Will you be hitting the open road on a fun road trip? Check out this Road Trip Checkups: What to Do Before You Hit the Open Road
Road Trip Checkups: What to Do Before You Hit the Open Road
Going on a road trip is always a fun adventure, but it’s essential to ensure your car is ready for the journey. There are a few checkups you should do before hitting the open road. We’ll discuss each one in this blog post and show you how to complete them. By following these tips, you can ensure that your car is in good condition and that you’ll have a safe and enjoyable trip!
1) Check the oil level and condition
One of the most important things to check before going on a road trip is the oil level and condition. If your car runs out of oil while you’re driving, it can cause serious damage. To check the oil level, locate the dipstick and pull it out. Wipe it off with a cloth, then reinsert it all the way back in. Remove it again and look at where the oil line is. If the line is below or at Full, your car has enough oil. If not, add more ( consult your owner’s manual for proper instructions).
To check the condition of the oil, look at its color. It should be light brown or golden-colored. If it’s black or sludgy, the oil needs to be changed.
2) Inspect the tires
Another essential thing to check before a road trip is your tires. All four of them should have enough tread and be inflated to the proper pressure ( you can find this information in your owner’s manual or on a sticker inside the driver’s door). To check the tread, use a penny. Insert it upside down into the tread groove. If you can see all of Lincoln’s head, your tread depth is less than and you need new tires. If not, your tires are still good to go!
Inflating your tires is easy to do and only takes a few minutes. You’ll need an air compressor and either a tire gauge or an inflation chart ( these are usually located near the air hose at gas stations). Check each tire’s pressure and add air if needed. Don’t overinflate, though!
When you are looking for a new set of wheels, consider reading a guide to the best tires to help you decide.
3) Check the brakes
The brakes are another important part of your car to check before a road trip. Apply pressure to the brake pedal and hold it down to test them. The car should stop quickly. There might be a problem with the brake pads or fluid if it doesn’t. Get them checked out by a mechanic as soon as possible.
Also, make sure you know how to use your parking brake! This is an important safety feature that can prevent your car from rolling away if you’re parked on an incline.
4) Test the lights
All of your car’s lights should be in working order before you set out on a road trip. This includes the headlights, taillights, brake lights, and turn signals. To test them, turn on the car and then turn on each light individually. Next, walk around to the back and front of the car to ensure they’re all working. If any are burned out, replace them with new bulbs ( you can find these at most auto parts stores).
5) Fill up on fuel
One of the most important things to remember when going on a road trip is always to fill up your tank with gasoline. You don’t want to run out of gas in the middle of nowhere! So make sure you know where the nearest gas station is and plan accordingly.
6) Pack an emergency kit
Even if you’re just going on a short road trip, it’s always a good idea to pack an emergency kit. This should include a first-aid kit, flares or reflectors, jumper cables, a flashlight, and a quart of oil. You might also want to add some snacks and drinks, just in case you get stranded somewhere.
7) Check the belts and hoses
Your car’s belts and hoses should also be checked before a road trip. The belts are what power your engine, so it’s important to make sure they’re in good condition. The hoses carry coolant and fuel, so they can easily become brittle and crack over time. Have a mechanic check them for you to make sure they’re in good shape.
8) Clean the car
It’s always a good idea to clean your car before taking it on a road trip. This will help keep it in good condition and make it more pleasant to drive. Wipe down the dashboard, seats, and doors with a damp cloth. Next, vacuum the carpets and empty out any trash or debris that might have accumulated. It’s also a good idea to wash the exterior of the car while you’re at it!
Follow these tips to ensure your car is ready for your next road trip!