Combating Highway Hypnosis

Source: www.wisegeek.com

Source: www.wisegeek.com

The idea of traveling long distances is a good one. Packing up your suitcase, getting your dogs in the car, then hitting the road. Driving across the state, or even across the country is one of America’s past-times. But there’s one thing that will end your vacation quickly: highway hypnosis. After an extended period of time out on the road, seeing the cars drive by, and staring at the road in front of you, even the most experienced drivers tend to get dreary and sleepy. Highway hypnosis is dangerous because you could very easily drift into another lane, or off the road completely, and we don’t want to think about what happens then. Here are a few ways to combat that sleepy feeling.

1. Sing Along With The Radio

If you find yourself getting dreary, crank up the radio and belt out your best rendition of “Don’t Stop Believing“. It puts your mind to work in areas other than driving. You won’t be taking your eyes off the road, but your brain will be jolted back to life and you’ll be more alert.

2. Take A Break

It’s good to get out of the car and walk around for a bit. Maybe you could make a phone call and walk around a store for a few minutes, just to get your blood flowing. If you’re running low on gas, it’s time to fill up and take a break.

3. Avoid Heavy Meals

There’s a reason everyone takes a nap on Thanksgiving. It’s because we eat so much. Our bodies are using energy to digest the massive amounts of food we just put into our bodies. In turn, that makes us tired and sleepy. If you’re heading out for an extended trip, avoid the heavy meals that make us want to pull over and take a nap.

4. Roll the Windows Down

If the weather’s nice enough, you can always roll your windows down and give your senses something more to focus on. The smell of the outside, and the wind rushing in will give you a lift and you’ll be more awake.

Next time you’re traveling, be sure to remember these tips.

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Tailgating is a Dangerous Hobby

We’ve all seen them. We look in the mirror and we see a car cruising a mere 6 feet away safedrivingspacefrom your bumper. Tailgaters. The aggressive drivers who want to go faster than you and want you to be out of their way. Truth be told: tailgating is one of the most dangerous habits that drivers have. Just think about the last time you were out on the road, I can almost bet that you were driving to close to the person in front of you. After years of driving, we tend to forget what we were taught in Driver’s Ed.

Tailgating is dangerous at any speed, from a 20 mph school zone to a 85 mpg highway. A sudden stop, or even just a slight deceleration could end up being a disaster. If you find yourself in an accident with you being the aggressor, you will stand to lose more than a few dollars. It will cost you money to repair your car, pay your fines and likely have a hard time finding a new insurance company.

We recommend keeping a 1.5 – 2 car distance between yourself and the car in front of you for every 10 mph you are traveling. For instance. If you are going 60 mph on the highway, then you want, at least 9 car lengths between you. Sure, there will be some hiccups along the way (merging traffic, drivers who cut you off, etc..), but that shouldn’t stop you from slowing down and letting the other drivers get far enough ahead of you so if they realize they are going too fast and hit the brakes, even for an instant, you won’t slam into their bumpers.

Here’s a fun fact for you! Not tailgating will actually help your car’s fuel mileage. If you aren’t flooring the accelerator and keeping up with the speed fluctuations the car in front of you has, your engine will maintain a steady pace and use fuel accordingly.

I realize that it may be hard to do with our congestion here in Dallas-Fort Worth, but rest assured, when you remember to keep your distance from the cars in front of you, you’ll have less of a chance of causing a minor (or major!) accident.

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Why Running Your Car On Empty Is Bad

Source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Washington,_D.C._Empty_gas_tanks8c36382v.jpg

Source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Washington,_D.C._Empty_gas_tanks8c36382v.jpg

Who isn’t tired of the fluctuating and ever increasing gas prices? It still hurts the wallet every time I have to fill up. And to avoid that sting, some people are driving their vehicles until they have used every last drop in the gas tank, literally. Which means not only could they end up on the side of the road because they ran out of gas, but running on empty can cause costly damage to your vehicle. We’ve seen it first hand here at Freeman Grapevine.

Most people on the road don’t realize that if you are running on empty, you may be putting your vehicle at risk by causing damage to the fuel pump. The electric fuel-pump motor uses the gasoline as a coolant, so when you are low the pump may suck in air which creates heat and that is not a good thing. Replacing the fuel pump will cost a couple hundred dollars to fix which leaves you in a position of shelling out even more money!

Besides costly fuel pump damage, running on a low tank of gas could possibly leave you stranded on the side of a road or could possible be the cause of an accident if your vehicle suddenly stops running. Being stranded puts both you and your vehicle at risk. Hopefully a friend can help out by bringing you some gas, but you will need to be prepared to take some heat for letting your car run out of gas in the first place!

Thankfully, you can prevent these situations by following the tips below:

  • Fill up once your tank reaches 1/4 full.
  • Before driving on a long trip, fill up. You never know what the traffic might bring that day and you may end up with a longer trip than planned.
  • If you do get low enough on fuel for your car to ding or warn you, fill up as soon as possible.  Don’t hope that you can get just a little bit further as you never can be sure how far you can get.
  • Find the cheapest gas near your house instead of driving to the other side of town. There are some apps out there that can help find the cheapest gas.

Don’t take your chances by running your vehicle on empty. Even though you may think you are stretching your dollar further, you will run the risk of potentially having costly as well as dangerous situations running on a near empty gas tank. One way to make sure you are getting the best MPGs possible is to have your tires properly inflated and your vehicle properly maintained. You can always bring your vehicle by Freeman Grapevine and we can help you out!

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When Is It The Right Time For A New Car

dallas Buick Dealer, Dallas GMC Dealer, dallas GMC Truck, dallas new car, dallas Used Car, dallas Used Truck, dfw driving, financing, GMC Dealer, GMC TruckLike most, you may have a special relationship with your car. I know I do. I love my truck! It only stands to reason that when the time for a change comes it may become difficult when it’s time to part with it. Heck, you may even be in denial that it is even time to part with it.  If you’re on the fence on whether or not you should start to consider a new car or not, take the quick quiz below by answer yes or no to each question below to see if you should be in the market for a new car or if the one you’re currently driving is just fine:

  1. Is it hard to find parts for your car when repairs are needed? Spending hours on the phone or the Internet tracking down a part to your car is big waste of time, but necessary if you need to drive.  If you take your car to your trusted mechanic and even they are having a hard time finding parts then time may up on your car.
  2. Do you find yourself putting more money into your car than your car is even worth?  Sure, in your mind your car may be a classic, but if your car is costing you more than what’s it worth it’s time to revisit basic accounting before you get yourself further in the red.
  3. Do you trust your vehicle? If you get into your car and are just not sure if it will get you to the place you need to be without any problems, you need one that you do trust. No one likes being broken down in the road. It’s dangerous, a waste of time and just frustrating.
  4. Is your car safe? If you were to get into an accident do you think your vehicle could protect you with airbags, anti-lock brakes, stability control which are all pretty much standard on today’s cars.
  5. Will your vehicle pass the emissions test? Cars that close to or older than 15 years old have less of chance passing emissions testing. And just about every state has some sort of emissions testing that their vehicle needs to pass in order for it to be legally on the road.

In my opinion, if you answered “yes” to even one question, then I would highly suggest putting a new car purchase in the budget. Of course you don’t have to buy brand new, a used car is new car to the new owner.  The bottom-line is that you need to be safe in your car and be able to trust that it can get you from point A to point B without any problems. And if you do have problems you don’t want to be sinking a lot of cash into something that doesn’t give a return, especially if you’re going to be running into more and more problems.

Come by Freeman Grapevine today, we’d love to help determine if your current car is just getting to old. And if so, we have a lot of new and used cars for you to take a look at.

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Are You Brand Loyal To Your Car

car brand loyalty, Buick Dealer, dallas Buick Dealer, Dallas GMC Dealer, dallas GMC Truck, dallas new car, dallas Used Car, dallas Used Truck, financing, GMC Dealer, GMC Truck,

I bought a new shirt the other day and I realized that I keep shopping for the same brands and the same style that I always buy. Do I have a brand loyalty? Am I aligning myself group by wearing a certain brand? What about new cars in Dallas and Fort Worth? Are people brand loyal when it comes to new cars?

“Sure”, you might say, “…but only with trucks and maybe sports cars…Mini-vans and sedans? Probably not.” Is that really true though? I did some research and found out that isn’t entirely true. In fact, 3 out of 4 new car buyers ARE brand loyal…even  to mini-vans and sedans.

Here’s the rub. According to a Consumer Reports survey I read, it says that 73%of new car buyers are somewhat likely, or very likely to buy from the same brand again. However, it apparently depends a lot on age and gender:

CR says 54% of women are very likely to stay brand loyal, while just 43% of men are. And half of older drivers say they plan to buy a vehicle of the same brand next time, vs. 41% of younger crowd.

OK, so what is changing the minds of the other 27%? Apparently, top three reasons people say they’d switch to a different brand are higher quality, better fuel economy and a lower price.

So, just over a quarter of new car buyers see the automobile as a simple mode of transportation.

Just 27%, that seems awfully low…except when you are dealing with brand loyalty. We’ve aligned ourselves in such a way with brands that people can, quite literally, get to know a little something about your personality from a mile away simply by the shape of the car you drive. That’s right…the shape. Think about it for a second and if you don’t already know this, you’ll figure it out. Buick, GMC, BMW, Mercedes, Lexus all have their signature silhouettes.

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Are You Upside Down On Your Car

Source: www.deceptology.com

Source: www.deceptology.com

At Freeman Grapevine, we get asked all of the time by new car buyers: “What does it mean to be “upside down” on your new car?” Well, simple put, you owe more than the car is worth.

The first step to getting out of this crazy situation is to understand that you are not alone. Roughly 30% of people in the United States are in similar situations, and what’s more is that many of these people are in this situation from the get go. That’s right…almost the moment they drive off of the lot. Sometime you gotta’ do what you gotta’ do when you need a new car.

Now that you know you are not alone, the next step is to take stock of what your current options are.

One of the more common strategies people use to get out of such situations is to try and sell the car. Unfortunately, unless you are able to sell the car for what you owe, you are still responsible to pay the loan in full, regardless of who actually owns the car. Another common strategy is to trade in the car that is upside down for a new vehicle. While this may get you out from under one inverted car loan, it is going to put you right back under another one.

This is great advice:

The best thing you can do is finish paying that car off and then sell it or use it as a trade. If you are upside down, you are probably going to want some guidance as to how you can get back on your feet. That’s where Freeman Grapevine can help.

Does anyone have a suggestion or service they can recommend?

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How Potholes Can Damage Your Car

Hey, it happens even to the best of us here at Freeman Grapevine. You’re driving along, focusing on the road ahead, and you might not even notice the huge hole in the road…until you drive over it.

Bam, you just hit a pothole. It might have sloshed your coffee, or made your CD player skip. You quietly curse the pothole and you might even shake an angry fist in the rear view mirror, but then you just go about your day. What you might not know is, driving over potholes can cause serious damage to your car.

First off, what exactly is a pothole? Well, as roadways freeze and thaw, some of the water erodes the dirt beneath the surface of the road. Then the asphalt will start to crack and chip away. This leads to small holes in the road, and they will eventually turn into potholes.

How can potholes affect you? Well, you could notice immediate damage via a flat tire or long-term damage could start to affect your alignment and steering. Pothole damage accounts for about 500,000 insurance claims every year, so you should look for any signs of damage as soon as possible.

Source: www.engadget.com

Source: www.engadget.com

 

If you have aluminum rims, they might become bent or warped if you hit too many potholes, and they just can’t withstand the impact that older, steel rims can. If you hit a deep pothole, it could chip away some of the rust proofing on the undercarriage of you car, and you will want to get that repaired as quickly as possible.

The biggest problem will have an effect on your steering and shocks. If you notice that your car starts to pull in one direction or the other when you let go of the steering wheel, your alignment is probably off. If you notice that your drive is becoming a little rougher and you can feel every little bump in the road, those potholes might have messed up your shock springs.

Let me know if you have any funny or nightmarish pothole stories, and I might include them in a future blog post! Of course, if that pothole has left you with any of the issues I mentioned above, then feel free to bring it into Freeman Grapevine so we can take a look.

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Staying Out Of A Semi’s Blindspot

Source: www.drive-safely.net

If you’ve ever driven, or even ridden in a car in Dallas or Fort Worth, then there is no doubt you’ve seen the large, commercial trucks that roam our already over crowded highways and byways. Especially right out here in front of Freeman Grapevine on 121 and 114, in fact, you literally see them everywhere, transporting goods to stores and construction sites, but their drivers may not be able to see you.

Now, you get used to dealing with big rigs on the road. The are imposing, they are loud and they always seem to find a way to pin you between the barrier wall and their cargo trailer. I haven’t even mentioned the tsunami that incurs when they hit patch of standing water on the highway. A wall of water is the best way I can describe it. For a seasoned driver, this is tolerable, but for a new driver it’s terrifying.

So, when I found an article about the Street Survival School held at the Consumer Reports Auto Test Center, I was eager to find out what skills they were teaching our young drivers. The idea was to set up a demonstration to show teen drivers the limitations with truck drivers’ visibility and teach the young motorists how to safely maneuver around big vehicles. Something we all could have probably benefited from as young drivers.

During this class session, they parked one of their track-maintenance dump trucks, a 10-wheeled monster, in the parking lot, with shiny new cars arrayed around it as if on a freeway. The kids got to climb in the cab to check which cars they could see. The nearest car behind, barely visible by bobbing your head among the various mirrors, was parked about 50 feet behind the dump truck. This gave the young drivers a real feel for the visibility limitations of commercial truck drivers, and it will hopefully encourage them to think about how they position themselves in traffic.

Seeing what it is like for a truck driver provided valuable insight for these kids, no doubt. The adage about walking a mile in someone else’s shoes really goes a long way when seen from the driver’s seat of a rig. Watch the video below and see for yourself. It might just make you a safer driver, as well.

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Can Your Wallet Afford A Car Accident

Buick Dallas, GMC Dallas, Texas Buick, Texas GMC, Texas GMC Dealer, Used Car Dealers Dallas, Used Cars Dallas, used cars fort worth

Have you been in an accident in your new car recently, are you suffering pain as a result of your car accident and it wasn’t your fault? Does this sound like an advertisement for an ambulance chasing lawyer? Well, regardless if it does or not, the fact of the matter you may have a good compensation claim against the other party, you may not.

Now, I hope you are never in a car accident accident and if you were I really hope that you don’t have to go through the stressful experience of a lawsuit of some kind. However, this is real life and things happen…here’s what to do if they do.

Many compensation personal injury solicitors now work on a No Win No Fee basis meaning you don’t need to pay them a penny for their services. If you win your case you will not have to pay their legal costs and the fees and cost for helped you will be collected from the other party. If you lose your case , it is very likely to get nothing, that’s why they mostly take cases on they believe will win.

In regards to insurance, any medical costs from the hospital, health care and also any medicine you’ve had to purchase can probably be claimed. If any other costs have arose from this car accident then make it clear when you speak to your lawyer, they will need to know the full facts of the accident as well as the pain and costs you have or are suffering from.

Remember, every car accident compensation claim is completely different from any other. It depends on the injuries that were caused, any costs or medical treatment, time off work needed and much more. As well as the time it took them to close the case. It could take a few months or a couple of years, so just keep this in mind when choosing your compensation claim lawyer, get a good one.

Some good questions to ask are :

• Will I get the ‘whole’ of my compensation? If yes… continue
• Will I need to pay a fee? If no… continue
• Do you recover costs from the other side (i.e. people at fault)? If yes… continue
• Would I need to pay anyone any money once my claim is settled? If no… proceed.

Again,  Freeman Grapevine hopes you never have to experience any of the above. However, if you do, know that you have recourse to file claim against the offending party. Be wise in your choice of lawyer, he should have your best interest in mind…not his.

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What’s One Of The Most Expensive Windows In Your Car

m41vFjTS9qp6g74jbwvcj3AOne would think that some of the smaller components, such as those little vent windows wouldn’t cost too much to replace…that is until you’ve actually broken one. Of course, everyone knows that there are many components of automotive glass on the car that will largely differ in cost. Lots of individuals don’t understand how much the tiny vent window on a new or used car in Dallas may cost to fix.

Here’s a scenario you may have experienced:

You’re running behind for the most important meeting of your life and after switching off your car, you grab the keys and put them on the passenger seat while you collect your notes. After this you hop out of the vehicle and click the lock button on the door prior to shutting it. As you are actually letting go of the door, you remember your keys sitting in the front…but it’s too late. The door slams and is now locked…with your keys inside. Now what? Call a locksmith? Nope, there’s no time. So you choose to break the small vent glass and take care of the cost later…after all, how much can that actually cost?

So your meeting is over and you now need to contact and arrange an replacement for that small vent window you decided was your key back into your car. Of course, after talking with the autoglass center, you find out that the little vent window you broke is one of the priciest parts of glass on your automobile. “D’OH”!

What people don’t understand is that the vent window might be small compared to the other glass on the car but it is not often mass produced like the windshield or door window. Quite often, the vent window will need to be special ordered which means the manufacturer will likely need to commit additional time to custom cut this piece of glass. The vent window normally consist of lots of curves which will also increase the time it will take to custom cut the window.

Therefore should you find yourself in a bind and feel you must break a window on your automobile then you should bust the door window rather than that small vent window. The vent window can ultimately cost you 2 or 3 times what it would cost to replace the door window. Sad but true.

Finding it tough to search for a windshield repair service center nearby? Hope is not dimmed yet, whether you are in Fort Worth, or Dallas come to your Texas GMC dealer with all your new and used car needs and let us help you today….and that includes choosing another way to retrieve your keys without breaking the bank.

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