Life is a journey, not a destination” – Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Travel is the best way to broaden our horizons. For some, it’s more than a mere trip between destinations but a spiritual awakening that refreshes your body and soul. Whether travelling alone or with your close ones, a long road trip can be a thrilling event right from the planning stages itself. However, we all get a little stuck when we choose our vehicle and make sure that it’s ready for the trip as much as we are.
Our excitement often surpasses the need to inspect the car and make the necessary arrangements. We often place too much trust in our vehicles and do not spend enough time on details like the health and condition of the car.
A perfect ride can add so much to a trip and make it memorable. A smooth ride translates into a smooth mind and an enjoyable travel experience. So, here we will discuss a few key aspects to look for before turning the key to your incredible journey.
The checklist for your car to prepare for the road trip
It’s one of the most crucial components in your car. Ensure that it’s not past its expiry date. If your battery is old, you might want to consider changing it, especially if it’s over three years. Also, see if the charging components are working correctly and not loose. Damage to the battery can leave you stranded on the road and can seriously affect the mood of the trip.
See if there are any bents or damage to the wheel. Modern alloy wheels may last longer, even with slight damage, but you don’t want to risk it while on the road. Also, check if the tyre grips are proper and not seriously worn off. A good thumb rule in case of wear and tear is to see if you can see the tyres’ treads. If yes, then it’s time to change them for sure. The tyres’ health is also conditional on the length of the trip, and if you are expecting a lot of bumpy rides, then it’s best to go for newer tyres before you start.
- Fuel tank
You need to have a clear understanding of the fuel tank’s capacity. It’s advisable to visit a garage and check for any rust buildup inside the fuel tank, leading to leakage. Also, ensure that your fuel tank cap fits tight while you close it.
Check the fluids in your radiator, brakes, windshield, transmission, power steering, etc. Lubrication with these fluids usually depends upon how far your vehicle has been driven since the last time and how far you intend to drive on your next road trip. Your car functions steadily if you lubricate all these parts.
- Air filters
Similarly, clean your air filters and washers before you begin. On the road, pollution is a significant issue that you have to consider. The more time you spend on the street, the more hazardous fumes you take in. Having your filters and washers clean and in perfect condition can be very helpful.
- Wipers and lights
It might not seem like a huge deal, but you depend on your lights and wipers for your life in emergencies. So take extra care to see if they are working well. Old and worn-out wiper blades can leave scratches and streaks on your windshield. Likewise, if there’s any fog or rain or dust, your lights lead the way. So their condition is paramount while on the trip.
- Suspension and alignment
Imagine having to suffer a bumpy ride throughout your trip. Horrible right? Take your car to the garage before the trip and check the suspension and the alignment of the tyres. Even slight imperfections in these can cause severe damage to your tyres during a long ride.
Look for the brake pedals’ squeaking, grinding, steering wheel shaking, and sponginess. These might be indicators of a faulty brake system. And no matter how much you compromise, breaks are not the area you can overlook. It’s simply a matter of life and death on the road. So even if it’s a bit inconvenient, take a good look at the condition of the brakes and ensure that they are in perfect health.
- Spare tyres & Emergency kit
These are not the essential components of the car, but they are necessary for your trip. In case of an emergency, having a spare tire can be the difference between being stranded and reaching your destination a mere 20 mins late.
As long as we are on the topic, we also wanted to bring your attention to one other element you should seriously consider while planning your trip: A Car Tracker for safety.
They are simply unique pieces of technology that no mobile phone or car GPS can overshadow. By design, GPS trackers are made to withstand harsh conditions, and they give you accurate location data wherever you are on the globe. Some advanced trackers also have a built-in SOS button that can be a real lifesaver in an emergency. You don’t have to worry about getting lost as you can always access live locations using a GPS tracker even when your map or connectivity in your mobile phone fails you. So spare a few minutes and buy one for your trip. You can thank us later.
That being said, road trips are all about being present and enjoying the great outdoors. So enjoy every moment you are out there, and cherish the memories for as long as you can remember. Have a wonderful trip.