Savvy car owners do this before winter

(NC) Winter will be here before you know it, so if you plan on driving in the cold weather, here are some basic things you need to do to get your car ready for the frigid months ahead.

  1. Check the battery. Do you know how old your battery is? If it’s more than three years old, it may be losing its ability to hold a charge and you don’t want to find that out when the first cold snap hits and you can’t start your car. Get it checked by your mechanic and be sure to have booster cables in your trunk and know how to use them.
  2. Replace your wipers. During the sunny days of summer, we don’t use our windshield wipers much, but when the snow and sleet are flying, shabby wipers won’t cut it. Not being able to see properly is a safety hazard, so replace your old wipers with heavy-duty ones designed to handle the ice of winter.
  3. Inspect your snow tires. No matter what anyone tells you, all-season tires are not as good as winter ones during the coldest months of the year. If you’re not currently using them, upgrade to winter tires and if you are, check them well before your installation appointment so that you have more time to shop for sales if they need replacing.
  4. Create an emergency kit. Emergencies don’t only happen to other people. Create an emergency kit for your car in case you get stranded by bad weather. Pack blankets, energy bars, a hat, gloves and a flashlight to keep you safe until help arrives. Make sure to have something that lets you charge your mobile phone so you can call for assistance.
  5. Rustproofing. Researchers at the University of Windsor studied hundreds of cars and found that untreated vehicles had 6.8 times more visible corrosion on body panels than cars that benefitted from Krown Rust Control treatments. Underbody parts had 3.6 times more corrosion than treated cars. Winter is the time your car is most likely to be bombarded with salt and road-de-icing chemicals which can greatly accelerate corrosion.  Protecting your vehicle against rust will help your vehicle to last longer, look better and will even make it safer to drive by protecting important components from rusting.

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