7 Ways To Prepare Your Car For A Long Trip This Summer

28 May 2017
 Categories: , Blog

Traveling long distances during the summer with your family can make for a great family vacation. However, if your car breaks down, your family's memories could be tainted with the time spent on the side of the road waiting for roadside assistance. To make sure your car is ready for the distance, here are a few preparation steps you can take.  

  1. Review the owner's manual. Even if you have had your car for awhile, there is still something to be learned from the manual. The manual will contain information on how to treat certain emergency situations with the car.  

  2. Check the hoses and belts. Ideally, the hoses should be firm and not soft or squishy. If they are, now is the time to change them. Frayed or cracked belts also need replacement. When replacing them, ensure they are snugly connected in the correct spots.  

  3. Cover the headlights. During the trip, bugs will start to collect and clog your headlights and make it challenging for you to see. To avoid this, use a protective sheet specifically designed for the headlights to protect them.  

  4. Clean the battery terminals. Over time, the battery terminals can begin to corrode. The corrosion impacts the functionality of the battery. Cleaning it now will not only help to remove the corrosion, but help you judge whether or not you need to completely replace the terminals.  

  5. Check the fluid levels. Fluids, such as the engine oil, coolant, and transmission fluid, play a major role in keeping your car functional. During the road trip, running out of the appropriate fluid could mean a breakdown. The levels should be filled according to the recommended amounts from the manufacturer.  

  6. Inspect the spare tire. Many car owners do not think of the spare tire until it is too late. You need to ensure it is in good condition now. In addition to checking the tire, you also need to verify that the jack and tire iron are in the car and in good condition. 

  7. Pack a car survival kit. Your kit should include items that can get your car running in the case it breaks down. For instance, an electric charger wire, pliers, and hammer could be necessary.  

A local auto repair shop can further inspect your car and ensure it is ready for the road. He or she can also make suggestions about other steps you can take to prepare your car.