What Should I be Doing For Winter Car Care?

winter car careCaring for your vehicle during the cold winter months is even more important than your regular car maintenance routines.  Cold weather can be extremely rough on a car’s engine, interior and exterior and if you don’t care for your car well this winter you will be in for some surprises this spring.

Winter Car Care

  • Keep your battery charged
  • Get good floor mats
  • Wash your car regularly
  • Check your coolant freeze point
  • Use the right type of oil

Keep Your Battery Charged

Cold weather will kill your battery quickly due to the way it’s constructed.  Keep your battery charged will keep you from getting stranded and will help extend the life of your battery.  Driving your car for at least 15 minutes at least once per week will keep your battery charged up if it’s in the good shape.  Also, you can get a battery maintainer or float charger to keep your battery alive during the cold months.  If you’re wondering what the current state of your battery is, check out our video from the garage!

Get Good Floor Mats

Either that or take off your shoes when you get into your car.  The carpet in your car is just like the carpet in your house, just maybe with a shorter pile.  It doesn’t like getting wet, dirty or having road salt ground into it. Good floor mats, even if they aren’t rubber, can save you a lot of damage to your car’s interior.

Wash Your Car Regularly

Washing your car regularly is one of the best things you can do for winter car care.  Even if you keep your car waxed, the exterior can take a beating from the weather.  Always hand wash your car or use a touchless automatic car wash. Make sure to spray the underside of your car focusing on suspension components to make sure any road dirt or salt doesn’t have time to rot your bushings and ball joints.

Check Your Coolant Freeze Point

If your antifreeze isn’t mixed properly it may freeze if it gets too cold.  Most auto parts stores sell test strips you can dunk in your radiator and get a temperature at which your coolant will freeze.  If the temperature is warmer than your expected lows this winter, it’s time for a radiator flush.

Use the Right Type of Oil

Your vehicle’s user’s manual will have a list of recommended engine oils for use at different temperatures.  Using too heavy of an oil in the winter will significantly increase cold start wear on your motor. The correct weight oil will help keep your engine lubricated even at low temperatures.  Using a full synthetic oil can help increase lubrication in your engine at low temperatures. If you find your car smoking or burning oil due to engine wear or cold starts in the winter, ad BlueDevil Smoke Stop and Engine Repair to your engine oil to reduce engine smoke and stop oil loss.

You can pick up BlueDevil Smoke Stop and Engine Repair at one of your local auto parts stores like:

  • AutoZone
  • Advance Auto Parts
  • CarQuest Auto Parts
  • NAPA Auto Parts
  • O’Reilly Auto Parts
  • Pep Boys
  • Canadian Tire
  • Walmart

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winter_car_care.jpg – By Scharfsinn86 – Licensed by Getty Images – Original Link