How to Get Your Car Ready For Your Next Road Trip – General Maintenance

Cars have numerous components that need maintenance to stay in good working order, so make sure to check these parts before you hit the road.

Brake pads: Brake pads provide the friction needed to slow and stop your car. They wear away with use, becoming too thin to work effectively. Usually it's obvious when this happens due to irritating screeching or squealing noise they make. Replacing the brake pads should fix the noise and, more importantly, make your road trip safer. Depending on what your brake pads are made of and how they're used, they can last anywhere from 40,000 to 100,000 km.

Air filters: With dust, debris, and bugs everywhere, the road is a dirty place. Cars use air filters to prevent gunk from entering the engine or interior. Eventually air filters reach capacity and can become clogged, potentially impacting engine performance and fuel economy, and definitely affecting interior air quality. Air filters should be replaced about every 20,000 km, but fortunately, they're usually inexpensive and easy to change.

Light bulbs: Having a burnt out light is an easy ways to get pulled over on a drive. To check, turn on your car, switch on the headlights, make sure it's in Park, and take a walk around to see if any are burnt out. Repeat the process for the left and right turn signals. With the gear lever in still in Park, use a brick to hold the brake pedal so you can check the condition of your taillights.

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