Road trips are some of the most fun and rewarding experiences, and whether you are taking your family, going solo, or preparing for an adventure with your entourage, you certainly want to have a road trip checked off your bucket list at some point in your life.
However, road trips require some planning and preparation, and as much as the idea might sound appealing and wild, you can’t just get up and leave your home without taking care of a few necessities first. Let’s assume that you have already determined the nature and destination of your voyage, and the only thing left to do is to make sure your car is in mint condition, ready to take on any challenge. Here are the crucial steps to preparing your car for a road trip of a lifetime.
Complete any major repairs
From heavy-duty engine repairs to replacing the hubcap on one of your rear wheels, you need to do it all well in advance to your departure date. Be sure to schedule a thorough maintenance check-up with your mechanic at least a month before you raise sails, to allow enough time for successful repairs, and in order to fix any subsequent issues that may arise.
Check the air conditioning
No matter if you’re going on a winter adventure or if you’re headed towards a summer resort way out in the outback, your car’s AC needs to be running smoothly and without a hitch. Just imagine being stuck on the road for hours on end with nothing to cool you down under the scorching sun. Conversely, the AC can provide some much-needed heat during a winter road trip, so be sure to fix the AC no matter the time of year.
Check tyre pressure
This one isn’t important, it’s imperative. Poor tyre quality, whether they have been worn down by time and friction or if their pressure levels are low, can lead to serious issues on the road and even put your life in jeopardy.
Don’t take any chances and check your tyre quality at least a week before you leave, in order to make any changes if need be. Also, check the tyre pressure on the day of departure, both on your car and your caravan or trailer.
Inspect the brakes
What is the most important element in any roadworthy vehicle? The state and quality of its braking system. Brakes are designed to save your life, and a thorough brake check-up is a must. You can inspect and even fix the brakes yourself, although it’s a task best handled by a professional.
You can look at a car as you would a living organism, and conclude that it needs plenty of fluids to operate smoothly. However, it’s not just about the amount of oil and fluids in the vehicle, it’s also the state and quality of these elements that will determine the roadworthiness of your car.
Don’t leave your front lawn before checking your engine, gasoline, brakes, transmission, power steering fluid and windshield washer fluid. Always replace existing oil and fluids with new, quality Castrol oils to prevent any roadside malfunctions and promote the longevity of your vehicle.
Clean and pack evenly
Once you’re certain your car is running smoothly, it’s time to clean and scrub both the exterior and the interior, in order to eliminate any dirt and unpleasant odours that might ruin your road trip. First of all, the exterior. You need to make sure you thoroughly clean your windshields as well as all rear-view mirrors to promote safety at all times, and don’t forget to give your licence plates a good scrubbing as you don’t want to get pulled over and fined because a trooper couldn’t read them.
Secondly, be sure to scrub the seats, vacuum the floors and wipe the dashboard clean in order to remove unwanted aromas, and hang a scented ornament as well.
Lastly, you want to pack the car evenly. Every vehicle has its maximum load capacity, and if you want to ensure smooth sailing, you want to pack only the things you absolutely need, making sure the heavy loads are positioned at the front of the trunk. Distribute the lighter loads evenly on the sides.
Preparing for a road trip is a fun and rewarding experience, and if you get it just right and plan ahead, you will easily pave the road for an adventure of a lifetime!