Holiday Travel and Your Vehicle
November 19th, 2016
It’s projected that about 100 million Americans will be on the highways for the holidays this year. If your car is among them, doesn’t it make sense to make sure everything’s good to go for the trip? Here’s a brief checklist:
Oil change: Having your oil changed at regular intervals is still the single best way to ensure the most number of miles out of your vehicle. Synthetic oil should be changed at about 10-12,000 miles, while conventional oil can be changed at a 5,000 mile interval. Which conveniently brings us to our next point…
Tire rotation: No vehicle has 50/50 weight distribution from front to rear, and the front tires are subject to different stresses due to cornering and the shift in weight and momentum that comes with braking. That’s why tire rotation is such a necessity, to ensure even tire wear (and it’s also required for tire warranty coverage). Tire rotation should be done every 5,000 miles…if your vehicle’s off the ground and on a rack for an oil change already, it makes perfect sense to have both jobs done at the same time.
Cooling system service: Your cooling system does more than prevent against boilovers in hot weather. It also prevents the system from freezing up in winter, with a 50/50 mix of distilled water and antifreeze. The coolant contains anti-corrosion agents to prevent the buildup of scale deposits in the radiator and water pump, but it still needs to be flushed at regular intervals (depending on manufacturer’s specs) and refilled with fresh coolant. Remember that your heater core is part of the cooling system, and a cooling system flush will help the heater work more efficiently as well.
Safety items: Don’t take them for granted! This includes your headlights, taillights, glass, and wipers. The wipers are particularly important since even good-quality wipers only last about a year before the elements take their toll on them. When you change the wiper blades, remember to also top off the windshield washer fluid reservoir.
At Miracle Tire and Total Car Care in Boise, ID, we want you to have a safe and happy Christmas season, regardless of your travel plans. Make an appointment with us before you hit the road!