The winter months can be brutal, especially on your car. Those of us living in cold climates have to make sure that not only are we ready for winter with warm clothes, hats, and gloves, but that our cars are ready as well. Is your car ready for chilly temps, snow, and ice? Find out with these five important winter car maintenance tips.
Winter Car Maintenance Tips
1. Wash your car regularly
We tend to wash our cars regularly in the summer, but it’s more important to get regular car washes in the winter. Ice, salt, and sand can wreak havoc on your car, from the tires to the paint to the gunk building up underneath. Getting a thorough car wash and a fresh coat of wax before the mercury drops is important for preventing corrosion. Look for a car wash that is part of the WaterSavers® program as recommended by The International Carwash Association. The WaterSavers® program ensures that your car wash adheres to environmentally friendly standards of water quality and usage. There are over 1500 environmentally friendly car washes participating in the WaterSavers® program. Find a participating car wash near you by visiting www.washwithwatersavers.com.
2. Get regular oil changes
To keep your engine lubricated and working properly, regular oil changes are key. One thing that I didn’t know until very recently is that if you live in a cold climate you will want to get thicker, less viscous oil like 5W-30. Check your car’s manual and ask your mechanic which oil is best for your car and your climate.
3. Check your car’s battery
No one wants to get stranded in the best of weather, but getting stranded in the winter is the worst. Cold weather can take a toll on your car’s battery. Make sure your battery is in working order without signs of corrosion. Check the cables, terminals, and fluid to see if everything looks normal. Your mechanic may even give you a complimentary car battery assessment if you want some extra peace of mind.
4. Change your engine coolant
Protect your engine against corrosion and overheating by changing your engine coolant. Have your car mechanic change to a coolant with ethylene glycol which has antifreeze properties. While replacing coolants, have all of your other fluids topped off as well, including window washer solution.
5. Be sure your tires are in good condition
Especially if you live in a climate where you get snow and even worse, ice, it is so important to make sure your tires are in good working order to keep yourself and your passengers safe. All four tires should have an adequate amount of tread so they can grip the road. To see if you may need new tires, try the penny test by holding a penny head down in the center tread. If you see the top of Lincoln’s head, you have less than 2/32-inch tread and it’s time for new tires. Also, make sure that your tires are properly inflated for optimum handling, safety, and fuel efficiency.
Taking the time to properly winterize your car not only ensures the comfort and safety of you and your family but also helps you maintain the value of your car for many winters to come. For more information visit www.washwithwatersavers.com.
Water Savers wants to help you get your car winter ready with a large travel bag and a $30 Visa gift card.
Open to US residents 18+
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of International Carwash Association. The opinions and text are all mine.