Leasing or buying - Which option is better for you?

Posted on May 12, 2016

Over the past few years, the popularity of car leasing has soared. When you compare leasing with buying a car and suffering the humongous monthly installment fees, leasing provides a better and more viable financial option.

'Auto Leasing Defined'

You would "lease" a car by paying for the costs by which the vehicle depreciates in value. You can calculate depreciation costs by subtracting the car's value by the time that the lease ends, from its original value. There are cars which depreciate more than other brands. The rule of thumb is, the smaller the amount that your car depreciates, the lesser the costs to lease.


Once you decide to go for leasing over buying a vehicle, you may choose the one with the least depreciation value.


If you decide to go for this option, you need to learn about "lease term". This is the number of months that the vehicle is leased. Typically, leases last for 24, 36 or 48 months, depending on your contract.


'Leasing or buying: Which option is kinder to your pocket?'


-Automobile leasing requires you to have a good credit, so if your credit score is low, it is better to go for buying. You may even be disapproved for a lease if your credit history is not good. Or, at the very least, you will be required to pay higher monthly dues.

'Car Leasing Tips'


-You will find out that most luxury cars have the lowest depreciation values. 

-Leasing a car may put a big dent in yur budget when it comes to car maintenance. You need to make sure that you are a "car-friendly" user when you opt to go for auto leasing.


-Definitely go for leasing if you are the type who wants to own the latest cars in the market. In the long run, leasing will be a better option for you as compared to buying the latest car model then trading in or selling the old one that you have.



Russ Darrow Group Opens Nissan and Volkswagen Dealership in Sheboygan

Posted on April 29, 2016

The Russ Darrow Group is pleased to announce the acquisition of the Motorville Nissan and Volkswagen dealership in Sheboygan – the company’s first dealership in the city. Russ Darrow will be relocating inventory to the all-new Russ Darrow Nissan of Sheboygan and Russ Darrow Volkswagen of Sheboygan, located at 5515 Racetrack Road.

The new store will include two separate Nissan and Volkswagen showrooms in addition to a large selection of new and pre-owned vehicles from a variety of makes and models. An additional 1,000+ vehicles are available within the Russ Darrow Group system and can be acquired to meet a customer’s specific needs. Customer comfort and amenities to enhance the car buying experience include free Wi-Fi, televisions, and a lounge.

“This addition will be our second Nissan dealership and our very first Volkswagen dealership,” said Mike Darrow, President of the Russ Darrow Group. “We are looking forward to serving Sheboygan and the surrounding communities by providing great customer service and tremendous value through our Live Market pricing, Russ Darrow Rewards loyalty program, and our exclusive refinancing program with autorefinow.com.”

“To support the efforts at the new dealership, we are seeking new employees for the position of sales and service technicians. Anyone that is interested in applying is encouraged to contact chris.olson@russdarrow.com.”

Russ Darrow Nissan of Sheboygan will also feature a full-service maintenance and repair department for all makes and models, a parts and accessories department, plus express service with 30 minutes or less oil changes.  John Domask will serve as the dealership’s General Manager.

“We are a family-owned business in Wisconsin for 51 years and we’re excited to be given the opportunity to join the other well respected employers in the area, such as Kohler Company, Johnsonville Sausage, Acuity, and many others, to not only employ and serve local residents, but also support Sheboygan in philanthropic endeavors and civic involvement,” said Darrow.

Russ Darrow Group, headquartered in Menomonee Falls, recently celebrated its 50th year in business and is Wisconsin’s all-time volume auto retailer since 1965. It owns and operates dealerships in Milwaukee, Appleton, Green Bay, Madison, Waukesha, Wauwatosa, West Bend, and Greenfield, representing Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram, Toyota, Scion, Honda, Nissan, KIA, Mazda, and Mitsubishi. With over 1,000 employees, the company also operates a nationwide fleet and leasing business and has its own in-house financing company.


Russ Darrow's Gas Saving Tips

Posted on April 20, 2016

Stopping to get gas can be a pain no matter how often you have to fill up, or what kinda of car you drive. Here are three helpful tips to get the most out of your fuel while at the gas pump


Pump Slow - When pumping your gas, set the trigger on the slowest setting. This will help you avoid getting the vapors sucked back into the ground which may cause you to get less for your money!


Fill Times - Wednesday morning is usually the best day of the week to buy gas as they will begin to increase for the weekend rush after that time. Also, if you happen to see a gasoline tanker filling the tanks, come back another day or go to a different station. As the tanks are being filled, the turbulence can stir up sediment, which can clog fuel filters and fuel injectors.


Filtered pumps at reputable stations - Is the gas you buy for your used car filtered at the pump? Some gas stations don’t have pump filters leaving you with the possibility of getting dirty gasoline. Or even worse, they may water down their product. Find a station you trust, and stick to it!


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Russ Darrow's Guide to Budgeting Basics

Posted on April 11, 2016

Saving money begins with budgeting where you spend your money. You need to make a plan and stick to it, especially when you are on a tight income. To start, sort what you spend your money on into two categories: what you need and what you only want.

Focus on the future and the long term instead of instant gratification. Your needs are things you need for survival, like shelter, basic clothing and food. Your wants are everything else.


Cut Costs without Major Lifestyle Changes

You’re probably identifying a lot of things as “wants” that you would have considered to be absolute needs. But, you don’t have to overhaul your entire life to save money. Consider making some of these small changes:

  • Stop paying for cable. Instead, use a streaming service like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime.
  • Pack your lunch. Not only can you save an estimated $2,000 per year if you don’t eat out, you can also make healthier choices.
  • Cancel email deals and alerts. These are just tempting you to spend money on things you don’t need or want.
  • Buy used. You can often find great, gently used home décor, clothing and even electronics for a fraction of their retail prices at thrift stores.
  • Cancel memberships. Get rid of the gym membership you don’t use, and consider cancelling the membership to the discount store if you rarely go.
  • Reduce your phone bill. There are many ways to do this, but most boil down to mply comparison shopping or asking for a better rate.
  • Visit your local library. Not only do they have books, they also have music and movies that you can check out for free.
  • Save on your insurance. If you’re not sick often, consider calling your insurance company and requesting a higher deductible, which will lower your monthly payments.

Save Money at Home

Your home may not feel like your castle, but it’s probably responsible for a huge chunk of your spending. Cut utility costs and bills by following these steps:

  • Change your showerheads and sinks. Low-flow versions can save up to 50% of your water consumption. 
  • Add insulation. Reduce as much as 20% of your heating and cooling costs with new/more insulation, according to Green Energy Solutions, Inc. You can pick up a roll of insulation for about $15 at most home improvement stores.
  • Change your bulbs. LED bulbs are more expensive upfront, but operate for just pennies. Fluorescent bulbs also last about 4-10 times longer than regular incandescent light bulbs.
  • Fight drafts. Weather stripping your home prevents drafts, which could keep your heating and cooling costs from skyrocketing during summer and winter. Use a programmable thermostat. Your home doesn’t need to be exactly 72 degrees while you’re gone, even if you have pets. You’ll save on both heating and cooling costs.
  • Lower your water heater’s temperature. Keep your heater’s temperature at 130 degrees, which is hot enough to kill germs and safely wash dishes. Do laundry in cold water.

Save Money on the Go

  • Be a better driver. Read this short guide for great tips on eco-friendly driving.
  • Use apps. The GasBuddy app helps you find the cheapest gas based on your location.
  • Stop speeding. Going from 70 MPH to 55 MPH could save you almost 20% fuel efficiency.
  • Pump up your tires. Tires lose about a pound of pressure each month, which is bad news, since driving with tires that are just 3 pounds underinflated makes your vehicle's fuel economy drop by 1%.
  • Clean your car. If you're hauling around an extra 100 pounds, for example, you're lowering fuel efficiency by up to 2%. Time to get rid of that extra load.
  • Consider a warranty. Especially if you’re buying used, a warranty could help you save on repair costs.
  • Keep up with maintenance. Though oil changes cost money in the short-term, they’ll keep your car on the road for much longer if you perform them at the manufacturer’s recommended miles.

Top Couponing Links

If you’re not already a couponer, we highly suggest you get to clipping. Coupons are basically free money. The best part is you no longer have to cut paper coupons since there are endless digital coupon websites and apps.  


Top Budgeting Method: The Envelope Method

It goes like this: Let’s say you have budgeted $500 a month for groceries. When you receive your first paycheck of the month, withdrawal $250 and put the cash in an envelope. On that envelope, write "Groceries” and only use it to pay for food at the store. If you go food shopping and leave the envelope at home by mistake, turn the car around and go back to get it.

Make sure to take enough money to cover your groceries for that trip. If you take $150 and you tally up a bill for $160, take some things out of the cart. Put any change back in the envelope. When you get paid again, put another $250 in the envelope. That’s your $500 for the month for food. If you want to go to the store but don’t have enough money, raid the fridge for leftovers.

Use the envelope system for items that tend to bust your budget. Common examples include groceries, restaurants, entertainment, gasoline and clothing. When the money runs out of each envelope, don’t spend any more until the new month starts and new money goes in your envelope.


Tips for using the envelope method

Direct deposit into a separate savings account for bills, and have the payments automatically withdrawn from the same account.

Most employers offer the option to have a certain percentage or dollar amount put into a separate account, straight from your paycheck, which can help you start saving. You can automate a portion of your check to the account and build your nest egg without thinking about it.


Make Payments on Time to Improve Your Credit

While you are putting a lot of time and effort into getting your financial health back on track, don’t let something silly like not making your payments on time mess up all the hard work you’ve done to improve your credit and your overall financial life.



Crashers, M. (2012, January 18). U.S. News. Retrieved from http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/my-money/2012/01/18/5-reasons-you-need-a-budget
Geary, L. (n.d.). Bankrate. Retrieved from http://www.bankrate.com/finance/personal-finance/5-big-bills-you-can-cut-fast-1.aspx
Hamm, T. (2014, January 22). The Simple Dollar. Retrieved from http://www.thesimpledollar.com/5-tactics-for-getting-a-better-cell-phone-deal/
Holbrook, S. (2013, May 31). U.S. News. Retrieved from http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/slideshows/8-thrifty-home-improvements/3
Ramsey, D. (n.d.). Dave Ramsey. Retrieved from http://www.daveramsey.com/blog/envelope-system-explained
Shin, L. (2015, February 26). Forbes. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/laurashin/2015/02/26/44-ways-to-make-more-money/#6580c34466e1
Washicko, C. (2013, July 9). U.S. News. Retrieved from http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/articles/2013/07/09/the-new-and-improved-way-to-coupon

Russ Darrow Service | Why you should get your car serviced at a dealership

Posted on March 10, 2016

At Russ Darrow we want all of our customers to feel confident in the service and safety of their cars. That’s why all Russ Darrow service departments employ highly trained, skilled mechanics to service your vehicle, and most are ASE Master Technicians. So what does ASE stand for? ASE is short for the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. For over 40 years, this independent non-profit organization has worked to improve the quality of vehicle repair and maintenance by testing and certifying automotive technicians. This certification program helps take the guesswork out of finding a good mechanic. Vehicles are becoming more technologically advanced, which means they often require more highly trained mechanics. That’s why each ASE certified mechanic must pass a difficult national test to prove they have the skills and knowledge needed to do the job. Once a technician becomes certified, they can go on to become an ASE Master Technician, which shows they’re the best of the best. 

To earn Master Technician reputation, technicians need to pass a specified group of tests in a series and also document at least 2 years of relevant on-the-job work experience. An ASE Master Technician must recertify in all test areas every 5 years or they lose their master reputation. 

Why does this matter to you? When you take your car to a Russ Darrow service team, you’re not only getting a great value, you can be assured that your vehicle is in the best hands. Visit our website to take advantage of these great Russ Darrow Service Specials


Russ Darrow's guide to oil changes

Posted on March 3, 2016

Any car that is ideal knows that oil changes ARE important. However, have you ever asked yourself, WHY ARE oil changes important? Listed here are a couple things to learn about the importance of an oil change:

1. Your engine requires oil – The pistons that fire in your engine must have oil in an effort to slide easily as part of your engine cylinders. Autohub360.com says, “Without oil, the pistons and bands inside the cylinder block shall get incredibly hot from the friction build without the oil to keep it from occurring. Whenever this happens, the point that is next that the pistons and rings will bond to the cylinder walls and stop your engine from operating. If this happens, your motor is officially deceased.”

2. Oil changes are preventive – getting oil that is regular at the dealership where you purchased your vehicle allows the technicians to take a look at other important features of your automobile they foresee being an issue in the future. These service technicians could offer advice and quite often fix the problem you time and money in the end before it becomes a serious problem – potentially saving.

Hopefully this helps you better understand the importance of an oil change. Our technicians are standing by to simply help with any vehicle issues you could have. Visit our Russ Darrow Service Department today


Russ Darrow's guide to general vehicle maintenance

Posted on February 24, 2016

Regular maintenance or preventative maintenance will definitely go a long way in ensuring your vehicle works at optimal condition. For example, no one truly enjoys the trips to a mechanic because our brake pads are worn right down to the rotors or drums and have to spend more time, and dollars to repair the brake system. What time that is little takes to be sure my wife and I do the "regular" items to our vehicle, helps make the time well spent. The pay me now or later on pay me cliche, in this instance, is not more true. The tips which are following aid you to keep your vehicle ready to take you wherever you have to get.


Enough can’t be said about regular oil changes and oil filter replacement. The recommended schedule is every 3, 000 miles. As a result of my prompt attention to oil this is certainly regular filter changes. It should go without saying but a lubing of the chassis or "lube job" some call it, should be performed at the time that is same have the oil changed.


The air conditioner filter, when dirty, is a problem that is typical you notice your vehicle has less power and it is using much more fuel. A check that is easy of filter gives you an idea of how dirty it's. Mechanics will almost always concur that this action that is simple go a long way in improving your vehicle’s performance. Air filters are instrumental in decreasing the quantity of dirt, dust as well as other damaging contaminants going into the engine. Simply put, your pickup operates less efficiently when the filter is clogged with grime and dirt. Filters should be replaced every 3,000 kilometers. Also, have the air filter changed once you have an oil change performed on the vehicle to save time or an trip that is extra the mechanic.


And while we’re speaking about filters, the fuel filter is probably the most forgotten or overlooked item for regular checkups. Car experts don’t understand why this occurs but it does. 


Regular replacement of this brake pads is additionally very important. Many expert mechanics will concur that all parts to your braking system system tend to be the most safety that is essential on an automobile. You should be in a position to stop your automobile quickly and properly. All brake pads will sooner or later wear out. You require to consider that the brake pads tend to be starting to become exhausted if you start hearing squealing like noises or perhaps the feel of this pedal upon braking is "mushy. The duty for the brake pads is to provide friction with the pad to make braking or stopping possible. Brake pads are quickly diagnosed for deterioration with regular examinations.


Operating in a dance with the ignition and distributor coils. Many things can indicate issues and spark plug wire malfunction. There may be corrosion at the cables or connections. Resistance can increase as the wires get older. The materials encasing the wires may be wearing or shredding completely.


The initial sign of trouble usually comes when you begin noticing a missing or kind that is stuttering as soon as the vehicle is running. There’s a tugging that is significant symptom that feels to you personally that the vehicle can’t obtain the energy to move. Keep your spark plug wires clean. Constantly troubleshoot for cables appear worn out or are not properly applied to your spark plugs. Replacing your spark plug wires will mean efficient starting and less ignition type problems that may follow because of used spark-plug wires.


Wash myself! Well maybe this one isn’t really vehicle "maintenance" by itself, but doesn’t an automobile that is clean you feel better? Again, have you ever noticed the car appears to run smoother when she’s clean? Having the engine steam cleaned on a maintenance that is regular can additionally get quite a distance in expanding the life span of your engine. Engine cleaning will keep the grime and corrosion from gathering on the spark plug wires too. It'll assist when you are overlooking your engine for leaks, unplugged or wiring that is loose keep the corrosion off your vehicle’s battery.


While these aren’t the only real maintenance that is"regular recommendations available, you can investigate your vehicle’s handbook for various other ideas that can help extend its life and ensure that is stays working in optimal problem.


Russ Darrow's Simple ways to improve your credit score

Posted on February 18, 2016

Need to improve credit rating? Sadly, a credit history isn't like a sports car, where you can rev the engine and almost instantly feel the end result. Credit ratings are similar to your record that is operating consider many years of past behavior, not just your present actions. As well as making the moves that tend to be right  you have actually become consistent. A few easy steps can push your score in the direction that is right.
Below are a few techniques are simple enhance your credit score.

View those credit card balances
One of several major facets in your credit score is how much credit this is certainly revolving have versus how much you are actually utilizing. The smaller that percentage is, the higher it is for your credit rating. The optimum: 30 percent or lower. To boost your score, "pay down your balances, and keep those balances low," says Pamela Banks, senior plan counsel for Consumers Union. What you might not understand: Even you still may have a higher utilization ratio than you'd anticipate if you pay balances in full every month. Which is because the balance is used by some issuers on your declaration because the one reported to the bureau. Even if you should be paying balances in full each month, your credit rating will still start thinking about your balances that are monthly. One strategy: See if the credit card provider will accept payments that are multiple the thirty days.

Eliminate 'nuisance balances'
"an easy method that is good enhance your score is to eliminate nuisance balances," says John Ulzheimer, a nationally recognized credit expert formerly of FICO and Equifax. Those are the balances that are small have actually on lots of charge cards. The main reason this strategy can really help your score: One of the things your score considers is just how many of your cards have balances, claims Ulzheimer. So, charging $50 on one card and $30 on another, in place of with the card that is samepreferably one with a good interest rate), can harm your score, he says. The answer to enhance your credit rating: Gather up dozens of bank cards by which you have small balances and pay them off, Ulzheimer says. Then choose one or two cards which are go-to you need to use for every little thing. "That way, you are not polluting a lot to your credit report of balances," he says.
Leave (ideal) old debt on your own report
Some individuals erroneously believe that old debt on their credit report is bad, says Ulzheimer. The minute they manage to get thier car or home paid down, they are from the phone looking to get it taken off specific credit report, he says. Negative products are detrimental to your rating, and a lot of of these shall disappear completely from your report after seven years. But, "arguing to get old reports off your credit report simply because they may be paid is a idea that is bad" he says. Good debt -- debt that you have managed well and paid as agreed -- is perfect for your credit. The longer your history of good debt is, the better it is for your score. One of many approaches to improve your credit score: keep debt that is old excellent accounts on so long as possible, states Ulzheimer. This is certainly also a good reason not to shut old accounts where you've had a repayment record that is solid. Looking to get rid of old debt that is good "like making straight A's in high-school and attempting to expunge the record 20 years later," Ulzheimer says. "You never want that stuff to come your history down."
Use your calendar
If you're buying a home, automobile or student loan, it pays doing your rate shopping within a period period that is quick. Every time you apply for credit, it causes a dip that is little your score that lasts a-year. That is because if some one is making programs which are multiple credit, it generally means she or he would like to use more credit. However, with three kinds of loans -- mortgage, car and more recently, student financial loans -- scoring formulas enable the undeniable fact that you'll make several applications but remove only 1 loan. The FICO score, a score frequently used by lenders, ignores any inquiries which can be such in the 30 days prior to rating. It's going to count those made within a typical shopping period as just one single inquiry if it finds some that are over the age of 30 times. The size of that shopping duration is dependent upon the credit score used. Then you have 45 days, says Ulzheimer if lenders are utilizing the newest kinds of rating software. With older forms, you ought to hold it to 2 weeks. Older forms of this software won't count student this is certainly multiple inquiries as you, no matter how close together you make applications, he says. "The takeaway is never dillydally," Ulzheimer claims.
Always settle payments on time
In the event that you're planning a purchase that is big like a home or a car), you are scrambling to assemble one big chunk of cash. Although you're juggling bills, that you do not wish to start out bills that are sending. Even if you're sitting on a pile of savings, a drop in your score could scuttle that dream deal. One associated with biggest components in a credit that is good is simply month after thirty days of plain-vanilla, on-time repayments. "Credit scores are based on what is in your credit report," says Linda Sherry, director of nationwide concerns for Consumer Action. In the event that you're bad about paying your bills or paying them promptly -- it damages your credit and hurts your score, she states. That will even expand to items which aren't normally connected with credit scoring, such as collection books, she says. Which is because even if the original "creditor," like the collection, doesn't are accountable to the bureaus, they may eventually contact a collections agency for an bill this is certainly unpaid. That agency could really well list the item on your credit report. Saving money for a purchase that is big smart. Just do not slight the bills that are regular pay them late to do it.
Don't hint at an increased risk
Sometimes one of several best methods to improve your credit score is always to maybe not take action that could sink it. Two of the biggies are missing payments and suddenly paying less (or charging significantly more) than you normally do, says Dave Jones, retired president for the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies. Other changes that may scare your card issuer however always dent your credit rating: using completely money advances or even using your cards at companies that may show current or money that is future, such as a pawnshop or a divorce attorney, he claims. "You only do not desire to do anything that will indicate risk," says Jones.
Don't obsess
You ought to be laser-focused on your own score whenever you understand you'll quickly require credit. In the interim, be mindful of your expenses and responsibly utilize credit. Your score will mirror these investing that is smart. Are you getting prepared to make a purchase that is big such as a home or motorcar? At the least a months which can be few advance, spring for a duplicate of one's credit scores, Sherry says. While the score you can get may possibly not be the exact same one your lender uses, it will level you on numerous of the exact same requirements and provide you with a indication this is certainly good of well you're handling your credit, she says. It shall offer specific how to improve your credit score -- in the shape of a few codes or factors that kept your rating from being higher. You the credit score it used, due to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act if you are denied credit (or don't qualify for the lending company's most useful rate), the financial institution has to show. Another move that is smart Regularly hold up with your credit report, says Sherry. You're entitled to 1 of every one of your three credit bureau reports (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) for free every year through annualCreditReport.com. Smart customer tip: Stagger them, Sherry says. Send for example every four months, and you may monitor your credit for free.

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Russ Darrow Car Buying Advice - Buying Your Dream Car

Posted on February 17, 2016

Buying a family car  isn't like buying a toy for the kid which you enter any shop with rather small information, check simply a bit, pay the amount and come back home with the thing, it costs you plenty and is certainly a priced possession so you need to be well ready before the final purchase. Here you’ll find some tips that are helpful will are car that is excellent advice for you.

Determine what the needs you have Are - First thing to determine is exactly what your requirements are. How much do you typically travel? Which kind of roads you simply typically take to? You prefer a motor car that is brand new your daily household demands or even for experience? Simply how much is the spending program? Without being clear about all these problems, it won’t be possible you ought to personally buy to help you decide what. So think carefully about your needs, then take records finally think of purchasing a vehicle which fulfills all your valuable requirements if possible, and.

Be Well Informed - Living in the age of information, it appears really unbelievable you set up buying a motor sports car without collecting information that is vital to it. When you're yes what you want and exactly what businesses offer you all of that you want start you search for all those other information that is necessary, how old could possibly be the model, exactly how trustworthy it is, what reviews it has got from car critics, and other information that is such determines the reliability of this truck.

Choose Right Time To purchase - Of program, vehicles tend to be perhaps not seasonal like mangoes, you'll be able to really get them anytime most regarding the round, but but it really is best to see the time whenever your acquisition proves many year that is profitable. It is actually certainly one of the recognize car buying that is best advice. Buying a motor automobile that is new festive seasons proves quite lucrative due to the fact companies offer savings over these times. And then it is always recommended to wait till the season that is following buying your dream car if you are maybe not in a hurry to get an automobile.

Check always Out Resale Value - automobiles would be the worst opportunities. If you should be an individual that is fashionable usually do not think about keeping similar car more than a few years, never forget to check its resale value away. Motor vehicles drop about 25% value the minute that is brief have now been bought. Consequently, simply take to purchasing a motor automobile which has better selling value. They will show automobile this is certainly really great advice if you ponder within the above mentioned points before generally making any choice.

If you still need help picking out the perfect car see our online inventory at www.russdarrow.com


Distracted driving and how to avoid it

Posted on January 28, 2016

Driver distraction accounts for nearly half of all car crashes and near car crashes alike, with drowsiness and driving while drunk rounding out the top three.  According to the NHTSA the principal actions that cause distracted driving and lead to vehicle crashes are many you probably do every time you drive. Ever look at an accident as you’re driving by, rubbernecking or slowing down to gawk at an accident accounts for 16 percent of all distraction-related crashes. After rubbernecking, other common driver distractions included: 

• Eating
• Looking at scenery
• Other passengers or children
• Adjusting the radio, cassette or CD player
• Reading the newspaper, books, maps or other documents
• Grooming such as hair grooming, shaving, or applying makeup.
• Smoking including lighting up, putting out cigarettes, or falling ashes 


Happy New Year from Russ Darrow

Posted on December 23, 2015

A New Year’s Eve celebration can be all about having fun with family and friends while recalling the year that has just passed and looking forward to the beginning of a new one. For many, this means heading out to a gathering of people or hosting a party at home. No matter which activity you choose to participate in, this holiday is seen as one of the most dangerous for driving.

Hundreds of fatalities are recorded each year on New Year’s Day (after midnight on New Year’s Eve), which makes it one of the deadliest days for drivers. While arranging for alternate means of transportation is the safest solution, practicing defensive driving skills, as well as good judgment, could mean the difference between life and death if you must drive that night. Drivers need to make sure they are driving safely behind the wheel while watching for others on the road that may be driving recklessly, so here are some tips on how to drive safe this holiday. While it is common sense not to drink and drive, it never hurts to be reminded. If you do drink and need to head home, there is a variety of options to keep you safe. Public transportation is a big one. You can call a taxi, use mass transit, or hire a shuttle or limousine service if you can plan ahead. Another option is to designate a sober driver to take you to and from your holiday celebration. Also, make sure you have an option to sleep over where ever you are in case you cannot get a ride home.

If you are driving, there are several things you can do to be safe on the streets. One thing is to be alert and watch for pedestrians, especially if you are in a residential area. Even though these people aren’t driving, they could be walking in the streets due to alcohol consumption or inclement weather. Drive slowly and be ready for anything. 

When you’re on the road, it is important to be mindful of sporadic lane changers. Keep an eye on those who are changing lanes. They might try to weave in and out between cars, which is very dangerous if you’re not paying attention. Watch your mirrors to see if anyone is approaching your car quickly. Then, slow down to let them pass.

It’s not just the people who slip in and out of traffic who may pose a threat. Others may change lanes without checking their blind spots. To avoid a collision, stay back or ahead and out of the car’s blind spot. Always make sure there is a safe distance between you and the other vehicle. If you notice another driver showing signs of impairment, keep your distance.

Another tip that can be overlooked during this time of year is double-checking intersections before driving through them. This is where many accidents happen. Not everyone stops when the light turns red. Maybe they aren’t paying attention or they are distracted. Be extra careful and look both ways, twice, before starting up again when the light turns green.

Lastly, one thing you absolutely want to avoid during your holiday drive is provoking other drivers. Avoid making eye contact with drivers who are driving aggressively or appear angry. Scientists claim that road rage is escalated when people look directly at each other. Also, don’t tailgate other drivers or make hand gestures. Following others too closely increases your risk for an accident…and, taking your hands off the wheel simply isn’t smart. 


Russ Darrow Tips | How to Improve Gas Mileage and Save Money

Posted on December 23, 2015

The following tips are meant to help you save money while getting the best fuel mileage results.

  1. Slow Down. Adjust your speed and drive more efficiently to save money in the long run. Speeding or hard acceleration in stop-and-go traffic can empty your wallet and your tank fast. If you have to do a lot of highway driving, keep your speed around 60 miles per hour, which is where fuel efficiency starts to drop fast. Going a little slower is even better.
  2. Pump Up Your Tires. Make sure your tires are at the right pressure to help you get more miles per gallon (mpg). If your tires are underinflated, it increases the rolling resistance, and as a result, will lower your fuel economy. Pumping your tires to the proper pressure helps save you money while keeping you safe and your tires lasting long. If you don’t know the right pressure for your vehicle, consult your owner’s manual.
  3. Maintain Your Vehicle. Keep your engine properly tuned to maximize fuel efficiency. Regularly inspect your air filter to make sure it isn’t dirty. A clogged air filter as well as spark plugs in poor condition can significantly reduce mpg. You can also improve gas mileage by using the manufacturer’s recommended motor oil, and changing it every 3,000 miles. 
  4. Reduce Resistance. Remove luggage racks, bike racks or any roof racks when you’re not using them. These items add aerodynamic drag (resistance) which means your vehicle has to work harder and use more fuel to go the same speed.
  5. Take A Load Off. Another tip for improving gas mileage is to lighten your load. Clean up the inside of your vehicle and remove any excess weight. If you’re hauling around heavy items, it can affect your gas mileage. Try to keep your trunk empty to save money at the pump!

There are many things you can do to improve gas mileage, but if you start with these 5 easy tips, you could start to see an improvement.


Russ Darrow Tips | 7 Tips For What To Do In Case Of car Accident

Posted on October 19, 2015

Most drivers make costly, long-term decision errors immediately following an accident as fear gives way to anger and frustration. Questions race through your head faster than the mind can register them. Who was at fault? Will my car ever be right again? What are my rights and responsibilities? A calm and informed reaction to an accident will reduce your chances for additional grief and expense.

1-Move your vehicle to a safe place, then stop and identify yourself to the other driver. (Some state or local statutes may require the vehicle be left as is.) If it can’t be moved, turn on the hazard lights. Seek medical help if you or other parties require it, and notify the police. Tell them who you are, where you are, and about any obvious or claimed injuries.

2-Exchange information with the other driver(s) including driver’s license numbers. Get the driver’s name, address,telephone numbers and name of insurance company. Also, list any passengers and witnesses.

3-Get names and badge numbers of any police officers who arrive at the scene. If there are injuries or extensive damage, the police should file a report. Ask to get a copy.

4-Avoid any extensive discussions at the scene about who is responsible for damage. If the other person admits responsibility, offers a money settlement and you accept, any future claim against the driver may be compromised. You or the other party may later find damage and bodily injury not apparent at first.

5-Write a complete description of the accident as soon aspossible. Include weather conditions, estimated speeds, and as much precise information as you can observe. Take photographs if a camera is available.

6-Have the vehicle towed or driven to a collision repair facility of your choice. If in doubt, there are thousands of Automotive Service Association (ASA) member-businesses around the nation. Look for the ASA logo in the Yellow Pages or the red, white and blue ASA sign.

7-Notify your insurance company of the accident as soon as possible.


Russ Darrow Group Teams with McDonald’s to Provide “All Day Breakfast”

Posted on October 9, 2015

Russ Darrow Group has partnered with McDonald’s Southeastern Wisconsin to help deliver breakfast items to winners of their “Breakfast for Lunch for Ten” promotion, via its “All Day Breakfast Mobile.”


To enter, contestants must “follow” @McDonaldsMKE on Twitter and then tweet, “Bring me breakfast!” and include the name of their workplace. McDonald’s will select the winners in a random drawing of Twitter followers every Monday afternoon, through October 29. McDonald’s All-Star Crew, employees of the 125 locally-owned McDonald’s in Southeastern Wisconsin, will drive the All Day Breakfast Mobile, a specially-wrapped Kia Soul provided courtesy of the Russ Darrow Group, to award breakfast items to the winners. The All Day Breakfast Mobile also will be seen throughout the area during the month, with All-Star Crew members awarding prizes.



In addition to Twitter, contestants can register to win All Day Breakfast on 103.7 KISS-FM’s contest page at http://www.1037kissfm.com/


Corrective Maintenance vs Preventative Maintenance

Posted on August 20, 2015

In terms of system maintenance, preventative maintenance often pops into the mind. However, another kind of maintenance, corrective maintenance,

also plays a job in the procedure.  When it comes to system maintenance, preventative maintenance often comes to mind. But, a different type of maintenance, corrective maintenance, also plays a role in the process. In certain full cases, such as when preventative maintenance costs are excessive and worker safety isn’t

Compromised, it may even be preferred. The distinctions between Preventative and Maintenance that is corrective unlike maintenance which is completed with the target of preventing a

problem, corrective upkeep is done to correct a challenge or fault

once this has been detected. Its objective would be to restore . Another distinction between preventative and maintenance that is corrective the procedures. For instance, with a service that is preventative, the

technician knows exactly exactly what needs to be done such as replace the oil,

inspect belts, or lubricate parts which can be going. With a maintenance that is corrective

solution order, the tasks depend on what’s discovered. Corrective maintenance

often requires diagnosis that is extensive any repairs are made or

parts replaced. For example, a technician might should talk with employees who witnessed a

malfunction to gain a much better understanding of just what occurred before

inspecting the equipment. By comprehending the symptoms and potential

causes, the technician make an improved diagnosis. The method because of the unknowns related to corrective maintenance

typically takes a lot longer than a task that is preventative. For instance, when

creating a service order for a tune-up that is routine you’ll know exactly how

long the tune-up should take along with the parts that are typical may be

needed. The time and parts required are with a corrective solution call

unknown variables. When is Corrective Maintenance Appropriate?While preventing breakdowns is desirable, corrective maintenance can’t be

prevented completely. There’s no chance to predict an breakdown that is unexpected

defect, or fault. Even gear that is perfectly maintained be

susceptible to defects or factors that are external. Careless operation of

the equipment could additionally require measures that are corrective. In addition, some measures that are preventative be cost-prohibitive with

little advantage. If the gear is nearing the last end of its useful life

Or on schedule to quickly be replaced, it could make more sense to postpone

high priced preventative repairs and just take a approach that is wait-and-see. Another consideration involves how the equipment is used and what would take place

if it experienced a breakdown that is major. For instance, if a ski resort’s ski

lift hinges on components that are impossible to get and a dysfunction would

mean shutting the resort for the season, preventing breakdowns from

happening would be a priority that is top. On the other hand, it doesn't make

feeling to change the LCD display screen on an older laptop computer running on an

obsolete operating system. Repair or asset management computer software can help you decide the approach that is most useful especially on older gear. For example, the software could be utilized by your

to evaluate the apparatus's service records and dependability as time passes.

For those who have other identical pieces of gear, using data that are aggregate

from the fleet that is entire assistance you predict potential faults and

breakdowns. From here, the cost could be compared by you of most likely corrective

repairs against the price of preventative upkeep to determine if it

makes sense to wait. Should a breakdown occur with older equipment,

computer software normally useful in determining if it makes sense to maneuver forward with repairs or replace the equipment outright.   Preventative and maintenance that is corrective have their place. Knowing the

Differences and using computer software tools will allow you to make the choice that is most readily useful.  


Russ Darrow Car-Maintenance Tips: Four Easy Ways to Go Green with Your Car

Posted on August 6, 2015

Looking for ways to become more environmentally friendly with your car? Motorists can help protect the environment by following four simple steps from the non-profit Car Care Council.

  1. Follow a vehicle service schedule including steps like checking engine performance, keeping tires properly inflated, replacing air filters regularly, changing oil regularly and checking your gas cap. Routine maintenance helps reduce emissions and fuel consumption, saving money at the pump.
  1. Keep your current vehicle longer and limit the number of new cars you buy over the course of a lifetime. Extending vehicle life is as simple as taking care of your vehicle properly. You’ll gain years of reliable service without monthly car payments and higher insurance rates..
  2. Recycle or properly dispose motor oil, tires, batteries, fluids and other vehicle components to help protect the planet when performing vehicle maintenance or repairs.
    1. Repower your engine when faced with serious engine trouble. A remanufactured/rebuilt engine can give your vehicle new life and make it more fuel efficient for about the cost of an average down payment on a new car.
Read More: http://www.carcare.org/2015/04/four-easy-ways-go-green-car/

Russ Darrow Car-Maintenance Tips: How to Remove A Sticker From Your Car

Posted on July 31, 2015

Stickers on cars can symbolize just about anything under the sun. They can show support for a certain political candidate, identify you as a proud parent of an honor student or the fact that you just love that one special dog breed. Others are required by local laws, like city stickers. Some even come attached to your new car straight from the dealer.

But political campaigns and straight A's end at some point, and those city stickers need to be replaced every year.


While removing stickers isn't as easy as putting them on, we have some advice that should make the job a little less sticky.

What you need:


  • Hair dryer with hot air settings
  • Razor blade or a box cutter (if removing from glass)
  • Sturdy plastic card — could be a library card, credit card, frequent shopper card or ID
  • Two clean rags or detailing towels
  • Glass cleaning solution (if removing from glass)
  • Tree sap remover solution
  • Quick detailing spray

What to do:

1. Ensure that the sticker and the surrounding area are free of dirt. Doing this removal process works best after a car wash.

2. Plug in the hair dryer, turn the heat setting to hot and hold the hair dryer just a few inches above the sticker. Do not place the hair dryer directly on top of the sticker and the car's paint.

3. Keep the hair dryer over the center area for a few seconds, making sure the air coming out is hot and then slowly begin to move it around the rest of the sticker. You want to heat the edges of the sticker last so you can prep for the next step.

4. After you've let the sticker heat up, use the plastic card at an angle to gently scrape up under the sticker. You can also try using your fingertips. If the surface area is hot enough, you will be able to slide the card under the sticker's edge and begin to peel it away.


Repeating steps 2-3 a few more times may make a cumbersome presidential campaign sticker that's been on your bumper since the last time your party won easier to remove. You can also try moving the plastic card or razor blade back and forth while you slide it under the sticker's surface.

  If you're removing a sticker from your car's glass, use the box cutter or razor blade at a slight angle. Do not use a box cutter or razor blade on your car's paint; it will cause damage. On glass you will be able to apply a bit heavier pressure, if needed, to remove the sticker.

5. Continue to push the plastic card — or razor blade — underneath the sticker until it completely breaks away from the car's surface. It is completely normal for the sticker to break apart during this removal process.

6. Once the sticker is removed, you can repeat steps 1-4 to remove any sticky residue or remnants. Tree sap remover also works great. Just apply a few drops onto a clean rag or detailing cloth and scrub away. If there’s sticky residue on your car’s glass, use the razor blade to gently scrape it away

7. When that part of the car is completely clear of any sticker and its residue, polish it off with some glass cleaner or quick detailing spray


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