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Part of the fun of vacations is getting to enjoy all the beautiful and unusual sights along the way. The key to all this sightseeing, though, is that your car operates flawlessly for the duration of your trip. If something major breaks, you could end up with a big headache instead of the incredible memories you were expecting. Fortunately, many of the car problems that can sideline your vacation plans are preventable, so long as you take a few steps to properly care for your vehicle. Here are three problems to check for before hitting the road.
Very few sounds can turn your stomach faster than the thumping sound of a flat tire, especially when you’re on a much-anticipated vacation. While flat tires that are caused by road debris are fairly difficult to prevent, you can still take some steps to lessen your risk of flat tires that occur for other reasons. Before you leave, ensure that all your tires are inflated to the proper PSI. This measurement should be in your owner’s manual and on the tires themselves. Additionally, it’s important to have your tires regularly rotated and balanced so they wear evenly, helping to prevent premature failure of one or more tires.
If you’re vacationing in the summer, you won’t get far if you don’t have a properly functioning air conditioning. To be sure, your vehicle can still operate without air conditioning, but covering hundreds or thousands of miles in the summer heat without air conditioning can certainly make for a miserable trip. To prevent this, it’s a good idea to have a mechanic take a look at your system to ensure the refrigerant is at the proper level. Plus, if you’re experiencing issues with your system, your mechanic can check to ensure there are no leaks that may indicate an impending failure.
Picture this: your trip is going great when you stop to get some gas. Everyone takes a restroom break, you grab some snacks, and everyone gets back in the car. You turn the key, only to hear... Nothing. A dead battery can cost you a lot of time as you attempt to hunt down a replacement, putting your vacation timetable in jeopardy. Especially if you break down in a small town with no auto parts store, you could be in for a long delay. That’s why it’s important to have your battery tested before you head out on vacation to ensure it’s still healthy and able to hold a full charge. If not, have it replaced before you pack up and head out.
Of course, unexpected problems can occur with your vehicle just about any time. If a problem does occur while you’re on vacation, it’s important to take it as it comes. Sure, waiting for your vehicle to be repaired isn’t the most ideal way to spend your time away, but you can work to still make it a memory that ends up being good. Play a game, do some exploring, or whatever you need to do to help pass the time until you can hit the road again. After all, the best part of a vacation is getting to spend extra time with those you care about.