Traveling in your car with two children locked in battle over a radio station can certainly be a form of self-abuse . . . but, it is nothing compared to the stress when your car breaks down en route. As funny as some of the situations can be looking back, a breakdown at the time just isn't funny.
You can try and be prepared for the inevitable failure, but does it rain when you have an umbrella? How does one prepare for the possible breakdown?
Here are a few tips to keeping you on the move. They cover everything, but will help with most problems you may encounter:
- Join an auto club and buy a cellular phone. If you don't know anything about cars - Don't Touch Anything and call for help.
- Put together a road trip survival kit and make sure you include (1) roll of 2" duct tape. It can patch a ruptured hose, seal a leaking power steering line, etc.
- Pick up a starter set of tools, but keep it simple and compact.; Ask your ASE certified technician what tools are the best for your car.
- Carry a real jack, a gallon or two of coolant, a quart of oil, a can of brake fluid and a pint of power steering fluid, a flashlight with batteries and a good set of jumper cables.
Before a trip be sure to check:
- Engine oil level.
- Transmision fluid level.
- Water level in radiator and/or coolant overflow tank
- Water in battery (if applicable).
- Look at fan belts for wear and/or loose strings.
- Air pressure in tires (usually run 2-5 lbs. higher than normal for better gas mileage and extra load).
- Tire condition(insert quarter on the edge in bottom of the grooves, if you can see the whole head you have less than 3/32 of tread left (new tire=10/32 or more) you're likely to hydroplane on wet roads. Check it at the worst place on the tire, not the deepest tread, as this wear place is the most likely area that the tire is actually touching the road.)
We sell and install tires! We will be happy to do all these things and more with our 30 point pre-trip inspection