Long drives are stressful on your car. With the holidays a few days away, it’s time to check your vehicle and make sure it can handle a long road trip. Taking car of a few minor maintenance issues before you head out to your parent’s, or any other family member’s, house, can save you from being stuck on the side of the road or at a gas station.
1. Check your fluids.
Transmission, brake, windshield, antifreeze. All of these are vital fluids (Well, ok, maybe the windshield fluid isn’t vital, but it’s still necessary!) that ensure your car is functioning properly.
2. Check your tires’ air pressure.
Low air pressure causes the engine to work harder to turn the wheels. Making sure your tires are at the manufacturer’s recommended pressure helps your engine run as efficiently as possible, helping your gas mileage in the process.
3. Wash your windows.
Your visibility depends on your ability to see out of your car’s windows. If you have dirty, bug splattered windows, that affects your ability to see what’s coming.
4. Change your oil.
If it’s getting close to time to change your oil, go ahead and do it before you leave. Long hours on the road are taxing on an engine. If it’s not close to time, check the oil levels to make sure you aren’t a quart or 2 low.
5. Check your air filter.
A plentiful supply of fresh air is vital to your engine’s efficiency. If it’s time for a new air filter, don’t wait until you get back, go ahead and get a new one.
6. Check your lights.
You definitely don’t want to be out at night with a headlight or a brake light out, for a multitude of reasons. Police will give you a ticket if they spot you and it hampers your ability to see where you are going and for other drivers to see you.
We’re coming up on 2 of the biggest travel holidays of the year, Thanksgiving and Christmas. I hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday season. As always, find us on Facebook and tell us your car tips for long drives.