Winter Car-Care Tips

February 11, 2019

Winter Car-Care Tips

Winter brings along a whole new list of concerns for your automobile. The severity of winter depends on where you live. While newer cars require less intervention from us humans, they still need to be prepared for winter. By implementing all or some of these car care tips you can begin to save a significant amount of money.

  1. Watch Your Tire Pressure – Watch your tire pressure, which will drop when the temperature drops. When you keep your tires properly inflated your will get better fuel economy, and it will also help against flat tires.
  2. Keep Your Fuel Tank Above One-Quarter – On older vehicles, this was done to ensure the fuel lines did not freeze. While it doesn’t happen as often with new vehicles it can still happen so why not ensure it doesn’t. In addition, during winter driving it’s a good idea to be prepared in case you become stranded.
  3. Check Your Fluids – Some of your vehicle’s fluids are affected by winter conditions. Take a few minutes to inspect your vehicle’s cooling system, and every year you should do a coolant flush. Cooling system failure is the main reason for engine related breakdown, which can lead to repairs costing thousands. You’ll need to add antifreeze at a ratio of 50/50 antifreeze/water. You should invest in an antifreeze ball tester so that you can check your ratios throughout the winter season and add antifreeze whenever necessary. Make sure your windshield washer fluid is topped up with winter fluid.
  4. Check Your Battery – Older batteries can have trouble during the winter months with the cold. Make sure your terminal posts do not have any corrosion, because when the posts are corroded it can make it harder for the battery to start the car. When there’s extremely cold weather the life expectancy of the battery can be shortened. Finally, make sure you always have jumper cables, just in case your battery goes dead.
  5. Do an Oil Change – Even if your vehicle isn’t quite due for an oil change, now’s a good time to do an oil change. With older vehicles lighter weight oil can be used to keep your vehicle’s parts better lubricated during the winter. Newer cars use lighter weight oil year-round.
  6. Change your Windshield Wiper Blades – Changing your wiper blades at the start of the winter season will ensure they are new. Winter wiper blades do a better job of pushing the slush off your windshield and scraping away the ice.
  7. Put Snow Tires On – Winter driving conditions mean you want to have good traction. Depending on where you live and what you drive snow tires are often a good investment. In some areas where snowfall is minimal you can away with a solid all season radial tire.
  8. Carry an Emergency Kit – Your emergency kit should include cold weather gear such as hats and gloves, jumper cables, flares, flashlight, and basic tools.