Tips for Winterizing Your Car

Tips for Winterizing Your Car

Winter driving involves ice, sleet and snow that often leads to slower traffic, unforeseen dangers, hazardous road conditions and hot tempers. So, how do you keep yourself safe under such circumstances? Follow these guidelines for preparing your vehicle for the winter.

Check the Antifreeze Levels

It is essential to have the right levels of antifreeze in your car. Antifreeze is nothing but a mixture of water and glycol. While it is vital to have the correct levels all year round, the winter season is more demanding. Glycol helps prevent the liquids from freezing. It is suggested to have the glycol (coolant) and water in a 50/50 ratio.

This mixture also has a low freezing point and allows heat to move from the engine to the insides of your vehicle. Using 100 percent coolant will cause your engine to fail. Similarly, using 100 percent of the water will cause the engine to overheat. Hence, \a 50/50 ratio is necessary for optimal performance.

Antifreeze also prevents the building up of corrosion and rust from building up on the cooling system. So, remember to change the antifreeze at a frequency as recommended by your vehicle’s manufacturer.

Change The Tires

Using winter tires will reduce braking distance and give you a safer driving experience during the winter. These tires are equipped with a special tread that provides an exceptional road grip on mud, snow, and icy conditions. This is a significant advantage over all-season tires. Winter tires also have broader and deeper grooves that grip the road better. This gives you a 25 percent shorter braking distance than summer tires.

You will be surprised to know that winter tires offer greater safety even on dry roads in the cold season. This efficiency comes from using special rubber compounds that remain soft even under extreme cold. The softer the tire, the better it is at adapting to the road surface. This gives you not only greater safety but also the best possible traction.

Check the Battery

Obtaining a trouble-free performance during the winter is possible when your battery is in good condition. Remember that the average battery life is about five to six years, and a battery over three years old must be tested annually. Before winter hits, take your car to a professional have the battery tested, getting it replaced if needed. Freezing temperatures weaken batteries and can leave you stranded in the middle of a snowstorm. Consider carrying a spare set of jumper cables for jump-starting your vehicle during emergencies.

Keep Moisture Out of Your Car

Fogged up windows restrict your visibility during winter. The main reason that windows fog up is because of moisture present inside your car. Here are some handy pointers that you can use for preventing this situation

  • Check your owner’s manual for replacing the cabin air filters. Dirty filters prevent the circulation of air through air conditioning and ventilation.

  • Check for leaks around your windows and sunroof.

  • Consider using all-weather floor mats that can be wiped dry of the snow and moisture from your shoes.

  • Clear the water drains, especially where the front windshield and the hood meets. Also, take this precaution in the back near the top of the trunk.

Winter is challenging for both drivers and vehicles. From antifreeze to batteries, there is a range of checks you need to carry out for the optimal performance of your car. Follow these pointers to enjoy stress-free winter driving.