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Monthly archives for December, 2010

Frequency Of Oil Changes

Is it possible that changing your oil every, 3,000 miles could be an idea of the past? The technology of automotive oil has made vast improvements since the days when this rule first came about. However, there is still great benefit to frequent oil changes. Almost all newer vehicles could safely travel more than the recommended 3,000 mile mark before needing an oil change. It is possible that we could be wasting our money to keep up with a maintenance standard set for vehicle’s that are decades old.

You may want to consult your local Jeep dealer to find out just what is recommended for your new Jeep vehicle. They will be able to accurately tell you what type of maintenance will keep your engine running like new. They will also be able to tell you how frequently it is needed to have your oil changed.

The fact is that this 3,000 mile mark became standard practice several years ago, decades ago. We, as vehicle owners, have clung to that maintenance requirement. Having your oil changed is probably the easiest of all vehicle maintenance to perform. Some can quickly change their oil in the comforts of their own garage. However, for the less automotive savvy you can have your oil changed without even getting out of your car. Most drivers feel like having their oil changed fulfills the requirement have regular maintenance performed and is a great marker of actively taking control of the health of their vehicle. However, there is much more to keeping a vehicle healthy and well maintained.

Reference your vehicles’ owner’s manual for a complete guide to your maintenance plan. You can have your oil changed, and other vehicle maintenance, performed at your local St. Louis MO Jeep dealer.

Avoid Buying Pitfalls 2

Another common consumer mistake is focusing solely on a monthly payment amount, rather than looking at the complete financial picture. If you look just at the monthly payment you fail to recognize the length of the loan, the interest rate of the loan, and the potential value of the vehicle when it is paid off. Your goal should be to have a short auto loan with low monthly payments and a low interest rate. This will allow you to pay off the loan quickly and the vehicle will still have ample value when you’re ready to sell or trade in.

Many dealers are able to begin offering incentives and deals. However, the frequencies of these deals are not as they were before the crash of the economy. The deals are usually a marketing tactic used to get customers into the dealership. If you are interested in the current deal or incentive you should still consider looking at other vehicles before you sign on the line for the hot new deal. You may find that another vehicle may fit your needs more accurately or that a different financing plan would work better for you.

Whether you’re at the Jeep dealer for the newest deal or incentive, or are there seeking a new or used vehicle you should consider your financing before you ever begin shopping. This will streamline your vehicle shopping. Failing to consider your financing before purchasing a vehicle is a common way people find themselves upside down on a loan or unable to make their vehicle loan payments. It’s best to let you financing steer your vehicle shopping course. Staying within your shopping budget will set you up for a successful buying experience.

Avoid Buying Pitfalls 1

There are some mistakes commonly made by car shoppers that lead to a negative buying experience.  Many people cringe at the thought of visiting a car lot, engaging in negotiations, or negotiating vehicle financing. However, purchasing a new or used car, truck, or Jeep can be a very positive and rewarding experience.

Many people choose a vehicle model before applying for financing or ever visiting the lot. As a result they choose to conform their financing to their potential purchase and limit their vehicle options. By taking the time to research a few different models within your budget you will actively create a more positive experience.

Skipping the test drive should just not be an option. You may be surprised to know that some buyers purchase a vehicle having never driven the car, truck, or Jeep. This is very risky. The purpose of the test drive is to be sure the vehicle is, not only, working properly, but also that it is a good physical fit for you. Failing to test drive a vehicle is an excellent way to end up with a vehicle that is awkward for you to drive.

When negotiating the price of the deal you may find it more effective to know what the dealership paid for the vehicle. Of course a dealer will need to make money off of the deal, but you don’t need to pay top dollar for it. Having this knowledge will give you great negotiating power.

Make your next vehicle purchase an easy success and shop a Jeep dealer located near St. Louis Missouri. The All Star Dodge and Jeep dealer has a number of affordable vehicles that will meet all of your transportation needs.

Test Drive Is Pertinent

There are several things you will need to be paying attention to when you test drive the newest Dodge Ram. Aside from all of the latest features you will need to become familiar with the entire vehicle, inside and out. The test drive should be, well, a test. It should be your own personal test of the vehicle and how it works with you. It is recommended that you take the test drive very seriously and perform it with minimum distraction.

If possible, drive the vehicle on the highway and in the city. Make note of the acceleration during different circumstances. The Dodge Ram should have ample acceleration to safely merge onto the highway. In addition, it should have enough power to adequately accelerate uphill and on rough terrain. Just as you check the acceleration you should also check the braking. The brakes should feel smooth and effective with each braking circumstance. Being caught in stop and go traffic is never fun, but your vehicle should not be jerky during the acceleration or braking.

Also, pay close attention to the way the truck handles. The steering should be tight and responsive. If it seems like you can move the steering wheel a significant amount and have no response from the wheels, then there is an issue with the steering that needs to be addressed. Just because you’re looking to purchase a truck does not mean you will need to sacrifice when it comes steering or handling. The truck should feel as nimble as possible. However, you will need to take into consideration the fact that it is a truck and it should not handle like a small sedan vehicle.

Specific Pickup Safety Features

Pickup trucks are popular models for a number of reasons. They are family friendly and come with great capabilities, which can transform your truck into a towing and hauling machine. There are so many things to consider when you’re shopping for a new or used Dodge Ram truck. As with any model you will need to consider the capabilities of the vehicle to be sure it is compatible with your needs. Also, it will need to be within your price range and have the top of the line safety features. Some believe when you purchase a pickup truck you make sacrifices when it comes to the functionality and safety. However, this is far from the truth, especially considering all of the latest and safety innovations from our manufacturers.

One of the popular safety features you may want in your Dodge Ram truck is side impact protection. Many newer trucks come available with side curtain airbags. These airbags will deploy if the vehicle is involved in a side impact collision or a rollover incident. They are designed to protect your head during these collision circumstances. Many 4WD trucks will give the driver the option to turn this feature off or make the sensor less sensitive. This would be useful during off roading adventures.

Truck buyers also look for trailer sway control. This is just another stability control feature specific for hauling. Usually you will have trailer sway control in trucks that also have vehicle stability control. When towing a trailer you may experience sway. The sway of a trailer can actually cause the rear of the vehicle to sway from side to side. The trailer sway control will work by adjusting the brake or throttle in order to minimize and control the sway.

Snowy Weather = Out Of Control Truck

The winter season can bring with it some scary driving weather. Some dread the thought of navigating roadways which are covered in snow, let alone ice. In fact, some drivers downright refuse to go out unless the weather is completely in their favor. However, for others there just isn’t the option to stay inside on snowy days and they are forced to try and safely navigate the terrain. Driving in such weather can be particularly difficult for those driving sports cars, vehicles with rear wheel drive, or pickup trucks. Each of these vehicle types is notorious for slipping and sliding in adverse weather conditions. However, for those driving a pickup truck, such as a Dodge Ram, there are certain things you can do to prevent your truck from slipping and sliding and work to maintain constant traction and, ultimately, control of the vehicle.

It is helpful to weigh down the back of the truck. Many truck owners turn to a traditional sand bag this time of year. Any low profile heavy object would work. However, you want to make sure the objects are secured in place, as object moving around the bed of the truck would be counterproductive to maintaining control.

You will have to modify some of your driving style to accommodate for the winter weather. Give yourself some extra time to arrive at your destination. You will need more stopping time and will need to travel at a slower pace in order to better maintain control of the truck. If you ever feel like you simply cannot maintain control of the truck, then it may be best to stay put and wait out the storm.

Owner Driven Efficiency Tactics

When you think of a fuel efficient vehicle you probably think of a smaller, more compact sedan. Your first thought probably wouldn’t be that of a larger pickup truck. It has always been expected for trucks to be some of the least efficient within the auto industry. However efficiency technology has shown such vast improvements and is finally stretching to the pickup trucks of the auto industry. Even though they may not be completely up to the efficiency standards we would like, they are much more efficient than previous model years.

Though driving a truck may not be the most efficient way to travel, there are steps you can take to increase the efficiency of your truck, such as the Dodge Ram. To begin, remove all unnecessary objects from your truck. Having the interior of your truck looking as close to the day you bought it should be an ongoing goal for a number of reasons. It will work to retain the value of your truck as well as, improve its overall efficiency.

Just as with the interior, unload and get rid of any unnecessary weight in the bed of the truck. Any added weight will weigh down the vehicle and force the engine to work harder to propel the truck. As a result your overall efficiency will suffer. By removing the items from the interior and bed of the truck you can begin actively improving your efficiency.

Keep up with the maintenance schedule set forth for your Dodge Ram. Although they may not always seem needed or important, each regularly scheduled maintenance appointment will keep your truck in top working condition. This will better ensure you’re engine is running at full efficiency potential.

Insurance Coverage For Auto Theft

There are so many high tech security measures in today’s vehicles it’s hard to imagine how any of them could be stolen. However, automotive theft is still going on. Just because a vehicle is older does not mean it’s safer either. Any and all vehicles are subject to theft. It is important to know that fact when you are considering your auto insurance. Having enough coverage at a time when you need it most is imperative. Having your vehicle stolen is always a bad situation to be in. However, having inadequate coverage at that time is even worse.

Yes your new Dodge Ram is chalk full of safety and security measures, but it is not a substitute for common sense. Make it a point to learn how to use all of the safety features on your vehicle. If you are not using the safety features, they are of no use and will not protect you when you need it most. Before you leave the dealer make sure you know how to use all of the features on your vehicle, paying particular attention to the safety and security features.

As previously mentioned, older vehicles are not exempt from being stolen. Older vehicles are usually stolen for their parts. Drivers of older vehicles are also more lax about locking the doors or removing the keys. It is important to keep your safety habits, no matter what age your vehicle.
Make sure your insurance coverage is enough for your needs. Call your insurance provider and speak with them about what the coverage would look like if your vehicle were stolen. If you are unhappy with the coverage consider changing it immediately.

Refinancing Makes Sense

Many people struggle to obtain vehicle financing in these economic times. Yes our economy has been improving. However, lending is still much tighter than it was before the recent crash of the economy. As a result many car buyers are changing the way they are purchasing. Some are waiting much longer to purchase in order to be able to make a larger down payment. Some are looking to lease rather than purchase. Some that would normally buy a new vehicle are now purchasing a used or certified pre owned vehicle in order to save money.

It was once true that if you wanted to purchase a vehicle, you simply applied for financing, was approved, and signed the deal. It is now much more difficult to become approved for such loans. Lenders have been limited to giving out loans to those with a pristine credit history. Unfortunately for some, this simply leaves either no financing, or loans with significantly higher interest rates than preferred.

Accepting a loan with a high interest rate does not mean you’re stuck with that loan for the duration of the lending terms. There are refinancing options for auto loans, just like those for a home loan. Choosing to refinance your auto loan is quite similar to applying for the original loan. You will need to do a little research to determine which lender will offer you the best deal. You will probably find that the Dodge dealer in which you obtained the original loan may have the best refinancing plan. A refinanced auto loan should save you money through lowering your interested rate, reducing the overall loan amount, or reducing the length of the loan.

New Marketing Strategies

As the economic industry, including the automotive industry, continues to recover many are finding increased value in strategic marketing efforts. For instance, Dodge is planning a big marketing push in early 2011. This new marketing strategy is set to include special advertising during the 2011 Super Bowl, which will be held on February 6. A select number of Dodge vehicles continue to show selling success. However, the CEO, Ralph Gilles would like to see sales improvements across the model board.

“I am grateful for your orders on Durango and Charger. However, we could use some extra love on Caravan, Avenger and mostly the Journey,” Gilles wrote in an e-mail obtained by Automotive News.

“Our plan effectively relaunches these vehicles and will get curious shoppers back in your showrooms,” Gilles said.

The 2011 year will bring six new revamped Dodge models. This is the biggest jump for all of the Chrysler brands. Some of the revamped models will include a newer Dodge Durango SUV, re-engineered versions of the Dodge Charger and Challenger, and modified versions of the Dodge Grand Caravan, Dodge Avenger, and the Journey. Keep a close eye on your local Dodge dealer regarding the arrival of the newest versions of these vehicles.

Through the strategic marketing Dodge plans are to catapult the new models into a realm of super success. As previously mentioned the Dodge Charger and Durango have a bit of a jump on the other new models. Hopefully the strategic marketing efforts by Dodge will bring the Challenger, Caravan, Avenger, and Journey up to speed in the beginning of the year. All of the newest versions of these models should be in Dodge dealers across the nation by the close of 2010.