Tips for Winterizing Your Vehicle

The snow and ice that winter sometimes brings makes driving much more dangerous. It’s important to make sure your vehicle is ready for winter before the first big snowstorm hits. Here are some tips for winterizing your vehicle.

1) Check tire pressure; consider investing in snow tires

With snow and ice on the roads, it becomes even more important to have good tires that can handle slick roads. Be sure to check your tire pressure. If your tire pressure is low, traction is significantly decreased. Slipping and sliding all over an icy road is something you’re going to want to avoid. If you do a lot of driving in the winter, investing in snow tires might be a good option. They are made to handle those icy and slippery conditions.

2) Check battery

The last thing you want while driving, especially in the winter, is a dead car battery. The cold weather reduces battery capacity, making it even more important to check your battery fluid levels and make sure all cables and wires are where they belong. If you’re shopping for a new battery, make sure to check the manufacture date before purchasing.

3) Check oil

It’s always important to check your oil, but it’s even more important during the colder months. The cold weather changes the temperature of your oil, so it’s important to use the proper oil for these conditions.

4) Check antifreeze

It’s very important to check your antifreeze, especially in the winter. Antifreeze lowers the freezing point of water so that your engine can withstand the colder temperatures.

5) Keep car filled up

Imagine driving down the road in a horrible snowstorm and seeing that your gas tank is almost empty. Getting stranded in a snowstorm is not something you want to go through. Make sure you always have gas in your tank to avoid getting stranded.

6) Make sure heating and defrosting units work properly

Driving in a car with no heat in the winter is no fun, and it can make it difficult to drive. When your windows fog up due to condensation, your defrosting unit will become your best friend.

7) Test wipers and check wiper fluid

Without working wipers and fluid, you’ll have a rough winter. Invest in a good pair of wiper blades, or you may regret it later. Also, make sure your wiper fluid is suitable for all temperatures. Without working wipers and wiper fluid, your visibility will be reduced or even eliminated.

8) Inspect belts and hoses

You pretty much only check your belts and hoses when your car goes in for a tune-up, but it’s crucial to make sure they are working properly before winter. The colder temperatures will weaken belts and hoses, and you don’t want something coming loose while you’re driving.

9) Test your 4WD, if you have it

Some cars have four-wheel drive (4WD), which can help improve your traction on the snow and ice. However, don’t think that having 4WD means you can go 80 MPH in a blizzard. Make sure your 4WD is working properly before winter hits hard.

10) Keep emergency kit

It’s essential to always keep an emergency jacket, blanket, pair of boots, gloves, hat, etc. in your car in case you end up stuck on the side of the road in the winter. Also, make sure you have jumper cables, coolant, and, preferably, a spare tire.

Looking for a new car? Check out the current listings in the Automotive section of The Guide Classifieds.

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