With winter on the horizon, we’ve listed a few tips on how to get your car winter-ready, as well as the types of winter car insurance you might need to protect your vehicle.
A well-maintained car is guaranteed to keep you safe even when the road conditions are terrible. After all, don’t you want your loved ones to be safe when you are at the wheel? With winter 2021 around the corner, here are some tips to keep your car in good working order. Additionally, you may want to check the validity of your car insurance and add an extra layer of protection with comprehensive or collision car insurance coverage.
1. Ensure your car battery is good health.
In extremely cold temperatures, the chemical reactions required to generate electricity in a car battery slow down, and your car requires more current from the battery to start the engine. Run a battery load test to verify if your battery has enough juice to start on a cold morning. Check for cracks in the battery cables and terminals, and make sure the fluid level is at the top of the cap (if not, fill it with distilled water).
2. Use anti-freeze wiper fluid.
Driving in the winter is difficult enough; limited visibility makes it even more difficult. It’s critical to have adequate wiper fluid to keep your windshield clear of ice, snow, salt, and muck. Make sure you’re using a wiper fluid that won’t freeze.
3. Replace your wiper blades.
It takes a lot of effort to keep your windshield clear of winter precipitation, so ensure that your car’s wiper blades are in good shape and up to the challenge. Most wiper blades are only usable for a year, so you’ll probably need to replace them soon. While you’re at it, consider investing in a heavy-duty wiper blade built exclusively for winter weather.
4. Replace your tires.
In the winter, tires with worn treads are a major hazard. If you reside in a snowy area, consider acquiring winter tires constructed of softer rubber that stays flexible in freezing temperatures and have treads specifically engineered to preserve their grip in snow and ice.
For the optimum winter traction, ensure sure your all-season tires have at least 5/32” tread depth. If the tread on your tires is less than 2/32”, they will have virtually little grip in the snow and will be prone to aquaplaning in the rain. We recommend replacing your tires regardless of the season.
Here’s a quick technique to see how well your tread holds up: With Lincoln’s head pointed down, place a penny in a tread groove. Replace your tires if no portion of Lincoln’s head is visible.
5. Check your tire pressure regularly.
Whether they are new or old, make sure your tires are properly inflated for winter conditions. Since air pressure in your tires drops at a rate of about 1 PSI every 10 degrees when the temperature drops, check your tire pressure frequently to ensure it remains at the manufacturer’s suggested level. The standard tire pressure recommendation is 30-35 PSI, but check your owner’s handbook for the actual figure.
6. Replace the oil in your car.
To ensure all the mechanical bits in your car function smoothly, make sure you have fresh oil. Cold weather thickens engine oil and limits its circulation through the motor, so make sure you have fresh oil. Some experts advocate using a thinner oil during the winter. Check with your owner’s handbook or a mechanic to determine if this is appropriate for your vehicle.
7. Inspect your hoses and belts.
Cold temperatures might weaken the belts and hoses that keep your engine running. Check any belts and hoses for cracks or signs of wear and tear before winter arrives, and replace them if necessary.
8. Keep an emergency kit in your vehicle.
Winter weather can still catch you off guard and put you in a risky scenario despite your best efforts. Prepare for the unexpected by stocking your car with emergency supplies such as blankets, flares, a jack, a first-aid kit, flashlight, shovel, food, and kitty litter or sand for traction in the event you become stuck.
9. Make sure you have valid winter car insurance.
While many car owners are aware of the importance of getting car insurance, few know that it is also necessary to renew car insurance before it expires. Failure to renew auto insurance before it expires will leave you uninsured, put you in legal problems, and put you at risk of financial loss in the event of a car accident. To strike the appropriate balance between coverage, premium, and your budget, use a car insurance calculator or simply visit way.com to obtain free car insurance quotes in your state.
You may also want to opt for comprehensive and/or collision car insurance plan with add-ons such as Roadside assistance and Engine Protection. Roadside Assistance will take care of the car if it is stranded during a journey due to mechanical failure. Want to know more about winter car insurance? Check out our handy winter car insurance guide here.