Prepare for Winter Driving

Vehicle driving in the snow. The importance of preparing for winter driving.

As the cold winter months meet our daily commutes, it’s important to have a car that’s prepared for whatever the season throws your way. Due to the colder temps, your vehicle needs extra attention to ensure a safe, smooth ride. Plus, it’s always smart to be prepared in case an unexpected issue arises.

Double Check Your Fluids

Whether you’re a car whiz, or prefer to leave it up to the professionals, it’s important to check all of your car’s fluid levels to ensure you have enough to make it through the winter months.

  • Coolant is critical. Be sure to have the correct antifreeze to water ratio in your pipes to keep your radiator from freezing. If you’re a do-it-yourselfer, be sure to read up on your vehicle’s owner’s manual to know the right combination of fluids.
  • Change your oil too, as some mechanics may recommend a thinner oil for winter’s cooler temperatures.
  • Wiper fluid should be kept refilled. For the cooler temperatures be sure to switch to a freeze-resistant fluid.

Inspect Your Tires

Ensure you have proper tire traction before the snow and ice are an everyday occurrence. Low air pressure and worn tires are a recipe for disaster on wet roads. Check your owner’s manual for their recommended PSI to make sure your tires are at the proper pressure level.

Test Your Battery Capacity

The cold temperatures can majorly impact your battery’s capacity. Have a professional double check that your battery, cables, terminals and fluid are working properly. Cracks, breaks and loose connections can cause your car not to start.

Be Prepared – Just In Case

Though keeping an emergency kit in your car is always a smart idea, it’s especially critical to be prepared come winter. In addition to non-seasonable emergency kit items, such as road flares, a jack, a lug wrench and a first aid kit, it’s also key to pack for cold temperatures. Update your emergency kit to include:

  • Flashlight – and an extra set of batteries!
  • Blanket
  • Snow attire such as gloves, hat and boots for you and whoever else rides in your vehicle on a normal basis
  • Bag of kitty litter or sand – this can provide traction if you’re stuck
  • Ice scraper and brush
  • Small shovel
  • Leak-proof container of coolant
  • Non-perishable snacks

Take the time to give your car some TLC before winter hits – you’ll have peace of mind knowing you’ve winterized your car and you’ll be equipped in case of an emergency.

If you’re concerned your car won’t make it through another winter, we’re here to help. TruStone Financial offers low interest auto loans on new and used vehicles, so you can drive a car you have confidence in. Contact us to get pre-approved for your auto loan before you shop for your next vehicle!

Share this blog post’s link with your family and friends so they can be prepared for winter too!

 

Editor’s Note: Parts of this post were taken from DMV.org