Category Archives: Car Tips

Spring Car Cleaning Tips

Spring Car Cleaning Tips

Getting behind the wheel of a clean car is such an enjoyable feeling that we encourage all drivers to clean their vehicles constantly. The transition from winter to spring represents a fantastic opportunity to do just that! We have some useful spring car cleaning tips to help you enjoy the warm spring weather.

 

  • Exterior – Giving the exterior of your vehicle a good wash is a great way to remove salt, grime, and other debris while protecting the paint. It may be worthwhile to remove the hubcaps to get to the wheel wells too. Afterward, consider waxing your vehicle to leave it shining brightly in the sunlight for weeks to come.
  • Interior – Take to the upholstery with a damp towel to remove any dirt that’s found its way into the seats. It wouldn’t hurt to vacuum thoroughly either. Invest in some specialized leather cleaner if your car has leather seats to leave a shine you’ll enjoy every time you get behind the wheel.
  • Under the Hood – Making sure there’s nothing odd stuck under the hood is another part of spring car cleaning. Keep an eye out for anything that looks abnormal and check the belts and hoses while you’re at it. Clean the battery connections if possible.

 

If you’d rather just get a new car instead of cleaning your old one, feel free to stop by and see us here at Nick Nicholas Ford. We’ll be happy to help you find your next dream car.

This Year, Celebrate Fall Car Care Month in Preparation of Winter

family dog fall - Fall Car Care Month

October brings jack-o-lanterns, falling leaves, cozy sweaters (for most of the country), and much more – including the perfect weather to focus on your car. In fact, October is Fall Car Care Month, a time designed to “bring attention to the importance of car care and preventative maintenance” by the Car Care Council.

So button up your flannel, put on your jeans, and park your car in the driveway. Here are various ways you can perform routine maintenance on your car at home, just in time for fall:

  • Check your tire pressure and tread, and depending on how snowy your area gets, consider switching to winter tires.
  • If it’s time to get your oil changed; do it! If you’re in between changes, consider making sure your oil is clean.
  • While you’re at it, check on your antifreeze. This is the time of the year when you will need it most.
  • Make sure that you have plenty of windshield wiper fluid to wipe away rain, leaves, and other fall debris.
  • Lastly, stock your car with an ice scraper, a shovel, and perhaps even an extra winter hat, just in case (though it’s not likely that you’ll need it, but it could happen!).

For more car care tips or to find out more about Fall Car Care Month, contact us or visit us anytime at Nick Nicholas Ford.

Hurricane Safety Tips

hurricane safety tips flood

Hurricanes can cause lasting, devastating damage to our coastal region. We want to be sure that you’re staying safe during these times with some facts and instructions.

Hazardous Activity

  • Flooding – with so much additional rain coming from these storms, you need to be aware of flooding hazards. It can happen quickly as the storms approach land, and can affect those living even hundreds of miles from the coast.
  • Rip Currents – added pressures, fronts and winds make the tides pull stronger. Watch out for warnings in weather alerts, as well as posted signs on the beaches.
  • Wind – it’s no news that hurricanes are made up of high-powered weather, and winds can damage buildings, trees and other property.

Tips

  • Cover windows – install storm windows on your home to reduce potential breakage
  • Listen to the news – be prepared to respond to officials. If ordered to evacuate, be ready to do so. They will not order you to leave unless the hurricane proposes a huge threat. If it does, it’s in your best interest to listen.

If there’s no call for evacuation, there are still some steps you can take in your home when the storm hits. Stay away from all windows and remain nearest to the middle of the building as you can. Stay calm throughout, and remember these hurricane safety tips.

Check Out These Tricks to Keep Your Car Cool During the Summer Months

You know that stuffy, suffocating feeling inside your car, whenever you return to it after a long day of work, a few hours at the mall, or even a quick trip into the store? The summer months can truly make your car seem unbearable. If there’s anything that you can do to keep your car cool, you should take advantage of the options.

Ford Explorer - Tricks to Keep Your Car Cool

Here are some tips and tricks to keep your car cool:

  • Get a sunshade or visor, and always use it when you leave the car. You will be shocked by how much of a difference it makes.
  • Try to park in a garage or at least under the shade of a tree. The tiniest bit of shade will reduce some of the heat.
  • If you’re comfortable with it, leave your car with the windows cracked – just a tiny bit. The car will not be as stuffy when you return.
  • Lastly, if leather seats or a leather steering wheel are burning you, place a blanket or towel over them while you are gone. They won’t be as hot!

For more ideas, or to spend your season with a new set of wheels, contact us or visit us anytime at Nick Nicholas Ford.

Valentine’s Day Automotive Ideas: For Car Lovers

Valentine's Day

Struggling to find something romantic for a car lover on Valentine’s Day? While buying a new car might be the ultimate statement, there are some other, less expensive, items and ideas you can do for the special holiday. Read on to discover Valentine’s Day automotive ideas.

First on our list is a Bluetooth Headset and adaptor. According to Safetlite, this is great for not only car lovers, but also people who spend a lot of time driving. This system lets you keep both hands on the wheel while talking on the phone, and only comes standard on select new cars.

Maintenance items are another great gift. Consider buying tools as well as glass cleaners, fluids, wipers, tires, or simply car wash supplies.

Other gift ideas include:

  • Satellite Radio
  • Remote Car Starter
  • A Day at the Track
  • Smart Driving Assist

Still not finding something that’s right for Valentine’s Day? Sometimes simply spending time with someone is a great gift. Consider taking a road trip, whether it is just for a day or a trip around the region.

What is E85?

Maybe you’ve seen the bright yellow handles at the gas station, but what is E85 Ethanol Flex Fuel?

What is E85

Ethanol is an alcohol-based fuel and is made from starch crops. In America, that usually means corn. Believe it or not, corn contains an enormous amount of energy. According to HowStuffWorks, only one acre of corn can produce 330 gallons of ethanol. To make E85, the stuff that comes out of the yellow handle pumps at the gas station, manufacturers combine 85 parts ethanol with 15 parts gasoline.

The benefits of E85 are numerous. First of all, it uses less oil, which stretches the overall oil supply and also helps make the US slightly more oil-independent. E85 produces emissions that contain less carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. Finally, ethanol is non-toxic and biodegradable.

A number of Ford fleet vehicles are capable of running on E85. Check them out here! Interestingly, Ford’s interest in ethanol goes way back. Henry Ford built a Model T to run on the stuff even before WWI.

For more information about E85, visit us today at Nick Nicholas Ford and we’d be happy to answer any of your questions.

Manual vs. Automatic Transmissions

When it comes to the debate on manual vs. automatic transmissions, the right answer is different for every driver and depends on a variety of factors. Here are some of the pros and cons of each.

Manual transmissions, also known as the dreaded stick shift, have more benefits than you might think. For one, manuals are inherently more fuel-efficient than automatics. And that’s not the only way you’ll save with a manual—they also have lower sticker prices! Manual transmissions are ideal for driving enthusiasts, as they offer more excitement and control than automatics.Manual vs. Automatic Transmissions

On the downside, driving a manual does require extra learning that driving an automatic doesn’t. And your pool of choices is much smaller, since manual transmissions aren’t available in the majority of cars now.

Automatics, on the other hand, have the benefit of shifting the gears themselves, so you have to worry a lot less about stalling and which gear to shift into. Driving an automatic is more expensive, but it might be worth it if you don’t have a way to learn to drive stick. And you have a lot more options—just about every car has a standard or optional automatic transmission.

At Nick Nicholas Ford, we offer new and used vehicles with either manual or automatic transmissions. For more information, don’t hesitate to contact us today! We’d be glad to help you.

New Ford Smartwatch Apps are Making Life Easier

Earlier this month Ford announced new Ford Smartwatch apps for use on the Apple Smartwatch and Android Wear devices. These apps would enable drivers of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles to check on various factors regarding their car’s status, including battery life and driving scores.

Ford Smartwatch Apps

By downloading an update of the MyFord Mobile app from the App Store of Google Play, you gain access to unique apps designed for the Smartwatch and Wear. The apps are fit to the small screen you’re using whether you have a round or square watch, and from here you have easy access to your car.

You can remotely lock or unlock your doors with the MyFord Mobile app and get directions back to your car. You can also see how much battery your car has used, get notifications when your battery has finished charging, and get a report on how much of your battery you used on your last trip.

These apps have already been immensely helpful in easing use of electric vehicles for drivers, and making them available for Wear and Smartwatch users will make owning a Ford EV simpler than ever.

For more information on this new Ford technology, visit us today at Nick Nicholas Ford!

Should I Buy 2WD or 4WD? Some Helpful Tips To Answer The Question

Black, red, yellow or blue; Car or truck; Manual or automatic; Powerful or efficient; the decisions you have to make when you decide to buy a new vehicle can be overwhelming. Yet another important choice, though, is “Should I buy 2WD or 4WD?

In a FWD vehicle, the front wheels have to pull the weight of the entire vehicle. Likewise, a RWD vehicle has to push the weight of the entire vehicle.

This isn’t really an issue until you get challenging road conditions.

Should I Buy 2WD or 4WD

In the rain, mud, snow, ice, a 2WD vehicle can seem inferior to a 4WD vehicle. A 4WD vehicle is both pushing with the rear wheels and pulling with the front wheels at the same time, distributing the weight of the vehicle amongst four wheels instead of two. This creates a very distinct advantage in handling in suboptimum road conditions.

That is basically what the question “Should I buy 2WD or 4WD?” boils down to. Do you value the confidence and added safety that comes from improved handling? If so, go with a 4WD vehicle. If you’ve owned a 2WD vehicle and never felt like it was an issue, then perhaps a 2WD vehicle will satisfy you.

For more information and car tips, see us today here at Nick Nicholas Ford in Inverness, Florida.

Frequently Asked Tire Questions, Answered by Nick Nicholas Ford

A good set of tires are imperative to a safe ride. When you drive on old, worn-out tires, you endanger your life and the lives of other drivers around you. Old tires can also greatly affect fuel economy, meaning you end up burning more gas than you otherwise might. Don’t worry though; here at Nick Nicholas Ford, our experts can help your tires last longer! Read on for the answers to your most frequent tire-related questions.

Frequently Asked Tire Questions

When Should I Change My Tires?

Your tires should last a minimum of five years, up to a maximum of 10 years, according to Michelin. After five years of use, you should have a trained professional inspect your tires at least once every year. If you or your mechanic spots any signs of wear, it might be time to start thinking about replacing your tires.

How Often Should I Rotate My Tires?

A good rule of thumb is to rotate your tires whenever you have your oil changed. Rotating your tires is important to their longevity—the front and rear axles and the left and right side of your vehicle wear your tires down differently, so if you rotate them you can make sure they are wearing evenly.

How Do I Check My Tire Tread?

According to GoodYear, Your tires need replacing when their tread depth is less than 2/32”. In order to check your tire tread, grab a penny and stick it in the tire groove with Lincoln’s head facing upside-down (don’t worry, you won’t hurt him). If you can see Lincoln’s entire head, it’s time to replace your tires.

Why is it Important to Keep My Tires Properly Inflated?

There’s a reason why your tires have an optimal inflation level. Properly inflated tires have a longer life span, and will cost you less money in the long run. Additionally, you tend to burn more fuel when driving on underinflated tires, so by keeping them properly inflated, you’ll also save money at the pump. Finally, under- or over-inflated tires wear unevenly, so you might end up needing to replace them sooner.

 

For more answers to your service questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us here at Nick Nicholas Ford and we’d be glad to help you.