3 Ways to Help Prevent Ending Up in a Snow Bank
Rochester, New York is known to repeatedly have record-breaking winters, with temperatures as low as -16ºF (-26.7ºC). Last winter forced everyone indoors for most of the season, and you can safely bet this year won’t be any different. But in case you do have to venture into the snowy, blustery weather, how can you outfit your vehicle to prepare for the long winter ahead of us?
Car batteries work harder in the cold than they do in the heat of summer. A car battery is filled with chemicals that produce electrons, which create the power needed to start the car. During the cold winter months, the chemicals act sluggish, creating fewer electrons than usual. You’ll hear the engine cranking slowly as it struggles to start with less energy than it’s used to.
Make sure to park your car in the garage so the battery doesn’t get quite so cold. You don’t want to force the starter motor to work harder than it already does.
Your tire’s tread depth provides traction on the road, especially when the road surfaces are covered in ice. When that tread decreases with age, your vehicle will have a harder time gripping the road. You will likely end up sliding across the smooth surface every time you brake, corner, or speed.
Before the winter really picks up, check to see if you have more than a fourth of an inch tread depth left. Winter tires and snow tires are specially designed to accommodate slippery and snowy road surfaces. We strongly recommend switching to these tires for the season to keep you safe during road trips.
For many vehicles, antifreeze needs to be flushed, refreshed, and refilled every two years. Car owners depend on antifreeze most during the winter. Antifreeze protects your engine from freezing in the winter – without it, parts of your car would actually freeze and fall off.
Make sure you check the antifreeze reservoir frequently and top off for the winter. Some vehicles have a dashboard light that will come on when your antifreeze gets low, but not all vehicles have it, and it won’t come on if there’s an electrical problem with your car. Just remember to pop the hood on a regular basis and check for yourself.
The biggest piece of advice we can give you pertaining to winter car care is this: Don’t forget to maintain your vehicle this winter. During the cold months, it’s more crucial than ever to ensure all components of your system are running correctly. If you have any questions or need servicing, contact us or call 585.394.2350 and we’d be happy to help!
Written on Monday, January 11, 2016 by