The winter season is quickly approaching, and with it comes freezing temperatures. It’s important to get your car ready for the cold weather by checking all of the fluid levels and making sure that you have enough antifreeze in your radiator. This blog post will go into detail about how to prepare your car for winter so you can avoid any costly repairs this time next year!
Start by checking your radiator to make sure there is enough antifreeze (between 50-100%). If the level is too low, it could lead to a crack in your radiator which would allow coolant to leak out and reduce airflow.
Don’t underestimate how much snow, rain or sleet you can get during winters. Make sure that your vehicle’s wipers are clean and that they function properly.
If the wipers begin to streak across the glass, replace them with new ones. It’s also important to make sure your windshield is clean so that the wiper fluid isn’t diluted and provides good visibility.
During wintertime, it is a good idea to check the air pressure in all of your tires. If there is a significant difference in the pressure of one tire compared to another, it could lead to an accident or blow out on the highway. If you get a flat tire in the winter, it could be devastating for your car, and can cause serious damage. It’s best to check all of the pressure during the fall season and re-check again this winter before you need to drive on them.
Lastly, you will want to make sure that all of the fluids in your vehicle are in good condition. It is recommended for most vehicles to have their oil changed typically every 3,000 miles. If you wait any longer than that, it could lead to engine problems and a costly repair bill. If you notice a burning smell, or a rattling sound while your driving, it’s important to make an appointment with the service department right away.
Coolant/antifreeze is designed to protect your engine in hot and cold temperatures. If your radiator needs to be flushed, the service department will be able to do so and check the coolant levels.
One thing that people often don’t think about during cold weather is battery performance in colder temperatures. Most batteries will need more cranking power in order for your engine to start up. Your car will warn you if there is a problem with your battery, but you should also check the water level. If it is low, have it replaced as soon as possible!
Additional Read: 8 Things you must consider before switching to an Electric Car
Winter is just around the corner and if you haven’t purchased any accessories for your car yet, it’s time to start stocking up. Below are some must-have car accessories that will help make winter driving a lot easier on you this year.
Cloth Headrest Cover – To keep warm during cold winter months, cover your headrest with a cloth material. It will insulate you from the cold and protect your neck from getting sore.
Fuzzy Seat Cover – When paired with a heated seat, fuzzy seat covers will keep your bottom warm without being too hot to sit on. Unless of course, you want that extra warmth!
Hand/Foot Heat Packs – If your car doesn’t have heated seats, or sometimes our hands and/or feet get too cold while driving around, these heat packs are essential. Just slide them into a pair of gloves or shoes for the heat to be released.
Steering Wheel Cover – Another great way to help keep your hands warm is with an insulated steering wheel cover. It also does a great job of minimizing blisters that may form on your hands if you spend hours driving in the winter.
Battery Jumper and/or Charger – When the weather is bad, it is always best to have a battery jumper and charger. Power surges are common during winter storms, so if you find yourself stranded because of a dead battery, it’s important to have a backup plan.
Spare Tire – Even with all the new technology that comes with your car today, you should still keep an extra tire or two in the trunk of your car. Today’s tires are made to last and can usually hold up for several years, but it never hurts to be safe.
Emergency Kit – If your car breaks down in cold weather, it is essential to have an emergency kit on hand. This will help keep you safe and comfortable until you can call someone for help.
Additional Read: Do Brakes Need to be Serviced? How often?
The winter season will soon be upon us, so it’s important to think about ways you can prevent getting stranded on the road.
If you live in an area with freezing temperatures or snow, a common problem that drivers face is having doors freeze shut. In order to avoid being stuck in your car for hours on end, follow these steps:
No matter how cold it is outside, it’s always a good idea to keep a window open. This will allow heat and warm air to get inside the car. If you have power windows, use them as well so that you don’t have to struggle with getting stuck doors open if your battery dies while you are driving. (For older vehicles with manual windows, it is a good idea to carry a hammer around in case you get stuck attempting to open the door.)
If you can’t open your doors, step out of the vehicle and simply turn it off. If your battery has died on the road – make sure you are parked close to another vehicle that can be used for jump starting or call 911. Cold weather puts extra stress on batteries, so this could be an early warning sign that it is time to replace them and/or they need servicing. In some extreme cases, there might be enough power left in your battery for one last attempt at turning on your car before completely dying.
If you have a heat source such as hand warmers or an emergency blanket, it can be used to warm up your car’s exterior. Place them near the doors and let them work their magic for a few minutes before trying again to open the door. You can also try running your engine for a few minutes to see if that provides enough heat for you to get the door open.
If all of these measures fail, it’s time to break out the ice scraper and use some elbow grease! Take your scraper and slowly work on removing as much ice as possible. Be careful not to slip and fall while you are working on your car, and always keep a safe distance away when removing ice from windows.
If you have any questions about how to de-ice your door in the winter season, or if it just isn’t working for you – make sure to contact our auto mechanics in Calgary today!