Winter is a tough season for any vehicle owner. The roads and salt are hard on a vehicle’s materials. Driving across snow and ice can be dangerous and put even a cautious driver in trouble. Winter seems like the unluckiest time of year for things to go wrong.
Fortunately, preparation is your key to success. Here is how to prepare your car for winter beforehand:
1. Install Snow Tires
Installing a snow tires Toronto is a must when preparing your car for winter. A premium set of four winter tires come with all sorts of advantages and things to gain. Snow tires vastly improve your ability to steer and grip on the road, providing better safety and traction regardless of how much snow is on the ground or how cold the temperatures are.
Remember, don’t forget to verify that the tread on your tires are still in good condition if they’ve been previously used, before installing them on your vehicle.
2. Fill Up the Tires
While you’re verifying the treat on your snow tires, check to make sure they are properly filled. Throughout the winter season, you may notice your tires need more air than they have.
Checking tire pressure should be done regularly. Fill your tires if necessary. This will help grip dangerous winter roads if you have the recommended air pressure. When it’s low, the risks of sliding and slipping around the road increase.
3. Car Maintenance Check
It doesn’t hurt to do some preventative car maintenance before the winter season starts. Make sure your car battery is good. Have the brakes, lights, fuses, heating systems, electrical, and exhaust systems all checked.
If you can afford to, this is a good step to take because there is a part that wears out. You don’t know where you could end up stranded in the cold. If there ever was a time of year where preventative maintenance was important, it’s winter.
4. Fix Your Heater
If your heater doesn’t work, don’t leave it. You may think all you’re going to be doing are short drives. While that can be the plan, all it takes is for you to get stranded somewhere once with no heat to learn your lesson. A working heater in a car is a necessity. The cost is worth it, no matter how old your car is or what condition it’s in.
We’ll say the same for your car battery. If the issue persists through winter on either the battery or the heater, it could turn out to be more than just an inconvenience.
5. Install Winter Wiper Blades
Winter wiper blades are heavier and can move out that snow and ice a little easier. If you can afford to have them, do so. They do help. You will also want to make sure you have a scraper/brush. A windshield scraper is golden.
There will be times when your car becomes totally covered in snow and ice. It’s not always the easiest to get off. A windshield scraper and snow brush will take care of everything quickly and efficiently.
6. Stock Up On Windshield Washer Fluid
Windshield washer fluid is something you don’t need to run your engine. If you drive on the highway or have an extended trip to make, you will be so glad to have it. Don’t just fill up your windshield washer reservoir before the season. Keep some extra in the vehicle.
No matter where you are, you will always be able to replenish what’s not there and can make sure you continue driving with maximum visibility even in dirty winter conditions.
7. Commit To Keeping The Gas Tank Full
Don’t let your car run on empty for very long come winter. A half-empty gas tank or less can maintain condensation and moist air inside the fuel tank. If this gets out into the fuel line, all sorts of serious issues can happen.
Ideally, always keep your gas tank 3/4 of the way full every winter, regardless of what happens with your car. You’ll also always have gas to get you out of a tough spot if there’s ever an emergency.
8. Pack A Winter Survival Kit
Lastly, make sure there’s a small winter survival kit in the car. Just in case something happens, being cold isn’t fun. Try to throw in some food, blankets, and First Aid supplies. These are the necessities. Make sure you have a spare tire, wheel wrench, and jack in case a tire bursts.
Additionally, you may want to have flares, matches or lighters, tire chains, winter gloves, a flashlight, and extra clothing and footwear. If you don’t already have them, it doesn’t hurt to include some battery jumper cables.
9. Extra Cell Phone Cables
Have an external power bank and a USB charging cable for your phone ready to go in the car. Should you need help and your phone’s battery runs down, you can plug in, charge, and then make the call for roadside assistance or emergency assistance.
Although this isn’t about car maintenance or winter preparation per se, this is a good rule to have for any time of year. Be ready for the worst. If your phone dies on the road and there’s a vehicle issue, have a way to charge it.