Explains How to Prepare a Vehicle for Car Shipping

June 02 13:36 2021 Explains How to Prepare a Vehicle for Car Shipping

Planning a move to a different state? Driving a beloved car halfway across the country isn’t the best approach to bringing it along for the ride. Instead, most drivers choose to ship their vehicles and have them dropped off at their new homes. Shipping a car is more complicated than some people think, though. Read on to find out how to get the vehicle prepared.

Step One: Choose a Transporter

Not all auto transporters are created equal. Before choosing one, ask questions like How Much Does It Cost To Ship A Car Across The Country? Get quotes from multiple carriers, then choose a company that offers competitive pricing and excellent service.

Step Two: Gather Documents

The first step is to provide the auto transporter with proof of vehicle ownership. According to, auto transporters like RCG Logistics will want a copy of the vehicle registration, bill of sale, proof of insurance, the original title, and the owner’s license. Get these documents together in advance to avoid unnecessary shipment delays.

Step Three: Wash the Car and Document Damage

Washing the car both inside and out lets drivers catch any scratches, dings, or other minor damage already on the vehicle. Look for any signs of damage, including not just dents, but also discoloration and paint chips, and document them carefully. The chances of a car sustaining damage during transport are very low, but it’s still wise to have documentation of its prior condition.

Step Four: Perform Basic Maintenance

The car will be riding on a car carrier, which means it’s best to keep the gas low before transport. Aside from using up gas, there are a few other steps drivers should take before the car gets loaded up. They should check the tire pressure, battery charge, and fluids, and check for leaks. Some drivers also note down the mileage before transport.

Step Five: Remove Exterior Accessories

Exterior accessories are more likely than the car itself to get damaged during transport. It’s best to take them off or secure them carefully before the auto transporter arrives. Exterior accessories include things like retractable antennas and custom spoilers along with removable bike, ski, or luggage racks.

Step Six: Remove Personal Items

It’s best to remove personal items from the vehicle before it’s shipped. While transport companies’ insurance policies cover damage to and theft of vehicles, they don’t cover anything inside it, and these companies can even be fined for moving personal items. Grab charging cables, GPS devices, water bottles, sunglasses, and anything else typically left in the car. That includes any personally identifying paperwork and insurance information.

Step Seven: Sign the Bill of Lading

Drivers will be expected to sign the bill of lading when the auto transport company arrives to pick up their cars. This document should document the pickup and drop-off destinations, the vehicle’s condition at pickup, and any special issues or mechanical problems with the vehicle. Drivers can find more info about bills of lading online.

Once a car is loaded up and the driver has signed the bill of lading, it will be ready to get on its way. Change focus to pack those bags and finalize travel plans. All that will be required once the car and its driver both reach their destination is a quick inspection and signing procedure, so there’s nothing left to worry about.

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