Grand Rapids Ford & Mazda Dealer News

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?With summer officially arriving this month, it's time to think ahead on your upcoming West Michigan adventures! Whether that means spontaneous trips to the lakeshore, long weekends at a campground, or even a week up in the UP, there are easy things you can do to get your vehicle ready. Check out our quick summer adventure guide for tips on keeping your vehicle clean and saving money on gas!

Tips For Keeping Your Vehicle Fresh and Clean

One of the biggest challenges on summer road trips is keeping your vehicle interior free of sand and dirt, especially with kiddos in the back seat. We found a few neat tricks you can try out this season:

Use a plastic, resealable cereal container as a wastebasket: Take the entire lid off, fit a plastic grocery bag over the container, and replace the lid. These often have a small, resealable opening on the lid to allow you to pour cereal without removing the whole top. You can use this opening as the "lid" of the trash can. You can store extra grocery bag "liners" at the bottom of the container too.

Bring a laundry basket with you to the beach: The best way to keep sand out of your floor mats, upholstery, and everywhere else is to leave most of it at the beach. Once everyone changes back into street clothes, throw everything with sand on it into a plastic laundry basket and give it a good shake. Most of the sand will come out of the sides, and the mess will be contained until you arrive back home. See it in action here!

Bring baby powder and a washtub for extra sand removal: Getting sand out of clothes is half the battle. Sand stuck to your skin will inevitably end up all over the place too. Use baby powder to absorb moisture on your skin and the sand will fall right off. You can also bring along a plastic washtub as a portable foot bath before getting in the vehicle!

Invest in All-Weather Floor Mats: These aren't just for slushy snow! When you get home, you can easily pull these out of your vehicle and shake the sand, dirt, and debris right off. You can also get cargo liners made with the same material to go under that laundry basket of sandy clothes in the trunk! If you have a Ford or Mazda, Borgman provides mats that are tailor-made for your vehicle too.

Mitigate that "lake water" or "wet dog" smell: When rolling the windows down isn't enough, you can make your own air fresheners that fit right in the cupholders! If you have extra candles around the house, another "summer car hack" we saw involves poking holes in the top of a mason jar with a hammer and a large nail, then putting chunks of leftover candle wax inside. After your vehicle heats up in the summer sun, the wax melts - filling your vehicle with a fresh scent.

How To Maximize Your Fuel Efficiency

With gasoline prices soaring, you might be wondering how to spend less on fuel for your trip. Some of the things you can do involve making sure your vehicle is running its best, but others are habits you can adopt to curb your fuel consumption on long trips.

Make sure your tires are inflated to spec: Tires low on air will form more friction with the ground, meaning they require more force to turn. While on the surface this sounds like a good thing, it also has a negative impact on your handling and will, over time, damage your tires. Make sure your tires are inflated to the pressure marked on the driver's side door sill for optimal safety and fuel efficiency.

Turn on your fuel economy display: For vehicles that have one, your current estimated miles-per-gallon display will show you how much fuel you're using from moment to moment. While it's important to keep your eyes on the road, having this info plainly visible at all times will help you see when you're using the most fuel. Valuable information if you're being fuel-conscious!

Avoid "jackrabbit" starts and stops: Your vehicle uses the most fuel when moving from a stop. Getting up to speed gradually will consume less fuel than taking off like a rocket. On the flip side, allowing your vehicle to coast for a while before coming to a stop saves on fuel too.

Slow down: If you plan your trip and allow enough time for travel, what's the rush? Once you go faster than about 70mph, your fuel economy will suffer. Try to keep a steady speed or better yet, set the cruise control. This feature gives your pedal foot a break on longer highway trips and saves fuel in the process. Just be sure to take on hills (up and down) manually for the best performance.

Avoid "Fuel-Saving" Products: When you're on a mission to save fuel, you may see devices (or worse, fuel additives) that you can use to boost your mpg. The vast majority of these do absolutely nothing for fuel economy and could damage your vehicle, and the ones that do work only offer minimal savings. We're willing to bet the cost of these will not be offset by your actual fuel savings, so it's best to protect your vehicle and avoid them altogether.

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Get a "Pre-Flight Check" at the Borgman Service Center in Grand Rapids, MI

While there are things you can do to ensure a successful summer trip, there are other things best left to the experts. The pros at the Borgman Service Center know exactly what to look for before you set out and will ensure your vehicle is in tip-top shape for the trip.

For example, if you're looking to save on fuel, we can check to make sure your air intake and filter are clear, your fuel/air mixture is correct, and more. The EPA states that failed oxygen sensor can reduce your fuel efficiency by up to 40% or more, and we have the experience to detect issues like this as well.

Need to make an appointment? Use our easy Online Scheduler to plan your visit, then head over to our Service Coupons for the latest offers and rebates. If you have any questions, feel free to Contact Us. We've been keeping West Michigan moving since 1960, and it'd be our pleasure to serve you. Come see why we're the Best in the West!

Categories: News, Service, Parts