It seems like only yesterday that I was writing with eager anticipation about the coming summer weather! Unfortunately, time flies and in the blink of an eye, winter is upon us. Darkening skies, leaves on the road, and chilly winds are just the start...and then comes the sleet, rain, ice, and snow. It makes me shiver just thinking about it.
But thinking about it and preparing for it is a lot better than experiencing it with a broken-down car on the side of the road! Here are a few simple suggestions for getting your vehicle winter ready:
- Make sure all your headlights work. Shorter days mean longer hours of darkness; you'll probably leave and drive home in the dark. Rain and snow will also decrease your visibility, and that of other drivers around you, so make sure they can see you.
- Rain, snow, and road spray take a toll on wiper blades, so get them changed.
- All the rubber parts on and in your car are a lot less flexible in cold weather. This is the perfect time to inspect and make sure belts and door/window seals aren't cracked.
- Check the pressure and tread wear on your tires. If your tire wear is uneven, have a mechanic check your car's alignment. Also check your spare and make sure it's ready for service if needed.
- Now's the time to check all fluid levels for their freezing points and replace the water in your windshield wiper container with freeze-resistant wiper fluid.
- Make sure your defroster works efficiently and always clear your windshield of road debris where your wipers don't reach.
- Your battery, starting, and charging systems should all be examined as battery performance declines in cold temperatures. Antifreeze should also be tested for maximum freezing point.
Remember, when driving in bad weather, confidence in your vehicle is well worth the price of professional service. Take the time and make the effort now for peace of mind in the coming months.