Road-tripping is an undeclared summer tradition for trekking up north, down south, or heading west to see the other side of the country with friends or family. As incredibly idyllic as these seasonal road trips can be, vexations can come about that threaten to ruin the epic experience before you and fellow passengers reach your final destination.
Before you load up the car with luggage and supplies, hit the road, and cruise down the highway, you need to prep the vehicle for the journey that lies ahead. A preparation game plan is just as critical as a travel itinerary. For your consideration, we’ve compiled a list of leading actions to take to ensure a smooth, safe ride. Here’s how to prepare your vehicle for a summer road trip.
Ensure Routine Maintenance and Servicing
Annual car care is essential for the longevity of your vehicle, but a thorough check-up before a road trip is a must-do. If it’s been a while, be sure to leave enough time before your trip to take the car in for servicing or necessary repairs.
These preparatory maintenance procedures are the key, especially for longer mileage trips in the heat of summer and those to unfamiliar destinations off the traditional path. For a summer road trip to go off without a hitch, check your car’s lifeblood fluids, top off oils, replace older air filters and bulbs, and ensure belts and hoses are in good working order.
Double-Check Tire and Battery Function
When you head out on the highway for a sweet summertime vacation, nothing’s worse than a flat tire—or a dead as a doornail battery—that stops you in your tracks. Verifying the operational function of your tires and battery is how to best prepare your vehicle for a summer road trip.
Road trips are marathon races for cars, requiring solid shoes—a.k.a. tires—and an energy source—a.k.a. the battery. Check the battery to confirm secure hardware and clean cable connections. After that, check each tire thoroughly for its condition and pressure, including the spare tire.
Replace or Upgrade Essential Parts
Besides replacing basic accessories, consider upgrading or modifying core components with aftermarket parts for better performance and efficiency. A wide assortment of modifications are upgrades for road safetythat offer superior operational functioning. Other upgrades such as suspension systems or seating setups offer premier comfort without breaking the bank.
Before committing to mods, ensure you understand their value in the present and future. Your car works hard continually, and supplying everything it needs to keep running efficiently is a worthwhile investment for the long run.