Is your vehicle ready?

Packing a vehicle for a trip illustration

Summer road trips can create ever-lasting memories. Make sure those memories are positive by checking for potential issues suggested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) before you start your journey.


NHTSA’s Recalls Look-up Tool lets you enter your vehicle identification number (VIN) to quickly learn if your vehicle has a critical safety issue that has not been repaired and how to get that repair done for free. You can also download NHTSA’s SaferCar app and enter your vehicle and equipment information. You will get an alert on your phone if a recall is issued.


Ensure each tire is filled to the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended inflation pressure, listed in your owner’s manual, and on a placard located on the driver’s door pillar or door frame. Don’t forget to check your spare if your vehicle has one. Do not inflate your tires to the pressure listed on the tire itself. That number is the maximum pressure the tire can hold, not the recommended pressure for your vehicle. Underinflation is the leading cause of tire failure.


High temperatures accelerate the rate at which rubber belts and hoses degrade. Look under the hood and inspect all belts and hoses to make sure there are no signs of bulges, blisters, cracks, or cuts in the rubber. It’s best to replace them now if they show noticeable wear. While you’re at it, make sure all hose connections are secure.


Make sure you have enough coolant in your vehicle and that the coolant meets the manufacturer’s specifications. You or a mechanic should check the cooling system for leaks, test the coolant, and drain or replace the old coolant as needed.


Check your vehicle’s oil level periodically. If it’s time or nearly time to change the oil, now would be a good time to do it. Also, check the following fluid levels: brake, automatic transmission or clutch, power steering, and windshield washer. Make sure each reservoir is full. If you see any signs of fluid leakage, take your vehicle in to be serviced.


Have a mechanic check your battery and charging system and make any necessary repairs or replacements.


Check your headlights, brake lights, turn signals, emergency flashers, and interior lights. Be sure also to check your trailer lights and signals, if necessary.

Music is key for road trips!

The right music is key to a successful road trip. Here are some suggestions to get you started on your playlist:

  • I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles), THE PROCLAIMERS
  • Don’t Stop Believin’, JOURNEY
  • Cruel Summer, TAYLOR SWIFT
  • Bohemian Rhapsody, QUEEN
  • Born to Be Wild, STEPPENWOLF
  • Life is a Highway, RASCAL FLATTS
  • All Star, SMASH MOUTH
  • Africa, TOTO
  • Hotel California, EAGLES
  • Free Fallin’, TOM PETTY
  • Sweet Caroline, NEIL DIAMOND
  • American Pie, DON MCLEAN
  • Livin’ on a Prayer, BON JOVI
  • Carry on Wayward Son, KANSAS
  • You Make My Dreams (Come True), HALL & OATES
  • Bennie and the Jets, ELTON JOHN
  • Thunderstruck, AC/DC