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Preparing Your car for a Road Trip

July 24th, 2013

road-trip-planningIt’s that time of year! Sleeping bags are being crammed in the trunk, coolers are filled with lunch meat and families across the nation are filling up their gas tanks for their annual road trip. Before stock piling your road trip car, there’s a few things you should ensure are taken care of first. Road trip planning is a very exciting time, but there are plenty of important things that you must remember throughout this process. Taking care of your road trip car before hitting the highway can save you a lot of hassle and stress.

Important things to take care of on your road trip car before leaving town:

Check your tires: To get the best possible mileage out of our road trip car, it’s a good idea to check the air pressure of all tires. Additionally, take a gander for any cracks or holes. If you haven’t had them rotated in a while, take care of that before planning a road trip. Also, double check that there is a spare tire in your road trip car just in case something happens during your travels.

Fill necessary fluids: Check out the owner’s manual of your road trip car to understand what level each fluid needs to be at and fill them up accordingly. The coolant, oil and transmission fluid levels are important for your road trip adventures. Allowing your coolant levels to go down too low can increase the likelihood of overheating. With some fluids, be aware that there will also be filters that need checking, such as the engine oil and transmission fluid. Additionally, filling up the window washer fluid in your road trip car can create an easier driving experience – we all know how annoying those bugs get while driving down a freeway.

Pack emergency items: It’s always better to be safe than sorry. While packing up your road trip car, be sure to include a small first aid kit, a gallon of water, a gas can, a flashlight and batteries as well as jumper cables. Sometimes it just doesn’t matter how much planning we do, cars seem to break down at the worst possible times. Filling your road trip car with the essentials can lessen the stress involved with dealing with these issues.

Test your battery: Checking the battery in your road trip car can easily be completed by visiting most auto centers. Make sure the battery is fully clean and holds a full charge before heading out.

Check hoses and belts: Think of hoses and belts like the veins of your road trip car. If they aren’t fully functional and healthy, your vehicle can experience an array of issues while you’re vacationing. Maintaining your hoses and belts can increase the reliability of your road trip car and decrease the changes of unwanted repairs while you’re trying to get to your vacation destination. Allowing hoses or belts to crack or break can lead to expensive repairs, so learn how to check them yourself or take them into a shop and get a quick look.

Get new wipers: Driving your regular route might seem easy to you with a slightly impaired visual when it’s raining. Most of us have road trip planningdelayed getting new wipers when we knew they weren’t functioning at their highest quality. However, planning a road trip is a different story. Clear vision and having the best possible view of the road is imperative for your safety. Even if rain isn’t in the forecast, it can’t hurt to get those wipers before heading out on the road.

Are you planning a road trip in the future but want to find the right vehicle for your vacation? If fuel economy and interior space are important features of your future automobile, our comparison tool can help you identify which vehicles include these elements. Start your comparison today to find the right road trip car for your family.