Winter always hits when you aren’t expecting it. One morning you wake up to several inches of snow that you now have to shovel from your driveway. As you sweat while heaving piles of snow away, you realize that your car may be about as prepared for the wintry weather as you are—which is not at all! Here are some winter car care tips you haven’t thought of to help you make it through this winter.
Replace Your Tires and Check Pressure
Not surprisingly, your tires are going to be important in snowy, icy, or cold weather conditions. You first want to make sure that you have the right tires, so now is a good time to change out your regular tires for winter tires. Winter or snow tires are designed to improve traction. They have a deeper tread depth and special rubber that does better in the cold conditions.
Next, you will want to check your tire pressure at least once weekly or invest in a tire pressure monitor. Colder weather can actually lower tire pressure. Driving on low tire pressure can lead to tire damage and poor gas mileage. Checking your pressure regularly through the winter can help you maintain good tires.
Replace Your Wiper Blades
Many people forget about their wiper blades, but they need to be replaced regularly. Check your owner’s manual to find the correct size of blade for your wipers. You can purchase new ones from almost any store, then replace your blades. You will be grateful when you need to use your wiper blades during the next storm and you no longer have that annoying squeak as the blades try to clear your windshield.
Check Your Lights
This is a good time to check your lights also. Sunset is earlier so you’re probably driving home in the dark. It’s important to make sure that your vehicle’s lights are working and providing the best and brightest illumination so that your car is visible. If a bulb is out, you can easily fix it, or if it’s foggy where you live, consider finding a brighter replacement light. Make sure to also remove any snow that might be covering your lights before you hit the road.
Do a Full System Check
Before you head to a mechanic to make sure everything is good, you can run your own check on your vehicle. Using an OBDII Monitor, you can run a check of multiple systems in your car. Check your car’s fluids, such as your coolant levels, antifreeze, and washer fluids. Also, double-check that your window defroster is worker. The defroster is going to keep your windows from icing up, so you will want to know that it’s working properly. The last thing you want is for your car to break down during a snowstorm and leave you stranded.
Grease Your Car Locks
Before you head out into the cold, make sure to lubricate your door locks. Especially in extreme cold, your locks may get frozen. Lubricating the locks can help keep them working smoothly even in the cold.
Pack Your Emergency Kit
If you haven’t packed your emergency kit, this is a good time to pack it, Then make sure to store it in your trunk before you drive out. You never know when you might need it, and it is better to be safe than sorry, especially in wintry conditions.
These care tips can help you feel more ready to take on the snowy, wintry weather that happens every year. Remember these tips earlier in the fall so you can be sure to be more prepared.