Well, the holidays are right around the corner, and, that means plenty of food, fun, and of course, traveling. While some will brave the airports and fly to their destinations, many more will opt to hit the road to see their loved ones. If there’s one thing about the holidays that’s consistent, it’s the fact that our wallets take a bit hit. We spend more on food, presents, and travel now than at any other time during the year, so, it’s smart to be proactive before you make that long holiday road trip.
3 Things Your Mechanic should Check before Your Holiday Road Trip
Now that summer is behind us, it’s time to take off for a long weekend or even a week or two and that means a lot of driving. When you get to your destination, chances are that you won’t permanently park your car. You’ll still run a few errands and perhaps, will go from one home to another to celebrate with family and friends. Then, you’ll have to pack up and hit the road to return home.
“Preparing for a road trip any time of the year is more than which hotel you’re going to stay at or what the gas prices may be. You know you need to check that your car is running well enough to make the long haul whether it’s 200 miles or 2,000. Everyone has an opinion of what you should check, including Consumer Reports and auto services. For most of us we know the services that are on our mechanics list but not on our priority list, because it may not be a problem now. But when you’re on the road, the last thing you want to be doing is trying to find a reputable mechanic and not wanting to waste your valuable vacation time stranded without wheels.” http://www.examiner.com/list/10-things-to-check-on-your-car-before-a-winter-road-trip Examiner.com
In fact, the average length of a road trip is more than two hundred miles during Thanksgiving, and, nearly three hundred miles during Christmas and New Year’s Eve, according to figures published by the United States Department of Transportation. That’s a whole lot of miles to tack onto the odometer, so, here are three things your mechanic should check before your holiday trip:
- Check the tire tread and brakes. Each tire’s tread should be checked to ensure that there’s a sufficient amount. In addition, the air pressure should be measured to make sure the tires are not under inflated or over inflated. If necessary, replace the tires and if not, have your mechanic check the alignment. Both the tires and the alignment need to be in good condition to handle a long road trip.
- Check and top-off fluid levels. Your mechanic should check the oil, brake fluid, coolant, and other fluids and fill these to their recommended level. If the oil is low, instead of just adding more, take the opportunity to have the oil changed and the refrigerant flushed.
- Check your lights and wipers. Ask you mechanic to check all the lights, both on the outside and inside of the vehicle. The headlights and taillights are of the utmost importance. In addition, the wipers should be checked and replaced, if necessary.
Also, you should check the battery to ensure that it’s not near the end of its life, and, be sure to pack an emergency road kit in your vehicle. This should at least contain a flashlight, flares, first aid kit, jumper cables, extra fluids, and comfort and food items, such as blankets and granola bars, as well as bottled water.
Until next time, be safe out there!
Owner, ABC Autotech