Is Your Racecar Ready?

by : Shane Hester

With the summer fast approaching, racecar season will soon move into overdrive. With a myriad of races and competitions available, will your racecar be ready? It needs to be if you want to stay in step with your competition. It's a good time of year to give your racecar the once-over and see if you need to upgrade with new racing parts. A racecar that is in prime running condition will give you that extra measure of confidence when you arrive for a race.

The best way to prepare your racecar for a new season is to make a checklist. Write down every aspect of the racecar that needs checking and go through the list systematically. It's a good idea to save your checklists so you can have a written history of what car parts require frequent replacing. When you see in your records that a certain brand of part is constantly wearing out, you can try another brand. A checklist also serves as a reminder to check some minor parts that you may overlook.

Start with the exterior of your racer. While not part of the actual mechanics of your car, you do not want anything falling off onto the track. In addition, you want the car to look good. A car that looks good just makes you feel that much more professional and "with it" as a racecar driver. Aside from checking for loose panels, lights and mirrors, you want to check for any signs of stress on the main body of the car. Look for cracks on the exterior panels, deep dents, nicks and abrasions. Be finicky about the appearance of the outside of your car. When you are, you'll be finicky about the inside, as well. You want to be very particular when it comes to the moving car parts and gadgets in the heart of your racecar.

Before you finish your exterior check, you have to do one more thing. Getting your car ready for a new season of races means checking your tires for any signs of wear. You may need a new set to start the season. If the existing set is fine, you may still need to reset the tire pressure if the car has been sitting all winter. You will need to do a thorough check of your braking system, as well, including brake lines and fluid.

Most of the items on your checklist will involve the interior mechanisms of your racecar. You will need to perform a thorough check of all fluids, such as oil and transmission. There is a full complement of car parts to check, too. You know what parts are in your engine, so make sure your checklist is comprehensive. Don't neglect checking the minor parts, such as the screws and fasteners that hold everything together. Racecars endure a lot of stress and even the smallest car parts can falter. These can cause a chain reaction of events that can lead to damage or injury.

Racing season is upon us in full force. Be proactive and get your street car or racecar in tip-top shape for any races you plan to participate in during the season. Check over all your car parts for any signs of trouble and replace as needed.