Tischer Acura Nissan Partners with Honda USA and Dwight D. Eisenhower Middle School to Encourage Perfect Attendance Among Seventh Graders

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On Thursday June 8th, several of our staff members made their way over to Dwight D. Eisenhower Middle school (DDEMS) in Laurel, MD to speak to the entire sixth grade class. During a special assembly, the Tischer team, along with Councilwomen Mary Lehman representative Dora Myles-Moore, Honda USA representative Joe Lopez, PTSA president Ron Dortch and many others, presented the details of an exciting new program they are sponsoring: Continue reading

How to Use No Rinse Car Wash Products

norinsecarwashSometimes we don’t have access to outdoor running water. It may be because water is shut off to prevent pipes from bursting in the colder months or there are water restrictions in your area due to droughts. Whatever the reason, it doesn’t mean you have to suffer through with a dirty car. Did you know there are no rinse car wash products on the market? Follow these easy steps to a clean car with a rinseless wash. Continue reading

Advantages of Servicing Your Vehicle with a Dealership Service Center

Dealership Service Center

Inevitably, car owners are going to need to have their vehicle serviced sooner or later. When that time comes, they are faced with the decision of where to have the necessary service done – at the dealership service center where the vehicle was purchased or at a local repair shop. There are several pros and cons to both, but for the purposes of this blog post, we’re going to focus on the work performed by the dealership.

One of the biggest advantages of servicing a vehicle at the dealership begins right in the service bays. Dealerships employ technicians that are considered specialists in working on a particular line of vehicles. They are manufacturer-trained and, in most cases, only work on the make of vehicles that are sold through that particular dealership.

The specialist training is often only offered to a manufacturer’s network of dealerships, and encompasses not only the service technicians, but service managers, advisors and support staff as well. This means that the men and women working on the vehicles have intimate knowledge of how these vehicles are supposed to perform and how/when to make necessary repairs.

That knowledge is extremely valuable to dealerships, and it does not come cheap. Dealers typically offer higher salaries or other incentives in order to recruit and retain these specialized personnel, which in turn can increase labor rates. Despite the higher labor cost, drivers really do get what they pay for in terms of know-how, accuracy, and service.

Another advantage is the relationship that is built with the dealership. By having a vehicle serviced regularly at the dealership, they have an accurate and up-to-date picture of the road and service history of that vehicle. They are better equipped to understand what is going on with each individual vehicle because they have all prior service records right at their fingertips.

While shopping around for the best deal at local repair shops might save time and money in the short-term, drivers may run into issues such as being presented with conflicting recommendations, inaccurate diagnostic information, and inexact service timeframes in the long run due to a lack of consistent recordkeeping.

While having work done at a local repair shop may be more convenient, the fact is that  dealership service departments honor manufacturer and extended warranty coverage free of charge to their customers. This is a major plus to the customer in many ways, the least of which is to the wallet! Repair shops usually charge a deductible and/or for labor for warranty repairs and often have to order parts which are not usually kept on-hand – which could also lead to additional shipping charges passed on to the consumer by the repair shop. At a dealership, most parts needed to make repairs to the line of vehicles they sell are readily available, thus requiring less time for repairs to be made.

Many of the warranty advantages are contingent on the vehicle breaking down within easy access to the dealerships, so if a problem were to occur further away from home, drivers may be in the situation where they have no choice but to use a local repair shop regardless of warranty coverage.

Finally, dealerships also offer their customers OE (original equipment) parts for repairs to their vehicles. This is advantageous for those repairs that fall under warranty, but can cost customers more if they are not covered. Also, many dealership service centers will not install or service after-market products that are outside of the factory standard for that particular vehicle, leaving a local or specialty repair shop the only option for those owners.

These advantages highlight some of the areas where using a dealership service center benefits car owners. Have you always used the service center at the dealership where you purchased your vehicle? Have some past experience, positive or negative, about dealing with a dealership service center? Let us know in the comments section below. We value your input!

10 Things You Need to Know Before Buying a Used Car

Buying a Used Car

Sooner or later, everyone comes to the point where they need to purchase a new car. Buyers find themselves with a lot of options and decisions:

  • What type of car to go with?
  • What features are essential?
  • Do I buy new or used?

Used cars can be a more economical way to replace a vehicle – buyers can get a vehicle that’s almost as good as new, without having to deal with the depreciation that’s associated with buying new. For those who decide to go with purchasing a used car, there are many more things to consider.

Here are the 10 things you need to know before buying that used car:

  1. Research vehicles with a good resale value. Vehicles that have a good resale value tend to make good used cars. Cars like the Nissan Altima, the Toyota Camry and the Honda Accord tend to hold their value and remain on the road longer. In addition, used vehicles from second-tier auto manufacturers like Mitsubishi and Mazda are comparable, and on average, $3,000 cheaper (source: edmunds.com).
  1. Shop for newer used cars that still have some of their original manufacturer’s warranty. Most late-model vehicles have at least 3-year/36,000 mile warranties, while newer used vehicles may have 10-year/100,000 mile warranties. Take advantage of the maintenance included with these vehicles. Also, be sure to verify that the warranty is fully transferable.
  1. Research the vehicle’s history. Details concerning past owners, use and maintenance should be important in influencing your decision to buy a used vehicle. Companies like Carfax and AutoCheck provide buyers with vehicle history reports that cover title information, flood damage history, total loss accident history, odometer reading, and more.
  2. Be sure that the vehicle you’re interested in will pass both state safety and emissions tests. In most states this is a legal requirement, but not in all. Be sure to check with your state vehicle administration office to verify if these tests are required before the sale of used vehicles. Repairs to make a used car roadworthy could cost hundreds of dollars (if not more) and in most states, you can’t register your vehicle if it does not pass these tests.
  3. Consider Certified, Pre-Owned (CPO) Vehicles. These vehicles are typically late models with more than 50,000 miles, but have been through multipoint inspections, with any needed service or upkeep taken care of before they are put on a lot. CPO vehicles are also backed by the manufacturer and often come with extended warranties at no additional cost.
  4. Examine the vehicle services record and mileage disclosure documents carefully. Verify that the vehicle has been well-maintained and regularly serviced. Things like oil changes and radiator flushes help to preserve the integrity of the vehicle’s engine and keep it on the road.
  5. Test drive the vehicle before you purchase it. During the test drive, be sure and check for things such as: acceleration from a stop, visibility, engine noise, passing acceleration, hill-climbing power, braking, cornering and turn radius, suspension, and rattles & squeaks. All of these things must be considered before the purchase.
  6. Compare the value of the vehicle with the sale price using the NADA Official Used Car Guide published by the National Automobile Dealer Association or the Kelley Blue Book. Also compare prices of similar models and years to verify that you are not paying too much.
  7. Ask about the dealer’s return policy and get it in writing. Be sure to read through it carefully – many times there are mileage and time restrictions involved in returning a vehicle. Carmax, for example, offers a 5-day money-back guarantee if the vehicle is returned in the condition it was purchased.
  8. Check for any manufacturer recalls for the make, model and year of the vehicle you are interested in purchasing and ensure that all recalled items have been addressed on the vehicle. The manufacturer recalls involve both the safety of the vehicle and the passengers within and should not be overlooked.

These are just a few of the considerations buyers might want to think about before buying a used vehicle and some more great information can be found online. As always, we welcome your feedback! If you have any additional tips to buying used vehicles, please leave us your comments below!

Five Automotive Magazines You Must Check Out!

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Looking for a good automotive magazine subscription? Check out these five automotive magazines. Whether you are into fast cars, hot rods, vintage collectables, or just looking to buy a new car, there’s something for everyone!

  1. Car and Driver
    Calling all automotive enthusiasts–Car and Driver is the magazine for you! It is one of the top automotive publications and has been covering the auto industry for over 60 years. Car and Driver covers both foreign and domestic vehicles including cars, pickup trucks, vans and SUVs. Car and Driver staff does extensive testing to provide the reader with ‘tell it like it is’ reviews where writers are not afraid to point out the underachievers. In addition, Car and Driver has the latest in automotive news, motor sports, the newest technology developments and cutting edge reviews. Car and Driver is a monthly publication with 12 issues/year. To subscribe to Car and Driver, click here: https://subscribe.hearstmags.com/subscribe/splits/caranddriver/cdb_top_nav_subscribe
  1. Motor Trend
    A trusted resource of the automotive industry for over 50 years, Motor Trend is for the car fanatic. The magazine covers both foreign and domestic automobiles and performs thorough road testing to provide its readers with reviews of featured vehicles and multi-car comparisons in every issue. Motor Trend has a monthly feature called ‘Trend’ which provides the reader with all the newest happenings in the car industry, as well as information on future and upcoming models. From auto shows and motor sports to interviews and automotive products, Motor Trend gives the subscriber all of this, plus one special monthly feature in each issue. It is a monthly publication with 12 issues/year. To subscribe to Motor Trend, simply click here: https://www.circsource.com/store/Subscribe.html?magazineId=109&sourceCode=I9AB6J
  1. Hot Rod
    Hot Rod magazine has been in circulation for over 60 years and is the oldest publication dedicated to hot rodding. The magazine centers on high performance and personalized hot rods, street rods, and muscle cars. Hot Rod provides technical how-to tips on restoration, engine build-ups, maintenance, paint, graphics and performance. Readers are also treated to industry commentary. If you like big engines and big tires, you’ll love Hot Rod! It is a monthly publication with 12 issues/year. To subscribe to Hot Rod: https://www.circsource.com/store/Subscribe.html?magazineId=104&sourceCode=I8ABNN
  1. Road & Track
    One of the oldest automotive publications still in circulation is Road & Track; its first issue debuted in 1947. The magazine covers both foreign and domestic production automobiles and also includes race cars and race coverage, with race car drivers often contributing to the magazine. Road & Track focuses on high performance and reports on aerodynamics, suspension, and powerful engines. You will find road test reviews on a wide array of cars from new and eccentric to vintage. Road & Track also provides equipment reviews and maintenance tips. If you like powerful cars, this is the magazine for you! R&T publishes 10 issues/year. To subscribe to R&T, get started by clicking here: https://subscribe.hearstmags.com/subscribe/splits/roadandtrack/roa_sub_nav_link
  1. Automobile
    Automobile’s ‘No Boring Cars’ motto makes this the magazine for people who have a passion for cars. Automobile considers itself more of a lifestyle magazine than an auto publication. This magazine’s reports, which include road tests and reviews, are more subjective rather than based on technical data. Turn the pages and you will find new, old, and even vintage cars with a comprehensive buyer’s guide in each issue. Automobile provides a broad range of information including car collector tips, history of the car business and industry news. Automobile is a monthly publication with 12 issues/year. To subscribe to Automobile: https://www.circsource.com/store/Subscribe.html?magazineId=3&sourceCode=I8ABNN

Do you have any go-to magazines for vehicles that we haven’t listed here? Please let us know in the comments below or send us a post on our Facebook page.

Six Tips for Traveling with Pets

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Summer is here and for many of us, it’s vacation time! More and more pet owners are choosing to include their pets on their family vacation. As we all know, family vacations can be stressful undertakings, but adding your fur-babies to the mix has the potential to create complete chaos. So, if you’re planning on hitting the road with your pet, here are a few tips to help you to keep your pet safe and your vacation as stress free as possible:

  1. Keep your pet secured
    Keep everyone safe by using some type of restraining system for your pet. This may involve a pet carrier/crate, a pet seatbelt restraining system or bedding restraint. According to AAA, 30,000 accidents a year are caused by unrestrained pets wandering in the vehicle. Securing your pet creates less distraction for the driver. For their safety and because it is the law in many states, it is also best to keep your pet secured somewhere other than the front seat as this will keep them safe from air bag harm in the event of an accident.
  1. Don’t leave your pet in the car
    Your pet should never be left in a car, especially in the warm summer months, when it can be life-threatening. For example, an 85 degree outside temperature can climb to 110 degrees inside a car within 10 minutes, causing organ damage and/or death to any pets trapped inside. It is now illegal in many states to leave a pet unattended in a car, and it is now legal in many states for bystanders to break windows/doors in an attempt to release animals trapped in a hot car.
  1. Make frequent stops
    Allow for frequent stops when traveling with your pet. Plan to stop every two to three hours for a bathroom break, meal time, and to get some exercise. Always have your pet’s collar, tags and leash so that he/she can’t wander off, and remember that your pet is not familiar with the area and shouldn’t be left unattended.
  1. Don’t allow your pet to hang out the window
    If you choose to travel without securing your pet (a practice we highly discourage), don’t let he/she hang out the window. As much as dogs love the cool breeze blowing on their face, it is not a safe way to travel because it puts them at risk for injury from debris, ear damage, and/or lung infection.  In addition to the risks that come from hanging out the window, pets should never travel in the back of a pickup truck because this practice could lead to overheating or ejection from the truck. All of #4 can be avoided by following Tip #1 above and securing your pet for everyone’s safety!
  1. Hydrate
    Be sure to bring plenty of cold water with you to keep your pet hydrated. Don’t count on using tap water from places you stop, because your pet could end up with a bacterial infection. The ASCPA recommends bringing a gallon of water with you, and depending on the length of your trip, you may need to adjust that amount accordingly.
  1. Test run
    If your pet is not used to being in the car, take short rides with he/she regularly before your trip. This will allow he/she to become familiar with the motion and hopefully lessen the chance of nausea.

Traveling with your pet doesn’t have to be stressful. If you plan ahead and follow the tips above, car travel can be a breeze. Once you arrive at your destination, take your pet on a long, well-deserved walk and enjoy your vacation. And last but not least…always remember to have your car serviced/checked before embarking on a long road trip. Click here to schedule any needed service at Ticher.

Creating a Memorable Car-Purchase Experience – It All Begins with the Salesperson

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Whether you’re in the market for a new or pre-owned vehicle, you are spending your hard-earned money and you will want to have a good experience doing so.   We at Tischer Auto take pride in providing the ultimate sales/buying experience. Our knowledgeable sales professionals are charged with ensuring a memorable experience that builds a lasting relationship with our customers. How do we do it? By guaranteeing that certain tenets of business and sales methods are followed:

  • Attitude – this, folks, is everything! From the minute you enter the dealership to the moment you drive off the lot in your car – the attitude of those with whom you deal will make or break your car-purchase experience. Car Sales Professional says that the best salespeople have, “…a positive attitude regarding the car business, the dealership where they work and the product that they sell… Face it; how good can you be if you don’t believe in your product, your dealership and your profession?” They go on to state that, “…most customers have a sixth sense and they can sense things that you can’t hide. A poor attitude comes out in variety of different ways regardless of your words.” Car buyers should expect to deal with a professional wishing to create a lasting business relationship, instead of a person just wanting to close a sale.
  • Knowledgethis is one of those things that can’t be faked. A salesperson’s knowledge of his/her product(s) comes through as soon as a conversation is started or questions are asked. Your salesperson should know at least the basics about the vehicle in which you are interested. For example, he/she should know the answers to questions such as, “what size is the engine?” And “how does this car stack up against its peers?” without having to say, “I’ll have to get back to you on that” or checking out an info sheet, a card, or a script.
  • Listening skills – your salesperson should ask you probing questions in order to glean information on exactly what you’re looking for in a vehicle. Then, he/she MUST listen carefully to your responses, even taking notes, so that he/she can zero in on the right car for you. And, no, this does not include the question, “How much do you want your loan payment to be per month?” Your answer to that question should always be something like, “You let me worry about that, I need you to find me the right car and the right deal.” A sales professional should ask you questions like, “How will you be using this car?” so that he/she can determine if an SUV, a crossover, a sedan or coupe will be appropriate for you; “Are you more interested in saving on gas or in comfort for long trips?” so that he/she can determine what options/upgrades you may be interested in; and finally, “What is your price range?” so that he/she can keep the sales experience within your budget and not reach for vehicles above (or below) your price limits. Listening is KEY to the overall sales relationship – and you should expect your sales professional to listen to your requirements/constraints and respond to them accordingly. Business Insider says that your salesperson should listen more than he/she speaks. So if you find that your salesperson is talking, talking, talking, understand that this person is not listening to you.
  • Customer Care – this includes a focus on building a long-lasting relationship, not being pushy to get a sale. A minimum expectation of your sales professional is that he/she not push you into something that isn’t right for you either budget-wise or vehicle-wise. This person should take everything you’ve discussed and put it all together to create a tailored sales experience. After all, you’re spending your hard-earned money and your valuable time with him/her in order to purchase a vehicle that will more than meet your needs.
  • Negotiation Skills – this includes the ability to know when to back off. For example, a good negotiator is not going to keep pitching to you when he/she senses that you are done for the day. It’s possible, in fact it happens all the time, for your salesperson to know that you’ve got to take a break, go home and discuss the options of your purchase with your family/significant other and come back another day. Back in the day, salespeople were told not to let any “fish on the hook” to leave or they would lose the deal. That is simply not the case today. Today, with so much information at our fingertips, it’s more than possible for a customer to leave, sleep on it, and come back with a decent counteroffer that they and the salesperson can live with. So if your salesperson seems desperate not to let you leave without closing the deal, leave and consider another dealership. This is better than caving to someone against your intuitions and having buyer’s remorse.

At Tischer, we have built our reputation on the life-long relationships we have with our customers. We also hire salespeople with the above tenets in mind. Because at the end of the day, it’s not the sale that makes our dealership one of the top in the area, it’s our quality family of employees who make Tischer a successful dealership that our customers are loyal to and recommend to their friends.

Are you in the market for a new or pre-owned car? Come on down to Tischer Auto and we will show you how a tailored sales experience is done! We look forward to seeing you soon. In the meantime, if you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.

6 Dangerous Driving Habits to Break

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Did you know that automobile accidents are consistently one of the top ten causes of death year after year? In fact, approximately 35,000 people die each year from automotive accidents where the driver is at fault. But what if we could change this?

This week we are going to talk about some dangerous driving habits that, if eliminated, could drastically reduce your chance of being involved in a preventable automobile accident. Take a look below and keep an inventory of how many of these bad habit you, or your loved ones, needs to break.

1. Alcohol
Driving under the influence accounts for approximately one third of all automotive accident deaths in the U.S. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says this represents an average of one alcohol impaired driving fatality every 51 minutes. Yikes! Use common sense and if you or the driver you are with has been drinking, call a taxi or friend to come get you. Even better, plan ahead and have a designated driver.

2. Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is increasingly getting worse, we see it everyday on our roads. Eating, applying makeup and/or shaving used to be the most common concerns, but with the progression in technology we now face other challenges. Texting, talking on the phone and listen to music are all major distraction that take our eyes off the road and our minds off driving. State legislators and large corporations have tried to lessen this problem by putting laws into effect and running marketing campaigns, but the problem still exists. We are making progress; fourteen states have banned handheld cell phone use and an astonishing 46 states have banned text messaging while driving, but we still need more drivers to make the commitment to not do these things when driving. It may sound cliche, but it can wait!

3. Speeding
According to the NHTSA, speeding is the second major contributing factor in traffic fatalities. The greater the speed, the longer it takes to stop the car and potentially avoid an accident. Speed limit signs are posted for a reason and represent the safe speed for that road. Just as speeding is dangerous so can be driving too slow. To be safe, take note of the posted speed limit and adjust your speed accordingly.

4. Drowsy Driving
Driving while tired can be as dangerous as drunk driving. The NHTSA estimates that drowsy driving causes 100,000 accidents a year. Being tired can cause poor judgment and slower reaction time and if you fall asleep at the wheel there is no reaction at all. If you notice your eyelids getting heavy, your head nodding or you’re doing things like rolling down the window or turning up the radio to stay awake, pull over and take a rest, it could save your life and the lives of others!

5. Weather Conditions
You’re best bet for avoiding an accident in bad weather is to stay off the roads. However, if that is not an option, make adjustments according to the conditions. The NHTSA estimates that 24% of vehicle crashes are weather related. When roads are slippery and wet, drive slower and leave a greater distance between you and the car in front of you. Again, these are common sense recommendations, but it never hurts to cover them again.

6. Not Wearing a Seat Belt
Wearing a seat belt saves lives, period. According to the NHTSA, seat belts saved the lives of over 12,000 people in 2012 alone. All states have laws requiring minors to wear seat belts and all states except New Hampshire require adults to wear them as well. This is a simple way to avoid injury or death, click it and make sure your occupants do too.

Doing your part as a safe and attentive driver can help you avoid an accident. Unfortunately car accidents will never be eliminated 100% but you can reduce your chances by being responsible and focusing solely on driving while you are behind the wheel. Don’t leave your safety and the safety of others to chance, break these dangerous driving habits while you can.

Get Your Vehicle Ready for the Summer Heat – 7 Major Causes of Vehicle Breakdowns

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It’s almost that time of year again; you know the one–the one where it’s so hot outside that you literally melt just walking to your car! Although we really do love the summer, the heat can be grueling and can cause your vehicle to be susceptible to a breakdown.

So, while some folks can take or leave the heat, one thing that is often overlooked is the affect heat (and drastic temperature in general) can have on a vehicle. As temperatures rise, so does the risk of a costly breakdown of your vehicle. Since we all want to avoid this scenario, we want to share with you the major causes of vehicle breakdowns related to summer’s heat. Take a look:

Cause # 1: Insufficient Coolant

When the temperature warning light goes on, you may be low on coolant. After the car cools, check the coolant and fill to the proper level with a 50/50 mixture.

Cause #2: Dirty or Rusty Coolant

It’s time to flush the cooling system. You can either do this yourself of bring your vehicle in to our service department and have one of our experts take care of it for you. Your AC will run better and your gas mileage will even improve slightly.

Cause #3: Hose Deterioration

If your hoses are spongy, hard, or start to swell around the hose clamps, it’s time to replace them.

Cause #4: Sticky Thermostat

If the engine takes too long to heat, it means your thermostat is stuck in the open position and needs to be replaced. This is a repair that we would recommend coming into the shop to have done.

Cause #5: Worn Fan Belt

If your fan belt is cracked, fraying, or starts to squeal, it’s probably slipping. Check for proper belt tension and replace worn belts.

Case #6: Radiator Slug or Rust

When your engine overheats and there is goo visible in the radiator neck, it’s time to clean or replace the radiator.

Cause #7: Coolant Overflow

Loss of coolant through the overflow pipe usually means a leaky radiator cap. It’s a cool idea to keep your car’s radiator in good condition, especially in hot weather.

There you have it: The 7 major, but often overlooked, conditions that could land your car in the shop this summer! Take some time to check out your vehicle’s health, or stop in to Tischer and we will take care of you!

College Graduates Save with the Acura College Grad Program

Acura College Grad Program

Congratulations on your college graduation! Now’s the time to reap the benefits of all your hard work. If you’re thinking about buying a new car as you enter the work force, consider taking advantage of the Acura College Grad Program.

The Acura College Grad Program offers a $500 bonus toward any 2014 or newer Acura vehicle when you finance or lease with Acura Financial Services.

Here are the criteria you will need to meet in order to take advantage of this offer:

  • 5% down payment
  • Proof of employment (or firm commitment from employer)
  • Graduated from college within the past two years or will graduate in the next six months
  • Provide Acura dealer with credit and document requirements
  • No adverse credit history

With a new Acura at your disposal, not only will you look the part of a professional, you’ll also reap the significant benefits of being an Acura owner: you’ll have the option to defer your first payment for 90 days, build good credit, and have the choice of competitive finance and lease options. After all, we want you to enter the work force in a new car, and we want it to be manageable for your new lifestyle as well.

For more information on the Acura College Grad Program, see details on the Acura website. And if you’d like to speak with one of our sales associates about this opportunity, please don’t hesitate to contact us: 866-906-1974