Road Trip: Be Ready for Anything with a Trip Inspection at Charlie's Fast Lube Sparta
Posted in Inspection on December 19, 2021
Road trip, anyone? Nothing spoils a great vacation faster than ending up stranded on the side of the road or spending a week in a rundown motel while our vehicle sits in the shop. Long days on the road can bring out the worst in your vehicle, so before you leave, prepare it for the journey by getting a trip inspection at Charlie's Fast Lube Sparta in Sparta. After all, you wouldn't travel without clean socks, why ask your vehicle to travel with a load of dirty oil?
The first step in a trip inspection at Charlie's Fast Lube Sparta is to look at your travel plans. What kinds of roads will you be driving on? Will you be in the Illinois back country or on the freeway? Will you be crossing mountains? Off-roading? What will the weather be like? How far away from Sparta will you be traveling? How much are you hauling? Will you be towing a trailer or lugging a rooftop carrier? Will you encounter dust, mud, snow or sea salt? All of these questions can help determine which services are most needed. And don't hesitate to ask your Charlie's Fast Lube Sparta service advisor. He can give you good auto advice on what trip conditions are hardest on what systems of your vehicle and what kinds of services it realistically needs. Start with the tires and check them for tread wear and proper inflation. Replace or rotate them as needed. If you need to change them out for winter tires, then do so.
Then look at your shocks or struts for wear. Replace them if needed. You'll want that extra comfort on your trip. Be sure to check your alignment as well. Steering a vehicle that is out of alignment is tiring, and dangerous. Don't overlook your brakes. With extra passengers and baggage, your brakes are going to get a workout. You want them in top condition.
In addition, inspect belts and hoses. If any of them are close to wearing out, have them replaced before your long trip does them in.
Change your engine air filter if it needs it, or if it's close to needing it. Your car's air filter processes 12,000 times as much air as the amount of fuel it burns. A clean air filter will protect electronic sensors that affect how your engine runs.
Get an oil change at Charlie's Fast Lube Sparta in Sparta if it's coming due. Make it a full-service oil change while you're at it. That way, all of your fluids will get checked and topped off. Change any dirty or old fluids. Sparta drivers don't want to overstress their cooling systems or transmissions with dirty fluid during a long trip.
Does your vehicle smell? Check the cabin air filter. The bad smell could also indicate an exhaust leak, which can be fatal on a long trip. So don't ignore bad odors; check them out.
If your air conditioning hasn't been up to snuff, then give it an overhaul. You want your vacation to be relaxed and pleasant, and that means keeping the passenger compartment comfortable.
And be sure to check your wiper blades and your headlamps. You may find yourself driving in unfamiliar territory at night after a long day. You'll want to be able to see as much as possible.
Of course, almost everything listed here is just part of preventive maintenance for smart driving. If you keep up with your vehicle care on a regular basis, a trip inspection will be a breeze at Charlie's Fast Lube Sparta.
Taking care of your vehicle before you leave for a road trip will pay you back in safety, peace of mind, improved comfort and better fuel economy. It will also help your vacation go as planned by keeping you on the road and headed for that next great adventure. Just don't forget to pack your socks.
Charlie's Fast Lube Sparta
10 Northtown Drive
Sparta, Illinois 62286