Before heading out on a lengthy road trip the excitement builds and you get that familiar feeling that you are going to forget something, but that isn’t as bad as having to do some roadside maintenance on your vehicle. When you car is in prime condition then it is more dependable and efficient. That is why we have put together some basic maintenance procedures that you can head up yourself, other than checking wipers and fluid levels, to check if you should schedule any additional tune ups or replacement services.
The most common vehicle components to fail on a long trip are tyres. It is impossible to avoid all the possible road hazards that could lead to a flat, but you may be able to prevent an imminent blow-out. It is important to inspect the condition of each individual tyre. Be sure that there is enough tread (at least 3mm), the wear is even and your tyres are inflated correctly.
These checks could lead to a recommendation of balancing or rotating your tyres. It may also be time to have an alignment service, which should be done every 8-12 months. Also, make sure that your spare tyre is in excellent condition.
If you go to an auto technician you should get your suspension system examined for worn or damaged parts. Having your shocks or struts replaced will provide a considerable smoother, safer ride. Your brakes should be inspected and tested to determine the remaining lifespan of your pads. You will also want to know if it’s time to change your brake fluid as it gets contaminated over time.
Pack to be prepared. Stock your car with an emergency kit that includes: flashlight, blanket, first-aid supplies and some basic tools. Also take water and extra snacks, just in case.
Breaking down in the middle of a road trip is a pain that you don’t want to have to deal with. The best way forward is to plan for the worst and expect the best!