26 Feb TIPS TO PREPARE YOUR CAR FOR A LONG ROAD TRIP
Road trips are definitely always a good time, the open road, fresh air, friends, family and new places, who wouldn’t want that? However, before you set off anywhere, you need to prepare your vehicle, nothing could be worse or potentially more scary than have your car break down hundreds of miles from home.
So, what exactly do you need to check before you embark on your road trip?
- An exterior overview of the car’s condition
Look over the external of the vehicle for signs of issues. A general inspection is a great way to identify any issues you might otherwise miss. Check the condition of the windows, the state of the vehicle’s body, and look for anything that stands out as unusual; worn out wipers, tires, both head and tail lights etc.
- An under-the-bonnet check is second on the list.
You have to check the fluid levels first, as it is one of the main concerns motorists need to be aware of and don’t check often enough. If your coolant and oil levels are low, top up and ensure you might have a little leak somewhere.
Make sure to also check the brake fluid, if this level is too low, your car is not safe to drive.
- Check for under the car leaks
Following the under-the-hood checks of the fluid levels, it is a good idea to check for any leaks from various components and hoses underneath your car.
If you see some oil spots or coolant, which has a shiny texture and looks similar to oil, on the floor of your parking structure, have your vehicle checked by a technician.
- Check that all belts are working and in good condition (both safety belts and belts that run the vehicle)
While checking underneath your vehicle, examine the drive belt for any cracks. If your drive belt is damaged or worn out, you may have a total engine shutdown.
You will not be able to charge the battery, and your vehicle will start overheating because the water pump is run by the belt. This is very important – if anything happens to this belt, you will be stuck within a few kilometres.
If you are planning to be on the road for a long time, and if you have covered many kilometres since your last service, now is a good time to check.
- Check on your spare wheel
A simple yet essential check that you can do yourself before tackling any long journey is checking to see if your spare tyre, the jack, and spanner, are all present in your vehicle and if they are working properly.
- All your legal documents in order
Check whether you have your driving license, insurance covered and any fees you may have to pay along the way such as entry to game parks etc.
You’re all ready to go! Have an amazing road trip and be safe! Remember, if you’re new to the road, don’t be in a rush to know it!