Before you pack up your vehicle to go to the beach or other spring break destinations, it’s a good idea to make sure your vehicle is ready for the journey. Handicap accessible vehicles are subject to more wear and tear due to the added weight of a wheelchair or a scooter and where it is carried on the vehicle. And while you may or may not have a check-up for your adaptive equipment every six months, the precaution is necessary when using your vehicle for a prolonged amount of time. On March 13, Daylight Saving Time will kick off the start of more daylight hours. Please take these tips into consideration when you take your wheelchair accessible vehicle to a NMEDA Quality Assurance Program dealer near you.

Check Wheelchair Van Tires

Where the wheelchair rests will cause more pressure on the vehicle and the tires. If the wheelchair user sits in the driver’s seat, double-check the front left tire. If the passenger side is where the wheelchair user sits, check the front right tire. Motorized wheelchairs can add upwards of 300 lbs. to your vehicle, so monitoring your tires for less tread in these areas will make your driving less hazardous. Rotate your tires every time you change your oil for maximum care.

Maintain the Interior

Like any other vehicle, wheelchair accessible vehicles need to be cleaned inside and out. Anything that can snag on your wheelchair, or debris that could be harmful or flammable, should be thrown out immediately. Maintaining the interior includes servicing steering aids and other moving parts for optimal efficiency.

Inspect Your Ramp

While you’re out and about, soaking up the sun and all that Daylight Saving Time offers, you may use your wheelchair ramp numerous times a day. No matter which type you have—in-floor, hydraulic lift or fold-out ramp—you should have a NMEDA dealer remove debris and perform a routine check to maintain upkeep. Over time, you’ll benefit from all the check-ups because you’ll continue to use and love your wheelchair accessible vehicle for years to come.

With more hours and daytime to drive comes more responsibility. If you’ve purchased your adaptive vehicle from a QAP dealer, they can provide you with 24-hour emergency service for your warranty-covered equipment. But, the best measure to take would be to keep maintaining the quality of your mobility vehicle so you can enjoy it, hassle-free, for much longer.

The National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA) is an advocate for mobility and accessibility for drivers with disabilities. If you need help with converting or buying a handicap accessible car, truck or van, please consider one of our Quality Assurance Program mobility equipment dealers.

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