Category Archives: Uncategorized

Tempted by budget tires? Watch this video first

You know in your heart you should do your research and buy quality, highly rated tires, right? You know that. And yet, good tires are astonishingly expensive, and the screaming deals offered by no-name brands and tire discounters can be tempting. Do you really get what you pay for? Well, all-round tire fanatic Jonathan Benson from UK-based Tyre Reviews tackled the question. (You know Jonathan from his video series, including one we highlighted back in June that had some interesting insights about wheel sizes and tire sidewall height.)

This time around, he’s testing costly name-brand tires against budget tires, comparing a set of Continental Sport Contact 6s against what he calls a “good for the budget” set called a Rotalla RU01 S-Pace. (Rotalla also markets a tire called the Unicorn. We assume it is not imbued with magical powers.)

Benson finds drifting to be much tougher with the budget tires — easier to break loose, much harder to control. “They’re not as fun, they’re not as fast, they’re not as consistent,” and he mentions the small matter of feeling like he’s “on the edge of questionable death.”

Then there’s the braking comparison. We won’t all go drifting, but at some time or another we will all need every blessed inch of braking distance we can get. The test results have to be seen. But that poor foam dude never had a chance.

There’s also a comparison of dry handling, where Benson finds some kind things to say about the Rotallas, though a lack of controllability yields slightly slower lap times.

He does conclude that, objectively, the two sets of tires are less different than he would have thought, with test data showing a performance gap of perhaps 5 percent. But he rates the subjective gap in handling predictability at 50 percent.

The price difference between these tires? About 250 pounds, or $325. That’s real money — but the stakes are really high.

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Dallas Fort Worth Buick GMC: Keeping Your Car Cool In The Texas Heat

texas heat, keeping car cool, cool car summer, dallas forth worth buick gmc, freeman grapevine

Oh man, we already know this Summer is a hot one. With such a mild Winter, I’m sure we are in for a long stretch of triple digit weather. Such heat can wreak havoc on both your car’s interior and exterior not to mention YOU! So, what are the best ways of  not only keeping your car cool, but yourself as well? Lucky for you, there are simple things that you can do to help beat the heat.

In fact, Consumer Reports accumulated easy steps you can take to lower your car’s heat.

  1. Park in the shade. Yes, you risk tree pollen or even bird droppings on your car, but it will be much cooler. If there is no shade, then park with the sun beating down into the rear window rather than the front to avoid the steering wheel and front seats from getting hot.
  2. Use a sunshade. These windshield covers keep harmful rays out of your vehicle and while it will still be warm inside they do help keep the temperature down. In addition, sunshades will allow the car to cool faster reducing the time you need to use the air conditioning on high, which can save you some money in gas.
  3. Deploy window shades. Many baby stores sell these window shades that can be put up or down or taken off an on to keep the sun’s rays from beating down on the car seat and when your child is occupying the seat while driving. Some minivans and luxury cars have retractable shades for the second seating row.
  4. Keep leather cool. Leather seats and steering wheels can get so hot they can cause burns. To avoid a hot seat, you can sit on a towel or use a cloth seat cover for the summer months.
  5. Watch the buckles. Metal seat belt buckles can also get extremely hot in the sun. Use caution when buckling and try to avoid children handling the metal part of the buckles. Also, don’t be tempted to loosen car seat straps in the summer heat. Children need to be buckled up securely at all times to remain safe.
  6. Keep hydrated. Bring bottles of water and ice to help you hydrate on these hot days. Having an extra filled water bottle in the car can be a valued addition to an emergency kit, in case of a breakdown or other unforeseen complication.
  7. Don’t leave items in the car. We all know not to keep perishables in the car, but the sun can also affect CDs, DVDs, electronic devices, and toys. Put the items in the trunk or better yet, take them out if you won’t be using them regularly.

Simply opening your doors for a few minutes will dissipate the heat enough for you to stand getting in and cranking your A/C. Of course this is Texas, and we know what to expect from our summers.

Now the big question is: does your A/C cool your car enough? If you think you may need to have your A/C serviced on your Dallas Fort Worth Buick or GMC, now is the time do do it. Don’t wait until Summer is in full swing to have it looked at. Give Freeman Grapevine a call.


Freeman Grapevine: No-Brainer Insurance

I’m always shocked when I hear about drivers who have no insurance. Let’s face it, if you drive you need insurance. There are no “if, and’s or but’s”At some point in your driving career, you are going to need it for a fender bender, cracked windshield or total car loss.

People spend a lot on new cars and they require proper care, maintenance and PROTECTION. Here is where new car insurance comes into play. New car insurance helps safeguard  you against costly vehicle repairs, most of which you probably never saw coming in the first place.

Insurance is a no-brainer. Get it. Stay Protected…besides, it’s the Law. Swing by Freeman Grapevine and we can talk about how insurance can protect your Buick or GMC.



How to get Rid of that Stinky Car Smell

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There’s a reason they call it the ‘new car’ smell. Once it’s not new anymore, your car begins to emit a distinctive smell that mostly the contents of the car. Some cars fare better than others, depending on their owner’s cleaning habits. If you don’t take the time to clean out your car, yes, it will probably be an olfactory nightmare. Here are few tips to keep your car smelling just as good as it did the day it came off the lot.

Give it a good clean

I can’t stress this enough. Clean out your car! If you’re a smoker and you use the ashtray, there’s a high probability that it’s causing your passengers to hold their noses when they ride with you. Clean every part of the car. The seats that house all of the crumbs from you eating while driving, the floor mats that absorb whatever it is you stepped in, the steering wheel that gets covered in sweaty palms, all of it needs a good vacuuming or spray of cleaning solution. Check under the seats. I, personally, always find French fries under my seats and there’s really no telling how long they’ve been there.

Invest in a good smell neutralizer

Those trees you see hanging from the mirrors? The clip-on fragrances that you can put right on the air conditioner’s vent? Those just cover up the problem. For about $10 you can get a bag of odor absorbing materials that suck up whatever the smell is, be it cigarette smoke, mildew or month old French fries. I keep one under my seat at all times and I have yet to smell anything that makes me pinch my nose.

Check your in-cabin air conditioning filter

Those things are notorious for housing some of the worst smells of all mankind. If it’s been a few years since you’ve had it checked, bring it in to us and let us scope it out and see what’s causing that awful smell in your car.

What do you do to get rid of bad odors in your car?



10 Most Stolen Vehicles In the United States

Although car thefts have seemingly gone down in recent years, the fact of the matter is that they are in a flux point in part due to modern security systems. Modern vehicles have seen an increase in the quality of security that is provided for them. Namely the keys themselves now have a chip in the key itself with a code that tells the car, “Yes. I am the correct key for this vehicle.” Sounds pretty fool-proof huh? well car thieves are now starting to find ways around this added precaution, which sometime requires the participation of a third party at a locksmith, or unsecured dealership. However, since the thieves tactics have gotten a little more complicated, the model years of the cars being stolen have been surprising older.

So, what do auto thieves like to steal? It seems the older the better. The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) has released Hot Wheels, its list of the 10 most-stolen vehicles in the United States

I can only imagine that having your car stolen is an awful feeling. If you saw a car you own on the list in the video, just take extra precautions when parking it. Don’t leave anything of value in your car. Remember, older vehicles are the ones being stolen at the moment, so we ask that you be aware and lock your vehicle, always…Hey, maybe it’s time to break out The Club.

Do You Know How Your Engine Works?

Freeman Grapevine loves cars. Just like all of you, when we leave here we drive home and experience the same things your do. Sometimes it’s frustration from traffic, others it’s an exhilarating rush when we put the pedal to the metal to overtake a slower vehicle, but how does all of that work?

Most people only seem to know the essentials of their engines: it needs gas and oil changes. What else is gong on in there? How does it work? How is power generated. Well, here’s a good video. Your engine: 101.

Pretty cool, huh? If you think you are having any engine issues, feel free to swing into the service department at Freeman Grapevine.

Do Road Side Information Signs Really Help Find The Missing?

I recently saw a sign on 360 that said, “Missing Elderly, White GMC truck, License BS5 FTGX”. I instantly started scanning the cars around me simply out of curiosity. Then I thought to myself, “I wonder if this type of information on an electronic road sign really works”? I guess it does to an extent because it prompted me to look at the cars in my vicinity. However, 5 minutes down the road it was getting harder to remember what I read. Had I continued further down the road, I probably would have encountered another sign, and would probably have done the same simple search of my surroundings.

I guess I’m answering my question here. Do road side signs work? From my perspective, the answer is “Yes, they do work” to the extent of making drivers survey their immediate surroundings. Subsequently and hopefully, every driver in front and behind me did the same thing.

Here in the Dallas Fort Worth area, we have electronic roadside signs on almost every highway and loop and my question is, “Do they work in regards to finding missing persons”?

  • Do you do notice the signs?
  • Did you scan the area looking for the vehicle mentioned?
  • Was that person found as a result of an attentive driver?

I’m curious to know if other driver’s are as attentive as I apparently am in regards to noticing roadside information. I’m also really curious if anyone has been found as a direct result of a electronic roadside sign.

I can say without a doubt that me and everyone else at Freeman Grapevine would like to see more information sign systems in place in the future. The more signs that are up just means that many more drivers will notice them…or will they? Leave me a comment below and tell me what you think.

Car Accidents Involving Animals Are a Real Issue

This happens more often than you think.

If you live in the DFW area, specifically in Grapevine, Southlake and Colleyville areas you may already know that we have a rampant feral hog epidemic. Now most of you may not have seen the hogs, but you can tell where they’ve been. Soil overturned, golf course fairways and greens destroyed and the increasingly dangerous interaction with motorists. Hogs move fast and seemingly dart from no where into on coming traffic. Some weighing in at almost 300lbs can cause some very serious damage to your vehicle.

Unfortunately, there really isn’t anything you can do other than hit the poor thing. Often, a correction made behind the wheel of your new or used Buick, or GMC can, and most often results in an accident of a different nature. You hit another car, or an inanimate object like an electric pole or fence. Unfortunately, you are still responsible for any monetary damage you may have caused to any vehicle or highway/road objects such as signs, foliage, and other structures.

Watch the video below. It’s from Punta Gorda, FL, but it could have easily been on any road in our area.

Keep your eyes peeled, wear your seat belt and try not to swerve if the animal is in your path. Chances are you are just going to complicate matters even worse. As bad as it sounds, you my be better off hitting the animal as to avoid losing total control of your vehicle trying to avoid it.

Feral Hogs and deer are every where out here. Don’t let anyone tell you different. They will venture into populate areas and they will encounter a vehicle from time to time. If you’ve had your run in with a wild animal lately, What did you do? What type of damage did it do to your vehicle? If you have any questions about needing some body work done due to an animal strike, please call Freeman Grapevine. We live here, we’ve seen the damage these things can do.

The Infant Seat and its proper installation

I’m at that age now where most of my friends that are going to have children have had their first, and some their second. I’ve seen how being a parent is an enormous responsibility, especially in one place in particular, their new Buick, or GMC. I’ll go further and relegate this post to focus on the infant seat. That’s going to be the first time you’ve ever installed a car seat of any kind, I suspect.

Now, I can give you all sorts of statistics about the mortality rate of children who are not properly secured in their car seats.  Instead though, I think I’ll just make this a “How To…” post and focus on saving your child’s life rather than use fear to help you realize the importance of securing your child in your car properly. After all, the best way is to learn by example. Remember, most accidents happen within 5 miles of your house, so buckle them up EVERY time they are in the car. Check twice before starting your car…your infant isn’t going to tell you he didn’t think the buckle latched properly.

Watch the video below, it contained a surprising installation technique that I didn’t think about.

If you have any questions, or want step by step installation instruction of your infant seat, Freeman Grapevine Service would be happy to walk you though it.

How Long Does Your New Car Honeymoon Last?

This Dallas GMC Dealer never really thought about this until a recent survey I saw. Apparently the “honeymoon period” for a man and his car is four months, compared to 14 months for women. Most men consider the honeymoon over when they start parking their car around other cars, women when they let their spouses drive.

The survey below was completed by LeaseTrader and is the result of speaking with 2,500 drivers about when their car goes from “Hey everybody, check out my new car!”, to “Man, I really want a new car.” Of course, there are those flashes when you remember what it was like when it was brand new…but when you have your eye on a new car, those flashes become increasingly more rare.

Here’s the full list of what men and women consider to mark the end of the honeymoon period:

Parks around other cars (33%)
Starts transporting sports equipment (22%)
Less frequent car cleaning (17%)
High-payment starts to bother them (12%)
Stops using gas mileage button (7%)
No more fights over who drives during long trips (3%)
Other (6%)


Lets spouse finally drive car (39%)
Starts car-pooling other kids (24%)
Started eating in car (12%)
Puts makeup on while driving (9%)
Leaves clothes in car (6%)
Starts smoking in car (2%)
Other (8%)

Tell Freeman Grapevine who you think loves their cars more, Men or Women?