Let’s face it, here in upstate New York, we face some of the toughest winters in the country. Every year around this time, we begin dusting off our snow boots and digging those heavy winter coats out of the closet. As we prepare ourselves for the bitter cold temperatures headed our way, let’s not forget about our cars.
Winter is a tough season for your car. Below-freezing temperatures, salty roads, and heavy ice and snow can wreak havoc if you don’t properly prepare and maintain your vehicle through the winter months.
Here are our tips on how to winterize your car:
Check your oil. The oil that should be used in your engine is dependent on how hot or how cold your engine is running. During the winter months you’ll want to switch over to thinner, less viscous oil. Refer to your owner’s manual or check with your service department to see what is best for your car.
Refresh engine coolant. Your engine coolant not only keeps your engine cool, but also protects your engine against corrosion. Make sure you have a coolant that’s appropriate for winter (contains ethylene glycol), and make sure you have the ideal coolant to water ratio for winter.
Check your battery. Cold weather is rough on car batteries, so before the temperatures dip uncomfortably low, have your battery tested. If your battery is at the end of its life, get it replaced sooner rather than later – you don’t want to be caught in a snow storm with a battery that won’t start.
Get snow tires. Utica receives more snow than almost anywhere else in the United States, so if there’s one thing you want to do before winter, its get snow tires. These tires are specifically engineered to grip to snowy and icy roads, offering more traction and control.
Replace windshield wipers: Make sure you have wipers that cleanly wipe away water, snow and ice. Old wipers can leave behind moisture that can obstruct your view.
Create an emergency safety kit. Make sure you keep a flashlight, car cell phone charger, water, high-energy snacks, blanket, gloves, sand or kitty litter, and small shovel in your car, just in case.
For more tips on how to prepare your car for winter, visit dmv.org.
Ready to make an appointment to get your car all set for the season? Call 866-207-5035, visit our service department online, or stop by Steet Ponte Mazda today!