Why Take a Car Test Drive Before You Buy?

Bowman Chevrolet Dealership
Busy drivers sometimes wonder, “Why take a car test drive before you buy?” After all, many drivers think they know exactly what they want when they step onto the lot. But, you may be surprised when you’re behind the wheel! At Bowman Chevy, we have a few tips and tricks to make sure that you get the most out of your new car test drive – and find the perfect car for you!

Planning Your New Car Test Drive

By doing a little prep work ahead of time, you can save time at the dealership and get a better sense of what each vehicle brings to the table.

  • Research your options extensively and create a short list of your potential options. Don’t forget to consider your trade-in vehicle when setting your budget!
  • Plan a day to devote to test drives. You’ll want to compare each vehicle back-to-back, so you can spot the subtle differences between each model.
  • Try to bring a friend or family member along to catch things that you might miss. Plus, they can check out the passenger accommodations while you’re in the driver’s seat!
  • Consider checking out your top two vehicles in a nighttime test drive to evaluate the headlights and cabin illumination.

Getting Behind the Wheel

When you get to the dealership, let your sales rep know which vehicles are on your mind to streamline the process. They might even recommend models that you may have missed. After the keys are in your hand, take note of the following areas:

  • Comfort: How do the seats feel? Do you have enough space?
  • Technology: Can you sync your smartphone with the tech options onboard?
  • Performance: Do you feel comfortable on both city roads and highways? Try to park. Can you navigate easily?
  • Visibility: Can you see in every direction without strain? How is the blind spot?
  • Noise: Do you hear tons of road noise and wind noise, or is the cabin quiet?

Make some notes so you can compare each vehicle when you’re done for the day.

The Next Steps

Now that you know how to test drive a car and you’ve found the right model, what’s next? Find out what to do after buying a car with Bowman Chevy in Clarkston, near Detroit and Waterford. Still have questions? Contact us at any time!

 

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Strange Car Noises

Mechanics repairing strange noise in car
If you’re used to the peace and quiet of your morning commute, then strange car noises are an alarming development. And while car grinding and squealing noises might send you into a panic, it’s important to take a moment to listen closely. These strange car noises can be a huge clue while diagnosing problems under the hood. From frayed belts to worn brakes to tire troubles, we’ve assembled a brief guide to point you in the right direction.

Squeaks and Squeals

Notice a high-pitched sound coming from the vehicle? These squeaks and squeals can indicate several problems, so pay attention to when you notice the noise.

  • Belts: If you hear a squeal when you shut down the engine, then your belt may be damaged. You might need a replacement or just a simple readjustment.
  • Brakes: Squealing brakes indicate overly worn brake pads. Be sure to stick to your scheduled maintenance to ensure that your brakes stay in top condition.
  • Bearings: If you hear a whining sound during corners, your wheel bearings may need some work. A fresh set can bring the life back into your vehicle.

Car Grinding and Rumbles

A high-pitched squeal is hard to miss, but sometimes strange car noises are a bit more subtle. See if any of these noises sound familiar!

  • Exhaust and Muffler: Notice a rumble toward the back of the car? This is often an issue with your exhaust system, but it could be the catalytic converter. Best to schedule an appointment to get your car on a hoist immediately!
  • Suspension System: If your car lets out a clunk when you hit a speed bump, it’s time to get that suspension system in line. It might be an issue with the shock absorbers.
  • Tires and Wheels: A rhythmic ticking might mean your tires and wheels need some work. The issue could be anything from low air pressure to an unbalanced set.

Schedule Your Service Today!

If you’re fed up with strange car noises, then schedule your service with Bowman Chevy today. We’re located in Clarkston, near Detroit and Waterford, and we’d be happy to bring your car back to peak performance. Still have questions? Contact us online at any time!

How to Trade in a Car

2018 chevrolet model lineup
Wondering how to trade in a car and maximize your profits? It’s easy, if you follow some key steps.

How do You Trade in a Car?

Ultimately, you want to get as much money as possible for your trade in. Accomplishing this is all about arming yourself with information:

  • Estimate your car’s trade-in value. Go online for pricing guides and third-party data.
  • Get quotes for your trade-in. Call or email local dealers for trade-in appraisal.
  • Use your new car purchase as leverage. Keep your trade-in and new car purchase negotiations separate.
  • You don’t have to trade in your car. You can always sell your car to a private party if you don’t like your offers.

When to Trade in a Car

When you don’t owe any money on your car, trading it in is a no-brainer. If you have a car loan, things can get a little dicey if you owe more than your car is worth because you’ll have to pay the difference.

Bowman Chevy Trade-In Resources

If you need help with your trade-in, car loans, or deciding how to finance your next vehicle, Bowman Chevy is here for you with a wealth of resources. We’re located in Clarkston, and we’re close to Detroit and Waterford. Contact us today!

Five Tips you Should Know for Successful Trailering

ColoradoBoatWhether you are heading up north with your boat for the weekend, or hauling a camper on a cross-country road trip, Bowman Chevrolet is here to make sure you have all the information you need before you hit the road.

1)  Know the terms

Six trailering terms everyone should know:

  • AXLE RATIO – The relationship between driveshaft revolutions per minute and the rear axle revolutions per minute. The most powerful and efficient ratio for each individual is determined by the frequency and the usual weight being hauled.
  • CURB WEIGHT – The weight of an empty vehicle, without payload or driver, with standard equipment, fuel, coolant and oil. It is also known as the vehicle weight.
  • GROSS COMBINED WEIGHT RATING (GCWR) – The maximum weight of both your loaded vehicle and your loaded trailer combined.
  • TRAILER TONGUE WEIGHT – The amount of weight put on the trailer tongue to keep it balanced for a safer driving experience.
  • GROSS TRAILER WEIGHT – The weight of a loaded trailer.
  • GROSS VEHICLE WEIGHT RATING (GVWR) -The actual weight of the entire Chevy truck or SUV and its contents, including fuel and occupants.

2) Know how to pull your own weight

Before hooking a trailer up to your truck, make sure you know the towing capacity – how much the truck can safely pull. For example, the Chevrolet Colorado can pull up to 12,500 lbs. and the Chevrolet Silverado 35000HD can pull a maximum of 23,300 lbs. When figuring out the maximum weight that your truck can carry, keep in mind the added weight of extra passengers and added equipment. The driver and the base equipment are already included in the given weights in the Chevrolet 2018 Trailering Guide.

3) Know what hitch is right for your vehicle

Picking the correct hitch and successfully setting up electronic connections between your truck and trailer is imperative. A proper hitch positively affects the way your truck handles corners and brakes. When purchasing a hitch, it is important to know how much weight your trailer can carry. The weight limit for your trailer dictates what hitch is right for your truck, whether it is a fifth-wheel hitch or a gooseneck hitch. Visit the Chevrolet 2018 Trailering Guide to determine which hitch is best for your truck.

4) Know how to properly load your trailer and complete a safety check

Once you believe your trailer is correctly attached, double check to ensure everything is secure. Test your brake lights, adjust your mirrors and always use safety chains. The chains will keep your truck connected to your trailer in the event the hitch ball becomes disconnected. When loading your cargo, 60 percent of the weight should be loaded in the front half of the trailer. Heavier items should be loaded in the front and lighter items placed near the rear. You also want to check the tire pressure on both your truck and trailer. Finally, make sure the breakaway switch is connected and working properly while checking that all the loads are secure.

5) Know that the more you drive, the easier the ride

The first couple times you trailer, it may take some time getting used to the difference in the way you drive. A slow, constant speed will help keep the trailer safely behind you at all times. With the gross combined weight rating, your truck will need more time to come to a complete stop. The trailer will need more space to turn, so prepare to make wide turns. And remember, practice makes perfect.

For additional information about trailering and towing, and specifics about each Chevy truck, check out Chevrolet’s Trailering and Towing Guide.

OEM vs. Aftermarket Parts

Assorted Auto Parts_6752780

When your car is in need of a replacement part or when you are looking to upgrade your vehicle with accessories, there are many options on the market. You may be wondering about the difference between OEM vs. aftermarket parts. While aftermarket parts may have an attractive price point, there are many reasons to opt for OEM parts from Bowman Chevrolet.

What are Aftermarket Parts?

An aftermarket part is any auto part or accessory that is not produced by the original manufacturer of the car. While aftermarket parts may be cheaper than those directly sourced from the original manufacturer, there are a few things to consider.

  • Overwhelming selection – With aftermarket parts, there could be dozens of options for even the most simple components, like spark plugs. This could make it difficult to decide on the best option, and you could end up getting stuck with a low quality part.
  • Quality can vary immensely – When compared with OEM parts, some aftermarket parts may be inferior due to the use of lower quality materials in production. Although the price tag may be attractive, sometimes you get what you pay for.
  • Lack of warranty – To ensure a low price point, may aftermarket parts come without a warranty. Some may even void a vehicle’s warranty.

Why Choose OEM Parts?

OEM parts are created by the vehicle’s manufacturer, so they are a perfect match for the parts they replace. What are some of the benefits of OEM parts?

  • Selection is easy – With OEM parts, there is usually just one type available, so you don’t have to try to determine the quality of the part you choose.
  • Assurance of quality – Because the OEM part you get is exactly the same as the one it replaces, you are familiar with its performance.
  • Warranties are included – Most OEM parts come with at least a one-year warranty against any defects.

Visit the Bowman Chevy Parts Department

At Bowman Chevy, we are proud to offer high quality auto parts to ensure your vehicle operates at peak performance for many years to come. Stop by today to browse our extensive inventory, or set up a service appointment for anything from routine maintenance to extensive repairs from the comfort of your home.