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Travel from Michigan to Colorado

My van has 132,000 miles on it. I am planning a trip from Michigan to Colorado this March. The van has been running well and I have kept up the maintenance of the vehicle. I have been using a non-conventional Max Life oil from Valvoline. What other things should I be concerned about or check out before my trip?

You will be driving at high speeds on desolate highways…You will want decent, well-balanced tires, new wiper blades, an extra gallon of washer fluid, some decent sun-glasses. Watch the weather forecasts and don’t depart into an approaching storm. March is a VERY snowy month out west…

If your maintenance is up to date, then I don’t think you have any special prep needed. I would pay attention to my tires, but that’s about it. We routinely drive our cars with 100+K miles on trips this long without any issues.

In Colorado are you going past Denver up into the mountains? If so, you may need want winter tires on the van. Also a set of chains or cables should be packed in the van along with some water and other “survival” stuff if you head for the hills.

Since you’re living in MI you’re already used to winter driving conditions and the need for common sense on slick roads. One thing you may or may not have encountered is sun and a dry roadway on one side of a mountain curve and shade and snow pack on the other. It’s going to be pretty common in CO in March. Of course I don’t know if you’re going to the pretty part of CO or the eastern part…

Check your belts and hoses, be sure your tires and brakes are good. Have you EVER had your front wheel bearings repacked? It’s probably past time. Have a nice trip.

Thanks, Caddyman, for the tips!!

Thanks for the info! I will be going to Colorado Springs and then into the mountains from there.

MG McAnick,
Thanks for the reply! I have not had my front wheel bearings repacked, unless they did it when I had my brakes redone. I will have a nice trip!

The worst part of your trip could be the last part, between Denver and The Springs. You will be driving I-25 over Monument Hill, a little 8000’ bump that can be treacherous in bad weather. This is a high-speed commuter corridor and things can just get insane IF the weather is bad…Usually, the weather is good…

Make sure tires have great tread.

Otherwise if you hit weather be smart/flexible find a motel and wait it out. Travel during a storm is silly on this trip.