The winter’s frigid weather can put extra stress on your vehicle. This means you need to make a few preparations before the cold weather sets in. Here are some of the most important winter car care tips to remember.
Test Your Battery
A weak car battery is bound to leave you stranded at some point. When temperatures start to drop below freezing, extra juice is required to start your vehicle. To be on the safe side, have a volt test performed on your battery. Some auto parts stores will perform this test for free. If you need to buy a new battery, spend the money on a high-quality replacement. Cheaper car batteries typically don’t last nearly as long. Even worse, they may fail to perform on the coldest of days.
Check the Coolant/Antifreeze Level
Coolant is one of your car’s most important fluids. It helps keep the engine cool and helps prevent rust from developing on various components. During the wintertime, the coolant is also responsible for preventing the engine from freezing. If your coolant level is too low, the performance of your vehicle’s heater will suffer. At times, it may even start to blow out cool air.
Inspect Your Wipers
Ideally, your wipers should be replaced once a year. Old wiper blades can’t effectively remove ice and snow from the windshield. If you’re traveling during wintry conditions, visibility becomes a big concern. The best approach is to not take any chances.
Check Your Windshield
When traveling on busy highways, it’s easy to get your windshield damaged. In the blink of an eye, a rock could suddenly smash into your front glass. You’ll then be left with a small crack or chip, which will eventually become worse. Cold weather causes cracks to gradually expand. If you want to avoid complete windshield replacement, have the damage repaired before winter.
Always Keep at Least a Half Tank of Fuel
During the winter season, make it a point to keep at least a half-tank of fuel at all times. This will help prevent any accumulated water from freezing your fuel pump. Remember, a malfunctioning fuel pump will stop your vehicle dead in its tracks. Furthermore, keeping fuel in the tank gives you more security during emergencies. In the event you get stuck in a snowstorm, the extra fuel also enables you to keep the engine running for heat.
Don’t allow the frozen conditions to wreak havoc on your car. A little extra maintenance is well worth the peace of mind. When the cold weather arrives, you’ll be one step ahead of the game.