4 Essential Summer Safety Items for Your Vehicle

Whether you’re staying close to home or venturing out a bit farther for some fun day trips in Hutchinson, Kansas, keep your family safe by storing emergency supplies in your vehicle. Here are four essential summer safety items that you won’t want to do without.

First aid kit

A first aid kit is one of the first things you should have on hand when you’re driving. You can purchase a pre-assembled on online or at a local retail store. Or put one together yourself, including items like gauze, bandages, antibacterial ointment, and tweezers. Make sure to include seasonal items like bug spray and sunscreen.

Sun shelter

You might also want to pack a portable sun shelter. This will provide welcome shade in the event that your vehicle breaks down on an extremely hot day and you have to wait a long time for roadside assistance to arrive.

Portable battery charger

Summer heat can take a toll on your car’s battery. Help prevent dead battery scenarios by stowing a portable car battery charger in your glovebox or somewhere in the trunk area.

Bottled water

Avoid dehydration by storing a case of bottled water in the trunk for emergencies. This will help you stay healthy and comfortable if you’re stranded on the road, especially if the breakdown happens in a remote area where convenience stores are few and far between. 

Midwest Superstore wishes you and yours a safe and healthy summer. Remember to call us with any car care questions you have or to schedule a maintenance appointment for your vehicle.

Cool Kansas Museums to Tour Virtually in May

Social distancing doesn’t mean depriving yourself of entertainment and education. If you have a thirst for knowledge or simply want to see something interesting, there are several cool Kansas museums that you can tour virtually from the comfort of your computer.

The Kansas Museum of History

The Kansas Museum of History in Topeka is a must-see, even if you’re only visiting online. The museum offers virtual tours of a ton of past exhibits and breathtaking artifacts, including Game Faces: Kansans in Sports, All That Glitters: Dressing Up & Stepping Out, and our personal favorite, Cars: The Need for Speed.

Ulrich Museum of Art

Want to feel inspired? There’s an app for that, compliments of Wichita State University’s Ulrich Museum of Art. A free app available on the App Store and Google Play lets you visit the Martin H. Bush Outdoor Sculpture Collection any time of day and take a self-guided tour of the museum’s many beautiful works of art. The app also features interactive maps that let you plan for your next in-person visit.

The Cosmosphere

While nothing quite matches the awe you feel when you visit the Cosmosphere — found right here in Hutchinson — in person, the Cosmosphere Virtual Tour is a nice substitute. Whether you’re interested in the experience of being an astronaut or want to learn more about where we fit into the vast universe, the virtual tour helps entertain with high-quality images and supplementary audio and video.

Staying safe and healthy doesn’t have to carry the price of boredom. If your kids are feeling restless, sit down with them and take a virtual tour of one of Kansas’ best museums. For all your vehicle needs, contact the team at Midwest Superstore — we’re here to help during this trying time.

Should I Fix or Replace My Old Car?

If you love your old vehicle but find yourself daydreaming about the reliability and safety of a newer one, you’re not alone. Here are some pointers to help you know whether you should fix or replace your aging ride.

Fixing it

Repairing your current vehicle is usually the most budget-friendly option to go with. Fixing your older car is almost always less pricey than buying a newer one. It’s also a wise decision if finances are tight right now and you need the vehicle to last another year or two.

Sentimental attachment is another reason to fix it rather than replace it. Whether it’s your first car or the dream car that you spent many months saving for, repairs are a good way to go if you want to hold on to the vehicle for as long as possible.

Replacing it

In many cases, it’s best to purchase a newer vehicle. If your current one often leaves you stranded and starts needing frequent repairs, or if the repairs start costing more than half of the vehicle’s value, it’s probably time to part ways with your old vehicle.

A newer vehicle has the advantages of being more reliable and safer. Because it’s newer, it has a lower risk of breaking down. More recent models also have the benefit of contemporary safety tech like blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, park assist, and automatic emergency braking. 

If the time has come to say goodbye to your old vehicle and start enjoying a new one, buying a pre-owned vehicle is a great way to save on a newer model. Midwest Superstore has an array of used vehicles to accommodate different budgets and preferences. Browse our inventory online here.

Spring Cleaning Tips for Your Car

As we put winter behind us, it’s time to look forward to warm weather and salt-free roads. With sunny days and a bright, blue sky comes the motivation to clean, leading many people to deep clean their homes in the spring. But what about your car? After the hard winter months, it likely needs a good wash too, and we’ve put together these spring cleaning tips for your car to help you out.

Exterior cleaning

There are a number of things you should do to clean the exterior of your car:

  • Wash the entire body with a carwash product. Use two buckets — one for clean, soapy water and the other for dirty rinse water.
  • Scrub your tires. Use a firm brush and tire-cleaning spray.
  • Clean the underbody with a hose.
  • Dry the body with a clean, microfiber towel.

Interior cleaning

When you’re done with the exterior, move on to the interior (although it doesn’t really matter which order you do it in).

  • Remove all the clutter in the car.
  • Vacuum the rugs, floor mats, seats, and trunk.
  • Use a cleaning spray and microfiber cloth to clean the dash and console, as well as other non-seating and non-leather surfaces.
  • For leather upholstery, use an approved cleaning agent.
  • Clean the windows by applying glass cleaner directly onto cloth.
  • Clean the floor mats, even if you’ve vacuumed them. Use carpet cleaner on carpet floor mats, and soapy water on rubber mats.

When you’re done cleaning the car, the next step is to take it to Midwest Superstore to make sure all of the mechanical parts are in good working order!

How to Start Saving Up for a Car

A vehicle is one of the most important purchases you’ll make, but gathering the funds you need can be daunting. Fortunately, though, saving up for a car doesn’t have to be painful when you follow these tips.

Make regular deposits and start early

A sizable down payment on a car can make your monthly payments more manageable. An easy way to get the down payment you need is to start saving early, taking a little bit from every paycheck and putting it into a savings account that is designated specifically for your vehicle funds. Small deposits over a long period of time make the process much more manageable.

Increase your income and reduce your expenses

Easier said than done, right? But when saving for a car, every little bit helps. Consider getting a side hustle, even if it only nets you an extra $100 a week. Also cut out unnecessary expenses, like a daily coffee or eating out.

Don’t forget your trade-in

If you currently own a car, that can go a lot way when purchasing your next vehicle. Keep it in good shape so that you will make more when you sell it or trade it in.

By following these steps, you’ll be well on your way to affording your next ride. You can also speak with our finance experts here at Midwest Superstore to learn more about the best solutions for financing a vehicle.

New Tech for Old Cars: How to Update Your Tired Ride

They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but you can definitely trick out an old vehicle with new advanced features. If that’s what you’d like to do, you’ll find plenty of new tech for old cars to bring your outdated ride into the new decade — or even century.

Install a Rearview Camera

Rearview cameras have been around for a few years now, and now they’re required as standard equipment on new cars. Even if you have an older car, you can still get one as well. Rearview cameras are reasonably affordable and easy to install.

Add Seat Heaters

Seats that keep you warm in the winter and even have massagers to keep your back from hurting on long drives are the height of vehicle luxury today. And luckily, there are plenty of ways to add these features to your older car. It’s as easy as getting a heated massaging seat cover or cushion and plugging it into your USB port or cigarette lighter.

Get a New Stereo

If you’re not happy with your stereo, you can always upgrade to a new one. There are tons of aftermarket stereos on the market. Try finding one with Bluetooth® capabilities so you can sync your phone to the sound system.

If you’re ready to give your older ride an upgrade, visit our service department at Midwest Superstore and we’ll be glad to help you order and install the accessories you want.

3 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Car

As you think about your priorities for 2020, consider New Year’s resolutions for your car and your driving habits. These three suggestions are a great place to start.

Prioritize regular maintenance

Staying current on car maintenance is crucial if you want to avoid excessive wear and tear. Three of the most important things to keep up with are checking brakes and tires, changing the oil, and cleaning your car. Brakes and tires keep you in control, while fresh oil keeps things running smoothly. And, if you regularly clean your car (inside and out), you’ll maintain resale value.

Don’t drive distracted

Distracted driving leads to an average of nine deaths per day in the U.S. In 2020, resolve not to contribute to the problem. Putting your phone out of your reach is a start, but distracted driving can also occur when you’re changing the radio or using apps, taking photos, checking email, eating and drinking, and putting on makeup. Resolve to keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road at all times.

Take a road trip

Want to mix things up? Try taking more road trips in the new year. You can take day trips to areas in Kansas, such as Clinton State Park, Tallgrass Prairie National Park, and Wichita, or you can try a long-distance road trip to see a part of the country you’ve never visited. Road trips are often more affordable than flying, and they’re a great way to get off the beaten path.

Here at Midwest Superstore, we wish you a happy 2020 and the best of luck in achieving your resolutions.

Fun Holiday Events in Hutchinson, KS

The holidays are right around the corner, which means it’s almost time to trim the tree, hang stockings, and start your holiday shopping. Amid all the bustle, take some time to enjoy the season with your loved ones at these holiday events in Hutchinson, Kansas.

Nights Before Christmas at the Hutchinson Zoo: If you have little ones who love animals and the holidays, the Hutchinson Zoo’s Nights Before Christmas event is the place to be. Your family can enjoy a beautiful light show, photos with Santa, cookies with cocoa, and a festive train ride. The event opens Dec. 7 and is free for zoo members.

Sing-A-Long and Cookie Exchange: If you’ve got a penchant for baking and a song in your heart, consider attending the holiday Sing-A-Long and Cookie Exchange on Dec. 10 at the Hutchinson Recreation Commission. You’ll love swapping cookies and singing carols with your Hutchinson neighbors at this holly jolly event.

Robinson’s 11th Annual Free Craft Show: On Dec. 7 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., attend Hutchinson’s largest craft fair in the Sunflower North building at the Kansas State Fairgrounds. The show is free for all to attend and will host 104 booths. Find the perfect trinkets for your loved ones or just enjoy being surrounded by the creative works of your Hutchinson neighbors.

The holidays are one of our favorite times of year here at Midwest Superstore, and these local festivities are the perfect way to celebrate the spirit of the season.

Preparing Your Car for Winter Months

With winter right around the corner, now is the ideal time to get ready. The winter months can lead to poor driving conditions, bad weather, and cooler temperatures, which can drastically affect your driving ability. Preparing your car for winter is simple, as long as you keep some basic things in mind, such as maintenance, an emergency roadside kit, and so forth.

According to US News, one of the first things you should do is check the coolant/antifreeze system. You should generally mix a 50/50 blend of water and antifreeze to prevent your engine block from cracking. Coolant will maintain proper temperature levels within the engine, but it’s important to remember to add antifreeze.

You’ll also want to check the tire pressure and tread. Air pressure can change with temperature, which means your tires may lose inflation as the weather gets cooler. While you’re checking the pressure, be sure to look at tire conditions as well. If you notice any cracking, bulges, or bald spots on the tread, you need new tires before the weather gets bad.

Next, put together an emergency roadside kit. You should keep blankets, a first-aid kit, gloves, and an extra ice scraper. Many people prefer to keep an empty gas can in case they run out of fuel, as well as high-energy, shelf-stable snacks and drinking water in case you get stranded.

For all your winter maintenance prep, give us a call or stop by and see us at Midwest Superstore so we can keep you safe throughout the entire season.

Celebrate Halloween in Hutchinson

Are you looking for some family-friendly ways to celebrate Halloween in Hutchinson throughout the month of October? Here at Midwest Superstore, we have a few fun ideas for you to try out.

“Boo”seum Spook Walk

On Oct. 15, head to the Reno County Museum with the kids to explore the museum and ghosts from Reno County’s past. Dress your children up, bring a bag or bucket for candy, and watch your children make friends and learn at the same time. The cost is $2.50 per child; adults accompanying children enter for free. Learn more here.

Space Out Saturday: Halloween in Space!

In honor of the 50th anniversary of our lunar landing, the Cosmophere Lobby will be hosting this event from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Oct. 19. Kids can learn about the International Space Station and create their own spiders using Styrofoam cups. The day includes an Innovator’s Workshop (ages 5 to 10), Storytime (ages 5 or younger), and Space Trek (ages 5 to 10). Learn more here.

Boo at the Zoo

Take the family to the Hutchinson Zoo on Oct. 26 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Kids are encouraged to wear non-scary Halloween costumes. They can enjoy candy, prizes, games, and bounce houses. Learn more here.