(703) 352-7770 |  3215 Old Pickett Road, Fairfax, VA 22031  |  Mon–Fri: 8:00am–6:00pm (After Hours Key Dropoff Available)

Prepare Your Car for Summer Road Trips

June 19, 2023

Prepare Your Car for Summer Road Trips | ABS Unlimited in in Fairfax, VA. Image of Father change tire for family trip

Historically, summer has been the time when families load up their vehicles and hit the road. However, before you hit the road, make sure your vehicle is up for the task! And the best way to do this is to have a comprehensive pre-trip inspection at ABS Unlimited Auto Repair. During our pre-trip inspection service, our mechanic will explore various systems and components to verify they are in good working order. While we can’t guarantee your vehicle’s performance, a pre-trip inspection is an excellent way to reduce the likelihood of mechanical failure. Let’s explore a few simple preventative maintenance steps you can take to prepare your car for summer road trips. 

Visually Inspect Your Tires

Did you know tire blowouts are responsible for a staggering 78,000 automobile crashes annually? Even worse, tire blowouts are estimated to be responsible for over 400 fatalities each year. However, you can reduce the likelihood of a blowout or tire-related accident by having the necessary tire services as suggested by the manufacturer or your mechanic. Don’t have time to come in for a pre-trip inspection? Here are a few preventative maintenance, pre-trip inspections you can do yourself. 

  1. Do you have worn treads? Worn tire treads are unreliable and can cause you to lose control of your vehicle, especially when wet. Before you hit the road, check your tire tread depth. While the simple penny test can work, it’s best to buy a tread gauge. If your tire tread reaches 2/32″, it’s time to purchase new tires. 
  2. How is your tire pressure? Overinflated or underinflated tires can spell trouble on long road trips. It’s best to keep your tire pressure just right. Look on the inside of the driver’s door for suggested tire pressure levels. 
  3. Do you see or feel bulges? Visually check out your tires for bulging and signs of uneven wear. You can also run your hand around your tire to see if anything feels off. If you detect anything questionable, contact ABS Unlimited Auto Repair for a professional pre-trip inspection. 

Make Sure to Have Pre-Trip Tire Services

Tire balancing, tire rotation, and wheel alignment are critical to your ability to steer and maneuver your vehicle. At the same time, these tire services can help extend the life of your tires. However, if you skip tire rotations, wheel alignments, and tire balancing, your tires will wear unevenly, which can help contribute to a blowout. Avoid this dangerous scenario by having tire services as needed and as suggested by the manufacturer. 

Schedule a Fluid Inspection & Have Fluid Services

Undoubtedly, oil is your vehicle’s most important fluid. It lubricates various engine parts, reduces friction, and protects your engine. While oil change is vital, it’s not the only fluid service you should have. Before you hit the road, make sure to have all of your car’s fluids inspected, including:

  • Coolant and cooling system services are vital to prevent your vehicle from overheating.
  • Brake fluid is integral to your hydraulic braking system and is the fluid that makes it work.
  • Transmission fluid is similar to oil for your transmission, lubricating various parts and ensuring the vital components work efficiently. 
  • Windshield washer fluid cleans your windshield, removing bugs and other debris.
  • Power steering fluid lubricates your vehicle’s steering system and ensures you enjoy smooth operation. 

If your mechanic tells you any of these fluids or systems need fluid services, such as a fluid exchange or fluid flush, you shouldn’t hesitate to do it. 

Check the Car Battery

The car battery is instrumental in starting your vehicle and powering your accessories. The last thing you want is for your battery to give out while you’re away from home. Instead, it’s best to have battery diagnostics performed before you hit the road. Remember, it’s cheaper to proactively test and replace the battery and any damaged cables beforehand —instead of calling a tow truck. 

Don’t Forget AC Service

In addition to the previously mentioned inspections, don’t forget to have AC service. Depending on where you’re traveling, temperatures can climb north of 100 degrees in the summer. And if you want to remain comfortable, a functioning air conditioning system is vital. Protect your air conditioning and comfort by having regular AC service at ABS Unlimited Auto Repair. 

Schedule a Full Pre-Trip Inspection at ABS Unlimited Auto Repair Today

Before you hit the road, don’t forget to schedule a pre-trip inspection at ABS Unlimited Auto Repair. Since 1987, ABS Unlimited Auto Repair has been the leading auto repair center in the Fairfax, VA area. We offer a range of automotive repair and preventative maintenance services designed to protect your vehicle and your wallet. 

Contact ABS Unlimited today in Fairfax, VA for the best pre-trip inspection. Call us today at (703)352-7770, stop by to see us at 3215 Old Picket Road in Fairfax, VA or complete our online contact form.