Tag Archives: driving tips

Check Out These Thanksgiving Travel Tips While It’s Still Early

Thanksgiving
Be Safe this Holiday Season!

Do you have a long family trip ahead of you this holiday season? You are going to want to make sure that – before you dig into that turkey – your family’s trip to grandma’s is as efficient, safe, and short as possible.

Here are some Thanksgiving travel tips to help you prepare:

  • Be sure that every member of the family has everything they need by creating a separate packing list just for them.
  • Research your route ahead of time before hitting the road. If you rely entire on a GPS system to get you there, you may find yourself delayed or lost if there is traffic, construction, etc.
  • Pack non-perishable, healthy snacks for the road so that you will be less tempted to stop for fast food, which can make you sluggish behind the wheel.
  • If you’re taking to the skies, be sure to pack refillable water bottles that you can get through security and then fill up with fresh water before boarding.
  • Lastly, plan any air travel as far in advance as you can, ensuring that you have plenty of options and can make the right financial decision.

For more family driving tips or to check out our many available, spacious vehicles, visit us anytime at Blackburn Nissan.

Safety Tips for Driving near Bicycles

bicycleNow that spring is here, many more cyclists will be out and about. As drivers, we have to make room for them and respect their right to share the road. Driving near bicycles can be nerve-wracking, but if we follow these safety tips, we can make the road safer for cyclists.

First of all, you should understand that bicyclists are legally allowed to bike on the road, but they are not allowed to bike on the sidewalk, so don’t complain about them being in the road. If there’s no bike lane, you just have to deal with going slow for a while. It won’t kill you, but you could kill them, so keep that road rage in check.

Be very cautious when turning, especially making left turns. You may not realize how fast a bicycle is coming toward you and end up causing a collision, so it’s best to wait for them to pass. Always signal before changing lanes or turning, too—this is a given, but especially when cyclists are around.

Just be courteous, pay attention, and accept that cyclists aren’t going anywhere—and that isn’t a bad thing.

How to Clean Your Car’s Interior

cleaning suppliesEspecially in winter time, the interior of your car can get pretty dirty. You’re tracking in mud, snow, leaves, and all kinds of things that don’t belong, so you’ll want to give your car a thorough cleaning sometime this season to keep it from getting irredeemably gross before spring hits. Here are some easy tips on how to clean your car’s interior!

First, get some supplies together. Make sure you have a vacuum with hose attachments and an extension cord that can reach from your car to an outlet. Get paper towels, window cleaner, a hose, and vinyl cleaner if you have vinyl seats.

Clear out any trash in the car before you start the actual cleaning. Next, take out the floor mats. Hook up your vacuum and sweep everywhere—the floor by your feet, under the seats, the seats themselves. Next, shake out or vacuum the floor mats and hose them down if they’re plastic and especially dirty.

If you have vinyl seat covers, spray them with a vinyl cleaner and wipe them down. Now, use window cleaner to clean the dashboard and windows. Then, you’re done!

Do You Know These Lesser-Known Car Facts?

Cars have become one of the fastest growing industries in the world. In a matter of years, this invention revolutionized the way we travel, connecting people from across the globe. We’ve put together a list of lesser-known car facts as a tribute to these mind-boggling machines.

highwayAccording to Autonet, the number of cars on the planted reached one billion in 2010. That means that one in every six people owns a set of wheels. In the US, more than 250 million cars are registered, which means that roughly 70% of citizens have their own car.

New car smell is derived from an array of chemical compounds found in the interior of your car. Emitting volatile organic compounds (VOCs), synthetic materials create what many people have come to associate with freshness. Believe it or not, it has even been bottled as a fragrance.

How many parts are in your car? Try 30,000, including nuts and bolts. The transmission alone often has up to 1,000 individual parts.

It would take you roughly six months to reach the moon if you travelled at highway speeds the entire time. Think twice next time you complain about your morning commute.

The AutoTram Extra Grand is a German vehicle developed to carry 256 passengers. Consisting of four bus-length compartments wrangled together, this model is nearly 200 feet long.

Finally, the longest traffic jam lasted for 12 days in Beijing in 2010. Located on the road National Expressway 110, the string of cars was over 62 miles long.

How to Improve Fuel Efficiency in Cold Weather

frozen windshieldWe use more fuel in the colder months, but we don’t have to, or at least not as much. If you follow these tips, it’ll be a snap for you to improve fuel efficiency in cold weather.

There are a lot of reasons we use more fuel when it’s cold. It takes longer for cars to warm to their optimum temperature for fuel, for one. Plus, when we use heaters, seat warmers, and the defrost, it takes more energy, which uses up more fuel. Cold air also increases wind resistance, decreases tire pressure, and hurts your battery’s performance.

But there are plenty of easy things you can do to reverse some of these problems. Don’t warm up your car before you go somewhere—idling is the biggest waste of gas there is. If you have a garage, park inside it, so your car spends less time getting up to temperature. And check your tire pressure regularly! If they’re low, fill ‘em up.

Holiday Season Tips For Traveling with Pets

traveling with petsThe holiday season is almost upon us, and, just like the retail stores preparing for Black Friday, it’s time for you to prepare for your holiday road trips. Whether you are going over the river and through the woods to grandma’s house or merely down the street, you don’t want to leave your beloved pets behind. To make sure your road trip this year is comfortable for both you and Fido, follow these tips on traveling with pets and stay safe this holiday season!

Take your pet on practice runs. Before you leave for your six-hour trip to your Auntie Sue’s, make sure your dog or cat is used to being in the car. Short practice runs completed before leaving for your holiday vacation are a great way to ensure that your pet is comfortable with being in the car for long periods of time.

Use a crash-tested pet carrier. A dog or cat roaming free in your car while you are driving is just an accident waiting to happen. To keep both you and your pet safe on your road trip, make sure you put Garfield and Odie into crash-tested pet carriers or seat restraints. This will eliminate the distraction of a loose animal, while also ensuring your pets’ safety if an accident were to occur.

Stop for frequent bathroom breaks. Just like humans, pets can’t handle long car rides without frequent breaks. Stop frequently for bathroom breaks and to allow your animal to stretch its legs before continuing on your journey. Every two to three hours should be perfect.

Don’t leave your pet by itself in your car. Whether it’s freezing cold or scorching hot, you should never leave an animal in your car by itself. There are a multitude of things that can go wrong, concluding in your pet’s injury or death. Be sure to find pet-friendly accommodations and restaurants along your route so your pet can stay with you when you stop overnight.

Follow our tips regarding traveling with pets, and you are guaranteed a great holiday season. If you’re looking for a fun activity to do with your pets this holiday season, besides taking a road trip, you can enter our Pet Halloween Costume Contest! At Blackburn Nissan you have the opportunity to win a $50 Visa gift card!

Bad Gas Does Serious Damage to One Driver’s Car

Bad Gas does Serious DamageRecently, a New Jersey gas station faced major charges when their pumps filled multiple cars with water. According to a recent AOL Autos article, one woman filled her almost empty tank, only to find her vehicle stopping dead just a short distance after leaving the gas station.  Though at the time, she had no idea what it could be, she had her car towed to her local dealership and found that her fuel tank had been filled with mostly water.

The gas station blamed the problem on a bad fuel delivery, but still took full responsibility and paid all affected drivers’ related bills, except this particular woman. Her bill came to more than $3,000, as the dealership replaced the fuel lines and injectors. The gas station claimed this was more than what was required, and may face sanctions from The Bergen County Division of Weights and Measures if the bills don’t get paid.

This scenario is very unlikely, but can happen if the gas station gets a bad fuel delivery, or when the station’s fuel tank is low. Water is heavier than gas, so if the fuel tank gets low, you may find that water has collected at the bottom of the tank. Of course, as consumers it’s nearly impossible to know if you’re putting water into your tank. In the unlikely event this does happen, it is recommended that you do your research on what repairs are required, and follow your shop or dealership’s guidance on such repairs.