Summer is here and it’s important that your car is prepared for any spur of the moment road trips. Before you hit the road it’s important to pre-check your vehicle to make sure it is in prime condition for a weekend road trip. Whether you’re driving a short distance or across the country, try these tips to make sure that your car is prepared for your next adventure.
A safety inspection should cover the following things:
Fluids & Filters
Check the fluids. This includes oil, power steering fluid, transmission fluid, antifreeze, windshield washer fluid and brake fluid. Check your oil levels and the date/mileage for when you’re due for an oil change. If you’re close to your date/mileage, it’s recommended to change oil before embarking on your road trip. Dirty air filters can waste fuel and cause the engine to lose power. A plentiful supply of clean air to your engine improves the vehicle’s performance and efficiency. This will help you avoid an accident or an unnecessary breakdown.
Check to make sure all lights are working. This includes brake lights, turn signals, headlights, and reverse lights. Save yourself from potentially being pulled over by the police because of an out light. Not only is it safer for you, working vehicle lights are safer for everyone on the road.
Tire Pressure & Tread
Check your tires. Under inflated tires reduce a vehicle’s fuel economy, and uneven tire wear indicates a need for wheel alignment. Tires should also be checked for bulges and bald spots. If the tires are showing any tread wear, replace the tires. Make sure all of your tires are inflated to proper tire pressure.The pressure marked on the side of the tire is the max, which must not be exceeded. Also, don’t forget to check the pressure of your spare tire. This is often neglected. Not doing so will turn a bad time into a worse one if the spare is unusable.
Hoses & Belts
Check the hoses and belts. They are critical in the proper function of the electrical system, air conditioning, power steering and the cooling system. Ensuring the hoses and belts in your vehicle are at peak performing levels. This will keep your family on the road and out of the local repair shop.
Make sure the battery connection is clean, tight, and corrosion-free. If the battery in your car is more than a couple years old, check that the terminals are corrosion-free and the positive and negative leads are tight. Batteries typically last three-five years.
Check your engine. Make sure it is delivering the best balance of power and fuel economy and producing the lowest level of emissions.
Summer vacation season is upon us! A full inspection of your vehicle will ease your mind and help make your road trip safer. Stop in at any of the LaFontaine locations for your vehicle inspection before you venture on your road trip.
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