehicle’s tires rotated is incredibly important and something that must be done on a regular basis. Doing something like that is going to help ensure that your vehicle is not going to break down, blow out a tire, or have severe problems down the road. Don’t discount getting your tires rotated. When you need it done, the best place to go is Turnersville Kia.

Why Oil Changes Are Important

change-engine-oilWhen you come to Allentown Kia to get an oil change, we are always happy to do it. Getting an oil change is important, but people often don’t do it as often as they should. The thing is, people will get the oil changed, and then they will see the little tag on their car telling them when to get their oil changed again. Some follow that guideline, while others just do it when they find the time.

It is extremely important that you ensure you get your oil changed whenever you can because failure to do so can cause severe problems for your car and it can lead to your car having many problems down the road.

When you come to Allentown Kia, we love to see you and we love to talk to you. We want to help ensure that your car runs great for the future because we don’t want your car breaking down. Whether you come to Allentown Kia, Burlington Kia or Turnersville Kia, we want you to have a well-functioning car, and that comes down to ensuring you get those oil changes that are going to save your vehicle.

How do oil changes save your vehicle? Here are a few reasons:

  1. One of the biggest things that oil does for your vehicle is that it maintains the engine lubrication of the vehicle. Every part on your car needs to be lubricated or it is going to seize up. These components are going to wear down, and they are going to heat up, and that is going to happen a lot faster if you don’t make sure you keep the oil maintained. Each car is going to need a certain type of oil, and it is important that is done properly.
  2. Engine components also heat up. They heat up the more you use them and the longer you drive. Oil will keep the friction from becoming too bad and it will ensure that your engine parts do not overheat. If you maintain clean and sufficient amounts of oil, it prevents friction rom causing any sort of overheating.
  3. As you drive, particles and sludge begins to build up in your engine. These dirt particles can be a serious problem to your engine and they can lead to the engine’s life span decreasing because of increased corrosion. These particles eventually become sludge and that sludge will cause a severe decrease in performance in your engine components. To keep this from happening, you need to ensure you keep your oil clean and change it often.
  4. Gas mileage is important in the day and age when gas prices are high. The worse your engine lubrication, the worse your gas mileage is going to be. According to the Department of Energy, you can actually improve your gas mileage by two per cent with frequent oil changes. Add in proper tire pressure improving performance to three per cent, and you have five per cent improved mileage by just doing those two things. If it costs you $50 each time you fill up, then that is $2.50 every time you fill up. If you fill up eight times a month, that is $20 a month, $240 a year. That is no small number.
  5. Most importantly, oil changes done on a regular basis are going to improve the vehicle longevity. Don’t get us wrong, we love seeing you at Allentown Kia, and we want to see you often but we don’t want to see you losing your vehicle before you should because the oil wasn’t maintained. We want you to have a vehicle you love, for as long as you have it.

Now that you know why you should be changing your oil, the next thing to talk about is how often you should come in to Allentown Kia and have your oil changed. We don’t want you coming in too frequently when you don’t need to, but we also don’t want you having to wait too long to get your oil changed.

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Usually, most places will recommend that you change your oil ever few thousand miles. Originally, owner manuals said that you should change your oil every 5,000 miles, but Consumer Reports did a study and found that there was little need to change your oil between 3,000 and 7,500 miles.

In general, you will want to make it a personal choice about when you get the oil changed. You should get an oil change done every few months, especially if you are driving a great deal. In general, make sure you get an oil change at least once every four to six months, and you should get a change done every 5,000 to 10,000 miles if possible.

When you come to Allentown Kia, we will make sure that you get exactly what you need for your oil change. Not only are we going to do an oil change for you, we are going to make sure that you get everything your car needs. You are going to get everything done on your vehicle from the oil change to various other fluid changes. We will also make sure that your vehicle is going to run great after the oil change, and you are going to have a vehicle that runs great because of the oil change.

A vehicle is a wonderful thing. It can get you from point A to point B and it can do it in a way that ensures you get where you need to go in an efficient manner. The thing is, you need to make sure that you drive your vehicle in an efficient way and oil changes are a big part of that. It is important you get those oil changes, but get them on a good schedule to ensure you don’t do it too often or too little. You can always ask our expert staff at Allentown Kia as well about when is the best time to get that oil change done.

Fall Road Hazards: What to Avoid

When most people think of a dangerous time of the year to be on the road, they think of winter. The truth is that every season presents its own dangers and challenges for the road. If you are going to be driving a lot during this fall season, here are some of the biggest fall road hazards that you should watch out for:

1. Traffic – You might not think of traffic as a hazard, but especially if you are driving distractedly, traffic can be very dangerous. There is usually an increase in traffic during the fall, first, because people have returned to school, which means more drivers on the road in the morning and afternoon as parents take their kids to school or teenagers and young adults drive to school. There is also going to be higher than average pedestrian traffic, especially if you have to drive through school zones during your commute. Many pedestrians, young children especially, will step out into traffic without looking both ways to make sure the road is clear, which puts the onus back on you to watch for them and avoid them.

 

fall-road-hazards2. Leaves – Can leaves on the road actually be dangerous? If you live in the northeast, where there are always plentiful fall colors, leaves falling from trees can present a serious challenge to drivers. The make roads slippery and a pile or mass of leaves can hold on to moisture for days or even weeks after the most recent rain. This means that even if it has not rained recently, the leaves might still be slippery. If you are going to fast or taking a turn too sharply, a pile of wet leaves could be just as slippery as ice on the road. In addition, leaves can hide other hazards on the road, like pools of water or potholes. Instead of zipping through every pile of leaves, make sure to slow down and approach them in the same way that you would approach ice.

 

3. Fog – While there might have been fog during the summer, fog is far more common during the colder mornings and days of fall. Fog will gather in the low places around large bodies of water or in between mountains and can reduce visibility to just a few feet, depending on how thick the fog is. Especially if you only encounter thick fog a few times a year, it can be difficult to understand how to drive in it. The two biggest things to remember are to slow down, so that you are able to see and react to anything in front of you with this reduced visibility and to not turn on your high beams. Your car might have a fog lights setting—choose this setting if you do have it. It is important for you to have your lights on so you can see and other vehicles can see you, but your high beams will just reflect off the fog and produce glare.

 

4. Frost – It might not completely freeze at night yet, but it might still be getting cold enough for the ground to collect frost. You’ll most commonly find slippery frost on your lawn, but with enough buildup of frost on the road, it can be just as slippery as if it was completely iced over. In some areas, you might actually start to see your roads iced in the early morning, even if it is completely melted and dry once the sun is up. Be particularly wary of bridges and overpasses, as these areas are the first to freeze and become icy during colder weather.

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5. The sun – The sun can be a problem when you are trying to drive during all times of year, but you are more likely to be on the road while it is going down more often during the fall, because it starts to set around six or seven and will only set earlier and earlier the later in the season it becomes. This sort of sun glare can make it very difficult to see what is going on while driving. If you feel that you are being blinded by the sun, it might be time to invest in some sunglasses or to use your sun shades more strategically. While you likely will not be able to completely block out the sun, you should be able to shield yourself from it enough that you can get home safely.

 

6. Low tire pressure – As the temperatures start to drop, the air in your tires will contract, which lessens their tire pressure. Why be worried about this? Because underinflated tires can become a potential hazard. If you have a new vehicle, it will probably tell you when your tires are underinflated, making it easy to know when you need to go to a gas station or service shop and have them filled. Older vehicles, however, will not have these warnings. It is a good idea to check your tire pressure and make sure all of your tires are at the PSI prescribed in your owner’s manual.

 

7. Animals – If you live in an area where wildlife is common, you have probably already started to see deer, elk, and moose on the sides of the road. As the temperatures drop in the mountains, they might be coming down in search of food. These creatures, while fun to see during your commute, can be as much a road hazard as ice. When you see an animal on the side of the road, slow down—not just to get a better look, but to make sure you have time to react if they dash out into the road.

 

Come visit us or one of our sister dealerships in Burlington or Turnersville!

How to Make Driving More Comfortable

drivingYou don’t just want your vehicle to be beautiful—you want it to be comfortable, too. Especially if you spend a lot of time in your car (whether you live in the country and have to drive to get into the city or have a long commute to work or school every day), you want your vehicle to be as comfortable as it can possible be. Plus, right now, before the weather starts to take a turn for the worst, is the best time to hit the open road and take a late-season road trip. Here are a few tips for making sure your ride is comfortable, no matter how long you have to be in the car:

Buy the Right Car

If your car does not start out comfortable, it is going to be very difficult to make it comfortable in the future. Buying the right car is the first step of making sure that you are comfortable during long drives. All Kia vehicles are designed to be extremely comfortable for both driver and passengers. There is no worse vehicle than one that is comfortable for the driver by very uncomfortable for the passengers. If the backseat is not as comfortable as the front seat, you might want to look for a different car.

When purchasing a car with comfort in mind, be sure to sit in the backseat along with the front seat. This is especially important for families of more than two people. If your children are often going to be sitting in the backseat of the vehicle, you want to make sure that it is going to be comfortable. As a person who, as a child, had to endure many summers road tripping in the back of my parent’s Ford SUV, I can attest that your passengers will be much happier if your backseat is comfortable.

What makes a backseat comfortable? On top of making sure that the seats are both soft and supportive, you will want to make sure that you have enough leg room, even if the person in the front moves their chair backwards. Many vehicles are designed to look like they have plenty of leg room, until you are actually sitting in the car and realize that in order for the person in the front to be comfortable, they have to move their seat back, which interferes with the comfort of the people in the back of the vehicle.

During your test drive, do not be afraid to ask the salesperson to pullover and test out all of the seats. You will also want to make sure that you can easily adjust the mirrors, seat, and steering wheel, so that you can see behind you and have the best position for your hands on the wheel. You might not notice it during your test drive, but if it is impossible to get your mirrors, seat, and wheel into the right positions for your height, you will always be uncomfortable while driving.

Another consideration should be the features the car offers. For example, a backup camera could make backing out of parking spaces or your driveway much easier, without having to crane your head around to see if there is anything behind you. Blind spot detectors and lane divergence warnings are two more great features that help you drive without worry.

Maintain Your AC/Heating Systems

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You might need to “flush” your air conditioning system every time the people at your oil change shop tell you to, but you should have your system regularly inspected and maintained. Air conditioning and heating systems seem to malfunction at the most inopportune times.

Especially because the weather is cooling off, now is the perfect time to make sure that your system is in proper working order, so that when you need to defrost your car or heat it up so that it is comfortable to be in, you do not have to worry about whether or not it will actually start. If not cleaned, dust, bacteria, and even fungus can start to build up and grow in your system, which could give it a nasty smell every time you turn it on, which is definitely not going to make you comfortable.

Get Your Maintenance

There is nothing worse than driving and realizing that something is wrong with your car. If it is time for an oil change, get an oil change. If you need to have your tires rotated, have your tires rotated. You do not want to be in a position where you cannot get to your destination because you have not been taking proper care of your car. Regularly check your coolant and windshield washing fluid levels, at the very least. Winter may be on its way, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t need coolant to keep your engine from overheating. Check for leaks in your system by looking at the ground underneath where your car is parked.

Adapt to Changing Weather

There’s no need to speed during periods of bad weather. The fall often comes with unpredictable weather, which can making driving a hassle. You can make driving more comfortable by just slowing down during periods of bad weather. Most people do not think of rain as particularly dangerous, but it can be if you are going too fast. The same goes for fallen leaves on the road. Many don’t realize that these leaves can be very slick and slippery, especially if you are speeding.

Come visit us or one of our sister dealerships in Allentown or Turnersville!