Car Maintenance for Summer Road Trips
Updated: Jun 9
5 Tips on How to Ensure Safe Travels This Summer
Thinking of planning a road trip around the US, visiting national parks, or making a trip to the beach or lake? Here are a few things you will have to do to stay safe, have fun, and have a stress-free road trip.
Tip #1 - Check your tires
Check your tires ahead of time. Make sure your tire pressure, tread, and overall tire condition all check out. Be careful when it comes to potholes, miscellaneous items on the road, and road conditions. Bring a spare tire and make sure that your spare tire is in working condition. Temperature changes can also interfere with tire pressure so if you have a portable air compressor it would be a good idea to bring that, as well as some tools in case of an emergency.
Tip #2 - Change your oil, filters, and fluids
If your oil or fluid levels are low make sure that they all get changed and refilled before your trip. The six fluids that need to be topped off should be brake fluid, windshield fluid, oil, power steering fluid, radiator fluid, and transmission fluid. Make sure your filters are in good condition, if they aren't make sure they are replaced. Some filters that could be replaced are your engine air filter, oil filter, cabin air filter, and fuel filter.
"Summer heat accelerates the rate of fluid loss and resulting oxidation of battery components, which can leave you stranded without warning" – Steve Fox, Director of Automotive Services, AAA
Tip #3 - Check your brakes and alignment
Test your breaks by breaking to a stop. If you stop smoothly and feel no pulsation, then you are in the clear. If you feel a pulsation or hear a squeaky noise coming from your brakes then it's time to get them replaced. As for your alignment, you can tell if something is wrong if your steering wheel shifts to one side while you're driving, if your steering wheel isn't centered while driving, or if your steering wheel vibrates while you drive.
Tip #4 - Test your battery
You can easily take in your car battery to get tested at different auto care companies that offer it for FREE like O'Reilly Auto Parts, AutoZone, Advanced Auto Parts, and more. The summer heat puts a strain on car batteries and is the main cause of why a battery life only lasts for a set period of time.
Tip #5 - Do all maintenance AHEAD OF TIME
Lastly, don't leave any car maintenance to the last minute. Make sure you get everything done ahead of time because if something is seriously wrong with your car or you need an oil change, sometimes it can take hours to get done. Get everything done ahead of time and avoid being stressed or wasting valuable time.
Don’t forget the importance of car maintenance
Your summer trip will be more fun and memorable if you follow all of these rules to keep you, your family, and your car safe. If you need any of these services performed on your car, give us a call and we can help you!