3 Things For a Winter Ready Car
a. Are your tires in good shape and appropriate for the road conditions you might encounter? “If you’re running a good all-season tire, most likely they will handle most of the conditions,” says Casebeer, making snow tires or chains an optional investment.
b. Some high-performance cars may come with summertime-only tires, making it necessary to change them out for best results.
c. Know Your Stuff BONUS: Tire chains provide maximum traction when driving through snow and ice, however not all states permit them! Go here for a quick summary of state laws and regulations, and keep in mind that city regulations may also apply.
a. Winter driving is messy – check that both the window washer fluid and the blades can handle what is thrown at them—literally. Opt for high-quality “winter” fluid with de-icer.
b. While special winter blades can be installed, Casebeer says many modern cars use a single-piece blade that will work fine in winter weather. (If you have the older style metal frame blades, ask about a blade update.)
a. If your car battery is more than two or three years old, have it checked to make sure it can handle below-freezing temperatures. Why? Low temps slow down the chemical reaction that makes the battery function. Many dealerships, auto parts stores and mechanics offer free battery testing.
b.** If your battery is already in sub-par condition, cold weather might just be the final straw that makes it fail completely.
Bottom line? There are a lot of areas that need inspecting to ensure the vehicle is ready for whatever Old Man Winter throws at it. Take your vehicle to a reputable dealer or car mechanic to make sure that it is winter weather-ready.