Taking care of a few things for your car before a winter trip ensures you’ll be safe in any event. Because if you get stranded, it might take a while for a tow truck to arrive.
So, before you do winter driving, perform a pre-trip inspection, maintenance services, and other things to prepare for winter driving. Here are a few tips.
1. Inspect Your Tires.
Tires are one of the essential things to check before leaving on a long trip. This is especially true if snow is on the ground or you expect snowfall while traveling.
Tires should have more than the minimum tread depth. At 2/32 of an inch, you hardly have enough tread to push the snow from under the tires. At 4/32 of an inch, it might be enough, although we recommend more than this figure as your tires will likely wear further before you get back.
Consider using winter tires this season. Also, have your tires balanced and rotated if these haven’t been done for some time.
2. Change Oil.
If you haven’t had an oil change for a few months, change the oil before you leave. You’re most likely going to put a few thousand miles on the vehicle, and it’s better to have fresh oil.
3. Top Off Antifreeze and Other Car Fluids.
You should have a technician check your vehicle’s antifreeze system before taking a winter trip. This will ensure the chemicals are still at good levels to keep the block from freezing.
At Bock Auto, we can service the antifreeze system and replenish it with new fluid if necessary. We’ll check other fluids, too, and top them off as required.
4. Get the Necessary Brake Services.
Brakes are undoubtedly the most critical safety component of your vehicle. Have them checked before a trip and have the damaged or worn-out parts repaired or replaced.
For instance, if the pads are thin, don’t expect them to last a 500-mile trip. Thus, it’s better to change the pads at an auto repair shop you trust than at a random shop at your destination.
5. Test Your Car Battery.
Cold conditions can significantly reduce your battery’s capacity or damage it. Batteries will also take longer to charge or freeze in extreme conditions.
Thus, check your battery and replace it if necessary. If not, a weak battery can leave you stranded on the road.
6. Pack for the Trip.
Your car is not the only one that needs preparation. You also have to be ready by packing a few essentials, like:
- First aid kit
- At least 2 liters of water for every person in the vehicle
- An extra set of clean, dry clothing
- An extra jacket
- A blanket for each person in the vehicle
- Waterproof matches
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- High-energy food, such as peanut butter or chocolate
Prepare for Winter Driving with the Help of Bock Auto
At Bock Auto in Amagansett, NY, we’ll help you with auto repairs, preventative maintenance, and winterization services. We do so to help keep our customers safe and their cars in working order this winter.