Posted by Performance Auto Specialists Preventative Maintenance

Winterizing Your Vehicle

Winter is just around the corner, so it is time to start considering how you will prepare your vehicle for winter driving conditions. Follow these recommendations before the winter season arrives to make sure your vehicle is properly prepared:

Have Your Vehicle Serviced

Having your vehicle serviced will help prepare it for the challenges winter weather can pose. It is recommended that your auto care provider installs a battery at 600 CCA or above for optimal winter performance, since battery power decreases as the temperature drops. If you already have battery issues, your risk of breaking down increases in harsh conditions. Prevent corrosion and potential freezing in your cooling system by maintaining a ratio of between 50/50 and 70/30 of antifreeze to water. Although cold weather won’t necessarily hurt your brakes, an inspection can help ensure the best performance. You should also have your belts, hoses, spark plugs, wires, and cables serviced to make sure your vehicle does not break down in the cold.

Winter Tires

All-season tires can be used in winter conditions, but they will not provide you the maximum performance. Installing winter tires is especially beneficial for those who live in extremely cold temperatures. When the temperature consistently stays around or below freezing, the rubber compounds in non-winter tires harden, making it harder for the tires to grip the road. Winter tires will provide better traction in harsh conditions like snow, ice, and slush.

Check Changing Temperatures

Changing temperatures can affect your traction and driving ability if you are not prepared. You will have better traction at 0° than at 32° because the surfaces become more slippery at higher temperatures. Check to see how the temperatures may change if you have a long drive ahead in the winter. 

Washer Fluid

A snowstorm can exhaust a large amount of windshield wiper fluid, so refill it frequently with washer fluid formulated for winter conditions. If you are unsure whether your washer fluid is formulated for winter, add a bottle of washer fluid antifreeze to the reservoir.

Emergency Preparedness

If you ever get stuck in a winter storm while driving, do not leave your car as you may risk losing sight of it. Put your dome lights on to attract attention. Do not run your car for long periods of time; turn it on long enough to stay warm, and then turn it off again to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. 

Performance Auto Specialists

Performance Auto Specialists services all makes and models of cars, trucks, SUVs, and minivans. Whether you need brake repair, engine repair, A/C repair, or emissions services, Performance Auto Specialists has you covered. Contact us today!

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Performance Auto Specialists has offered affordable, reliable repair and maintenance to Wilmington residents since 1991.