There is something special about taking road trips during summer in the United States. There are numerous sights, people, and locations that make an Indian road trip inspiring. If you have also been inspired to take a trip cross-country, you need to understand that preparation is key. Few things are better than a long road trip, but poor planning and lack of car maintenance can quickly end the fun.
To ensure your road trip this summer is as smooth as possible, you’ll want to check these items beforehand:
1. The Brakes
The braking system is one of the most vital safety features of a vehicle. However, it can overheat and put you at risk, especially if it has not been serviced in a while. So, ensure the brakes are in the best condition before you hop in the car. You never know what type of conditions you might encounter during the trip, from animals crossing the highway to stop-and-go city traffic.
Signs that your braking system needs maintenance include squeaking, grinding, sponginess when you apply the brake pedal, and steering-wheel shaking.
2. The Tires
To help avoid a flat-tire disaster during your trip, you’ll want to call a skilled technician to check the tires and alignment. Among other things, a tire check entails:
(i) Tire Pressure- An over or under-inflated tire can cause a wide array of issues including premature wear, a bumpy ride, overheating, and even tire blowout. As such, it’s important to ensure the tire pressure is set to what is recommended on the vehicle owner’s manual.
(ii) Tire Wear- Are the tire wear patterns uneven? Is the tread in ideal condition? You cannot depend on the tires if the tread is not deep enough or they’re worn to a point they can’t gain traction.
A proper tire inspection can also reveal misalignment, which takes a toll on both the tires and fuel efficiency.
3. The Fluids
You will want to check all fluids, including oil, brake fluid, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, windshield washer fluid, and antifreeze. Check the oil level and the date or mileage for when you are due for an oil change. If you are close to these figures, you need to change the oil before you embark on your long trip.
4. The Lighting
A car’s headlights are obviously the source of light when driving at night. However, there are several bulbs inside the cabin that need occasional inspection and replacement. There’s nothing more irritating than trying to use an interior light only to discover it’s not working. Lights are usually easy to replace, and most auto shops like Absolute Car Care have a wide array of replacements, thus saving you a trip to the dealer.
With these tips, your vehicle should be ready for that exhilarating road trip.