What To Do When Your Car Overheats

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An overheated car is something to send to a professional technician, but we all know cars don’t wait until you’re at a car dealership to get hot.  Sometimes, you’re in the middle of nowhere when your temperature gauge starts rising and you don’t know what to do.  Well, your friends at Ron Carter Cadillac is here to help with these simple steps you should take if your car overheats.

Step One: Turn Off the Engine

This sounds obvious, but it is of such vital importance that it has to be mentioned. If your car’s temperature gauge gets into the danger zone, you smell coolant, or you see steam coming from the engine bay, it’s time to shut off the engine immediately.  This is one of those scenarios in which you really can ruin your engine for good. So if you do nothing else, shut off the engine and let it cool.

Step Two: Open the Hood

It is very important that you give the engine time to cool before you do anything further. If there is a broken radiator line or a hole in the radiator, there could be a very dangerous situation lurking underneath the hood. If there is steam escaping from the hood of the car, you need to give the car 15 minutes or so to cool down. Once the steam has cleared and the hood is open, give the car a good once-over to find any evidence of leaks or damage to the radiator or its hoses.

Step Three: Remove the Radiator Cap

Caution: You must be extremely careful about this. An overheated engine will be filled with incredibly hot liquid that is under pressure. Once the engine cools down, then, with a rag to protect your hand, remove the radiator cap. There will most likely be some steam that escapes so be very careful with this step. If you can’t see any water/coolant in the radiator, you need to add some.

This advice applies only if, as we suggested at the top, you’re in the middle of nowhere and need to get your car to safety. If you can, just have the car towed to a technician. If you can’t, you need to add some water or coolant or, ideally, a 50-50 mixture of the two.

Step Four: Start the Car

Assuming you don’t have a leaking radiator hose or a damaged radiator, you’ve allowed your car a good 10-20 minutes to cool, and your radiator is now full of coolant/water, you can start your engine.

Keep a very close eye on the temperature gauge and shut the car off again immediately if the gauge begins its climb back to the red zone. If the car continues to overheat, then driving it is not recommended. Park it and call for roadside assistance to bring it to a reputable service center like the expert service technicians at Ron Carter Cadillac.

We hope we’ve made it clear that this is a stop-gap solution to a problem that will ultimately require the attention of a technician. Come see us, and you’ll be back on the road in no time with the peace of mind that comes with knowing your vehicle was repaired by pros with genuine Cadillac parts.

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Dawn of a New Era: The 2017 Cadillac XT5

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Since its unveiling last year the automotive world is buzzing with excitement about Cadillac’s newest addition to their stable of award-winning luxury vehicles. In the months leading up to its roll-out, that buzz has been growing and now, the wait is finally over.

The XT5 has arrived and Ron Carter Cadillac has them. Here is just a taste of what to expect with Cadillac’s newest luxury SUV:

  • Space, The Luxurious Frontier: The XT5 comes within an inch of the outgoing SRX exterior dimensions while offering even more room in its cutting edge interior.
  • Did I say “cutting edge”?  I meant, “tip-of-the-technological-iceburg”.  If you’ve ever heard about it, this baby’s got it. From its review video camera system to exquisite interior materials and an entertainment package that has to be seen to be believed, the XT5 redefines the phrase “fully loaded” in spectacular ways.
  • Fuel For Your Horses: GM unveiled their 300 horsepowered 3.6L V6 in their ATS and CTS but before you long for the V8 powered behemoths of yesteryear, factor in the XT5’s 3,999 lbs for the front-wheel drive and 4,277 lbs for the all-wheel trim and you’ll be singing Cadillac’s praises every time you stop at the pump.
  • Sport Centered: If you’d still like a few more ponies under the hood, rumor has it Cadillac will be rolling out a sporty version of the XT5 in later model years.  The XT5 V-Sport will most likely be rolling with 350 horses thanks to GM’s 3.0L Twin-Turbo V6 LGW engine.

These are just a few of the highlights for Cadillac’s latest creation. Your opportunity to test drive this remarkable vehicle awaits you at Ron Carter Cadillac.  Suffice it to say, the rumors about the XT5 are true. Prepare to enter a new era of luxury driving, courtesy of Cadilllac and Ron Carter.

Tips For Driving In Flood Conditions

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As Houstonians have recently been reminded, flooding can happen unexpectedly.  Whether you call them “unpredictable rain events” or a thunderstorm, Gulf coast weather patterns can often wreak havoc on our drainage systems. Tenured Houston residents know all too well how quickly any of our roadways can turn into raging rivers. Unfortunately, not everyone knows the inherent dangers that comes with driving in flood conditions. That is why your friends at Ron Carter Cadillac are here with the following tips to help you know what to do the next time Mother Nature brings more rain than our drainage systems and waterways can handle.

 

Follow Government Instructions

When the storms have cleared and you need to get on the road, it’s always a good idea to check with the local law enforcement to make sure your area is safe for travelling. While evacuations may not have been called, certain areas may have travel restrictions due to currents and exceptionally high levels of water. Check with your city or county government website. Emergency preparation laws require local authorities to post warnings about certain areas, especially densely populated urban zones. Your television and radio will help keep you clued in. If you must drive, make sure you are fully aware of the current situation and are following all government guidelines.

Steady As You Go

When driving through high water, one of the greatest challenges you’ll face is preventing water from invading your engine’s sensitive inner mechanisms. One the most effective ways you can combat this problem is to keep a slow, steady pace through high water areas. Speeding through high water is never a good idea as water will easily splash up and into your engine causing you a nightmare of mechanical troubles. A nice, slow, steady pace will get you through most high water areas with minimal damage.

Do Not Use Smaller Vehicles

Smaller vehicles are more susceptible to water reaching the engine compartment.  If you’re not sure about the depth of a flooded area, before entering the water with your car, stop and watch other vehicles as they move through the area. If water is higher than the bottom of your car frame, you need to turn around and go back, if at all possible. Flood water washing over your hood may look cool but you need to know your vehicle is not amphibious nor is your engine compartment waterproof. As a friendly warning, driving through flood waters is considered to be a disqualifying incident for most car insurance plans. If you find yourself in trouble, County emergency personnel have access to vehicles that can handle flood waters. If you have a medical emergency, call 911. But, do not increase the risk of danger to yourself, your vehicle, or rescue personnel by trying to drive through flood waters.

Stick To The Edge

Do not drive through the center of the temporary pond or river, if you can help it. If you see a way to only encounter water that is three or four inches deep, then take it. Even if you have to apologize for messing up a yard, it is better to buy some new grass seed than to have to rent a car while yours is in the shop. This goes for any flood situation, if one side of the road is flooded, wait until traffic on the other side has died down and take it. Caution is your friend here, as a small wait can save you time, money, and embarrassment.

Don’t Panic!

You will need a calm and collected mind when driving through flood waters. You will need to be constantly observing the road, and your engine, all while maintaining a steady speed. If you are worried, or filled with doubt, then take a few moments and collect your thoughts. If the flood water is not too deep, and there is no active current, then you should be able to get through all right, as long as you keep your head. Some people find music helps them forget about all that can go wrong and focus on the task at hand. Whatever works for you, do it!

Turn Around, Don’t Drown

Particularly dangerous areas will be blocked off by the government. Do not ignore these closed road signs. If you have a need to travel somewhere in the closed off area, contact local law enforcement for assistance and advice. They will have current information about the safety conditions throughout the flood zones.

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At Ron Carter Cadillac we have everything you need to help get your car back on the road in case you’ve taken on damaging water. Or, if you’re in need of service to your vehicle following our recent flooding, our certified Cadillac technicians stand ready to serve you. So whatever your automotive needs may be, rain or shine, Ron Carter Cadillac is here to help you.

Fury Road: Tips To Avoiding Road Rage

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We’ve all been there.  You’re in a hurry to get to point “B” and it seems as if everyone around you graduated last in their class at the Stevie Wonder Driving School.  Your schedule is packed with appointments at all four corners of the city and it feels like someone has covered your car in ”I love driving 25 MPH” bumper stickers.  You’re late to your child’s music recital and 20 million of your fellow drivers are all suffering from a collective case of automotive cerebral flatulence.

There isn’t a person on this planet with any tenure behind the wheel of a vehicle that hasn’t lost their mind in one of our nation’s major metropolitan traffic jams at least once.  For as long as humanity has gathered together in large numbers and then tried to collectively move from point “A” to point “B”, there have been outbursts of frustration.  From horseback to horse powered vehicles, mankind seems intent on finding more ways to move faster while settling in the highest populated areas on the planet where moving faster makes for great fiction.

Because of the growing number of drivers on our nation’s roadways, the number of road rage incidents seem to be climbing with each passing day.  As more and more stressed out drivers take their frustrations out on their fellow man, the automotive industry is stepping up their attempts to educate the driving public to both the dangers of and methods of avoiding becoming a perpetrator or a victim of road rage. With this in mind, Ron Carter Cadillac is happy to offer the following tips to help keep your commuting as stress and incident-free as possible.

SLEEP IT OFF

According to the National Sleep Foundation, our nation is populated by a growing number of sleep deprived motorists. Full schedules and stressful situations are just some of the contributing factors to sleepless nights that most Americans suffer from.  Whatever the stimulus (or lack thereof) for the restless nights, most of us understand that with restlessness and stress comes crankiness, frustration, and even anger.  Now fill our nation’s highways with stressed-out, cranky drivers and you’ve got a recipe for a buffet of road rage.  The solution can oftentimes be as simple as getting a good night’s sleep. As difficult as that may seem, there are plenty of therapies, medications, and even exercises that will help even the most stressed out among us to get the rest they desperately need. Just imagine how different our daily commute would be if we were well rested. Now fill our highways with rested people and what do you see? Hopefully it’s a decline in road rage incidents.

MAKE TIME

One of the leading causes of road rage incidents is the frustrations associated with running late for work, appointments, etc. Obviously there will be times when circumstances prevent us from making a scheduled appointment time. But, if those circumstances are the norm instead of the exception, it may be time to learn some time management skills.  Trying to make up for a late start on the highway is a perfect catalyst for road rage.  There are many ways to improve our time management habits. One of the biggest steps to improving your drive time is planning ahead. Learning to plan for the next day’s schedule with a little bedtime preparation goes a long way towards alleviating the chaos of a typical morning. Laying out clothes or preparing the kids’ lunches before bedtime may sound like something associated with OCD, but you’ll be amazed at how much time you’ll save with just a little bit of preparation for the next day’s events.  Knowing the next day’s weather forecast will also help with planning a departure time that will allow for unexpected delays without all the rage.  In short, learning how to effectively manage time will go a long way toward reducing the stresses inherent in city commuting.

GET OVER YOURSELF

Yeah we know, that’s pretty blunt.  At the risk of crossing over into insulting territory, we acknowledge that when it comes to subjects of behavior modification, some truths are difficult to hear.  But the truth of the matter is many road rage incidents occur because most drivers believe their driving habits are the standards by which all other drivers are to be measured.  As ego-building as that belief may be, the fact of the matter is no one on the road is more important than anyone else.  If more people drove with courtesy and respect for other drivers, the number of road rage incidents would decline rather drastically.  Consider this tip as a challenge for personal growth and development.  Learning not to take things personally will go a long way toward improving much more in our lives than just our commute to and from work.  After all, we’re pretty safe in assuming there aren’t too many people who are proud of their road rage activities once they have calmed down and the ones that brag about their rage-fueled commutes generally aren’t very popular.  If your priority is avoiding road rage, choosing to keep a healthy, non-self-centered perspective on life goes a long way toward achieving that goal.

RECORD YOURSELF

If you really want a perspective-shifting experience, record yourself driving in traffic.  Many corrective classes for aggressive drivers instruct their students to record themselves and teach them how to analyze their habits in order to curb road rage incidents.  Here are just a few of the analytical questions you may want to ask yourself as you listen to your recording:

Do you regularly speed in order to get to your destination on time?

Do you regularly tailgate other drivers, especially in a freeway’s “fast lane”?

Do you regularly use your lights and horn to communicate your frustration with other drivers?

Do you verbally communicate with other drivers despite the fact that they cannot hear you?

Do you regularly weave in and out of traffic in order to save time?

Do you regularly feel the need to set other drivers straight?

These questions are designed to inform, not rebuke or punish aggressive driving behavior. The idea is to pinpoint observable habits that fuel frustrations that can easily lead to road rage. Once armed with this information, the driver is left with some choices to make. Ignore the behavior or take steps to develop driving habits that will result in a much less stressful driving experience. As always, the choice for personal growth and development is up to each of us to make.

BE EXCELLENT TO EACH OTHER

“All the world needs is love” John Lennon said and nowhere on earth is that fact more apparent than on our roadways. Of all of the tips we could give on the subject of reducing road rage incidents, this one seems the most simplistic.  And yet, if we can invoke another Lennon tune, just imagine what our highways would look like if people were just kinder to one another.  We’re not advocating everyone buy a VW bug and fill it with flowers to spread across the land. But, consider just how different the world would be if kindness was the defining characteristic of humanity.  At the very least the jails, hospitals, and cemeteries would be less crowded with the victims and perpetrators of road rage incidents if we could all just learn how to be excellent to each other.

Yeah, we know.  Road rage seems to be here to stay but if we all just put in a little effort to work on our perspectives and attitudes, especially when we’re behind the wheel of our vehicles, we can imagine a world where road rage incidents become the exception rather than the norm on our highways and byways.  In any event, we hope these tips will not only help you get to your destination with your sanity and self esteem intact but maybe, just maybe, help you learn how to enjoy the journey along the way.

The Wait Is Over: Meet The 2016 Cadillac CT6

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Cadillac’s game-changing vision has been the talk of the automotive industry for a couple of years now and with each introduction of their redesigned line of vehicles, the talk has grown in volume and decibel level.  When Cadillac unveiled the CT6 at last year’s Detroit Auto Show, the noise reached deafening levels.  Industry insiders and car reviewers alike are almost universally praising Cadillac’s impressive display of muscular indulgence wrapped up in the expertly designed CT6 and now the wait to experience Cadillac’s newest luxury sedan is almost over.

Just a quick look at the sedan’s body gives the impression that Cadillac isn’t interested in copy-catting the competition. Sporting a new chassis that GM designed as the foundation for future full-sized luxury cars and crossovers, The CT6 weighs in at nearly 3,700 lbs which makes it one of the lightest vehicles of its class by far. Toss in the magnetically adjustable shocks and four-wheeled steering and you’ve got one of the most unique handling and driving experiences available in a car of this size.

But don’t let the “lightweight” moniker throw you.  There is a beast waiting for you underneath the hood in the form of several drive trains.  The featured player is a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that effortlessly runs 400 horses down the highway without breaking a sweat. If this sounds like too much muscle, there are also a 3.6-liter V6 (335 hp) and a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder (265 hp) options as well. Needless to say, Cadillac’s reputation for putting muscle where their mouths are suffers no setback with the CT6.

The interior is fully stocked with Cadillac’s eye for luxury and technology.  If you’re looking for a spacious cabin with all of the amenities modern drivers demand, you’ve come to the right place.  From the 34-speaker Bose audio system to a wireless charging pad for mobile devices, a 360-degree camera system designed for security both while you’re driving with a recording feature as well as an automatic power-up mode if the car detects anyone hanging around the car to closely when parked. You can add night vision and pedestrian detection to the camera security and safety features.

There’s much more to discover for yourself with this incredible full-sized luxury sedan. Ron Carter Cadillac is excited to be offering these new sedans when they roll into dealerships across the nation later this month. Shop us online or stop by our showroom and schedule your test drive with Cadillac’s newest addition to their game-changing stable of luxury sedans, coupes, SUVs, and crossovers. Just one test drive is all you’ll need to discover no one moves you like Cadillac and Ron Carter.

Common Sense Automotive Theft Prevention Tips

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Every year there are billions, yes you heard that right…billions of dollars worth of personal items and accessories stolen from vehicles. These items can range from a pair of sunglasses, to CD collections, to stereo systems and other valuables. Most thefts happen when you least expect it, but one thing you can expect, is for the thieves to be quick. Although there really is nothing you can do to completely stop these criminals from doing what they are going to do, there are a few things you can do to reduce your chances of being a target.

Lock Your Doors

The first step clearly seems like a no-brainer, however, 25% of thefts occur from unlocked vehicles! Whether you are just running in to grab a coffee or maybe you are just running up to return your Redbox, all it takes is a few seconds and a turned back to have your car broken into and your valuables taken.

Keep It Tidy

If you think that you are out of harms way because your car is cluttered with useless and invaluable junk, you might want to think again. One mans trash is another mans treasure, and just because you could live without that stuff doesn’t mean that you should want to fork out the money for a new window. Keep your car picked up and don’t give thieves a reason to believe they will be rewarded for their risk.

Put Your Valuables Away

This may also seem quite obvious, however you would be surprised at how many people leave things laying around. Don’t send theives an invitation to shop freely at your expense. There are some accessories that many of us have in our vehicles, and most of the time we don’t pay attention to the message that they send. Most thieves are experts in their field of work and are aware of all the tale-tell signs. So hiding your iPod in your glove box probably isn’t the best idea if your charger chord is plugged in and hanging out. If you can’t take it with you, make it seem as though it isn’t there.

Create Better Habits

When parking your car, make sure it is in a well-lit atmosphere and be alert of your surroundings. And if you can help it, try not to park your small car, in-between two large vehicles. When you head home, make sure that all of your valuables again, are put away and always take your garage opener, GPS, and other things that might look intriguing. Whether you are home or not, never leave your GPS out in plain-eyes-view. If the thieves really wanted to, they could track where you have been, and potentially find your home to do more damage.

Sometimes theft is unexplainable and unpreventable. However, with these simple steps you could be one step closer to being less of a target for auto theft and car break-ins.  Stop by Ron Carter Cadillac and visit with our knowledgeable and trusted to staff to get behind the wheel of a vehicle that has enough room and storage to keep your possessions stowed away at all times.

Missed Manners: Top Four Driving Etiquette Tips

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Five o’ clock traffic can cause some major stress and road rage. But when you find yourself behind the wheel, it’s important to remember your driving etiquette. Possessing the proper driving etiquette techniques will not only keep you safe on the road, but will help others to drive safe around you. Take a look at these four basics:

Turning Signals

When you’re switching lanes, it’s polite to put on your turning signal to let others know that you will need to get over. If you’re making a turn, using your turn signal will help drivers behind you to brake accordingly, that way they will be prepared to slow down and won’t have to slam on their brakes.

Plan Accordingly

If you know that your turn or exit is approaching, make time to get over, and don’t rush to get into the turning lane last minute. This is especially important if you are driving on a busy street or highway with multiple lanes. Cutting across multiple lanes of traffic can be complicated, so the more time you give yourself to slowly get into your exit lane, the less dangerous your driving will be.

For Fast Drivers Only

Generally the left lane is known as the passing lane, so if you’re planning on driving slow, stay in the right lane. It’s improper etiquette to hold up the left, fast lane by driving slow. To keep with the flow of traffic, choose the proper lane to drive in. If you are driving in the left lane and a car behind you gets too close, or starts tailgating, return to the right lane and let them pass.

Tailgating

Sometimes you’re just really, really running late for work, but tailgating is not the answer! Tailgating is when a vehicle drives very close to the rear end of the vehicle in front of them. Doing this could be a driving hazard! If the vehicle that you are tailgating slams on their brakes, you could easily hit them. Keep a proper distance from the vehicle in front of you, or just choose to pass them in a different lane.

Ron Carter Cadillac offers safe vehicles for safe drivers. If you need a new car to enhance your safe driving etiquette, then take a trip over to our showroom and let your friends at Ron Carter Cadillac help you find the perfect car for you!