7 Tips To Protect Your Car From Christmas Tree Damage in Tucson AZ

Arizona drivers, it is that time of year when families get their Christmas tree. It is also a time when we see a lot of paint damages, dents and even broken sunroofs here t our body shop O’Rielly Collision Centers in Tucson AZ.
We know that strapping a tree to your roof or putting it in your trunk can cause expensive damage to your vehicle. Keep that shopping money in your pocket by following these tips for worry-free tree-hauling!

1. Bring a blanket or a tarp
Make sure you throw an old, thick blanket or tarp in the backseat before speeding off to the local tree lot. Place this on your roof before tying the tree down. If you have a roof rack, arrange it to cover that as well. This will prevent scratches to your vehicle and may even make unloading that much easier.
2. Measure your roof
It is just as crucial to know what size tree your car can accommodate as it is the ceiling height in your living room. That 8 foot tree might be saying “take me”, but your little sedan is saying “that’ll break me”. Best to ask a friend for help or rent a larger vehicle for the day if you’re dreaming big this Christmas.
3. Leave to the professionals
Look up lots that have employees available to bind and tie your tree for you. Drive the extra ten minutes if necessary. It’s worth it. I know from personal experience what it feels like to nearly lose a tree because I didn’t know exactly what I was doing.
4. Bring the right materials
If it’s unavoidable, make sure you have the right materials when you go to a self-serve lot; rope or heavy-duty twine, a boxcutter, and, as always, a tarp or blanket. For insurance reasons, there are many lots that will only allow employees to net the tree, so do your research when going somewhere new. And definitely bring a friend or two to help.
5. Check the ropes before you leave the lot
Do not pull out of the lot until you’ve checked that everything is secure. Give the ropes a good tug and tighten it if the tree shifts too drastically. The last thing you want to see is your tree sliding down the rear windshield.
6. Take the slow route
Take backroads and drive slow. Highways equal high speeds, which not only strips the tree of pine needles (an unfortunate casualty during Christmastime in Tuscon, Arizona), but it will also make your vehicle harder to handle. And braking suddenly could cause the tree to slip. Keep it as secure as possible.
7. Post-season transportation
If you had help when buying your tree, you won’t have that kind of expertise when it’s time to take it to the recycling center. Remember to wrap your tree and get that protective blanket out again. Have someone help you haul it out the door. Face the stump toward the front end of your car when tying it to the roof. If you don’t have a roof rack, don’t rely on the tensile security of the windows. Open all the doors and weave the rope/twine through the vehicle itself. Give it a hefty tug before shutting the doors to make sure it’s secure. And as always, keep yourself and other drivers safe by driving slow.

Happy tree-shopping and happy holidays!
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