How to Prepare Your Car for a Long Road Trip
Are you preparing for a long road trip? Any responsible driver will prepare his or her vehicle for a long road trip. Here are some of the things that you should do to prepare your vehicle for an out of town travel:
One Month Before
You should schedule a major repair or maintenance work a month before your long road trip. You may think that’s too much of time, but it would help you in the long run as you would still have time to bring the car to the shop in case any problems related to the repair become apparent.
You should also check the coolant if you are headed to a destination that is a lot warmer or cooler than your place. Have your mechanic check the vehicle coolant’s mixture of antifreeze and water to ensure that your car is properly protected.
Check your tires and make sure these are inflated to the proper pressure. Low pressure can result to extra heat buildup that may cause a blowout when your car is moving at high speeds. Refer to your owner’s manual to check the recommended tire pressure of the manufacturer. You should also check the tire tread and determine if you need to change your tires.
One Week Before
A week before you go, get any scheduled maintenance task done. If you think your car needs an oil change, get it done now.
Check the tires again. By this time, the tire pressure should still be the same as they were the last time you had the tire pressure level checked. Then check your trunk and clean out anything that you would not need. The more stuff that you have on your car, the less fuel efficient your vehicle becomes.
You should also consider changing or cleaning the air filter, because a clogged one reduces fuel economy. Air filters are relatively inexpensive and easy to change.
You can also consider getting an AAA so that you can get some assistance just in case you encounter problems on the road like if your tire goes flat or you run out of gas. Check your extended car warranty, too, if it provides roadside assistance.
One Day Before
Wash and vacuum your car a day before you go. Again, check and change the tire pressure. Visit the local gas station and inflate your tires to a higher setting. Then fill the gas tank.
Check your headlight and blinkers. You don’t want to be on the road with fault lights as other motorists may have a hard time gauging their distance from you on the road.
Load your things. Open your suitcases and check whether you have everything in place. And ask yourself—do you really need to bring all that stuff. Unload things you think you can do without.
Load evenly and carefully. Place heavy objects in the trunk and distribute the weight evenly side to side. If you’re driving a car, don’t overload as your vehicle doesn’t have the greatest of carrying capacity.