As of now, schools are out for the season, and after a long wet season, it’s finally Summertime in the Puget Sound area! For those of us that have been juggling work and getting back to to office, this couldn’t come soon enough. Hopefully you have taken some time and planned a Summer vacation! And if your vacation plans includes your Subaru, here are somethings to consider, since there’s just no such thing as a welcome surprise with your Subaru on a Summer road trip.
We want to help you get to your destination and back trouble free! Here are some tips to help you have a successful road trip in your Subaru.
- Be sure to check your tires and don’t forget about the spare! Any tire at or below 2/32 of an inch of tread life remaining needs replacement. Make sure your tire pressures are set to correct levels. This is a good idea all year around, but making sure all 5 are set at proper levels before prolonged road time is crucial to safety.
- Rain in Summer can cause more accidents than it does during Winter. This is because the heat of the Summer sun releases oils out of the road materials and onto the road, while the rain makes it that much more slick. This goes back to making sure the tires on your Subaru are in good shape, but even the best tires need a responsive Driver. During the Summer months road construction also increases and you need to be cautious of that when traveling.
- If you don’t know when the last time your Subaru had a wheel alignment, there is no time like the present.
- Check all of your fluids and change as needed! During summer months fluids are at more risk of evaporation and breaking down under extreme temperatures. This can be especially true for brake fluid! If it has collected enough moisture, it can actually boil during heavy brake use, like coming down a mountain pass with a full load of family and gear. Brake fluid is required to be changed every 15,000 miles or 15 months.
- Carry a jug of coolant, or at least water to be on the safe side. The anti-boil property of Coolant can be put to the test during a long trip up a mountain pass, so making sure the proper mix of Ethylene Glycol to water is just as important in the Summer as it is in the Winter.
- Don’t forget about windshield washer solvent! Bugs on the windshield are tough to remove without cleaner. It’s also a good idea whenever you stop to refuel, that you scrub the windshield at the gas station as well using the fancy tool and the dirty water.
- Make sure you check that the AC is functioning properly before venturing out. While it may have been 60 degrees in Seattle when you left, temperatures in sunny California or even just Eastern Washington may be in the 80’s or 90’s. If you are traveling with a pet this is also very important to be able to control the cabin temperature.
- When you begin to pack for your road trip, be sure you don’t overload your Subaru! Be mindful of how the load is being distributed if possible. It’s also a good idea to be sure that you can see out of all of the windows and if not, be comfortable using just the side view mirrors.
- If you are planning on towing anything with your Subaru, please understand just how much, or in reality, how little your Subaru can tow. Keep in mind your passenger & cargo in your Subaru when contemplating how much your going to put in a tow behind trailer.
- If you have a CVT Transmission, and plan on carrying a heavier load, or even doing some lite towing or off-roading, it would be advantageous to the life of the transmission to service the fluid. We are all aware that Subaru CVT’s can be a bit sensitive, and under “normal” service conditions, is not suppose to need service. If you check your owners manual, there is a “severe service” section that states under towing or off-roading, the fluid should be changed every 24,500 miles.
- It goes without saying that if you bring the family dog on the trip you never leave him or her in the car unattended for long, and never without the windows down enough for fresh air. Both you and the dog will need extra water so plan accordingly.
Remember – if you are due for scheduled maintenance, and if some of that may fall in the middle or end of your road trip, there is no penalty for doing your Subaru maintenance early.
While road trips can be a stressful undertaking, the good news is if you service your Subaru with us, your most likely you are ready to go. However, a quick call or email to see if there was anything we were monitoring on your Subaru, can also go a long way to avoiding surprises.
If you are not local to us; hopefully you have a good relationship with Your Subaru service shop, and can obtain that information as well. Below is a link if you need to schedule any service or repair.
Thanks for reading and we wish you safe Summer travels!