6 Steps To Prep Your Subaru For A Road Trip

If you’re planning on taking your Subaru on a road trip, there are six essential steps to ensure your vehicle is prepared for the journey. It is always important to keep up with the recommended maintenance on your Subaru, but there are some specific items you will want to double-check before you head out on your road trip.

Essential items to have checked out before your road trip begins are; your belts and hoses, tire pressure and condition, your brake system, the condition of your battery and charging system, all of your exterior and interior lights, and the condition and level of all your vehicle’s fluids.

Read on for details about the crucial steps to prep your Subaru for a road trip, plus some general information on other services you might need to have performed. There will also be tips on items you should bring so you can be extra prepared while on the road!

Subaru road trip forrest

Essential Steps To Take Before Your Road Trip Begins

1. Check The Condition Of Your Belts And Hoses

The belts and hoses on your Subaru are made of rubber and will degrade over time. They typically are recommended to be replaced every 2 to 3 years or 30,000 to 40,000 miles. On long trips, the condition of these items needs to be very good to ensure they do not fail and leave you searching for a repair shop on your journey.  

2. Have The Tread Life And Tire Pressure Checked

The condition of your tires is very important for long trips. If there is not enough tread left on the tires and you encounter bad weather, you could have trouble controlling your Subaru. Tires with less than 3 mm of tread life left on them have a much higher chance of blowing out when running over debris on the roadway. The pressures of your tires should be set to what Subaru recommends for your specific vehicle. The correct tire pressure will usually be in your owner’s manual and noted on a placard inside your driver’s side door. Low tire pressure will give you worse fuel efficiency and cause the tires to reach a higher temperature which can result in the tires failing while driving. 

Subaru road trip sun set

3. Have Your Brake System Inspected

Having plenty of life left in your brake pads is ideal if you are going on a road trip. You will be driving longer distances than you usually would, putting extra stress on your entire brake system. Looking through the spokes in your wheels to judge how much brake pad life you have left is not enough before a road trip. Have your brakes inspected by a Subaru specialist before you start the drive.

4. Test Your Battery And Charging System

Having a battery fail at any time is a problem, but if it happens on a long journey, it can ruin the trip. You can have the condition of your battery checked by a Subaru mechanic, and it is also a good idea to have them check the voltage output of your alternator at the same time. Your alternator is what charges your battery while you are driving, and if it’s not producing the correct amount of charge, it can cause your Subaru’s battery to fail prematurely. 

Subaru road trip beach night

5. Make Sure All Exterior And Interior Lights Are Operational

The exterior lights on your Subaru are just as essential to help you see the road as they are for other vehicles to see you. Test your headlights as they are the most important lights to help you see the roadway, but be sure to test your high beams as well, as they may need to be used in extremely dark conditions. Depending on what year and model Subaru you own, there will also be amber lights on the corners or sides of your vehicle. These side markers will help other drivers see you at night. Your brake and tail lights are essential for other drivers to know when you are braking. It’s a good idea to ensure the interior lights on your vehicle are operational, as you will need them to help you find items in the car when it’s nighttime. 

6. Check The Levels And Condition Of Your Subaru’s Fluids

Ensure your vehicle’s fluid levels are checked before your road trip. This will ensure that they are full and the fluids are in good condition. It is also essential to top off your windshield washer fluid since you typically use more of it while out on the road. 

Additional Items To Check Before Your Road Trip Starts

  • Make sure the mileage you will be adding to your Subaru will not put you over the mileage you are recommended to have your next oil change. If this is the case, it is a good idea to have an oil change service performed before you leave.
  • If your Subaru is equipped with a spare tire, be sure to check the condition and pressure since it may be needed while on the road.  
  • If a roof rack is going to be used to carry luggage or bikes, ensure they are correctly secured before starting your road trip.

Extra Items To Take With You On Your Trip:

  • A tire pressure gauge is convenient to have on your trip so you can monitor the pressure in your tires. 
  • If you have room for a tire inflation device that can plug into an auxiliary power outlet or even your cigarette lighter, it is a good idea to take it with you. 
  • Having a flashlight with you on road trips is always recommended to help you see in the dark.

Final Thoughts

Road trips are an adventure that you should have fun on. Prepping your Subaru before you start your journey will ensure that you can enjoy your trip and don’t get stuck on the side of the road along the way. It is a good idea to have a Subaru specialist take a look at your vehicle so you can be sure that all of these items are in good working order and that you are ready for your road trip. If you are in the Little Rock Area, Call Us At (501) 214-1091 or Get A Quote Now!

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