How To Prepare Your Car For Shipping

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Whether you plan on having your personal vehicle shipped somewhere across the state, overstate lines, or to a different country, doing some basic car shipping preparation is mandatory. Once you will decide which car shipping quote to accept, use the following steps to secure a smooth, affordable, and safe car shipping experience. First…

Understand Why It Is Important To Learn How To Ship Your Car Correctly

There are a few essential perks of preparing your car for shipping, including:

  • knowing how to ship a car will help lower the risk of damaging the interior and exterior parts of your vehicle
  • you will avoid customs delays as well as delays during various types of inspections
  • you will lower your final moving bill

Now that you have an understanding of why it is important to know how to prepare a car for shipping, let’s move on.

Have All The Car’s Documents Ready

Car shipping movers will ask for proof of car ownership prior to accepting to ship your vehicle. Preparing all the necessary paperwork ahead of time will help you prevent any delays, last-minute issues, and desperate searches through your boxes. Have the following papers ready for the movers:

  • proof of car insurance
  • all car registration papers
  • bill or similar proof of sale showing you are the rightful owner of the car
  • the original title for the car
  • valid IDs, including driver’s licenses and passports

Check Your Vehicle For Mechanical Faults

Prior to asking a long distance mover to ship your car out of state or overseas, make sure to do minimum maintenance if the vehicle is still in operable condition. In case of an inoperable car, let the mover know about the current state of the vehicle and the fact that it cannot be driven onto the moving truck and off of it.

For a fully functional vehicle, go to a mechanic and have any leaks or faults taken care of. Have them top off the oil, coolant, and the rest of the fluids to prevent oil spillage during loading. Check the pressure in the tires and see that the tires are properly inflated. Inspect the state of the battery and have it charged if necessary. Remember to write down the car’s mileage at pickup and delivery.

Don’t Worry About Filling Up The Gas Tank

While you might be tempted to fill up the tank prior to having the car shipped, there is no actual reason why you should do it. The vehicle will be shipped to the address, not driven there. Adding more weight to the car will only increase the final costs. A heavier vehicle will also be more prone to damage during shipping. Do your best to keep the fuel to a minimum during car shipping preparation.

Remove Any Personal Belonging From The Vehicle

While you might think that packing some of your boxes in the car that will be shipped to your new home, is not a good idea. You will receive no insurance for the belongings you will choose to load in the car. In case they will get stolen or damaged during transportation, you will not receive any compensation. Plus, a car shipping company will normally be penalized for transporting household items inside the vehicle that they have been asked to ship.

Instead of adding more stuff to your car, you should actually take out all your personal items from the vehicle, including sunglasses, GPS devices, charging cables, car insurance information and others.

Also remember to remove all the toll tags as well as any parking passes you might have inside the vehicle. Having toll tags inside the car could lead to extra fees getting charged while the car is carried across tolls.

Some of the items you will need to leave inside the car are the jack, spare tires, an emergency kit, and the license plate.

Remove All Exterior Car Attachments

This list of car shipping tips would not be complete without mentioning the need to remove all attachments on the exterior of the vehicle. They could cause damage to the car during the shipping, so remove any bike, ski, and luggage racks, spoilers, antennas that can be retracted or rooftop boxes.

Have Any Pre-Shipping Car Damage Documented

Do a thorough inspection of the vehicle and accurately record all pre-existing damages you may notice. Search for signs of scratching, paint chipping, pain discoloration, or dents. Take clear photos of everything you notice.

To get a better view on everything, wash your car first. No matter if you will choose to have your car shipped using the enclosed option or via an open carrier, the vehicle should remain mostly safe from any serious damage. The cleaner the car, the more visible the dents and scratches should become.

Make sure the interior of the car is properly washed and cleaned before the movers arrive so you can enjoy a nice and fresh start once you will arrive in your new hometown.

Get ready to fill in a condition report upon receiving your vehicle at the final destination. Use the photos you have taken prior to the shipping as evidence in case you need to file a claim against the mover. On occasion, the vehicle could suffer some damages during transit, and it is best to be proactive and be ready to prove the condition your car was in at the time of the pick-up.

Have A Spare Set Of Car Keys Ready

The vehicle will need to be driven to the autotransporter, which means you will need to provide a set of keys to the movers. Make sure you have a spare set ready and do not leave your only set of key with the person who will be responsible for driving the vehicle at the loading area.

Now that you know how to move a car and how to prepare a car for shipping, make sure to pick the best long distance moving company from our list of top interstate movers and get started!


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