Archive for September, 2017

New Truck? Listen Up!

Saturday, September 30th, 2017
new truck

You can’t deny the power of a good truck. This is South Texas, after all! And whether your truck is for work or for play, you’ll want to get it right the first time. Before you hit the dealership in search of the truck of your dreams, there are a few things to sort out. First and foremost, what exactly are you looking for? What you’ll be using your truck for will play a large role in which truck is best for you.

Engine Size

How much power do you need? Size and fuel economy both play a role in what kind of engine will suffice. If you’ll be using your truck to haul heavy loads, opt for a powerful V8 engine. If easy driving in a compact truck is what you’re looking for, a V4 engine may do just fine.

Safety Features

As with any vehicle, safety features are important. Some of today’s trucks come with more than ever before. From blind spot warning systems, to automatic braking and lane departure warnings, good driving and high-tech safety are your best lines of defense against an accident.

Cab and Bed Size

What are your plans for your new truck? Evaluating cab and bed size are important for planning ahead. If you plan on driving your family around, a larger cab size is a wise idea. If your new truck is purely for hauling and towing, a large bed will ensure you’re ready for whatever lies ahead. Pay close attention to the specs when deciding which Truck is right for you.


Are you a fan of manual or automatic?

The best choice for you will depend on the driving conditions you plan on navigating. If you’re the type of driver who spends plenty of time in traffic, an automatic transmission may be your best bet. On the flip side, a manual transmission can help improve your control over your engine. Although manual transmissions aren’t as effective for towing, they can certainly make for a funner ride.

Not sure where to begin? Our team of skilled sales professionals can help! Visit one of our local Ed Payne dealerships to view our latest selection of Ford, Chevy and GMC trucks, plus so much more! Our South Texas auto dealerships are filled with a wide variety of new and used models, so you can be sure when you visit Ed Payne, you’ll find just what you’re looking for. Stop on by and visit one of our Rio Grande Valley Dodge or GMC dealerships today! 


Get Geared Up for the Season with These Easy Fall Car Care Tips

Friday, September 29th, 2017
fall car care

Fall is finally here! Are you prepared? And more importantly, is your car prepared?

Your wardrobe isn’t the only thing that could use a makeover this fall. Your vehicle, whether new or used, could definitely benefit from a bit of a prepping as the autumn season rolls in. Hot summer weather can impact your ride in unforeseen ways, and you want me to be sure your ride is ready to go for the coming months. For this reason and several others, show your car a little extra love before the leaves begin to fall.

Luckily, there is plenty you can do to ensure a smooth ride this September! Follow these easy fall car care tips to get your vehicle in tip-top shape.

Wiper Care

Random storms throughout summer time can put a strain on your wipers, and you want them to be in excellent shape in the event of a busy storm season. You should typically replace your wiper blades every six months, and the end of summer is a great time to do it. Insufficient wipers are one thing you definitely don’t want to gamble on. This is one of the best fall car care tips there is.

Battery Fluid

Scorching temperatures can impact your car battery by causing its fluid to evaporate. Car batteries typically last up to 4 years, but with our South Texas heat as hot as ever, your battery may drain sooner than expected. Have your battery checked to ensure it’s ready to take on those fall drives.

Light Check

Do a thorough inspection of your headlights, taillights and brake lights. Replace those that have burnt out, and feel free to give them a polish so that they look and work their best.

Oil Change

Oil changes are important for several reasons. You should change your oil a minimum of 3 times a year to be safe, and the start of fall will suffice. It’s definitely a job you can do yourself, or leave it to the professionals if you wish. You won’t regret it!

In the market for a new or used vehicle, or need a bit of service for your current vehicle? Your Ed Payne Rio Grande Valley car lots have everything you need to drive away in your dream car today. Whether you’re looking for a used or new vehicle, a car, truck or SUV, our Rio Grande Valley car lots are filled with a friendly team to answer all your questions. Visit us or give us a call today! 

Make Your Vehicle Last: Tire Balancing and Other Auto Care Tips for a Longer Car Life

Friday, September 29th, 2017
tire balancing

Make Your Vehicle Last: Auto Care Tips for a Longer Car Life

Eating healthy, not smoking, hitting the gym a few times a week — these are the cornerstones of a healthy life. But when it comes to your car, are you really doing everything you can to make it last? Being a good car owner means more than filling it up with gas as needed. There are plenty of other steps you can take to show your car a little extra love. From regular washes, to routine oil changes and alignments, don’t overestimate your vehicle’s ability to run itself.

A few auto care tips you can utilize this season include:

Regular Maintenance

Just like in healthcare, preventative care is important for your vehicle. Taking measures to properly care for your car before a major incident happens is key. In fact, something as simple as washing it regularly can have lasting effects on the health of your car. From punctual oil changes, to transmission flushes every now and then, all these culminate into a happy, healthy vehicle for you and your family.

Tire Balancing

You may often overlook a good tire balance as an extra, rather than a necessity. The truth is that tire balancing serves the greater purpose of keeping your wheels flowing smoothly, thus preserving the inner workings of your vehicle. Consider a tire balancing if you feel heavy vibrations when driving your vehicle. You’ll want to get this fixed before it turns into a major problem later down the road. Literally!

Brake Replacements

If you’ve recently stepped on your brakes and been met with an annoying screeching sound, a brake pad replacement may be in order. Aside from the danger associated with faulty brakes, you could be doing harm to your vehicle by not replacing them. Speak to your mechanic if you suspect something is amiss. Better safe than sorry!

Your local Payne dealership can get your car ready to hit the road. Visit our blog for more auto care tips, or call to book an appointment with our service department. You can also stop by one of our valley car dealerships for a close look at our new and used vehicles.

Car Care 101: Decoding Your Transmission Fluid

Thursday, September 28th, 2017
transmission fluid

If you’re driving a vehicle with an automatic transmission, the topic of transmission fluid is bound to arise. ATF, or Automatic Tranmission Fluid, does a number of things for your transmission. It’s vital that you properly maintain proper ATF levels, as its duties include cooling, clutch application and lubrication. It even serves as the connecting factor between your engine and transmission, per a torque converter. Additionally, ATF offers more friction and holding capacity while driving, acting as a sort of “glue”.

There was once a time where only two types of fluid existed: Type A and Type F. Today, there are four key types of fluid available, with dozens of styles and different brands to select from.

Check your owner’s manual to determine whether you are using the right type of ATF. You might also find the proper recommendation printed on your dipstick.

Follow these Steps to Determine your ATF Levels

Pull out the dipstick

With your gear in park or neutral and the parking brake engaged, pull out your dipstick while the engine is still warm.

Inspect the fluid

Use the tip of your finger to touch the fluid on the dipstick and rub it between your finger and thumb. It should be almost clear, with a pinkish hue. Inspect it for smell and to see if it contains any particles. If it does, it may be time to drain and change the fluid.

Wipe your dipstick, then reinsert and pull out again. If your ATF is clear but the levels aren’t quite up to snuff, use a funnel to top it off, taking care not to overfill.

Need help with your ATF? We’ve got you covered! Stop by one of our Payne used car lots to check out our latest inventory. Or to schedule an appointment with our Service Department, give us a call!

2017 Chevy Silverado Redline Edition

Thursday, September 28th, 2017
2017 Chevy Silverado Redline Edition

If you live in Texas, it’s likely that you take your trucks seriously. And we don’t blame you! A heavy-duty truck is ideal for navigating South Texas terrain. And when you want power plus luxury, the 2017 Chevy Silverado Redline Edition is it.

Named “Redline” for the red lines found throughout, this heavy-duty truck is one that combines performance with sleek, intuitive design. Apart from a wide range of upgraded tech and safety features, this full-size Silverado boasts additional off-road abilities perfect for a wild time. And a striking appearance package to appease the most rugged drivers.

2017 Chevy Silverado Redline Edition Features

The Silverado Redline Edition is Chevrolet’s answer to competitors like the Ford F-150, Ram 1500 and Toyota Tundra. This one packs plenty of power, courtesy of a 6.2-liter V8 primed for adventure. And when it comes to the Redline, you’ve definitely got options. The 6.2-liter V8 Ecotec package contains sport assist steps, a spray-on bedliner, front and rear black Bowties, and 20-inch black aluminum wheels, to name a few. With a power sunroof and driver alert packages to add on at your disposal, there’s no chance the Redline will be everything you’d hoped for in a rough, rugged Texas truck.

Trucks like the Silverado Redline have reaffirmed the position that utility trucks are a thing of the past. These days, truck drivers want style in addition to performance. Chevrolet spared no expense in ensuring the Redline Edition delivers, time and time again.

Stop by your nearby Payne dealership to view our wide selection of new and used cars and trucks. There’s something for every kind of driver in our inventory, including those who want a sleek, smooth ride. You can also schedule an appointment with our Service Department to make sure your 2017 Chevy Silverado Redline Edition is ready to dominate, always.


Power Steering Flush: Do You Need One?

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017
power steering flush

A Power Steering Fluid Flush is an often overlooked part of car maintenance. But if your vehicle utilizes a power steering system, you’ll want to perform one to get it working like new. But what is a power steering fluid flush, anyway?

The good news is that you don’t need a professional to get the job done. All you need is a little bit of time, and a little bit of tools to get your power steering fluid flush done in no time.

How Do I Know?

Evaluating your power steering fluid level is a fairly simple process. You can do it by removing the cap of the reservoir and taking a look inside. The fluid may be visibly dark or obviously contaminated, in which case a flush is in order. If you’re not quite sure just by the look of it, use your dipstick to gather a sample. Place the sample on a white paper towel. Is it dirty? This is a good indicator of whether or not you need a flush.

Performing a power steering flush is a procedure you can do in your garage with a few hours on Saturday morning. And a good set of hand tools.  A power steering flush is something that your car needs if your power steering fluid looks dark.  Power steering fluid is usually a light golden or bright red/pink color.

While you can certainly replace your fluid, a  flushing ensures a fresh new start and uncontaminated power steering fluid. Emptying and filling the reservoir multiple times just to get clean fluid is both wasteful and time consuming. You can perform a simple power steering fluid flush with a few tools and a little patience.

What Do I Do?


Pump the fluid out of the reservoir, then fill it with new power steering fluid. You’ll then want to find the low-pressure line in your system and disconnect it. Allow it to drip into an oil drain pan.

Start your engine and allow your power steering pump to extract the new power steering fluid from the reservoir, and push the oil fluid out. Be sure the reservoir isn’t dry, as you don’t want air in your system. It may be helpful to have someone else start the engine and pay close attention to the drain pan. Meanwhile your task lies in keeping the reservoir full at all times. Once you notice new fluid from the low-pressure line you disconnected, shut off the engine and reconnect your line. Next, “burp” your new system and top off the reservoir with new fluid.

And you’re done!

If you want to leave it to the professionals, not to worry. Contact our Payne Service Department and let us get to work on your vehicle.


Dead Battery? Here’s What to Do!

Tuesday, September 26th, 2017
jump start

Anyone who’s encountered a dead battery knows what a pain they can be. But while they’re definitely an inconvenience for the modern day driver, charging a dead battery isn’t as complicated as one might think. In fact, jump starting your battery is a relatively simple process that need only take a few minutes to get done right. Here’s what to do, step by step, to ensure you’re back on the road and ready to rock in no time.

First, you must know that jumper cables may not solve all of your problems. There are some instances in when jump starts
are ill-advised. If the car you are hooking up to has an electric engine, or is an alternative-fuel vehicle, you could very well caused some damage. Only use vehicles with traditional engines to jump start your vehicle.

You’ll Need:

Jumper cables are an absolute must-have when you need to jump start your battery – go figure! Ranging in length from 10-20 feet, jumper cables will be your saving grace in the midst of a bind. Although longer cables can reach further, they may lose power while the energy makes its way through the extra length. Be sure your cables are in good working condition, free from rust, frays or other damage.

Step 1

Clean off your vehicle’s terminals if they’re dirty, and unplug any devices, such as cell phone chargers, to be safe. Shut off the ignition for both vehicles, and engage both parking brakes.

Step 2

Attach the red cable to the dead battery’s positive terminal, which should read “POS” or “+”. Once you do this, attach the other red cable to the positive terminal of the good battery. Next, attach one of the black cables to this same vehicle’s negative terminal, which should read “NEG” or “-”. To prevent sparking, attach the final black cable to an unpainted metal area under your car’s hood, far from your battery.

Step 3

Start the ignition of the working vehicle, and allow it to run for several minutes. How long you’ll need to do this depends on how dry your battery is. Once your vehicle starts, make sure not to turn it off immediately. Remove the cables in the opposite order that you applied them, and drive around for about 15-30 minutes to ensure your vehicle gets all charged up.


Need service on your vehicle? Payne can help! Contact our Service Department to schedule a maintenance appointment today. 


Auto Finance 101: Do I Need a Co-Signer?

Thursday, September 21st, 2017
auto finance

The process of purchasing a vehicle can be complicated enough. From annual percentage rates, to GAP insurance and extended warranty, it seems the intricacies of auto finance are never-ending. Add terms like “co-signer” into the mix, and you’ve entered a whole other ball game!

If you’ve recently been shopping for cars, you may be wondering what a co-signer is, what it does, and whether or not you’ll need one to purchase the vehicle of your dreams. The answer isn’t black and white.

In fact, several factors can impact whether or not you need a co-signer. Here are a few ways to determine whether or not you’ll need a co-signer to purchase that new vehicle you’ve got your eye on.

Do I need a co-signer?

You might. You might not.

If you are seeking a hefty loan, but don’t have the good credit score to back it up, your lender may request that you acquire a co-signer. This person is usually a family member or friend with good credit, who promises to pay back the loan should you not be able to. It’s not a decision to be taken lightly, but if you have a good history of on-time payments, a co-signer is a great solution to help you get the car you truly want.

Some factors that may determine your need for a co-signer include your credit score and the amount of loan you’re seeking, among other things. If you need a new vehicle, but you’re certain your credit score is not great, you might want to already start considering a co-signer early on. Of course, this will make the process with the finance department run much more smoothly.

A co-signer is a benefit to both you and your lender. Ultimately not only does your lender gain peace of mind from knowing you will repay your loan, but you may also walk away with a better interest rate, given the good credit of your co-signer. Bringing on a co-signer during your car buying journey may be just the ticket to driving away in an awesome vehicle you can feel good about.

Need help with auto finance?

In the market for a new or used vehicle? Our Ed Payne auto finance department can help you quality for your dream ride. Visit us to view our latest in new and used from Ford, GMC, Chevy, Dodge and so much more!

Car Detailing: How to Do It and Why!

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017
car detailing

Cars get dirty. It’s just their very nature. But when it gets to a point beyond return, it’s time for a legitimate car detailing. While you can certainly drive your car through the car wash to get its exterior clean, there’s nothin’ like a good detailing to get it feeling like new. Here are a few tips to ensure your DIY car detailing job is just as good as the pros do it.

DIY Car Detailing

A spotless interior is the first step toward a fully detailed vehicle. You’ll want to make sure to clean up any mess, then carefully vacuum to reduce dirt and grime landing on your soon-to-be stellar exterior. You can also use a vinyl/rubber protectant to shield the interior against wear and tear. If it’s a slew of stains you’re dealing with, it’s time to get to scrubbin’. Spot clean your carpet or upholstery stains with a foam cleanser, then rub it in using a damp sponge or cloth.

A good vacuuming is a great way to get your car all nice and spotless. Take your vehicle to your local DIY car wash, where they have special hoses that can get into those hard-to-reach spots within your car.

Nooks and Crannies
Your car is filled with nooks and crannies beyond your wildest imagination. Even when you think you’re almost through with the cleaning, you’ll find a new crevice to dive into. Use q-tips, tooth brushes and other small tools to reach inside your air vents, and seatbelts. This will ensure you get every tiny bit of dirt that may be hiding.

Your vehicle’s exterior will definitely need to be washed during a detailing, but that’s not all! You’ll need to give your wheels a good, thorough cleaning. You can do this by taking a wheel brush and scrubbing in all of those hard-to-reach places.

Ready to take your ride to the next level? Or looking for another vehicle entirely?

We can help! Visit your local Payne dealership to check out our wide selection of new and used vehicles from all your favorite brands. With us, you’ll find just what you’re looking for.



Organize Your Vehicle with These Handy Items

Tuesday, September 19th, 2017
car organization

A little organization in life is necessary. Especially when it comes to your vehicle! No one likes driving a messy car. But if you’re driving a vehicle that you can’t quite keep clean, you may have a storage issue on your hands. Luckily, there are plenty of items you can stock up on to give you the room you need to get your car – and your life – organized. From CD holders to back seat organizers, here are a few things that can make all the difference in the comfort and clean factor of your car organization.

Tidy Up With These Organizational Tools

Dash Caddy
Round up your front seat junk with a handy dash caddy. From pens, to sunglasses and parking passes, a dash caddy is an awesome option for tying up your loose ends.
Cell Phone Holder
So maybe you have a gold medal in the sport of losing your phone. Avoid fishing around for your phone by purchasing a handy cell phone holder.
CD Holder
Texting and driving is now illegal in the state of Texas. But just because you’re not texting, doesn’t mean you’re not distracted. Keep all of your audio accessories in one place to avoid searching while you’re behind the wheel. From aux cords, to cds, a CD holder can serve as a nifty little way to keep your favorite jams well organized.
Cargo Net
Stuff spilling out of your trunk is annoying. Say goodbye to this little issue when you invest in a cargo net. This will keep all of your trunk’s baggage where it belongs — in the trunk!
Back Seat Organizer
Any parent who’s survived a long road trip with kiddos in tow knows how precious a clean back seat is. A back seat organizer will keep all of those toys (and tantrums!) at bay during your drive.

Looking for a new or used vehicle? Our Ed Payne dealerships have them, plus so much more! Stop by our Rio Grande Valley dealerships to check out our latest inventory. From Ford, to Chevrolet, and Dodge in between, there’s no shortage of stunning vehicles to choose from when you shop Payne.