Planning For a Long Trip: Preparing My Vehicle
- Tires' air pressure. Smooth, even driving starts with your tires. Check your tire air pressure before your trip and at least once a month. NOTE: Tires should be inflated, when cool, to the vehicle manufacturer's recommendations printed on the vehicle door placard or in your vehicle's owner's manual, NOT the maximum limit stamped on a tire sidewall.1
- Air filter. Replacing a clogged air filter can improve gas mileage, which translates to real savings at the pump.
- Spark plugs. Worn or dirty spark plugs can cause misfiring, which wastes fuel - replacing these per your vehicle's owner's manual can lead to a better performing vehicle.
- Gas cap. Damaged, loose, or missing gas caps waste gas.
1 "Be Tire Smart," Rubber Manufacturer's Association
Winter Driving Tips: Tire Care in Winter Conditions
- Avoid sudden car movements; accelerate gently, turn gradually, and pump the brakes when stopping. These are ways to help the tread on your tires maintain effective traction.2
- Should you go into a skid and your car has an anti-lock braking system (ABS), apply steady pressure to the brakes and turn in the direction of the skid. Don't pump the brakes in this scenario.2
- If you get stuck in the snow, spinning your tires too fast can overheat them to the point where they will explode and cause injury. Rocking your vehicle back and forth is a better way to correct this problem. If your vehicle has ABS brakes, follow the directions in your vehicle's owner's manual.2
2 "Tire Safety," Rubber Manufacturers Association