Summer is upon us! With that comes summer vacations and family road trips.
And while there is a lot of planning involved with family road trips—where you will stay, what activities you will do when you get to your destination, taking time off work, charging tablets so the kids stay entertained for at least a third of the ride—don’t forget to prepare your car for the trip!
Doing so is going to make for a much more enjoyable trip. You can enjoy the views and family time without having to worry about the car breaking down on your way out of town.
7 Steps to Get Your Family Car Ready for Summer Vacation
1. Schedule Regular Vehicle Maintenance
Following a car maintenance checklist, like the one we’ve outlined here, is a great way to keep your car in great working condition for those family road trips.
If you haven’t been keeping to a regular vehicle maintenance schedule, don’t worry! Call your local mechanic and see if he can get you in for a quick maintenance check before your trip.
At this visit, ask your mechanic to check the following areas of your car to see if anything needs to be replaced:
- Fluid levels
- Light bulbs
- Windshield wipers
- Air filter
- Belts and hoses
2. Make Sure Your Car Insurance Is Up-to-Date
While no one anticipates they will get in an accident or be pulled over on a family road trip, it can happen. Make sure your car insurance is up-to-date before you leave and that you have your information in your car.
3. Look into a Roadside Assistance Plan
We know these aren’t the fun and exciting things to add to your preparation checklist, but planning for all contingencies is important to think through. Should your car break down somewhere along the road, you may wish you had some sort of roadside assistance. Why not get it before you go?
Here are some roadside assistance options to help you decide on the best plan for your family.
4. Book an Auto Detail
You didn’t think we’d leave ourselves off this list, did you? We love helping families get ready for family trips!
Everyone wants a clean car when they travel—at least at the start of your vacation. We can provide you and your family with a clean family car for your family road trip, whether you care just about the interior or want a full auto detail so your car is clean on the inside and out.
5. Organize Your Car
Once you have a clean car, everyone wants it to stay that way…even on a family vacation. While it may seem impossible, with the proper car organization tools and steps, you can make it easier for the whole family to keep the car clean.
From adding a trash can to installing extra organization bins, you’ll be surprised what these little things can do for the overall tidiness of your car.
Get some more ideas for how to organize your car before your family road trip in our Complete Guide to Car Organization.
6. Check Your Tires
This is a step your local mechanic will likely check for you in your regular vehicle maintenance visit, but if they don’t or you want more options for tire repair and replacement, check out these tire shops in Fort Worth.
In addition to making sure your tires don’t need to be replaced or aired up, have a spare tire and the tools you need to replace a tire somewhere in your vehicle.
7. Consider Luggage Storage Options
The final step to take in preparing your family car for your trip is making sure the luggage is loaded properly.
If you’re worried about not having enough space for your family and luggage, don’t just leave your least favorite kid at home… Consider a cargo carrier you can add to the roof or the hitch of your car. Here is a list of some of the best cargo carriers.
While that may seem like a lot to coordinate, working through this list one step at a time can help you get through each task. And taking time to prepare your vehicle for your trip now is going to give you a greater experience because you know you’re driving a reliable, well-maintained family car on your trip.