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women enjoying in her car

The first stop to make before heading out on any summer road trip is an auto repair clinic. Having an enjoyable, problem-free road trip is a benefit of having a vehicle inspected beforehand. The following categories contain the most important items to have inspected before leaving on a summertime road trip.

General Tune-Up

To have the engine run smoothly and efficiently may require a tune-up. This will increase fuel economy, especially when traveling long distances on the freeway. Spark plugs, motor oil, and the air, fuel, and oil filters are the most common items to have changed during a tune-up.

Cooling System

Next, have the vehicle’s radiator, water pump, fan clutch, timing belt, and coolant inspected. If the water pump, timing belt, or thermostat needs to be replaced, consider having all three changed at the same time, as it will save on labor costs. Having a coolant flush performed is a good safety measure to take, even if it isn’t the scheduled time.

Accessories Inspection

The first accessory that comes to mind in the summertime is the air conditioner. If it doesn’t appear to be blowing its coldest, have leak tests performed, and repairs made if needed. Aside from a lack of comfort, overheating can be a serious health hazard in the summer. Another important accessory to have inspected is the alternator. When an alternator goes out it will leave the vehicle dead on the road, and nearly every other system in the vehicle will stop working.

Rubber Components

Never leave on a trip if tires have worn tread, visible damage, or improper air pressure. It is also important to have belts, hoses, and suspension pieces inspected. Belts control most vehicle accessories, timing, and the engine fan. Hoses that are old or cracking may cause leaks or poor performance. Along with having the suspension bushings checked, a wheel alignment might be a good idea.

Call us at 301-585-7557 to schedule an appointment.