Category Archives: Safety

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.

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.

Heat Exhaustion Symptoms, Treatment, and More

Heat Exhaustion Symptoms
Prevent You & Your Car From Overheating This Summer

While the weather is hot, it’s more important than ever to understand heat exhaustion, know its symptoms, and how to treat it. Heat exhaustion on its own isn’t particularly dangerous but can lead to the much more lethal heat stroke.

Heat exhaustion occurs when your body does not have enough water or salt. Common heat exhaustion symptoms include fatigue, dizziness, headache, fainting, pale skin, vomiting, and even general confusion.

If you believe that you may be experiencing heat exhaustion based on these symptoms, drink water or a sports drink as soon as possible. Moving to a cooler area will also help decrease your body temperature, so head to sit under a shady tree or go inside. These are not symptoms that you want to ignore.

If you notice that someone else may be experiencing heat exhaustion, offer them a drink and any aid they may need, as they might be experiencing confusion or may faint and need assistance.

You won’t experience these symptoms at Ewing Buick GMC’s new dealership in Plano, TX, coming in October, with our fully air-conditioned service department. You will be quite comfortable during your entire visit.

The Differences Between Chemical and Physical Sunscreen Are More Than You Think

 

the difference between Chemical and Physical Sunscreen
Enjoy the Beach This Summer

Though most of us know the importance of wearing sunscreen to protect our skin from the sun’s UV rays, many do not know the different types of sunscreen available. Primarily – there are physical sunscreens, chemical sunscreens, and hybrid types that include both physical and chemical properties.

The terms “physical” and “chemical” refer to the product’s method of blocking UV rays. Physical sunscreens create a physical barrier between your skin and the sun, with products such as titanium oxide and zinc oxide.

Meanwhile, chemical sunscreens use chemicals to actually absorb the sun’s rays. There are many chemicals commonly found in these types of sunscreen, including octylcrylene, avobenzone, and octinoxate.

So which type of sunscreen is right for you? Overall, both chemical and physical sunscreen will offer you significant protection, but each have their own pros and cons.

For example, while physical sunscreen is gentler on the skin and becomes effective the moment it’s applied, some physical ingredients do not cover the full UV spectrum. Conversely – chemical sunscreens offer full-spectrum protection but can irritate your eyes and skin and take twenty minutes to become effective.

Know that you know the difference between physical and chemical sunscreen, be sure to cover up this season! Let us know if you found this useful at Ewing Buick GMC in Plano, TX.

Buick Driving Dynamics Technology: Giving Drives a Leg Up During the Winter

Buick driving dynamics technology
Buick Keeps You Safe & In Control

Driving in bad weather can drastically increase the danger of being on the road. That’s why Buick has developed some innovative new features to help you stay safe during the winter months.

Buick driving dynamics technology consists of several systems like All-wheel drive (AWD) and StabiliTrak. The AWD system is different than 4Wd because it individually monitors each wheel and sends power where it’s needed with precise timing. According to Buick, this is available on the new Regal, LaCrosse, Encore, and Enclave, giving drivers excellent traction for bad winter conditions.

Aside from AWD, the StabiliTrak system also gives Buick owners a leg up. Electronic stability control recognizes when a car understeers or oversteers and can compensate for the slippage. In extreme situations, the system can even apply brakes when needed.

These two systems are the best in driving dynamics, ensuring you stay safe on the road. Buick also has some innovative features to keep you comfortable during the winter season, such as IntelliLink (available with 4G LTE Wi-Fi) and even heated steering wheels. These new systems highlight the luxury that comes standard with every Buick at Ewing Buick GMC in Plano, TX.

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.