Friday, December 14, 2012

411 PAIN - Tis the Holiday Season

 411 PAIN - Tis the Holiday Season


Tis the season for travelers to hit the road in record numbers.
But your holiday road trip doesn't have to be ruined by hidden hazards.
If you're proactive,  your travels can be safe and fun.
Begin by getting your vehicle road trip ready with a check-up.


No matter what you drive, car, s-u-v, mini-van, or truck, the basic checkpoints are the same.
Experts recommend that drivers have the fluid levels  ( oil, coolant, and brake) all assessed.
The list of fluids includes engine oil, transmission fluid, gasoline, antifreeze, radiator coolant,
brake fluid, windshield washer fluid and power steering fluid. If they are low, replenish them, if they are old replace them.
The same goes for the fluid sources that have filters.  The filters need to be examined and possibly replaced.


Belts and hoses need the same type attention.  Any sign of wear and tear they should be replaced.
If they are loose they should be tightened.
Make sure your battery is either new or fully charged. 


Tires are next.  First check the wear and tear on the treads.  It can be done with a tire gauge or with a coin.  Slip the coin down
in the tread, if you can see the top of the President's head, it's time for new tires.  You want good traction
whatever the climate on whatever roads you may travel. Experts call the tires "the the most important safety devices on your car next to the brakes."  And speaking of the brakes, it's important to have an automobile expert inspect your cars brake pads, they may be worn and you don't know it.  Never travel without a spare tire and the tools you need to change a flat or damaged wheel (jack, lug wrench, flares).


Check and change your windshield wiper blades where needed. It also doesn't hurt to test the head lights, tail lights and signal lights and
replace any and all  burned out bulbs.
Luggage should be carefully loaded into the vehicle. Poor weight distribution and overloading the vehicle with
too many heavy objects can weigh on your gas mileage.


Finally make sure you have a roadside emergency kit.   Consumer reports says that kit should include
a working cellphone, fire extinguisher,  and an actual first aid kit to treat wounds and injuries.
Joining an auto club like Triple-A (American Automobile Association) is always a good idea.

So, fill up that gas tank and get a car wash, cleaner cars get better gas mileage. Most of all have a safe trip.

For more of the latest information on driving safety and accident statistics, visit the 411-Pain Blogs. Robert Lewin, owner of 1-800-411-Pain, reminds you not to drink and drive and to always wear your seat belt.