Getting your car inspected and repaired when the cold weather arrives is a great way to prevent automotive difficulties in the dead of winter.
Summer is the season of warm weather, long days and lots of time on the road. One of the most anticipated activities of the warmer months is going on road trips. However, driving in the heat for an extended period of time can take a toll on your vehicle. Getting your car inspected and repaired when autumn arrives is a great way to prevent automotive difficulties when the weather starts to cool down. While preparing for the colder season is likely in order for your home, your vehicle should also be a top priority to ensure that it remains in the best condition possible when the temperature drops. You don’t have to get your ice-scraper out just yet but making sure that a few small steps for a seasonal tune-up are in place could save you time and money.
Here is how you can start preparing your car for autumn and winter right now.
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1. Check Antifreeze Levels
Connected to the radiator and stored in a plastic bottle under the roof of your car, antifreeze, also known as coolant, regulates your engines temperature and keeps it running properly. Your car’s engine produces a lot of heat, and it must be cooled down to avoid engine damage. Antifreeze does this by circulating through engine passages, so if you notice that your coolant has a sludgy and oily surface, it could mean that there is a leak in your engine. The condition and level of your vehicle’s antifreeze during cooler months is vital to the health of your car. Coolant often gets diluted during summertime, making it lose its anti-corrosive properties. If you see that the liquid falls under the bottle’s full line, it’s time to add more.
2. Tire Pressure
Fluctuating temperatures outside can cause the air in your tires to expand and condense which can impact how they operate. Low tire pressure is common in cold weather conditions, as the switch in temperature can cause air contraction in your tires. Rotating your wheels at the beginning of autumn is a great way to prevent tread wear and keep your air pressure even. As well, keeping an eye on your tire pressure indicator will help ensure that you’re protecting yourself and your car against the environmental impacts of lower outside temperatures.
3. Schedule an Inspection
Unless you have an extensive background in car maintenance, it may be a good idea to have certain vehicle elements inspected by a professional. Various parts that should be included in this weather-pending inspection should involve your vehicle’s battery, the brakes, tires and the radiator. Ensuring that your heat, including your window defroster, is working properly when you need it most is also vital to your upcoming cold weather driving needs. A mechanic will be able to oversee and identify everything requiring immediate servicing that is crucial for cold weather driving.
4. Ensure Proper Vehicle Shelter
As the weather gets chiller, you may want to adjust where you park your vehicle for the autumn and winter months. Opting for a winter cover can help protect the exterior of your vehicle when Canada’s harsh snow and rain makes its annual comeback. Giving some thought to your surroundings can help you prepare for all potential weather outcomes while prolonging the longevity of your vehicle. If you have garage, we suggest clearing it out to make room for your car.
5. Prepare Emergency Kit
Having an emergency kit in your vehicle, especially when the cold weather arrives, is a great way to ensure safety on the road. While some items may be necessary all year round, there are certain things that should find a home in your kit by the time the temperature drops. Some of these items might include a blanket, extra hats and gloves, a flashlight with extra batteries, jumper cables and a first aid kit. All of these items will serve an important purpose if you are ever caught stranded on the side of the road in an autumn or winter storm. Additionally, a good shovel can be of great assistance if you’re ever stuck in a particular situation. Bottled water and non-perishable food items are also great to include, especially if you live in a rural part of the country.
Preforming simple car maintenance tasks on your own before the weather gets cold is a good way to save money and ensure your safety on the road. Although the autumn season is only just beginning, it’s never too early to start thinking about how you can get ready for the rough driving conditions of Canada’s winter. If you are in the market for a new vehicle or want to trade in your current vehicle for one with lower rates, Canada Drives can help. Partnered with hundreds of car dealerships all across Canada, we specialize in helping Canadians facing all types of credit situations get approved for fast and affordable auto financing. Visit Canada Drives today to apply online for free or to speak with a representative.