• Check vehicle fluid levels: Before starting any road trip, make sure your vehicle has the proper level of recommended fluids. For maximum efficiency, get an oil change and check for the correct amount of coolant, as well as power steering, brake and windshield wiper fluids. Make sure the tires are properly inflated for optimal gas mileage.
• Bring an updated map (a real one): While most smartphones have a GPS app, there may come a point on the trip when you're unable to get service. To avoid getting lost and wasting precious time, it's vital to have a physical map on hand. Plus, printed maps can help circumvent any detours caused by unexpected road construction or accidents.
• Pack accordingly: When traveling with family or friends, it's both smart and economical to pack a variety of food and beverages for a quick snack. You should also bring an emergency kit with a blanket, jumper cables, a flashlight and first aid items. Traveling with kids? Consider bringing a DVD player, handheld devices or games to avoid the dreaded "Are we there yet?" chorus.
• Check your brakes: The last thing anyone wants to hear in the middle of a road trip is the brakes squeaking. Have a professional examine your vehicle's brakes and brake pads.
• Keep the sunshine outside: While nice weather guarantees scenic views, too much sunlight can cause unforeseen problems including glare, interior fading and UV exposure. One way you can protect your car and its passengers is by installing 3M Automotive Window Film, which can reject up to 97 percent of the sun's heat-producing infrared light. Most importantly, the product provides an SPF up to 1,000, making it one of the best sunblocks that doesn't come in a bottle. To learn more about window film or to find a dealer nearby, visitwww.3M.com/windowfilm.
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