UPDATED: Thursday, May 2, 2013 - 1:43pm
(StatePoint) Road tripping is a summertime rite of passage. From camping and beach trips to family reunions, most likely you'll be adding some extra miles to your vehicle over the next few months.
But before you hit the road, get your vehicle ready for travel.
These good maintenance practices will help keep you behind the wheel and out of the shop:
For proper, safer handling of your car and better gas mileage, ensure that your tires are not over or underinflated. Check your owner's manual for the recommended tire pressure. But remember, in warmer temperatures the air pressure in your tires will rise.
Rotate your tires on a regular basis to even out wear. While doing so, inspect the tread. If they're unevenly or overly worn, replace them immediately. And don't forget to keep a properly inflated spare tire in your trunk for roadside emergencies.
"Heat is the biggest enemy of performance and can damage car parts," warns Chris Barker, Technical Services Manager at Royal Purple a manufacturer of premium synthetic lubricants. "During warmer weather, on longer drives, or when tugging extras like boats, campers or trailers, it's important to take extra measures to keep engine temperatures low."
Barker recommends using a high performance radiator coolant additive . For example, Royal Purple's Purple Ice, improves heat transfer through the cooling system while protecting against rust, corrosion and, erosion. Extensive testing confirms that this coolant additive, which is compatible for both gasoline and diesel engines, lowers operating temperatures by an average of seven to 10 degrees when added to a 50/50 mix of coolant and water.
Monitor your air conditioner for performance. Is it running as well as last year? Have your A/C serviced annually to avoid a literally sticky situation.
Replace worn windshield wipers. Getting caught in a rainstorm with bad windshield wipers greatly impairs visibility and can be a safety hazard for you and other drivers.
Change the Oil
For fewer oil changes, change your motor oil to a premium synthetic motor oil, such as Royal Purple. Fewer oil changes mean time and money saved, and are better for the planet. By upgrading, you can expect better engine performance, fuel efficiency and corrosion protection. More information can be found at www.RoyalPurple.com .
The last place you'll want to be on your vacation is in the shop. By preparing, you can pave the way for a hassle-free summer on the road.