5 City Driving Tips for Your Next Trip to Dallas

Dallas is the ninth largest city, population-wise, in the United States. With that many people in such a small area, it’s sure to grow hectic at times. Those who aren’t used to big city driving might call local motorists aggressive, but when you’re trying to get somewhere in Dallas, the less assertive you are, the more likely you are to cause an accident. So how do visitors survive the cluttered roadways?

Know the Lay of the Land

driving_tips_in_dallas
Image via Flickr by Sejohnso1

 

Buy a map of Dallas or look one up on Google Maps before you venture into the city. Residents know where they’re going, and they’re in a hurry to get there. If you are heading up Central Expressway during peak traffic time and don’t know if you’re supposed to veer east or west on 635, no GPS in the world can help you get to the correct lane in time. You might as well take a deep breath and catch a U-turn after the next exit.

Check Out Closures Before Heading Into Town

On any given day, there is construction going on. Since ice and sleet aren’t a major factor, work on roadways can be completed any time of the year. Therefore, the best way to dodge traffic jams is to check closures in advance. Channel 5 offers a traffic map that they update frequently. Also, the Waze app utilizes the community to document problems on roadways, so a passenger in a vehicle 30 miles south can alert other motorists of a two-by-four in the middle of the Interstate 35E entrance ramp.

Avoid Traveling in Rush Hour

Even though the streets in this metropolis are normally bustling, they turn into parking lots from 7-9 a.m. and 4-6 p.m. People rush to arrive at work on time or eagerly dart home. So, avoid those hours when masses of vehicles fill the roadways.

Avoid the Freeways

Taking the side streets is beneficial, especially during the holiday season when festive decorations fill trees and courtyards. In addition to reminding you of all the beautiful sights in the area, avoiding the freeways makes for a more peaceful drive. Select a radio station to your liking (there are tons to choose from), and embrace a longer but less fierce travel to your destination. You might even get a whiff of the ham and cheese muffins coming from J.D.’s Chippery as you drive down Hillcrest and stop to delight in the most amazing cookies west of the Mississippi River.

Take the Dallas North Tollway

When all else fails, pay the fee to access the toll road. This is a cashless venture. Cameras take a picture of your plates if you don’t have a Texas toll tag, and you receive a bill in the mail. Keep in mind this thoroughfare might be just as crowded as the other freeways, especially if there are road closures or it’s a Friday afternoon.

Essentially, if you want to travel in Dallas, pack your patience. Although the people are lovely there, the traffic is something else. Still, don’t get too distressed about aggressive drivers that you forget to soak in all there is to offer in Texas’s third most populated city.

 

5 Best Auto and Car Museums Around Texas

For a car lover, overdosing on classic cars at car shows and museums is impossible. Texas has some fantastic car museums featuring unique collections that car enthusiasts will adore. Instead of visiting every museum with a certain make or era of car, take a trip around Texas and look at a different representation of automobiles in every city where you stop. These five museums will expand your car knowledge and deepen your zeal.

Horton Classic Car Museum

Horton Classic Car Museum - Lone Star Cars
Image via Flickr by chimichagua

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Car-to-Car Communication: How Vehicles Are Talking to Each Other

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), close to 6 million car accidents occur each year. Car companies continue to take steps to make cars safer for consumers using the most sophisticated technology.

Although car-to-car communication may sound like something from “The Jetsons,” but this is not science fiction. Learn more about this futuristic technology and where you can soon find it.
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5 Auto Accessories Every Dog Owner Needs

Taking your furry friend along on car trips can be a hassle. By nature, dogs are frisky four-legged creatures that thrive on running wild and free. Traveling in a car is unnatural to dogs, but with the right pet accessories, you and Sparky can have a comfortable ride together. Check out five car accessories every dog owner needs in their arsenal.

Waterproof Seat Covers

5 Auto Accessories Every Dog Owner Needs - Lone Star Cars
Image via Flickr by jdnx

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Top 6 Underrated Used Cars

Sometimes there are great cars that just don’t sell well. Whether it’s because of the name or current car trends that prevent buyer interest, there have been some great cars that didn’t sell well but could make fantastic, affordable used cars today.

Acura NSX, 1990-2005

Acura NSX, 1990-2005 - Lone Star Cars in Plano, TX
Image via Flickr by hedrives

Let’s start off with an oldie but a goodie. There’s no good reason why this car wasn’t truly a big hit, other than it was a sporty car made by Honda. The modest exterior was hiding a fantastic, aluminum V6 engine and all-aluminum chassis. It’s time to go looking for a throwback of this car that was made from 1990 to 2005, as it’s been re-released in 2016.

Ford Focus, 1998

As the first mid-size hatchback to have independent rear suspension, we have no idea why this car wasn’t a huge success. The 1998 Focus featured a bold design and radical engineering as well as great driveability as a bonus. Though most people bought it only for the hatchback, this truly was one of the best driving Ford cars released in the last 20 years.

Porsche Boxter

Surprised? Yeah, so are we. The Porsche Boxter is a well-known car, but not always a well bought car. This fantastic car is sometimes considered the cheap Porsche or a Porsche for girls. We have to say, if that’s true, boys have bad taste. There have been many iterations of the Boxter released, and each one has its own great qualities, but the most recent has a great engine sound and aggressive handling.

BMW E46 M3, 2001-2006

Talk about an underrated car. This BMW resells for just $16,000. If you’re looking for a great-looking used car that also handles well, this is the one to look for. The V6 engine, good suspension, fantastic steering, and fat tires all combine to create a great drive.

Chevy Spark

Unlike many cars that are designed to be short and tiny, this doesn’t make you feel like you’re driving in a packed clown car. The interior is designed to be cute, with motorcycle-inspired instruments and paneling. The perky, quick handling only adds to the greatness of this car. It’s cheap to run and the outside doesn’t look so bad. What more could a used car buyer ask for?

Ford Taurus SHO

Why buy new when you can buy used? Ford has released a 2016 version of the Taurus SHO, but we think this is a great used car to buy. The Fusion is not the only Ford Sedan we should be talking about. The Taurus is about 10 inches bigger than the Fusion and has an EcoBoost V6 engine that can pack a punch with 365 horsepower. You should definitely give this all-wheel drive car a chance if you’re looking for something to buy used.

No matter what style of car you’re looking for, we’ve included some great options for the discerning driver who’s looking to buy used and save money without sacrificing driveability, look, or comfort. Don’t take it from us, there are plenty of cars that fit this description.

 

Four Driveable Weekend Getaways for Dallas Car Owners

Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway, or you just want to get the family out of the house for a weekend, Dallas has several locations that aren’t too far away and give you a satisfactory mini-vacation. From outdoor excursions to other family friendly ventures, you’ll find something that’s sure to please every member of your party. Here are just a few places close to the “Big D” that offer entertainment and a fun drive to boot.

Hamilton Pool

Hamilton Pool - Lone Star Cars
Image via Flickr by Modern Relics

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3 Infamous Cars and Their Scandals

Some cars gain admiration and capture headlines for all the right reasons, but some vehicles become infamous due to unforeseen problems. Let’s  look at some of those cars and the associated circumstances that have caused car enthusiasts to raise their eyebrows.

The Ford Pinto

Since gasoline is highly flammable, it could be argued the mere act of sitting in a gas-powered car is dangerous enough in itself. However, car manufacturers usually take proper precautions to keep fiery explosions from happening. Then, if problems occur, they’ll fix the issues. However, that’s not what happened with the Ford Pinto.
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Avoid Title Jumping During a Car Purchase

Buying a car online can be a more budget-friendly option and may give you more access to a wider variety of vehicles. However, title jumping is an issue when buying a vehicle online. Title jumping occurs when car owners do not get their names registered with the vehicle. This lack of registration could happen for many reasons: poorly completed paperwork, shady deals, or lack of knowledge. Discover some helpful information to make sure that you don’t end up in a situation that could pose legal problems for you in the future.

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