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Preparing Your Car for the Winter

Blog #1 Preparing your Car for the Winter

Whether you love it or hate it, winter is here. Winter driving is full of challenges and it is important to adjust your driving to the the conditions. The key is preparing your car for the winter.

The first step to winter driving is preparing your vehicle for the cold temperatures and snowy weather. Here are some tips and tricks to get your vehicle cold weather ready.
First off test your battery. As the temperature drops so does the battery power. To test your battery you can use a computerized battery tester. It is also a good idea to test your alternator and starter. Don’t wait until your battery dies leaving you possibly stranded in the cold, be prepared.

Secondly, get those winter tires on. Make sure they have enough tread left on them, you will want to have at least 4/32 inches. Most winter tires will last you 5 or 6 seasons depending on your driving and tire maintenance practices. Your insurance company may also give you a discount on your car insurance if you are using winter tires, give them a call to find out.
Once the tires are on, check your tire pressure. The pressure in your tires also drops as the temperature does. To check your tire pressure, you will need a tire pressure gauge. Your vehicle manual will tell you what pressure your vehicle’s tires should be, usually between 32-35 psi.

Once you have your tires ready, it’s time to look at your wiper blades. Make sure they are in good working order and able to clear your windshield off effectively. Keep in mind that wiper blades should be replaced every 6 months so you are probably due for a new set. You should purchase a set of winter wipers, which do a better job clearing off snow and increase your visibility. Make sure to add a wiper fluid that is rated for -30 degrees.

Next, make sure your vehicle is up to date on it’s oil changes. Your car needs oil to lubricate the engine and keep it running smoothly. Replacing it regularly is essential in car maintenance, but it is even more important in the winter as the cold temperatures can cause the oil to thicken and prevent it from circulating correctly. Book your car in for an oil change to keep it running smoothly. 

A final step in preparing for winter driving is to make sure your car is equipped with a fully stocked emergency preparedness kit. This kit should contain food that won’t go bad (such as energy bars), water in plastic bottles, a blanket, extra clothes, a first aid kit with a seatbelt cutter, a small shovel, scraper & snowbrush, a candle in a deep can and matches, wind-up flashlight, whistle, and roadmaps. Inside your trunk you should also keep sand or salt, extra windshield washer fluid, a tow rope, jumper cables, a fire extinguisher, and warning lights or road flares.

Being prepared is key to making the next few months of driving safer.
We want you to come see us to buy a new vehicle because you WANT to, not because you need to after being in an accident.

Tom Smith Chevrolet is a Chevrolet, Buick & GMC dealership located in Midland ONT. We also have a wide selection of certified pre-owned vehicles. Just a 30 minute drive from Barrie, ONT, or 90 minutes from the  GTA we know you will get the best service from our small town dealership you can’t get from bigger cities.