7 Car Terms You Should Probably Know

To communicate with your car salesperson or mechanic, you need to speak the language. While no one expects you to be fluent in auto-speak, here are seven car terms you really should know.

Base Price

Image via Flickr by TuRbO_J

Image via Flickr by TuRbO_J

The base price is a car’s cost without any optional extras. This is the cost of the car you’ll see printed on the sticker. It includes the manufacturer’s warranty and all standard equipment, but you’ll pay more than this for extras like leather seats rather than cloth ones, for example. Luxury cars typically have more features built into their base prices than more economical vehicles.

Add-On Interest

Ordinarily, interest is paid at the end of a term, usually a month. Add-on interest, which often applies to car loans, is a bit different because it is calculated at the start of a loan and added to the principal. When a loan company charges add-on interest, you’ll always need to pay some interest on your loan, even if it’s paid off early.

Engine Liter Size

The larger a car’s engine liter size, the greater the space in its engine cylinders for the fuel-air mix. The greater the amount of fuel-air mix, the more powerful an engine can be. That’s why V8 cars are typically more powerful than vehicles with V6 motors.


Torque is twisting force, or the force you feel when your vehicle accelerates. Considering a car’s torque alongside its horsepower provides a more complete picture of its power output. Torque is measured in pound-feet or lb-ft for short. One pound of force applied to a one-foot lever equals one pound-foot.

Torque Steer

Torque steer is a phenomenon which causes a car to turn in one direction or the other whenever you accelerate your vehicle. It’s more common in front-wheel drive cars but can happen in any kind of vehicle. It also often occurs when a car’s drive shafts are of unequal length, although this isn’t always the cause.

A, B, C, and D Pillars

A, B, C, and D pillars are vertical pillars on your car’s body. The A pillars hold either side of your car’s windshield in place. The B pillars are in between the driver and passenger side windows looking along the length of your car. Typically the C pillars hold the sides of your car’s rear window in place. Some longer cars may call this the D pillar and have a C pillar in between their B and D pillars.

Coolant Flush

Your mechanic is likely to give your car a coolant flush every two years or for every 30,000 miles driven, whichever occurs first. During this process, your mechanic will drain all the fluid, often the coolant, from your car’s holding tank, clean the tank out, and replace the fluid with a fresh batch. This process stops damaging corrosion from forming in your engine. Since it’s a complicated procedure that’s essential for your car’s health, you should trust it to your mechanic. Remember these car terms to speak to the motoring experts in your life with confidence.  

Spring Comes to Lewisville

Although Lewisville, Texas, may not receive the same attention as larger Dallas suburbs like Plano, Irving, or Denton, that doesn’t mean that it isn’t one of the most fun and exciting cities in the area. The best part is that spring is right around the corner, bringing events that are sure to delight just about anyone regardless of your tastes or interests. If you’re searching for some events to fill the calendar this spring, here are a few ideas to get you started.

ColorPalooza: A Celebration of Spring

Spring in Lewisville

Image via Flickr by mabecerra


Need to Know: Jump-starting a Car

Jump-starting a car isn’t rocket science, but it requires care and precision. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 19 percent of people injured in battery explosions were trying to jump-start their cars. Follow the steps below to learn how to safely jump-start your car.

Do Your Research

Before you grab the cables, read your car’s manual or do a quick Google search to make sure the vehicle tolerates jump-starting. Many newer cars with electronic ignition systems or alternate fuel systems shouldn’t be jump-started to prevent damage to the vehicle and voiding of the warranty. Next, double-check that both cars involved have the same battery voltage. Finally, make sure the battery is the problem. If you hear clicking when you turn the key, or if the engine starts but won’t turn over, you have another problem altogether. (more…)

4 New Cars Under 40K for the Dallas Driver

Driving in Dallas, Texas, can include a range of different conditions. You could be driving down a perfectly smooth highway at top speed, traveling a bumpy dirt road, or leisurely cruising on a Saturday afternoon. Since there are so many different ways that you could be driving through Dallas, there is a variety of different vehicles that you can choose from. For many people, the last few years have been economically tough. Fortunately, owning a new car doesn’t have to take every dime that you have to your name. If you are looking for a new car at an affordable price, here are four new cars under $40,000 for the Dallas driver.

For Hard Work: Ford F-150

Driving in Dallas for Under 40K - Castle Hill Motors

Image via Flickr by Schlüsselbein2007


Car Won’t Start? How to Diagnose It

At least once in your life you’ll probably experience that dreadful feeling where you stick your key in the ignition, turn it, and nothing happens. Perhaps there’s a whimper or a bizarre noise, but little else. Most people immediately opt for a tow truck and a call to the mechanic at this point without a second thought. However, diagnosing the problem yourself is easier than you may think. The next time you have car troubles, use this handy little guide to help decipher what the problem is.
Car Won't Start? - Blog - Castle Hill Motors

Image via Flickr by The Swedish Seal

Clicking Sounds

If you turn the key and hear rapid, repeated clicking sounds or one click of moderate length, chances are your battery is the culprit. However, testing the battery is easy. When you hop in the car, turn on your windshield wipers and notice the movement. If they move more slowly than normal, your battery is almost completely discharged, and doesn’t have enough left to get the car started. In addition, you should also see your interior or dome lights dim when the wipers start. The best part about this diagnosis is that it’s relatively quick and inexpensive to fix. Most auto parts stores will even check the battery level, which helps ensure that it’s the actual problem and not a secondary pit fall.

Key Won’t Turn

Another frustrating, yet strange problem is the key won’t turn in the ignition. You drove your car home last night, so the reason why it won’t start now is baffling. A majority of the time, this is just because the steering wheel has locked. To fix it, simply turn the wheel to one side while you turn the key in the ignition. Most of the time this will do the trick. In more extreme cases, keys can mess with the wafers inside the ignition lock. When the key turns, the wafers don’t move, and it’s almost as if you have the wrong key. This is usually caused by excessive weight on a key chain, or a spare key that’s different from the original. If you find that this is the cause, you’ll need to hire a locksmith to come out and take a look.

Connection Cables

Sometimes, your battery is fully functioning, yet it won’t get the charge necessary to start the car. In this instance, you probably have a problem with the connection cables or the battery terminals. If the battery is a few years old, deposits start to stick to the battery terminals, not allowing it to transfer power to the engine. Connector cables can also come loose because of a set screw or bolt needs tightening. The best part about this fix is that it only requires you to pop the hood, clean the terminals, and tighten the screw or bolt with a screwdriver or wrench. When it comes to your car, nothing is more frustrating than when it won’t start. However, you should keep your cool before you call friends, family, or a tow truck to come save you. Sometimes, you’re the only mechanic you’ll need.  

Warm Up Your Winter in Lewisville

Winter is the coldest season of the year in Lewisville. However, whether you’re a Lewisville resident or just visiting, you’ll find that this destination offers plenty of ways to help you beat winter’s chill.

See Radney Foster at the MCL Grand Theater

Radney Foster is a country artist who has been playing guitar since he was 12. Performing both in groups and as a solo artist, Foster has become a well-respected singer/songwriter. He’s also released an album that contains his first new solo material in five years. You can enjoy it by seeing Foster perform at the MCL Grand Theater, located at 100 N. Charles St., on Saturday, Jan. 14 at 8 p.m. This performance is particularly special because it kicks off the Texas Tunes concert series, which features artists from many genres who always perform with a flair that makes them feel right at home in the area’s vibrant music scene. Tickets are $20 for general admission, and there is a $5 discount for people who are younger than 12 or older than 60. However, if you are a Lewisville resident and can prove it by producing a valid driver’s license or current utility bill, you can see the show for $10.

Hear an Acoustic Song Circle

Image via Flickr by James Willamor

Image via Flickr by James Willamor

If you’re interested in seeing what Lewisville’s music scene has to offer this winter but the Radney Foster performance won’t work out, consider going to an acoustic song circle that happens every Friday at the art gallery in the MCL Theater. Hosted by the Visual Art League, this laid-back, free event begins at 7 p.m. and lasts for three hours. If you play music, you’re welcome to actively participate by creating music, but you’re also welcome to simply sit back and enjoy the artistry being displayed. This event will happen indefinitely throughout the winter. However, keep in mind that if the City of Lewisville observes a holiday, the song circle will not happen on those days.

Go to a HealthyU Discussion at the Medical Center of Lewisville

The winter is a great time to focus on learning something new. Maybe that goal even ties into one of your New Year’s resolutions. Get started by attending a program presented through the HealthyU Healthy Hour program at the Medical Center of Lewisville. These events are held monthly and prior registration is required for attendance. Although dates vary, doors always open at 5:30 p.m, and the talk begins at 6 p.m. Healthy snacks are served, so you’ll have a good way to pass the time if you get there early. These health education programs are free and delivered by medical professionals. If you’re in need of a little motivation to take better care of yourself, these events could teach you how to do that. Also, you’ll have chances to interact with fellow community members who are concerned about their well-being, which may give you much-needed encouragement for making lasting positive changes. This is just a sampling of the exciting events you could enjoy in Lewisville this winter. Plan to attend at least one.  

3 Car Insurance Myths You Need To Stop Believing

Car insurance is mandatory for everyone in the United States, with the exception of those residing in New Hampshire, Mississippi, and Virginia (the only states that don’t require insurance). Surprisingly, however, many people aren’t sure what they’re covered for or harbor misconceptions about car insurance. Here are some common myths surrounding car insurance that need to be dispelled.

Red Cars Cost More to Insure

Although it seems like a strange belief, there is a long-held rumor among motorists that red cars cost more to insure. Nobody knows for sure how this myth originated, but many say it started with the idea that red cars attract attention more easily and are more likely to be pulled over by traffic officials and receive speeding fines. Some say it links to an association with fast sports cars, which are often red, and therefore it’s assumed that anyone driving a normal red car is also likely to speed. (more…)

Warm Up Lewisville’s Winter at These Events

Most of us like to stay indoors and out of the cold in the winter. But when the chilly season lasts too long, you can go a little stir-crazy. Before you get cabin fever this winter, visit one of these events in Lewisville.

Lewisville Gun Show

If you are a gun connoisseur, the Premier Gun Show in Lewisville is worth braving the cold for. It is located at 1165 S. Stemmons Freeway at the Lakeland Plaza. Visitors can attend on December 3–4, 2016, or January 14–15, 2017. The hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. The whole weekend costs $12, and one day costs $8. Children younger than 12 years enter free. There will be more than 400 tables of guns, knives, ammo, and other shooting supplies. Visitors are invited to buy, sell, and trade!

Old Town Holiday Stroll and Christmas Parade

Image via Flickr by Birmingham Culture

Image via Flickr by Birmingham Culture


A How-To Guide For Buying a Used Car

Lewisville Used Cars - Castle Hills Motors

Image via Flickr by Foot Slogger

You’re finally tired of that rickety, clattering bucket of bolts that you’ve driven since your college days. Or your family has outgrown the sedan that you’ve driven half to death anyway. Purchasing a new car can be a stressful ordeal, one that is often made easier with the possibility of purchasing a used car for a lower price. However, while used cars may appeal to you with a cheaper price tag, you should be careful. Here’s how you can find a car that fits your family’s needs and is worth every cent.


Should You Warm Up Your Car?

Lewisville Winter - Castle Hills Motors

Image via Flickr by henry

With fall in the air and winter fast approaching, many car owners are getting ready to start warming up their cars in the morning to make driving to work easier and more bearable. However, is warming up your vehicle in the morning a good idea? Some experts are conflicted, so we’ve gotten to the heart of the issue to let you know how to handle those chilly mornings and the best way to take care of your vehicle during the winter months.