How Should You Prepare Your Car for a Road Trip?

Posted on by Defensive Driving Team | in Driving and Safety Tips, Road Trips

shutterstock_536315926

Road trips are a great way to have a fun, low-key vacation, but even though there is less preparation involved—all you need is a car and the road—you will have to first make sure that your car will be up to the task. You may think that this is an unnecessary step, especially if you have a relatively new car, but driving long distances can be taxing on a vehicle, and if it is not in tip top shape, you could end up with a disaster in the middle of nowhere. Here are some of the best ways to prepare your car for a road trip. As always, for more tips like these, as well as safety, snacks, games, and music on the road, check out our Road Trip Planner.

check the tire pressure

Many people neglect this important feature of the car, but with long stretches of road to come, it is essential that your tires are in good shape. A blowout at freeway speeds can be very dangerous. Check the air pressure using a pressure gauge, and compare it with your car’s instruction manual, to make sure that it is not too high or too low.

check the tread on your tires

You should also check the tread depth on your tires. You can do this by using a gauge, or even just performing the “penny test.” If you put a penny in the grooves of the tread and you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, you need new tires. You might just need to get your tires rotated before you go, so check to see the last time that you did that.

check the spare

You cannot prepare for everything, and if you get a flat tire somewhere on the road, possibly some hours away from civilization, you will be in need of a healthy spare tire. Make sure that yours is in good condition.

check the air filter

When was the last time you had your air filter changed? If you cannot remember, the chances are you should get a new one. They are relatively inexpensive and easy to change, so it is better to be safe than sorry.

fill the tank

It might seem obvious, but having a full tank might just be the most important way to start a road trip. Even though you can usually fill up on the road, it will give you one less thing to worry about if you do it the night before.

create an emergency kit

You can be as prepared as possible, but sometimes breakdowns and other annoyances still happen. If you put together a sort of survival kit, you will be much better prepared to handle them. Don’t forget to include essential tools, a flashlight, an emergency radio or phone, a first aid kit, some nonperishable food, plenty of water, and a blanket.

take it to a mechanic

Especially if you have an older car, and you are not an expert on car maintenance, it is a good idea to have a professional check over your car before you go. They can fix all of the above, as well as change your oil and other important fluids. They can advise you on whether or not your car will make a long journey in one piece.

Don’t forget to enter for a chance to win a Blu-Ray player in our Halloween giveaway–visit Facebook for the details!

|

Customer Reviews

Defensivedriving.com has a ShopperApproved rating of 4.7 based on 80888 ratings and reviews.

Derek TX, United States
simple and fast
Aaron TX, United States
Two thumbs up!!!
Hope United States
Easy process
Jere
Great
Lindsay
easy and self explanatory
Francisco
best price
Garrett
Clear and simple explanations of the differences between the video and text course. Quick and straightforward registration and payment process.
Crystal
Very clear and easy to follow
Allyson
Quick and easy registration
James
quick
Nicholas
Awesome!
Ty
Very Easy to Register
John United States
It's a good resource
Haley TX, United States
It was simple, and easy to get my ticket from going on my record!
Bonnita United States
Great website
Baylee TX, United States
It's easy and self-explanatory
Timothy
Very Good!!
stephen
Easy to find and to work with. Site is very good.
Amanda
Easy to use
johnny
very professional
Allen
easy and fast
Michelle
Wonderful course
Baleigh TX, United States
very quick and easy to start the process and love the fact that you can complete at anytime on a desktop, or mobile device.
Rolando
really fast and smooth. love it
Tavia United States
Easy
Miriam
Quick and easy
Andres
easy to follow
Frank
Super quick and easy!
Manuel
Really easy and cheap
DIEGO
Easy and convenient
Gabriela
Easy to set up.
Harris
Easy to register.
Jonathan
Great!
Edgar
easy and clear
See all reviews on shopperApproved.com
Why DefensiveDriving.com
  • 20 Years in Business
  • Over 2 Million Customers Served
  • Highest Possible Better Business Bureau Rating
  • Award Winning Course