If you live in an area prone to extremely harsh weather, you’ll need to know how to properly prepare your vehicle for the coming weather. We at Callahan Automotive, have created this list for you for the top 7 steps you can take to prepare your car for winter.

  1. Give your battery a little love. 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. Because we have all either experienced this ourselves or know someone who was sitting in the cold because their battery died. Give your battery a little love to help avoid such a scenario altogether?
  2. Get the right kind of oil change. Are you approaching the time for a full service for your vehicle? If so, we recommend that you do not procrastinate! These full services should include an oil change, and the oil used should have the right viscosity, or thickness, for your vehicle at this time of year. If it is not time for a full service, it is always good to get an oil change before the colder temperatures set in. Oil tends to thicken as it gets colder, and if it’s too thick it won’t do the best job of keeping your engine lubricated.
  3. Replace Your Windshield Wipers. If you can’t remember when the last time was you replaced your windshield wipers – that is a good indication that it is time to do so now! They usually work effectively for about one year, so be sure to invest in some new ones if you’re due. Also check to see that your heater and defroster are working properly so you can keep the windshield nice and clear.
  4. Examine your belts and hoses. When you have that full service done or a regular oil change on your vehicle, make sure the belts and hoses get checked for wear and tear — even if you’re driving a modern car. Cold weather can do a number on belts and hoses, so always best to just have them checked while the mechanic is already under your car.
  5. Check your tire pressure. This is a big one. Your tires must be properly inflated to ensure you’ll have the best possible traction as you drive along — and traction is often severely jeopardized in wet, snowy or icy conditions. And did you know that your tire pressure can drop with the colder weather? Again, your trusty owner’s manual will tell you what your target tire pressure should be or most vehicles will have a sticker on the inside of the driver door with the recommended PSI for your tires.

6. Check Your Cooling System Regularly

Flush and refill your car’s cooling system, as recommended. Moreover, check the level as well as the concentration and condition of the coolant. The usual recommendation is a 50/50 mixture of water and antifreeze. Also, be sure the engine has been completely cooled before removing the radiator cap.

7. Be Sure Brake Lights and Headlights Are Working

Your brake lights and headlights should always be in good working order, but it’s especially critical that they’re functioning well when driving through heavy snow or dense winter fog. What’s more, you need to be sure other drivers on the road can see you.

If you have any more questions about how to best prepare your vehicle for winter, give us a call at Callahan Automotive today!