5 Car Maintenance Tips to Know for Long Road Trips
The idea of taking a road trip is pretty exciting. There’s nothing quite like hitting the open road and enjoying the view as you travel to new and exciting destinations. But before you hit the gas, there are a few things you need to do to ensure your car is ready for the journey ahead. But before that, let’s first talk about the importance of making sure your vehicle is in proper shape to take on a road trip.
Why Must You Pay Attention to Your Car Before a Long Road Trip?
Paying attention to your car’s maintenance can save you a ton of stress while you’re on the road. If you neglect routine car care, something major might fail while you’re out in the middle of nowhere. If you want to save money on repair costs, you must get an extended car warranty policy that covers your vehicle’s needs. Check online for the best extended car warranty providers to avail of one that offers enough coverage to keep your vehicle in tip-top shape and ready for a long road trip.
How to Ensure Your Car Makes It Through a Long Road Trip
Here are five car maintenance tips that will help keep your ride running smoothly on long road trips:
1) Do a Thorough Visual Inspection
Before a road trip, spend some time going over your vehicle with a fine-tooth comb. Make sure that everything is in working order and that there aren’t any signs of damage or wear. Look for cracks in the windshield as well as dents and scrapes on exterior body panels. Check the mirrors to ensure that they’re working properly. You must also examine underneath your car for any signs of fluid leaks, which can lead to a hazardous situation. When doing a visual inspection, you must pore over details that typically go unnoticed, such as the condition of your turn signals, headlights, and brake lights. These may be little things, but they could prove to be quite important if you were ever pulled over by a traffic cop. If something looks out of whack or suspicious, you should have it checked by a professional before hitting the road.
2) Check the Tire Tread
Tire tread is very important when you’re traveling on long road trips. Before taking off on your trip, you should check the depth of the tire treads with a penny. Place Lincoln’s head in between two tire lines, and if you always see his head, it’s time to get new tires. If you don’t see any of Lincoln’s head, then your tires are due for a replacement. Speaking of tires, you must also ensure that these are properly inflated. A tire that either has too much or too little air pressure will have a negative impact on your car’s performance.
3) Check Your Fluids
Oil is one of the most important fluids in your car. Every car needs the right kind of oil to ensure that its engine runs smoothly and efficiently. For long trips, you should use oil with a high viscosity index. The higher the number, the better. With regards to transmission fluid, it is best that you consult with a mechanic or get in touch with your manufacturer for specific recommendations. In addition, you should check your antifreeze as well as your brake fluid to make sure that they have the right level of fluid and aren’t dirty or diluted. Also, check your windshield wiper fluid to ensure that it’s nice and clean. If you detect any sign of leakage from any component of your vehicle, then it’s best that you bring it in for servicing before heading out on the road.
4) Check the Battery
Your battery is invaluable if you’re ever stranded on a deserted road. Therefore, before taking off for a long trip, be sure to check your car battery to make sure it has enough juice to get your vehicle started. You should also have your alternator checked as this component charges the battery and ensures that it has a full charge at all times.
5) Fill ‘er Up!
Before hitting the road, take a few moments to fill up your gas tank. It’s not a good idea to hit the road with a nearly empty tank because you never know when you’ll come across a gas station along the way. Even if you have a full tank, it’s best that you stop by the station to top up your fuel supply. This will allow you enough gas to last your entire trip without having to waste time stopping for gas every few miles.
Do Everything You Can to Ensure Your Vehicle is in Tiptop Shape
If you follow the tips mentioned, you’ll be able to go on a long road trip with peace of mind knowing that your vehicle is in tip-top shape. Always remember that being prepared for any situation while on the road is always better than being caught off guard.
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