The importance of preparing your car for winter is an incredibly important topic, as well as something that you have to do every single year.
Still, there are some people who downplay the significance of this move due to the fact that they don’t live in a region where winters are particularly harsh.
Others see this as an additional expense that they could live without. The problem, nonetheless, lies in the fact that a failure to properly winterize your vehicle might endanger lives.
Therefore, here are several tips that you have to abide by in order to prepare your car for winter.
1. Replace Your Tires
The first thing you need to do is to replace your tires. In some countries, the law regarding the winter tires is based on a certain date, while, in some areas, the road conditions (like the first snow or a certain temperature) are used as a determiner.
Regardless of which is the case, it’s always better to get your winter tires in time (as early as the autumn).
Technically, there’s no opposite law (the one regarding summer tires), which would, technically, mean that you can use your winter tires all-year-round. Still, this will add to their wear and tear, as well as diminish your fuel efficiency.
2. Go For Winter-Grade Oil
The next thing you need to consider is your car’s oil. You see, different oils have different viscosity (density). This determines the performance of the vehicle during some of the most extreme temperatures.
In general, 5W oils are recommended for winter use, nonetheless, there are some synthetic oils that can pass the test even with 0W ranking. This is due to the fact that they’re optimized, by their very nature to heat up fairly quickly, as soon as the engine starts running.
3. Focus On The Windshield
Your control of the vehicle depends on your ability to adjust your driving habits to the road conditions.
Now, the assessment of these road conditions depends on several factors, one of which is the visual estimate of your surroundings. Chances are that you’ll notice that the road is wet or slippery long before you actually hear or feel it.
In order to prepare for this eventuality, you need to focus on the windshield. This basically means two things.
The first one is to use a winter windshield wiper fluid and the latter is to check if your windshield blades are worn out and replace them.
4. Servicing The Vehicle
Another thing you need to take into consideration is the fact that any malfunction, during winter, might be quite harder to handle. Why? Well, because in order to look bellow your vehicle or simply replace a flat tire, you’ll have to get all wet and muddy.
Also, seeing as how it all takes place outdoors, chances are that you’ll have to try and handle the situation out there in the blistering cold.
This is why specialists in mechanic and auto service like those behind Epping, suggest that you should be proactive and handle this situation before the winter finally arrives.
5. Engine Coolant And Antifreeze Levels
One more thing you need to take into consideration is the fact that (other than just your car’s oil) other vehicle-related fluids tend to be affected by the cold weather, as well.
What this means is that you need to consider adding some special substances that are designed towards making these fluids more resilient against cold weather.
The best thing about this is the fact that you can get both engine coolant and antifreeze at any auto supply store and virtually any gas station. In other words, even getting some at the very last moment shouldn’t be a problem.
6. Check Your Lights
Even with a completely clear windshield, your vision during the winter will be somewhat impaired. Why? Well, because atmospheric occurrences like snow and rain are more common, as well as the fog.
Also, even with the exact same commute, you’ll spend more time driving at night (as well as more time driving, in general, due to the adjusted speed).
All in all, ensuring that your vehicle’s lights (both front and back) are operational is more than a bit important. Checking this at least once per week is more than recommended.
The thing is that your winter car maintenance really doesn’t end here. Sure, proper preparation can make the vehicle more winter-proof and more resilient to things like rust, road salt, and low temperatures, nonetheless, you still have to be on your toes.
Regularly take your car to a mechanic, make sure that the tires are properly inflated and do a regular visual inspection of the vehicle.
Even a tiny crack, light malfunction or damage to your winter blades can be a major problem out on the open road.