10 Ways to Prepare Your Car for Winter Weather

Winter is slow to start this year, with hardly any snow on the ground and temperatures still in the 40s! But before we know it, that snow and cold air will hit us hard and you’ll want your car to be prepared for it. The following 10 steps provided by CarCare.org should be taken to ensure you and your car are ready for winter.

  1. Have the battery and charging system checked for optimum performance. Cold weather is hard on batteries.
  2. Clean, flush, and put new antifreeze in the cooling system. As a general rule of thumb, this should be done every two years.
  3. Make sure heaters, defrosters, and wipers work properly. Consider winter wiper blades and use cold weather washer fluid. As a general rule, wiper blades should be replaced every six months.
  4. Check the tire tread depth and tire pressure. During winter, tire pressure should be checked weekly.
  5. Consider investing in snow tires for extra traction and avoiding potential sliding.
  6. Be diligent about changing the oil and filter at recommended intervals. Dirty oil can spell trouble in winter. Consider changing to “winter weight” oil if you live in a cold climate. Have your technician check the fuel, air, and transmission filters at the same time.
  7. If you’re due for a tune-up, have it done before winter sets in. Winter magnifies existing problems such as pings, hard starts, sluggish performance or rough idling.
  8. Have the brakes checked. The braking system is the vehicle’s most important safety item.
  9. Have the exhaust system checked for carbon monoxide leaks, which can be especially dangerous during cold weather driving when windows are closed.
  10. Check to see that exterior and interior lights work and headlights are properly aimed.



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