Looking after your car in the winter
Driving your car in winter isn’t fun at the best of times but what happens when your vehicle simply isn’t ready for the sudden drop in temperature? Icy roads and unpredictable weather can add up to an unsafe experience and that is the last thing we want, especially when driving our family around from A to B. Thankfully there are some proven tips that will ensure your car is ready for winter and all that this chilly season has in store.
Firstly, remember that the daylight hours are going to be seriously compromised during the winter months. This means that your lights will need to be working effectively for a safer driving experience. For those of us with a daily commute, this usually equates to driving to and from work in the dark. So, get your lights working as well as possible and remember to buy plenty of spare bulbs in advance. Always clean the exterior covers and if the lighting unit isn’t working correctly, get it repaired before the winter weather arrives.
Once the cold weather hits us, it is likely that your car battery will need to be working a lot harder. Just think about the heater and lights that need to be on most of the time and you will start to see the bigger picture. Starting your car in freezing weather also takes it toll on the poor battery and will seriously drain the power from a unit that isn’t up to the task. Batteries aren’t too expensive so if yours looks like it has seen better days, order and fit a replacement sooner rather than later.
By fluids we mean coolant and washer fluids that help your car to perform correctly. It is likely that your car will be dealing with freezing temperatures and without the correct engine coolant, you could soon be in big trouble. Check for any leaks and always ensure that the coolant is mixed in a 50/50 formula to offer the best protection. Your screen fluid will also need to be topped up as the winter months mean that a lot more dirt and grime will be splashed up onto the windscreen area.
Tyres need to be in decent condition especially if you are faced with icy road surfaces. Even if you have a four-wheel drive vehicle, those tyres need to be able to grip the road no matter what the conditions. Your Ford Focus will soon be sliding all over the road if the rubber isn’t up to the challenge. Winter tyres are specially designed to deal with low temperatures and bad road conditions so invest in these before the unthinkable happens.
Speak to your friendly staff at Kijiji if you need advice on a survival kit for winter driving. These typically include blankets, flashlights and first-aid kits to help you deal with any emergency situations. Carrying a shovel and a cell phone charger cable will also enable you to deal with unexpected issues.
By following these proven winter driving tips, you will be ready for the cold season and all that we associate with freezing driving conditions.