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Preparing Your Car for Winter

October 15th, 2018

According to the Farmers’ Almanac, this winter will be a cold and snowy one with “teeth-chattering” temperatures and plenty of snow. While today’s temperatures may still feel fall-like, it’s not too early to start preparing for the winter season before it arrives in December. With the right maintenance and preparation, this winter doesn’t have to take drivers by surprise and can help keep you and your passengers safe!

The personal injury attorneys at Dale E. Anstine care about our community and offer the following tips to help prepare your vehicle for winter:

  • Replace wiper blades
  • Check your tires
  • Fill the fluids
  • Stock your car
  • Have your vehicle inspected by a professional

Replace Wiper Blades

Most drivers never think they need new wiper blades until it’s too late. Clean, new wipers can help increase visibility in rain and snow and should be replaced every six months. When is it time for new blades? Streaks or missed expanses of glass are good indicators your wiper blades are wearing out and need to be replaced.

Check Your Tires

For frequent or long-distance drives, consider snow tires or winter tires, which are specially designed with low-temperature-resilient rubber compounds that include deep treads to grip better in snow and ice. All-season tires (which are different from snow tires) have compounds that can get brittle in low temperatures, and as a result, can grip less. Winter tire compounds remain flexible when temperatures are low and can help keep a car’s safety systems functioning properly.

Fill the Fluids

During winter conditions, roads are often treated with ice-melt or other chemicals to help reduce the amount of snow and ice on the roads. While this treatment helps keep roads clear, it also creates a chemical-moisture that ends up on windshields. During the winter months, keep wiper fluid levels full with appropriate fluid for the conditions to keep the windshield clear and transparent. Consider using low-temperature resistant fluid that won’t freeze in extreme temperatures. Remember, regular fluid is mixed with water and can easily freeze, causing wiper systems to malfunction.

Stock Your Car

Sometimes winter weather takes drivers by surprise as roads become impassable or dangerous to navigate. Be prepared in case you get stranded waiting for emergency personnel to clear the roads. Carrying supplies in your car may save your life. At minimum, stock the car with:

  • Blanket
  • Jumper cables
  • Flashlight
  • Chains
  • First-aid kit
  • Small knife
  • Flares
  • Energy bars or other food
  • Gloves
  • Small shovel
  • Ice scraper
  • Bag of sand or kitty litter to help provide traction when stuck in the snow

Have Your Vehicle Inspected by a Professional

The best way to ensure a vehicle is winter-ready is to have a professional do an inspection. Local repair shops can check battery health, tires, electrical systems, fluid levels and coolant systems while keeping in mind winter weather conditions. Most people are uncomfortable performing routine maintenance on their cars, so make an appointment with a professional to gain confidence the vehicle is ready for winter.

While winter weather isn’t here just yet, the personal injury attorneys at Dale E. Anstine encourage all motorists to take the necessary steps to prepare for the season. While we hope you never need our services, if you or someone you love is injured in a car accident or through negligence of another person, reach out today for your free consultation. Get a specialized attorney on your side who has a full understanding of personal injury law. With offices in York and Gettysburg, our team is proud to protect the injured across the Central Pennsylvania community. Consultations are always free, we’re available 24/7 and there’s no fee unless we win for you.