The Fastest Way to De-Fog Your Windshield

It’s starting to get cold here in Cache Valley. With winter just around the corner, we are reminded of the challenges of winter driving. Many have experienced getting into the bitter-cold car in the morning, anxious to get to work on time, only to find the inside of the windshield foggy and impossible to see out of.

No matter how late you are, it is always safer to wait for your windshield to clear (a car accident wouldn’t definitely make you late for work). Many people get impatient with the defogging of their windshield because they are unsure of which settings are best. Hot air, cold air, windows down/up, etc. And although it usually only takes a few minutes to defog your windshield, it’s helpful to know the quickest way.

Mark Rober, a former NASA engineer and current scientist tested out the possible combinations for defogging the windshield and came up with a way that is twice as fast:

  1.  Defroster on high.
  2.  Temperature control set to hottest temperature.
  3.  A/C turned on.
  4.  Turn off the inside air circulation.
  5.  Crack open the windows.

For a more detailed look at Rober’s experiment and to see the science behind it, check out his video:

Remember, this trick is helpful for defogging the inside of your windshield, but when heavier snow falls, you’ll need an ice-scraper to defrost from the outside of the windshield.

Is your vehicle not working like it should be? Is the heater or windshield wipers broken? Are your tires old and worn? For these, and many other problems, Discount Tire & Automotive Inc. located in Logan and Providence is here to help! Come by and see us and we’ll get you back safely on the road!

 

The 5-Step Guide to Buying a Used Car

Purchasing a brand new car is expensive. For many people, buying a used car is a better option. But it can be scary, especially if you are doing it for the first time! We’ve all heard the horror stories about used cars that weren’t what the buyer anticipated. In order to get the best car for your cash, and avoid getting ripped off, we’ve outlined the 5 basic steps to buying a used car.

tips for buying a used car1. Decide What You Want – Before anything else, decide what it is you are looking for. Do you want a small car or an 8-passenger van? Are there certain must-have features you are looking for? In addition to the type of car you are shopping for, decide the maximum amount of money you are willing to spend. Whether you plan to pay in cash or take out a loan, it is important that you have a defined budget, as this will filter out many cars from your search.

 

2. Do Your Homework – Once you know what to look for, it is time to do your homework. With a purchase this big, you really want to make an informed decision. Check out used car listings in your local area, or on larger websites such as cars.com or autotrader.com. Shop around, compare prices, view the vehicle history reports, and come up with a list of three cars that you like.

 

3. Go See the Cars – Call the seller and confirm the availability of the car. Feel free to ask questions over the phone – you may learn things about the car that you didn’t know before. Arrange a time for you to meet and see the car.  Take it for a test drive. While in the car, you’ll need to use 4 of your 5 senses (you probably don’t need to worry about tasting anything). How does everything look, both the interior and beneath the hood? As you are driving, how does the car sound and feel? Are there any unusual smells? If the car passes your initial inspection, arrange to have it checked by a mechanic. We’d be happy to check it out here at Discount Tire.

 

4. Make Your Decision – At this point you have test-driven a few different cars and are ready to make a choice. If not, repeat steps 1-3. Eventually you’ll make it to step 4. Consider all pros and cons, get the opinions of trusted friends and family, and make your decision.

 

how to buy a used car5. Negotiate – Before you begin negotiating, have a price in mind. When you initially make your offer, start a reasonable amount below this price. Tell the seller that you have done your research and seen similar cars for similar prices so you have facts to back up your offer. It’s likely that you’ll be able to arrive at a price that you are happy with. Close the deal, do the paperwork, and enjoy your new ride.

 

There are hundreds of thousands of people who have bought dependable used cars and gotten many years from their vehicles. We hope these steps will help you in your search for a new used vehicle. For any vehicle maintenance or repair needs, come see us at Discount Tire & Automotive in Logan or Providence!

Help at the Touch of a Button

Are you looking for the fastest, easiest way to find new tires for a specific vehicle, schedule vehicle repair appointments, and connect with Discount Tire & Automotive? The Discount Tire app is a revolutionary, new, FREE app that does just that. Now getting the help you need is just a button away!

You can create a personal account with a list of vehicles you own, making it easy to find tires for your specific make, model, and year. With your account you can also view maintenance notifications, view your service history, get exclusive deals, and schedule regular appointments.

When the unexpected happens, use the Discount Tire app to call Roadside Assistance, or speak with the Warranty Hotline. It’s everything you need to keep your car running smooth, in one convenient, easy-to-use application for Apple and Android.

Discount Tire & Automotive is your one-stop-shop for tires and vehicle repairs. With two locations in Cache Valley, wherever you are, we aren’t far away. Download the app or give us a call today to experience friendly customer service and expert vehicle care!

 

discount tire app

6 Things Every Driver Should Know

Driving has become an integral part of daily life. Most people have been driving a car since their teenage years, and many never learned the basic skills that are important to keeping the vehicle running safely and smoothly.

Whether you are 16 or 60, these are 6 things that every driver should know before they hit the road.

  1. How to check the oil – Even if you don’t want to change the oil yourself, everyone should know how to check the oil using a dipstick and determine if more oil needs to be added, or if you are due for an oil change. Depending on the year and model of your vehicle, you may be able to go six months or more between oil changes, but it is crucial that you monitor your oil levels often.
  2. Flat tire repair Logan, UtahHow to change a flat tire – You won’t make it very far on a flat tire. You could get a flat tire at anytime, anywhere. Sometimes there will be many people around you to help, but sometimes you might find yourself alone. Everyone needs to know how to jack up the car, remove the flat tire, and replace it with a spare. It’d be pretty embarrassing if your girlfriend had to show you how to change a tire, wouldn’t it guys?
  3. How to check fluids – In addition to checking the oil, there are other fluids that your car needs, and that you need to know how to check. These fluids are the coolant, power steering fluid, brake fluid, brake fluid, transmission fluid and windshield washer fluid. Each fluid has its own tank. Refer to your vehicle’s owner’s manual to learn where each is located.
  4. dead battery logan, UTHow to jump start the car – Knowing how to jump a car will be helpful not only for you, but other drivers who you may be able to help. If your battery is dead, grab some jumper cables (which you should keep in the back of your car) and hook up the cables to another vehicle. First attach the red positive clip to your battery, then the other red clip to their battery. Third, attach one of the black clips to the negative terminal on their battery, and lastly clip the last black clip to an unpainted metal surface on your car that isn’t near the battery.
  5. What to do after an accident – In the case of an accident, it is important (especially for young drivers) to know how to handle the situation. If possible, move your car to a safe spot off the road. Be calm and get out of your car. Check on the others involved. Call the police. Gather as much info as possible, taking pictures to document the scene if possible.
  6. Who to call – Last, but certainly not least, is knowing who to call when you need help. Discount Tire & Automotive has been providing Cache Valley with a wide variety of car maintenance services since 1976, and our experienced mechanics can help with any of your car needs.

 

how often should i replace my windshield wipers

How Often Should I Replace My Windshield Wipers?

Windshield wipers are a vital component of your vehicle. According to the Federal Highway Administration, a leading factor in 46% of fatal car accidents is impaired visibility. By ensuring that your windshield wipers are functioning properly, we can decrease the 3,400 weather-related car accidents that happen every day in the US  on average.

It is typically recommended that you replace your windshield wipers every 6-12 months, although, depending on where you live and the type of wiper blades you have, you may need to replace them more frequently. The most simple way to know if it is time to replace your windshield wipers is if you are having a hard time seeing out your windshield when it rains. Here are a few other things to look for:

  • Cracks or breaks in the rubber
  • Streaks on windshield
  • Consistent film of grime on windshield
  • Squeaking noises while operating
  • Imperfections in wiping pattern
  • Bent frames/blades
  • Season changes (here in Utah it’s a good idea to install winter blades during the cold months)

For being such an important part of your car’s maintenance and safety, replacing the wiper blades is a relatively simple task. However, if you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, all you need to do is bring your vehicle over to Discount Tire & Automotive. One of our technicians will install new premium blades and get you back safely on the road in a matter of minutes. To learn more about our selection of windshield wipers give us a call today!

The Penny Test

Did you know that nearly 50% of vehicles have at least one tire with half-worn tread? That’s pretty scary, especially when you consider that worn tires reduce the tire’s traction and ability to drive in unfavorable conditions. Typically a tread depth of 4/32″ or deeper is safe. 3/32″ is safe to drive on, but should be replaced soon. A ‘bald’ tire  is anything less than 2/32″ and should be replaced immediately.

It’s pretty difficult to eyeball those measurements, which is why the Penny Test was created. All you need to evaluate your tire tread depth is a penny.

penny test discount tire

  1. Insert a penny into the tread, with Lincoln’s head pointing down.
  2. Check to see how much of his head is showing above the tire tread.
  3. The more of the head you can see, the more dangerous your tires are. If you can see the entire head, go get your tires replaced at Discount Tire & Auto.

You will want to make sure you evaluate the entire tire and look for spots that look especially worn. If any part of the tire fails the penny test and is less than 2/32″, the tire should be replaced. Luckily, Discount Tire & Auto makes replacing tires in the Cache Valley area easy. Located conveniently in Logan and Providence, we have the expertise and resources for all of your automotive needs!

pre trip checklist

Be Ready For Your Summer Road Trip

Summer is here, school  is out, and it its time for those family vacations you’ve been waiting for all year! Most of us have experienced going on a trip and forgetting something back home. In order to prevent that, here’s a pre-trip checklist. While this is not an all-inclusive list, it should get you started.

  1. Place stop order on mail/newspaper.
  2. Find a house/pet sitter.
  3. Pay bills.
  4. Turn off lights or set light timers.
  5. Unplug electronics.
  6. Turn off water and gas.
  7. Close and lock windows.
  8. Take out trash.
  9. Throw out any food that will expire.
  10. Take out cash at ATM.
  11. Refill prescriptions.
  12. Confirm hotel reservations.
  13. Confirm flight/train/bus reservations.
  14. Make sure each person has packed clothing, underwear, socks, shoes, and toothbrush.
  15. Have snacks and games for the road.
  16. Take your car in to Discount Tire for a FREE Pre-Trip Inspection that includes an inspection of tires, alignment, steering, suspension, brakes, fluids, and brakes.

Discount Tire & Automotive makes it easy to get your car ready for the road! Located conveniently in Logan, UT and Providence, UT, we are your one-stop shop for all of your auto needs! Have fun and be safe this summer!

 

6 Tips for When You Lock Your Keys in Your Car

Tips for When You Lock Your Keys in Your CarMost of us know the feeling of accidentally locking your keys in your car. It can be very frustrating and embarrassing, and seem to always happen at the most inopportune time. According to the American Automobile Association, there are more than four million motorists that get locked out of their car every year. If you ever find yourself in this predicament, you don’t need to panic. Remember some of the tips below:

  • TIP 1 – One of the first things that comes to people’s mind when they realize their keys are locked inside of their car is to call their auto-insurance company to get roadside assistance. If you have recently purchased a new vehicle, often times roadside assistance comes as part of your warranty. Depending on where you are located, they usually send someone to help you get back into your vehicle. If you don’t currently have roadside assistance as part of your auto-insurance policy, you may want to discuss adding it.
  • TIP 2 – Get a temporary key made. The dealership would need your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) in order to make the key. This key may not be able to actually start your car, but you would be able to unlock the doors and retrieve your permanent keys.
  • TIP 3 – Some cars will allow you to gain access to the inside of the car through the trunk by moving the rear seats. However, you would have to have access to the trunk to be able to do this.
  • TIP 4 – You might want to consider keeping an extra key on hand somewhere. If you seem to always be locking yourself out of your car, this might be a good idea. You could hide a key in a well-hidden part of your car or hide a key in your wallet/purse. Another option would be giving a spare key to a family member or trusted friend who could come rescue you.
  • TIP 5 – Most new cars on the market have systems in place that won’t allow you to lock the door if the key is in the ignition or if a door is open. Cars with other features such as telematics can enable your vehicle to be unlocked remotely. In addition, having a keyless combination lock is a smart solution.
  • TIP 6 – Dial 911. We believe that safety always comes first. If you are locked out of your car and feel like you are in danger, call the police. Sometimes they can even unlock your car, or get in contact with a tow truck or locksmith professional for you.

We recommend that you never give your children keys to play with in the car due to the fact that you may get locked out of the car, with your children still inside.

In some cases, we recommend not using a wire hanger or a screwdriver to try and gain access into your vehicle. This can sometimes lead to further damage, or even injury – costing you more money in the long run.

We hope these tips and tricks help you the next time you accidentally lock your keys in your car! Trust Discount Tire to take care of all your automotive needs in Cache Valley.

 

In-Depth Look: Air Filters

Even if you don’t know anything about your car, you’ve probably heard of engine air filters before. You’ve probably also heard that they should be replaced here and there.

But what is an air filter? What does it actually do?

What is it?

An engine air filter is a vital element of your car engine delivering maximum performance. It keeps undesirable contaminants and particles out of the combustion chambers.

What does it do?

Your vehicle pulls air from outside into the engine to be able to combust and create movement. The air passes through the vehicle’s air box where the air filter is. The air then goes through the filter’s pleated material.

This filtration keeps the engine clean and running smoothly. Unfortunately, when the filter get clogged up, it keeps  proper air flow from entering the engine and decreases performance.

Did you know a clean air filter can increase your acceleration up to 11%?

Should I replace it?

If you aren’t sure if your filter needs replacing, just ask a certified mechanic. But if you want to do the diagnosis yourself, pay attention to these signs and symptoms. A decrease in acceleration, a rough engine start, or a check engine light are all signs that you should take your vehicle in for a check-up.

It is generally recommended that you replace the air filter every 15,000-30,000 miles. If you drive on a lot of dirt roads, you’ll probably want to replace it more toward the earlier part of that range.

If a bad filter isn’t replaced when it should be, then you’re engine will have to work that much harder and may not last as long. Sometimes filters can get so clogged that they finally tear and let in contaminants into the engine itself, causing irreparable damage.

Who should replace it?

Here at Discount Tire, you can be sure that you are receiving the best care possible. We have years of experience, and our friendly staff will treat you in an honest manner. For all of your vehicle maintenance needs, come visit us!

air conditioning repair

Common AC Failures

Are you excited for summer? We sure are, and it will be here soon! As you start getting ready for all those fun summer BBQ’s, pool parties, and vacations with the family, we hope that you don’t forget to get your car ready for summer too. Because it needs it! One of the common problems people encounter with their cars in the summertime is an air conditioning unit that goes out. We all know that driving in the heat of the summer with no AC is no fun, so if this happens to you, you’ll want to know how to diagnose the problem.

There are 2 common symptoms when it comes to the AC illnesses. Let’s talk briefly talk about them so you can identify the problem and get it taken care of.

Symptom #1: No Air Coming Out

If no air is coming out (not even hot air), then one of the major components of the air conditioning unit has probably died. The vehicle’s AC system is comprised of a compressor, condenser, evaporator, expansion valve and a tube/fan system. All of these components are important, and if any of them fails for any reason, the air will stop flowing from your vents. Newer cars have a safety mechanism that shuts down a component if their is a refrigerant leak detected. Check underneath the car for oil stains, which hint that their is likely a leak somewhere.

Symptom #2: Only Warm Air Comes Out

If the weather is really warm, it will usually take a few minutes for your car’s AC to get going at full capacity. But if the AC continues to blow nothing but hot air, then you know you have a problem. This symptom is common to multiple AC-problems, and knowing how to treat it may require help from the experts over at Discount Tire & Automotive. It could be something simple, like recharging the AC unit, or something more serious such as a freon leak.

Whatever AC problems you have, you can rest assured that the certified technicians at Discount Tire & Automotive will take care of the problem at the best value in all of Cache Valley!