Although you may not be ready for winter, you need to make sure your vehicle is equipped to handle winter driving challenges! These five simple winter maintenance checks will help get you ready for winter weather:
- Check Your Tires
You should check your tire pressure regularly, including the pressure of your spare, but it is especially important to check it before winter sets in. Find your vehicle’s proper pressure levels in your owner’s manual or on the sticker located on the driver-side door jamb. You should also check your tire tread depth. Tires should have at least 2/32″ of depth to be safe.
- Check Your Antifreeze
Ensure your vehicle has a 50/50 mix of water and antifreeze. The antifreeze amount should be kept at the full line. Clean, quality antifreeze provides the essential winter protection your vehicle needs.
- Check Your Battery
Frigid cold weather can break down car batteries internally and can accelerate the rate of corrosion on battery terminals. This results in a battery that is more likely to die and leave you stranded. It is important to check the battery cables and ensure they are clean and securely attached to the terminals. Car batteries have a three to five year service life, depending on environment and vehicle usage.
- Check Your Washer Fluid
Salt, slush, and snow continually bombards our windshields in winter, so we end up using much more washer fluid that usual. Fill the windshield washer fluid tank with a winter cleaning formula that contains enough antifreeze components to keep it from freezing.
- Check Your Wipers
The fluid is only part of the equation. You also need wipers that are in good shape and do the job of keeping your windshield clean. The blades should make full contact with the glass, completely clearing it of grime. Replace blades that miss spots or leave streaks. In areas where snow is abundant, consider installing winter wiper blades that wrap the blade frame in a rubber boot to reduce ice and snow buildup. These wipers assure good contact between the blade and the glass.
Do these maintenance steps yourself, or visit your auto service professional to make sure you are good to go before winter weather hits!