The long break is over, and those who spent summer in their hometowns are getting ready for the long drive back. Unfortunately, many things can happen during this trip: tires bursting, engine overheating, and brakes snapping, among other things. Thankfully, you can avoid all these problems by properly tuning your car. A car dealer in Albuquerque, NM shares a simple car maintenance checklist you can use as a guide.
Check and Top Up Fluids
You’ve surely driven around town a lot during your stay, and your car’s engine and cooling system are possibly nearly bone dry at this point. Before you hit the road again, check your mileage. If it’s past 3,000 miles since your last oil change, better change that oil again. While manufacturers claim newer car models can last 10,000 miles between oil changes, it’s safer to stick to the 3-6-9 rule. The same goes for antifreeze. Better top it off before going on a long journey back to your college town. The last thing you want is to break down during your trip due to overheating.
Replace Worn-Out Brakes
Have you been driving your car on rugged and hilly terrains? If you have, chances are the brake pads are already worn out. You can feel it as your brakes squeal or grind, even at standard speed on a level road. Replace them right away before the damage worsens. Nothing is more nerve-wracking than driving above 80 mph and realizing your brakes have snapped and there’s congestion ahead.
No Dead or Broken Car Lights
Check all exterior lights – headlights and signal lights – for cracks and obstructions. Even if you are traveling during the day and on a typically empty highway, you will need those lights at some point. Like what they always say in films, it’s better to have them when you don’t need them than to need them when you don’t have them. So don’t wait until you reach your destination to have them checked. Do it before you go back.
Flip or Replace Tires
It’s not just your brakes that get beat up during your summer trip–the tires do too. You’d be surprised by how much rubber you’ve burned in just a couple of weeks of road-tripping around Albuquerque. Of course, one way to deal with wear and tear is to flip them or switch them around to make the most of the less worn-out portion of the tires. But if you notice all the tread is gone, and your tires no longer have a safe grip on the road, don’t hesitate to replace them with new tires.
Test Your Battery
Your car dying on you when the nearest repair shop is miles away is probably the worst thing you can experience as a college student with little knowledge about fixing cars. AAA may be one call away, but if you’re in a dead zone, you’re in big trouble. Hitchhiking may also be a bad idea. So before taking that long drive, have your car battery tested. A dealership in Albuquerque, NM knows a lot of reliable car repair shops you can go to for this simple test, which only lasts about 5 to 10 minutes.
If you’re unsure how to go about checking your car, you can ask help from your parents. You can also bring your vehicle to a service center for a tune up and to check for other issues. Check out the Fiesta Volkswagen dealer in Albuquerque, NM for more ideas.