Car care tips: Road Trip Preparation

June 7th, 2016 by

How to prepare your Volkswagen for a long road trip

Summer is just around the corner, and we’re already beginning to feel its heat here in the Middletown, New York area. Naturally, many residents are starting to consider how they want to use their vacation days, and a road trip is a popular option. Whether it’s just a long drive over an extended weekend, or a full on trek across the country, you’ll want to learn how to prepare your Volkswagen for a long road trip to ensure your adventure goes smoothly.

Car service work before a long trip

Unless you’re driving a brand new model, you’re likely to need to have your car inspected before you put many miles on it. This is especially true if you haven’t taken your vehicle in since the season has changed, as the difference between hot and cold temperatures will almost definitely call for you to check your tires and oil. Here are 9 things to have inspected before you take your car on a road trip:Key to the perfect road trip

  • Check wipers and fluid levels to ensure you can see during rain or shine, and to help clear off the debris you’ll accumulate while driving
  • Schedule an oil change if you’re getting close to needing one. You’re about to put on a whole lot of miles, and you want to take good care of your car.
  • Have your battery inspected, as the last thing you want is to lose a charge while on the road. Clean the terminals for a solid connection and have the battery tested.
  • Have tires checked for tread, air pressure and wear, as a burst tire could ruin a trip and can be dangerous. Also make sure to check your spare, just in case you run over a nail or other sharp object.
  • Check your tire jack to make sure it is still operable in a pinch.
  • Ensure your GPS system is updated and working properly. Nobody wants to get lost, and phone signal can be tricky if you enter rural areas.
  • Check coolant levels to ensure your engine won’t overheat.
  • Other fluids to check include brake and power-steering fluid.
  • Check all lights to ensure you won’t be left in the dark when driving at night and your turn signals and brakes lights work.

Read More: Best summer gear and accessories for VW

These are just some tips for preparing your car for a road trip, but also make sure you have necessary supplies for yourself in case of an emergency. You’ll want a basic emergency kit that includes both standard vehicle supplies like jumper cables and a basic first aid kit. Bring warm clothing even if you expect to stay out in the sun, just in case you do get stranded. Having a AAA membership will give you some peace of mind, and there’s even a phone app in case of emergency.

Do you have any road trip tips to help others prepare? Leave us a comment below to share, and be sure to check back here at the Compass Volkswagen Blog for more tips and trips throughout the season.