To make your Thanksgiving road trip memorable, be prepared for any eventuality by prepping your car for the long drive. The weather is cooler and unpredictable, so take the time to pack a few road trip essentials. Here are some tips to get your car ready for your next adventure.
Check Your Tires
It’s important to check your tires any time you head out on the road. It’s even more important before a Thanksgiving road trip when cold weather makes the roads icy and snowy depending on where you live.
Make sure the treads aren’t worn and double-check the air pressure. Cooler temps reduce the air pressure in your tires — even if they were perfectly inflated in August, they may be low now. Also, ensure your lug nuts are nice and tight before you set out.
Check the Wiper Blades
Give your wiper blades a visual inspection to see if they’re in good condition with no rips or missing bits of rubber. If the wipers look good but streak when you turn them on, then it’s time for replacements. While you’re at it, make sure there’s plenty of washer fluid, too.
Keep Your Car Clean
Kids aren’t the neatest little creatures, so traveling with family can get messy. Chances are high they’ll leave a trail of snacks and manage a few spills on themselves and the car.
Make cleanup easier by packing a few key items, including baby wipes for sticky hands and faces, shop towels for sopping up larger spills and a small cloth towel for drying off. Pack a little trash bag, too, so the floor of your car doesn’t end up looking like the town dump.
It’s always a good idea to have a first aid kit, especially on road trips where the nearest store might be many exits down the road. If you already have a first aid kit, then make sure it’s fully stocked. If not, then you should buy one before your trip.
Jumper cables are good to have on hand in case you run into battery troubles, as are road flares in case you break down. Those who are packing lots of luggage, especially if you’re using the roof, should add extra tie-downs and rope to the packing list to keep everything secure.
The trick to taking a relaxing Thanksgiving road trip is being prepared. Checking key maintenance items and packing a few essentials before you go will ensure your Thanksgiving road trip is one everyone enjoys.
Check out all the safety and maintenance products available on NAPA online or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information about trailer wiring connectors, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Nicole Wakelin covers the automotive industry as a freelance journalist for a variety of outlets. Her work includes news pieces, podcasts, radio, written reviews, and video reviews. She can be found in The Boston Globe, CarGurus, BestRide, US News and World Report, and AAA along with lifestyle blogs like Be Car Chic, The Other PTA, and She Buys Cars. She is active on social media with a large following on both Twitter and Instagram and currently serves as Vice President of the New England Motor Press Association.