If you’re preparing to hit the highway for a long anticipated road trip, be sure to have your car checked by a trustworthy mechanic well in advance of your departure. If you don’t know of any mechanics in your area to give your vehicle a ready-for-vacation inspection, check out the service center finder on Cars.com. Simply enter your zip code in the field and a list will be populated of certified mechanics and shops in your area. These providers have been vetted and should be as trustworthy as mechanics come.
When you call the shop to schedule an appointment, be sure to tell them you’re heading on the road and need to make sure all the critical components of your vehicle are in optimal working order. If you’re close to needing an oil change, and plan to log hundreds of miles on your trip, there is no harm in having it done before you leave eliminating the need to have your oil changed while on the road.
Your mechanic will check all sorts of things on your vehicle including all fluids and filters. They will also measure the tread on your tires to ensure they are fit to log significant mileage. Same with your brake system and your air conditioning. They will also check your spark plugs and all major belts that are part of the engine.
There are things you can do at home too to ensure your vehicle is road-trip ready. Consider putting together a small survival kit for your car in the event unforeseen circumstances occur while you’re on the road. The kit should include a flashlight, general tools, snacks, water, a small first aid kit and whatever else you think you could possibly need if you found yourself stranded. Also be sure to check your spare tire, and double check to make sure the jack and other tire changing tools are where they should be in the car. Be sure to have your most recent proof of insurance and consider bringing along a spare key in the event you find yourself locked out of the vehicle. A little preparation goes a long way to ensure a great time on the road.