If you have already been on a road trip, you probably know what kind of preparation is necessary so that you can make the most of the experience. You may have been adequately prepared, or perhaps you realized at some point that you hadn’t really done everything you should have. If this is the case, you will probably never make the same mistake again.
On the other hand, if you have never been on a road trip or never had any problems with your car, you might require a check-list that will help you organize a trip with no hiccups. Every responsible driver needs to minimize the chances of their car breaking down due to poor maintenance, which is why it is a good idea to go through this list well before you embark on your trip.
Check the Cabin and Air Filters
The cabin and air filters get dirty and clogged quite easily, especially if most of your driving takes place in an area with polluted air. The fact that your filters are not functioning well does not only affect the quality of air in the cabin, but it also has an impact on engine performance. This, in turn, increases fuel consumption, which means your expenses increase.
How often you change the filters depends on many factors, but doing it at least once a year is a must. Naturally, if you drive a lot or plan to go on a longer trip, you should change them often. When it comes to the cabin filters, their primary role is to keep harmful substances away from the vehicle, thus helping the heat and air conditioning systems function correctly.
Check the Car Fluids
A road trip requires your car to be in excellent condition, so that it can sustain all the pressure that comes with driving for extended periods of time or in areas with extreme temperatures. To make sure your car can handle such a trip, you need to inspect car fluids, such as the engine coolant and various oils.
The coolant will prevent your car from overheating easily, while transmission fluid allows you to shift gears smoothly and without any problems. Brake fluid is vital, since it keeps the brakes in perfect condition, which is extremely important and can potentially save your life. Investing in top quality engine oil, such as any of the renowned Castrol oils, is always a smart idea, but make sure you get the right one for your car. Finally, windshield washer fluid is important in case of adverse weather conditions.
Check the Tires
The quality and state of your tires have a significant impact on safety. The hotter the weather, the harder the tires, which is why you need to choose the right kind for your road trip. Naturally, when the weather grows colder, the pressure can drop quickly, so be prepared to check tire pressure and refill the tires if necessary.
Another critical issue is the tread of your tires, because you need enough tread to have a safe ride. If you are not sure about the state of your tires, visit the nearest expert and have them checked. Tires are one of the most important elements when it comes to having a safe and trouble-free trip and you should confirm that you don’t need to replace them before the trip. It goes without saying that you should have a functioning spare tire and car jack with you inside the vehicle before leaving on a road trip.
Check the Car Battery
You can count on your car battery to last between three and six years, which means you need to know how long you have had the one currently in your car. If you don’t know how to check the state of your battery, visit the nearest auto mechanic.
If you’d like to clean your battery and help it run a bit longer, you can remove it and deal with any signs of corrosion. Just make sure that the battery is completely dry before you reattach the terminals.
Have an Emergency Kit
Having an emergency kit in your car is very necessary, especially if you are planning a long road trip. Such a kit needs to contain jumper cables, first aid supplies, car shades for parking in the sun or any other item that might help you deal with various emergencies.
You should also be aware that even though you have taken appropriate measures of precaution, some problems with your car still may occur. Your job is to minimize all possible risks so that you and your passengers will have a great time on your road trip.Looking for a professional to assess your car? Try using EZBZ, the free online concierge service. We’ll connect you with the best automotive professionals in your area. Download the app and try it out today - it’s free, quick, and easy.