Itís that time of year again, school has started, or will soon for most grade school children which means that the collegians of your household will be heading out the door
, jumping in their car and heading off to their dorms. It was just the other day that you put them on the bus to kindergarten now, they are off on their own. How do you know for sure though that the car that your child is getting in is safe, reliable and ready to take the abuse
gentle wear of a college studentís life style? Nothing is for certain, but taking precautions to make sure that your child is taken care of is the best you can do for them.
- Get a tune-up. Your kidís car may be running just fine right now, and the easiest way to keep it that way is to continue regular maintenance: oil change, fuel and air filter replacement, valve adjustment, spark plug inspection and replacement, tire rotation and balance, fluid top-off and visual inspection at your dealership.
- Replace your wiper blades. If you havenít done this in a while, go ahead and take care of this now. There is no reason to wait until your kid is stuck in the middle of a monsoon with wiper blades that are scratching the windshield and making visibility blurry at best.
- Replace old parts. Make sure that all belts, hoses and other parts that can deteriorate under harsh conditions are in sustainable shape. Doing this can help avoid disaster.
- Check the battery. A visit to your dealer or local parts store can ensure that the battery is fully charged and ready to go for all those late night library tips.
- Put replacement bulbs for all lights in the trunk. One of the easiest ways to get pulled over is a burnt out light. Having a stock of lights can prevent this, and confusion for your student as to what their car needs.
- Test brakes and tires. One of the most important safety features on a car is its brakes, ensure that they can work to their full capacity by checking to see if there is any squealing or squeaking or if they are taking longer than usual to slow down. If you are unsure their condition- call Vista Volkswagen and ask them to check your brake pads- they can help. Replacing just the brake pads is much cheaper than waiting until the car needs a full brake job.
- Pack an emergency kit. Make sure the kit includes a flashlight (with extra batteries), tow rope, a first aid kit, flares, tire jack and a spare tire.
- Donít forget the jumper cables. You never know when rushing into a test, your student could forget to turn their lights of, and having jumper cables will be a huge relief when the exit- ready to celebrate their ďaceĒ- only to find a dead battery. A kind helper and few minutes and its back to the books for them!