With the temperatures dropping, it’s important to get your car ready for Winter so that you’re not left stranded in the freezing cold, or stuck sliding out in the middle of a snowstorm. Winterizing your vehicle is more than just making sure you’ve got the right set of winter tires on, and we’ve got all the tips to help you get prepared.
- Battery -It’s important to have your battery tested to make sure it has enough juice to withstand cold weather, as it requires more power to start in cold weather. If you are already having battery issues, your risk of issues is increased even more. If that’s the case, it’s best to install a new battery before winter comes.
- Cooling system – It is recommended to maintain a ratio between 50/50 and 70/30 of antifreeze to water. Ask your technician what antifreeze should be used for your vehicle and the appropriate coolant-to-water ratio to prevent against corrosion and potential freezing.
- Washer fluid – It’s good to keep your washer fluid full during the winter months, as a snowstorm can exhaust a large amount of it. It’s also really important to buy fluid that is for -40 degree weather (the blue stuff). This will ensure it does not freeze in your reservoir, which can cause damage to the tank.
- Winter safety kit – It’s good to have a small winter safety kit in your car, in case of emergencies. Things to include in your kit are: first aid kit, matches, flares, flashlight, ice scraper, non perishable snacks and beverages, jumper cables, warm clothing or a blanket.
- Brakes – Now, brakes aren’t necessarily damaged by the cold, it’s good to do an overall inspection to ensure optimal performance while driving in the winter conditions.
- Winter tires – Now, these are a given. With the heavy snow that we get, it’s crucial for your own safety and for the safety of others on the road to get winter tires. They are made with softer rubber to withstand colder weather, which allows them to grip to the road better. This will help prevent you from sliding out while stopping, or taking turns. Yes, winter tires can be expensive, but repairing your vehicle after an accident caused by not having winter tires is even more. As the temperature begins to drop, it’s important to also check your tire pressure to ensure your tires are full for best performance.
As we’re already nearing November, winter is going to be here faster than you think. It’s good to get ahead of the game and be prepared before it’s too late. As for your winter tires, it’s good to get them changed as soon as possible before the first snow storm, as everywhere will be booked by then.