A quick and easy automotive checkup can help prepare a vehicle for the stress of high temperatures and increase its reliability on long road trips.
To help prevent dangerous and inconvenient tire failure, examine tires for uneven or excessive tread wear. Make sure all tires, including the spare, are inflated properly.
Belt, Hoses and Fluids --
With the engine off, look for worn or cracked belts and damaged, blistered or soft hoses. Inspect the antifreeze/coolant level and condition, making certain the proper 50/50 mixture of water and coolant is present.
Motor Oil --
Check motor oil level and condition. If driving under extreme conditions, such as very hot temperatures or towing a heavy trailer, switch to motor oil with higher viscosity. Check the owner`s manual for specific oil recommendations.
Air Conditioning --
A properly working air conditioning system also will help motorists keep their cool in summer heat. If needed, have the air conditioning serviced by a qualified technician, using the refrigerant R-12 in older systems or R-134A in new or modified air conditioners. Do not use non-approved substitute refrigerants.
Emergency Kit --
Because even properly maintained vehicles can break down, AAA Minneapolis advises motorists to equip their vehicle with an emergency kit containing at least the following items: A flashlight with extra batteries, warning devices such as flares or reflective triangles, jumper cables, a first-aid kit, and a cellular phone to summon emergency assistance.