Breaking News
More () »

AAA recommends getting your car checked before that holiday road trip

With so many drivers working from home for so long, vehicles may have been neglected.

About 34 million people say they’re ready to hit the road this Memorial Day weekend and two million of them are right here in Florida. 

And after a year of quarantining due to COVID who could blame them? But you'll want to check on your car before you start your trip.

“Well I think you should definitely check out your car before you take off,” said Patricia Tracy, planning a long-awaited holiday weekend in Treasure Island.

Before she hits the road, she plans to give her wheels a full once over.

“Walk around the car, look at the tires,” said Tracy. “Make sure nothing is flat, you know, or soft.”

AAA says that’s good advice.

With so many drivers working from home for so long, vehicles, they say, may have been neglected.

So, unfortunately, they’re predicting as many as 468,000 roadside rescues this holiday weekend.

“With the pandemic, it’s been a long year. And a lot of these vehicles have probably been sitting in the driveway more than they have been on the roadway,” said AAA Spokesman Mark Jenkins. “And we’re concerned that they’ve been neglected.”

The auto club recommends bringing your vehicle to a reputable mechanic for a checkup before hitting the road to test the battery, top off or replace oil and other fluids.

But perhaps most important, after all this time, is checking the air pressure of your tires.

“The big concern with underinflated tires is they are a big contributor to blowouts,” said Jenkins. “You’re driving down the highway at a high rate of speed and suddenly have a blowout, that’s a recipe for disaster.”

AAA operates its own car care locations but says they’re happy to recommend a reputable mechanic from a list of more than seven thousand they work with.

It’s well worth it, they say, to make sure those holiday plans don’t get sidelined.

“The last place you want to spend your holiday is on the roadside,” said Jenkins. “And that could be the place that a lot of people spend our holiday if they haven’t maintained that vehicle properly.”

Something else AAA recommends considering before you hit the road, especially if you have young children is checking those kid car seats to make sure they’re still buckled down properly.

What other people are reading right now:

►Breaking news and weather alerts: Get the free 10 Tampa Bay app

Stay In the Know! Sign up now for the Brightside Blend Newsletter