Everybody enjoys an excellent road trip, but if you fall short in preparing your car for a road trip it can lead to catastrophe. Don’t be misled into believing that your brand-new car doesn’t need to be examined, a quick check can mean the difference in a carefree drive or a roadside breakdown. We’ve put together a short car maintenance checklist of the top points you must check prior to your next road trip.
Is My Vehicle Ready For A Road Trip?
Just because your vehicle is new that doesn’t indicate it’s ready for a long trip. If your automobile is past due for an oil change, has a tire with an air leak, or has a burned-out taillight then you absolutely need to get those items taken care of prior to imagining the open road. In addition, if you don’t currently have an emergency kit in your automobile, you must get one prior to your next journey. Despite all the journey planning in the world, things can break. A bit of prevention can help immensely when presented with unforeseen automobile troubles.
Safety List for Road Trips
Okay, you’re ready to check your automobile with a fine-tooth comb, but where do you start? Your road trip checklist should focus on 3 main sections: Fluids, Wheels and Tires, and Maintenance. While not an extensive checklist, if you thoroughly examine these areas your possibility of a continuous journey get better.
Engine Oil – As we discussed above, you’ll want to make certain that the engine oil has been recently changed.
Transmission Fluid – Make sure to consult your owner’s manual to see the intervals at which to have it changed. If it’s past due, you’ll need to change it.
Radiator fluid – Make certain that your antifreeze is completely full for optimum performance and check your owner’s manual to see if it needs to be changed.
Brake Fluid – Having the ability to brake effectively can be the difference between a collision or not. If you are unclear, get it inspected
Wiper Fluid – If you’re likely to be driving a long distance you’re most likely to strike some insects or various other roadway debris. Make sure your wiper fluid container is completely full to get the crud off. Wiper fluid is pointless without great wipers, so replace your wipers while you’re at it.
Tires & Treads
Tread – See to it there are no bald spots and that you have plenty of tread left. Double-check for any punctures that need to be dealt with. If they can not be fixed, change them.
Air Pressure – See to it that your tires are inflated to the correct pressure and that they all have equal pressure in each tire.
Rotation – Make certain that your tires don’t need to be rotated. Tires that aren’t balanced/rotated properly can wear unevenly and have a frustrating vibration.
Spare Tire – Whatever you examine on your main tires, do it for your spare too.
General Maintenance Issues
Light Bulbs – Burned out headlights and taillamps can be a safety hazard, so see to it that they function normally. While you are at it, examine your turn signal lights and parking lights. You could also update to LED light bulbs for brighter light and lower power consumption
Air Filter – If you’re like most of us, your air filter needed changing years ago. It’s simple to do, isn’t really pricey, and can aid with better gas mileage.
Belts and Hoses – If you aren’t a mechanic, this might be a little daunting however it can actually be fairly straightforward. First thing is to look for cracks in the hoses, after that press the hoses to see if they seem brittle. Hoses should feel really rubbery, if they feel really breakable or have fractures you should replace them. Look for leaks on your hoses, particularly where they attach to other components. Finally, checks the belts to see to it that they aren’t loosely affixed or have missing notches. A damaged belt and/or hose can quickly wreck your journey and your engine.
Battery – See to it that the battery terminals are not worn away and that the +/- connections are tightened. If your car starts slowly you might need to replace your battery.
Brakes – Having the ability to break your automobile effectively is key in avoiding crashes. Changing your brake fluid, replacing the brake pads, and even getting new brake rotors could be essential to have a risk-free automobile for your trip.
Test Drive Your Car Before the Road Trip
You know your vehicle much better than any person. Take it out for a quick spin to see if something feels off. This isn’t a pleasure cruise so shut off the radio and concentrate. Does your car pull to one side under heavy braking? Does your AC blow cold air? If something feels off, you should absolutely have an expert take a look at it.
Schedule Vehicle Road Trip Maintenance Today
Schedule your car’s road trip maintenance service at Shawnee Mission Kia. We are your trusted source for all maintenance needs in the Kansas City, MO area. Book an appointment online, in-person, or by phone today. Our factory-trained technicians are ready to serve you and your car or truck!
Thank you so much to Luke Johnson, who was my service rep. He was very courteous and professional. He was able to get my service done quickly and everything was done that needed to be done plus checked out a few of my concerns. I would recommend Shawnee Mission Kia to anyone.