By following regular maintenance schedules for your vehicle, you can help it to stay as efficient as possible when you drive. In the winter, you will need to check the tires more regularly than you do the rest of the year. The cold temperatures can cause air to reduce in the tires. When you check the air pressure, make sure you do it before you drive. Otherwise wait a couple hours after driving. By driving then checking the tires, the tires warm up. This will then result in a false reading when you check them. If a tire goes low often, bring the vehicle in. Sometimes it is not the rubber of the tire, but rather the valve stem or rims. We can inspect the whole tire to see what the issue might be.
You will also want to remember to slow down on the roads. As the temperature and weather change, so will the condition of the roads. Sometimes there might be black ice. This is mostly found on bridges or overpasses. You will not know you are on the ice until it is too late. If the weather is around freezing, and there has been precipitation, always remember to slow down.
Scrape the Windows
The vehicle can also benefit by starting it a few minutes before you drive. You will need to scrape off all the windows and windshield before you drive. This is important because it allows you proper visibility. When doing so, start the vehicle as well. This will help warm up the windshield faster, and make it easier to scrape. Another benefit is that your vehicle will be warm inside after you are done scraping windows. If the defrost is not working for your vehicle, schedule and appointment so you can bring the vehicle in for an inspection.
When you are getting ready for a winter road trip, there are several things to keep in mind. First you will want to make sure your vehicle has been in for regular maintenance. This will help ensure that everything is working properly for it. If you are not sure how often to bring it in, contact us. When you follow the schedule, the parts and components will work as you need them to. If you hear anything out of the norm, make sure you bring the vehicle in so we can inspect it for you.
Oil is Important
Check the oil and fluid levels. You do not want the vehicle to be low on any of them. If the oil is low, then the engine may seize up. This will result in expensive and extensive repairs for it. If the oil is low, often, there could be a leak in the system. You will also want to make sure that the oil is the proper color. If it is too light or too dark, there can be an issue with it.
Remember to check the air pressure in your tires. This can be easy to forget until there is an issue. In the winter the tires can lose air often. Sometimes a bead leak, stem valve leak, or even an issue with the rims can cause problems with air pressure. If you encounter this, make sure you schedule an appointment with us and we can inspect the tires. If there is an issue, we can recommend a course of action to take. The tread wear can also be inspected. Sometimes it may be best to have a tire rotation or tire alignment done for your vehicle. Having good tires will also help your safety on the roads this winter.
The tires of your vehicle should never be ignored, especially in the winter. If you are not sure what to look for, bring the vehicle in. Also, if you notice any issues with them, contact us. Notice anything that might be out of the norm. If the vehicle pulls in one direction or the other, it could be from the tires. If the tires are not balanced, you may notice an unbalanced wobble to the vehicle. Follow regular maintenance for your vehicle as well.
One of the first things to check is the tread wear for the tires. If it is low and worn, then the tire will not have the best grip on the road. You can easily check the tread of the tires by placing a penny upside down in the groove. If you see the top of Lincoln’s head, then the tread is too low. With low tread the tires will slide and not have proper handling of the road. If the tread is wearing unevenly on the tire or from one tire to another, bring it in. Having the tires rotated or aligned can help keep the tread in the best condition.
You should also check the air pressure for all the tires. Driving the tires with air that is too low or too inflated can lead to issues. In the winter, the colder temperatures result in air being lost more often from the tires of the vehicle. When it becomes continuous, there can be a much larger issue. By bringing the vehicle in, we will check the tire, valve stem, and rim. Each tire should be inspected for any issues. Also check the spare tire of the vehicle. If one of the regular tires blows, then you will have to rely on the spare tire to get you to a safe place.
During the winter you will need extra time when you get up in the morning to get ready to leave. Typically there will be frost on the windows of your vehicle. There could also be snow and ice that can occur, depending on what the weather was during the night. You will want to make sure you allow extra time so you can scrape and brush off your vehicle. Doing so can improve your safety and visibility when you are driving. By allowing extra time, you will not feel like you are in a rush and forget to scrape a window of your vehicle.
By brushing off everything that is on your vehicle, including snow and ice, you can see better. This is because if you are driving with loose snow, it can blow up onto the windshield and impair the visibility of the road. There is also a chance that the snow can blow off onto vehicles that are passing you. This can also cause an accident. The driver could unexpectedly loose visibility and cause an accident or go into the ditch. If a chunk of ice slides off your vehicle at another one, it can cause damage. The ice could crack, chip, or break the windshield of a vehicle.
When you get ready to leave, you can help the vehicle to warm up by starting it. Turn it on defrost and it can help warm up the windshield from the inside. This will also help you to have a warm and comfortable interior, as you get ready to drive. If you have rear defrost, turning that on will help warm up the rear windshield. You will want to have the visibility to see behind you as you drive. This can alert you for those who are around you, and might potentially be ready to pass you on the road as well.
One of the most important things you can do is to make sure you are clearing the windshield and other windows before you drive. This will improve the visibility in front of you. Clearing the windows will also help you to be aware and see those around you. If a window has snow or frost build up, you will not be able to see if someone is beside you. This can lead to an accident if you need to switch lanes or turn quickly. If your vehicle has a rear windshield wiper, you will also want to make sure it is loose so it can operate.
The washer fluid should also be checked. This is beneficial if you need to clear any smudge marks or slush off the windshield. It is always recommended to have extra washer fluid in the back of your vehicle or trunk. This way, you can refill the reservoir if you run out at an inconvenient time. When you check the washer fluid, take a few extra minutes to check all the fluids. You can even check the oil to make sure it is in the proper condition, as well as amount. If you do notice a fluid is decreasing or leaking faster than others, contact us. We can inspect the fluids and see what the issue is.
As you get ready to drive, get up a little early so you allow yourself time to scrape the windows. You can start the vehicle and allow the defrost to warm the windshield from the inside. It will also help the interior of your vehicle to be warm as well. While the vehicle warms up, you can scrape each window. By the time you are done, the vehicle will be warmed up. Warming up the vehicle also helps for the oil to warm up as well.