As the country prepares for falling temperatures, those of us in colder climates need to ensure that our cars are winter ready. Making sure your vehicle is ready to take on the ice and snow means more than checking your tires, too.
Winterize Your Vehicle
When temperatures drop, you want to make sure that your car is in tip-top shape so you don’t get stranded on the road. This means making sure that your vehicle is ready for winter and is in proper working order, including items under the hood.
Let’s look at a few things you should keep in mind:
- Battery – No one wants a car that doesn’t start when the weather turns cold, so have your battery tested to make sure that it can handle the frost and freezing.
- Fluids – Your vehicle’s fluids can get sluggish when the mercury drops, so make sure you have clean, correct fluids which are topped off and winter ready. If you live in a cold weather state, you may want to consider switching to winter-weight oil.
- Brakes – When the roads get slick, you need the right stopping power, so it’s a good idea to have your brakes inspected before we get too deep into the winter months.
- Tires – Tires can go through some changes in colder temperatures, so check their tread depth and pressure, and that they aren’t old or brittle. For maximum traction on cold, icy roads, try upgrading to a full set of winter tires.
- Windshield wipers – Wet winter weather can cause driving dangers, and you have to make sure that your wipers are up to the task of keeping your windshield clear. Worn or torn wiper blades should be replaced ASAP.
- Winter emergency kit – Packing an emergency kit can be a big help in places where winter storms can strand you. Be sure to have standards like a first aid kit, flashlight, jumper cables, non-perishable food, and water; be extra winter ready by including a blanket, small shovel, an ice scraper, and something for traction if you slide off an icy road.
Need a Newer Vehicle to Ride Out the Winter?
If no amount of winterizing is going to help your car make it through the winter months, it’s probably time to get a set of wheels that will. For many Americans, winter can be the worst time to look for a vehicle, especially if the car you’re driving isn’t up to the task of journeying all over town in the snow.
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