It’s almost that time of year. Lots and lots of us will be hitting the road to a friend’s or relative’s house for Thanksgiving or other holiday celebrations.
Therefore, having your car or truck checked before you go on a road trip is a whole lot easier than dealing with a breakdown on the freeway or getting stranded in unknown surroundings with a flat tire. No one wants to spend precious time waiting for a repair that could have been prevented when you could be at Grandma’s house eating pumpkin pie.
Before Going to Grandma’s House
Here are a few simple things that you can check. Make sure your vehicle isn’t due for an oil change and visually check your belts and hoses for cracking or irregular wear.
Other inspections call for someone trained in what to look for as well as having the capability to raise your car up off the ground. Some of these inspections include having your brake pads and/or shoes inspected for wear, and having your brake fluid level and brake hoses checked.
Your battery and tire tread are also important items to make note of.
Postle Tire Barn offers free road-ready inspections for most vehicles including free tire, brake and front end insepections. Our complimentary service includes the following:
We look for defects, signs of cracking or bulging in the sidewall and tread wear. If you’ve bumped against curbs or hit a pothole hard, there can be damage that has weakened the tire’s structure. Sometimes it’s obvious, like a bubble on the sidewall. Sometimes not so much, like wear issues from not rotating tires regularly. We also check your spare to make sure you can rely on it if you need to.
Tire Pressure Check
We check air pressure and adjust tire inflation, as needed. This is one of the most-important things you can do to prevent a tire failure and have the traction you need whether you’re traveling by yourself, with a car full of kids, or pulling a trailer or load. Proper inflation will also extend your tires’ tread life and help achieve the best gas mileage.
Visual Wheel Alignment Inspection
We look for signs of irregular tire wear that may mean your vehicle is out of alignment. We also check for loose or worn parts of the suspension that could be indicators of alignment problems.
Visual Inspection of Steering Components
We put your vehicle up on a rack and spend a good deal of time looking at key parts of your steering system.
Visual Inspection of Brake Components
Along with tires, your braking system is another crucial part of your vehicle’s safety equipment. Here’s a description of your brake system components. While your car is on the lift, we remove the wheels for a good look at the following:
- Calipers (the unit that contains your brake pads) – Check for loose or missing bolts and confirm that hardware attachments are intact.
- Brake Rotors/Drums – Look at the rotor for “hot spots,” places where overheated brakes have created a hard spot on the rotor. Make sure there are no hairline cracks or chunks missing.
- Brake Pads/Shoes – Measure the thickness of the braking material using a brake gauge.
- Brake Hose and Hardware – Make sure the rubber isn’t cracked or swollen, ABS wires aren’t damaged and are attached properly, and all hardware is in place.
- Master Cylinder (the unit that generates the braking power) – Inspect for leaking fluid. Make sure the brake fluid level is proper.
Visual Inspection of Shocks and/or Struts
We look for fluid leakage, worn bushings (rubber or plastic parts connecting some of the suspension to the vehicle frame) and dings in the body of shocks. We look for obvious cracks in springs and check for intact dust boots, the covers that protect the strut from moisture, salt and grime.
If you have any concerns regarding your vehicle’s travel worthiness, call or come by Postle Tire Barn in Tuscaloosa on Jug Factory Road behind McDonalds. We’ve been assisting our customers with making their vehicle’s road-ready for more than 34 years. For more information feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.