(WKBN) — Those driving to Thanksgiving dinner with their friends and family might want to make sure their cars are ready.
AAA expects to respond to about 400,000 roadside assistance calls. Local mechanic and Westside Tire president Rich Rogenski has some tips to avoid breaking down.
Number one is to check out your tires.
“Use the old Lincoln’s head on the penny trick to determine if you have enough tread on your tires,” Rogenski said.
When the penny is inserted in the tire groove, the top of the Lincoln’s head should be covered to know you have enough tread. The tires are the only part of the car that’s on the road, so they should be in good condition.
“And it’s very important to have them properly inflated so they last longer but you also get the maximum fuel economy,” Rogenski said.
Underinflated tires are the number one cause for blowouts, and a tire with a leak can also be a problem.
After inspecting the outside, lift the hood and look around. There are a few simple things you go do on your own. Start by checking to see if any hoses are leaking, make sure the battery terminals look clean and look at the coolant level.
“The biggest reason for breakdowns on the side of the road are vehicles overheating,” Rogenski said.
Make sure the window washer fluid is full and inspect the wiper blades for a clear view of the road in case of bad weather.
“It could make the difference between waiting for a tow truck on the side of the road and arriving for holiday dinner on time,” Rogenski said.
For a tire or under-the-hood inspection, check with a repair facility — many will be happy to do it.