Now that winter temperatures have officially taken hold, here are a couple tips to help keep you safe until Spring:
1) Your antifreeze reservoir should be full.
Your radiator uses water to keep your engine cool while its running. Antifreeze is a chemical added to your radiator that drastically lowers the freezing point of the water held within. Check your radiator’s antifreeze reservoir to see if you have enough to last you through winter. Warning: Don’t ever add coolant to a hot engine, wait until your engine has cooled before adding more antifreeze.
2) Keep your tire pressure in the proper range.
Driving with low tire pressure can not only cause accelerated wear and tear, it can also be the reason for a blowout. Driving with low tire pressure causes increased pressure on the sidewalls (side of the tire). You can buy a tire pressure gauge at your local auto parts store, or even Walmart, for about two dollars. Follow the instructions to check your tire pressure, and if it’s low, you can fill it up with an air compressor. Many gas stations have air compressors for free if you don’t own one.
3) Check the tread on your tires.
Every year, tire aging contributes to many accidents that result in injuries or even death. You can purchase a tire tread gauge (next to the air pressure gauge), or the most common test is known as the penny test. Check out how to do the penny test here.
4) Maintain a healthy battery.
Don’t get stuck jumpstarting your car in below freezing temps. You shouldn’t wait until your battery completely dies to replace it and you can have your battery tested for free at many auto parts stores.
5) Keep your wiper blades working properly
Getting stuck in the rain or snow without properly working wiper blades could be extremely dangerous. If you aren’t sure how to replace them yourself, many of the stores you purchase them from will replace them for you. Test your wipe blades before it gets bad out to make sure you’re prepared.