Just as we prepare our home for the winter, getting our car ready for treacherous road conditions is just as important. The following information provides a few simple tips that will get your car ready for the snow and ice.
Battery, Brakes, Tires
These are three important items to get checked or replaced before winter. A battery should be tested by a trained mechanic to make sure it’s in working order. All the connections should be free from rust or corrosion. Tires should be rotated and pressure checked prior to bad weather. Consider purchasing snow tires if you live in an area that normally receives snow. Finally, making sure the brakes are working properly should go without saying.
Check the Fluids
Most people know that having an adequate amount of antifreeze is important in cold weather. What some people may not know is that a thinner type of oil is usually recommended for cars when the temperature gets below freezing. Having plenty of windshield wiper fluid and wipers that will adequately keep snow and ice off the windshield is also important. Test the defroster to make sure it’s working properly before it’s needed. It’s a good idea to keep the gas tank at least half full during the winter to keep the lines from freezing.
Stock Up For Emergencies
Even a car that is well prepared can break down in extreme weather. Every driver needs to have supplies in the trunk or backseat. Water, snacks, blankets, ice scrapers, jumper cables, and a flashlight are a few of the basic necessities to always have in the car. In case you would get stuck or in an accident it’s also suggested to include a shovel, a bag of sand, a first aid kit, and flares. Make sure that you are ready for whatever awaits you.
Use the Garage
If you have a garage or any kind of area that will at least shelter the car from excessive wind or snow, use it. This will make starting the car on frigid mornings easier. If your car must be kept outside, try to park against a building that will shield it from the wind. It may also be worth the money to purchase a quality covering if your vehicle is parked outside and there are often several days in a row when you won’t be driving it.