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Lifestyle, Safety, Technology

Winter is Coming: Prepare Your Car for the Cold

pexels-photo-12875While cooler temperatures mean Thanksgiving and Christmas are right around the corner, it also means the roads will soon be getting more dangerous. With winter comes ice and snow, both of which raise a number of risks while driving. However, there are things you can do to winterize your vehicle. It’s an important part of reducing your risk of driving-related injuries in the coming months.First, you can consider installing winter windshield wipers. Heavier than regular windshield wipers, these are designed to keep ice from collecting on the blades. It can be a hassle in the morning trying to detach your frozen wipers without damaging them – winter wipers can help. They also make it easier to keep your windshield clear in icy conditions. Just remember to change them back once the weather warms up. Along this line, it’s very important to keep your windshield washer fluid full. In snowy weather, it’s especially important to make sure you can see the road. There’s also ice-resistant varieties available, to help keep your windshield clear. It’s a good idea to keep an extra bottle or two in your trunk, just in case it runs out while you’re driving.Something else that’s good to have in your trunk is a winter safety kit. Accidents happen, and they happen more frequently in icy weather. Having essential first aid and survival supplies on hand can be a huge help if something does happen. Some examples of what to pack include: a pack of matches; first aid kit; flares; flashlight and batteries; ice scraper; non-perishable food and beverage items; spare warm clothing; jumper cables; and a bag of sand and shovel. Making sure your tire pressure is normal is also important. For every 10-degree change in temperature, you could lose up to 1 PSI (Pound per Square Inch, the unit used to measure tire pressure). Check your tires regularly in the winter, adding some more air when necessary. The recommended tire pressure for your vehicle can be found in the owner’s manual, or is sometimes listed on a small placard on the inside edge of the car’s front doors. You also might have heard to keep your gas tank at least half full in the winter. There are actually a couple reasons for this. First, a fuller tank prevents gas-line freezes, but more importantly if you end up stranded waiting for help, having gas to keep the engine (and your heat) running is very important.Finally, before winter gets here, it’s worth it to have your car inspected. Making sure all your fluids are full and your heating/defrosting systems are working can make your snowy driving that much safer!

Category Lifestyle, Safety, Technology
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