Winter driving doesn’t have to be dangerous. With the right preparation and a healthy dose of caution, your vehicle will be ready to tackle everything from plummeting temperatures to icy streets to muddy shoes with the best floor liners for cars. Put these X smart strategies on your weekend to-do list for October and November.
Check Your Tires
Sufficient tread provides traction, keeping your tires on the road even when conditions become slick. To see whether it’s time for new tires, put a penny into the groove with Lincoln’s head first. If you can still see his entire face, you should have tires replaced before the weather cools down. Even if your tires have plenty of lifespan left, they still need attention. Cold weather results in a faster loss of tire pressure, so inflate them to the manufacturer-recommended pounds per square inch (psi) rating as necessary. Live in a location that gets substantial snow each season? Consider swapping out your standard tires for snow tires.
No one thinks they could be stranded by a winter storm, but packing an emergency kit will keep you safe if that situation does arise. Outfit your vehicle’s trunk with flares, extra blankets, flashlights, nonperishable food items like granola bars, bottled water, spare cell phone batteries, cat litter for tire traction and a set of warm clothes complete with coat and gloves.
Replace Burnt-Out Light Bulbs
Boost your vehicle’s visibility with fresh new bulbs for your front and rear lights. You can also call attention to your car and protect your paint job from the elements with front end covers car bras. Clean the lenses of your auto bulbs or have scratched surfaces refinished to make sure your lights appear bright to other drivers.
Replenish Your Fluids
Make sure your vehicle has enough antifreeze, and confirm that the heater and defrosters work correctly if you haven’t turned them on all summer. Fill up your windshield wiper fluid and stash a scraper in your car for frosty mornings. While you’re at it, change your wiper blades to preserve safe visibility in poor weather. When it’s time for an oil change, opt for a formula with lower viscosity when the weather gets cold.
Stay Tuned for the Forecast
When inclement weather is predicted, check the latest forecast before setting off on a long drive. Whenever possible, rearrange your travel plans when a snowstorm is headed to your area. Abide by municipal state of emergency instructions to stay off the road unless absolutely necessary.
Test Your Battery
Cold weather can be tough on your vehicle’s battery. Check the terminals of the battery and wipe the case clean of accumulated debris or corrosion. A professional garage can let you know whether the car’s electrical system is at peak performance. You should also add jumper cables to your emergency kit in case you do stall out when the temperature drops.
To make sure your car looks as amazing in the spring as it does at the end of autumn, park in the garage whenever possible. No garage? Invest in an outdoor custom car cover that shields your vehicle’s finish from dust, dirt and debris.