New Year’s Resolutions for Safer Driving

New Year’s resolutions for safer driving

As 2018 draws to a close, many people are planning their resolutions for the New Year. Some will set goals to become healthier, save money, or streamline their lives to become more efficient. If you want to set a goal that will affect your day to day and make you healthier and happier in 2019, consider these New Year’s resolutions for safer driving.

Have a Seat Belt Rule

With a seat belt rule, you will not start your car until your passengers of all ages have buckled up. Apply this rule to the family dog by properly restraining him or her, too.

Make Safety a Priority

If you plan to buy a car soon, put safety at the top of your list. With safety technology making big advancements each year, it should be easy to find an affordable vehicle with the features you want. Look for vehicles with driver-assistive technologies like what you’ll find in Ford Co-Pilot 360™,which comes standard on the 2019 Ford Fusion and Ford Edge.

Put Your Focus on the Road

Distracted driving causes thousands of accidents each year.Make it a goal to be focused while behind the wheel. In addition to putting away your phone, promise not to eat, adjust your GPS, or do anything else that draws your attention away from the road while driving.

Whether you are fan of making resolutions or not, know that we will stay committed to meeting your automotive needs at Van Drunen Ford in 2019. We wish you and your family a happy New Year.

Tips for Gifting a Car for the Holidays

gifting a car for the holidays

As the holiday season approaches, many people are buying gifts for everyone on their list. If one of your loved ones — like a teenage son or daughter— needs a car this year, consider these tips for gifting a car for the holidays.

Consider Taxes

Laws differ from state to state, but the gift of a car can sometimes trigger a federal gift tax. In 2016, the threshold for an individual was $14,000. However, couples can combine their thresholds for both giving and receiving.

Keep It a Surprise

If you are giving your family member a car, it might be difficult to keep it a surprise. Ask the dealership to have the car delivered late on Christmas Eve or enlist the help of a family member or friend to park the carat his or her house.

Make a Grand Presentation

We’ve all seen car commercials where someone gets a new car with a giant bow on top. You can make that a reality by purchasing a car bow online.

There is no better place to find the perfect gift this holiday season than Van Drunen Ford. Stop by and tell us who you’re shopping for, and we’ll do our best to fix you up with the right fit.

How to Prepare Your Car for Winter

The leaves are changing here in Illinois, which means that winter’s cold weather and icy road conditions are just around the corner. Be sure to prepare your car for winter this year with these easy steps.


Tire Pressure and Condition

Cold temperatures can cause tire pressure to fluctuate, and properly inflated tires are key to good efficiency and strong, safe traction. Check tire pressure regularly, and fill up when necessary. Take a good look at each of the tires: Check for low tread or damages like cracks, and replace the tires if needed.


Winter Wiper Fluid

Windshields quickly tend to get dirty in the winter, so it’s important to be able to clean your car’s windshield for clear visibility. Replace the current wiper fluid with winter wiper fluid, which is designed for below-freezing temperatures to prevent frost from forming on the windshield.


Winter Supply Box

There are some things you should always have in your car, like jumper cables and a tire-changing kit. The winter comes with its own set of unique conditions, so if you want to be prepared for an emergency this season, it’s best to put together a winter supply box. This should include items like extra warm clothes, blankets, snacks, a charged phone for emergency calls, an extra ice scraper, and a bag of sand or cat litter for traction in the snow.


No matter what conditions winter brings us in the upcoming season, know that Van Drunen Ford has you covered. If you need assistance preparing your vehicle for winter, please book a service appointment by calling 888-471-6324 and choosing option 1.

About Homewood, Illinois

Van Drunen Ford is happy to call Homewood, Illinois our home. In 2007, Forbes magazine rated our village one of the three “most livable” suburbs of Chicago, and we definitely agree. Here are three impressive things you might not have known about Homewood, Illinois.


Take the Amtrak Out of Town

A quaint, adventurous train ride to an exciting destination like New Orleans is available every day in Homewood. We have the fortune of living in a town with an Amtrak station. Our station is part of the City of New Orleans route, so every night at 8:54 p.m., you can catch a train heading to New Orleans with stops in Tennessee and Mississippi. You can also catch the same train up to Chicago in the morning.


Award-Winning School District

Homewood offers a lot of incentives for families looking for a neighborhood close to Chicago. One outstanding fact is that Homewood boasts an award-winning school district in addition to plenty of kids’ programs and community events all year long.


Home of the Most Richard Haas Murals

Richard Haas is known worldwide for his large-scale murals, and Homewood has the pleasure of showing off 15 of them. That’s more than any other city in the world. This map will help you find each one of these impressive murals in our city.


This is just a taste of the suburb we proudly serve here at Van Drunen Ford. With easy access to I-80 and I-294, you will find that there are plenty of adventures within your commute to experience day in and day out. Make sure you visit us if you need anything for your next road adventure in Homewood.

What to Bring With You When Buying a Car

What to Bring With You When Buying a CarAre you planning on buying a new Ford in the near future? You can streamline the entire process by having the necessary documents ready to go. Here’s what to bring with you when buying a car from Van Drunen Ford.

Proof of income

In order to buy a car, you need to prove you can afford to make the monthly payments. Proof of income can be as simple as a bank statement or paycheck stub. Either document will satisfy lenders.


Are you really you? A dealership will need to confirm so to let you leave the lot with your new Ford. If you drove to the dealership, odds are you already have a valid driver’s license that can serve as identification.


Before you leave our dealership, you’ll need to prove you have insurance on your new vehicle. It’s wise to make a phone call to your insurance company to set up the switch before purchasing the car. You don’t want your new car sitting on the lot for days while you wait for insurance coverage.


A driver’s license may include your address, but a dealership still needs proof of residence. This can be in the form of a utility bill, mortgage agreement, or another bill sent to your address.

The more prepared you are when you come to buy a car from Van Drunen Ford, the sooner you’ll be able to drive your new car home.

Why Service at a Dealership like Van Drunen Ford?

why Service at a Dealership

An independent garage can save you a little money, but it can’t offer you the peace of mind a dealership can. Although a little more expensive, dealerships bring more to the table than simple service. Check out these great benefits to servicing your car at a dealership.

Genuine Parts

Dealerships like Van Drunen Ford have a direct working relationship with the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM). As a result of this relationship, our service department has prime access to genuine OEM parts designed to fit and function perfectly in Ford vehicles. These parts are identical to the parts in your vehicle, rather than off-brand imitations.

Genuine parts are built to provide drivers with peace of mind. Each part features a manufacturer-backed warranty that covers the cost of replacement if the new part is defective. If the part does need to be replaced, there’s no extra labor cost.

Professional Technicians

A certified Ford dealership employs professional technicians trained to work specifically on Ford vehicles. They’re the experts in spotting and solving problems both big and small. Thanks to their knowledge and efficiency, they can save drivers time and money.

Service History

Each time a vehicle comes to a dealership service department, the technician adds an entry to the vehicle service history. An accurate service history proves the car was properly maintained and professionally repaired. It can even increase the resale value of the vehicle when it comes time to trade it in.

If your vehicle needs serviced, bring it to Van Drunen Ford. You can trust our technicians to do a stellar job.

Fall Things to Do in Illinois

fall things to do in Illinois

Illinois is a busy state and home to one of the country’s biggest cities, so there’s always something to do here, whether you’re looking for a weekend day trip or a long road trip in your Ford vehicle. Here are some fun fall things to do in Illinois this season.

2018 is Illinois’ bicentennial anniversary as a state, and farmers are celebrating in style, designing bicentennial mazes in their corn fields. Corn mazes are a tradition every year in Illinois, but this year is special. You can visit the Richardson Adventure Farm in Chicago, Abbey Farms in Aurora, Hardy’s Reindeer Ranch in Rantoul, and many more!

Another way to spend your fall in your Ford truck or car is to visit the many orchards and farms in Illinois. Apple-picking is a classic fall activity. No matter where you live in Illinois, there’s an orchard you can drive to for an afternoon trip. Illinois is home to all kinds of farms, from pumpkin patches to syrup farms to vineyards.

It wouldn’t be fall without Oktoberfest, and there are celebrations going on all over Illinois this autumn. We recommend road tripping up to Chicago for the Oktoberfest at Starved Rock State Park, the most popular state park in Illinois, with its waterfalls, naturally formed canyons, and beautiful foliage.

No matter which direction in Illinois you drive, you’re bound to find something fun to do and something beautiful to see. Take your trip in a car from Van Drunen Ford.

How to Get Your Ford Ready for Fall

Ford Service

With summer coming to an end, now is the perfect time to get your Ford ready for fall weather with excellent service from Van Drunen Ford and easy do-it-yourself maintenance tasks. Here are some of the most important tasks for transitioning from summer into cooler weather.


First, inspect the tires and check the air pressure. If the rubber is bulging or cracked, or the tread is worn, it’s time to replace them—and you’ll definitely want new tires before winter hits. Cold air can reduce air pressure, so add air to your tires as needed for better traction.


Next, check your lights. If any are burnt out, replace them—it’s going to start getting dark earlier, and you need working lights more than ever. You may also want to scrub the inside of the plastic covers if you notice the lights are foggy.


Replace the wiper blades. Wiper blades get worn out over the rainy spring and summer months, and going into inclement fall weather, you’ll want fresh ones. You should also turn on the heater and defrost to make sure they’re still working after you left them off for months.

Dealership Service

Head to Van Drunen Ford for oil changes, tire rotations, battery tests, fluid refills, and an inspection. All of these tasks are more important than ever during cold months, and you want a professional taking care of them.

Buying New vs. Used Cars

Why Buy New vs Used

Adding a new car to your life can be exciting, but one of the first choices you need to make is whether you want to buy something brand new or used. There are pros and cons on both sides of the new vs. used cars debate, so here are a few things to consider.


  • One of the biggest benefits to buying new is the obvious fact that it is new. You don’t have to worry about its previous owners or history.
  • Buying new also ensures you get to take full advantage of its warranty, meaning you can enjoy years of relatively hassle-free vehicle maintenance.
  • New cars will come with the latest technology features, helping your family stay connected on the go.
  • If safety is a top concern, you can get all of the best advanced safety features in a new car.


  • When it comes to buying a used car, there is no bigger benefit than the amount of money you will save. You get to skip out on the first few years of costly depreciation.
  • Because used cars cost less, you can potentially get a lot more car for your money. Take your compact car-sized new car budget and put it towards a well-equipped used midsize vehicle.
  • Overall vehicle durability is getting better each year, meaning used cars last a lot longer than they used to.

Whether you want a new or a used car, stop by Van Drunen Ford and we’ll help you find the right fit for you.

Why Buy New vs Used

About Van Drunen Ford

Van Drunen Ford

Welcome to Van Drunen Ford! Not only are we Chicagoland’s oldest Ford dealership, but we’re also Homewood’s oldest continuously operated family business. We were founded in 1930 by Morse Van Drunen, who opened the dealership’s first location on Dixie Highway in Homewood.

Even though times were tough in the early years due to the Great Depression, Morse persevered and was eventually able to establish the dealership as a successful business. Today, we’re still owned and operated by the Van Drunen family, with Morse’s grandchildren and great-grandchildren in charge at our current location on West 183rd Street.

Morse also established Van Drunen Ford as a pillar of the Homewood-Flossmoor community. Multiple generations of Chicagoland drivers have purchased cars from Van Drunen Ford thanks to the personal and community connections we’ve nurtured here over the years. We continue to honor that legacy today with our support of Homewood Little League and the Homewood-Flossmoor Soccer Club.

At Van Drunen Ford, we stock a diverse lineup of Ford cars, trucks, and SUVs. Whether you’re looking to buy, finance, or service a vehicle here, we pride ourselves on doing today exactly what Morse did all those years ago: run a trustworthy business that offers an inviting atmosphere, outstanding customer service, and high-quality new and used cars. Visit us to see for yourself.

Van Drunen Ford