Are You Road-Ready? Road Trip Safety Tips
As we head into the first full month of April, its road trip season across America. But before you set off on your next big adventure, you need to recognize that anything that can go wrong surely will. This is why it’s imperative to meticulously plan out every part of your excursion. This includes not only what you plan to do and where you stay but also several aspects of the trip itself. Here are several road trip tips from our years on the road that we want to ensure you know. First and foremost, you need to get a road trip safety check. We had one customer who was gearing up to drive to New Mexico for college. Knowing he was traveling across the country, we checked all the belts, hoses, brakes, suspension parts, and wiper blades, and we even test-drove the car to ensure he was going to be safe on his journey. When we start to do a road trip safety check, we inspect your tires for nails or any debris that could puncture the tread. After that, we check your air pressure and the tread depth. In addition, we then take the wheels off to ensure they’re properly balanced. Something like this takes only a half- hour, and you will have the peace of mind that your car is ready for anything. This safety check is standard with every service request we handle, but we encourage every one of our customers to do it before an extended drive. You don’t have to pay for it, and we don’t even think twice about it. But for simple road trip tips, I recommend monitoring your phone use. Occasionally people try to check their phone for texts and missed calls while driving. It’s best to save this for gas stops. If it’s something important, simply pull off to the side of the road to address the call or text.
dashboard. This way, you won’t be distracted and your eyes
won’t veer from the road. When using one of these map apps like Google Maps, make sure you put in your destination before leaving your house.
It’s also important to take a map with you. You never know when you will be without service, so it’s a great way to ensure you’ll never get lost. Additionally, it helps to print out all your instructions. On one trip to San Francisco, we lost service and were only able to find our way by our printed instructions. It’s also important to know where all your gas stops are. Most map apps will have these noted, but it never hurts to already have them highlighted on your written instructions. When traveling in the Midwest, I recommend keeping at least a quarter-tank of gas until you start looking for a gas station. Locally, gas stations are plentiful. But as you go farther west on the highway, you will start to see them every 40–50 miles instead of every 20 miles. Since we’re in the heart of spring, check the weather reports for every area you’re traveling through. Some areas may still be getting snow or heavy rain, so this will give you an idea of what clothes to pack and what to include in your roadside safety kit. A basic roadside safety kit should include bandages, NEOSPORIN, aspirin, flashlights, and hand warmers. And depending on the weather, some water, a few extra blankets, and tire chains are essential additions. Do you have any additional road trip tips? Let me know next time you’re in the shop! I’m always eager to learn new and fun road trip ideas.
If you use a map app, go hands-free with a Bluetooth system and a stick-on attachment for your
-Randy & Jill Bunn
Wake Forest • 919.453.0345 — Raleigh • 919.231.6164
Published by The Newsletter Pro • www.NewsletterPro.com
Finding Motivation on Those Tough Days
The Importa The Dangers of Dirt (No, Really) W hile everyone in the family is making vacation and road trip plans, it’s essential to give your car a good cleaning to ensure it’s roadworthy for the adventures ahead. As winter comes to an end and we get into the heart of spring, it’s understandable why April is National Car Care Month! Just a few minutes of care will make the difference between a successful road trip and a day stuck at home. Here are a couple of the benefits you will see. LessWear &Tear Even in your day in, day out adventures, mud, rain, and dirt can latch onto and eat away at the surface of your car. While you may not notice it initially, over time, the minerals in these substances deteriorate your paint job. This exposes the body of your car to the risk of rust and potentially weakens the strength of the body’s materials. Your engine and components are also susceptible to weather conditions. So when you pop SUDOKU
Top Mental Strategies for Your Fitness Routine
Whether your New Year’s workout routine is finally embedded in your schedule or you’re still trying to make it happen, always remember that your mind is just as important as your body. On some days, you may feel like anything is possible, and on others, it may feel impossible to even get out of bed. Don’t worry, that’s totally normal! There’s no reason to feel ashamed if you’re struggling with gaining steam and motivation for your workout. Here are some mental strategies to help you get firmly into your routine this year and the years to come. Getting to the Gym What’s the hardest part of working out? For most people, it’s not the heavy weights or the long cardio sessions — it’s actually stepping into the gym. Sometimes, people will wake up and think that the gym isn’t possible that day as they lay in bed. Some people will psych themselves out of working out because their time is limited, or they worry about how tired they’ll be after the workout (especially after or before a busy day). Instead of thinking of reasons you can’t or don’t want to go, focus your mind only on the task of getting there. Stepping into the gym will often give you the mental push to actually work out. It’s also best to leave the all-or-nothing mindset behind — a 45- or 55-minute workout isn’t required every single gym session. Life happens, and even if it’s a short exercise, your workout will actually energize you for the rest of your day. PushingYourself to the Limit Studies have found that the most successful people share grit: the ability to work hard and endure even the most difficult times. Workouts will burn, and the motions may feel uncomfortable or even painful, so it’s crucial to have the grit to push yourself to the limit. Rather than give up, you should embrace the pain and see it as a sign you’re growing stronger. Adjust your inner vocabulary. Anything that seems “uncomfortable” should be reconsidered as “intense” but something you can work through. Of course, be careful of injury pains!
Helping Our Community 4 Wheels at a Time Featuring Wheels4Hope
ce of Car Care the hood to knock the dirt and leaves away from your engine, check all your belts and hoses. Due to the cold temperatures of the winter months, they’re susceptible to hardening and cracking as well as getting dirty. Improved Safety When you start your day, your mirrors, windows, and tires should be clear of debris. Neglecting your windows and mirrors can impair your vision as you drive even in the best weather. By washing your vehicle once every two weeks, you’ll have the peace of mind knowing these are clean and safe for your next adventure. When you’re on the ground cleaning your wheels and tires, peek under the chassis to check for loose or broken cables. If you don’t, you might not notice a broken or loose brake line until it’s too late. These are just a couple of the reasons it pays dividends to keep your car clean through the spring months. If you find any broken wires or hoses, schedule a maintenance appointment as soon as possible. In addition to fixing any pertinent problems, we will give your car a full inspection to ensure you’re road-ready.
If you’ve read our previous newsletter, you know we’re customer- and community- oriented first and foremost. Going the extra mile for our customers to ensure they’re safe has been our quality standard ever since we opened our doors in 1984. This is why we are proud to partner with another organization that is doing the same in our area.
Wheels4Hope is a nonprofit car donation program that turns donated cars into local miracles. Their sole mission is to provide reliable, affordable transportation to economically vulnerable families and people who are referred to them by their partner agencies. As a staple of our nonprofit community, Wheels4Hope survives through the contributions of our neighbors. This includes numerous donors, volunteers, congregations, and partner businesses. These entities understand that transportation is a vital component for self-sufficiency — a requirement for stable employment and caring for a child, as well as the pursuit of education. As a partner garage, we donate hours of labor to prepare the vehicles that are placed back into the community. To make a difference in our community, it’s as easy as giving them a call! From there, they will take care of everything. Your car won’t go to just anyone. The organization partners with community agencies that refer applicants who are ready for the financial responsibility of owning and maintaining a car. In addition to seeing your car go to a donor who needs it, you can claim the full fair market value of the vehicle as a tax deduction. If not, Wheels4Hope repairs your car and sells it on their retail lot, which will generate the best value for your tax deduction. For all vehicles sold, all proceeds go back into the nonprofit to serve other deserving members of our community. Located in the Triangle and Triad areas, Wheels4Hope has helped over 3,496 individuals in our neighborhood. To volunteer or get involved yourself, visit Wheels4Hope.org for more information.
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Wake Forest 919.453.0345 Raleigh 919.231.6164
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INSIDE This Issue
Are You Road-Ready? Top Mental Strategies for Your Fitness Routine The Importance of Car Care Solve This Puzzle, Get a Visa Gift Card! Helping Our Community 4 Wheels at a Time The Best Locations for Spring Blooms
See Spring Bloom In These Beautiful Locations Spring is here, which means beautiful flowers are finally showing themselves after a long winter. Here are some of the best places in the U.S. to see flower blossoms and welcome the season. Great Smoky Mountains The Great Smoky Mountains National Park stretches across North Carolina and Tennessee, and while its scenery is beautiful year-round, the park is especially alluring to nature enthusiasts during the spring. Through this season, miles of lady’s-slipper orchids, irises, cardinal flowers, and lilies dot its lush green landscape. It’s dubbed “Wildflower National Park” throughout this time of year, and you can experience it by car or on foot. The park also offers expert-led tours that weave through the flowers during their peak bloom. Crested Butte Crested Butte, Colorado, is best known for its winter sports and summer hikes. But recently it has drawn the attention of flower enthusiasts for its unique pink, orange, and gold alpine wildflowers that appear in the spring. This natural phenomenon even inspired the creation of the annual Wildflower Festival in midsummer, which features nature walks, art, photography, culinary experiences, and more. For a truly unique experience, you can even ascend the town’s
titular Crested Butte to spot some rare alpine sunflowers next to the picturesque West Elk Mountains. Antelope Valley The California Poppy Reserve in Lancaster, California, is a 1,780-acre park
that features sloping hills covered with fields of vibrant orange, yellow, and red poppies in the spring. Warm temperatures and heavy rainfall across Southern California during this time of year create a brief period of thick blooms as far as the eye can see. And while the poppies can be enjoyed from the comfort of your car, the best way to experience them is to walk the leisurely Antelope Loop Trail for a breathtaking, up-close adventure. Spring flora is gorgeous and naturally attracts large crowds of people every year. If you plan to visit any of these destinations, just remember that their ecosystems are delicate. Respect park signs, stay on designated trails, and do your part to make sure these flowers return year after year for future generations to enjoy.
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