Before you pack your car and hit the road for your driving trip, the Car Care
Council recommends conducting a pre-vehicle inspection to help avoid the
inconvenience and potential safety hazards of breaking down miles away from
“A pre-trip vehicle check can determine how road-ready your vehicle is so you
can take steps to have the problems fixed before your road trip,” said Rich
White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Having a thorough inspection
done on your car will give you peace of mind as you travel and help make your
The pre-trip vehicle check recommended by the Car Care Council includes:
· Schedule a tune-up to help the engine deliver the best balance of
power and fuel economy and produce the lowest level of emissions.
· Check the brake system and make sure the battery connection is
clean, tight and corrosion-free.
· Check filters and fluids, including engine oil, power steering and
brake and transmission, as well as windshield washer solvent and
antifreeze/coolant. Dirty air filters can waste gas and cause the
engine to lose power.
· Check the hoses and belts that can become cracked, brittle, frayed,
loose or show signs of excessive wear. These are critical to the
proper functioning of the electrical system, air conditioning, power
steering and the cooling system.
· Check the tires, including tire pressure and tread. Underinflated tires
reduce a vehicle’s fuel economy and uneven wear indicates a need
for wheel alignment. Tires should also be checked for bulges and
· Check that the gas cap is not damaged, loose or missing to prevent
gas from spilling or evaporating.