Posts Tagged ‘RGC’

4 Tips for Improving Gas Mileage

Wednesday, October 10th, 2018

With gas and diesel prices spiking, many people are turning to the Internet to find tips for improving gas mileage. If you don’t drive a fuel-efficient vehicle, your gas mileage might be a constant thought in the back of your mind.

In this article, we will talk about how to improve gas mileage so you can stay away from the pump longer!

Properly Inflate Tires

Did you know that properly inflated tires can reduce fuel consumption by up to 3%? Making sure your tires are properly inflated keeps your gas mileage looking great!

It is recommended to check your tires on a weekly to monthly basis. Not only does keeping your tires properly inflated help with fuel consumption, but it also reduces uneven wear and tread.

Lighten the Load

It seems like simple math when you think of how much effort it takes to pull heavier things. An extra 100 pounds increases fuel consumption by 1–2%. This especially comes into play when you’re in stop-and-go traffic.

Lightening the load in a non-hybrid car can come in various forms. You can go as far as removing seats from the vehicle to just cleaning out the vehicle of useless items.

Don’t Idle

Not only is idling your car bad for the environment, but it’s also bad for your wallet too! Idling your vehicle for two minutes is equivalent of driving a mile. You can waste almost a gallon of gas if you leave your car idling for more than an hour.

Maintain Your Vehicle

This one seems like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised what a simple oil change or spark plug replacement can do for your car! Some of the things you can do for your vehicle to increase gas mileage are:


There are many little things you can do to improve your vehicle’s fuel economy. As gas prices go up, keep in mind some of these tips to help improve your mileage!

If you’re looking to upgrade to a fuel efficient vehicle, check out our inventory and schedule a test drive online!

5 Vehicle Repairs You Should Never Do at Home

Monday, September 17th, 2018

Maintaining your vehicle can be as easy as keeping the interior clean too as difficult as transmission repairs. Though there are some maintenance repairs you can do yourself, like changing the oil, there are some repairs you should never do yourself. In this article, we will outline five vehicle repairs you should never do at home.

Windshield Replacement

Driving with a damaged windshield can pose many problems. Not only is it dangerous to you, but also to your passengers, as the glass is now fragile and more prone to shattering. Replacing your vehicle’s windshield on your own is a bad idea for multiple reasons. You may order the wrong size glass, or be taking a gamble on a windshield that may not be totally safe. It takes professional tools to install a windshield correctly, tools a layperson may not have access to or know how to use. Lastly, the supplies you will need to replace your own windshield can cost the same or more as getting it professionally done.

Fuel Pump

There are several signs you may need to get your fuel pump replaced. Some of these signs consist of your engine sputtering, the temperature of your car rising, or your engine refusing to start. The fuel pump transfers fuel from the tank to the engine. Replacing the fuel pump on your own can be risky if you don’t attach the hoses correctly. Not attaching the hoses correctly can cause catastrophic damage to the engine which can require being outfitted with a new engine altogether.


The transmission is one of the most important functioning parts of your vehicle. The transmission diverts power to the driveshaft and rear wheels. Symptoms your transmission has failed are whining and clunking noises, lack of response, a burning smell, or leaking fluid. The transmission contains many, many complex parts. Without the transmission, your car wouldn’t be able to move forward or reverse. You should never attempt to repair your transmission yourself. This complicated procedure should only be done by professionals, or risk completely ruining your car.

Air Conditioner Repairs

Although some air conditioner repairs are relatively easy to DIY, if you are not car-repair-savvy, you’re better off taking your vehicle to a professional. Refrigerant needed for your AC is toxic when inhaled or ingested, so if you are not familiar with handling this liquid, you should let a professional take over. Adding refrigerant may not be the end-all fix. Your AC may have a more serious problem that requires some time and effort to fix. If you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s best to leave it to a professional.

Drivability Problems and Error Codes

When it comes to drivability problems and error codes, it could be anything from an actual drivability error or an error with the program. Either way, when you have these error codes it’s best to have a mechanic look over your vehicle to diagnose the problems.


Maintaining your vehicle is a daily task. Preventative care will help keep you from having to deal with massive fixes in the future. While there is a lot of car maintenance that doesn’t require a mechanic, major parts of your vehicle, like the transmission, need a professional to look at it.

If your car needs maintenance, Payne Auto Group has service centers across our dealerships. Please visit our website for more info and locations of our service centers!

Auto Finance 101: Which Down Payment is Right for You?

Monday, October 9th, 2017
down payment

You’ve chosen the perfect vehicle, and now all that’s standing in the way is the small matter of payment. If you’re financing a new or used vehicle, the issue of down payments will arise. But just like many aspects of selecting a vehicle, down payments can be complex! Is a down payment necessary? How much will it be? And how is this amount calculated? Here are a few things you should know about down payments before you drive off in your new or used car or truck.

While it was once true that the typical down payment for a new vehicle hovered somewhere around 20%, that is simply not the case now. Many factors will determine which is the right down payment for you and the vehicle you’ve got your eye on. These days, many drivers are putting forth no more than a 10% down payment to purchase their dream car, while others offer a down payment of somewhere in the middle. You’ll need to ask yourself several questions before finding the magic number.

What down payment can you afford?

A down payment of 20% may be impossible with your current income. That’s OK. Dealerships offer a wide range of finance options to make sure you don’t sign up for more than you can handle. Payne is one of them! Contact our finance department for more info.

Will you purchase GAP Insurance?

If you’ll be purchasing GAP insurance for your new vehicle, you can probably get away with a down payment of about 10%. This is because GAP insurance will cover the cost of your vehicle should it be totaled. Car insurance is a whole other ball game, so you’ll want to consult closely with your dealership’s finance department about this issue.

What is Zero Down?

Got good credit? You may be in for a pleasant surprise with zero down. This means that you’re not obligated to give a down payment. A couple of drawbacks to this include higher monthly payments and probably, higher finance charges. You won’t have to save up for months, though, meaning you’ll get your new car sooner than expected. If you do go down the Zero Down route, consider GAP insurance to cover the difference. This is a great option for first time buyers!


Ready to take a new vehicle for a spin? Visit your local Ed Payne auto dealership to view our wide selection of new and used models! Or if you need service on your current vehicle, call us to schedule an appointment!

Car Care 101: Ding and Dent Removal Tips

Saturday, October 7th, 2017
dent removal

When it comes to your car, dents and dings are bound to happen. It’s all part of life, even more so when you’re a frequent driver always on the go! But these dents and dings don’t have to ruin your day, annoying as they may be. There are a few simple, affordable ways to rid your car’s exterior of these tiny little bummers. Follow these steps for a DIY solution to get rid of those imperfections in no time. Learning these handy little tricks will ensure you don’t let a little ding get in the way of smooth ride.

DIY Dent Removal

Step 1: Evaluate the Damage

Most dings and dents can be fixed easy, with little hassle, but there are those that require more extensive intervention. If paint is missing, or the metal happens to be creased or crumpled, you may have to take your vehicle to the dealerships to let the pros handle the rest.

Step 2: Thoroughly Wash and Dry the Area.

This will help clear off any particles before you begin the suction method. You want to make sure you’re working on a clean, clear surface.

Step 3: Use a Suction Cup

This can be highly effective in snapping dents back into place. A dent puller is great for removing shallow dents. Simply push the suction cup into the middle of the dent, taking care to get good suction. Next, push the handles together to lock the dent puller. Then pull the dent out, using a firm and steady pull.

Step 4: Hammer Time

You can also hammer dents out, another common method. A rubber mallet and an old towel are all you need to do this. Wrap the mallet in the towel, then slowly work to tap the ding into place. Hammer the dent from the inside of the metal.

Having some issues with dent removal? No problem. Payne Auto Group can help! Visit our service department for body work. Or browse our selection of new and used inventory from brands like Ford, GMC and Chevy. Here, you’re sure to find just what you’re looking for.

Safe Driving: Say No to Hydroplaning

Sunday, October 1st, 2017

If you’ve ever been caught driving in the middle of a rainstorm, you may know the sudden terror that comes with hydroplaning. With the South Texas weather as unpredictable as it is, you can never be too cautious when it comes to safe driving, especially during heavy rain. And while you may think you’re taking every step possible to drive safely, accidents still happen. You can minimize the chances of hydroplaning, however. Here are a few steps you can take to make sure your car’s tires remain firmly on the ground next time those thunder clouds roll in:

Slow and steady…

Driving too fast can be dangerous – rain or not. You don’t even need to be driving more than 40 miles per hour to put yourself at risk. Anything above 35 miles per hour on a wet road is part of a recipe for disaster. Slow and steady wins the race when it comes to wet or even damp roads. Take your time when it’s driving. Other drivers on the road will thank you, so they can do the same.

Wiggle room

You’ll need to be extra careful when the rain is pouring, meaning that three or four-second gap goes straight out the window. Leave some additional room between you and the car in front of you, allowing more time to stop in case you hit a puddle, or the road gets particularly slippery. You should also try to drive on the tracks set by the car in front of you. This cuts down on some of the slippery sludge found on roadways, making it easier for your tires to remain firmly on the road.

Take care of your tires

Worn tires plus rain can equal a deadly accident! You never want to take a chance when it comes to your tires. Checking your tires more frequently during rainy months will ensure a good line of defense against hydroplaning, especially during that rainy South Texas weather. Make sure they are properly inflated and rotated, and the tread depth is enough to keep you safe. This will all help to curb instances of an accident as the rain pours down, and with fall finally here, it may be a rainy season indeed.
Looking for more car care tips? We’ve got ’em, plus so much more! Visit our website to view our latest inventory, or stop by one of our Valleywide Ed Payne auto dealerships for more information on how to lease or purchase a new or used vehicle. We’ve got a wide selection of stunning models from brands like Ford, GMC, Chevrolet, Fiat and more.

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! 


Defensive Driving 101: Tips for an Ultra Safe Drive

Tuesday, September 12th, 2017
defensive driving

You’ve heard it before: The best offense is a good defense. This applies to driving, too! With so many people on the road at once, you’ve always got to plan for the worst. Luckily, there are a few easy defensive driving tips you can follow to ensure you’re as safe as can be, no matter where you’re going. Keep these in mind the next time you get behind the wheel. Your passengers will thank you!

Get the Big Picture

Many drivers only look out for the car ahead of them. This is helpful, but you should keep your entire surroundings in mind. Doing so ensures you’re always prepared for the unexpected. Trouble can pop up anywhere, and you never want to be caught by surprise, especially when driving. Look far ahead as you can in some instances. Being proactive will give you more chance to prepare if an emergency arises. This makes all the difference between a good driver and a truly great driver.

Maintain a Safe Distance

Keeping a safe distance behind the car in front of you is an easy rule for defensive driving, yet so many people still ignore it. When you’ve got places to go, and people to see, it can be tempting to follow right behind your fellow driver. There are many reasons not to do this. Be sure to allow yourself enough room to brake if need be. Following too closely to the vehicle ahead of you will spell disaster if a car breaks unexpectedly.

Have an Escape

You should always prepare for the worst when driving, and being aware of your surroundings is key. A range of questions should be flowing through your head when you’re on the road. What will you do if the car next to you steers into your lane? What if the driver in front of you decides to suddenly slam on the brakes? Preparing for the worst is always a good idea when you’re behind the wheel. Always keep alternative routes in mind when you hit the road. Doing this will provide an extra sense of security that only comes from experience.

Be safe out there, folks!

For more car safety and maintenance tips, check out our blog. Then stop by our Weslaco car dealership to test drive a new or used vehicle today! We carry a wide selection of models from brands like Chevy, Ford, GMC and more!


Car Care 101: Should I Replace My Cabin Air Filter?

Monday, September 11th, 2017
cabin air filter

You know the importance of routine oil changes for your vehicle, but there are other things you’ll need to replace every so often. One of them is known as the Cabin Air Filter, and it does your vehicle a major solid.

If you ever take your vehicle for an oil change, you may have heard this term before. This type of filter will sometimes pop up on the recommended replacement list, but the majority of us brush it off as a non-priority. Trust us, this is a necessary and helpful replacement that you, and your vehicle will benefit from. There are a few things you should know about cabin air filters before you take the plunge. Read on for more information about what they are, what they do, and whether or not it’s a good idea to get yours replaced.

What is a Cabin Air Filter?

The cabin air filter, which is found in late-model vehicles, cleans the air that is being cycled in the interior. It does this through the heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning system. The job of the filter is to catch any kind pollen, dirt/dust, or material in the air. Without the filter, all types of debris that cycles through your vehicle could do it a great deal of damage. The effect is similar to the way dirt and dust can harm a human’s respiratory system. That’s kind of scary!

You should always consult your owner’s manual for recommendations for your particular vehicle. But maybe you’ve lost it and don’t recall what it said. Lucky for you, we’ve got a few tips and tricks to help you determine whether a replacement is necessary.

What are some warning signs?

If your cabin air filter needs replacing, you may be currently experiencing reduced air flow through your climate control system. If you crank the fan up high and hear a whole bunch of noise but get little-to-no results, then it’s best to get your car checked out.

Another thing to look out for is an insistent smell that stinks up your car. This can definitely be a sign of a weakened or broken cabin air filter, and it’s one that should motivate you to get to the mechanics quickly!

In any case, you should have your car checked out at least once a year to determine if a replacement is necessary. Our awesome service department gives your vehicle a thorough inspection! We want to make sure you are out on the road without a worry. Feel free to contact us or set up an appointment online at your nearby Payne Auto dealership. Our skilled mechanics will get your car ready to go in no time. Or if you’re looking for a new or used car, you can also browse our wide selection of inventory!

Improve Your Tire Wear with These Easy Steps

Sunday, September 10th, 2017
tire wear

Replacing your tires is necessary evil. You just can’t escape the fact that your tires will need replacing time to time, and if you’re constantly on the go, you may notice you’re in need of tire replacement more often than normal. Quite simply, the more you drive, the more your tires will experience wear. But just because you’ve got a busy lifestyle doesn’t mean you have to have to accept a life full of tire replacements. There are things you can do to reduce the amount of wear on your tires, regardless of your driving habits. Follow these easy tips to get more bang for your buck in regard to your vehicle’s wheels.

Rotate Tires

You may have underestimated the importance of rotating your tires. This is another one of those things we know we should be doing, but don’t always take the time to follow through with. Consider this a fair warning. If you want to reduce wear and tear, you’ll want to keep things like tire rotation high on your vehicle’s priorities list. Tire rotations help keep the wear on your wheels consistent.

Regular Tire Alignment

Tire alignments keep your tires in good, working order. Your vehicle’s tires require a fine balance for optimal performance. Regular alignments will go a long way in reducing tire wear. What’s more, skipping on alignments can lead to costly repairs in the long run. It simply isn’t worth it! Make regular tire alignments part of your routine car maintenance.

Maintain Tire Pressure

Monitoring your tire pressure regularly is another good way to reduce wear. Keeping tire pressure uniform across the board will help your tires drive smoothly. If you find that one of your tires is loosing pressure, head to your nearest auto shop, or your nearby Payne Auto dealership, to get it looked at ASAP.

Monitor Your Driving

While there may not be much you can do to limit your time on the road, you can certainly monitor the way you drive. Slowing down speed as you take turns, and taking care not to recklessly speed, are just two adjustments you can make to improve tire wear.


Are you in the market for a new or used vehicle? Our Ed Payne dealerships have them! Stop by and visit us to check out our wide selection of high-quality vehicles. We carry brands like Ford, GMC, Chevrolet, Dodge and so much more! Speak to one of our skilled salespeople to find out about financing and leasing options, or contact us to schedule service! 

5 Awesome Car Care Tips

Tuesday, September 5th, 2017
car care

Cars are complex. Anyone who’s ever heard a funny noise or felt a sudden jerk can attest to this. And even if you’ve been driving for decades, you still may not know all there is to know about car care. And that’s OK! We’re all in this together. While we’ve certainly covered plenty thus far, there are a few basic car care tips that simply must be followed. Keep these handy tips in mind the next time you hit the road. Whether it’s for a long, road trip, or a short trip to the grocery store, these will help you on your way toward a smooth ride.

Car Care Tips


Always check and change your oil. If you don’t, then expect your engine to easily fall apart. Consult your car’s owner’s manual for recommendations. Times are changin’, and the old 3,000 mile rule doesn’t always apply!

TIP 2 

Flush your cooling system, and change your coolant ONCE per YEAR! Doing this will keep your coolant system in good shape, and will ensure the prevention of corrosion and deposits from building up inside your cooling system.


Change out any other kind of oils that are in your car. Here, you’re basically looking at oils such as transmission and others of the like. These do need to be changed out according to service spans.


Keep your car clean! Like the saying goes, “You better baby your baby.” It can be tempting sometimes to treat your car like an on-the-go trash can. But in keeping your vehicle clean, you ensure that your car looks brand-spanking good but that you also rid your vehicle of any kind of harmful dirt, or grime that can seep into the parts that are inside.

TIP 5 

Everything that moves in your vehicle needs to be greased. If not, then how do you expect your vehicle to survive for the next 3-4 years? Schedule regular maintenance appointments to ensure your car is in tip top shape for years to come.


Stay tuned for more tips, or if you’re in need of maintenance, give us a call! If you’re looking into purchasing a new or used vehicle, stop by your local Ed Payne Rio Grande Valley car dealership and speak to a trained sales representative who can help you find exactly what you’re looking for.