There are many components in our vehicles that should be taken into consideration as the weather changes, especially here in Idaho as those changes are often extreme and sometimes sudden. The most important aspect of preparing your vehicle for winter is an inspection of these components by professional certified mechanics. Of these components to be checked are the vehicle’s battery and charging system. This check is to make sure your battery is in the good condition required to start a car in cold or freezing weather and that the vehicle’s charging system is adequate in function. The battery’s terminals and cables should be inspected, tightened, and cleaned of corrosion as well.
While under the hood, drive belts and hoses are to be checked ensuring their proper function and that these components are in good working condition. Fluids such as engine oil, steering, brake, and transmission fluid levels should be checked, changed, and topped-off according to your vehicle’s need and industry standards. Not to leave out windshield washing fluid, which tends to be used more heavily throughout the winter months.
Engine coolant levels and the proper mixture of a 50/50 antifreeze to water ratio are to be checked, topped-off, and maintained as well. The vehicle’s heater and heating system should be inspected to good working order, special attention being paid to the windshield defrost function. Windshield wiper blades are also to be inspected and replaced with better winter functioning blades if necessary.
As with any visit your car or truck makes to an automotive shop, your vehicle’s lighting system should be checked for working order and bulbs replaced as necessary. This includes headlights, tail lights, brake lights, reverse lamps, license plate illumination light, and all 4 turn signals. Other components to be checked for their reliability through winter months are your vehicle’s tires and braking system. Tires should be checked to ensure they are inflated to their manufacturer’s recommendation and that the tread and walls are in good condition for winter driving. It’s worth noting that in cold weather, tire pressure can drop typically 1 psi for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit.
Your vehicle’s brakes and braking system should be inspected to ensure all its components are in good working order. Not only for your peace of mind as a responsible vehicle owner, but to prolong the life of your vehicle and keep you safe from the elements, you should be in the habit of winterizing your car or truck every fall (before the winter season).
If you’re not already in the habit of winterizing your vehicle, let us at C&S Auto Repair be the first to help you instill the good habit of making sure your vehicle is winter ready.[/fusion_text]