Don’t Let Car Trouble Ruin Your Holiday Travel

Automotive technicians offer advice to make sure your car is road trip ready

A record 107 million Americans will travel for the holidays — the majority of them by car.

Automotive technicians at Greenville’s McKinley Tire are seeing their fair share of customers.

“The last thing you want to do when traveling to see family is have a problem,” said Brian Cater, Manager at McKinley Tire.

Same is true down the street at Southern Quick Lube. Technician Ryan Carney is busy helping holiday travelers with tune-ups.

“It’s vital to make sure the vehicle is running properly,” said Carney.

Before you hit the road, Carney recommends getting your vehicle’s lights and battery serviced, and an all important oil change.

“If you’re on 3,000 miles worth of oil and you’re going for a 2,000 mile trip, there’s a very good possibility that oil is not up to spec,” said Carney.

With rain in the holiday forecast, techs say it’s a good idea to check wipers for cracks. And, don’t forget about tire pressure.

“Average life of a wiper blade is anywhere from 6 to 12 months,” said Cater. “When tires get down to 4/32 of tread wear, the chance of hydroplanning doubles.”

97 million cars will hit the road for holiday travel. According to AAA, that traffic volume could result in travel times by car being up to three times longer than usual.

TripAdvisor says of those planning to drive, 50% will travel up to 200 miles.

That’s why mechanics say — pack a roadside emergency kit with things like jumper cables, gloves, tape, a flashlight, flares, and pliers.

And the best advice for trouble-free travel…

“Biggest thing, do not wait until the last minute to have it checked out,” said Cater.

“If you get it done now, you preemptively get it done, most likely you’re going to save money,” said Carney.

All good steps they say to preventing a roadside breakdown and giving you peace of mind.

“It’s just going to save you the headache and is going to make sure you get where you’re going on time,” said Carney.

In all, holiday travel is up by 9% this year.  Saturday, December 23rd is predicted to be the busiest travel day of the holiday season.

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