6 Car Checks You Must Perform Before Going on a Long Road Trip

Imagine driving through the highway of Nevada with your buddies in the backseat of your car for a weeklong road trip. How will you feel if your car breaks down in the middle of the road with no sign of any gas stations or local people? Awful, right? To avoid such scenarios, you should always check the following things in your car before going on a long road trip.

1. Tires:

It is absolutely important to ensure that your car’s tires are in good condition before you hit the road. There are three major things you need to see – tire pressure, tread depth, and if there is any damage on the tires. You can get the tire inflated if the tire pressure is low. However, you should consider replacing the tires with new ones if the tire tread depth has worn down or there is damage on one of them. If the cost is a problem, there are companies that offer bad credit tires with easy payment plans. You can find the right tire and loading information on the car’s door frame.

2. Engine:

You cannot afford to encounter engine failure during a road trip, especially if you are planning to drive through remote areas. Check the oil levels to ensure everything is fine with the engine. You can measure the oil level with the dipstick that is usually kept on the side of the engine. Also, always use the right type of oil as per your vehicle type. Do not overfill the engine, as that can be damaging to the engine. And lastly, keep your battery terminals secure, clean, and greased.

3. Fuel:

It is recommended that you start your road trip with a full tank. During road trips, you may often come across long stretches of road without any gas stations. So, it is better to fill your tank with gas up to the safe limit. Instead of waiting for the fuel sign to indicate insufficient fuel, you should start looking for the nearest gas station as soon as the fuel meter drops below half. Also, it is important that you buy fuel from trusted company-owned gas stations and not from any shady place by the road.

4. Coolant:

In order to keep your engine functional, it is important to ensure there is enough engine coolant to keep the engine from overheating. The coolant is a mixture of water and antifreeze. Make sure that the coolant reservoir is somewhere between the minimum and maximum limit marks. It will be better to get it refilled before a long trip if you want your car to perform at its best. Since you will be driving for hours without stopping during the road trip, having enough engine coolant will ensure your engine works smoothly.

5. Lights:

You also need to make sure that all the lights in your car are functioning properly. Headlights, tail lights, indicators, and brake lights – they all are extremely important parts of a vehicle. If one of these lights is not working properly, you need to get it fixed. You should buy lights from brands that your manufacturers recommend. If you are planning to drive after dark, you should definitely fix the lights before the trip.

6. Documentation:

You need to carry your car’s registration papers, car insurance documents, and your driver’s license whenever you are driving. Make sure they are all valid and up-to-date. If you miss any of these documents and get pulled over during the trip, you can get a hefty fine. Also, these documents will be quite useful if you meet with an accident during the trip.


Road trips are great fun as long as the car is functioning properly. By performing these aforementioned checks, you boost the chances of having a memorable experience on the road with your loved ones.

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