Prepare your vehicle
Wash your vehicle
A clean vehicle will allow you to easily assess it's cosmetic condition. Thoroughly wash your vehicle to identify potential pre-existing damages such as dings, scratches and chips and dents, it will be the key to properly proceed with the first step of your auto shipping, which will be the initial inspection report or BOL (Bill of Lading) at the time of pick up.
Check for pre-existing damages
Inspect your vehicle's exterior and interior condition and keep your own written record of any chips, dents, scratches or other cosmetic damage as well as mileage. That way you can compare with the BOL you will fill in with the driver at the pick up location (always make sure a proper inspection report is conducted and demand a copy of it).
Remove personal items
Remove any personal items from the interior of your car (including the trunk, consoles and glove box) as auto transport companies are not licensed to ship any personal or household goods. Car shipping insurance will not cover the loss or damage of any personal or household items inside your vehicle. Furthermore, such items could potentially cause damage to your vehicle and those of other customers shipping in the same truck.
Check your battery and tires
Make sure the battery has a full charge and that the tires are properly inflated. If your battery "dies" or your tires go flat during transport your vehicle becomes inoperable, compromising the onload-offload process as well as the carrier's schedule and logistic plan. In the case your vehicle becomes non-moving or inoperable you may be required to pay extra fees as special equipment, planning and labor are needed when shipping inoperable vehicles.
Empty your tank to about 1/4 full or less
Although traveling in a special trailer, your vehicle will be driven to be loaded on or unloaded off the truck (sometimes a even more than once, as the driver may need to move your vehicle in order to load or unload others), so make sure you tank is not completely empty but do not fill it up. A full tank increases the overall weight of the vehicle and if all gas tanks of all vehicles being transported in a specific truck were full the driver could potentially go over the legal weight limit, compromising his schedule and subject to fines at checkpoints and weight stations. One-quarter tank is the average recommended for auto shipping.
Fold your mirrors and remove your antennas
Fold back your mirrors and retract (or remove) any and all antennas to increase your vehicle's safety. Also, please remove (or secure) any specialty items like fog lights, ground effects, winches, spoilers, loose trunk speakers and any other loose or protruding elements as such items could compromise the integrity of your vehicle and the other vehiclesbeing transported on the same truck.
Top off all fluids
Check your oil, anti-freeze, steering and transmission oil and brake fluids and make sure you top them all off. This will ensure proper running condition for a safe and timely auto transport and will decrease your vehicle's chances of mechanical failures during transport.
Turn off or disable your car alarm
Please disable your alarm. If you cannot disable the alarm please provide detailed, written instructions for the driver on how to turn off the alarm in case it is triggered. Also, please turn off or disable any other security devices that could interfere with the safe and prompt shipment of your vehicle.
Check for leaks and mechanical malfunctions
It is essential that you let your broker and the driver know if you vehicle has any leaks or mechanical issues as special handling or equipment may be required. Moreover, leaks and mechanical failures could damage other vehicles traveling on the same truck and could result and delays and extra fees.
Close your convertible top
If you are shipping a convertible, make sure the top is closed, locked and secured to avoid damage caused by air, debris, moisture, rain, dirt and others. Also, and unsecured convertible top is a potential safety hazard for your vehicle, other vehicles on the truck and all vehicles on the highway and streets.