It’s finally here people; Winter that is. And from the looks of it, it seems it’s come to stay…at least until winter season is over. As you get ready to go home, travel for the holidays or work more hours at your internship or work sites, the following winter tips may prove useful so keep them in mind:
Do you have good winter tires? Make sure you have good tires, preferably tires designed for use on snow and ice also known as winter tires. One of the benefits of having good winter tires is that the tread patterns on these tires provide more traction on ice and snow. Another benefit is that they are made of softer rubber compounds to enhance grip. One easy way of checking if you have winter tires is by looking at the tread design. Winter tires have a tread design with larger gaps which is useful for increasing traction on snow and ice compared to the smaller gaps on summer tires.
Having issues with your car not starting? Cold temperatures can cause the chemical reaction in your car battery to significantly slow down so a weak battery could be the reason your car won’t start. It’s not fun to just sit and wait for a tow truck to come to your rescue or even worse, push your car below freezing temperatures because your car won’t start. So, make sure that you have a good battery installed in your vehicle to prevent issues with your car starting. Be sure to visit your mechanic to do a quick car check including doing an oil change (if one is due). Try to avoid having car issues in the winter as much as possible.
Get winter supplies for your vehicle: Sometimes, even with good tires and a good battery, you might find yourself stuck somewhere in the snow so it’s always best practice to have some supplies stashed in your vehicle to keep you warm and safe in the event where you get stuck. Having a good standalone jump starter is usually the first item on my list. Other items on the list are warm blanket, sturdy ice scraper/snow brush, shovel, traction pads, rock salt, sand or kitty litter and first aid kit. If you’d be driving long distances, be sure to have other additional items such as non- perishable food or snacks, emergency flares or reflectors, flashlight, cell phone charger. Also, be sure to always have at least a half-full tank of gas.
Make sure your tires are properly inflated for winter conditions: Every 10° change in temperatures could lead to a gain or loss of 1 psi. With the frequent changes in temperatures in the winter, it is important to check your tire pressures frequently. This is important because tire pressure will significantly influence the responsiveness of your tires on snow.
Keep washer fluid full and Install winter wipers: A lot of people don’t check this but it’s important to have enough windshield wiper fluid. Also, check your wiper blades. If they’re worn out, be sure to install winter wipers. These wipers have rubber blades that keeps ice from collecting on the blades.