It’s no fun to get your car towed. It might feel like a big help but the process puts a lot of strain on your car since there’s more stress on the powertrain and brakes. It’s better to avoid needing a tow when you are going on a long drive and here are 10 ways to do it.
1. Have your car regularly tuned up.
New cars don’t need as much tuning up as older cars but if yours is more than two years old, you’ll need to get it tuned up every 6 months. A tune-up will involve a thorough inspection of the car’s mechanisms. It includes replacing the spark plugs, fluids, hoses, belts, and other parts that can wear out and impact the car’s power and performance, as well as the fuel consumption. This way, you won’t run into a car trouble in the middle of the road. You definitely must have the car tuned up at least a week before you leave if you’re planning a major road trip.
2. Never forget to fill the tank.
Getting the tank filled up may be the most sensible thing to do if you’re a car owner. However, some drivers still forget or deliberately ignore the fuel light when it comes on so they risk the need for a towing service.
It’s only sensible to refuel every few days so that your car won’t stall in the middle of the road. More than that, according to Australian car enthusiasts, you’re going to eventually do more damage to the fuel pump and tank, air conditioning system, brakes, and power steering when you keep using a car that’s low on fuel.
3. Always check your car before going out.
Always check the vital systems of your car to ensure that these are in good working order before you drive anywhere. Pay particular attention to the tyre pressure, as soft tyres are prone to punctures or bursts. Check the engine oil for signs of build-up as well to avoid an overheating engine. It should be translucent or slightly yellow if it’s in good condition. This should be a good habit to practice regardless if you’re going for a short or long drive.
4. Give your car a check when you’re getting petrol.
Aside from checking your car before heading out, take the time to look at it when you stop for petrol. You have to ensure that it is functioning well so you won’t have to worry about stalling or getting into an accident on the road.
Get your dirty and dusty windshield cleaned, too so you’ll see the road better. Replace the wipers if it’s not effectively displacing water. These dry out and crack when they’re worn out, and it might make your driving challenging if it’s raining or snowing.
5. Top up on the coolant.
The coolant helps the engine from overheating and if it’s low, you’ll normally see the warning light glow on the dashboard or find steam emitting from the hood. You won’t be able to drive much further once this happens. You’ll have no choice but to pull over by the side of the road and call for help from a towing service. Avoid this situation by checking your coolant and then filling it up as needed.
While you’re at it, you should top up on the brake fluid and transmission fluid. Also, check the water level on the radiator. Cars rely on fluids and lubricants to run well. Your car will deteriorate faster if you keep forgetting to refill these essentials.
6. Test the lights and the horn.
Working lights are necessary for a safe drive, and not just at night so be sure to check your turn signals, parking lights, headlights, and taillights. It’s an accident risk to drive with a blown out light, and cops might also pull you over for a warning or a ticket.
Access the back of the light assembly if you have to replace the bulb. You will need to unscrew a few bolts for this simple job. Get the light indicators on your dashboard fixed if they’re busted. While you’re there, honk the horn to ensure that it’s working. You can make some adjustments if it’s too loud or too soft. Look into your car’s manual and study the mechanisms to do this right.
7. Know how to change the tyres.
Knowing how to change a flat tyre is a quite useful skill to have if you drive a lot since you can’t always conveniently find a tyre mechanic’s shop on the road. You also won’t have to call a towing service for help if you can handle it yourself.
Learning this skill is so accessible these days with the help of the Internet. Just search for tutorial videos on YouTube then practice changing a tyre at home.
8. Change the batteries as required.
Are there days when your car seems to have a hard time getting started? It might be time to replace the battery, as the one you have could be old and unreliable. You don’t want to have the car die on you when you’re in the middle of nowhere.
9. Drive defensively.
Obviously, you need to learn to drive defensively so as not to crash with another car and have to call a tow truck for help. Sometimes, towing services might still have to tow your car if there’s a perceived risk even if the damage to your car is minimal.
Always keep a safe distance from the car in front and behind you. Learn to adjust your speed, depending on the road conditions. Be on the alert at the wheel because accidents can strike anytime and anywhere.
10. Don’t leave your keys inside the car.
Avoid needlessly calling for a towing service just because you left your keys inside a locked car. Make a spare copy of the car keys, and let your family members or a trusted friend know where it’s kept.
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At the very least, you should have an emergency kit stashed at the trunk of your car that has the right tools and supplies for emergencies. This may include a flashlight, road flares, blanket, jumper cables, and a first aid kit.
Need help with your vehicle? We provide general towing services, roadside assistance, truck towing, and vehicle recovery. Contact Newcastle Towing and Transport for more information.