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Person Preparing Their Car for Shipping

5 Steps to Prepare Your Car before Shipping

If you're moving, buying a car, in the military, or have other reasons to transport your vehicle a long distance, professional car shipping is a service you ought to consider. Not only does it free you from the hassle of getting your car from point A to point B, stressing about the long drive, safety concerns, etc., but it is also a safe and smart way to ensure your car gets there safely. Read on to learn about the best ways to prepare your car for shipping and the steps you should take before you have it shipped.

Clean It

The most obvious thing you should do before shipping your car is clean it. This not only makes it so you have a clean car arriving at its destination, but it also makes it easier to inspect before and after the shipping process. Washing the outside of your car is more important than the state of the inside, but it is recommended to clean both before shipping.

Empty It

As part of the cleaning process, make sure to completely empty your car of all personal belongings. Not only are they typically not insured, but there is also always a risk of them becoming lost or damaged in the shipping process. Additionally, they add to the overall weight of your vehicle, so it benefits you to empty the car completely. This can also include upgrades or add-ons like GPS devices or TVs. If your car has a custom alarm system, disable it so it doesn’t get triggered during transportation, and remove or secure any loose parts on the exterior of the car.

Basic Maintenance

Since mechanical issues can cause shipping delays, it is a good idea to have basic maintenance done on your car before shipping it. Check the tires, top off fluids, make sure the battery has a full charge, and note the mileage at the time of shipment.

Inventory Damage

Once your car is cleaned, emptied, and has its maintenance done, do an inventory of any damage it has. Make sure to take pictures from all angles. Check for scratches, dents, paint discoloration, windshield chips, etc. Create a spreadsheet or list with the locations of the damage, the accompanying pictures, and the time/date stamp so you have a record of the state of your vehicle before shipping.

Empty the Tank

Since a full tank of gas adds to the weight of your vehicle, empty your tank so it is only about ¼ of the way full. It only needs to be driven onto and off of the transport truck, so more gas than that is unnecessary for shipping.

Picture of ‘Gas Tank Empty’ Indicator

Keep a Set of Keys

It’s never a good idea to only have one set of keys for a vehicle, and that is especially true when shipping it. Keys will be required to drive the car on and off the transport truck, so you’ll have to give a set of keys to the person when shipping it. Keep your extra set of keys, or have one made if you don’t already have an extra set in your possession.

For a quote or to ask questions about car shipping services, reach out to the pros at LaPowski Transportation LLC today!


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