4 Winter Car Care Tips
Although taking car of your car year round is a good idea for everyone, those of us that live in cooler climes have to take special care of our cars during the winter months. Not only does the cold weather affect some of our car’s systems adversely during the colder months but driving conditions can be more dangerous in the winter with the threat of snow storms, icy roads, and more. But if you are prepared, and are taking proper care of your car, you should be just fine.
1) Replace your windshield wiper blades
It can be a hassle, but you should replace your wiper blades every winter. During the summer months they don’t get used as much, and the rubber can be damaged from the sun. But during the winter it’s important that you are able to see clearly at all times and that snow, ice, and water can get cleared away quickly and easily.
2) Check your tire pressure
Did you know that your tire pressure can decrease as the weather drops? In fact, you can lose up to 1 pound per square inch for every 10 degrees that the temperature drops. And when your tires are low on pressure, they are less responsive and harder to control. If you want to make sure that you won’t loose your traction when that ice storm hits, check your tires’ pressure and keep it at optimum levels throughout the winter.
3) Check your antifreeze
Although in the summer you don’t want your car to overheat, in the winter you don’t want it to freeze up. That’s why you need to make sure your antifreeze is mixed properly. In the winter, your antifreeze can thicken due to the colder weather, so you may need to mix in some water to make sure you have the right viscosity. You can pick up a cheap antifreeze tester from most auto parts stores.
4) Prepare an emergency kit
An emergency kit is less about making sure the car is okay and more about making sure you are safe in the event you get stuck, stranded, or are in an accident. Your winter emergency kit could include:
· A blanket
· Extra boots and gloves
· A small shovel
· Food (granola bars or MREs)
· Jumper cables
· A first-aid kit
· A flashlight
· And more
You can store the kit in your trunk, but make sure it is easily accessible.
Winter car care is about more than making sure your car is running well, it’s about keeping yourself safe through the winter months when driving conditions are less than ideal. But if you stick to these tips, you should be well prepared in case that emergency ever arises.