5 Ways to Prepare your Car for the Winter

Toyota Winter Driving Vehicles

Your car is designed to keep you safe on the road but can face different issues during the winter season. When the temperatures drop, different parts of the vehicle can be affected and fail to function correctly. If you want to reduce the risk of a collision and increase the lifespan of your car, there are a few ways that you can prepare the vehicle before driving it in harsh weather conditions.

 

  1. Switch to Winter Tires
    The type of tires that you use on your vehicle will influence how well the car stays put on the road when driving on wet or slippery roads. Consider switching to winter tires, which have more traction due to their rubber compounds and tread patterns. If you plan to drive on roads that have snow, consider looking for snow tires that have studs in them to avoid slippage.

  2. Keep Your Battery in Good Shape
    Your battery will determine if you have the power to operate your vehicle, making it necessary to keep it in good condition during the winter months. The battery can crack and wear down quickly due to the cold temperatures outdoors, which requires removing the plastic cap to check the engine oil to ensure that it has the correct grade of oil. An engine block heater can also be installed in the engine to ensure it continues to work well in freezing temperatures.

  3. Inspect the Cooling System
    You can also inspect the cooling system for cracks or leaks that may be present on the radiator. All of the hoses that are in place should be flexible when they're squeezed. The cooling system also needs to be flushed at least every two years to reduce the risk of corrosion that can form. Replace the coolant with a mixture of 40/60 in colder weather conditions to prevent it from freezing in the low temperatures.

  4. Protect the Exterior and Interior
    Protecting the exterior of your car is necessary to prevent damage to the paint due to salt and ice that is present on the road. Apply a fresh coat of wax and make it a point to wash it each week to prevent grime or dirt from settling into the surface. Waxing the alloy wheels on the car can also prevent rust from forming when moisture is present. The underbody and wheel wells also need to be washed regularly to remove salt that can build up. The interior of the car is also in need of protection with the use of plastic or rubber floormats that can protect the floors.

  5. Allow the Engine to Warm Up
    Get in the habit of warming up the vehicle each time that you drive it to ensure that the oil has a chance to heat up and lubricate the parts before it begins to operate. Although older engines need to warm up, modern engines also need to warm up to avoid damage or wear that can occur over time. You can allow it to idle for several minutes while brushing snow off of the car and ice off of the windows as you prepare to drive. Don't allow the vehicle to idle for too long, which can cause wear and tear on the automatic transmission.

If you want to learn more about how to prepare your car for the winter season ahead, we welcome you to contact or visit our dealership today. Our team members are here to assist you and can help you to explore our large inventory of vehicles.

Categories: Safety