CHARLOTTE, N.C. (December 21, 2018) – AAA Carolinas expects roughly 4.25 million Carolinians to travel by car to their holiday destinations this year. To help keep everyone safe behind the wheel, AAA Carolinas is offering driving tips and information to get your vehicle road trip ready.
“Our Car Care Centers have been very busy helping motorists get their vehicles road-trip ready,” said Dave Parsons, AAA Carolinas CEO and President. “Once your vehicle is ready to hit the road, we want to remind everyone to make smart decisions behind the wheel. Buckle up, don’t drink and drive and avoid driving distracted.”
Getting your Vehicle Road Trip Ready:
Consider the phrase “Flower Power”
Fuel — Broken fuel pumps and fuel lines, as well as clogged fuel filters and injectors, can leave you stranded just as surely as not topping off the tank at that “last-service-for-100-miles” station.
Lights — For better visibility, consider switching to high-intensity halogen headlights and clear up hazed or cloudy headlight lenses.
Oil — Motor oil matters, so be sure to purchase a high-quality oil that meets the requirements of your vehicle’s manufacturer— it’s cheap insurance.
Water — If your car is less than four years old, just check that the under-hood coolant reservoir is topped off (use the same coolant type as is already in the engine, not plain water). Check all hoses for bulges or blisters.
Electrical — If your battery is more than four years old, consider replacing it. Headlights that dim or flicker at idle could be an early warning sign. Also look for loose and corroded battery terminals or cable clamps.
Rubber — Keep tires rotated, aligned and inflated per your vehicle manufacturer’s specs; change the wiper blades so you’re ready for summer rains; and inspect belts for cracks, glazing and proper tension. For a list of AAA Car Care Centers throughout the Carolinas, visit this site.
Before hitting the road:
-Ensure your vehicle is properly maintained. Check the battery life, engine coolant and tire pressure.
-Map your route in advance. Have the directions printed out or designate a passenger to be in charge of phone directions to avoid the distraction behind the wheel.
-Consider leaving earlier or later to avoid heavy traffic.
-Keep anything of value in the trunk or hidden in the car so that it is not visible through the windows.
-If you’re traveling with children, remind them not to talk to strangers on your pit-stops and accompany them to restrooms during stops.
-Have roadside assistance contact information on hand, in case an incident occurs on the road.
-Keep a cell phone (fully charged) safely secured in your vehicle for emergency calls.
-Have an emergency kit complete with water, medicine, snacks, jumper cables and a first aid kit.
During the trip:
-Never drive distracted. Put the phone away. Disconnect and Drive. Avoid behaviors such as eating, applying make-up and adjusting the navigation system while driving.
-Always wear your seatbelt.
-Don’t speed. Drive according to the weather and road conditions.
-With rain forecasted in some parts of the Carolinas, use caution when driving on wet roads:
-Avoid cruise control (when driving in wet conditions, the chance of losing control of the vehicle increases in cruise control mode)
-Slow down and leave room. Avoid hard braking or turning sharply and give yourself ample stopping distance between cars by increasing the following distance.
-If you feel your car begin to skid, continue to look and steer in the direction in which you want the car to go and avoid slamming on the brakes as this will upset balance.
-Expect heavy traffic and delays, as the roads will be busy. Avoid road rage by using turn signals, maintaining a good distance behind the vehicle in front of you and never engaging in interactions with other drivers. Exercise patience and understanding.
-Never drink and drive or get in a vehicle with a driver who has been drinking.
-Obey the Move Over Law when passing emergency vehicles on the side of the road.
AAA Carolinas, an affiliate of the American Automobile Association, is a not-for-profit organization that serves more than 2.1 million members and the public with travel, automobile and insurance services while being an advocate for the safety and security of all travelers.
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