go on a drive

Go on a Drive: Car Preparedness for Road Trips

Everybody wants to have a sense of adventure once in a while, and road trips are a great way to experience that. Taking on the open road is an important part of a vacation plan, but more often than not, motorists forget to prepare their cars for such an undertaking.

A Brief History

Long drives have a history in American culture since commercial airline trips came after the invention of automobiles. In the United States, cross-country adventures can be traced back to the early 20th century. The first road trip took place in 1903 and was pioneered by Horatio Nelson Jackson, Sewall K. Crocker, and a dog named Bud. Their adventure from San Francisco to New York took them 63 days to complete. Traveling by car back then was no easy feat because the roads were treacherous and cars constantly break down.

A couple of decades passed since then that the automotive industry began to thrive, making America the largest manufacturer in 1950s. Road improvement led to Route 66, making it easier for people to travel to the West for vacation. Now, road trips are still a fun way to take a holiday at famous sites and landmarks along cross-country roads. A great place to visit, for instance, is Utah, one of the nation’s great outdoor state that is packed with activities for summer and winter. Salt Lake City, its capital, is known for its fine powder ski resorts and mountain-based adventures.

Car owners should always check the condition of their cars before planning a road trip, though. A complete car checkup before and after trips is necessary to avoid problems along the way. But, if there are unexpected problems, especially when going in or out interstate in Utah, there are available auto repair in Salt Lake City for motorists.

Before Hitting the Road

check your car

Here are a few things every motorist should do for mechanical check-over before a big adventure. These are preventative measures and is not a replacement for routine maintenance:

  1. Fluids. Checking for sufficient engine oil levels should be done to avoid damaging your engine. Make sure that motor oil checks are up to date and are not due for an oil change. Transmission fluid inspection assures swift gear changes while checking brake fluids prevents loss in car braking control.
  2. Leaks. Rubber hoses in cars are exposed to extreme conditions under the hood. Inspecting radiator hoses can prevent overheating in engines. Bulges and blisters are signs of weakened hoses and should be replaced immediately.
  3. Drive belts. A belt can last for at least four years, or less than 50,000 miles. Belts can be checked from underneath the car or under the hood and should be inspected for cracks. Damaged or worn-out belts can cause engine shutdown and overheating.
  4. Tires. The right amount of tire pressure should be checked before long drives. Heat and speed can take a toll on a tire if it doesn’t have enough amount of pressure. Low tire pressure also affects fuel consumption and can cause run hotter due to friction. Also, inspect the treads on all tires, including the spare, and make sure it’s not too worn.
  5. Battery. Check the terminals for corrosion if the car’s battery is a couple of years old. Make sure the leads are tightly in place because a loose lead can kill the alternator due to voltage dump.
  6. Lights. Car lights should be fully functioning if driving during nighttime. Inspect every light to ensure proper road safety.

Have the car always prepared to take on the road for peace of mind and confidence. Your next great adventure should be worry-free and memorable. Go out and explore the world for an experience of a lifetime.