Category Archives: Driving Tips

This Spring Season, Don’t Forget These Flood Driving Safety Tips

Flood Driving Safety Tips
Flood Safety Tips

The snow may be gone, but now that spring has arrived, a new road hazard has taken its place: flash floods.

Though you may aim to begin your trips when the skies are clear, you just never know when the rain will begin. In the event of a flash flood, try to remember these flood driving safety tips:

  • Slow down as soon as the rain begins, because this time period is when hydroplaning is most likely to occur.
  • Never attempt to drive through a sitting body of water; just 12 inches of water can cause your vehicle to float.
  • Keep your eyes peeled for floating debris, and avoid areas with downed power lines entirely.
  • If your car does become stuck, as frustrating as it may be – you need to abandon the vehicle and seek shelter. You are more important than your car!

For more safety or car tips, visit us anytime at Ewing Buick GMC in Plano, TX

Automotive New Year’s Resolutions to Make

New Year’s Resolutions
Push Button Start the New Year Right

2016 is here! A new year means new resolutions to make. This year, consider making a change for the better in regards to your vehicle. Here are a few automotive New Year’s Resolutions to make!

Get Your Oil Changed on Time. It’s easy to get caught up in the busy routine of life and forget about changing your vehicle’s oil. However, this is a crucial component of automotive care. Be sure to change your oil on time this year!

Clean the Junk Out of Your Trunk. Are there plenty of items in the back of your car that need to be returned to the store after the holidays? Get that done now! Not only does it take up precious cargo room, it also decreases the efficiency of your vehicle.

Promise not to Text While Driving. We cannot stress this one enough! Texting while driving not only puts you in danger, but those around you as well. No matter how skilled you think you are at multitasking, just say no to texting while driving.

Good luck with your automotive upgrades and resolutions, and have a Happy New Year from Ewing Buick GMC in Dallas, TX.

What You Need in Your Car’s (Not So) Winter Emergency Kit

winter emergency kit
Winter Is Coming

We don’t get a lot of wild winter weather here in Plano, TX, but we love to be prepared. So, whether or not you intend to traverse up north to the thick snows and ice, we’ve whipped up a quick list of items for your very own winter emergency kit – because there’s no reason not to have one in your vehicle.

  • Blankets. Temperatures are nothing if not erratic in the wintertime, especially after sundown. Don’t risk hours in the cold for yourself or for your family – have one or two blankets handy.
  • A shovel. Make sure you have a shovel, whether it’s one of those smaller collapsible ones or a big ol’ snow shovel. Even if you’ll never need to dig yourself out of 3 feet of snow (which, really, how can you be sure?), a shovel is a good idea to have available.
  • Pack a first aid kit. Outfit it with bandages, antiseptic, pain relievers, fever reducers, and any other items you think your family might specifically need.
  • Have all the basic tools. This includes screwdrivers, hammer, wrench, tape (duct & electrical), pliers, and a knife should be enough to get you started.
  • Flares. Flares might sound extreme, but if your phone is dead or the weather is so bad that it interferes with your signal, you’ll be happy to have someone’s attention in the event of a roadside emergency.

Your winter emergency kit isn’t meant to be your survival stash for the coming apocalypse (perhaps we’ll post about that one later), but having the right supplies at the right time can save you major headaches – and maybe even your life! Here are some other helpful winter tips from our Service Manager, Tim.

Reasons to Buy or Lease a Car

Buy or Lease
To Buy or To Lease? That is the Question.

One of the most important decisions you make while looking for a new car is whether to buy or lease. Each option has its own benefits and downsides, but your final decision can truly depend on your lifestyle and financial situation. To make the decision between buying or leasing a bit easier, here are a few pros and cons for each: Buying When you purchase a car rather than lease it, it becomes yours. This allows you to modify the vehicle in whatever way you want. Buying a vehicle can be more expensive at first, since it typically has a higher down payment than leasing a vehicle. Eventually, though, you won’t have to pay your monthly payments any longer. The biggest downside to buying a vehicle has to do with the warranty. Typically, paying for vehicle repair falls on you once your vehicle’s warranty expires, which can be quite expensive. Leasing The majority of leases come with warranties that last for the entirety of the lease, ensuring the car is covered for service. Leasing is also cheaper at first glance with a small down payment getting you a lot of bang for your buck. When you lease a vehicle, though, your new vehicle has a restricted amount of miles you can travel. If you go over these miles, it’s likely you will have to pay a significant fee. You also can’t modify the vehicle at all during your leasing period. Whether you decide to buy or lease your next vehicle, Ewing Buick GMC in Plano, TX has great you will want to check out today.

The Dreaded Check Engine Light: What Does It Mean?

check engine light
The Pesky But Important Check Engine Light

One of the worst feelings in the world is when your check engine light goes on. While most drivers assume they’re about to spend big bucks at the mechanic, sometimes a check engine light is something simple. The check engine light is designed to pop on when there are potential problems, not emergency situations. That being said, you should take some time to consider what might be wrong with your car; however, waiting too long could do serious damage. According to LifeHacker.com, there are a range of potential problems. The most common one is a loose gas cap. Believe it or not, this can affect the suction/pressure in the fuel system. Sometimes a check engine light means just pulling over and tightening the cap. It could also just be spark plugs and wires. Generally, spark plugs last about 30,000 miles, so be sure to have your mechanic check them for a potential quick fix. More serious problems include a faulty O2 sensor or catalytic convertor. These are used for emissions control are more expensive due to the cost of parts and complexity of repairs. Though they’re not absolutely necessary, driving without them could do serious damage. Finally, it could be part of the car’s computer. The mass airflow sensor is an easy fix that basically just costs the price of the part. Whether it’s something simple or complex, stop by Ewing Buick GMC and have our vehicle service team look at it.

Preparing Your Car for a Summer Road Trip

Summer Road Trip
On the Open Road

The kids are out of school, which means it’s time to pack your bags and head out on a road trip. But, before you leave, follow these tips on preparing your car for a summer road trip.

  • Get a tune up. Schedule an appointment to have your car checked out before you leave. Have the oil changed, tires rotated, A/C inspected, and anything else you might need before you hit the road.
  • Clean your car. You don’t want to be driving around with pounds of unnecessary junk in your car. Not only will this reduce your cargo capacity, but it will reduce your fuel efficiency too. Spend an hour or two cleaning out your car and you’ll be glad you did.
  • Be prepared for issues. You had your car inspected, but that doesn’t mean you won’t accidentally leave your headlights on and drain your battery. Be prepared with a roadside emergency kit, including jumper cables, a first aid kit, flashlight, and other tools.

Are you taking your family on a road trip this summer? Stop in to Ewing Buick GMC in Plano, TX and let us help you make sure you are prepared for the road that lies ahead.

A New Year’s (Automotive) Resolution: Distraction-Free Driving Tips

distraction-free driving tipsEven if you already have a New Year’s resolution, we at Ewing Buick GMC think you should consider another one: distraction-free driving. With nearly 80% of crashes occurring because of driver distraction, you could greatly improve driving safety by following some of these distraction-free driving tips.

The first and most obvious tip is to put your phone down. According to the National DMV, drivers are distracted by secondary activities nearly 30% of the time while driving. Therefore, it makes sense to not only silence or turn off your phone, but put it somewhere you can’t reach it while driving.

Tip number two: drive solo when possible. Although you might not realize it, simply having a passenger in the car greatly increases the odds of an accident. If you do have a passenger, remember to keep conversation light.

Our third tip is to put down the burger. We’ve all seen the guy on the highway driving with his knees, hands busy with burgers and fries. Avoid eating, drinking, and smoking while driving. Two hands are better than one, guaranteed.

Last but not least, don’t fiddle with the knobs. If you’re prone to messing with the radio while driving, consider keeping it off while you drive. Although it might be hard to listen to only one station or silence, it’s always good to keep your eyes on the road.

Car Maintenance Tips

car maintenance tipsAlthough we have plenty of warm months ahead, summer is abruptly coming to an end. The kids will be back in school and vacation season will sadly cease. Now that things are getting back into a normal routine, it is important that you take care of your car’s needs. Here are some maintenance tips to help your car transition back.

  1. Check your tires – make sure that they are correctly inflated. If they are under or over inflated, you may have serious issues while on the road.
  2. Change your oil and oil filter – Make sure you change your oil between 3,000 and 7,500 miles. Also check your oil levels every other time you fill up your gas tank.
  3. Check your hoses and belts – Look for cracks, leaks, and deterioration.
  4. Check your coolant – Don’t let your car overheat while you are waiting in morning traffic.
  5. Replace your windshield wipers – Being able to see correctly out of the windshield is the most important thing about driving. If your wipers are leaving streaks, it’s time to replace them!
  6. Check your brakes – If you hear squeaky sounds when you stop your vehicle, it’s time to replace your brakes.
  7. Clean your battery- Look for corrosion! A clean battery will last longer and save you more money.

If you have any questions about car maintenance tips, speak with the professionals at Ewing Buick GMC! Make an appointment for service by giving us a call at (972) 665-3148.

Teenager’s “Hot Seat” Invention Aims to Save Lives during Hot Summer Months

"Hot Seat" inventionWhile most of us equate summertime with beautiful beaches, afternoons and evenings at the ballpark, and enjoying some fun in the sun with our family and friends, it’s important to remember that summer can be a dangerous time of year as well. In fact, just this year, 18 people have died just from being trapped inside a hot car for too long. Even more tragic, almost all such deaths are infant deaths—babies mistakenly left in hot, parked vehicles can’t survive long in such extreme conditions.

However, Alissa Chavez, a 17-year-old girl from Albuquerque, New Mexico, believes she has a solution to this sobering problem. Her “Hot Seat” invention, an alarm system that warns parents when they wander away from a child still in its car seat in a parked car, won her science fair three years ago, and she’s been tinkering with her invention ever since. Currently, she’s trying to raise enough money to build an actual prototype of the Hot Seat.

If you’d like to help Alissa Chavez make her Hot Seat system a reality, check out the invention’s indiegogo page to help fund this awesome, life-saving new safety feature. And if you’re looking for vehicles that already have excellent safety technologies, come see us here at Ewing Buick GMC to check out our top-rated and award-winning vehicles today.

Gas-Saving Tips

gas-saving tipsAre you planning on taking a road trip this summer? If some long-distance driving is in your plans this summer, be sure to check out these gas-saving tips. At Ewing Buick GMC we want to help you keep more money in your pocket during your trip to the beach or city this summer.

  1. Schedule maintenance at Ewing Buick GMC. Our trusted service team will make sure your fluids are topped-off, your tires have plenty of tread, and your oil change is up-to-date. Before you take any long journey, be sure to have your car checked out by the professionals.
  2. Relax and slow down, you’re on vacation after all! The higher the speed, the more gas/fuel you’re using. Slow down and take in the scenery while you are cruising down the interstate. You never know what you might see!
  3. Use cruise control when you can. If you are doing some major highway driving, cruise control will help you maintain a consistent speed while keeping you from wasting gas.
  4. Pack only the necessities. Extra baggage means extra weight which will definitely hurt your wallet when it comes to gas prices. When packing, try to keep your luggage within the vehicle as storing overhead can cause extra drag.

From the team here at Ewing we sincerely wish you safe travels this summer!