Race to Win: 2014 Corvette Stingray Convertible Sweepstakes

Would you like to own a Chevy Corvette Stingray Convertible? That’s a rhetorical question. But how? Purchasing a new Corvette Stingray may not be in your budget right now, but we’re here to tell you about another way. Two words – Corvette Sweepstakes.

 

Corvette Stingray Convertible
Win the 2014 Corvette Stingray Convertible through Chevy’s Race to Win Corvette Sweepstakes

Chevrolet is giving you a chance to win a 2014 Corvette Stingray Convertible…and more! If the Stingray wasn’t enough to reel you in, you may want to look at the total prize package.

The prize package includes: The 2014 Corvette Stingray Convertible, Trip for two to the 2015 Rolex 24 at Daytona, travel plus accommodations and $500, and a 2-day high-performance driving class with Bondurant Driving School.

Now that you know everything that’s included in the Corvette Sweepstakes, you’ll need to know how to enter. Head to RaceToWinCorvette.com, enter your name and email address and voila! It’s as simple as that. Just two easy steps and you could win a 2014 Corvette Stingray Convertible and a whole host of great prizes.

You’re probably thinking you don’t stand a chance to winning the sweepstakes. To quote a great winner, Wayne Gretzky, “You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.” So go ahead. Take your shot. Who knows you may end up with a 2014 Corvette Stingray Convertible.

Chevy Headlights, Taillights, and You

The winter months mean cold temperatures and slick streets, but they also mean shorter periods of daylight. During this time it’s important to know some signs of wear on your Chevy headlights and taillights. These lights not only help you see better and further, they also help people see you.

Cold temperatures affect your battery, so make sure you have a strong battery. This will help keep your headlights and taillights strong. Another aspect that is often overlooked is cleaning your headlights and taillights. While some may not wash their vehicle as frequently during the winter months, keeping those headlights and taillights clean will increase your visibility.

In the event that your headlights and/or taillights have gone out replacing them in a timely manner is critically. Not only do you want to have full visibility again, but you don’t want to keep non-working parts in your vehicle. A dead bulb may create excess corrosion and damage the socket or wiring. Each Chevy vehicle is a bit different in how the lights are housed, so make sure to check your owner’s manual to find out the specifics of you vehicle. Or you can always take your vehicle to your local Chevy service center and have the lights replaced by a Certified Service Technician with genuine GM parts.

Your headlights and taillights are an extension of your eyes on the road. Make sure you take care of them so that you stay safe this winter and throughout the year.

And HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Travel Safely This Thanksgiving

If you haven’t been on the roads leading up to Thanksgiving, traffic can be hectic. Thanksgiving is one of the busy travel days of the year. According to ccn.com roughly 43.4 million Americans will travel this Thanksgiving; a number that is slightly down from last year.

While that number may be down, that still a lot of people on the roads and in the air. We’re here to give you pointers to stay safe and have a great time with loved ones. Check out our top 5 driving tips.

Make sure you hit the road early. Speeding and hurried driving can distract you from the road, by placing more focus on the clock and where you need to be.

Plan your route in advance. Know where you’re going and how you plan on getting there. This will help you avoid looking too hard for signs and at your GPS. If you’re going to use a GPS mount it on your dash, so your eyes don’t have to travel far from the road.

Be mindful of the weather. It’s late November everyone. Snow, rain, ice, sleet, anything can happen. Check the weather before you leave and see what you’re driving into.

Try to travel before Wednesday. Because the holiday falls on a Thursday, many people leave Wednesday making it the biggest travel day. With traffic from those who have to work on Wednesday mixed with those traveling the road can get congested quickly.

Always back emergency equipment. We hope you never have an accident or get stranded anywhere; especially not during the holidays, but if you do we want to help you be prepared.

Travel Safely and Happy Thanksgiving from Stalker Chevrolet.

Winterizing Your Car – Essential Items

In our last blog we discussed winterizing your car from a car care prospective. But there are more steps to take to make sure your car is properly winterize.

While we certainly hope your car always runs smoothly and you never have any complications, we want to do our best to make sure you’re prepared.

For starters make sure you have a blanket, extra set of warm clothes, and boots in your trunk for an emergency. Iowa winters can get pretty chilly, and if you’re stuck on the side of the road waiting on help that time will go by much faster if you can remain warm.

Cold Weather Car Breakdown
Keeping Key Items in Your Car Can Keep You From Being Left in the Cold This Winter

Next make sure you have an emergency kit. This doesn’t pertain to just the winter months, many of these items should be in your car at all times.

  • Flares
  • Radio
  • Engine Oil
  • Windshield washer fluid
  • Antifreeze
  • Flashlight
  • Batteries – Batteries will get cold and lose a bit of life over the course of the winter. Bring back some of the juice by placing the battery between your elbow or underneath your arm for 30 seconds to warm them up.
  • First aid kit
  • Sunglasses
  • Rubberbands
  • Bungee Cords
  • Spare Cash – 10 to 20 dollars can stretch when you in a tight spot.
  • Multitool – A small handy device to do a variety of task.

The Boy Scout motto of, “Always be prepared”, applies when dealing with winterizing your car.

We hope our tips on packing essential items and winterizing car care were helpful. Drive safe this winter and look out for more information from Stalker Chevrolet. Remember to Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter.

Winterize Your Car – National Car Care Month

As much as it may pain some of you to hear (and delight others) winter is almost here. One way to start preparing for the cold and snowy months is by winterizing your car.

With October being National Car Care Month it’s a great reminder to get you car ready early for the months ahead.

Whether you decide to bring your vehicle in to Stalker Chevy and have our Certified Service technicians take care of your car or if you want to do an inspection of your own, here are a few things you should make sure to get checked.

Roads get slick and conditions are less than perfect for driving during our winters. Make sure your tires are properly inflated and have the proper amount of tread. If you do a decent amount of driving on roads that don’t get cleared quite as much you may want to consider snow tires or ones with extra grip.

Even if your tires are gripping the road just fine they aren’t the only thing responsible for helping you stop in a safe manner. A thorough inspection of your brake system is important before winter hits. Brake lines, rotors, pads, drums, fluid, are all critical components to keeping you safe on snowy or icy roads.

The cold weather can do damage to your engine just by it being too cold. Make sure your car has the proper level of antifreeze, as well as other engine fluids like power steering, radiator, transmission, and windshield washer fluids.

While making sure your car can warm up and run safely and efficiently is great, it’s always good to make sure you can stay warm in your vehicle too. Make sure to get your HVAC systems checked out. No one wants to ride around in a frozen car all winter.

Be sure to have your defrosters and wiper blades inspected too. These are often items that get overlooked, but you can’t drive if you can’t see (Another reason not to text and drive).

And lastly check your battery, belts and hoses. Cold weather can do a number on all of these items. Cold weather is known to drain batteries more rapidly and being stuck in the cold is the worst. Belts and hoses typically have a pretty long shelf life, but you don’t want to ignore them. Especially in the winter when a break or crack can really leave you stranded.

While this takes care of most of the mechanical side of winterizing your car, there are some additional things you can do to further prepare your vehicle.

Check out our next blog installment for more information on how to fully winterize your car!

How to Prepare Your Car for the Last Days of Summer

Summer is very nearly at its end.  You might have noticed the nights getting a little bit cooler, a few more leaves falling from the trees, football getting back into season, schools going back into session, and so on.  Autumn is right around the corner, but that doesn’t mean that we are entirely out of the woods when it comes to late-summer heat.

Prepare Your Car For the Summer
Summer Road Trips with the Top Down

There’s nothing worse than sliding into a car that’s been broiling all afternoon in the mid-day heat, but summer weather can do more than make you sweaty and give you a bad case of butt-sticking-against-leather-seat syndrome.  Neglecting certain basic maintenance needs can lead to decreased performance and lead to an uncomfortable ride all around.

As pointed out in a video from HowStuffWorks, step number one is making sure that your coolant system is up to snuff.  Check your radiator for contaminants and make sure that antifreeze levels are adequate.  Ensure that the coolant fan is functional, as its function is extremely vital to the engine’s temperature level.  Also, check the radiator core for rot, belts and hoses for cracks and leaks, and other components of the vehicle’s cooling system.  This will lead to better performance, less possibility of overheating, and fully functional A/C.

Furthermore, on days when the weather gets hot, be certain to protect your car from the heat by parking in the natural shade of a tree or purchasing a windshield sun shade.  It is of particular importance to not leave children or dogs in hot vehicles, not even for short periods of time.  What’s more, parking in the shade actually promotes better fuel economy, leading to more savings for drivers at the pump.

Park in the Shade to Improve Fuel Economy
Park in the Shade to Improve Fuel Economy

The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) also recommends changing to a specific set of summer tires to combat the hot asphalt.  These tires should have a shorter sidewall and less-aggressive tread.  For those not looking to keep season-specific tires, it is nonetheless important to ensure that your all-season tires are inflated, rotated, and aligned properly.

And here’s something: did you know that a cleaner car will be cooler than a dirty one?  A car that shines deflects more of the sun’s rays than one that doesn’t.  A dusty car is more likely to absorb the sun’s heat.  All the more reason to take advantage of that sunshine while you can, run your car or truck through a car wash, and make that baby shine something fierce.

Whether summer or autumn, winter or spring, the folks at Stalker Chevrolet are here to help.  Stop in for more maintenance tips to help prepare your ride for the upcoming season.

Common Car Myths

Car myths are something new and old drivers struggle with alike.  New drivers will hear something and not know any better to dismiss it, and older drivers have been known to hold onto folklore about their vehicles for decades.  We’re here to dispel some of the more common car myths out there.Red Car Insurance Myth

  • Reds Cars Cost More to Insure– This has most likely developed from people mistaking correlation for causation.  A lot of sports cars are red and sports cars cost more to insure.  At no point does an insurance company ask for your car color when giving you a quote.
  • The 3,000-Mile Oil Change– This is quite possibly the most widely known (and often times accepted) myth out there.  Today, vehicles should get an oil change around every 7,500 miles, but getting one more often won’t hurt, and if you drive in extreme conditions or tow frequently, you’ll want to schedule service for an oil change more often.
  • Vehicles that run on regular benefit from premium gasoline– Years ago, only premium fuel contained detergents that helped to clean the engine, and cars would benefit from the occasional premium fill-up.  Today, the EPA requires detergent in every grade of fuel, so stick with your recommended octane level.
  • Chevy AvalancheLet your engine warm up before driving– In the winter, this can be an appealing option, especially if you have a remote-starter, but modern vehicles actually warm up much faster when they are being driven.  Vehicles operate at their highest efficiency when they’re warm, so letting them idle in the driveway cold will cost you some gas.

Check out Cars.com’s list for additional myths, and be sure to visit us today at Stalker Chevrolet with any other vehicle-related questions you might have!

The Return of the TrailBlazer: Fact or Fiction

Remember the good, old days when the clock would strike five, you’d pick up your suitcase in a hurry, and you’d scramble out of the office to find your beloved Chevy TrailBlazer waiting for you, sitting like a faithful dog right where you left it. That TrailBlazer meant everything to you, because it was an escape—it was an escape from the office, from housework, from the monotony of everyday life. It was your chance for spirited adventure, allowing you to blaze new trails (ba dum chh) as you and the family took the SUV out for a camping trip in the mountains, a fun day at the beach, or maybe even a vacation to Walley World.

2013 Chevy TrailBlazer
2013 Chevy TrailBlazer -Available in Brazil, Philippines, and Thialand

There is hope, however, for a return of the TrailBlazer in 2014. According to Edmunds.com, an industry source that is “familiar with Chevrolet’s product plans” indicated that Chevy will be reintroducing a version of the TrailBlazer to the U.S. market next year. Whether it will still bear the TrailBlazer moniker is up for debate.

In fact, whether the TrailBlazer is actually going to make a return at all is up for debate. While the car experts at Edmunds maintain that it is a distinct possibility that the TrailBlazer, which is currently built in Thailand for Thailand, as well as for Brazil and the Philippines, will be making a reappearance, Chevrolet has completely refuted this notion.

In an email to Edmunds, Chevy spokesman, Mike Albano, said, “We have no plans to add another SUV/crossover to the portfolio. We are pleased with the way Equinox, Traverse, and Tahoe/Suburban are performing in the marketplace.”

Sounds pretty final, but we’ll keep our fingers crossed that Chevrolet is just pulling the old wool over our eyes on this one, because we could sure use some more trailblazing adventure from our beloved SUV of yesteryear.

What do you think? Is the return of the TrailBlazer a load of bull, or is Edmunds onto something? Discuss your thoughts below, or better yet—come in to Stalker Chevrolet today and plead your case for the return of the TrailBlazer.

Financing A Car

Buying a car is expensive. Most of us don’t just have an extra 20 to 30 thousand dollars lying around for such a purchase. While some do, the majority of car buying is done with the help of financing. This means taking out a loan to purchase your new car and paying back that money over a period of time. But before you dive head first into what could be a debt issue. It’s important to do your due diligence.

When you’re looking at auto financing it begins with your personal budget. How much can you actually afford to spend right now? How much will you be able to afford in the future? How big of a monthly payment can you afford/are you willing to make? How long do you want to be paying for this vehicle? Will you be looking to make another major purchase while still paying off this loan? These questions and others like it will help you make an educated decision.

Another item you’ll want to be aware of is your credit score. If you aren’t already aware of your score, there are several free services and calculators that will help you get a better understanding. Your credit score will help you learn the type of rates you can expect, as well the amount you’ll be eligible to borrow.

Once you have an idea about your credit score, it’s time to see the type of auto financing rates being offered. The interest rate is the cost of the money that you’re borrowing. Many institutions offer free online quotes for you to get a better understanding of the amount full you’ll be paying back. When you’re looking for an institution to it’s important to read the details about repayment and the options offer to you.

With your wealth of knowledge you’ll be ready to find the car of your dreams, or at very least a car of your daydreams that won’t break your bank. And since you’ve armed yourself with knowledge, you’ll step into the car dealership and confidently and move smoothly through the purchasing process.

Continue to check our blog – more car buying topics to come.

Cops in Dubai Cruise Around in Camaro SS

The Chevy Camaro SS has be a global vehicle for many decades, but it was recently announced to be used by the Dubai Police force.

Dubai is one of the most expensive cities in the world. It has become center of tourism for Middle East, due to its propensity for skyscrapers, including the world’s tallest building, man-made islands, and amazing shopping.

Now Dubai will also be the first Middle Eastern police force to use the Camaro SS.  The SS features a 6.2L V8 that goes from 0-60 in under 4.7 seconds.

“The Camaro is highly regarded around the world. It is the ideal car for Dubai Police as we look to upgrade our vehicles to meet the Emirate’s world renowned standards in safety and security,” said Dubai Deputy Police Chief Major General Khamis Mattar Al Mazeina.

One of the most popular vehicles of all time, the Chevrolet Camaro has become a major success in the Middle East. In fact, in this years’ February edition of Evo Middle East magazine, the 2012 Camaro ZL1 was awarded “Muscle Car of the Year 2012”.

Pop in to Stalker Chevrolet to check out the new Camaro. Heck, even take it for a test drive. You’ll see why the lawmen of Dubai decided to add the Camaro SS to their fleet.