You can help make shipping smooth and secure by preparing your vehicle ahead of time.
When your driver arrives to pick up your vehicle, the two of you will perform an inspection and fill out the Bill of Lading. But there’s plenty you can do before the driver even shows up to make the process simple and stress-free.
Here’s a comprehensive checklist to ensure that your vehicle is ready for pick-up:
1. Make a copy of your keys to give to the driver. You’ll need to provide the driver with keys to your vehicle’s ignition, trunk, gas cap, and any other locked compartments. Just to be safe, you’ll want to make copies of your keys to give to the driver, keeping the original set for yourself. Make sure that the copies fit and work properly.
2. Empty your gas tank. In order to meet DOT weight regulations, your vehicle’s gas tank must be less than ¼ full when the driver picks it up.
3. Check the inside of your vehicle for personal belongings, and clear the windows. While it’s fine to leave a few small, light items inside your car, you should avoid leaving heavy or valuable items. Things like car seats, spare tires, and tools are fine to leave in your car, but any other items should be bolted down or stored in the trunk. For safety purposes, the windows of your car must be completely clear and unobstructed.
4. Remove firearms, ammunition, and fire extinguishers. Again, for safety purposes, these items cannot be left in your car when it is shipped.
5. Clean your vehicle. Before the driver loads your vehicle, the two of you will need to inspect it so you can fill out the Bill of Lading form. It’s much easier to inspect a clean vehicle.
6. Make sure your vehicle is operational and easily accessible. If your vehicle is inoperable or disabled, put it in an easily accessible location and check that the tires are inflated and the brakes and steering are fully operational.
7. Disable any alarms. If your vehicle has an alarm system, turn it off or provide a remote for the driver.
8. Inspect your vehicle with the driver. Once your driver arrives, the two of you will perform an inspection of your vehicle. You may want to take photos as part of this inspection. When your car is delivered to your final destination, you’ll be responsible for inspecting it again to make sure that no damage occurred during shipment.
9. Complete and sign the Bill of Lading. Together, you and your driver should fill out and sign the Vehicle Condition Report, or Bill of Lading.
Once you’ve taken care of all the preparations, your vehicle is ready for shipping.
During shipment, your driver will take every precaution to keep your vehicle safe and undamaged. You can make their job much easier if you’ve prepared your vehicle ahead of time for a safe, expedited journey.