During the summer of 1977, my family went on a three-week camping trip to the Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks. It was an idyllic trip except for two things: we all got the stomach flu and our car broke down in Wyoming. One of my most vivid memories of the whole three weeks was not seeing Old Faithful, but waiting at the car repair place while revisiting my breakfast – multi-color Trix cereal - yuck. And, my dad was freaking out because he felt sure we were going to get the “tourist” rate on the repair. But, I digress. The point is, summer vacation is just around the corner, so don’t let a visit to a far-off car repair facility be the highlight of your trip. There’s nothing worse than car problems bringing your family plans to a grinding halt in the searing heat.
Whether you are planning to tour the Rocky Mountains, trek over to Disneyworld or just drive to five different summer camps in town, take your car in for a good check-up before the heat takes hold. Go to your trusted auto repair facility and ask for a summer check-up. They should perform a multi-point inspection at no charge, focusing on wear and heat sensitive items such as:
- Your engine’s cooling system
- All belts and hoses
- Tires (for wear and alignment)
- Suspension and brakes
- Air conditioning
- All the fluids in the car
- And determine if your engine needs a tune-up
Of course, these are items that should be checked regularly throughout the year, but even more so now if your vacation is dependent on the reliability of your car. Finally, as all these items can greatly affect your gas mileage, in these times of soaring gas prices, why give away even more money than you have to at the pump?
So, here’s to a memorable (and trouble-free) summer vacation!
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