This post was guest by Jack Bartner (content writer at Kambio). The opinions expressed in this article are the guest’s own.
As a Canadian driver, you may encounter many difficulties when the road is snowy. In the morning, you wait until your car will heat up and get ice off the windshield to be able to see the road. Harsh winter conditions affect your car’s performance. Some people don’t feel like going out during the winter months and prefer staying at home and enjoying time there as much as possible, however, others love to travel during the winter and stay for a week somewhere else to feel the magic of each snowflake. No matter which type you belong to, you’ll need these tips that can help maintain your car in winter. You need to plan more carefully during winter than in summer as it’s harder when you are stuck in the cold than in hot weather.
Let’s dive deeper into the 5 tips for car maintenance on snowy roads.
#1 Check Lights
Your car’s brake lights, headlights, and signal lights are essential for maintaining visibility and ensuring a safe trip. You know that in winter it gets dark earlier than in summer, so you need to ensure that all of the lights on the car’s outside function properly for safe winter driving. Lights will assist you in seeing what is ahead as well as inform other drivers of your whereabouts. Before getting in the driver’s seat, ensure to brush the snow off your rear and front lights. Replace your lights as soon as possible if you discover that they are beginning to dim.
#2 Check for Wipers
Windshield wipers are used to clean the windows of your car to provide you with a clear view. They should be clean without leaving spots or streaking. Check for proper windshield wiper operation so you can easily clean the windows. It’s really challenging to drive in the winter even when your windshield is clean. So, it would be even harder and more dangerous when these wiper blades are worn and there is no washer fluid. Snow, rain, and mist — all limit visibility in the winter. The rubber should be able to grip the glass tightly without squeaking or scratching. Wiper fluid is frequently used to keep your windshield clean while driving in the winter.
Regularly check the level of your windshield wiper fluid and top it off if necessary to avoid running out. Consider using a wiper fluid that is suitable for usage in freezing temperatures.
#3 Test Defroster and Heater
Your windshield stays clean from the inside and outside with a defroster which keeps your windows from icing up and fogging while your heater provides a warm and comfortable atmosphere along the way. Ensure to check both of them to see whether they are in the proper working condition. Good visibility out of your windows will assist you to avoid collisions with other vehicles and road barriers. And the heater should work at all speeds to attain a temperature that will help you warm up during cold seasons. If you discover that one of these systems is starting to fail, you should have it checked and fixed as soon as possible.
#4 Don’t Neglect Tire Change and Measure Its Pressure
While your tires are crucial in any season, their condition is more important in the winter. Good tires will aid you in driving through the snow. Tire change is essential as you cannot use summer tires in winter and vice versa. Winter roads can be risky since they are icy and slippery. If the temperature drops below 7 degrees Celsius, you should switch your tires to winter ones. You can also choose mobile tire change so that you don’t have to take time out of your busy day to visit a technician. Tread patterns, rubber compounds, sips, and biting edges on winter tires are all meant to improve vehicle control on icy and slippery roads. You should also keep a spare tire on hand because you never know what may occur on the road. If necessary, replace your worn tire with a spare one to ensure the safety of your journey.
Keep in mind that your car’s tire is one of the most important components because it keeps your vehicle moving. Tires must be properly inflated to prevent the possibility of a blowout. Every ten degrees that the temperature drops, your tires lose a pound of pressure, resulting in poor gas mileage and an increased chance of a crash. Fill your tires with air and check for proper tire pressure, which can be found on a placard or in the owner’s manual. It’s risky to drive with low tire pressure, and it can even cause early tire wear. Top it up once you notice its level is low.
#5 Consider Oil Change and Check Your Car’s Battery
The oil in the engine is in charge of lubricating various components. It lowers the amount of friction and heat generated by driving. Oil grows heavier and full of particles as it ages. Your engine’s performance will be preserved if you use a new oil. Opt for mobile oil change services to change your car’s oil and have your car maintenance checked.
Also, colder temperatures make it more difficult for your battery to work properly, resulting in a weak or expired battery throughout the winter. At least twice a year, inspect your car’s battery. Before you leave on your holiday road trip, take your car battery to a professional if you notice any problems.
These were some tips for you to follow before going on a trip in winter. Refer to our checklist and have a nice trip!