3 Tips to Help Your Vehicle Survive Really Cold Weather Snaps

When the temperatures drop outside and start to creep into record lows, the last thing you want to deal with is vehicle repairs. Here are a few tips that will help your vehicle survive in really cold weather.

#1 Inspect the Battery

The first thing that you should do is make sure that your battery is in good shape. When it starts to get really cold outside, it makes it harder for the battery on your vehicle to function. As the temperatures drop, your battery does not have the same cranking power as it does when it is warm outside.

If you have a conventional battery, you are going to want to check the fluid levels by removing the plastic caps on the top of your battery before it gets really cold outside. If you notice that the fluid levels are low, you can generally top them off with some distilled water. Make sure that you purchase distilled water for this job; do not use water from your faucet, which can contain minerals and elements that could be harmful to your battery.

If you have a maintenance-free battery, there should be a window that is located on the top of the battery that shows you how charged the batter is. If the battery charge signal is weak, you are going to want to look into replacing it. Maintenance-free batteries are designed to work effectively for about four years.

#2 Put on Winter Tires

Second, you should really consider investing in winter tires. Winter tires are especially designed to move snow and water out of the path of your tire and are designed to increase traction with the ground. The rubber on winter tires is designed to be able to grip well with the ground when it is cold and freezing outside. The tread on the tires is thicker and is designed to ensure that you always maintain a good gripe on the road, no matter what type of road conditions you encounter. Be aware thought that winter tires tend to generate a little more road noise than the tires you have on your vehicle right now; the extra noise is in part because of the increased contact with the road and the increased traction that your winter tires will provide you with.

#3 Check Your Oil

In the winter, the oil in your vehicle can get colder and thicker. When the oil gets thicker, it can make it more difficult for your engine to start up and run. Make sure that you are using a multi-viscosity oil that is marked with a W, for example, 5W-30 or 10W-30. When you get your oil changed, be sure to change out the oil filter as well. This will help ensure that your oil is able to flow steadily, even in cold temperatures. 

For more tips on getting your vehicle ready for winter, talk to an auto repair person at Jensen Tire & Auto.