June is just a month away, and that means summer! Summer is the busiest travel season, and the best time for long road trips. You may already be planning your summer getaway, but before you do anything else, make sure your car is road trip ready! After all, the last thing you want to have to worry about on a road trip is car trouble. Here is a handy road trip checklist of essential things to do before you hit the pavement.
When was the last time you checked/changed your oil? Clean oil is the lifeblood of your car. It’s not easy to forget to put gas in the car, but it can be easy to let your yearly oil change slip your mind. If you’re planning any kind of long trip, it’s crucial you make sure you’ve got clean oil. Additionally, oil gets dirty as you drive, so if you’re planning a long haul trip this summer, you may need to change it more than once. The typical rule of thumb is to change your oil about every 5,000 miles. Talk to your technician, because this also depends on the type of oil you’re using and your vehicle.
Checking your tires before a road trip goes beyond just the tire pressure. You’ll need to have the tread and general quality examined as well. Many tire shops offer free tire checks and air top-offs. During these checks, mechanics will typically measure the amount of tread as well as look for any imperfections that could cause blow-outs later. Since a flat tire is impossible to drive on and can really put a damper on a road trip, this simple task is one of the best and easiest you can do to ensure your tires are up for a trip.
Fix Windshield Chips
Even the smallest windshield chip can become a much bigger issue if left unattended. For instance, if you’re passing a truck or large vehicle and a rock accidentally hits your windshield, it could crack more easily if it’s already damaged. Avoid that risk. Take your car in for crack and chip repair before you go.
Check Air Systems
Nothing is worse than a broken AC unit on the hot road during the summer months. Avoid this happening by making sure your air filters have been changed and your AC unit is functioning. Ensure you have enough coolant and your fans are blowing properly. In addition, make sure your engine is staying cool and everything is functioning properly under the hood.
Brake pads wear out over time, and nobody wants to risk their brakes going out on the road. Get a brake inspection before you make any long road trips to ensure the pads are intact and the brake fluid is clean and functional. Typically, you can have this done when you take your vehicle in for an oil change.
Stock Your Vehicle
Lastly, but no less importantly, stock your glove box and trunk with items that could come in handy on long road trips. Tissues, flashlights, maps, sunscreen, snacks, blankets and coolers are great items to have ready. Be sure to also include safety items like a seatbelt cutter, first aid kit and bottled water.
From all of us here at Quick-Set Auto Glass, drive safely out there!