Getting Your Car Ready For A Road Trip

Getting Your Car Ready For A Road Trip

Spring is nearly here, and that means warmer, sunnier days and more opportunities to take road trips! Whether you’re traveling for just a couple of days or spending a few weeks on the road, it’s important to make sure your vehicle is prepared. A little preparation and some basic maintenance can prevent a variety of unnecessary problems that can throw a wrench in your plans. 

Here are some tips to keep your road trip fun, safe, and hassle-free!

Check Your Tire Pressure & Tread

Low tire pressure puts you at risk of blowouts—it also lowers your gas mileage and speeds up tire wear. Before hitting the road, check the tire pressure on each of your tires using a tire gauge. You can find the recommended tire pressure on or near the driver’s side door. Don’t be tempted to rely on your tire monitoring system (TPMS), as it will only alert you when your tires are significantly underinflated. 

While you’re checking your tire pressure, take a look at the state of your tread. If your tire tread is less than 2/23 of an inch, you should replace your tires before going on your trip. Low tread is unsafe because it reduces your traction on the road and increases the likelihood of getting into an accident. If you don’t have a tread depth gauge, you can use a penny to measure the depth. Insert the coin upside down inside a tread groove with Washington facing you; if you can see the top of his head, you should replace your tires. 

Make Sure Your Lights Are Working

Visibility is vital for safe driving. Check that all your essential lights are working, including the headlights, taillights, fog lights, turn signals, and brake lights. If any of the lights are burnt out or seem dim, have them replaced. 

Replace Your Windshield Wiper Blades (If Needed)

Check the condition of your wiper blades. If they are cracked, frayed, or damaged, they should be replaced. It’s also a good idea to turn your windshield wipers on; if they leave streaks or make a high-pitched squeak or scratching noise, it’s time to replace them. 

Check Your Oil 

Find out when you had your last oil change; if it was more than 5,000 miles, or if you’ll reach the 5,000-mile point during your road trip, schedule an oil change before you leave. If you’ve recently had an oil change, check your oil levels and top the oil off if needed. 

Top of Your Other Automotive Fluids

In addition to the oil, you should also check the levels of your other fluids, including transmission, coolant, windshield wiper fluid, and power steering fluid. If any of the levels are low, top them off. 

Check for Cracks, Tears, and Leaks

Take a look under the hood to see if you have any damaged belts or hoses or see any signs of fluid leaks. If there’s any visible damage or leaks, be sure to schedule repairs before your trip. 

If you discover you need repairs on any of the above, we recommend visiting Central Avenue Automotive.Family-owned and operated for over 20 years and conveniently located just a few steps away from our shop, they share our passion for customer service and commitment to high-quality work.   

How Does Your Windshield Look?

Before hitting the road, make sure you have a clean, crack-free windshield. Cracks can obstruct your vision and affect the structural integrity of your car if you get into a rollover accident. Small cracks and chips can also turn into larger cracks over time, especially when you’re driving at high speeds—or if rocks or other debris get kicked up onto your windshield by other cars. 

If your windshield is damaged—or gets damaged while you’re on your trip—Lucky Dog Auto Glass is here to help! We offer complete auto glass services, including windshield and door window repair and replacementand ADAS recalibration. We’re approved by all insurance providers and offer a guarantee on our work. Get a free estimate today—call us at (253) 569-9403 or fill out our online form

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