Summer time is the busiest time of the year as people take to the roadways for vacation and enjoyment. The last stretch of summer is upon us. Many parents and young adults are preparing for “back to school.” Whether your student is driving to high school for the first time, or a student heading out on your first solo road trip back to college, Osceola Garage wants to make sure your student’s trip is stress-free, and your car is ready to get you there.
Here are some important pre-trip and on-the-road tips you can share with your young driver heading back to school (and maybe a few reminders to help your car as well).
- Freshen your fluids – making sure the fluids in your vehicle are full will go a long way for the longevity of your car. Change the oil, oil filter, air filter, coolant top off/flush.
- Have your air conditioner tested and inspected, along with belts and hoses.
- Check your tires – make sure the tread is in good shape, properly inflated, and the wear pattern is within normal range. Read more about tire safety here.
- Lights check – headlights, brake lights, and turn signals should all be in working condition, and headlight beam angle should be checked.
- Test your car battery – it’s a lot easier to replace a battery before a trip than replacing a dead one on the side of the road.
- Have the brakes inspected, along with the steering components.
- Don’t overpack the car – it’s tempting to fill every nook and cranny, but this poses extra risks for blind spots and can even reduce gas mileage and wear on the suspension depending on the weight. Share the load between vehicles if possible, or plan to buy some items once you arrive.
- Plan your route – map out your main route and identify resting and eating stops. You should also become familiar with alternate routes in case construction, or inclement weather conditions make it necessary for you to take a detour.
- Check on your car’s emergency roadside safety kit.
- Replace wiper blades once a year.
- Charge your cell phone and keep emergency contacts in your glove box.
- Get a good night’s sleep before any long trip.
- Always have a full tank of fuel before leaving on a long road trip and never go below half a tank.
- Join a roadside assistance program (Osceola Garage offers free roadside assistance for all its customers)
- If you use EZ Pass, make sure it’s properly mounted, double check your account for a positive balance, and registered license plates before you leave.
On the Road Tips:
- Buckle Up
- Don’t Text & Drive
- Take Breaks for eating and to stretch your legs.
- Remember to lock up! College campuses and surrounding cities are not as safe a parent’s driveway. Remember not to leave your phone or laptop in your car and to always lock the car before going inside.
- Park Safely – park in a well-lit area, away from shrubs and bushes. Keep your keys in hand ready to enter the vehicle. Back in, if possible, for easier exiting.
- If you or your student need to pull over for an emergency, you should try to stop in a well-lit area with high foot traffic. If you’re on the highway, pull over as far off the road as possible. Put on your hazards and call your roadside assistance carrier and wait inside your car with the doors locked.
College Bound is a new and exciting adventure, but parting with your student can be exciting and terrifying at the same time. Make this new chapter of your life a bit easier by knowing your college student is safe because at Osceola Garage we are aware nothing means more to you than the safety of your family. That’s why we treat our customers like our family and make sure each car serviced by us, is covered with our free 24-hour roadside assistance.
Stay safe and have fun!