Holiday travel tips: What you need to know before you go

Pristine Villarreal

At Mountain View Tire and Auto Service in Palm Desert, manager Robert Lee and his crew are working overtime getting people’s vehicles ready to drive during the holidays.

“Everybody’s quite busy trying to gear up on the road get their cars ready for their trips,” Lee said.

More than 115 million people are expected to travel 50 miles or more from their homes over the last 10 days of the year, according to the American Automobile Association.

Lee says following these simple tips could make those rides a lot smoother.

First: check your fluid levels

“Your oil dipstick, first you want to wipe it, put it back in and then check it again,” he said.

From under the hood to where the rubber meets the road, Lee says to check your tire pressure and also tire tread depth.

“Normally the driver’s door has your recommended air pressure,” he said. “Most people know the penny trick where your tread is about three. But you do want to make sure that you got good tread depth especially if you’re going to inclement weather, mountains.”

Finally, lee says take a good look at your wiper blades

“Best thing to do is shoot some water on your windshield and give them a try before you hit the road,” he said. “Sometimes they look good but when you do need them, they’re not working so well.”

Lee says being proactive could mean the difference between a smooth ride and being stuck roadside.

“If your car breaks down, I mean, it’s going to be busy everywhere you go,” he said. “As long as you prepare your car better you may not be one of those victims at a repair facility and they’re knee-deep in people.”

This story was written and reported by Kai Beech.

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