Top 3 Reasons to Buy a Compact Car

2017 Chevrolet Sonic - Reasons to Buy a Compact Car

While it might be hard to give up your truck for a compact car, there’s a lot of reasons people love driving the new Chevy Sonic. Here’s just a few.

Buying a compact car can be a fantastic choice, even for those with more than one passenger. While drivers who are used to large vehicles may find them cramped at first, there are many benefits to compact cars that make them well worth having a little less space. Here are a few reasons to buy a compact car from us here at Wiesner of Huntsville.

Affordability

Compact cars are some of the most affordable models on the market thanks to their size and weight. Generally starting at under $20,000 for a near-top trim, compact cars are affordable to first-time buyers, families on a budget, and drivers who don’t need a large vehicle.

Fuel Efficiency

Arguably the best reason to buy a compact car, most drivers seek high fuel economy and few models meet their needs like compact cars. The 2017 Chevrolet Sonic, for example, earns up to an EPA-estimated 34 hwy mpg.

Despite popular belief, compact cars often come with plenty of pep that makes them fun to drive. While they may not be sports cars, a compact car can offer a thrilling ride all the same since they are so light.

Handling

The standard small sedan offers precision handling, especially if there’s a sport-based model, like the Sonic RS. The lightweight design offers a quick response time and a turbocharged engine can provide high fuel economy while putting plenty of power to the road.

 

No matter why you’re thinking about getting a new compact car, stop by our Huntsville, TX dealership to take one for a test drive today!

Signs You Need New Brakes

Flooded road- stop sign into water - signs you need new brakes

If you were on this road, you would want to have some peace-of-mind knowing that you could stop! By staying in-tune with your car, you can be sure your brakes work.

When it comes to safety systems, none is more vital than the braking system. Responsible for slowing down and stopping to prevent an accident, the braking system is one of the more complicated items to maintain. The brake pads don’t wear at a given rate, instead depending on where and how you drive. Fortunately there are a few signs they need attending to. Here at Wiesner of Huntsville, we know all of the signs you need new brakes and will be happy to help in any way we can!

Signs You Need New Brakes:

  1. Sound – If you hear a squealing or high-pitched screeched when you hit the brakes, make a service appointment immediately. That sound is caused by metal scraping metal and indicates that the brake pads are nearly gone. For your safety and the safety of others, have your brake pads replaced sooner rather than later.
  2. View – In most vehicles, you can look through the wheel spokes to see the brake pad. The outer portion will be pushed up against the rotor. If the pad looks to have less than a quarter inch remaining, make a service appointment.
  3. Feel – If it takes a while to slow down, the brake pads are likely worn down and are becoming unresponsive. On the other hand, if the pedal sinks to the floor, it’s a sign that there’s a leak somewhere in the braking system. Either way, it’s important to have a technician inspect your brakes.

Tips for Saving Fuel in Summer

saving fuel in summer

After a long period of low gas prices we haven’t seen since the 1990s, gas prices are starting to rise again, just in time for the fuel-sapping heat of summer. Here are some helpful tips on saving fuel in summer to keep you out of gas-related debt on your road trip vacation.

Summer is hard on fuel use because it’s hot, and you want to use your air conditioning a lot or have the windows rolled down. Both of these things affect fuel economy—AC uses more energy, and rolling the windows down increases drag, which uses more gas.

To minimize how hard your AC has to work, it’s also a good idea to keep your car as cool as possible. Park in the shade or in a garage when you can, leave the windows down so air can cycle through, and roll them down for a few minutes before turning on the AC so the car has time to cool off.

Otherwise, follow the usual fuel-saving rules: don’t go too fast, coast to a stop, and lay off the brake.

How to Replace a Car Battery

how to replace a car battery

It’s not too hard to replace a car battery – much easier than you think! So if you don’t want to spend the money on a maintenance trip but your battery is shot, you should be able to do this at home by following these simple steps.

Always let your vehicle cool off before you start working under the hood or you might burn yourself. Once the vehicle is cool, find the battery and start by disconnecting the black (negative) battery cable from the battery using a wrench or, preferably, a tool designed for the job like a battery wrench. Be very careful not to let metal touch the battery posts.

Next disconnect the red (positive) cable. There will be a clamp holding the battery in place; remove it and place any loose parts in a secure spot where they won’t get lost. Now, pull the battery out, being careful not to wiggle it too much and hit the sides.

Put the new battery in its place and secure it again with the clamp. Clean it off, remove the caps on the posts, and then apply dielectric grease and put anti-corrosion washers on the posts. Reconnect the cables, starting with the positive.

How to Protect Your Car in Hot Weather

hot weather - dog and woman in convertible summer

As the weather heats up, the wear and tear on your car can get worse. Here are a few ways you can protect your car in hot weather:

  1. Use a windshield sun shade – These protect your interior from baking in the heat and keeps your car cooler when you get back inside after a hot day.
  2. Use protective sprays – There are products available that can provide another protective layer, like vinyl or leather protectants.
  3. Consider tinted windows – You’ll need to review your state’s regulations on the amount you can tint a window, but these can keep your upholstery from cracking.
  4. Park in the shade – This is obvious, but when you can, park in the shade. Look for streets where the shade created by buildings will pass over your car during the hottest part of the day.
  5. Check the car’s battery – When it gets hot, excessive fluid evaporation reduces the life of the battery. Make sure it’s functioning in top shape.
  6. Travel when it’s cooler – If you can, try to drive during the cooler parts of the day, like early morning or late evening. It will be easier on you, your passengers, and your car.

Six Signs You Are An Aggressive Driver

Your daily commute is stressful enough. Why do you want to test the limits of your blood pressure by driving like a madman? Maybe you don’t even know what kind of driver you’ve become. Unfortunately the other drivers around you don’t have the luxury to be in denial. If you’re unsure, here are a few signs you are an aggressive driver.

signs you are an aggressive driver

You might be an aggressive driver if:

  1. You never, ever slow down when the light turns yellow.
  2. Other drivers are constantly giving you dirty looks and flashing angry gestures.
  3. You often take it upon yourself to teach other drivers a lesson.
  4. You derive pleasure and laugh gleefully when you deliberately tailgate another driver.
  5. You feel it necessary to honk your horn more than once a week.
  6. You drive in ways that you would never want to instill in your children.

If any of this sounds like you, try leaving earlier for your destinations. And try making your commute more enjoyable with good music, podcasts or audiobooks. From all of us here at Wiesner of Huntsville, we hope you always stay safe and at peace out on the roads.

Christmas Travel Tips from Wiesner of Huntsville

Christmas Travel Tips

Traveling during the holidays can be stressful. While you may have done it year after year, there are still a few things you may forget. That can change this holiday season! Whether you’re heading to England or driving a few hours to another state, we here at Wiesner of Huntsville have Christmas travel tips that ensure a smooth trip!

  1. Plan Ahead. While you may be used to booking flights a week in advance, it never hurts to plan further ahead! The end result could be a cheaper ticket, package deals, or more convenient flight times. If you’re driving, plot out your route ahead of time. It wouldn’t hurt to come up with a backup in case there’s a road closure. Packing a few days in advance will give you time to remember anything you’ve forgotten as well.
  2. Avoid Crowds. No matter what airport you’ve traveled from, crowds are a sure thing around the holidays. While many think crowds are just a part of traveling, you can avoid them in one easy step: book a flight early in the morning or late at night. Most people aren’t traveling at this time, making it a breeze to get through security to your gate.
  3. Know the Rules. The TSA isn’t known for making exceptions to their rules. Print out the rules to check while you pack. Knowing how much liquid is allowed and how to pack it can make the difference between making and missing your flight!

From all of us here at Wiesner of Huntsville, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Prep Your Car for Winter with These Care Tips

Even down here in Texas, it’s a good idea to prep your car for winter and all the blustery weather that comes with it. Before it’s too late, follow these late-fall care car tips to protect your vehicle from the season’s worst.

Prep Your Car for Winter

Take care of your radiator.

Your radiator maintains your engine temperature, which makes it critical to your car’s overall health. Make sure your radiator system is properly filled with fresh antifreeze.

Take care of your battery.

Cold weather does a number on your battery, especially if it’s old. Check the positive and negative battery terminals for any rust or corrosion. Before bad weather is the best time to trade out that old battery for a fresh one!

Take care of your tires.

Changing temperatures can lead to changing tire pressure. Keep an eye on your tires and make sure your tire pressure matches the range suggested in your owner’s manual.

Keep your tank full.

A full tank of gas helps to keep moisture from collecting in the fuel lines where it might freeze if the temperature dips too low.

 

These are just a few fast suggestions to help you prep your car for winter this year. For more car care tips and tricks, come see us today here at Wiesner of Huntsville!

How to Jump a Dead Battery

How to Jump a Dead Battery

Even if you have roadside assistance, knowing how to jump a dead battery is vital when you’re on the road. Whether you’re commuting home or heading out on a vacation, waiting for help to arrive is the last thing you want to do. Instead of waiting for roadside assistance to show up, you could jump the dead battery yourself. If you don’t know how, let us here at Wiesner of Huntsville help you out!

  1. Start off by identifying the positive and negative battery terminals and jumper cables. The positive sides are normally red while the negative are usually black.
  2. Once you’ve identified the positive and negatives, it’s time to start connecting cables. Attach the positive end of the jumper cable to the dead battery’s positive terminal. Attach the other end to the live battery’s positive terminal.
  3. Attach one end of the negative cable to the live battery’s negative terminal.
  4. Attach the other end of the negative cable to an unpainted piece of metal near the battery. Jumping posts and engine bolts are good spots.
  5. Make sure everything is secure, then start the car with the live battery.
  6. Let it idle for a few minutes.
  7. Start the car with the dead battery. If it starts, move on to the next step. If it doesn’t, let the car idle for a few more minutes then try again or call for help.
  8. Let both cars idle for a few minutes before disconnecting cables.
  9. Disconnect the cables in the reverse order you attached them.

We here at Wiesner of Huntsville wish you safe travels no matter where you’re headed.

Worried About Pet Safety While Driving? Here’s a Few Tips

Everyone likes to bring their dog along with them in the car, whether they’re going on a road trip or to the convenience store. But people often don’t think much about pet safety while driving – your furry friend could easily get hurt or hurt you in the case of an accident. If you’re wondering how to keep your driving companion safe, we have a few pointers.

pet safety while driving

First of all, if you’re wondering what kind of vehicle is best for someone who likes to bring their pets in the car with them, the answer is that it depends. Typically, you should find a more spacious car, minivan, or SUV with good safety ratings and features, along with cloth seats, as leather upholstery will just get shredded by Fido’s claws. The word ‘spacious’ is relative here, however, depending on whether you’re bringing a Chihuahua or a Mastiff into the car. Always consider your animal’s comfort and make sure they have room to stretch their legs a bit.

It’s a good idea to get your pet some exercise prior to a car ride, too, especially if the animal is particularly nervous or anxious. The positive hormones released by exercise will improve your pet’s mood, and the activity will tire them out and make them less energetic during the actual ride. Some pet stores offer liners and pet barriers specifically made for trips in the car, and it’s recommended that you get your pet some sort of harness or restraint – a large dog could easily become a projectile in the case of an accident.

For longer trips, remember to bring plastic bags and waste scoops, as well as water, food, and a leash. Keep the windows cracked when leaving your pet in the car, and never leave them alone in the car on a hot day. Remembering these tips will keep you and your travel companion happy and healthy. For many, having a pet is like having another child, and any parent wants to ensure their baby grows up safe and secure!

Safe travels from all of us here at Wiesner of Huntsville!