Tag Archives: convex driver’s side mirrors

Convex Driver’s Side Mirrors…Why don’t you see them in DFW?

So why don’t you see driver’s side convex mirrors on Dallas Fort Worth cars or anywhere else in the US? Quite frankly, they are illegal here. Why?  Anyone who has driven a car in Europe has seen that their driver’s side mirror are convex. In contrast to the United States, where vehicles must have flat (or planar) outside mirrors on the driver’s side, European cars can have convex, wide-angle mirrors on both sides of their vehicles.

What’s the big deal? With two convex mirrors, blind spots are virtually eliminated, they can virtually eliminate the need to twist one’s head toward the left when looking to turn left or changing lanes to pass.

Apparently, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration would consider permitting convex driver’s-side mirrors on vehicles, the change might finally be on the horizon. Both General Motors and Mercedes-Benz, have argued that drivers with convex mirrors on both sides will have a much wider field of view. The companies support the idea that the United States simply adopt the European rules for driver’s-side mirrors.

This endorsement of convex mirrors comes on the heels of a tentative proposition that would require all future United States bound vehicles have rear cameras. This is an added cost that will be passed on the consumer. With both driver’s side and passenger’s side mirrors convex, US bound vehicles can forgo the costly addition of rear cameras.

At the present time in the United States, drivers and automakers can install convex

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Additional installation of a convex mirror exposes blind spots flat mirrors cannot capture

mirrors as long as the mirrors also have the required flat portion, as some manufacturers, including Ford, have done.

According to the New York Times:

“The agency intends to re-evaluate existing side-mirror requirements (FMVSS No.111) to determine whether convex mirrors should be harmonized with European requirements,” said Karen Aldana, an N.H.T.S.A. spokeswoman.

If you are looking for a broader field of view in your driver’s side rear view mirror, consider adding a convex mirror to your existing flat mirror. I’m sure most auto parts stores in Dallas and Fort Worth have them. If you are having problems getting the right one for your Buick or GMC car or truck then just swing by Freeman Grapevine so you can stop driving blind.

Freeman Grapevine: DFW Winter Driving tips

So far, this winter has been fairly moderate, but it’s still just the beginning and here in Texas, particularly Dallas and Fort Worth, cars fall easy prey to our sudden cold snaps. So, in keeping with the Boy Scouts motto, “Always Be Prepared” here’s just a little refresher on driving in foul Winter weather.

For those not used to navigating ice and snow covered roads, which is ALL of us, this can be, with little, doubt the most dangerous driving time of the year. Even those of you that have been raised in the Northern and Midwest states could take a few minutes and reflect upon some good safety tips and make sure we keep our precious cargo safe.

Getting Winter Ready

  1. Check you fluids — It is very important to have a well supplied anti-freeeze  resorvoir in cold weather. Wiper fluid is also often consumed in large quantities, and don’t just use water or it will freeze on you.
  2. Tires and Brakes – A good set of well tread tires can be the difference of being in the ditch or safely on the asphalt. Pressure must be kept up as well, since cold weather promotes flatter tires. Anti-lock brakes are the best for winter, but you should always have good brake pads for icy stops.
  3. Wipers- Nothing beats a set of maintained wipers in a blizzard or sleet storm. Rain-X is also a valid choice for extreme climate conditions.
  4. Battery and Engine — Good clean battery posts and a good charged battery are a must when starting in cold weather. Engine tune-ups and regular oil changes also are a must for reliable winter travel.

But that’s not all folks, there are a few other key points to remember.

  • Stay home if you can, as there is no substitution for safety
  • Know your route — research road closures and delays
  • Have plenty of fuel — this will provide much needed warmth
  • Have a well stocked safety kit — flashlights, jumper cables, water, etc
  • Cell phone – communications are important when stranded
  • Drive safely — keep plenty of space between you and cars or obstacles

You can stay safe during these winter months! See Freeman Grapevine with questions and feel free to share your driving experiences.