When the temperature drops this time of year it means one thing, winter is just around the corner. Being prepared for Old Man Winter is crucial so here are some tips to keep you and your family safe on the road this winter.
Get your vehicle winter-ready with these winterizing suggestions before the temperature drops:
- Place snow tires on your vehicle – Snow tires will increase traction and reduce your chances of slipping on slick surfaces.
- Keep a bag of salt or kitty litter handy – it can be the difference between getting out of a drift and getting stuck even further.
- Have a brush ready to go – under the Highway Traffic Act, it is an offense to drive your vehicle with your windshield, your side or your rear windows covered completely, or even partially, by snow and ice, like this lazy driver.
- Check your tire pressure – Cold temperatures cause tire air pressure to drop.
- Check your car battery – Extreme temperatures can cause your vehicle’s battery to operate at less than 50 percent. If your battery is over three years old, have it tested.
- Check the antifreeze mixture – The ideal mixture of antifreeze and water in your radiator is 50:50.
- If you’ve got one, check your four-wheel-drive system for malfunctions – Check that your system engages and disengages properly and does not make any unusual noises when you start it.
- Change the oil in your engine and check the viscosity grade – To reduce the risk of problems with your engine oil, place thinner oil in your engine before the cold weather season.
- Place a roadside emergency supply kit in your car
Getting your vehicle winter-ready is essential and every year we see the Annual Meeting of the Summer Tires Club, with spinouts, fender benders and crashes coming with the first snowfall. We can’t recommend having a good set of winter tires enough. They are absolutely critical to road safety in hazardous conditions. In fact, when compared to all-season tires, vehicles equipped with winter tires have been shown to decrease the stopping distance of a car by 30 to 40 percent.