It’s time to get ready for that exciting summer road trip - and your VW is the perfect way to travel.
Whether you are fly fishing in the mountains of Montana or camping on a glacier in Alaska, here are some easy items you can check off toward making your road trip in a VW Jetta or Golf safer and more fun.
Volkswagen’s technical expert, Dan Planz, a Technical Training Manager, says what should be on your Volkswagen maintenance checklist.
With four decades of experience with VW cars, Dan is a pro source when it comes to vehicle care and maintenance. Here is his well-developed Volkswagen maintenance checklist.
Seek regular maintenance.
According to Dan, a proper Volkswagen maintenance checklist can ensure the best operation of your VW and could help spare you the expense of more costly repairs. “As an added benefit, regularly maintained cars can hold value much better than their neglected counterparts,” he says. Did you know that regularly scheduled service is important to help keep the car operating in optimal condition? It also helps you avoid breakdowns when you are in the middle of nowhere on that long summer drive. Replacing engine oil at the manufacturer’s listed intervals will help keep your car’s engine running smoothly, according to VW. Regularly rotating your tires can lengthen the tread life and could save you money from replacing them in the long term. The inspection processes incorporated in scheduled maintenance could also identify small issues before they turn into major problems. From air filters to the cooling system, everything in the car is subject to cause and effect, and not addressing the cause at the scheduled time may lead to an undesired effect. For example, neglecting to change brake fluid can wear out the hydraulic components quicker and even ruin the brake lines—which can be hazardous and expensive to replace.
Schedule maintenance appointments early.
Dan notes that Volkswagen has taken extraordinary measures to ensure that maintenance services continue as normally as they can at dealerships during these very challenging times post-pandemic when everyone is getting out on the road for summer travel. “That said, drivers should schedule their next maintenance appointment as far in advance as possible to help avoid any possible delays.”
Use high-quality home EV chargers.
For EV owners, Dan recommends purchasing a quality EV charger for your home. “You can get a relatively inexpensive EV charger that’ll work just fine,” said Dan, “however, in the long run, a low-quality EV charger may reduce the life expectancy of your vehicle’s high voltage battery.”
Check tire pressure often.
Dan says one of the most important things to include on your Volkswagen maintenance checklist is tire pressure. “Without properly set tire pressures, a car’s fuel efficiency may decrease, the tires will likely wear faster, and overall vehicle safety and performance may be compromised. So, I highly recommend keeping a tire pressure gauge in the vehicle.”
Close the windows during long trips.
With gas prices going up, Dan notes that drivers should be mindful of more than just tire pressures. In fact, opening windows at highway speeds can greatly increase wind drag, essentially pushing the vehicle backward, then forcing the engine to work harder and less efficiently to maintain speed, he notes. “Also, if you’re going on a long road trip, try to avoid sudden throttle movements and spirited driving techniques.” It’s good practice to accelerate and decelerate smoothly and to use cruise control whenever possible. These tips could help save you time and money at the pump.
So, in preparation for this upcoming summer dream trip don’t forget to give your Volkswagen EV or ICE a little TLC!
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