Summer is here, the grass is green, and kids are out of school. What better way to spend time with your family than with a cross country road trip? There are so many great national parks and monuments available to visit, it can often be difficult to decide where to go. However, the most important thing to do is to make sure that your car is ready for whatever road lies ahead. Here is a quick list of things that should be inspected on your car before you leave. Fluids and Regular Maintenance: Check your vehicle’s engine oil, transmission oil and differential oil to prevent any damage to the key components that makes your vehicle run properly. Also perform any necessary maintenance that may arise during the trip, such as replacing the timing belt and spark plugs. It is also extremely important to check the amount of brake pad left, only if you plan on stopping during your road trip. Another thing to check is your headlights and brake lights; checking these will not only help keep you and your family safe, but it will also help you avoid unplanned stops and tickets from the friendly State Patrol. Battery: Be sure to check your battery and clean the battery terminals (the two prongs you connect the wires to) so that your vehicle will consistently start during the trip. Tires and Alignment: One of the most important things to check on your vehicle is the tread left on your tires. A [...]
While there are many important components to your vehicle, tires are one of the most important. They’re your only contact with the ground, the 4 (or 3 if you're driving a Reliant Robin) things that keep you going the direction you want to go! That means it’s important to know when to replace or maintain them, and how to check for signs of wear and tear. When should I replace my tires? How long your tires will last depends on many things, such as: type of tires, your driving style, and where you’re driving. As you’re driving, the treads on the tires get worn down, reducing their ability to channel rain or snow through the grooves. The easiest way to check your tire tread depth? A penny! Stick a penny upside down into the groove in your tires. If you can see the top of Lincoln’s head over your tread, your tires and worn and will need to be replaced. How do I check tire pressure? Since how to videos are much easier to follow than a blog, we put together a useful video segment for you to learn how to check your vehicle’s tire pressure! You can find it here. Do I need a wheel alignment? A wheel alignment adjusts the angle at which your wheels and tires make contact with the road. It’s important to have a wheel alignment performed on a regular basis, but there are some warning signs which mean it’s time to schedule an alignment [...]
When it comes time to service your vehicle, you have a lot of options. We’re here to help clear up some of the confusion about why it’s important to service your vehicle at a dealership, and why you should stay on top of maintenance schedules. Why should I get my car serviced at the dealership? Our technicians are trained to deal with your specific car brand. Because our technicians are factory-trained, they’re extremely knowledgeable about your car brand, and are able to quickly and efficiently diagnose any issues with your vehicle, saving you time and money. Why should I take my car to the dealership versus an independent shop? Even something as little as an improper oil change can have a detrimental effect on your vehicle. When you bring your vehicle to the dealership, you can rest assured knowing we only use OEM parts. We also have specialty tools the manufacturer requires, while independent shops may not have access to them. Our dealerships and employees are representatives of their manufacturer, and because of this, are held to very high standards. Independent shops are not certified by the manufacturer, so they aren’t held to the same standards. What is preventative maintenance and why do I need it? Preventative maintenance is regular service that needs to be performed on your vehicle. These services are things such as oil changes, fluid flushes, and belt replacements. This is important to lessen the likelihood of malfunction, which could result in costly repairs. To find the service [...]
You’ve researched vehicles, narrowed down your options, and you know what car you want. Now is the big moment: the car purchase. While purchasing a vehicle is a big decision that you only make a few times in a lifetime, we do this everyday, and want to make the process easy for you. Here are tips from our top salespeople about what to do to make your buying process go as smoothly as possible, and answers to questions you might not have even known you had. When purchasing your new vehicle, it’s easy to get excited and forget about the small details, like what to bring so you can take delivery of your new car! Here are the things you should make sure you have when you’re planning to purchase a car. While every purchase will require different things based on the buyer, bringing the items on this list should have you covered no matter the situation: Driver’s license or state ID Current and valid car insurance policy card Down payment Checkbook Cash Proof of income (must be dated within 30 days) Pay stubs W2 Job offer letter Proof of residence (must be dated within 30 days) Utility bill Bank statement Lease contract If you have a trade-in: Title Lien release All sets of keys What is your cash price? All of our vehicles are priced with our Best Price First, meaning we don’t waste your time with negotiation. All the prices you see are the prices you’ll pay. How [...]
Winter in the Midwest comes with lots of confusing terms for drivers. ABS, AWD, 4WD, snow/winter tires, all season tires...but what do they all mean, and why does any of this matter to you? In this month’s You Auto Know, we’re rounding up all the best winter driving information for you! All wheel drive and 4 wheel drive may seem like the same thing, but we're here help you understand the difference! Just like you choose the right pair of shoes for the occasion, you have to choose the right tires for the season for your vehicle! This means deciding between snow/winter tires and all season tires. Does “all season” mean the best choice for every month? Why do snow tires do a better job gripping the road in winter? Find these answers and more in our snow tires blog. Once you have the right tires on your vehicle, you need to know how to use them! This helpful article will show you how ABS can actually hurt your stopping distance. Keeping a safety kit in your car can help in case of an emergency. Here are the items we recommend including in your kit. Now that you’ve learned the difference between AWD and 4WD, why snow tires are your best bet for winter, and how to stop with ABS, find out what else you can do to prepare your vehicle for the upcoming season!
Here in Minnesota wintry weather is inevitable and it’s approach triggers the unavoidable – putting your fun car away for winter. Here at MHCC we have to tuck away 30+ cars every year and we've learned a few things about it over the years. It's always hard locking our favorite cars away for a long winter's slumber, but there are a number of steps that can be taken to ensure they are ready to hit the open road when Spring returns. We’ve included a number of storage tips below to make sure your car has a trouble free winter slumber and is in tip-top shape when it comes time to take it out of storage. • Prior to storage bring your car fully up to operating temperature • Find a dry, dark location to store your vehicle. Concrete floors are best. • Lay down plastic sheeting on top of the concrete where your car will be parked • If covering your car, give your car a good wash and wax if possible to prevent any scratching inflicted from covering a dirty car • To prevent excess air in the tank from condensing and causing potential issues, fill the fuel tank with a fresh tank of fuel and add fuel stabilizer. • Arrange an oil change prior to storage to prevent contaminants from working into your engine. An added benefit is that when spring arrives you’ll be ready to hit the road with fresh oil • Inflate your tires to 55 [...]
Chances are you’ve heard the term rotary engine, but if you’re like most people you likely don’t understand the mechanics behind the engine. We’re here to help. The video below does a great job explaining how rotary engines work, but we do have one minor quip. The video suggests the rotary engine is dead. Truth is we have two in the MHCC dojo that are alive and kicking, our newly acquired Mazda Rotary Pickup and our 1984 Mazda RX-7. Felix Wankel would be so proud.