As the end of the year approaches, the change in seasons brings with it a shift in weather patterns. From icy roads to chilly morning starts, the colder months can present challenges for both drivers and their vehicles. It is important to prepare your car for these changes to ensure it functions efficiently and safely. Sadly, the U.S. Department of Transportation reported that over 6 million car accidents happen each year in the United States and some of the accidents happened because of poor vehicle maintenance.
Proper maintenance not only ensures your safety but also extends the lifespan of your vehicle. As the leaves start to fall and temperatures begin to drop, it is important to know what to do to keep your vehicle in tip-top shape.
Check your tires
Tires play a pivotal role in ensuring your vehicle’s safety on the road, especially during colder months. It is important to inspect them for any signs of wear or damage. Ensure they have sufficient tread and are properly inflated. Invest in winter tires if you live in an area that experiences snow or icy conditions. These tires provide better traction and can make a significant difference in handling slippery roads.
Inspect the brakes
Brakes are vital for safety, and their effectiveness can diminish over time. Have a professional check your brake pads and rotors to ensure they do not need replacement. As road conditions can become more hazardous due to wet or icy roads, having a responsive brake system is imperative.
Top up or change the fluids
Low temperatures can affect the performance of vehicle fluids. Make sure to check the level and condition of your coolant, oil, brake fluid and windshield washer fluid. In extremely cold climates, you might need to switch to a thinner engine oil that performs better in low temperatures.
Examine the battery
Cold weather can be tough on your vehicle’s battery. Ensure your battery has a strong charge and that the terminals are clean and free from corrosion. If your battery is several years old, consider having it tested to determine if it needs replacing.
Test the heating system
Before the cold sets in, test your vehicle’s heating system to make sure it works properly. Not only does this provide comfort during chilly drives, but it also ensures your defrosting systems work efficiently, providing clear visibility during frosty mornings.
When you know how to prepare your vehicle, you can have peace of mind knowing that your car is ready to handle the challenges of the colder months. Remember, your vehicle requires regular attention and seasonal changes offer an excellent reminder to give it the care it deserves.