Russ Darrow Automotive | Car Buying Tips

Posted on September 9, 2014

Buying a vehicle is an exciting yet challenging experience. It gives you a sense of independence and security, but can also be stressful if you go in without doing some initial research. If you’re thinking about buying new or used, the following information should make the whole process easier.

New vehicles normally require less maintenance and usually offer a warranty of at least 3 years. Additionally, your state’s lemon laws guarantee compensation if you have persistent problems with a new vehicle. Complimentary roadside assistance is offered with most new vehicles giving you even greater peace of mind, as well as various other types of warranties and incentives.

 

Used vehicles attract many consumers with lower cost and greater selection of models. Buyers purchasing a used vehicle can avoid depreciation costs associated with many new cars.  On average, a new car loses 11% of its true value after leaving the dealership. Certified pre-owned vehicles offer the price and selection of a used vehicle with a more extensive warranty; making it a popular choice for many consumers. Visit your local dealership to determine the type of vehicle that’s right for you, your family, and your budget.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Roadside assistance

Posted on September 4, 2014

If you’ve ever been stranded on the side of the road, you know the importance of roadside assistance. While shopping for coverage, consider plans that cater to your personal needs without accumulating out of pocket expenses. While benefits may vary,   larger companies might offer quicker response times and can offer a greater amount of incentives to attract your business.

Add on plans may require additional cost to consumer’s existing membership. Some policies cover a specific vehicle while others cover the cardholder as well as the vehicle they’re using. Always determine the number of miles allowed for each tow to avoid an unexpected repair bill later.  A few insurance companies treat roadside assistance similar to insurance claims. A frequent number of requests could result in higher premiums so always read the fine print before accepting an agreement.

Stand alone plans are usually offered by auto clubs with benefits catering to individuals as well as families with teen drivers.  Inquire about the cost of a basic membership and the number of people covered by your plan.  The average response times for a call as well as the number of tows allowed are important questions when making a decision.

Overall, roadside assistance can invaluable help in times of need. Carefully consider all available options so you can choose the one that’s right for you.

 

Some dealerships even offer complimentary roadside assistance when buying a new or used vehicle.  Come in today to see what kind of roadside assistance we have to offer. 

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | What You Should Do After An Automobile Accident

Posted on September 2, 2014

So you’re driving down the street with your family and/or friends and suddenly you and another vehicle hit each other and now you are in a state of panic in the driver seat. Here are a few guidelines to help you through with your troubling problem.

 

Stay clam. After an automobile collision, a person can feel up to a varying and multiple amounts of emotions that may affect the way he or she can handle the current situation. It is best to clam yourself down by using whatever methods work best for you such as taking deep breath or counting to some arbitrary number. Once you are in a clam state you are better able to handle the situation.

 

Check for injuries. Depending on the seriousness of the automobile collision, there may be people injured. If it is a minor injury, try to assist the injured person however for more serious injuries, call an ambulance.

 

Call the police. Once the people are safe call the local police and update them with the current facts. Give them facts and not some ambiguous information such as “I wasn’t speeding” and instead respond with a concise answer like “I was driving at 40 miles per hour”.

 

Write everything down. Get the information of anyone directly involved in the accident such as their names, driver license numbers, date of births, addresses. You should also take down the cars’ license number and state that issued the license of the cars involved in the accident as well as the license number and state that issued the license of cars nearby as the police can track them down to use as witnesses.

 

Call your insurance agent. The sooner you call your agent the better it is for you. They will give you information that will help you get over this problem and get you back onto your life.

 

Don’t sign any document that is unfamiliar. Signing something without knowing what it is, is an insanely moronic practice to begin with so it should apply here as well. Even the police explain to you what you are signing, which is usually an automobile collision and also your insurance agent explaining what you are signing as well.

 

Call your lawyer. The sooner you get into contact with your lawyer, the better it is for you. They can clarify any legal ramifications that you may questions about relating to your automobile collision so that you may better understand the current situation that you are in.

 

 

Ask questions. Though the police, your insurance agent and your lawyer may give you information, they will assume that you will know about everything in-between if you don’t ask any questions. Even if you are remotely confused about something it is better to ask now rather than finding out how it can hurt you later.

       

Car Buying Tips | Russ Darrow Automotive Group

Posted on August 28, 2014

Shopping for your next vehicle is and should always be exciting and enjoyable experience. Before you even decide on a vehicle, conduct an honest self evaluation to figure out how much you can afford.  Having a detailed budget allows you to negotiate confidently with your salesperson without going beyond your means. 

As we all know, in the end, it all comes down to money. How much money do you have to spend now and how much money will you have to spend in the future? If you’re struggling to keep up with bills and other monthly payments, now may not be the best time to purchase a new vehicle.  You may want to consider using cash to buy a quality used vehicle or continue saving up for that dream automobile.  Leasing might also be a great option to pursue in this situation.

If you can afford a new vehicle, having a secure job status and limiting other monthly expenses will make the process a whole lot easier.

If you’re financing a vehicle, research your taxes and finance rating through your ZIP code. Create a target for your monthly payment. This should be no more than 20% of your monthly income and should not include gas, insurance or expected maintenance on the vehicle. When setting your loan term, remember that shorter terms usually have higher payments while longer terms may require paying more in interest.  

 

If trading a vehicle, consider the value of your old vehicle as payment towards the cost of the new vehicle. If you’re using a cash down payment, try to put as much down as possible. This will lower the cost of your monthly payment and the loan amount. Following these simple tips will ensure you get the best deal on your next set of wheels, and will help to ensure you will be able to afford the vehicle you have picked out.

       

Buying vs. Leasing | Russ Darrow Automotive Group

Posted on August 28, 2014

If you’re shopping for your next vehicle, you’re probably deciding whether you want to buy or lease. Reasons for buying a new car include lower finance rates and the comfort of being the first owner of the vehicle.  New car buyers tend to have more freedom when choosing luxury and convenience features. For example, they can upgrade from cloth to leather seating and even add a premium entertainment system, while still keeping monthly costs manageable. After completing payments on the vehicle, new car buyers will have something of value that they can either sell for a profit or keep for years to come.

 

Likewise, leasing a vehicle offers substantial benefits.  One of the most attractive benefits is being able to get into a more luxurious vehicle for a lower price. Lessees need not worry about expensive repairs or costly depreciation associated with new car purchases. Once you have kept the car in good condition and obeyed the terms of the lease, you can simply hand over the keys and walk away at the end of your lease. Many lease contracts offer a buyout option allowing you to pay cash for the vehicle or continue making payments until you own it if you decide you do in fact want to keep it. Self-employed individuals can even write off their lease payments as a business expense if it is used for business purposes. 

       

New vs. Used Car Buying | Russ Darrow Automotive Group

Posted on August 28, 2014

Buying a vehicle is an exciting yet challenging experience. It gives you a sense of independence and security, but can also be stressful if you go in without doing some initial research. If you’re thinking about buying new or used, the following information should make the whole process easier.

New vehicles normally require less maintenance and usually offer a warranty of at least 3 years. Additionally, your state’s lemon laws guarantee compensation if you have persistent problems with a new vehicle. Complimentary roadside assistance is offered with most new vehicles giving you even greater peace of mind, as well as various other types of warranties and incentives.

 

Used vehicles attract many consumers with lower cost and greater selection of models. Buyers purchasing a used vehicle can avoid depreciation costs associated with many new cars.  On average, a new car loses 11% of its true value after leaving the dealership. Certified pre-owned vehicles offer the price and selection of a used vehicle with a more extensive warranty; making it a popular choice for many consumers. Visit your local dealership to determine the type of vehicle that’s right for you, your family, and your budget.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Maintaining Roadside Assistance

Posted on August 26, 2014

If you’ve ever been stranded on the side of the road, you know the importance of roadside assistance. While shopping for coverage, consider plans that cater to your personal needs without accumulating out of pocket expenses. While benefits may vary,   larger companies might offer quicker response times and can offer a greater amount of incentives to attract your business.

Add on plans may require additional cost to consumer’s existing membership. Some policies cover a specific vehicle while others cover the cardholder as well as the vehicle they’re using. Always determine the number of miles allowed for each tow to avoid an unexpected repair bill later.  A few insurance companies treat roadside assistance similar to insurance claims. A frequent number of requests could result in higher premiums so always read the fine print before accepting an agreement.

Stand alone plans are usually offered by auto clubs with benefits catering to individuals as well as families with teen drivers.  Inquire about the cost of a basic membership and the number of people covered by your plan.  The average response times for a call as well as the number of tows allowed are important questions when making a decision.

 

Overall, roadside assistance can invaluable help in times of need. Carefully consider all available options so you can choose the one that’s right for you.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Get enough sleep

Posted on August 19, 2014

No matter your skill and experience on the road, proper sleep plays a crucial role in making smart decisions.   A lack of sleep can cause us to function more slowly while chronic sleep loss can result in serious health problems.  

When behind the wheel, falling asleep for just a few seconds is basically the same as driving  unconscious.    Even if you remain awake, drowsiness decreases reaction time and delays your ability to process critical information. If you’re having  trouble keeping your eyes open or yawn repeatedly, quickly find a safe place to pull over and take a nap.  Getting  a good night’s sleep is essential for adequate driver performance. During long road trips, take breaks as needed. Driving alert increases your chances of getting there safely.

Driving with someone who can take over when you’re tired increases comfort and convenience when on the road.  Be sure to consider your regular sleep patterns as well. Driving at times when you’re usually asleep may have an adverse effect on your driving performance. Avoid alcohol and certain medications as they impair your judgment.

 

No matter where the road takes you, getting enough sleep is an essential part of getting there safely!

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Nitrogen Filled Tires

Posted on August 12, 2014

Getting your tires filled with nitrogen can have many distinct advantages such as improved handling, tire life, and even improved fuel efficiency.  Nitrogen’s molecular composition provides a more stable tire pressure than regular air.. Being less susceptible to temperature fluctuations, nitrogen inflated tires also generate less heat, providing optimal performance for drivers and passengers alike.  Since nitrogen tends to leak slower than air, drivers can spend less time checking their tires and more time on the road. Come into our state of the art service center and let our certified and trained service technicians fill your tires with nitrogen so you can enjoy a smoother, more efficient ride!

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Active Cornering Headlights

Posted on July 15, 2014

In today's modern vehicles, active cornering headlights provide convenience and safety for drivers and passengers alike.  Allowing headlights to follow the movements of the steering wheel give occupants a better view of the road, and what lies ahead.

 

Active cornering headlights drastically improve road illumination, giving drivers a greater field of vision. Compared to traditional systems, active headlamps allow your eyes to follow the bend more closely.  Drivers can easily adjust their driving to suit road conditions and be better prepared in emergency situations. To ensure adequate light distribution, headlights continuously adapt to vehicle speed whether you’re in high beam or low beam mode.  Road speed and steering angle sensors communicate with the vehicle’s network to ensure optimal performance and efficiency.  Likewise, Dynamic range adjustment prevents blinding of oncoming drivers. 

 

 

Advanced sensors detect minute movements and can immediately adjust light intensity.  With active cornering headlights you can drive more confidently during inclement weather and periods of low visibility.  Stop your local dealer to learn more about Active Cornering headlights and other exciting options available for your vehicle. 

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Benefits of Rear View Cameras

Posted on July 15, 2014

Today rear-view cameras are providing benefits to many drivers and their passengers. Cameras are integrated into the technology packages found on many vehicles, but can be purchased as an aftermarket accessory or package. Rear view cameras produce a wider field of vision than conventional rear view mirrors.  In large vehicles such as SUVs, blind spots can range as far as 20 feet behind the vehicle. Rear-view cameras aid in eliminating dangerous blind spots, offering a more pleasant and safe driving experience.  These cameras can also provide an added layer of confidence when reversing around small children and household pets. 

 

Rear view cameras also provide exceptional views of your surroundings, especially while parallel parking. You can accurately determine the position of other vehicles, signs, people and of course, the curb.  Drivers towing their boats and trailers can hook up much easier; avoiding costly repairs to either of their vehicles 

 

Whether you’re interested in a pre-installed or aftermarket system, here are a few things you should consider.  A good camera is not only weather resistant but also offers a wide viewing angle and sharp focal length.  Video quality should be clear providing excellent resolution and detail.  Look for convenience features such as remote controls and auxiliary mounting racks that allow you to easily customize the camera’s position. Choosing a manufacturer that offers a good warranty and knowledgeable support service will ensure that you get the most out of your device. 

 

 

Stop by your local dealer today to find the package that’s right for you.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Car Seat Safety

Posted on July 15, 2014

When it comes to children’s safety, it is essential that you check your car’s safety seat thoroughly before each drive. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration car seats and booster seats have been very effective in reducing spinal and other internal injuries. Compared to lap and shoulder belts, child seats correctly position young children so that they can be properly secured in a collision.

Lap and shoulder belts are designed with adult safety in mind. Because of the difference in body structure, children can become seriously injured when using these devices. Because of their smaller stature, lap and shoulder belts rest on their neck and abdomen. When the seat belt tightens, serious injuries occur in these areas.

Protect your child using a properly harnessed car seat, and always make sure the car seat is properly installed. Infants weighing 20 pounds or less can travel in a rear facing infant seat. Test the straps for a secure fit. If you can move any part of the assembly more than an inch, the straps need to be pulled tighter.  For a more comfortable fit, consider using the LATCH mechanism offered in most new vehicles. LATCH systems were created by manufacturers to aid the installation of many child carriers.

Convertible seats are designed for infants and toddlers alike and can be modified as your child grows.  This gives you the benefit of having to buy only one seat.  Any child weighing less than 20 pounds must sit facing the rear seat. Once over 20 pounds, the child can now sit facing the front.

 

Talk with certified child passenger safety technicians for the best methods on securing your child’s car seat and for information regarding child car safety products.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Complying with safety recalls

Posted on July 15, 2014

If your vehicle has been involved in a recall, try to bring it in for the required service as soon as possible. Vehicles that are recalled pose a potential safety risk to all consumers, their families and others on the road.

 Automakers as well as safety agencies issue recalls based on recurring events or issues with a certain make and model.  Whether you own a new or used vehicle, you can use several methods to determine if a recall has been issued.

The National Travel Highway Safety Administration keeps records of every recall. Using their website owners can if their vehicle has been recalled. Owners can also report potential safety issues pertaining to their vehicle. Additionally, some reputable sourcesallow you to check for technical service bulletins for your vehicle. These consist of minor repairs that were not serious enough to issue a full recall.  

Automakers also keep detailed records of their vehicles that have been recalled. Dealerships constantly update these records with individual vehicles that have been serviced under the recall. Sometimes, the easiest way to find out if a vehicle has been recalled is by contacting the automaker directly. All you is need is the vehicle’s identification number and a description of the problem. Some automakers even offer an online VIN check for their vehicles.

 

Additional third party companies such as Carfax constantly update their databases based on a vehicle’s VIN.  If you receive a recall letter from your automaker, check your local dealership to see if they are qualified to perform the repairs. Under a recall, all work is free of charge to the consumer. Stop by your local dealership to see if there any recalls on your vehicle.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Crash test ratings

Posted on July 15, 2014

Before deciding on a vehicle, you should look into the vehicles crash test ratings.  Every year, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety as well as the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration perform extensive testing on popular passenger vehicles.  

Founded by auto insurance companies, The Institute uses color coding and quantitative scale of Good, Acceptable, Marginal and Poor when rating vehicles. The National Traffic Highway Safety Administration uses a five star system in which vehicles are rated with between 1 and 5 stars.   Both agencies subject vehicles to a series of front, side and rear crash tests, examining how well the vehicle protects its occupants. Similarly, roof strength tests determine the safety of vehicles during a rollover.

As automotive technology advances, vehicles tend to become safer for passengers and pedestrians.  But, be conscious about the type of vehicles you wish to compare. Take note of the disclaimers available on crash test reports.  Only compare vehicles of the same class and style. They must also have been subjected to the same type of tests during a reasonable period of time. Family sedans and SUVs tend to fare better than roadster and convertibles in side crash tests.

 

 

The agencies provide crash test results on their respective websites making them readily available to the public. So be sure to Carefully consider crash test reports as well as consumer reviews before deciding on your next vehicle vehicle.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Donít text while driving

Posted on July 15, 2014

Texting while driving puts you and others in serious danger. Many experts consider texting and driving to be as dangerous or more dangerous than drunk driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that were 5,800 people were killed due to distracted drivers in 2008. Similarly, the American Automobile Association report that 50% of teens admit to texting while driving.  As clearly seen from the statistics, texting and driving can cost more than just your license; it can cost you your life. 

When you text and drive, you spend an average of 5 seconds looking at your cell phone instead of the road. Texting while going 55 miles per hour is the same as driving the length of a football field without looking.

While laws vary from state to state, there are 39 states that prohibit all drivers from text messaging.  If you need to send an important message, consider pulling off the road or have a responsible passenger send the message for you. It might seem like you’re saving time when texting and driving, but your chances of an accident will increase exponentially.

 

Be smart and carefully consider your driving decisions. It only takes one simple mistake to cause a major catastrophe.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Dual Stage 'smart' airbags

Posted on July 15, 2014

Providing advanced vehicle safety, dual stage or “smart” airbags provide exceptional protection for drivers and passengers alike.

 

‘Smart’ airbags adjust their deployment speed depending on the force of the crash and the size of occupants in the vehicle.  In a minor collision, airbags will deploy with the right amount of force to simply slow the occupant's motion. During a severe impact, airbags deploy at much higher speeds; keeping drivers safely inside the vehicle while limiting body contact inside the cabin.

 

A system of sensors determines the size and stature of the individual in each seat.  Sophisticated computer technology helps the vehicle determine if a child or adult is sitting in a specific area and adjust the force and speed of the airbag based on individual needs. If the seat is vacant, the airbag will not deploy.

 

Compared to traditional airbags, which usually deploy around 200 miles per hour, dual stage airbags offer impressive comfort and well as peace of mind. They reduce the chance of death and serious injury    that can be sustained by older airbag designs.  Some manufacturers have even improved the concept of 'smart' airbags by offering dual depth airbags. To ensure that the airbag properly cushions the vehicle's occupants, dual depth airbags can deploy at different sizes, offering optimal protection at all times. 

 

 

So if safety and peace of mind are important to you, take some time to research different vehicles and that offer dual stage 'smart' airbags or come in today to learn more.

       

Russ Darrow Automotive Tips | Frame strength

Posted on July 15, 2014

Frame strength is essential to vehicle safety.   As the main structure of a vehicle’s chassis, all other components connect directly or indirectly to the frame.

Today most passenger cars use unibody construction. This results in a lightweight and fuel efficient vehicle. Normally made of aluminum, stiff unibody frames allow for more responsive handling as the frame and chassis are essentially one piece. During a collision, frames absorb energy through the use of crumple zones.  These crumples reduce the chance of injury and provide valuable protection to the vehicle’s occupants.  Because of their intricate design unibody frames may experience extensive damage during serious collision. Conduct extensive research when buying a used unibody vehicle. If the vehicle has been in an accident, have a certified professional examine the repairs.  A misaligned frame cannot offer optimal protection during a collision.

 

Body on frame construction is mainly found on pickup trucks and some SUVs.   By mounting a separate body on a rigid frame, a vehicle can perform heavy duty work without added stress on the vehicle’s chassis.  These vehicles are typically used for hauling, towing and off road excursions. Body on frame vehicles can be easier modified for commercial use and normally easier to repair after an accident.

 

 

Whether you choose to buy a unibody or body on frame vehicle, a strong frame provides piece of mind and safety for you and your family.   

       
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