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Archive for May, 2011

chevy trucks 

Buying a new or used car from a dealership can sometimes feel like going into battle. At Chapman Chevrolet in Tempe, it’s our goal to make this exciting purchase as smooth and hassle-free as possible. Below are several tips that will ensure that your car buying experience will be an enjoyable one.    

Research Online First

The Internet has a wealth of information about the various cars and trucks that are available to you. Be sure to visit manufacturer sites , dealer websites,  and review sites. It is important to compare information from multiple sources. And, be sure to print out what you find and bring it to the dealership.

Pick a type of vehicle and a budget

Think about what you want and need from your new vehicle and, most importantly, what you can afford to spend. Review the available options and consider what is most important to you. To make sure that your vehicle of choice is in your price range, plug in your preferences into a Payment Estimator Calculator.  This will help to determine the monthly cost to finance your new vehicle. When you visit the showroom, explain to your Chapman Chevy salesperson the options you prefer and what you can afford. Then they can show you vehicles that fit all of your criteria.

Get a vehicle history report

If you’re buying a used car, be sure to get a vehicle history report from CarFax and/or AutoCheck before purchasing the car.   The report will tell you who owned the car, if it’s been in any accidents, if it’s been reported stolen and more. Our used car sales team at Chapman Chevy will be able to help you access these reports.

If you’re not happy, speak up

Most dealerships don’t want to make you uncomfortable. But they all want to sell you a car. At Chapman Chevrolet, you will never feel pressured to buy and you are guaranteed a fair deal for your vehicle. If, however, you don’t like how you’re being treated or if you think you’re being pressured to buy, then tell your salesperson or ask to speak to a manager. Remember that it’s your choice when and where you buy your next vehicle.

Have fun!

If you prepare ahead of time, the car buying process can be fun. Our goal at Chapman Chevy is to get you the right new or used vehicle and to make sure that you enjoy the entire process. We are very proud of the people that work here and we know that you will have a great experience with us.

Whether you are a novice teen driver or an experienced motorist, basic vehicle maintenance is an important part of being a car owner. Many of our suggested tips for maintaining your vehicle can add to your car’s fuel economy, prolong the lifespan of your vehicle, and save you hundreds of dollars in repair costs. Most of these tasks can be completed in a few minutes without the use of any tools or special equipment.

Check the oil in your car regularly

Checking the oil level is a quick, easy job that we recommend you do at every other gas fill-up. All you’ll need is a rag or paper towel, and your car’s owner’s manual if you have questions.  With the engine off, open the car’s hood and find the dipstick. Pull the dipstick out from the engine and wipe any oil off from its end. Then insert the dipstick back into its tube and push it all the way back in. Pull it back out, and this time look at both sides of the dipstick to see where the oil is on the end. If the top of the oil “streak” is between the two marks or within the crosshatched area, the level is fine. But if the oil is below the minimum mark, you need to add oil.

Also, you’ll want to verify that the engine oil is brown or black. A light, milky appearance or metal particles could indicate coolant leaking into the engine or internal engine damage. If you see either of these conditions, call our Chevy service department to arrange for one of our service professionals to further diagnosis.

Tire Pressure

You should check your tire pressure and tread wear at least once a month. This will help improve your car’s fuel economy, the longevity of your tires and how your car handles. It is important that your tires are inflated to the correct pressure. The correct tire pressure for your car is usually written down in the glove box, the door jamb, the fuel filler door, or in the owner’s manual. As for tread wear, poor tread reduces your traction in the same way that a slippery road would. It’s best to have at least 1/8″ of tread remaining.

Headlights (and turn signals)

A quick check of your lights can save you a few bucks in ticket costs as well as provide confidence in nighttime visibility. An easy way to check headlight brightness is to park facing a wall, about five feet away. Are your headlights bright or soft white, or are they yellow and dim? Are the circles aligned evenly on the wall? If your headlights look yellow, it’s time to replace the headlight bulb, and it’s best to replace both at the same time. If your lights aren’t aligned correctly, visit our Chevy service department to have them properly aligned.

While you’re checking the vehicle’s outside lights, do a quick inspection of the lights on your dash and interior lights that come on when you open the door. Replace any that are out or that have become dim.

Windshield Wipers

Wiper blades are often neglected, but one of the more important items on your car. Inspect them for debris and damage. You should change your wiper blades at least every six months, as the dry heat can cause cracking and breakage.  

These basic car maintenance tips can help to prevent or limit costly repairs for your beloved Chevy. If you have further questions regarding vehicle upkeep, call or stop by Chapman Chevrolet Service Center.

It’s every driver’s worst nightmare to be involved in an accident or a crisis situation. Questions abound—am I safe? How do I get help? What happens next? In the event that an automobile accident does happen, Chapman Chevrolet in Tempe and OnStar, the leading provider of connected safety and security solutions, have you covered.

Chapman Chevrolet inventories several of the 2011 GM models that are equipped with OnStar. This means that when you purchase a new or used GM product equipped with OnStar from Chapman Chevrolet, you are able to access several of the safety and security features that have helped millions of drivers in the US and Canada. 

Check out some of the key features that OnStar offers below. Many of them can save drivers time and money— and it’s only a button-press away:

1. Automatic Crash Response and Emergency Services: Using a priority connection, an Onstar advisor can provide your critical crash details such as the type and severity of the crash, along with your exact location, to emergency responders so they are better prepared to help you when they arrive at the scene.

2. Unlock Service: Ooops! The keys are accidentally locked in your vehicle. Since the OnStar system can unlock a vehicle door remotely, drivers are back in action within minutes or even seconds.

3. Stolen Vehicle Location Assistance and Stolen Vehicle Slowdown: You return to your parking space, but your car’s not there. Now what? A quick call to 1.888.4.ONSTAR and an advisor can help connect you to law enforcement to file a police report. Then the advisor uses GPS technology to immediately try to locate your vehicle. Once a stolen vehicle has been located by an advisor and law enforcement at the scene confirms that conditions are safe, OnStar can send a remote signal that gradually slows the vehicle. Also, on select models, Remote Ignition Block can prevent the stolen vehicle from being restarted once the engine has been turned off.  

4. Vehicle Diagnostics: With OnStar vehicle diagnostics, about every 30 days, each vehicle’s key systems, such as the engine, airbags, and anti-lock brakes, are checked while the vehicle is in use. You’ll keep on top of vehicle maintenance with email alerts that tell you precisely when to change your oil and put air in your tires. By simply following the tire pressure alerts and keeping your tires properly inflated, you could save more than $70 on fuel per year.

5. Hands-Free Calling: The OnStar system features a built-in, voice-activated calling feature. Drivers just press the OnStar button and speak a telephone number into the system. This helps limit distracted driving by allowing the driver to keep eyes on the road and hands on the wheel.

6. Turn-by-Turn Navigation: It’s simple – all you have to do is push the OnStar button and ask the advisor to download directions to your car. An automated voice calls out every turn as you need it.

More than 13 years ago, GM had the foresight and fortitude to create an industry-defining company, OnStar, focused on developing powerfully simple technology to make a real difference in peoples’ lives. Chapman Chevrolet in Tempe is proud to offer OnStar services in many of the vehicles that we inventory. Should you have questions regarding OnStar safety features and setup, please do not hesitate to contact the service team at Chapman Chevrolet in Tempe.


What do I do if my check engine light comes on?

This simply means that your vehicle’s computer system has detected a problem. Although your car may seem to run fine, it is important to have the issue addressed to prevent long-term problems.

A glowing CHECK ENGINE or SERVICE ENGINE SOON light alerts you to problems in your car’s onboard diagnostic system (OBD) that should be checked out as soon as possible. There’s no reason to panic and in many cases, you won’t notice any difference in vehicle performance. 

A light that flashes requires more prompt attention, indicating a more severe condition that must be checked immediately to prevent damage to the catalytic converter. When you experience a flashing light, minimize driving at high speeds or under heavy loads. You’ll need to have your vehicle serviced as soon as possible. When scheduling service, we suggest calling our Phoenix Chevy service department because our team is properly trained and certified in OBD diagnosis and repair.

Some common things that may cause a service engine soon light to come on—but will probably require an experienced technician from Chapman Chevrolet service department to diagnose— are as follows: 

  • anti-lock brake systems
  • safety restraint systems, such as air bags
  • emissions components
  • computer-related problems, such as faulty sensors

 To help identify the problem, it helps to make a mental note of the conditions that occurred when the light came on. Where you driving at a certain speed? Accelerating or slowing down? Shifting gears?

If you are driving your car and a check engine light comes on, also ask yourself these questions:

1. Did you notice problems when starting the car? (For example: slower to start than normal)

2. Have you noticed a decrease in fuel mileage recently?

3. What is the over-all running condition of the car?

4. Is the engine misfiring or not performing like normal?

5. Are there any new noises from under the hood?

6. Do you notice any odors or see visible smoke from the tail-pipe or from under the hood?

It also helps to note the exact location and wording of the light that has been coming on, because the light may not appear when you take it to the service center. Answering these questions and taking notes may help our team to correctly diagnose the issue and save you time and money on unnecessary repair costs.

We recommend that you have your vehicle checked anytime your check engine light comes on, because even minor problems can turn into major problems. With the help of our experienced service team at Chapman Chevrolet, we can help you solve your car’s check engine issue and get you back on the road in a safe and timely manner.