Winterize Your Vehicle

Winter is coming… Before we know it, we’ll be bundled up and watching for any signs of snow and ice. Before Jack Frost comes to town, it’s best to get your car winter-ready. Here are some tips to winterize your vehicle now.

Check the Battery.

When the weather gets cold, the chemical reactions that generate power in your car’s battery actually slow down. At extreme temperatures, a fully charged battery will only have half the amp-hour capacity. Additionally, cold weather will cause the engine to require more current from the battery to get started. So if your battery isn’t running at full power, your car may have difficulty starting.

Change the Wiper Blades.

If snow and sleet are flying at your windshield, you’ll want wiper blades that work to clear your view. If your current blades look worn or frayed at all, it’s a good idea to replace them before the weather changes.

Refill Wiper Fluid.

During times of snow, ice or cold, you’ll notice a lot of buildup on your windshield after driving or being parked outside for a while. In order to have a properly cleaned line of sight throughout the season, top off your fluid reservoir. For this weather, the best option is a brand with lower freezing temperatures.

Check the Tire Tread.

Low tire tread could cause you to slip and slide on the roads with freezing moisture as they will have less grip on the road. In a tire that’s at about half tread, traction when accelerating on wet surfaces will fall about 14%, and braking distance will increase by about 7%. Both could be dangerous! If there’s any question about your tire’s tread – use the penny test

The Penny Test

Place a penny into a tread groove, head down. In a properly treaded tire, Lincoln’s head will be covered starting right above the eyes. If you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, you’ll need new tires.

Check the Tire Pressure.

In our previous blog, we talked about the importance of keeping your tires properly inflated in the winter. Low tire pressure could lead to low gas mileage, increased stopping time, and possibly overheating which could lead to a tire blowout. As the weather gets colder, it’s important to check tire pressure frequently and inflate whenever necessary.

Create an Emergency Kit.

When inclement weather hits, you never know what may happen, so it’s best to be prepared for anything. Having a spare phone charger, snacks, a flashlight, blanket, gloves, and jumper cables are a few essentials to have stored in your car – just in case.

Change the oil.

Cold weather can reduce oil’s effectiveness as the cold can cause oil to thicken up, making it harder to circulate through your engine. Before temperatures drop to extreme, it’s a good idea to change your oil to one with a thinner viscosity.

Before winter hits, come into Performance Auto for a full car tune up, find out which oil is best for your car in the cold, tire rotation, or anything else you need to winterize your vehicle.

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