Summer traveling by car can often mean heat, heavy traffic, poor weather created driving conditions, and at times sitting in stalled traffic. Before departing on summer trips the thought of whether the car is ready usually crosses our minds.

In just a few minutes you can determine if your car is ready for long-distance travel.

Here is a pre-trip checklist that will only take a few minutes.

  • Check all fluids, including engine oil, power steering and brake and transmission. Be sure to also check the antifreeze/coolant and windshield washer fluid levels. Make sure your windshield wipers are not cracked or worn.
  • Check hoses and belts that may be cracked, brittle, frayed, loose or show signs of excessive wear. These are critical to the proper functioning of the electrical system, air conditioning, power steering and the cooling system.
  • Check the tires, including tire pressure and tread. Uneven wear indicates a need for wheel alignment. Tires should also be checked for bulges and bald spots.
  • Take the car for a short drive around the block and on the highway.  Pay attention to anything unusual in how the vehicle is operating or any unusual noises. If you suspect a problem have it checked out.
  • Check all your lights including turn signal lights.

Proper prevention can save you mounds of headaches during your summer travel. The risk of safety hazards, delays, aggravation, untimely costs, and inconvenience can be reduced with a pre-trip vehicle inspection.

Does your car insurance company offer roadside assistance? This could be an invaluable service if your car needs attention while away from home.
Finally, make sure your emergency auto kit and supplies are in order. How about a tire inflator that runs off your vehicles output power supplies or what is commonly known as the ‘cigarette lighter’?