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3 Things To Check On Your Toyota Prius Before A Road Trip

Thinking of heading out this weekend in your Prius? Here are some reasons to check the basics before hitting the road for travel.

When it comes to modern cars, most of us rarely have to think about anything other than getting on the road and starting down the asphalt. The vehicles we drive these days are better built, but they still require us to check on a few things.

This article is not for you if you know how to check your car for a road trip. If you would like some helpful tips on maximizing your experience and maybe learning a thing or two about your vehicle. Take a look at my three suggestions for a safe and enjoyable road trip.

Tip One: Check Your Tire Pressure
It may seem obvious to some but checking your tire pressure is something many do not think about. When driving a Prius, tire pressure is significant for fuel economy.

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The great thing is you do not even have to do it yourself. Many tire places are more than happy to help ensure your tires are correctly inflated for a comfortable and fuel-efficient road trip.

Pro-Tip: Thinking of taking more people with you and luggage? Air the tires up to max psi. You will help keep your fuel economy up and counter for the additional load. Once you are done and return home, drop that psi for a more comfortable and safer ride.

Tip Two: Under Hood Check
It does not matter if your car has 2 miles or 200,000 miles on it; you need to check under your hood. Check the engine oil level, the air filter, and coolant.

Engine oil is critical to keeping you moving down the road. I have yet to find one person who enjoys being broken down on the side of the road. Checking the essential fluids and ensuring they are at the proper level can significantly reduce the risk of a potential breakdown.

Pouring oil into a car engine

Knowing what levels your fluids are at and where they need to be can save you from potentially costly repairs or alert you if something does not seem right. Most quick lube places are also willing to check the basics for you too.

Pro Tip: If you hate paying for windshield wiper fluid, try buying the concentrate. I have leftover bottles that I used to make my own wiper fluid. When I get ready for a long trip, I can make some and toss it if for a lot less than paying for it at the store.

Tip Three: Clean Your Prius
This one may seem very superficial but hear me out. Starting out in a clean car can help you feel less stressed and anxious on the road. Locating all your essential information like the registration, insurance proof, and other things can help alleviate stress.

Cleaning out the car may yield some unexpected results too. Every time I clean out my car, I usually find some loose change or other stuff that had fallen out of my pocket. In some cases cleaning out your ride can and help rid it of odors too.

Pro Tip: If you want free vacuums, many places that offer a drive-through car wash tunnel will also provide garbage cans and free vacuuming services. An added bonus is they probably sell air-fresheners too.

These tips are for any car user, not just Prius owners, but because that is what I primarily write about it. These tips are helpful to anyone who wants to learn a few basics about their car and ensure a safe trip on the road.

That is all for everyone; I hope your week has started out great and you are looking forward to a great weekend.

Check out this issue that I fixed on a gen 2 Prius.

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Peter Neilson is an automotive consultant specializing in electric cars and hybrid battery technologies. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Automotive Service Technology from Weber State University. Peter can be reached on Linkedin and you can tweet him at The_hybrid_guy on Twitter. Find his page on Facebook at Certified Auto Consulting. Read more of Peter's stories at Toyota news coverage on Torque News. Search Toyota Prius Torque News for more in depth Prius coverage from our reporters.