Summer is road trip season—the time of year when you pile everyone into the car, throw a dart at a map and start motoring in that direction until you get to your destination. There will be sights to see along the way, memories to be made on your journey and, of course, a postcard to collect from wherever you end up!
Unless you want your destination to be the waiting room of an auto body shop halfway between home and the place you want to be, however, it’s important you make sure your vehicle is road-ready before you gas up and go. Let’s take a quick look at an essential checklist of items you absolutely need to complete:
- First and foremost, make sure you’re investing a few dollars in an oil change in Basalt, CO. Unless you’ve had one in the last 1,000 miles or so, it’s important to get one before you set off on your road trip. The reason for this is simple: your vehicle is going to be put through its paces if you’re driving for hours and hours at a time. Giving it an oil change is going to make sure it’s in its best functional condition right from the start.
- Next, top off your fluids and test your lights! Making sure you have proper coolant and washer fluid is important when you consider the long stretch of road in front of you and the essential nature of these fluids. Also, knowing your lights are in full working order will keep you and other drivers safe on the road. Fluids and lights are cheap to replace, so don’t skimp out thinking you can safe a few bucks for souvenirs!
- Moving on, check all moving parts to make sure they’re ready to rock and roll. This means your windshield wipers and your belts, for the most part. If anything looks suspicious, mention something to your mechanic during your oil change in Basalt, CO and see what they have to say.
- The next item on your essential checklist has to be your tires. If you expect your tires to take you hundreds of miles this summer, do your due diligence in getting them road-ready. First, inspect the treads—if they’re low or oddly worn, it might be time for new tires, or you might need a rotation. Next, make sure they’re properly inflated to the appropriate PSI (found on your door panel or in your user manual). Finally, make sure you have a spare in the trunk or, at the very least, a patch kit!
- Finally, make sure all of your critical systems work. This includes your A/C (for those sweltering days), your radio, your blinkers and hazards, and your power windows and locks (if applicable). If everything functions appropriately, you’re good to go!
If you think you’re ready to hit the open road with just a sense of adventure and a full tank of gas, think again! Make sure you’re going through the checklist above before you start off on your journey.