How to Prepare Your Car for the Perfect Road Trip

In 4 weeks, two days and 7 ½ hours your kids are going to officially be on Summer Vacation…not that you’re counting. But chances are the minute your kids dump all their school supplies in your mudroom after their last day at school the first thing out of their mouths will be “where are we going on vacation?!”  It’s the question that will echo through thousands of households this year, from young and old. But almost as importantly as where are you going, is how do you prepare for the trip?

With more and more families getting away this year, planning is key. So, when preparing a road trip checklist, consider your vehicle as well.  Because before worrying how to pack your car for a road trip, you should know how to make sure your car is road trip ready.

How to Know if Your Car can make a Long Trip?

Without any real automotive repair knowledge, it is hard to guess how to know if your car can make a long trip.  Some may think ‘is my car too old for a road trip’ or others may want to know ‘is renting a car for a road trip a good idea’.  The answer to both is to keep a road trip car maintenance checklist!  Consider what work you have had done on your vehicle and what servicing is coming up. If your vehicle is due for a serious maintenance check-up, it would be a good idea to bring your car in before your trip to avoid any unexpected issues while on the road. It is also important to take into account the time of year you are traveling and the road conditions on your trip.  If you are heading to the mountains in the winter, the condition of your tires, brakes, and wipers would be on the top of that maintenance checklist.  But if you are heading to the shore in July, then you will want to make sure your air conditioning has been serviced and you have your radiator checked.  Since it is a challenge to know what is most important when you plan a road trip and what to take care of if you are driving and traveling,rely on the experts – your automotive experts.

How to Prepare for a long drive by yourself or with family

When you plan a road trip what to take care of if you are driving along varies in some ways from a trip you plan to share with others.  If you are driving by yourself, you should consider that you will need to be self-sufficient.  Loss of cell service, poor weather conditions, and mechanical problems will all be YOUR problem alone, so be prepared.

  1. Let others know where you are traveling – having others aware of your route will help if you have car problems but can’t reach help due to poor cell service or a dead phone.
  2. Keep a paper map with you – While GPS is amazing, accidents and detours can wreak havoc on your plans. Keep a paper map in your car to help find the best way around a disaster.
  3. Check your emergency provision – Keep a supply of snacks, water, blankets and batteries with you in case you break down or get stranded. It may take some time for help to arrive, and depending on the conditions, you may need to prepare for a long wait.
  4. Have roadside assistance preprogrammed in your phone – If the worst should happen, and you break down have your roadside assistance service already in your phone. Last thing you want to do is look for that number while you’re sitting stranded on the side of the road. 

 Where Can I get my car checked before a Road Trip?

While you can’t always predict unexpected delays and detours, you CAN make sure you’ve done everything possible to make your vehicle trip ready. Any mechanic can complete a pre-trip inspection Cost, however, is one thing that will vary. At Flemington Car & Truck Country, let  our service advisors know you are looking for a road trip car inspection near me and what type of trip you are planning.  They will inspect your vehicle, review your previous service records, even top off your washer fluid and add air to your tires if necessary for free.  No matter what you drive, whether it is a Ford, Lincoln, Audi, Volkswagen, Porsche, Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, Cadillac, INFINIT, Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram, Subaru, Honda, Jaguar, Land Rover, or any other brand, our expert mechanics can make sure your vehicle is ready to hit the road.  Schedule an appointment at any of our 8 location at Flemington, Clinton or Princeton locations.