Don't let these car problems ruin your next road trip

November 6, 2014

Hitting the open road for a destination is amazing, but it's important to make sure your vehicle is up for the challenge before heading out.

Don't let these car problems ruin your next road trip

Everyone needs to get away sometimes, but unfortunately, not everyone has the money for plane tickets. Flying might not even be your preferred method of travel. Really, though, who needs planes when there is plenty of fun to be had on a road trip? Make sure your car is in working order by keeping the following in mind.

1. Tire problems

It's easy to take your car to an auto shop to get checked before the big trip, but you can examine most of the important things yourself. Checking the tire pressure and fluids in a vehicle is really simple.

Additionally, a tread gauge can let you know if your car's tires are fully ready to go. It's also important to make sure the air filter is clean and all lights are working before a trip.

2. Missing fluids

Checking the fluids in a vehicle is vital, but having plenty of oil doesn't necessarily mean everything is okay. You should never forget to check the almost-hidden sticker that tells you when an oil change is due.

While checking the fluids, check the windshield wipers. The last thing you want is obstructed visibility when torrential rains start coming down on a long and open highway.

3. Faulty breaks or shocks

There are plenty of things you can do on your own to prep your vehicle for a long road trip, but certain things should probably be handled by a professional. If the brakes or shocks are starting to fail, a road trip isn't the time to test their endurance.

If a vehicle has any serious issues, or even issues that could quickly become serious, it's best to have them checked out by a professional before leaving.

4. Lacking a survival kit

No one knows what the open road will bring and it's always best to be prepared, so pack a survival kit. At a minimum, this kit should have additional water, food, a flashlight, extra batteries and a warm blanket.

Certain weather conditions could make other items essential. If getting stuck in the snow is a possibility, bring along a small shovel and something that can give tires additional traction, such as sand or kitty litter.

Road trips are meant to be fun adventures, but not being prepared can quickly turn a fun trip into a nightmare. Follow these tips and hit the road worry-free.

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