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As gas prices increase, improving your car’s mileage is crucial. By stretching a tank of gas further, you can reduce the amount of times you must fill up, which can help you save quite a bit of money in the long run.
- Reduce Excess Weight
If your car has front-wheel drive, putting extra weight on the rear axle means the front wheels aren’t getting as good a grip as they could be, which reduces your gas mileage. Furthermore, extra weight means the engine has to work a little harder to move the car, which also reduces your gas mileage. If you’re carrying a lot of weight, lightening the load can help you get a mile or two more per gallon.
- Properly Inflate Tires
To put it simply, under-inflated tires cause your engine to use more gas. Make sure your tires are inflated to the pressure indicated in your owner’s manual for the best balance between gas mileage and traction.
- Replace Air Filter and Spark Plugs
Replacing the air filter and spark plugs during a routine auto checkup not only helps your car last longer, but it can help your engine burn gas more efficiently.
- Use the Recommended Motor Oil
Don’t think that using any old type of motor oil will work for your car; your engine is actually designed to work best with a specific type. If you use a heavier weight oil than is recommended, this could create too much friction and cause the engine to work harder and burn more fuel. Check your owner’s manual to see what’s recommended for your car, and utilize only that type of oil.
- Check Your Gas Cap Seal
Over time, the rubber seal on your gas cap will start to break down, allowing oxygen to leak into the gas tank. This causes an overabundance of air to enter the engine as it pulls gasoline from the tank, and in turn the engine burns more gas.
- Drive at the Speed Limit or Below
Most cars burn gas less efficiently at speeds of 60 miles per hour or higher. Driving slower has an immediate effect on your gas mileage, and it also keeps you from getting costly speeding tickets. Cars vary at which speeds they are most efficient, but none have a top-efficiency speed greater than 60 miles per hour.
- Use Cruise Control
Using cruise control helps maintain a safe, legal, and gas-efficient speed. Using cruise control also helps reduce the need to accelerate and brake, which makes travel more gas-efficient.
There is plenty you can do to increase your gas mileage, and using these tips will help you save a lot of money, especially if you drive a lot or have multiple cars draining your family’s monthly budget. Keep in mind that taking your car in for regular checkups and maintenance can also save you money. A car that doesn’t run at its optimum performance level can cost you a lot in the long run. To schedule a maintenance with our Drive Casa service department, click here.
What other tips do you use to increase your gas mileage? Tell us in the comments below.
Knowing how to change a tire is a necessary skill for all drivers. If you rely on a cell phone to save you in a roadside emergency, there’s always that chance you will forget to charge it, be out of range, or leave it at home. Flat tires can happen anywhere, and a cell phone is no substitute for knowing how to change a flat tire.
Thankfully, changing a tire isn’t all that hard! Just adhere to the following guidelines to be prepared in case you have a flat.
Items You Need to Fix a Flat Tire:
These are the items you need to change a flat tire:
- Lug wrench
- Fully inflated spare tire
- Vehicle owner’s manual
If you have misplaced any of these items, or if your car did not come with these items, you should purchase new ones right away. Also, be sure you regularly inflate the spare tire.
Here are some items that don’t come with your vehicle that you should stow in your trunk or glove box in case you have to change a flat tire:
- Flashlight with working batteries
- Rain poncho
- Small cut of wood to secure the jack
- Wheel wedges
- Can of “Fix a Flat” just incase.
How to Change a Flat Tire:
1. Find a safe location
As soon as you realize you have a flat tire, do not abruptly brake or turn. Slowly reduce your speed and scan your surroundings for a level, straight stretch of road with a wide shoulder. An empty parking lot with level ground is an ideal place because it will prevent your vehicle from rolling. Also, straight stretches of road are better than curves because oncoming traffic will be more likely to see you.
Never attempt to change your tire on a narrow shoulder near oncoming traffic. Keep moving (slowly) until you find a safer spot. While driving on a flat risks ruining your rim, replacing a rim is better than being hit by an inattentive driver.
2.Turn on your hazard lights
Your hazard lights or “flashers” will help other drivers see you on the side of the road. To avoid an accident, turn them on as soon as you realize you need to pull over.
3. Use the emergency brake
Once stopped, always use the parking brake when preparing to replace a flat tire. This will minimize the possibility of your vehicle rolling.
4. Apply wheel wedges
Wheel wedges go in front of or behind the tire to ensure the vehicle doesn’t roll. If you’re changing a rear tire, place the wedges in front of the front tires. If your flat tire is at the front, put the wheel wedges behind the rear tires.
Bricks or large stones will work just as well as wedges, just be sure they’re large enough to stop the car from rolling.
5. Remove the hubcap
If your vehicle has a hubcap covering the lug nuts, it’s easier to remove the hubcap before lifting the vehicle with the jack. If your lug nuts are exposed, you can skip ahead to Step 6.
Use the flat end of your lug wrench to remove the hubcap. This will work for most vehicles, but some hubcaps require a different tool.
6. Loosen the lug nuts
Using the lug wrench, turn the lug nuts counterclockwise until you break their resistance. You may have to use force to do so. If this is the case, use your foot or all of your body weight if necessary.
Loosen the lug nuts about ¼ to ½ of a turn, but don’t remove them completely.
7. Place the jack under the vehicle
Place the jack beneath the vehicle frame, alongside the tire that’s flat. Many vehicle frames have molded plastic on the bottom with a cleared area of exposed metal specifically for the jack. To safely lift and avoid damage to the vehicle, follow the instructions for jack placement in your vehicle owner’s manual.
8. Raise the vehicle with the jack
To prevent the jack from settling under the weight of your vehicle and coming off balance, place a small cut of wood beneath it before attempting to raise your vehicle. This tactic is especially helpful on asphalt.
With the jack properly positioned, raise the vehicle until the flat tire is about six inches above the ground.
Never put any part of your body under the vehicle during or after raising the vehicle with the jack.
9. Unscrew the lug nuts
Now, remove the lug nuts all the way. Since you’ve already loosened them, you should be able to unscrew them mostly by hand.
10. Remove the flat tire
Gripping the tire by the treads, pull it gently toward you until it’s completely free from the hub behind it. Set it on its side to ensure it doesn’t roll away.
11. Mount the spare tire on the lug bolts
Place the spare on the hub by lining up the rim with the lug bolts. Push gently until the lug bolts show through the rim.
12. Tighten the lug nuts by hand
Put the lug nuts back on the lug bolts and tighten them all the way by hand. Once they are all on, check each one again, tightening as much as possible. You will tighten them with the wrench after lowering the vehicle to the ground.
13. Lower the vehicle and tighten the lug nuts again
Use the jack to lower the vehicle so that the spare tire is resting on the ground but the full weight of the vehicle isn’t fully on the tire. At this point, you should tighten the lug nuts with the wrench, turning clockwise, as much as you can. Push down on the lug wrench with the full weight of your body.
14. Lower the vehicle completely
Bring the vehicle all the way to the ground and remove the jack. Give the lug nuts another pull with the wrench to ensure they’re as tight as possible.
15. Replace the hubcap
If the hubcap you took from the flat tire will fit your spare, put it in place the same way you removed it initially. If it doesn’t fit, stow it away in your trunk.
16. Check the pressure in the spare tire
You should check the tire pressure of the spare tire to make sure that it is safe to drive on. “T-Type” temporary spares, also called “mini-spares,” require 60 psi (420 kPa). If the tire needs pressure, drive (slowly) to a service station immediately.
18. Take your flat tire to a technician
Temporary spare tires aren’t made to drive long distances or at high speeds, so drive cautiously until you’re able to visit a tire technician. A professional should be able to determine whether your tire needs a repair or if it’s time to replace it.
Tired of your vehicle and are looking to upgrade? Drive Casa has your back! Browse our inventory today!
Having car insurance coverage is important to keep you protected in case of an accident. It is also illegal if you do not have car insurance. If you feel like your monthly insurance fee is too much for your budget, there are actually a few ways that you can reduce it!
8 Ways to Lower Your Car Insurance Bill:
- Raise the deductible: Deductibles are what you pay before your insurance policy kicks in. By requesting higher deductibles, you can lower your costs substantially. For example, increasing your deductible from $200 to $500 could reduce your collision and comprehensive coverage cost by 15-30%. Paying a $1,000 deductible can save you 40% or more.
- Reduce coverage on older vehicles: Consider dropping collision and/or comprehensive coverages on older cars. If your car is worth less than 10 times the premium, purchasing the coverage may not be cost effective. Auto dealers like Drive Casa can tell you the worth of your car, or you can look it up online at Kelley’s Blue Book.
- Low Mileage Discounts: If you drive less than the typical driver you might be able to take advantage of low mileage discounts. Talk with your insurance provider to see if your driving is eligible.
- Buy in Bulk: Many insurers will give you a break if you buy two or more types of insurance, like property and auto insurance. You may also get a reduction if you have more than one vehicle insured with the same company. Some insurers reduce the rates for long-time customers. Despite this, you may save money buying from different insurance companies, compared with a multi policy discount.
- Keep a Good Credit Record: Credit information and history often influence the pricing of your auto insurance. By maintaining good credit, you can save money each month on your auto insurance bill. If you don’t have great credit, Drive Casa can help! Financing a vehicle with us can actually improve your credit score!
- Compare Costs: If you are in the market for a new car, compare different insurance rates of different cars before picking one out. The cost of your vehicle plays a role in insurance premiums, as well as how much it is to repair it, the safety record, and more. You might even be eligible for discounts if your vehicle is equipped with certain safety features.
- Ask about group insurance: Some companies offer reductions to drivers who get insurance through a group plan from their employers, through professional, business and alumni groups or from other associations. Ask your employer and inquire with groups or clubs you are a member of to see if this is possible.
- Seek out other discounts: Companies offer discounts to policyholders who have not had any accidents or moving violations for a number of years. You may also get a discount if you take a defensive driving course. If there is a young driver on the policy who is a good student, has taken a driver education course or is away at college without a car, you may also qualify for a lower rate.
Insurance coverage is important to have, but the bills shouldn’t make or break your finances each month. Use this guide from Drive Casa to save money on insurance each month!
Need a vehicle upgrade? Browse our inventory today!
If you’re in the market for a new vehicle, you should determine what you can actually afford and understand the total costs involved.
Consider the following factors when calculating your car budget:
The Total Cost of The Vehicle
The total cost of your vehicle is more than just the sticker price; it also includes things like sales tax, title and registration fees. Remember that you will also need to have money to pay for auto insurance, gas, regular maintenance, repairs, and other costs associated with owning a car.
How Much Can You Afford Each Month?
If you’re financing a vehicle, then you’ll need to figure out how much of a monthly payment you can afford. Keep in mind that your monthly payment will include both principal and interest. The loan term, interest rate, and down payment will all affect your monthly cost.
How Much Can You Put Down?
Most vehicle purchases are made with a down payment. The more you can devote to your down payment, the lower your monthly car payment will be.
The 10%–20% Rule
To avoid overextending your budget, devote only 10% of your income towards your vehicle. This means if you make $3,000 per month, you’ll want to spend $300 per month on your car payment.
If you’re not planning on financing your new car, then the 10%-20% rule still applies. You’ll want to take 20% of your annual income to determine what you can afford to spend on a vehicle. For instance, at $36,000/year, you’ll be able to spend $7,200 yearly on your vehicle ($36,000 x .20 = $7,200).
Factor In Your Debt
If you currently have a lot of debt, there is a simple rule to follow. Consumer Reports found that it is best to spend no more than 36% of your gross monthly income on debt. Itemize what all of your monthly debt payments add up to, including mortgage, credit cards, and loans. Once you’ve totaled those, subtract them from 36% of your income to determine how much you can realistically add. For instance, if your income is $3,000 per month and you already spend $800 per month on credit card and loan payments, you can only afford a new monthly auto loan payment of $280, calculated as ($3,000 x .36) – $800 = $280.00.
If you’re in the market for a quality car, please browse our inventory today! Our dedicated team will work with you to finance a vehicle you can afford, even if you have credit issues! Click here to get approved today!
Having trouble securing an auto loan to buy a car? When other dealerships turn you away, Buy Here Pay Here (BHPH) dealerships like Drive Casa can help you finance a great quality vehicle!
What Is a Buy Here Pay Here Dealership?
Unlike traditional dealerships, Buy Here Pay Here dealerships finance everything in house. This gives them the ability to work with people from all credit backgrounds.
Drive Casa Benefits
A Buy Here Pay Here dealership like Drive Casa allows you to get a loan immediately. You don’t have to wait for the bank to process your application and you don’t have to apply with multiple lenders.
You, not the bank, can set your terms of repayment. If you want a seven-year loan, or even a nine-year loan, you can let us know and we will create a loan that is based on what you need and can afford.
Vehicle History Report
If you’re like most, you want to know if your vehicle has been in any accidents, totaled or had flood damage. We can confidently say we do not sell any pre-owned vehicles that have been damaged. This is why we provide a Vehicle History Report on every car we sell.
All of our vehicles go through a multi-point inspection before they are available on our lot. If they do not pass our rigid guidelines for safety and quality, we either get rid of the vehicle or do the repairs to make sure you and your family can safely drive home.
We also offer a 12 month, 12,000 mile warranty on all of our vehicles.
Complimentary Oil Changes for the First Year
No need to budget for oil changes anymore, we have you covered! Get oil changes on us every 3,000 miles or 3 months for the first year!
Drive Casa Qualifications
At Drive Casa, we understand tough times happen in life. That is why we do our best to help people from all credit backgrounds finance great quality vehicles. In order to do so, we have certain qualifications that have to be met before we start the approval process.
To finance a vehicle with us, you must bring the following things:
- Proof of Address
- Proof of Income
Acceptable Proofs of Income Include:
- Two most recent pay stubs
- Bank Statement with your name/bank name/bank address
- Documentation of social security, disability, or child support
Acceptable Forms of Identification Include:
- Any state issued ID (Excluding LA)
- Driver’s license
Acceptable Proof of Address Includes:
- Mail with name and address on it
- Lease agreement
- Phone/utility bill
Why Choose Drive Casa
When every traditional lender turns you down, Buy Here Pay Here dealers like Drive Casa can help put you behind the wheel. If you think a Buy Here Pay Here dealership is a good fit for you and your circumstances, click here to browse our inventory today or call us at 844-487-3650 for more information!
Dining out with kids isn’t always a fun proposition, but breakfast can be a great time to go to a restaurant with the whole family! Kids tend to be less cranky earlier in the day, and morning menu offerings suit even picky palates. Keep these family–friendly breakfast spots in mind the next time you visit one of our locations!
If you’re visiting our Buckner location, we recommend you stop in at Tejano’s Diner just a block away!
Although this restaurant does not have a website, it does not need to be overlooked according to all of the positive Facebook reviews!
We recommend ordering “The Grove Special”, which includes two pancakes, two eggs, two sausage links and two strips of bacon. Other menu options include chicken fried steak and grits!
In addition to the family-friendly atmosphere, this restaurant is very affordable with menu prices starting as low as $2.99 for a full breakfast!
If you’re one of the many that are still mourning the end of HGTV’s “Fixer Upper”, this is the restaurant for you! The show, which was based in Waco, followed husband and wife duo Chip and Joanna Gaines as they renovated houses all over the community.
We recommend trying the signature golden-brown biscuits (served with a side of strawberry butter) as well as the “Farm Breakfast”, which includes two eggs, homemade tator tots, and a choice of bacon or sausage. Other popular menu options include fluffy pancakes, French toast and garlic cheese grits.
The Dallas Diner has been a landmark in the community since 1982 and includes delicious menu options such as the breakfast taco, chorizo burrito and signature omelets. We recommend trying the “Omelet a La Casa”, which is made up of onions, tomatoes, jalapeno and ranchero sauce.
To see the full menu, please click here!
Visiting our Marvin D. Love Hwy location? You have to stop by Norma’s Café, a restaurant opened in 1956 that is known for its amazing home-style country breakfast options! The food and atmosphere will take you back in time and create a great memory for you and your family.
We recommend trying the “Norma’s Café Favorite”, which includes two eggs any style, hash browns or grits, buttermilk biscuits and your choice of ham, bacon or sausage. Other options include “Migas” (Scrambled eggs with tortilla chips, jalapeño peppers, tomatoes and onions and cheddar cheese), breakfast tacos, pancakes, French toast and waffles.
To view the full award winning menu, click here!
Have any other family friendly breakfast places that you love? Tell us in the comments below!
The bold Texas sun can damage your car’s paint job in a matter of just a couple years. This decreases the value of your car and also makes the car look lackluster, and dull. To avoid sun damage and keep your paint job shiny and new, follow these four steps!
Wash your car often, cleansing it of the grime and pollution that can get baked into the paint. To do this, purchase a soft cotton mitt to prevent scratches, and an automotive cleaning product. Do not use dish detergent because it will strip your paint job overtime. Also, do not wash your vehicle in direct sunlight or it will dry the car in uneven places and leave streaks. Even if you have dead bugs or other tough deposits, never scratch your car! Use a clay bar instead. It will quickly and efficiently get rid of those spots without leaving a scratch behind.
Make sure you dry your car thoroughly with a cotton rag or towel of some sort. Some people think drying a car isn’t necessary, but when your car dries on its own, minerals from the water evaporation process can build up and damage the paint job over time. The sun can also cause streaks in the paint if the car is not dried all over.
To really protect your car’s paint job, try waxing it with a liquid sealant. This is a much quicker and more effective way than dry waxing. Waxing protects the paint from most pollutants, and also fights off UV rays. It basically acts as sunscreen, but for your car. If you choose not to wax, grime could build up and end up damaging your paint job.
Purchase Protection Film
Lights can become yellowed and grimy from the Texas sun. There are multiple ways to fix this, but to prevent it, try an auto pain protection film. This translucent film can also cover your whole car if you wish. It acts as a direct barrier against the sun.
No car is immune from the damaging effects of the sun, but with these steps you can make the value of your car last a lot longer by protecting its paint job! Try them out!
Is it really possible to get better credit by financing a used car? The answer is yes! When you’re struggling with credit issues and know you need a better car, it’s easy to feel hopeless…But there is hope! Here at Drive Casa, we are a Buy Here Pay Here dealership that specializes in financing those who don’t have credit or have bad credit. Continue reading to learn how buying a used car can improve your credit over time!
Establishes a Line of Credit
If you don’t have any credit built up, financing a used car can help establish a line of credit! As long as you are proactive with your payments, your credit will build overtime.
Pay On Time, Every Time
Paying loans like mortgages, student loans, or car loans on time can increase your overall credit score greatly! We will work with you to find a car payment that fits your budget so it’s easy for you to make your car payment on time each month.
However, if you do not pay your car note on time, it can decrease your credit score.
Check Your Credit Score
When you apply for an auto loan, we’ll go over your credit report with you to make sure everything is accurate. The Federal Trade Commission has found that 5% of consumers have mistakes on the credit reports that affect their overall credit score. You can contest errors that you may find on your credit score. It is important to make sure that your credit report is accurate, removing any errors can improve your overall score.
Is it time for you to purchase another vehicle? Continue reading to find out! If any of the below apply to you, then it’s probably time to go car shopping!
Your Trips to the Auto Repair Shop Are More Expensive
You always take your car in for regular oil changes and maintenance, but now you notice those trips are getting more expensive. At around 120,000 miles, cars begin to show their age by needing new timing belts or water pumps, among many other potentially expensive repairs. Putting that money into a good used car might make better sense than spending $1,000 each time you drive to the repair shop.
You Doubt the Reliability of Your Car
When you get in your car and pray you make it each time you head to a destination, it’s a sign that it’s time for another car. You’ll save yourself some stress when you know you have reliable transportation.
You Are More Safety Conscious
If you’re driving a car that is old and has minimal safety features, it may be time to upgrade. Modern safety equipment on cars include driver, passenger, and side airbags, as well as anti-lock brakes and traction control. Upgrading to a newer car is one way to keep you and your family safe on the road.
Your Finances Change
That SUV you bought when you were making six figures may be tough to afford once your finances have changed. This has been the case for many Americans in the past few years. Until you get back on your feet, trade it in for something that better suits your new budget. Stop making those high car payments and keep some of it for those essentials you need to cover right now.
You Need to Build Up Credit
If you have had difficulty with your credit, such as a bankruptcy or late payments, then buying a used car can help. Used car dealerships, especially Buy Here Pay Here dealerships like ours, specialize in helping people with credit problems. We can help you finance a great quality vehicle when other dealerships will turn you down because of your credit. As long as you pay your car payment on time each and every month, your credit will build overtime!
Your brakes are one of the most important aspects of your car for obvious reasons, but how do you know when it’s time to get a brake check up or new brakes altogether? Continue reading to find out!
Brake Warning Signs
Do you hear strange noises when you hit the brakes? Whether you’re hitting them hard or not, if your vehicle makes a strange noise once the brake pedal is lowered, it’s a sign that your brake pads are worn out. When this occurs, it means that your brake pads are so worn down that the rivets they are attached to are rubbing on the rotor, causing damage inside your hood. The only way to fix this issue is to take it to the shop!
Are you noticing a difference in height of your brake pedals? This may mean that your pedals are sinking into the floor, which will make it even harder for you to come to a quick and sudden stop if you need to. This problem is associated with a poor hydraulic connection, meaning that if your master brake cylinder could be about to break.
Go With Your Gut
You are used to driving your vehicle. If you feel something is different or your car is acting strangely, do not hesitate to get your vehicle looked at. It’s always better to play it safe rather than sorry!
Do you have any questions about vehicle and brake safety? Interested in browsing the cars Drive Casa currently has in inventory? Contact us today and one of our vehicle experts will be in contact with you as soon as possible.