If you ladies are anything like me, I tend to leave all things related to vehicles to my husband. I was surprised at how many aspects of “winterizing a car” I could do myself. Here are some great tips from Autozone:
Driving in winter with AutoZone: simple precautions to keep your car running smoothly this winter season:
- Battery power. This is an ideal time of year to make sure your battery’s posts and connections are corrosion-free and that your battery has all the water it needs. The best news? AutoZone performs battery checks for free, so stop by to have a technician test its ability to hold a charge. No one wants to get caught in a blizzard with a dead battery!
- Blades of hazard. Windshield wiper blades work effectively for one year at most, and should really be replaced every six months. Be sure to invest in new blades when yours are cracked, cut, torn, streaking or chattering. Also, ensure your windshield washer fluid reservoir is full of washer fluid, and do not try to refill with water as it freezes in cooler months. Look for de-icer washer fluid at AutoZone to help break through snow and ice.
- Oil it up. Oil sometimes thickens as it gets colder, and can’t lubricate your engine properly if too cool. Check your owner’s manual for guidance on which oil to use in different climates and temperatures.
- The pressure’s on. It’s very important to check your tire pressure when temperatures drop. Tires must be properly inflated to maintain good driving traction, which is sometimes jeopardized in snowy, icy or even just wet conditions. Check your owner’s manual for target tire pressure.
- It’s all in the mix. Try to have a 50-50 mix of antifreeze (coolant) and water inside your radiator. This mix will help prevent freezing even in outrageously cold temperatures. You can check the mixture with an inexpensive antifreeze tester from AutoZone. When at home, make sure to dispose of the old antifreeze properly. Consult with local authorities, as many areas accept used fluids as part of recycling programs.
- Do you have four-wheel drive? If so, now is a good time to ensure it’s working properly – especially since the cold climates are more likely to call for its use. Check to see that the system engages
- Wax on wax off. A waxing coat on your car can act as a deflector of snow and ice. It keeps the paint looking new and makes snow and ice easier to brush off.
- In case of emergency. It’s always good to have an emergency kit readily available. Store your kit in the trunk during cooler months, especially if the season involves road trips for holiday travel. Your emergency kit may include:
- a blanket
- extra boots and gloves
- extra water and food, including hard candies
- an ice scraper
- a small shovel
- a flashlight
- jumper cables
- an extra set of warm clothes
- a tool kit
- a tire gauge
- a spare tire with air in it
- tire-changing equipment
- a first-aid kit
- paper towels
- a bag of abrasive material such as sand, salt or non-clumping kitty litter, which can provide additional traction if a tire gets stuck in snow.
Autozone is generously offering 1 lucky MommyPR reader a $50 gift card to Autozone to help “winterize” your car!
Tell me what’s in your winter road trip travel kit?
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