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Bunge's Automotive Blog

March 01, 2018 @ 12:00am

http://bungestire.com/sites/bungestire.com/assets/images/blog-folder/Newport_Whitepit_Lane_pot_hole.JPGOf the four seasons, winter is easily the most brutal on your car. From the damage caused by road salt to the hurt those potholes can put on your suspension, it’s safe to say that every part of your car can take a beating when the snow flies. Worse, it’s often not immediately apparent that there’s any damage, so a small problem can easily become a big problem if you’re not careful. Here are three common problems caused by winter driving and how to recognize them this spring.

Not only does snow cover hazards on the road, snow plows can carve out big chunks of asphalt and concrete, leading to potholes that can rattle your teeth before you even see them. Hitting a pot hole with enough force can damage your tires, even causing flats. This is especially true because cold weather can cause your tires to lose pressure, making them more susceptible to damage. But, more often, the pothole will knock your car out of alignment.

The tricky part about alignment issues is they often don’t show up until there’s lasting damage. If you feel your steering wheel pulling to one side, even slightly, or if you notice abnormal wear patterns on your tires, bring your car in immediately. (An example of an abnormal wear pattern would be excessive wear to the tire’s inside or outside edge.) Not only can misaligned tires be permanently damaged, your car could be damaged too.

The next issue is something you can see easily: Rust and corrosion c

January 31, 2018 @ 12:00am

Three ways to keep your windshield clear this winter.Winter can mean an icy windshield, especially if you have to park outside at home or work, and that can mean limited visibility, especially if your defroster isn’t working the way it should be. When a defroster isn’t working, the moisture and heat inside your car can freeze to the inside of your windshield, leaving you in serious trouble. Here are three reasons why your defroster might fail this winter, and what you can do to fix it.

Sometimes, a malfunctioning defroster can be due to something as simple as a stuck switch or button, or a blown fuse. It sounds silly, but one of the best things you can do if your defroster isn’t working is make sure that your switches—whether mechanical or electronic—are functioning properly. These tend to be easy fixes you can do at home.

When you turn on the defrost, all you’re really doing is transferring the hot air that’d be coming out of your vents to your windshield so the air can remove moisture and warm the glass. Your car does this by controlling the air with a blend door. This one is pretty easy to check; just use your hands. When this door is faulty or broken, hot air will still come out of your vents, but not out of your defroster. This can be a quick fix; however, some vehicles require the removal of the whole dash in order to replace these parts.

If you’re not getting any hot air from your defrost, it might be a sign of something a little more serious. Your defro

December 28, 2017 @ 12:00am

Three ways to Help Your Teen Find the Perfect CarAs a new year begins, many car dealerships are trying to clear old inventory to make way for the new. That means that if you’re in the market for that first car for your teenager, now could be a great time to start looking. Here are three tips to help you get the most bang for your buck.

First, and before you set foot on a car lot, set clear expectations with your young driver. Be sure to answer questions like, “Who is going to pay for repairs and oil changes?” What are your expectations for how the car will be used? Is it strictly a “school-and-back” vehicle or does your child have the freedom to travel wherever, whenever they want? It’s also a good idea to set a “passenger limit” on the car to minimize distractions, and to agree to a “no cell phone policy.

Next, set expectations as to what kind of car they can drive. Every kid wants the fastest, top down model they can get but keep this in mind: Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among American teens, so safety is the top priority. A mid-size sedan offers a solid combination of space and performance, while still having enough mass and standard safety features to be a good option. Try to find a car with no fewer than six airbags; that means the two standard up front plus some side impact airbags. Also, if you go with an older model, make sure it has anti-lock brakes. Finally, especially if your child has a lead foot, look for a smaller engi

December 01, 2017 @ 12:00am

http://bungestire.com/sites/bungestire.com/assets/images/blog-folder/CarAndBoat.jpgWe can’t all have a truck or heavy duty vehicle, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use your car to do what the big trucks do. Whether it’s taking your camper south to get away from winter weather or loading up presents to take to the kids, follow these tips to tow safely this winter.

The first thing to do is check your owner’s manual and make sure your vehicle is cleared to tow. Here, you’ll also find out how much weight your vehicle can safely handle. A word of advice: Your car is likely able to tow more than what’s listed in the manual but DO NOT go over the posted limit. While it may be possible to haul more, it can cause severe damage to many parts of your car, from your tires to your engine.

Next, check the laws in your area and make sure you’re compliant, especially with home-built trailers. (Your department of transportation or police department home page are good places to start research online.) Every trailer needs a wiring hookup to make sure your trailer conveys your taillights, brakes and turn signals to the drivers behind you. Some cars come with a hookup and some need to have one installed. Your manual will help figure this out.

Make sure your vehicle has a hitch. If not, hitches are easy to find online and in many stores. If possible, order a “No Drill” hitch. If you can find a “No Drill” solution, it makes installing the hitch a DIY project that won’t take much time

October 31, 2017 @ 12:00am

http://bungestire.com/sites/bungestire.com/assets/images/blog-folder/blackice.jpgWith temperatures dropping, there’s a whole lot of changes you can see on the roads, from falling leaves to the first few flakes of snow. But the real danger is a change you often can’t see: It’s black ice season, and that can mean serious trouble if you aren’t prepared. Here’s three tips to keep you and your family safe.

Before you get in your car, you can prepare yourself for safer driving by knowing the low temperature of the previous night, and by checking the outdoor temperature. Also, if there has been an extended period of below freezing temperatures, be on your guard on the road. Make sure your windshield is free from coatings and debris—that awful white buildup of road salt, for example—that could potentially screen your view. And, when driving during the day, wear sunglasses as they’ll allow you to spot hazards.

Black ice can form even when the air temperature is above freezing. When streets and sidewalks are freezing, moisture turns to ice almost instantly on contact, and it’s ice that has no air bubbles, making it extremely hard to see. But you can anticipate black ice. It’s most prevalent in the early morning and late evening, which can coincide with rush hours, so give yourself extra space. You can also assume that shaded roads and bridges will be likely spots for black ice as the road temperatures will be cooler.

If you do feel your car lose traction with the road,