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Preparation is Key to Winter Maintenance

January 6, 2016

Winter driving

 

Proper winter maintenance is all about preparation. Prepping your car for the cold winter weather will help it continue to run well, even in the harshest conditions. Before the weather starts to drop you should consider booking your vehicles in for a winter maintenance package. There is an advantage to booking your appointment early. Most people wait until the weather has already gotten cold to call their mechanic, and this often results in having to wait for an appointment, which is not ideal if the snow has already started to fall.

 

Your winter maintenance package should include a general tune-up, oil and filter change. Make sure you or your mechanic also check your:

 

  • Battery
  • Anti-freeze levels (this should be done every two years at least)
  • Washer fluid levels (you may want to switch to a winter solution)
  • Heaters, defrosters and wipers are in good working order
  • Brakes and brake lines are working well
  • Exhaust to ensure there are no carbon monoxide leaks, which is especially dangerous in winter when people drive with the windows up
  • Exterior headlights are working and are properly aimed.

 

Of course you’ll also want to make an appointment to replace your summer or all-season tires with your winter tires. Ensure that your tires are properly aligned after they are installed on your vehicle. Store your seasonal tires in a safe, dry place throughout the winter. If you don’t have space then check with your mechanic — many will store your tires for an additional fee.