5 Ways to Winterize Your Car
It’s that time of year again. The time when the winter blues sets in on your beloved vehicle, and for those of you who prefer not to store away your precious ride for the winter, we have a few tips for keeping it performing perfectly despite the wind, snow, hail, and all manner of other struggles that come with winter driving.
Vehicles have come a long way since the days of the 20th century when winterizing a vehicle was absolutely mandatory to get the mildest amount of performance out of it and hope for it to survive until spring. With modern technology, however, a vehicle is so protected against the elements that owners often forego these hassles of the past, such as changing tires or belts, but along with the new technology comes some new and not so new challenges.
Tires in the Winter
One challenge to vehicles which persist despite having come such a long way is the need to check tire pressure. The contrasting weather between summer and winter can result in 30-40-degree drops, depending on where you live, and this can mean that the pressure per square inch in your tires (psi) can be dropped to unsafe levels. Methods for keeping this issue at bay include:
- Changing the tire entirely for snow and ice with winter tires if permitted, or just keeping the pressure up in the tire with a compressor on your own or a quick visit to the performance shop.
- Another way to regulate the pressure of your all-important rubber is to inflate the tires using nitrogen, which is more stable than traditional air. This can be done for a small fee at just about any performance shop.
Winter Battery Tips
Checking your battery is another element of winter driving which has remained largely the same as it was in the 20th century. Although batteries are more durable than ever, protecting themselves from the elements, they are still subject to the chemical reactions which come with their components and the bite of winter weather.
- In particularly cold climates where snow is inevitable, and temperatures can drop to 5 degrees or below, the battery in your car is not generating the power necessary for your components to function optimally. Replacement of the battery to a winter specified battery could do the trick, or just simple maintenance of your current battery if it is new enough.
- Another way to regulate battery power distribution to the components of your vehicle is to keep it charged. Many automotive manufacturers offer a battery charger for their vehicles which keeps the battery at healthy charge levels for times when you need it most, these charging systems are not very expensive, and will be worth it when your baby starts in the dead of night despite the approaching snow storm.
- When the force of the snow becomes too overwhelming, it’s time to break out the snow chains. This is truly answering brute nature with brute force. This method has prevailed through to the modern era and is still just as effective as ever at getting you through the most torrential of snowfall.
Cold weather can be misinterpreted as being less harsh on the components of humans and vehicles due to its cooler nature where engines seem to thrive as opposed to hot climates where their power is drained due to thinner air and lack of oxygen, but to the contrary, winter weather is much drier and harsh in many cases than the hotter climates where those characteristics are more often associated. Keeping your cars paint and overall components protected during the winter is just as important as protecting its core functioning components.
- Applying a sealant and wax to the paint can keep it looking fresh and new, allowing it to weather the storm, much like lotion does for your skin during the winter, so that when spring comes, your car shines as if it hadn’t just been through that most recent snowstorm that everyone is talking about.
Hydrophobic Windshield Application
A simple application of a windshield sealant can keep the snow and rain falling right off of your vehicle with ease. Much like the sealant and wax mentioned above will do for your paint, rain x and other hydrophobic windshield applicants are easy tools to utilize to maintain your all-important windshield clear so that you can keep your eyes on the road.
We love our vehicles; they transport our loved ones and keep us on the go when it is most important for those we love. They brave the winter storms and the beaming heat of summer and we hope these tips and tricks keep you safe this winter season, and for the road ahead. Your modern-day vehicle was meant to weather the storm, just treat it with its equal due and give it the necessary attention it deserves so that it can keep you on the road.
Concerned your vehicle isn’t modern enough to brave the storm this winter? Head to Don Beyer Mazda to find the perfect car with all the modern tech and safety features!