Celebrate Summer at the Harvey County Free Fair

One of our favorite summer events here at Midwest Ford is just a short drive away — the Harvey County Free Fair. This annual celebration, which takes place Aug. 1-5 this year, features livestock exhibits, 4H events, arts and crafts, rides, and more. It’s an exciting time you won’t want to miss.

Events kick off Aug. 1 with food and woodworking judging, as well as a special rocketry event and a parade in downtown Newton at 7 p.m. On Aug. 2, you can see home arts, arts and crafts, and 4H project displays. The beer garden will open at 5 p.m., and you can also enjoy a charity tug-of-war and mud volleyball tournament. On Aug. 3, the main event is the 2019 ATV Rodeo. On Aug. 4, visit Market at the Park to check out a wide range of arts, crafts and locally made products on sale.

Other highlights on the fair schedule include livestock shows and judging, a demolition derby, a dog costume contest, and the Barnyard Olympics.

As indicated by the name, it doesn’t cost visitors anything to enter the Harvey County Free Fair. However, be sure to bring along some cash for carnival rides and all the tasty food and drinks you’ll find. We hope to see you there!

Summer Activities in Hutchinson, KS

As you plan your summer, you won’t have to look far to find fun warm-weather activities. Here at Midwest Ford, we’ve put together a list of our favorite adventures right here in Hutchinson.

Strataca

Cool down this summer with a visit to the Strataca. This salt mine museum take visitors 650 feet underground where temperatures are always cool. Multiple tour options are available, including a Salt Mine Express train ride and the Salt Blast Pass + Salt Safari, which includes all of the available tours.

RV Camping at Sand Hills State Park

Covering more than 1,000 acres, Sand Hills State Park is a popular destination for campers and fishers. The clean, pleasant campground offers hookups and a quiet space to enjoy a summer weekend away from everyday life.

Hutchinson Zoo

Summer is a great time of year to visit the Hutchinson Zoo. This small zoo offers free admission and free parking, so it’s a great way to spend an afternoon with limited time.

Kansas State Fair

Hutchinson is home to the Kansas State Fair, which is always a fun way to celebrate the final days of summer. This year, the Kansas State Fair runs from September 6-15. Join the hundreds of thousands of visitors that come through to enjoy rides, farm animals, live entertainment, and delicious fair food.

To learn more about all the awesome summer activities in Hutchinson, visit us at Midwest Ford!

How to Prepare Your Car for Summer

The summer weather is rolling in, which means it’s time for another round of seasonal maintenance. Here are a few ways to prepare your Ford for summer.

Change the oil

Changing the oil in your car is one of the most important routine maintenance tasks. Old oil can’t lubricate, cool, or protect vital engine components as well as fresh oil can. Check your vehicle’s owner manual to determine how often you need to visit Midwest Ford for an oil change. Thanks to advances in engine oil technology, the 3,000-mile rule is irrelevant. Most vehicles can go anywhere from 5,000 to 15,000 miles between oil changes.

Check the battery

Checking your battery is a great way to start off summer. After all, you don’t want to end up stranded because of a dead battery. Inspecting your battery doesn’t involve a lot of labor and can be done in a few minutes

Start by inspecting the battery for any bulges, bumps, or other deformities. Remove any corrosion from the posts and tighten the connections. If your Ford’s battery is more than three years old, it’s time to consider replacing it.

Inspect the tires

Inspecting your car’s tires for damage helps improve your safety on the road. Keep an eye out for any bumps, bulges, or uneven tread wear. It pays to check each tire’s pressure every week too. As warmer weather rolls in, the tire pressure is likely to increase. If left unchecked, that could lead to a blowout!

To get your Ford ready for the summer season, visit the Midwest Ford service team today!

Warning Signs That It’s Time to Change Your Brakes

Brakes are among your vehicle’s most important components, but there are few reliable guides (like mileage or vehicle age) for knowing when to change them. That’s because brakes wear differently depending on environmental conditions and driving habits. Instead, you should pay attention to a few key signs that will let you know it’s time for new brakes.

First, listen for strange sounds. Most brake pads come with wear indicators, which are essentially a thin strip of metal that begins to rub on the rotor once the pad gets low. If you hear squeaking or squealing, it’s a sign you may need new brakes. Also listen for grinding, as this could be a caliper hitting the rotor.

Next, pay attention to how your car is driving. If you notice that your vehicle pulls to one side or the other when you hit the brakes, you may have a caliper that’s stuck. Even if your foot isn’t on the brake pedal, pulling is likely caused by a bad brake component.

Finally, be alert for tactile signs. For instance, you may notice vibrations, thuds, or pulsing when you step on the brakes. These are other signs that your rotors might be warped, as you shouldn’t really feel anything through the pedal if the brakes are normal.

If you think it’s about time to change your brakes, or if you need our certified service team to check for you, schedule your service appointment at Midwest Ford today!

An All-Electric Ford F-150 Pickup Truck Is Happening

Unparalleled power and eco-friendly efficiency are at odds no more. This January, Ford’s president revealed that a battery-electric Ford F-150 is in the automaker’s future plans, joining the elite group of automakers (like Tesla and Rivian) that have promised upcoming fully-electric pickup trucks. Although there is no set release date yet for the all-electric Ford F-150, we think it’d be fitting if America’s best-selling truck lineup was the first one to make it to market with an all-electric, cutting-edge pickup truck.

Ford’s president, Jim Farley, revealed that the automaker is going to “be electrifying the F-Series — both battery-electric and hybrid” over the next few years. A hybrid F-150 is set to debut in 2020, which means that the F-series will likely enter its next generation for the 2021 model year. If this is the case, the electric and hybrid powertrains will accompany a fully redesigned Ford truck that boasts cutting-edge tech and design.

No specifics on the upcoming Ford F-150 hybrid or EV (electric vehicle) have been released yet. However, Ford has been pivoting to offer more electric powertrains across its lineup, including in its new electric crossover that is inspired by the Mustang’s iconic design.

To test drive the 2019 Ford F-150, stop by Midwest Ford!

What Is FordPass?

In 2016, Ford debuted its very own mobile app, known as FordPass. With this tool, you can access features for your Ford vehicle that will enhance your lifestyle and make everyday driving easier. A membership to FordPass is now free and available to anyone. Here’s some of what you can expect from this innovative system.

Remote Control

When you download FordPass and connect it to your Ford vehicle with SYNC® Connect, you can use the app to maintain and monitor your Ford. FordPass with SYNC® Connect offers remote start and stop functions, as well as remote locking and unlocking. You can even schedule when your Ford vehicle will start so it’s ready to go when you need it.

Vehicle Information

In addition to controlling a connected Ford vehicle with FordPass, you can also use it to access relevant information, including tire pressure, fuel and fluid levels, and even the vehicle’s service history.

Fuel Finder

It’s often tempting to drive around looking for the lowest gas prices. With FordPass, you can skip this step and use your phone to search for gas by brand or grade and compare prices at stations near you.

FordPay

The FordPay feature lets you make payments virtually from within your FordPass app, adding extra convenience to your daily routine.

For more information on FordPass and how you can stay connected with you Ford, contact us at Midwest Ford!

Fun Activities in Hutchinson, Kansas

It may be winter here in Kansas, but that does not mean you have to stay at home or even indoors. If you want to add some fun to your family’s life, here are some great activities in Hutchinson.

Strataca

Head 650 feet into the ground and visit an active salt mine. The underground temperatures stay cool and constant year-round, so it is great to visit no matter what the weather is like. There are additional add-on tour packages available for a more immersive experience.

Cosmosphere

Instead of going underground, look to the skies with a visit to the Cosmosphere. This Smithsonian-affiliated museum lets you experience the thrill of space exploration with hands-on exhibits and activities. The museum is open seven days a week.

Hutchinson Zoo

If you are looking for a free family activity, head to the zoo. It is open every day from 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. The zoo has a wide range of animals including deer, bobcats, porcupines, reptiles, and a variety of birds.

Dillon Nature Center

Spend some time outdoors at the Dillon Nature Center. Here you can walk along a variety of trails, spend some time fishing, or even rent a canoe (only available seasonally). The Nature Center frequently offers programs for children and families.

To make sure your car is ready for all your Hutchinson-area activities, schedule a service appointment at Midwest Ford.

Get Your Car Ready for Winter

Winter has arrived. If you haven’t prepared your car for the change of season, it’s time to get on it! Here are some easy tips for getting your car ready for winter that will help keep you safe and warm on the road.

Follow your maintenance schedule

Check your owner’s manual — it has a complete yearly schedule for you to follow so you can keep your car in the best shape possible. You’d be amazed at how much of a difference regular maintenance has on your vehicle’s performance.

Have car problems looked at

If you’re noticing any issues right now, like trouble starting your car or stalling, get it looked at right away, because it’s only going to get worse as the weather gets colder. It’ll be a much bigger inconvenience to get stranded with a dead battery than to have it replaced now.

Replace your wipers and refill washer fluid

Winter driving means dirty, salty, icy windshields, without much or any rain to clean them. Make sure your washer fluid is filled up and your wiper blades are fresh so you can see through your windshield.

Put an emergency kit together

This is vital year-round but especially important during the winter. You should keep water and dry foods in the car, as well as an extra set of warm clothes and blankets, a flashlight, and flares. You should also have a shovel and a bag of ice or cat litter in your car’s trunk; if your car gets stuck in the snow, these items will help you clear a path and gain more traction.

Schedule a maintenance check at Midwest Ford to make sure your car is ready for the demands of winter driving.

Thanksgiving Travel Tips

Thanksgiving travel tips

Fall is flying by, and the holidays are almost upon us. The holiday season is a busy travel time for all, as many Americans travel home to visit loved ones and take part in festive celebrations. To make holiday travel as painless and stress-free as possible, there are various things you can do to prepare beforehand to help make travel plans go smoothly. Here are some Thanksgiving travel tips.

  • Plan ahead: This is the simplest and one of the most important travel tips for the holiday season. Rather than scrambling at the last minute to decide when you’re going to drive or fly home, make plans as far in advance as possible. When you have time to plan in advance, you can plan out the most effective driving route, find the cheapest airfare, or avoid particularly busy airports.
  • Avoid the heaviest travel days: The Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the Saturday after will be among the busiest travel days of the year. If possible, avoid these days entirely. If you have to travel on these days and you’re driving, aim to leave early in the morning — such as at 6 a.m. —

to avoid the busiest road times.

  • Factor in extra travel time: Whether you’re stuck in traffic or stuck in line at the airport, you know that holiday travel typically comes with longer wait times. Arrive extra early to the airport to check in and make it through security, and factor in extra driving time so you don’t feel stressed.

Make sure your car is ready for the holidays, too by scheduling a maintenance check with our trained technicians at Midwest Ford.

Ford Celebrates 15th Anniversary of Driving Skills for Life

Driving Skills for Life

Fifteen years ago, Ford founded the Driving Skills for Life program, which is dedicated to spreading awareness for safer driving habits in order to reduce fatal and life-altering traffic accidents. The company has not only changed lives, but also reached out and collaborated with countless individuals, organizations, and communities working to increase awareness about the dangers of inexperienced and unsafe driving habits.

 

Part of the celebration of the anniversary involves honoring what Ford is referring to as the “Unsung Heroes of Highway Safety.” These six candidates were honored for their commitment to keeping America’s roads safe.

  • Martha Tessmer lost her son to distracted driving and decided to use her 38 years of teaching experience to design lesson plans around the perils of distracted driving.
  • Jacob Smith came perilously close to death in a collision and travels the country speaking to young people about vehicle safety.
  • From 2005-2006, Tazewell County of Illinois lost 15 young people in accidents, and award winner John Shallenberger, a sheriff’s deputy, formed Operation Teen Safe Driving that helped cut fatalities by 50 percent.
  • Purnima Uni created the “Be in the Zone” teen motor vehicle safety initiative at a children’s hospital in Franklin, Tennessee.
  • Andy Pilgrim of Bowling Green, Kentucky, is a race car driver that uses his time off of the track to talk to parents about how their driving habits influence their children.
  • Sandy Spavone founded National Youth Traffic Safety Month and has worked with youth peer education programs for 16 years.

 

At the event, Ford also unveiled WheelSwap, a driving simulation geared towards teaching inexperienced drivers better habits.

 

In coming years, Ford’s Driving Skills for Life program will continue its work in community outreach and promoting a healthier, safer life for all drivers on the road. Jim Vella, president of the Ford Motor Company Fund, said, “We thank each of our honorees for their important work, and for representing the countless safety advocates… who help keep our families safe everyday.”

 

If you need a new vehicle for the young driver in your life, visit us at Midwest Ford.