Winter weather is hard on a car – get your car ready now so you don’t have problems when freezing weather hits.
It might be hard to believe right now while Wichita is seeing mild weather. But, forecasters say a cold front is on its way tonight and we could see a 25-30 degree drop in temperatures as it sets in. Frost is even possible come Friday morning.
Mother Nature is certainly warning that the cold weeks and months of winter are on the way and that now is the time to get ready. Getting your car ready for the cold weather should be at the top of your “to-do” list, according to the nonprofit Car Care Council. Wnter, the council says, can be hard on a car and prepping now will help you avoid a breakdown later.
The council recommends a thorough vehicle inspection by a trusted professional service technician as winter magnifies existing problems such as pings, hard starts, sluggish performance or rough idling. Drivers should keep their vehicle’s gas tank at least half-full to decrease the chances of moisture forming in the gas lines and possibly freezing and stock an emergency kit with an ice scraper and snowbrush, jumper cables, flashlight, blanket, extra clothes, bottled water, dry food snacks and needed medication.
At the very least, the council recommends checking these six systems:
- Battery – “Cold weather is hard on batteries, so it’s wise to check the battery and charging system for optimum performance. Because batteries don’t always give warning signs before they fail, it is advisable to replace batteries that are more than three years old.”
- Antifreeze – “Antifreeze (coolant) should be flushed and refilled at least every two years in most vehicles. As a reminder, do not add 100 percent antifreeze as full-strength antifreeze actually has a lower freeze point than when mixed with water.”
- Brakes – “Have the brake system checked. Brakes are critical to vehicle safety and particularly important when driving on icy or snow-covered roads.”
- Tires – “Check the tire tread depth and tire pressure, including the spare. If snow and ice are a problem … consider special tires designed to grip slick roads. During winter, tire pressure should be checked weekly as tires lose pressure when temperatures drop.”
- Oil – “Be diligent about changing the oil at recommended intervals and check the fuel, air and transmission filters at the same time. Consider changing to low-viscosity oil in winter, as it will flow more easily between moving parts when cold. In sub-zero driving temperatures, drop oil weight from 10-W30 to 5-W30 as thickened oil can make it hard to start the car.”
- Lights and Wipers – “Make sure all exterior and interior lights are working so you can see and be seen. Check the fluid level in the windshield washer reservoir and replace wiper blades that are torn, cracked or don’t properly clean your windshield.”
The best person to perform these checks is a trusted auto care technician. If you don’t have a regular auto care pro, then get to know the certified auto care specialists at Tracy’s Automotive.
While you’re at Tracy’s Automotive, check into our specials, like free road hazard protection on a set of four tires.
While you’re at Tracy’s Automotive, be sure to sign up for our giveaway of a $150 gift card and a Weber Spirit II E-210 gas grill. The Weber Spirit II E-210 is a two-burner grill that’s built to fit small spaces, and packed with features such as the powerful GS4 grilling system, iGrill capability, and convenient side tables for placing serving trays.
Once you fall in love with the Spirit II E-210, fill out a form. We’ll be giving away one $150 gift card and one grill at each of our locations in November. No purchase necessary but you must enter at one of our service centers. Stay tuned for more details or ask one of the auto pros when you visit one of our service centers.
Tracy’s Automotive is here to help you. If you don’t have time or feel you can take your car to the shop, Tracy’s Automotive will pick it up at your home or work. Then, after your car is serviced or repaired, Tracy’s Automotive will bring it back to you thoroughly cleaned.
Tracy’s passion for a better tire buying, auto care and auto repair experience drove us to develop the model of Tracy’s Automotive Tire Pros. Tracy’s has turned hard work and inspiration into a booming tire and auto repair provider. Now Tracy’s has three locations and serves customers all over Wichita and Goddard. Tracy’s is thrilled to be a part of your family’s trusted brands for all auto repair and tire needs.
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