How to Prepare Your Vehicle for a Summer Road Trip

The Griswold family’s adventure in National Lampoon’s Vacation wouldn’t be quite so hilarious (or catastrophic) if they had a GPS system and DVD player built into their station wagon. With today’s modern vehicle designs and gadgets, a long road trip is definitely not the undertaking it used to be. But, all the entertainment and mapping systems in the world are no good if you end up sitting at the roadside with the hood open and your engine smoking.

Whether your destination is the beach or the mountains, a little due diligence will help you avoid vehicle repair delays on your journey through Calgary.

5 Maintenance Essentials for Your Road Trip
  1. Check fluids. This includes coolant, engine oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, and windshield washer fluid. Your coolant is of particular importance to keep your vehicle from overheating after driving 80+ kph for hours on end. It’s also wise to keep an extra jug of coolant in your car for your return journey.
  2. Check the brakes. Your car’s braking system is your last line of defence. It needs to be in tiptop shape. Have an expert conduct a thorough inspection even if the brakes are not squealing yet. If your brake pedal is softer than usual, it might be a sign of abnormal deterioration, so have it checked as soon as possible.
  3. Check tires — and the spare. Inspect tires for adequate tread depth and signs of uneven wear and tear. Make sure you check your tire pressure and inflate them to the car manufacturer’s recommended pressure (this is usually visible when opening the driver’s side door). Also, test the pressure of your spare tire and inflate it, as necessary. If you’re stuck with a flat, you’ll be hugely disappointed if you can’t rely on the spare.
  4. Check the battery. A road trip is no fun if your car won’t start. Check your battery to make sure it has a strong charge and clean terminals. If the battery is over three years old, bring it into a car repair shop in Calgary to have it inspected.
  5. Check electrical equipment. Make sure your headlights, blinkers, and the interior lights are working. Other motorists will have a hard time gauging their distance from you if a headlight is out. Not to mention, you might get pulled over and ticketed by the police if a light is out, or you fail to signal.

For car repairs and truck repairs, Calgary and Lethbridge drivers trust the specialists at National Transmission. We can help you replace your transmission fluid as well as perform in-depth cleaning and testing to ensure your vehicle is ready for your adventure. Book an appointment at one of our convenient locations today!

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