Winterize Your Car: How to Prepare Your Vehicle for Freezing Temperatures

Car driving on road in winter

Just like humans bundle up during the winter months, vehicles also need to be taken care of in cold temperatures to ensure they perform appropriately. In this article, we will show you how to winterize your car for safe driving.

But before we jump into the details, it is important to know when to get your vehicle ready for the cold weather. A good rule of thumb to follow is to winterize your car a few weeks before temperatures actually drop.

And, depending on the area, this normally happens around Thanksgiving time. This could be a good time for you to follow these steps and ensure your vehicle is safe to drive in the winter.

Check tire pressure

When temperatures fluctuate, it's common for a vehicle’s tire pressure to drop. That’s why it’s important to check tire pressure once a month, especially during the winter months. If tires are under-inflated, your car will not perform at its best, and, among other things, it could need more gas than needed when driving.

If you live in an area with temperatures below 40 degrees in the winter, be sure to buy tires that are good for all seasons. And if it’s common to go below zero degrees, then rely on special winter tires to ensure a safer and more efficient driving.

Repair any cracks in the windshield

Another thing to consider when preparing your vehicle for freezing temperatures is to check if there are any windshield cracks. If so, it’s crucial that you repair these before it starts getting cold.

A small crack could turn into a big one when temperatures start fluctuating between hot and cold. Take advantage of it in the warm weather while the crack in the windshield is small, and get a kit at an auto parts shop to easily fix it yourself. Be sure to check windshield wipers as well, and if they need to be replaced, you can always refer to a previous article we shared with tips to remove windshield wipers easily.

Test your battery

Batteries suffer during the winter months, and they should also be a part of your routine to winterize your car. Have a mechanic test your battery on your next oil change. Normally, batteries have a 3-year life span though sometimes you may get away with up to 5 years depending on your driving style and how much you drive.

Inspect your brakes and brake lights

While this next tip applies to all seasons, it’s particularly important to have fully functioning brakes and brake lights during the winter months. Not only will this help you with your own safety while driving but also with other drivers’ visibility.

Carry a first aid/survival preparedness kit

Lastly, and regardless of the temperature outside, be sure to always carry a first aid/survival preparedness kit in your vehicle.

Some of the items you should include are: blankets, a flashlight, warm clothes, ice scraper, and reflective vests. For more information on how to create your own survival preparedness kit, we recommend reading the linked article we shared in the past.

While it’s not too difficult to winterize your car, it does take some time and commitment. That’s why at Infinity we want to make sure getting auto insurance is as easy as 1-2-3. Call one of our friendly agents at 1-800-INFINITY or visit our website to get a free quote within minutes.

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