Ready, Set, COLD! (Getting Vehicle Ready for Winter)
Posted in Winter Prep on January 19, 2020
When the temperatures plunge, your vehicle better be ready because it faces a whole new set of challenges. Rubber stiffens, glass fogs, fluids freeze. Just thinking about it can get your heart beating faster. So here are some tips for getting ready for those inevitable colder temperatures.
Make sure your tires are in good shape and properly inflated. Traction can be less than ideal on slippery streets, so your tires must have enough tread to grip the road. They should also be inflated properly, and inflation will change as the temperatures go down. One last thing on tires. Do you know how old yours are? They actually have a birthdate printed on them. Old rubber can compromise drivability and handling. Some tires look great but their rubber doesn't handle stresses like it used to. Have your vehicle service facility inspect all of these aspects of your tires so you are riding on tires that are fit to go.
Anyone who lives in an area where the temperatures get down to freezing knows frigid mornings can reveal an unhealthy battery at the most inopportune time. Age also counts when it comes to batteries, so you should know how old and healthy yours is. Special equipment at your service facility can let you know how much more life you can expect out of that battery. It's obviously better to have it replaced before rather than after it fails.
You have to see out your windows and windshield in order to drive safely, so now's the time to have your heater and defroster checked out to make sure they can do their jobs. A few tweaks here and there can make a big difference before you find yourself shivering and fogged up.
And finally, make sure you have some vital emergency supplies. Yes, a blanket can save your life if you are stranded in cold weather. A small shovel can help you dig out of a slippery spot. And your survival may depend on having a little extra food and water on hand, so keep a little supply of bottled water and power bars stored away. Doesn't hurt to have an extra cell phone charger in your vehicle, either.
You may have heard all of this before. Well, trouble happens when you least expect it. Taking a few minutes now can make a huge difference when it rears its ugly head later.