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Summer will be here soon, and with it will come that classic American institution: the road trip. Everyone will want to get out of the house go somewhere—anywhere but home. Make some plans to do just that this summer and explore the country. Mingle with the people, see the sights, and make new memories with your family members and friends. Before you hit the road, you need to make sure your vehicle is in good shape. You don’t want to find out your transmission isn’t working 500 miles from home. Take some time to inspect the major spots, and have a mechanic look at the rest. Here is some of the most essential car maintenance before a road trip.

Change the Oil

You should be changing your oil every three months or every 3,000 miles regardless, but you’ll certainly want to do so before you hit the road. If you go to a quick-lube place, they’ll also check all the other fluids for you—such as the washer fluid, power steering fluid, and transmission fluid—and top them off if necessary.

Check the Tires

Get down on your knees and give all four tires a good check. Check the tread depth, wear, and air pressure. Once you inspect all those, check out the spare tire, too. A flat tire is only a problem if your spare is flat, too. Balancing and aligning the tires might be a good idea, too. Come to an RNR tire store in Charleston, SC, and we can inspect your tires for you.

Get a Complete Tune-Up

Take your vehicle to a trusted mechanic and have them do a total tune-up. They’ll replace the plugs, wires, and filters and check the transmission. A good mechanic will give you a complete list of all serious and minor problems and advise what they should address immediately and what can wait.

Check All the Lights

Check the headlights, taillights, and blinkers on the car. By law, all lights on a vehicle must function. Driving at night becomes more difficult when you only have one working headlight, and drivers behind you can’t see one taillight as well as two. If any of your lights aren’t working, a local police officer may hand you a ticket for your trouble.

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