Summer is winding down, but there's still time to sneak in a final family vacay! And whether you’re driving a few towns or a few states over, it’s a good idea to check to make sure your car is in tip-top shape. This will help save you time, money and potential headaches.
Here are a few simple tips to help get your car road trip ready.
Simple car maintenance now can help avoid a big road bump later (see what I did there?!) Here are the top things to check before hitting the road:
- Check the condition and air pressure in your tires
- Test your wipers and wiper fluid
- Make sure your headlights and taillights are working
- Change your oil and filter
- Clean your car, inside and out
Pack the essentials
As a young driver, my dad had my trunk choc-full of, what I thought to be, MacGyver-like tools. And sure enough, those “unnecessary items” always ended up saving me. Big time. Here’s a sampling of what papa Steve packed for me:
- Spare tire, tire iron and car jack
- Spare car key
- Spark plugs
- Small garbage bags to keep your car neat
- Owner’s manual and insurance cards
- Tow rope
- Blankets and an extra coat
Other tips for a successful road trip
Once you have your car maintenanced and packed, keep these tips in mind when you’re on the road.
- Use cruise control – steady speeds will help your gas mileage
- If you’re tired, pull over and rest. Don’t try to muscle through with caffeine!
- Put down your phone. Never text and drive, and use hands-free when making calls.
We’d love to hear from you – what road trip tips do you have? Or share your favorite road trip memory in the comments below!