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Is Your Vehicle Ready for Winter?

I sure hate to be the bearer of bad news, but winter is coming…dun dun dun! I may not be a big Game of Thrones fan, but I have heard that ominous statement many times throughout social media and seeing as how it is November and we live in South Dakota it seemed appropriate. Since we have established that winter is indeed coming and unless a move to parts where the sun shines bright all year long is in your near future, you may be interested in some great ideas for winterizing your vehicle.  Don’t worry I didn’t just make them up either as I was able to find some great information at that you can find summarized below.

Wash and Wash Again!
Unless you want to start being able to Fred Flinstone your car down the road, make sure to wash your car regularly during the winter season.  The salt they use on the roads can be a car’s worst enemy for staying in great shape…and don’t skimp out, get the undercarriage rinse.

Be Prepared for Emergencies
One thing my dad taught me was to be prepared…I don’t think he was a Boy Scout either. Anyways, that meant having a stocked car in the winter. Some suggestions for your kit would be: flashlight, blanket, kitty litter or sand (according to this can help in case your tires get stuck), ice scraper and brush, small shovel, safe and leak-proof container of coolant and of course the most important thing – snacks and water!

Check your Tread
I urge you to check your tires and make sure the pressure is good and they aren’t worn too low.  This can be very dangerous in wet conditions and unfortunately I know this from personal experience.  Check your tires and stay safe on the roads!

Are you Getting Enough Fluids?
Coolant, oil and windshield wiper fluid should all be checked heading into winter.  If you aren’t sure how to check them yourself, go to a trusted friend or mechanic who can check, and maybe even teach you how, for the next time.

Battery Charged Up
This one kind of seems like a no-brainer, but we will say it just in case.  The cold weather we can get around here is already going to strain a good battery so make sure it and all the cables are in good shape.  Also, don’t forget a good set of jumper cables for your car…just in case.

Don’t Get Frozen Out
Did you know that you can buy glycerine for de-icing just in case your door locks freeze? Check out a local auto parts, hardware or even a discount store and stock up for the winter…but think about where you store it. I don’t know about you, but my first thought was to put it in the glove box. Not so sure that will be very helpful though if your car is frozen shut!  Your garage, kitchen junk drawer and even your desk at work might be smarter places to store it.

Routine Check-ups
Just get them done. Checking all of these items plus belts, hoses and plugs can help keep you from an unexpected break-down in the middle of Snowpacolypse 2018/19!

Keeping your vehicle great condition through the winter won’t just help keep you from becoming a snowman on the side of the road somewhere, it can also help with resale value when the time comes to trade up!