Perfect Car-Themed Valentine’s Day Gifts For the Enthusiast in Your Life

MINI Accesssories - car-themed Valentine’s Day gifts

MINI Accessories are the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for the MINI Enthusiast in your life.

Is your valentine an auto enthusiast? Are you struggling to come up with a cool car gift he or she will love? We’ve found some clever and creative car-themed Valentine’s Day gifts that we hope will inspire you that you can get for the MINI lover in your life.

Whether you’re adding onto your sweetheart’s car with a new app or product or you’re getting them a cool knickknack, there’s a whole world of crazy car stuff out there. Of course there are lots that are perfect for MINI Motoring Enthusiasts, but there are also some that are good no matter what your significant other drives.

Gifts For MINI Lovers

For a MINI lover, you can get them MINI sunglasses, a MINI umbrella, MINI bags, bracelet, cufflinks, phone cases, stuffed animals and more. You can even get them MINI items for their pet. If you want to help them really show off their MINI, then you can get them the John Cooper Works performance package and enable their MINI to become even faster than before.

Gifts For Car-Lovers

If your significant other isn’t a MINI lover yet (just give it time and they will be), here are a few ideas you can use to get them a car-themed Valentine’s Day gift that they will love.  A year’s subscription to satellite radio is always a great hit for music and sports lovers alike. You can also get something to make driving easier like Smart Driving Assist or a remote car starter.

Real auto enthusiasts and racecar lovers will appreciate a brand new paint job—maybe with some racing stripes (to match the ones on your MINI of course)?

Stop by MINI of Pittsburgh to pick-up the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for your significant other. We  hope to see you soon and wish you and yours a Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Warming Up Your Car: Are You Just Wasting Gas?

When it’s cold out, many people insist on idling their cars for extended periods of time. Although we all like a nice and toasty cabin, some extended research has shown that idling your car really just increases pollutants in the air and wastes gas.

According to the Washington Post, most modern cars are designed for pretty severe conditions. Unless you live in Siberia, your car doesn’t really need to warm up for that long, if at all. The idea behind warming up your car is to eliminate any moisture in the system. In the summer, it easily reaches temperatures required to do so. In the winter, it may take an extra 30 seconds or so.

In fact, and energy agency recently determined that warming up your car is really a thing of the past and only serves to increase fuel consumption: “the test results showed that with a 5-minute warm-up total fuel consumption increased by 7 to 14 percent and with a 10-minute warm-up total fuel consumption increased by 12 to 19 percent,” the Natural Resources Canada energy agency reported.

Why has this change happened? Well, electronic fuel injection is one of the main reasons. In the ‘80s and ‘90s it was difficult to find a car that didn’t have a carburetor, which needed to be warmed to get the right air-fuel mix. Now, your MINI engine has advanced sensors and can basically warm up as you drive.

To learn more about how to prepare your MINI for winter, check out our website. Thanks for choosing MINI of Pittsburgh and Motor on!

7 Tips for Winter Driving Safety Here in Pittsburgh

It’s that time of year again – when the temperatures drop below freezing and severe weather warnings are imminent. As the weather continues to change, winter driving safety is crucial to keep in mind, and driving defensively becomes more important than ever. Here are a few tips to help you drive safely this winter:

 

  1. Warming up your car’s engine before driving – just make sure you aren’t doing it in an enclosed space, like a garage.
  2. Keep up with routine maintenance is especially important when preparing for the winter, but one of the most pressing issues is your tires. Tire pressure decreases faster in lower temperatures, and good traction is key to minimizing slipping on icy roads.
  3. Keep your gas tank at least half full during the colder months. Having low levels of gas in your tank can cause freezing along the gas-line.
  4. Keep an eye on weather reports in advance so that you are prepared for bad conditions.
  5. When driving in bad conditions, coast to a stop as much as possible without using your brakes, and accelerate slowly. Don’t try to force your vehicle up hills without getting a running start, as accelerating quickly uphill will only cause your wheels to spin.
  6. As an added precaution, make sure you keep an emergency kit in your vehicle and always have your cell phone charged.
  7. When in doubt, just stay home.

 

Winter driving safety is only one aspect of staying safe in bad conditions, but keeping roads safe in bad weather conditions is part of keeping not only yourself and your family, but also your community, safe overall. Let us at MINI of Pittsburgh know what you do to drive safely in the winter time in the comments below or on our Facebook page.

Statistics of Cell Phone Use While Driving Tell a Sad Story

When you look at the very harrowing statistics of cell phone use while driving, one thing becomes very clear. If you are doing it, and so far you have not been involved in an accident, you are simply one of the lucky ones. Every time you get on the road and use your cell phone while behind the wheel, you put yourself further at risk of having that luck run out.

Nine Americans lose their lives every day from distracted driving. And on average, one out of every four vehicle accidents involved cell phone use.

Driving requires focus. As boring as it can be, and as much as we’ve done it over the years, it still requires just as much focus as it always has. Using a cell phone for either talking or texting always diminishes that focus.

It may just be for seconds. But, according to Huffington Post, the number of seconds that one’s eyes must leave the road in order to send a text is five. The best way to avoid becoming a statistic is by staying vigilant and keeping your eyes on the prize at all times.

No matter if you’re behind the wheel of your MINI or any other car, please don’t text or call and drive.  Your life is worth more than a phone call.

Drive-in Theater Tips: Getting the Most Out of Your Summer

With warmer weather on the way, Drive-ins like Twin Hi-Way will start filling up with families eager to take advantage of the spring and summer seasons. In order to help you get the most out of your drive-in experience, we’ve put together a list of drive-in theater tips.

Your MINI is ideal for drive-ins because it’s compact, sleek, and capable of gliding in and out of the lots without any problems. Not only that, but MINI also has an array of convertible options (all available here at MINI of Pittsburgh), all of which are excellent for the drive-in.

According to Drive-ins.com, you may want to consider bringing lawn chairs if take a less comfortable car than your MINI. By bringing your own chairs, you can stretch your legs anytime you want and enjoy the fresh air.

This brings us to our next tip: bring mosquito repellant. Although the bugs shouldn’t be too bad until the late summer, no one enjoys getting bit up. We recommend aerosol spray cans, which are especially easy to apply.

Although the theater may remind you, it’s always good to start your car every once in a while. Nothing will ruin the evening faster than having to call someone to give you a jumpstart.

Last but not least, choose a movie that everyone can enjoy. Most theaters offer double-features, so make sure you’re seeing films young kids (or friends that act like kids) can sit through for a long time.

Stay Tuned to our blog to keep up with all the latest tips for Summer fun in your MINI!

Warm Weather Driving Tips: How to Increase Your Car’s Resale Value

Although this time of year is great for getting out in the sun, increasing temperatures and UV rays can be bad for your car. We’ve put together a list of warm weather driving tips to help you beat the heat.

According to Wikihow, keeping your car cool and out of direct sunlight can increase the life of your car, as well as its resale value. The best thing you can do while parking is to seek out those shady spots. If you can’t find one, consider buying a sun shade. By simply blocking out light, your car will stay cool and protected.

While it might be common sense for some of you, it can be easy to forget to check your coolant levels regularly. Check to make sure your car doesn’t need topped-off every once in a while, and make sure to flush the coolant out every few years. This will eliminate clogs and get rid of old fluid.

Our last tip is to drive when it’s cooler, such as early morning or late evening. A lot of people can’t help it when they drive during the day, but leaving 30 minutes earlier can have drastic effects. By avoiding gridlock and direct sunlight, you’ll reduce your carbon footprint and keep your car out of the heat.

To keep your car up-to-date and fully protected against the summer sun, stop in for a quick service here at MINI of Pittsburgh.