Road trips, I love them. Roadtrippers is probably, without a doubt, my most visited travel site. Last year I was able to take quite a few of them and while most of them were in-state, they still helped to feed my wanderlust. Sadly, I had so many closer destinations that I wasn’t able to get them all documented here. This year though, I plan to do better about travel tales.
When it comes to “getting away from it all,” many road trippers opt to enjoy the many amazing, closer-to-home sights from the comfort of their own vehicles. There is nothing like the feeling of the open road.
When planning a getaway, remember that road trips can be tough on cars, and few things can turn a road trip into a nightmare quicker than breaking down in the middle of nowhere.
So, before you load the car and take off, make sure that your vehicle is in tip-top condition.
A pre-trip inspection as part of an overall maintenance program can give you peace of mind and help prevent costly repairs.
Inspect and repair, if needed, the following:
- Radiator and cooling system, including water pump, fan and thermostat
- Brakes, brake pads and brake linings
- Battery and cables
- Belts and hoses
- Engine oil and oil filter
- Wiper blades and washer fluid
- Tire pressure and overall tire condition (including the spare).
- Most importantly, don’t leave on a long trip with your car’s “Check Engine” light on.
The Check Engine light appears when your vehicle’s On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) computer detects a problem. According to several state Air Pollution Control Districts, the Check Engine light is designed to limit air pollution, as well as alert drivers to a condition that can waste fuel, shorten engine life and result in potentially expensive repairs.
If the light does come on, a quick check of your vehicle’s service manual can often identify the problem and a course of action.
Those who take their car to a mechanic often find that technicians use a diagnostic tool to scan their vehicle and access trouble codes at a cost of $55 to $100.
Tracy @ Ascending Butterfly says
Since I do not drive I get the joy of being a passenger on road trips! Napping, Reading, Headphones/Music are on my Road Trip agenda! 🙂
We are about to take our big yearly road trip. I definitely need to make sure our car is in tip top shape.
Stacie @ Divine Lifestyle says
We aren’t planning a road trip this year, but we took a great one last year. My husband went over our car from bumper to bumper before we left.
We try to take a road trip every summer. Making sure it’s in great condition before hand is a must for any successful trip. Last year we drove to Canada and thankfully didn’t have any issues thanks to my husband carefully going over the car inspection checklist before we left.
Kita Bryant says
My husband loves getting our car ready for the road. He drives, so I let him do his thing. Great advice!
I think it’s the most important thing about a road trip. This is def. the one time you want to be proactive.
Dawn McAlexander says
Thanks for reminding me that I need an oil change in my car. I take several road trips per year and I need to keep my car up.
Carol Cassara says
It’s really important to make sure that you check everything that’s needed to be checked in your care before you leave for or plan a roadtrip. This is a pretty cool guide for that.
I love to road trip! My family has six kids, so it’s the only way we traveled as kids. I need to plan another trip for this summer with my own kiddos.
Jocelyn @ Hip Mama's Place says
We take road trips all the time and we love it! One thing my husband and I make sure to do before any road trip is to make sure our family car is fully conditioned before we take any road trip. Safety is first in my family 😉