Is Your Vehicle Ready for the Winter?
DON'T PUT WINTERIZATION PLANS FOR YOUR CAR ON ICE!
Winterization, in short, is preparing your car for the winter months. Cold temperatures are hard on many of your vehicle’s components, and snowy and icy conditions present their own unique challenges that need to be addressed. With a little preparation, though, you can keep your car safe and on the road.
With the days getting shorter and nights getting cooler, fall is clearly just around the corner. Though many of us would rather not think about the possible snow and bitter temperatures that follow in the months to come, now is the time to get ready for it. With experts predicting a hard winter for most of the United States, including Oregon, it’s a good idea to get your car ready now. Winterizing your car is crucial and helps to ensure that it will start on even the coldest mornings and get you where you need to go.
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10 Tips for Winterizing your Car or Truck
As the temperatures begin to fall, there's no better time to perform a winter maintenance check on your vehicles and outdoor engines. Here are 10 tips to help you make sure that your vehicle is ready for even the worst winter weather.
Keep your gas tank at least half full. Water vapor can collect in the bottom of your tank and when drawn into your engine’s fuel line, it can freeze in the winter and prevent your engine from starting.
As the temperature drops, it's important to make sure you are using the right viscosity of motor oil. It's best to check with us for the recommended viscosity for freezing temperatures.
Just as heat and everyday driving can cause wear and tear on your vehicle's belts, so can cold weather. A worn serpentine or v-belt could spell disaster for you and your vehicle, especially when driving in remote regions. Make a belt inspection part of your regular routine and check for signs of fraying or cracking. Have worn belts changed now to help avoid a breakdown during the worst of winter.
The best time to check and top off your vehicle's fluids is before harsh winter weather hits. Check and top off engine coolants, power steering, brake, windshield washer and battery fluids.
5. Spark plugs
If your engine gets off to a rough, jittery start, misfires or simply doesn't want to start, there's a good chance it may be time to have us do a performance diagnostic on your vehicle.
Summer heat takes its toll on batteries. However, in the winter cold, when you need the extra cranking power, your battery may not be up to the task. Consider replacing it if it is more than 3 years old and keep the contacts free of corrosion with a battery post and terminal cleaner service.
Inspect wiper blades for fraying or cracking and consider using heavy-duty winter blades for tough ice buildup.
If your vehicles operate in a cold region with snow and ice, all weather tires may not offer the best performance. Consider outfitting your vehicle with winter tires instead. They offer better traction in icy conditions and even cold, dry roads.
In the darker winter months, it’s important to be seen by other drivers. We will make sure all lights are working.
10. Brake Pads and Shoes
With slippery winter road conditions, making sure that your brakes are in working order is a top priority. If your brakes make a high-pitched squealing sound when engaged, it's time change them out for a new pair.