Car-Care Tips For College-Bound Drivers

Whether your student is heading back to college after the summer break or just graduated and heading off to college as a freshman; it is important that they take care of their vehicle's maintenance before they hit the road to ensure a safe arrival this fall. 

College students are often so busy getting to and from classes they forget to take care of their car’s basic needs. Which is why now is the best time to get all of their annual car care done before classes begin. 

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Here are a few basic tips that you can help your college student get done or (if you’re looking to give them their first taste of independence) you can just hand this off to them to take care of - 

#1 - Two Weeks before they Leave 

Schedule your college student’s car inspection at least two weeks before they head off to school; because if the shop finds a more major repair it could take up to two weeks to get a part to complete it. 

#2 - Oil & Filter 

During that car checkup have the engine oil and filter changed, and tires rotated and balanced. While they are taking care of that it might be worth having the fuel and air filters replaced depending, all other engine fluids topped off or replaced, and a full tune-up depending on the age of the car and when this was done last. 

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Come to Sherwood Auto Repair for oil and filter change and know that we will do it right. 

#3 - Car Battery 

If the car battery is about 4 years old, have it replaced before they leave. 

#4 - Hoses & Belts 

Replace old hoses and belts. Over time and with wear and tear, hoses and belts become dry and brittle. You want to avoid having a belt or hose break while your student is on the road as serious engine damage could result. 

#5 - Prepare for Rain 

This is the Pacific Northwest so make sure to have the wiper blades changed and replace any lights that aren’t working. If there’s a crack in the windshield, have it fixed or replaced. You don’t want them driving in the fall & winter wet seasons without good visibility. 

#6 - Emergency Kit 

Prepare an Emergency Kit for the vehicle and include a flashlight, disposable camera, a first-aid kit, jumper cables, flares, water bottles, and extra windshield washer fluid. Also, make sure they know where their flashers are and that the vehicle has a tire jack and a spare tire that is in good condition. 

#7 - Tires

Check the air pressure in all the tires. Also, inspect the tread depth and condition of the tires. If they show excessive or uneven wear, have them replaced. 

#8 - Back to Basics 

Make sure your student knows where their car manual is and how to check their own oil. You want to make sure they know the basics so that if they do have a light come on while they’re away, that they know how to assess the issue themselves if they can’t get it straight to the shop. 

When you need a shop that will take good care of your student and their vehicle during the school year and beyond! We’ll make sure that their car is ready for school. 

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