There are several reasons why you might need to have a vehicle shipped and this process has become increasingly popular with the rising sales in online car buying. While it is perfectly safe to ship a vehicle across the United States, or even internationally, it is important to make sure the vehicle is adequately prepared for the trip. Since there is nothing you can do once the car is in transit, it’s best to make sure you have taken all the proper precautions prior to shipment. Here are a few important tips on how to prepare your car for shipping.
Wash the Car
It is best to wash your car either on the day you plan to ship it or if necessary the night before. Even if you are purchasing a car from someone else, you should request that the seller thoroughly wash the interior and exterior of the car prior to shipment. Washing the car is important because it makes it easier for you to inspect the vehicle. It is much easier to observe scratches, dings, or dents on a clean car so you can take note of any existing damage. You might even consider taking pictures of any minor damage with a time-stamped camera just in case there are any disputes later on. Once the car arrives, you should carefully inspect it for any new scratches or dents.
Check for Leaks
A week or so prior to shipping your car you will want to inspect the undercarriage for leaks. If you do notice anything leaking, it is important to have it repaired right away. Otherwise, the auto shippers could hold you responsible for any damage to other cars that was caused by your vehicle’s leak.
Check the Tires and Battery
Over and underinflated tires as just as risky during transport as they are driving on the road. If your tires are not inflated properly, you are increasing the risk of damage to the tire. When you check your tire pressure, you will also want to check the condition of your battery. Make sure it is fully charged and secured in its supporting bracket. If your battery is not in good condition, you should replace it right away.
Do NOT fill it with Gas
Your gas tank should only be about ¼ full when you are shipping it so it doesn’t add unnecessary weight to the auto shipper. Since the car is being transported and not driven, there is no need to have a full tank of gas.
Disable Anti-Theft Devices and Remove Personal Belongings This is one you might not think about, but the auto shipper will not enjoy driving a long distance with a car alarm going off. In addition to being a nuisance, anti-theft devices can prevent the driver from having access into your car. Since you should be removing all personal items prior to shipment, it should not be a problem if the driver has to access your vehicle.