Many people find it uncomfortable traveling with their cars especially if the car is a little bit old or has a high mileage. However having a car breakdown a long way from home and your destination can cause a lot of emotional worries for you, this is why you need to prepare your car for travelling before the actual travel date arrives.
2 – 4 Weeks Before You Go
Get major repairs done.
If your car needs any repair or there are big maintenance items coning up, try to get them done at least one month before you go. This will enough time for repair related problems to show.
Check the coolant.
Depending on how warm or cold your destination is, check the coolant’s mixture of antifreeze to ensure your car is adequately protected. Change the coolant if it requires changing.
Check the tires.
Do a tire check to be sure your tires are inflated to the proper pressure. Low pressure can lead to extra heat buildup and cause a blowout at high speeds. You can use the owner manual to guide you. Also check the tire thread. Change the tires if your checks require that you get a new one.
Check the spare tire.
Keep your spare tire fully inflated and keep the tire changing tools like jack, wrench etc handy. If your car uses wheel locks, keep the adapter for the lock-nut safe.
Check the glovebox.
Be sure to keep your owner’s manual, proof of insurance, and registration handy. If your manual is missing, try ordering a replacement before you go. You can also go online to the manufacturer’s site to download the PDF format. Make sure your registration and insurance will not expire on your trip. You may keep extra copies of your car’s paperwork in your wallet, in case the car is stolen.
One Week Before You Go
Get any scheduled maintenance done. Change your oil if you feel that your car is due for an oil change. A good precaution to take is to get some replacement car keys in case there are some unforeseen circumstances.
Check the tires again.
Check to see if the tire pressures are about the same as the last time you checked. Also clean your car and remove unnecessary stuff.
Check the air filter.
If your air filter is clogged you cannot economize your fuel. If the current air filter has been in the car for over 10,000 miles, then clean it or change it. It’s cheap and easy to change.
Buy a road atlas.
Make sure your road Atlas is the current one. This could add spice to your journey of you ditch some miles of expressway for unbeaten paths.
Join a roadside assistance program.
Roadside assistance could come in handy so join one of you don’t already have. Roadside assistance helps tow your car if it breaks down, change your flat tire, jump-start the car if the battery dies, help you open your doors if you get locked out and provide you with gas if you run out. You may not even have to pay for the first time you use their services. They could also offer discounts at many roadside motels and restaurants.
One Day Before You Go
Wash and vacuum your car. Before you pack, give your car a good scrubbing and vacuuming. Check the tire pressure again and change it if need be. Then fill your gas tank.
On the day of your travel, make sure you packed the right things. Load evenly and carefully, then relax and enjoy your trip.