Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Getting to Know the Gears on Your Car

If you drive an automatic, you’re probably pretty familiar with a few of the gears on your car. Have you ever wondered what the 1 and 2 or H and L gears do, or when you should be using them? As it turns out, the gear switch can be used for more than just the standard park (P), reverse (R), neutral (N) and drive (D).

Although a car with an automatic transition will select gears by itself, it can sometimes be a good idea to pick a gear manually.

Lower Gears and Higher Gears

The gears on a car are a more complicated version of gears on a bike. With a lower gear, your car has more oomph – more force behind it – making it easier to drive up a hill, pull a big trailer, or quickly increase your speed. With a higher gear, the engine turns slower, but allows you to maintain a constant speed for a longer period of time.

Some newer vehicles have a gear selection called overdrive (OD). That feature, which typically defaults to “on,” makes for a speedy switch into a high gear as soon as possible, which can help stretch fuel mileage. This is similar to economy mode in many newer model cars. This mode will keep cars going at a lower RPM, meaning better gas mileage, but will give you less power for quick stops or hilly terrain.

When to Switch Gears

Driving down a steep hill is a good time to switch into a different gear, such as Lower (L), 1 or 2. This move will slow the car down without having to put too much pressure or heat on the brakes. Switching to a lower gear can also be a good idea for traveling up a hill or pulling a trailer. If you find yourself needing to pick up speed quickly without waiting for the transmission, a lower gear will react to your gas pedal instantly.

Selecting 2 means your transmission is locked in second gear. That can be a good option for starting out on an icy road, but beware: a lower gear may make driving down an icy hill more difficult in front-wheel-drive vehicles.

Check your vehicle manual for specific recommendations based on your make and model. For example, some manuals recommend switching off overdrive in city traffic or hilly terrain. Watch this video on using Overdrive and Economy Mode Override to learn more about this feature.

All of these gear selections are absolutely optional. The beauty of an automatic is that you can let your vehicle handle the gear-switching. If you have any other questions about getting to know the gears and functions in your vehicle or about a vehicle you’re thinking about purchasing, stop into Kuehn Motors to talk with our experienced staff.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Festive Ideas to Decorate Your Car For Homecoming

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As a teen, your car is the ultimate symbol of freedom and independence. If you just got a car for your 16th birthday or you drive a family car from your parents, it does not hurt to show it off a little. For homecoming this fall, your school pride will show if you utilize some of these fun ideas to decorate your car.

  • Streamers – you can use streamers taped to the back bumper of your car to create a cool effect similar to a float when you drive. Otherwise, hang them from the ceiling of your car to decorate the inside!
  • Window Markers – these are a necessity when decorating your car for homecoming! Write encouraging messages about your school and show your pride on the windows.
  • Balloons suggests, “Group several different balloons together, and tie them around the car antenna or side mirrors. You can also fill these balloons with candy, and pop them later during the parade.”
  • School Mascot Stuffed Animal – search thrift stores for a cheap stuffed animal that represents your school mascot. This would be especially easy if your school mascot was something like a bear or lion.
  • Empty pop cans – tie empty pop cans to the back bumper so they clink and clank behind the vehicle. You can even spray paint the cans in your school colors!
  • Poster Board – if you can not fit every message you want to write on the windows, buy simple poster board and attach it to the outside of the doors on the car.

If you are worried about being one of only a few who go all out for homecoming, invite friends over to decorate their cars as well. Make it a fun gathering and then all of you can ride into school homecoming week together!

If you are still hoping to get a car, check out our bargain inventory of used vehicles priced under $10k. Buy just in time for Homecoming and decorate it to show off your new ride!

Monday, August 28, 2017

Protect Your Vehicle From Sun Damage

As the summer sun beats down, your automobile can feel the burn if it is left out to the heat and elements. The surface of your car can reach up to 200 degrees on hot days, permanently affecting the paint. Sun damage to your auto paint can cause oxidation and fading, making it look worn before its time. But it is preventable; follow these tips to protect your car from sun damage.

Seek Covered Parking

Just as we do in the winter to keep the snow off, seek out parking that is covered or sheltered. Daily shade, wherever you’re parking, is like wearing a baseball cap to the beach—it’s the easiest protection out there.

Wash and WAX Your Car Often

Wash your car often, but do it in a place that is out of direct sunlight. Whenever you wash and dry your car, finish off with a good wax to protect the paint from ultraviolet damage – not to mention the effects of road dirt and pollution.

Purchase Paint Protection Film

If you can’t avoid direct sunlight and want to be absolutely certain that your car is protected, consider paint protection film. You can purchase a kit that covers part or all of your car’s exterior for the ultimate in protection. There are several brands out there to choose from, like Xpel, Invisible Mask, or Clear Mask. With this type of protection, you can rest assured that your prized car parked in the driveway year-round will be safe from the summer sun.

If you do see oxidation and sun damage, it could be restored

Some mild oxidation to your car’s paint can be fixed with a buff and wax. But, according to Jerry Hurley, of Maaco Collision Repair and Auto Painting, “If the clear coat starts to turn white or chalky, it needs to be repainted.” Check with your local auto painting or auto repair shop to see if they can make your paint look shiny again.

Be sure to enjoy the summer weather and your favorite vehicle, while taking care of its paint and exterior. If you notice your good times are taking a toll on your vehicle, stop into Kuehn Motors for a wash, wax, and interior clean from one of our highly-qualified technicians.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Preparing to Sell Your Car: Do-It-Yourself Detailing

Looking to sell your vehicle but not sure if that PB&J stain in the back seat will be the selling point or not? How about that weird smell coming from under the back seat? These definitely will not be ideal features for your buyer, but have no fear - there is a solution for that. For those who don’t really know what detailing your vehicle entails, here is a simple guide from essentials to getting the job done.

Grab the Essentials

For a full list of suggested tools to detail your car like a pro, the DMV website is a great resource, but the essentials are listed below:
  • A Vacuum Cleaner with multiple attachments - these are to get into the tiny crevices that you think no one will notice, but they will.
  • Rags for different surfaces - Having a rag for wet and dry surfaces, along with one for whipping windows will help keep from pushing dust around.
  • Cleaning Products - upholstery cleaner, carpet cleaner and all-purpose cleaner (for those pesky unknown stains).
  • Q-tips, Cotton Swabs and Toothbrushes - for the tiny areas you won’t be able to get with a rag.
  • A Can of Compressed Air - this is a bonus and can really come in handy for those small, hard-to-reach areas.

Getting Started

There are plenty of tips and tricks to help you get started, but don’t underestimate the power of a good deep clean. When you sell your car, whoever is buying it will want that “new car” feeling, even if it’s only new to them. There are a few things that are more important than others, though. gives a good description of what you need to do to better your chances of selling your vehicle:
  • Clean the Cup Holders - Though it may seem trivial, this is one of the first things that your potential buyer looks at. Giving it a fresh look will help increase your chances of impressing the buyers.
  • Get into the Corners - Even though you may not think the corners are a big deal, your potential buyer will. How you maintain the inside of your car can be perceived as how you well you keep the car maintained overall. So make sure you show them you took care of your car overall.
  • Deep Clean the Fabrics - When inspecting a car to potentially purchase, buyers always look for imperfections in the upholstery. Getting rid of minor stains and making your car look spotless will help you big time.
  • Do a Final Vacuum - Get the last few crumbs under the floor mat and anything else that you may have missed. One last vacuum could be the difference between a sale or not.

These are just a few ways to help better your odds at selling your vehicle and could be what helps you get closer to your next vehicle. If you don’t have time to detail your car yourself before putting it up for sale, you can always contact our service center and we can get the job done for you. To make an appointment, visit

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Preparing to Sell Your Car: Getting More for Your Used Vehicle

Do you have your eye on a new ride but need to sell your old vehicle before you can take the plunge? Getting a new vehicle sometimes depends on getting the best trade-in or sale price on your old ride. Not only will small additions help you to sell your vehicle, but estimates you can get up to 21% more for your vehicle because buyers are willing to pay for cleanliness, confidence and a quality vehicle.

New Tires Can Go a Long Way

Getting new tires, especially in Minnesota, can help value your car tremendously. No one likes the idea of buying a car and then having to put more money into it; in fact, it can drastically lower the value of your car. Having a car with brand new tires also gives the buyer confidence that you took care of your vehicle.

Take Care of Small Maintenance Issues

Small maintenance projects like changing the oil, replacing the air filter and any lights that have burnt out, and filling any low fluids are easy and cheap ways to make your car have the “new” feeling for the person who could potentially be buying it. Plus, most of these things can be done without the help of a mechanic with little to no tools! has a full list of car maintenance tips that can be done yourself and are typically inexpensive. also suggests these small, routine maintenance projects before posting your vehicle online.

Be Prepared for the Buyer

Everyone knows someone who has gotten burned by buying a used car from a private owner. There is no warranty and most of the time you don’t know the person who you are buying from. This is why so many people are skeptical when buying a car from private owners. Be prepared for the buyer and show them that you have nothing to hide with maintenance and vehicle records on hand as well as offering to bring to a certified mechanic if they would prefer to have a third party look it over. This is usually pretty inexpensive and could end up helping you clinch the sale.

Soap and Water are Your Friends

Last but not least, get out the soapy water bucket and dust rag and clean your vehicle inside and out. A clean car looks better and will help value it so that you can get more money and they will be happier and more confident with their purchase. To get the job done like a pro, check out this article from

These are just a few ways to get more for your vehicle and get you one step closer to your new ride. Visit our website to value your trade-in through an official Kelley Blue Book Quote, and start your journey to a new ride!

Monday, June 19, 2017

The Best Places to Watch Fireworks on the Fourth

By the end of June we usually have some sort of idea as to our plans for celebrating Independence Day. Whether it is heading up to the lake, spending the day with family or a town celebration, there are usually fireworks of some sort involved throughout the day or evening. If you don’t have your plans set, check out our list of Fourth of July celebrations happening all over Minnesota!

Austin, Minnesota - Freedom Fest

If you prefer to stay local, check out Freedom Fest in Austin, Minnesota. With celebrations like a street dance and a parade throughout the weekend and a giant firework display at dusk, you are sure to find something for all ages. The giant sledding hill at the Bandshell makes for the perfect spot to relax and watch the show. Also, make sure to grab some grub from all the delicious food trucks and enjoy the music going on all day.

Rochester, Minnesota - Silver Lake Park

Another fun thing to do locally with the family is to head over to Silver Lake Park for Rochester’s July 4th Concert and Fireworks Display. The best part is that the concert is free to the public. Riverside Concerts will be presenting Chuck Blattner directing the Rochester Concert Band as the evening’s main event. The fireworks display will follow the concert that evening.

Other city celebrations going on over the weekend include:

Don’t worry if you will be out of town for the weekend, Minnesotans everywhere love to celebrate Independence Day. Explore Minnesota lists all the Fourth of July parties that will be happening this year according to city. After all, what better way to enjoy the end to a great day than laying out a blanket on the grass while watching Fireworks fill the sky!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

The Best Summer Cars On the Lot at Kuehn Motors

Although the last few May showers haven’t made it feel much like summer, it really is right around the corner. That means it’s time to take the top off, roll the windows down and open the sunroof. In Minnesota, we only get 4-5 short months of beautiful weather, so we need to enjoy it while we can.

The best way to enjoy the short-lived summer sun is with your summer shades on, the radio turned up and the breeze running through your hair. To fully enjoy this scenario, though, your car needs to cooperate. We have compiled the three vehicle categories that best capture the spirit of summer.

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Pictured: Ford Mustang Convertible

The Summer Cruiser

This is the car you take to weekend events like the family grill-out, baseball games, and pretty much anywhere you want to cruise to while enjoying the weather. The summer cruiser sets you apart because of the way you look and feel while driving it. The best cruisers for summer include vehicles like the Dodge Charger. If you’re looking for something a little more on the convertible spectrum, you might try the classic Ford Mustang Convertible or the super-sporty Mazda MX-5 Miata.

The Road-Trip Hauler

The road-trip hauler is the vehicle you take to family reunions, camping, or on that yearly family vacation. This is the vehicle that you can stuff five suitcases, two duffel bags, a cooler, the dog, and the rest of the family into for the long haul across state lines.

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Pictured: Ford Focus SEL Hatchback

If you’re looking for a good road-trip vehicle with more space, try a GMC Acadia or Dodge Durango. If you’re looking for something a bit smaller with better fuel economy, the Ford Focus SEL Hatchback or Ford Edge might be better options.

The Off-Roader

The off-roader is the vehicle you take to the cabin or lake while pulling the old boat behind it. This is the vehicle that’s durable with big tires, perfect for a little summer fun and off-roading.

For every terrain or adventure you take, there is a vehicle to best suit your needs. For the perfect off-roader for your lifestyle, check out a Jeep Wrangler, or Dodge Ram.

Didn’t see your ideal summer ride on this list? Kuehn Motor Company has new vehicles arriving daily. Check our website and view by category, brand, model, and more. There’s still time to get into the perfect summer ride!