Get Your Vehicle Road Trip Ready

In our family, summer equals road trips. We spend a good part of the year planning our road trips, from weekend jaunts to week long excursions. Our goal is to make sure our vehicles are in top running condition year-round, as we never know when a last minute trip to San Francisco, Las Vegas, or Tucson is in the mix. Besides changing the oil and making sure the air cleaner is clean and the tire pressure is right, it’s also necessary to take a peek at your brake fluid and window washer fluid. These fluids should be replaced as needed and here’s how.

washer fluid

Window wash fluid is specially formulated to clean your windshield of all types of dirt and grime, and in all weather conditions. Prestone has three types of windshield washer fluid that are made for three different applications ( De-Icer, Bug Wash, All Season 3-in-1). For our needs, the bug washer works best. The climate in southern California is mild year-round, and bugs are prevalent on the many road trips we take.

Refilling the window washer fluid is one of the best car DIY projects you can share with your children. There are no hot or toxic liquids to deal with and children can test their pouring skills so they only fill the washer fluid to the fill line. We’ve designated this task for our son to keep an eye on and it’s his responsibility to fill it when the washer fluid gets low. This duty helps him take ownership of the vehicle and understand that owning a car comes with the responsibility of maintaining it. He’s still a bit young to assist me with changing the oil, but when the time comes he’ll be doing that as well.

brake fluid dot4

Wiper washer fluid is important, but arguably the most important system on your vehicle are the brakes. Regular inspection of the brake pads and rotors is important, but almost equally important is checking your brake fluid and making sure you replace as needed. The best way to check your brake fluid is by doing a visual inspection.

brake fluid

Good brake fluid should be clear, so if your brake fluid is a dark caramel color it’s time to change it. You can opt to bleed your brake system, which removes all of the old fluid, or simply replace the fluid in your master brake cylinder. You can remove the old fluid using an old turkey baster, then wipe the canister clean, and fill with new fluid. Follow your vehicle’s owner’s manual so you know how often the brake fluid should be changed and what type of brake fluid it requires. Prestone has every type of brake fluid you’d need, including DOT 3, DOT 4, or DOT 5. This type of project isn’t for kids, as brake fluid is toxic. You’ll want to make sure none of spills on your paint and if you have some left over, seal it up and dispose of it properly.

Working on your car is a great way to bond with your kids, while doing something constructive on the weekends. Everyone knows that regular maintenance will extend the life of your vehicle, so check out Prestone for all of your car fluid needs including anti-freeze, triple seal stop leak, and de-icer.

Check out all of these automotive products and more from Prestone.


This is a sponsored post from Prestone, but all opinions are 100% from Timothy Dahl of Charles & Hudson.

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