Archive for May, 2017

As the summer temps continue to climb, Arizonans are lucky to have a diverse landscape where they can beat the heat by driving 2 hours or less. Whether you head north to the Mogollon Rim, east to the White Mountains, or south to the cooler climate of the Tucson mountains, there are plenty of places to camp or simply enjoy a day trip to beat the heat. Before you head out, bring your car to a Chapman Arizona service center for an oil change and complete checkup.

Tonto Bridge a Natural Wonder

Just a few minutes north of Payson on Highway 87, the Tonto Natural Bridge is an easy drive and a spectacular place for a picnic or day of exploration. The natural travertine bridge is believed to be the largest of its kind in the world. It’s a half-mile hike down to the bak of the creek, then several steep steps to get to an observation point. The Tonto Natural Bridge offers a shady retreat usually at least 25 degrees cooler than Phoenix during the height of the summer.

Oak Creek Canyon Delivers Cool Temps

Connecting the south side of Flagstaff with the north end of Sedona, Oak Creek Canyon is an oasis of green with a natural water slide to boot. Slide Rock State Park is an extremely popular spot for Valley dwellers, so make sure and get there early on the weekends. The naturally rock slide is a refreshing ride through the cool waters of Oak Creek. There are a number of cabins and motels on the creek if you want to spend the night.

Red Rocks of Sedona Offer Dynamic Views

If you haven’t been to Sedona, it’s not markedly cooler than Phoenix during the day, but you’ll certainly notice the difference at night. If it’s 110 in Phoenix, it’s probably 100 degrees in Sedona. The nighttime temperatures plummet in the Red Rock territory, though, to a pleasant 80 degrees or less. The stunning Red Rock vistas are worth the drive any time of the year. It’s just an hour and half up Interstate 17 to a world of vortexes, crystals and plenty of tourist options.

Mt. Lemmon Rises Above Tucson

If you’d rather head down south, take a trip to Tucson and then scoot up the hill to the top of Mt. Lemmon. Rising more than 9,000 feet above sea level, temps at the top of the mountain are some 30 degrees cooler than Phoenix. Hiking, camping, fishing and star gazing are all popular activities on or near the summit of Mt. Lemmon. The University of Arizona Sky Center offers educational programs and a great opportunity for visitors to view the night sky without worrying about light pollution. Before heading anywhere across the desert this summer, make sure and get your car inspected at any of the Chapman Arizona Service Centers. A quick oil change, tire rotation and topping off of all your fluids will help you avert disaster on the road.

How are your windshield wipers doing? Just because you don’t use them very often in Phoenix doesn’t mean they can’t wear out. With monsoon season just around the corner, now’s the time for a check of your wipers and a number of other components and parts to make sure you stay safe on the road. Industry experts suggest you change your wiper blades once a year, even if you’ve never used them. The harsh Arizona sun can degrade the rubber to where it’s ineffective, causing streaks and creating a muddy mess during one of our patented summer gully washers. For a quick check of your wipers and other commonly needed parts, swing by any of the Chapman Arizona service centers.

Heat is Arch-nemesis of Your Battery

Batman has the Joker. Superman has Lex Luthor. The Arizona summer sun has your car battery, which is apt to go out at the most inopportune times. Your battery can seem fine in the morning, but then after a trip to the mall and maybe a bite to eat, you go out in the scorching afternoon sun, turn the key, and…nothing. The intense summer heat can rob your battery of years of performance. It’s not uncommon to need a new battery every couple of years, or even sooner if you don’t provide proper maintenance. AAA of Arizona says it responds to about 65,000 calls for dead batteries a year. Experts advise to take your car in and get the battery capacity tested. If it’s below its rated capacity, it’s well worth the hundred bucks or so to get a new one and buy yourself at least a couple of years of trouble-free service. It beats standing in mall parking lot when its 110 degrees waiting for someone to come help.

Keep Cool Baby

If you haven’t had a coolant system flush in a couple of years, now’s the time to schedule one with your local Chapman Arizona service advisor. Making an appointment is as simple as going online and filling out a little information. Once your vehicle is in the service bay, the Chapman techs will go through the cooling system and look for signs of cracked hoses, fraying fan belts and other problems that might leave you at the side of the road on the hottest day of the year.

Water is Your Friend

No matter what type of vehicle you have or how new it might be, keeping a couple of gallons of water in the trunk can be the difference between an inconvenience and a miserable few hours if you get stranded on the highway. It’s particularly important if you leave the Phoenix metro area on less-traveled roads. Take water, a couple of nutrition bars and a fully-charged phone with a mobile charging system to help keep you safe and sound during your summer travels.

“Spring has sprung, the grass has riz, I wonder where the birdies is?” That old chestnut that you may have heard your mom recite is one of the true rites of spring. Drivers may want to add another verse, questioning the locations of the inevitable spring potholes. Although desert drivers don’t have it as bad as people where ice and snow melts create giant craters in the road, an unexpected pothole can do a lot of damage to your car. Chapman Arizona offers the following tips to help avoid high maintenance bills caused by hitting a pothole:

Keep scanning the road. It’s easy to get lost in the music or daydream about what’s for lunch, but constant vigilance is still the best way to avoid potholes. Keep an eye out for water in the roadway. It may just be a wet spot, but it also might be hiding a giant hole in the road.

Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Keeping your tires up to the recommended pounds per square inch (psi) is an important part of avoiding damage from potholes. The more air you have, the more of a cushion it provides to protect your wheels and suspension from damage. A tire inflation check is just part of an overall inspection provided by your Chapman Arizona dealership.

Get problems looked at early. If you hit a pothole and then notice your car is perhaps pulling to the right, making weird noises or operating irregularly in some other fashion, it’s best to get it checked out before the problem gets worse.

Report potholes to authorities. The road department can’t be everywhere. Help out your fellow drivers and report potholes to the street authority in your city.

Drive defensively. If you see a pothole at the last second, it may be better to take those lumps than to swerve and hit another vehicle. Stay aware of your surroundings at all times and drive defensively. It’s better to throw your car out of alignment than to cause a more serious accident by overreacting.

If you’ve hit a pothole and are concerned about vehicle damage, schedule an appointment with your local Chapman Arizona dealership for a vehicle inspection. While some damage may be readily apparent, such as a flat tire, other things like a minor misalignment might not be as noticeable. Damage to the alignment, suspension and brakes can have long-term consequences that will drive the cost of repair higher than if you take care of the problem early.