Even though flying is the ideal way to travel these days, nothing beats an old-fashioned road trip if you want to sightsee while on your way to your destination. While there’s much to prepare for when it comes to one of these trips, the one thing many people forget to plan for is potential car problems. However, if you take the time to read through this short guide on how to prepare your car for a long road trip, you’ll be far less likely to run into any issues.
Run a Full Inspection
If you still have some time before your trip, getting an oil change is never a bad idea. While at the shop, ask the mechanic if they can give your vehicle a quick inspection to make sure everything is in good condition for your upcoming trip.
They’ll probably check your brakes, tires, and fluids for you, as well as anything else you specify for them. If anything is in mediocre condition, it might be a good idea to replace or fix it now rather than find out that you have a serious problem after spending half a day on the open road.
Protect the Paint
While the internal components of your vehicle are the most important, you’ll want to consider protecting its exterior as well. On this trip, your paint job will likely take a beating. Direct sunlight and potentially inclement weather can really do a number on your car’s paint, and that’s without factoring in the small rocks and pebbles that trucks will likely launch at it.
If you have the time, giving your vehicle a good wax job will help shield its paint job from these things. If you want to use an even stronger layer of protection, try a ceramic coating instead. There’s a lot of science behind how ceramic coatings work, but the main thing you need to know is that your paint will never be safer while on your trip.
Pack for a Roadside Emergency
While preparing your car before your long road trip is key, certain events you could never prepare for may still occur. That’s why you should pack a roadside emergency kit before you go. Some important things to have in this pack are:
- Car jack
- Portable jump starter
- Reflective triangles
- Duct tape
- Heavy-duty gloves
This is just a list of must-haves; be sure to bring anything else you think might benefit you. If you don’t have any of these items already, you can likely find pre-built roadside emergency kits online.
Upgrade Your Car Insurance
Even though having certain items in case of an emergency will be quite helpful for getting back on the road after a small issue, larger problems will need a more expensive fix. While accidents aren’t likely, it never hurts to be prepared. Upgrading your insurance is a good way to make sure you’ll have the coverage needed to handle any issues you might encounter on your trip.