Olympia Auto Repair

Important Winter Car Care Tips

Winter, Christmas, white snow covering everything – sounds lovely doesn’t it? It really is! However, with the cold weather that winter brings, there are certain car care things you need to know.

Let us look at some car maintenance tips:

Coolant

Do you know what the role of the coolant is during the winter? Its purpose is to make sure that the water in your car’s cooling system doesn’t freeze over the cold nights. As you can guess, that is of the highest importance, so check the amount and condition of your coolant. The coolant should be a mixture of antifreeze and water in an about 50/50 ratio but that may vary based on the type of antifreeze you have chosen.

Battery

Put in simple words – your car’s battery performance may suffer in the winter due to the low temperatures. This is due to the fact that the vehicle requires a stronger current from the battery in order to start the engine. You can check the condition of the battery by running a battery load test that should determine if the battery can go through the winter without creating issues such as not being able to start the car. While you’re at it, inspect the cables and terminals of the battery for any cracks.

Tires

If you have decided to tackle the winter with all-weather tires, check the wear and tear of the tread. The tread needs to be at least 5/32”, if it is less than 2/32” it won’t do for the winter. Note that this is valid specifically for all-season tires.

The best choice would be to get winter tires because they are specifically designed to perform well in not only colder weather, but also snow and ice. The rubber they are made of is softer and it remains more flexible in low temperatures.

Regardless of the tires you decide to use, keep an eye on the tire pressure. The tires need to be properly inflated for the winter conditions. The cold causes the air pressure to drop at a rate around 1 PSI per 10 degrees. The usual tire pressure that is recommended is 20-25 PSI; however, this may vary (from one manufacturer to another) so check the owner’s manual in order to be certain. Don’t forget you need to check the spare tire as well.

Windshield Wipers

You need good visibility when driving! Windshield wiper blades have a lifespan of approximately six months to a year maximum, and during the winter they need to be able to handle a lot more than during the summer for instance. So make sure that they are still up to the task, or else replace them. Maybe even get heavy-duty wiper blades - they are designed specifically for winter.

Top up the wiper fluid and make sure it is freeze-resistant. It is vital because it needs to be able to keep the windshield free of snow, ice, and mud if needed.

Hopefully, those tips for winter car care have been helpful to you!

If you notice something wrong with your car, or need help with the items above, don’t hesitate and visit us here at Olympic Transmissions & Auto Care! We will take great care of your vehicle!

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