You’re feeling ready for a road trip!
You have the need to drive those long highways, windows down with the wind racing through your hair. You have the jerky, and all of the music playlists ready, but have you prepared your car for the long journey ahead? We have prepared a list of tips to prepare your car for the road trip of your dreams.
Tip 1: Inspect your car’s exterior.
Look over your all of your windows and windshield to make sure there are no cracks in the glass. The last thing you need to worry about is replacing an entire windshield while stuck on the side of a highway in the middle of a rainy night.
Inspect your windshield wiper blades. Windshield wiper blades need to be replaced every six months. If the blades are dry and cracked, it is time to replace them. You can test the windshield wipers effectiveness with windshield washer fluid.
Tip 2: Check the air pressure in your tires!
Driving with under inflated tires can be very dangerous. Your tires could blow out, and your life and other lives around you could be in jeopardy. Also, under inflated tires are bad on your gas mileage! You can check the air pressure in your tires at most gas stations for a low price, and some of them even offer free services. On your tires should be the tire’s pressure rating when you use the tire gauge. Check all four tires and refill them until they reach the tire’s pressure rating.
Also with your tires, make sure you check for any balding spots along the tire tread. This is another easy way for tires to blow out! You can use the penny test to ensure the tire’s condition isn’t for the worst.
Place a penny upside down in the groove of the tire to see how much of Abraham Lincoln’s head you can actually view. If you can see further down Abraham Lincoln’s forehead, the tires need to be replaced immediately.
Tip 3: Test your headlights, and signal lights.
The last thing you need to worry about is being out in the middle of no where with two dead headlight bulbs at 2 A.M in the morning. Check your headlights and signal lights on your drive way after dusk. You can have someone help you verify this as you test each light signal, your brake lights, and even your headlights. Its important your car is safe before driving it onto roads with no street lights for miles and miles.
Tip 4: Have your oil checked!
Using the dipstick, remove it from the oil, wipe it off and reinsert it again. You can check the oil amount by removing the stick once more and finding the height of where the oil reached. If the oil reached the low notch on the dipstick, it is time for more oil for your car. You can do an oil change yourself, or you can simply take it to a mechanic for your oil change.
Tip 5: Verify your vehicle documents aren’t expired.
Check your documents to ensure you’re driving legally. Make sure your license plate isn’t expired and make sure your registration is up to date. You want to make sure you are ready for any scenario in the future and not having any documentation is a big “no no”. Your car can be impounded and you can even be ticketed or fined. Also, make sure you have all of your Driver’s insurance paperwork together with you during your first road trip. It is better to be safe than sorry.
Tip 6: Emergency essentials
In worst case scenarios its always best to ensure your safety and health is guaranteed. Pack a first aid kit, a flashlight, extra batteries, a portable phone charger, an emergency tire jack and extra tire, tire iron, jumper cables, rain gear, road flares, a can of gasoline, extra water bottles, a GPS and blankets in your trunk. If you are prepared, the likelihood of having a successful solution to any worst case scenario will be there.
There you have it, 6 tips on how to prepare your car for a road trip. Ensuring that your car will be the safe option to living out your dream is very important, so educate yourself on your car’s maintenance and functionality. Drive safely!
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