Essential car maintenance road trip checklist: What you need to know

Post-road trip car maintenance is essential for ensuring your vehicle’s continued reliability. Long drives can put extra strain on everything from the engine to the tyres, brakes and even suspension. Taking the time for a thorough check-up after your road trip helps catch any wear and tear before it becomes a bigger issue. 

If you want to keep your car in the best possible shape, it’s important to take care of your car before and after long road trips. It’s a chance to address any minor concerns, replenish fluids, check tyre pressure, and ensure that all systems are working as they should.


Below are five tips for post-road trip car maintenance:

While an oil change ultimately depends on your manufacturer's schedule, it's important that you check your oil level after a long road trip. If it is low, top it up or get an oil change as soon as possible. The correct oil levels are critical for your car’s performance.

Check other car fluids like coolant, brake fluids and windscreen wash.

It's generally recommended that you check your car's tyre pressure at least once a month, but it's especially important to check it after a long road trip. The extra weight and mileage on a road trip can put a lot of strain on your tyres and it’s not uncommon to find that you might need to add a little air to them after a long journey.

Also inspect the general condition of your tyres. Look at tread wear and for tyre damage like bald spots or cracks. If you drove for many kilometres, you might want to consider rotating your tyres. This helps to ensure even wear and tear.

No doubt your brakes worked overtime on that long road trip. Unlike tyres, brakes can be a little difficult to examine on your own and MotorHappy recommends you have an expert check them out for you. The brakes themselves and the brake fluid levels should be checked.

A Maintenance Plan through MotorHappy offers access to qualified motor technicians and provides coverage for specified wear and tear parts.

While this might not seem as important as some of the things above, it's also important to give your car a good wash and vacuum after a long road trip.

Clean the interior thoroughly, taking out any leftover food and vacuuming any food crumbs and dog hair. Wash the exterior to remove mud and dirt, and the bugs that accumulate on the front of your car during a road trip.

A road trip is a great way to explore different parts of the country, but it's important not to forget about your car afterward. By doing some post-trip maintenance, you can ensure that your car will stay in good condition for longer.

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