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Tips to Get Your Car Ready for Cold Weather

In Case Old Man Winter is Not Messing Around This Year!

Do you remember where you were during the 2003 March blizzard? Back then 31.8 inches of powder stopped the mail and snarled deliveries of food and beverages (including adult ones!) While this winter may not prove to be as wily as 2003, 2010 and even 2016, prepping your car for the worst before it gets cold is never a bad idea.

A few things to check:

Windshield Wiper Fluid: Look for one containing the words “winter or winter blend.” Make sure to top off your reservoir now and even consider storing one in your car. It can be very dangerous to be without wiper fluid during a storm.

Oil change: If you’re due for an oil change, consider a lower viscosity oil for the colder months like a 5W-30. Believe it or not, that ‘W’ stands for winter.

Windshield wipers:  When selecting an item like toothpaste, a lower priced brand like Aquafresh can be just as good as Colgate. However, windshield wipers follow the adage, “you get what you pay for.” Look for trustworthy brands and be willing to spend a little more. We recommend the Bosch and Denso brands and we especially like the new blade style models.

Anti-freeze:  In the winter, the engine cooling system should be filled with a 50/50 mixture of antifreeze and distilled water to prevent freezing and boiling over. Check your coolant reservoir when the engine is cold and add coolant if necessary. Never open a coolant reservoir when your engine is hot!

Deicer: Prestone makes a product for use on your windshield and it has a built in ice scraper. It all depends on the make or year of your car and how cold it gets, but it couldn’t hurt to have one of these handy when your defroster is not cutting it, or worse, if it doesn’t work.

Tires:  Colder weather will cause the pressure in your tires to drop. Low tire pressure can lead to premature tire wear, poor fuel economy, and compromise driving safety. Check your tire pressure in the morning and fill to the recommended pressure for your specific make and model. Also check your tread depth to make sure you have sufficient traction. Don’t have a tread depth gauge? No problem! You can use a coin!

Ice scraper: If it’s all plastic or the brush has been matted down, it’s time to replace it. If you’ve ever used a broom or a small shovel (not advised – it can scratch) then maybe its time for a snowbroom/scraper. This model is ideal for larger vehicles like trucks and SUVs. It is illegal and very uncool to leave snow on top of your car while driving.

Speaking of SUVs, we have some great ones on our lot. Don’t see what you are looking for? Use our vehicle request form and one of our friendly auto consultants will find it for you! This month we are offering a $100 VISA gift card when you purchase a car with us.

AutoTrek, your local auto broker, doesn’t want winter weather to wreck your commute. Stay tuned for more car tips and tricks in upcoming posts.

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