Car on snow

Prepare Your Vehicle Before the First Snowfall

As the weather cools down, we all know the inevitable is on the horizon: snow. Prepare for the harsh winter months in advance with some simple steps to keep your vehicle running smoothly until the spring.

You should start by checking the battery strength. Batteries can be affected by extreme cold temperatures, so if you’ve had trouble with it in the fall, those issues are likely to worsen as the temperatures drop. Don’t get left out in the cold – if the strength on your battery is weak, have it replaced.

Check your tires for tread and air. Both will affect your vehicle’s handling on the road. Many people also switch to winter tires. Made of more pliable rubber, it’s best to make the switch when the temperature is consistently around 7 degrees Celsius to ensure you get a better grip on cold, icy and snowy roads.

You should also have your engine and antifreeze checked. Low fluids can freeze in sub-zero temperatures and cause your vehicle to falter. 

Have your brakes checked while you’re at it. Any squeaking or squealing should be addressed as this could indicate wear on your brake pad. Have those replaced before the winter sets in to ensure better stopping time.

Don’t forget to swap out summer washer fluid for a winter one. With a lower freezing point, this will ensure your fluid doesn’t freeze when you need it – leaving you with a windshield you can’t see through. On that note, you’ll also want to check your wiper blades. Make sure you don’t have any rips and that they clean your windshield properly, otherwise, replace them.

Finally, make sure you’re ready for whatever happens and keep a winter emergency kit in the car. This should include a warm blanket, non-perishable snacks, a shovel, kitty litter, flashlight and extra hats and gloves.

For more car maintenance tips, please read our other blogs.

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