If you’re planning a road trip for spring break, or just taking a day trip one weekend, you should make sure your vehicle is in top-notch condition before you hit the road. Here’s a checklist of items for you to complete to stay safe during your trip and avoid any setbacks.
Tires and Brakes
Before you plan your stops and make your itinerary, make sure you and your passengers will be safe on the road. Road safety starts with making sure your brake system is up to par. Here are a few of the signs that you might need to have brake maintenance performed before you start your trip:
- Squealing noises – If you’ve noticed any squealing noises coming from your car you might need to have your brake pads replaced.
- A spongy or soft brake pedal is another indicator that it might be time for new brake pads or that your brake fluid is low.
- Slow stopping time.
If you notice any of these signs, make sure you have your brakes changed before you leave.
Another area to check is your tires. Make sure there isn’t any damage to your tires and that your tread depth is at recommended levels. If you need to, replace any old or worn tires.
Under the Hood
Under the hood, the first thing to check is your car’s battery. It will put a damper on your plans if you wake up to a dead battery on the scheduled day of departure. Make sure the battery connections are fully secured and that there isn’t any corrosion. Next, check your belts and hoses for fraying, cracking, or other signs of wear. More than likely, you’ll find them in good conditions. If not, you’ll be happy you got a replacement before any costly damage could occur. Finally, make sure all of your fluid levels are correct. Check your oil, transmission fluid, and windshield wiper fluid.
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Minor Pre-Trip Inspection
Make a sweep of your exterior safety features. Check that all of your signals and lights are working properly, and replace any bulbs that have gone out. Check your windshield wipers and replace them if they are worn out or damaged. Last, but not least, access how well your air-conditioning is working. Is it cooling properly? If not it may need to be serviced by a mechanic. A lack of air conditioning won’t put you in any danger, but your passengers won’t be too happy about it.
If you don’t feel comfortable completing your vehicle inspection yourself, schedule an appointment with the Volvo Cars Fredericksburg service center. We’ll be happy to serve you.
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