I will admit that I haven’t always been an expert on car maintenance, often missing the important things to check in your car before a road trip. While still not a specialist, after a little research and some advice from my Dad, I have learned a few tips to put on your checklist before heading out on the open road. Keep yourself safe and never forget these crucial things to check in your car before a road trip!
Often neglected, tire pressure is definitely one of the top things to check in your car before a road trip. The last thing you want is to be in the middle of nowhere with a flat tire! While not always preventable, if you make sure to check that your tire pressure is within recommended range before heading out you could avoid issues while driving. While you’re at it, don’t forget to check your spare tire pressure too!
Making sure your oil, coolant and brake fluid levels are sufficient could help you avoid a breakdown or accident while you're on the open road. If your levels are out of proper range, you could also be doing quite a bit of damage to your car… I don’t know about you, but I would much rather spend my money on shopping for a cute new pair of shoes than on car repairs!
Not being able to properly see out of your windows is a surefire way to cause an accident! In the harsh winter months, I have been guilty of improperly clearing snow off of my car before driving… Now that I have a little more knowledge, I have come to realize how important it is to be able to see out of all of my vehicle windows. Before setting out on your trip make sure that your windshield is free of cracks and that you can easily see out of all of your windows and mirrors to keep yourself as safe as possible! Oh, and don’t forget to fill up your windshield washer fluid too!
Call on one of your friends to help you with this one. To make sure all your lights are working properly, turn on each light and signal and ask your friend if things are as they should be! Having lights burnt out could put you at risk for a hefty ticket and even worse – an accident!
Another important tip is to check the weather and traffic reports on the days that you are going to be traveling. Having an idea of what conditions you will be driving in and into puts you in a good position for your trip. Knowing the weather and traffic conditions can also help you plan for more time, if needed, which may prevent frustration when you are moving at a snail pace!
Just as dangerous as low tire pressure, worn tires can cause blowouts on a long road trip! Driving on tires that are worn can also cause you to use more fuel when driving, which just adds to the cost of your trip. To avoid getting yourself in a pickle, put safety first and use a tire tread gauge to make sure your treads are where they should be and make sure you replace any worn tires before your trip.
As someone who always likes to be prepared, I have a permanent emergency kit in the trunk of my vehicle. Check that your emergency kit has all of the important equipment, such as an up-to-date map, spare tire(s), cellphone charger, flashlight, batteries and full medical kit before venturing out. Pay attention to the weather as well to make sure you have everything you need for the season you are driving in.
Road trips are a blast and definitely one of my favourite things to do in the summer months, especially when I have my playlist going! Have fun and be a safe road warrior by always keeping these 7 things on your checklist before any trip. How do you prepare for a road trip?
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