How To Prepare For Safe Summer Road Trips
It looks like ALL travel has taken a hit this year. No one is even thinking about traveling in a plane, on a bus, or taking a cruise!
But road trips are about the same as last year; it's just that they've now jumped to first place for this years summer travel plans. We still need to get away.
Before you do though...a memorable trip is great when it doesn't involve a bunch of car problems...breaking down on the side of the road in scorching heat, with no one around within 100 miles...yes! It's things like this that can really ruin your fun meant to be the trip of a lifetime travels.
I realize that many of you are on top of these things...but some of us know how to drive; not how to really check for the very important simple things that can make or break a trip. Here is a little list of things to check before you head out. I would say don't wait until the morning of. Check this stuff out a week before you plan on heading out, and then recheck right before you leave. It might save you from a lot of troubles.
Test Your Battery
Do I know how to check a battery? NO. But I have friends that do, and I can always go to my favorite trusted mechanic George who always gives me great advice.
This is one of my daily pet peaves. If there are streaks on the windshield...ugh! Let alone you're road tripping and it's stormy and you can't see a thing. Not safe. Replace your wipers and make sure they are installed correctly. A lot of places that sell wipers will install them for you before you even leave their lot.
Make sure all of your lights are working
Need I say more? Don't take a trip with brake lights out, or if you only have one headlight. You are begging for trouble.
Replace Worn Brakes
I've never let my car get so bad that the brakes go out. This is a no brainer. If your brakes are in bad shape, spend the money on fixing them. Don't risk your life or someone elses.
Change Your Oil
This is inexpensive whether you do it yourself or take it somewhere, it's something that should be part of your regular vehicle maintenance. Nothing runs well if the oil is messed up!
Check Your Coolant Level
Overheating is no fun..and it's a nightmare for your vehicle. If you don't know how to check it or fill it, bring it to your mechanic and have him show you how to do it, as he's checking your vehicle over.
Other things to keep in mind
- Belts, Hoses, and Tires
- Use a Fuel System Cleaner
- Keep Essential Tools In Car
- Be Sure You Have A Roadside Emergency