Car Care Tips

Tips to keep your car on the road.

Safety November 20, 2015

How to Get Your Car Ready for Winter

Make sure you and your car are winter ready by checking the following parts on your car:

Tire Tread: Uneven or excessive tread wearing can cause major problems during the winter months, as roads get slicker and your tires require more grip to brake and accelerate.

To test your tire tread, do the Penny Test: Take a Lincoln penny, hold it between your thumb and forefinger so that Lincoln’s head is showing. Place the top of Lincoln’s head into one of the grooves of the tire’s tread. If any part of Lincoln’s head is obscured by the tread, you have a safe amount of tread. If you can see above Lincoln’s head, then you need a new tire.

The Battery: Colder weather will cause your engine to need more current from the battery to start. So, it is important that the battery is functioning properly.

Here’s an easy at home battery test. Turn on your headlights before you start your engine. Then turn your engine on. If the lights get brighter your battery may be dying. If you find this process unreliable or unclear, bring your car into Virginia Tire & Auto and we will check the battery voltage for free.

Windshield wipers and fluid: Be sure your washer fluid has an anti-freeze solution. Also, if you haven’t replaced your windshield wipers within 6 to 12 months, be sure to do so before the first ice or snowstorm arrives.

Defroster and Heater: Start your car on a cool fall morning and turn the heat on. Be sure the heat functions properly and stays consistent. Test your defroster and check for air leaks around the doors or windows that could cause extra moisture to get into the car.

Inspecting these parts of your car will help you be prepared and safe during the winter months!

Virginia Tire & Auto also recommends putting an ice scraper in your car BEFORE the cold weather arrives, your hands will thank you!

It’s better to be safe than sorry. We recommend keeping a car emergency kit in your vehicle during the winter months. You can learn about what to pack in the kit by clicking HERE.

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