Category Archives for "New Car Buying Oswego IL"

Buying a car for college/ high school student

It feels like yesterday that your son or daughter was taking their first steps, and last month they walked across the graduation stage! Although college feels like the most likely next step, making sure that they get there safely is often not a priority. Making sure that our new college students have a safe vehicle to travel in puts our minds at ease. Here are some things to think about when purchasing that vehicle for them:

1. Be sure to be informed about the vehicle that you are purchasing. Go in with some research for the vehicle. You can research the competitive prices and information on Autotrader, Kelley blue book, and nada.com. The more knowledgeable you are about your purchase, the less likely you will be to pay more than you need to for it!

2. What will the vehicle primarily be used for? A brand new vehicle for a new college student may not be the best purchase. Remember a vehicle starts depreciating in value the moment you drive it off the lot. So practical vehicles for young drivers would be low maintenance, and dependable vehicles. Trucks don’t make the most ideal purchases since they are bigger and often have terrible gas mileage.

3. If buying used, remember to research the history of the vehicle. Go to the website: VehicleHistory.gov (the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System). Also make sure to read about “lemon laws” in your state. It never hurts to be informed!

4. Make sure not to commit yourself or your student to more than 15-20% of your monthly budget on the vehicle. This includes the car payment, insurance, gas, repairs, registration fees and maintenance. You never want to get yourself into a situation that you cannot afford. So 15-20% of your income is a good standard.

5. Don’t forget that a lot of students may be eligible for good student discounts on insurance plans, and also safe driver discounts. Anyway to save some money, is great!

So enjoy those steps around your now empty home, knowing that you have made smart choices on your new college student’s vehicle. Nothing is better than having peace of mind!

Stop Stone Chips and Scratches On Your New Vehicle!

clear bra paint protection film oswego il

At AutoSmart, we use XPEL Ultimate, which is the best self-healing protection film on the market. XPEL protection films offer a wide selection of films to protect your vehicle from paint damage.

This film sheds contaminants like no other film. It combines the clarity of a clear film with the defense of an elastomeric polymer that self heals.  The film protects your vehicle from rocks, bug acids, salt, oils, gravel, tree sap, bird droppings and magnesium chloride.

The film will heal quickly and will continue to do so over time as long as scratches don’t penetrate the film. The average time for a scratch to heal is about an hour, but if the temperature is warmer the healing time will accelerate.

There are many kits for each vehicle. Whether you want a rocker panel or your whole vehicle covered, XPEL has a kit for your needs.

If you’re interested in vehicle paint protection, call AutoSmart for a quote. Our staff will discuss your options, go over any questions or concerns you may have, and schedule your appointment.

After your XPEL Ultimate Film is installed, wait 48 hours before washing it. After that setting time, any normal car soap can be used to wash it. However, in order to prolong the life of your film, we suggest regularly washing, waxing and sealing the vehicle. Unlike other films you can wax and seal your vehicle without causing any damage to this film.

XPEL is so confident that its product is the best paint protection film on the market that it comes with a 10 year warranty. This warranty covers peeling, cracking, yellowing, hazing and staining. If any of these occurs on the vehicle, XPEL will reimburse both the film and labor costs.

For more information, go to www.AutoSmartNetwork.com or call our office at (630) 554-2285.

In case of emergency, what do I put in an Auto Survival Kit?

The key to surviving an emergency is preparation.  You may not have been a Boy Scout, but that does not mean you are at the mercy of fate.  While watching episodes of Bear Grylls may give you some entertaining comfort, it is unlikely he will be there to hold your hand.  Imagine yourself on a trip to an unfamiliar location.  The car dies, or you’ve slipped into a ditch.  You pull out your cell phone and the battery is dead or there is no coverage.  When things start going wrong, the items we take for granted tend to fail us.  Having a simple plan allows us to adapt and move forward.  Our survival kit will be the key. 

Safe operation of vehicle.

  • Window scraper to remove snow and ice.
  • Keep your gas tank at least half full.
  • Tell someone where you are going, the expected route, and idea of when you plan on being back.

Simple roadside breakdown. 

  1. Safety Triangles and or flares.  This will allow other motorists to see you and avoid an accident.
  2. Jumper cables.  The extreme cold weather can quickly run down a battery.  Having cables and have you back on the road in minutes.
  3. Traction pads, old carpeting, cat litter.  If you can get some traction, skidding into a ditch might not require a tow.
  4.  Shovel.  Removing snow will go more quickly.
  5. Chain or tow cable.  A Good Samaritan may show up and be willing to give you a pull.
  6. Flashlight.  Makes life much easier when the sun goes down.
  7. Extra fuses, fan belts, duct tape

Extended breakdown, now what?

  1. Florescent Flag to hang on the antenna or window allowing rescue crews to find you with greater ease.
  2. First Aid Kit.
  3. Prescription drugs
  4. Water
  5. Blankets and sleeping bags.
  6. Winter clothing, hats, gloves, extra coat.
  7. Non perishable food, granola bars, candy bars, instant soup.
  8. Tin can or small cooking pot.
  9. Lighter, waterproof matches.
  10. Candles.  Lighting a candle can provide additional warmth to a car raising the temperature as much as 4.5 degrees.  The candle can also be a heat source for turning snow into water.

Other tips:  Stay with your car.  It provides shelter and it is easier for rescue crews to locate a stationary object.  To add visibility at night for the rescue crew, leave the dome light on.  In an effort to conserve your battery, only use hazard flashers when someone approaches.  The tail pipe must be free of snow to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.  Running the auto for ten minutes an hour and leaving the window cracked during operation of the engine should reduce exposure to exhaust fumes.  A hand held crank radio or a weather radio would give you an idea of future weather reports.  A cell phone adapter for your car would allow you to recharge and make that 911 call.   Once on the phone with 911, stay on the line.  Do not hang up!  If you absolutely need to abandon the car, leave a note with your contact information and your planned route of departure.  Leave the note on the windshield so it can be easily found. 

What is an Auto Concierge service?

Auto concierge services work for the auto buyer and act as an advocate for the buyer.  They serve as a fact finder, negotiator, and personal assistant.  The concierge, just like a five star hotel concierge, researches the customer’s needs and desire for a new vehicle.  The concierge service may take several forms. 

Phone consultations are available at an hourly rate; have your questions prepared in advance.  The client gives the concierge service a list of their needs, wants and desires.  Is the car available with a V8, standard transmission, Bose® sound system, with anti-lock brakes? 

The concierge will find, determine and provide you current MSRP prices and the dealerships/manufacture’s current price and incentives.  The concierge calls their contacts in the auto dealing community requesting prices and availability of the vehicle in question.  The concierge will provide you with the information that dealers don’t want their customers to know. 

Put yourself in the driver’s seat.  Knowledge is power.  For the time sensitive client who understands that time is money, the concierge will locate your new vehicle and take care of every last detail. Whether you have a vehicle to trade, or looking to finance, they can arrange everything. 

Premiere services would take care of every detail and a concierge consultant would meet you at the dealership to walk you through the entire process. This is the hands on approach that will assure that you get the best deal.  Few clients enjoy haggling over price.  Some will give away their trade to avoid personally haggling over prices. 

Now they have an advocate to negotiate on their behalf.  Upon arriving at an agreeable price, the concierge then books the appointment for dealer to meet with the client.  The necessary paperwork is completed and the client is usually in and out of the dealership with their new vehicle in less than an hour.  For the time pressured professional, the concierge service leverages time and dealer contacts to save time and money.