Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. Default San Diego to Oakland trip, will my 30+ year old car make it?

    I own a 1983 Volvo 242 DL station wagon with around 200,000 miles on it. Im planning a trip from San Diego to Oakland, a round trip of about a thousand miles. Ive owned this car for about 4 months now and it has served me well, but I am still unsure if It will survive a trip of about 1000 miles. I have already gotten it checked out by the local shop and it has no major issues. It has an idle surge which is annoying but not too important. It has a sticky transmission, but overall runs smoothly on the interstate 5. I put in new spark plugs, engine cleaning, a/c fixing, oil changes of course, new brake pads, tire check ups, and other works of tuning. This car is ancient in 2017 and despite how well this car runs I am skeptical of taking it on a long distance trip. Alternatively I can take my parent's 2014 Chrysler, a much safer option, but I really want to take my own car and test its limits. Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,113

    Default

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    There just is no way for anyone on an internet forum to be able to guess what condition your car is in and be able to tell you if it could make such a trip. The only person who could answer that is a good mechanic who has examined it. It appears you've already done that - so you certainly shouldn't take the advice of any random person over that of a trained professional who has actually seen your car.

    Of course, even a mechanic may not be able to find every potential problem with a 30 year old car, and you've indicated there are at least a few things that haven't been fixed, so there's always going to be the potential of having something go wrong.

    But the good news, this is not a particularly taxing trip - 1000 miles isn't that much, and highway miles are far easier on your car than 1000 miles of stop and go traffic in the bay area. You might look at sticking to US-101 down to LA, to avoid the bit of mountains you'd have on I-5 - particularly noting your transmission issues - but otherwise, you're always going to be in a high traffic area with plenty of other people around and probably good cell service (I'd be more cautious if you were say going across Nevada's remote deserts). It would be wise to be a member of AAA or have some other form of roadside service plan available in case something does happen, but otherwise, I don't see much that should hold you back.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,586

    Default You know your car, so does your mechanic!

    If this were me (and my cars are also older than your parents car!), I'd take the older car but stick to I-5. You'll have one major pass, Tejon Pass. If your car wants to slow down on the uphill, just stick to the right lanes, maybe not the truck's lane, but the next one.

    US-101 is a lovely drive, but it isn't particularly high speed in places. Check here, CalTrans Highway Information, before you leave.


    Donna

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,317

    Default

    To avoid most of the LA traffic, I'd take I-15 to US-395 to CA-58 to Bakersfield, then CA-99 to CA-46 to I-5. This involves 2 passes - Cajon on I-15 and Tehachapi on CA-58, neither one is as strenuous as the Grapevine on I-5.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,586

    Default

    Actually, GLC's recommendation is the one we use more often than not, particularly when coming southbound. On our last trip, we left at 2 or 3 in the morning -- couldn't sleep anyway -- and just buzzed through the LA mess-troplis on I-5, but on the way home, we used the 46 to the 99 to get to Bakersfield, then the 58, 395 and the 15 to get home to San Diego. So it's a great way to go around the LA Mess!


    Donna

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 5
    Last Post: 06-29-2015, 01:19 AM
  2. Replies: 13
    Last Post: 05-01-2014, 10:13 PM
  3. Las Vegas - San Fran - LA. 3 weeks. 1 car and a 4 year old.
    By VickiAnnBrown in forum Favorite Routes in North America
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 08-06-2010, 03:29 AM
  4. Detroit to San Diego~2 drivers+ a 2 year old....
    By Mochi7 in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 06-29-2009, 09:10 AM
  5. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 08-28-2008, 02:53 PM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name

    Loading...



  • MORE STORIES