Sunday, December 02, 2007

How to winterize your car

It is absolutely essential that you winterize your car each year to make sure you keep it in tip top shape to avoid any mechanical failure which maybe deadly. My husband makes sure both of cars have been winterize. He spent his Saturday doing this! Both cars went to the mechanic  for basic oil changes (I had coupons for $10 off each one so a total of $50 there) Here are some tips he said I could share with you :

1. Check antifreeze mixture Not just how much fluid is in the radiator, but the ratio of antifreeze/water content. A frozen radiator can cause your car to over heat and it can also crack your radiator and or damage the water pump. Always keep some extra anti-freeze in your car during the winter months.

2. Change the engine oil. Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual -- more often (every 3,000 miles or so) if your driving is mostly stop-and-go or consists of frequent short trips.

3. Inspect the belts and hoses. Cold temperatures can accelerate the demise of a belt or hose. Before winter starts, have the belts and hoses inspected on your vehicle.

4. Replace the windshield wiper blades Put windshield washer fluid in the windshield washer reservoir (plain water will freeze).

5. The battery Very cold temperatures can reduce a vehicle's battery power by up to 50 percent. If your vehicle battery is older than three years, have it tested at a certified automotive repair facility. Also, make sure the posts and connections are free of corrosion.

6. Tires Make sure the tires are in good condition. If you are not sure what this means, ask a mechanic for an opinion. Examine tires for remaining tread life, uneven wearing, and cupping; check the sidewalls for cuts and nicks. Check tire pressures once a month. Let the tires "cool down" before checking the pressure. Rotate as recommended. . Make sure there is air in the spare tire and that all the proper tire-changing equipment is in the trunk.

7. Ignition System Cold temperatures increase the demands of the ignitions system. Colder air requires more energy to fire the spark plugs. Weak ignition systems usually cause a flooded engine or kill the battery from extended cranking periods. Have your Tune up checked before the winter.

8. Fuel Put a bottle of fuel de-icer in your tank once a month to help keep moisture from freezing in the fuel line. Also a gas tank which is kept filled helps keep moisture from forming.

9. Lights - Inspect all lights and bulbs; replace burned out bulbs; periodically clean road grime from all lenses.

10. Emergency Kit Put together an emergency kit including blanket, extra boots and gloves, ice scraper, small snow shovel, flashlight and kitty litter (for traction when stuck in the snow). Also consider getting an emergency or prepaid cell phone if you don’t have one already. Some high energy snacks as well.

1 comment:

ginabad said...

This is a great list for someone car clueless like me to print out & post on my wall. Thanks!
gina B