Winter is coming and before it hits, it’s vital that you have your car checked – particularly your tires. Let’s be honest, the majority of people wait until the very last minute to take care of this important task, but you shouldn’t. You want to know that your car is ready for winter roads, icy conditions, and snowfall. Part of being a car owner is winterizing your vehicle to keep you safe, as well as your passengers, and everyone else on the road. Sadly, over half of American drivers fail to do this which results in costly accidents and injuries.
1. Tire Tread
Your tires get worn down and if you don’t have them rotated regularly then the tread is an even bigger deal come winter. Low tread depth is dangerous enough in the best of driving conditions, but come winter driving conditions you put everyone’s life at risk by not having your tire tread checks. The purpose of tire tread is to provide your vehicle with traction on the road, and when those roads are icy, wet, slippery or snowy you need that traction more than ever. You should be able to drive with confidence, knowing that if a situation arises your car can stop on a dime. Visit your local, trusted mechanic to have your tread checked and if it doesn’t stand up to the test then it’s time to replace your tires.
2. Tire Pressure
You should check your tire pressure regularly throughout the year, it is always important. However, when winter comes it’s even more crucial to safe driving.
The cold can cause your tire air to contract, which makes your tires much flatter than they need to be. It isn’t just dangerous to drive on tires that aren’t at the correct pressure it can result in wheel damage, too. Why deal with that hassle when you could just check your pressure and fill them up at the gas station? Make sure to check them regularly. If you live in a particularly cold area you might as well check them whenever you stop for gas. It only takes a couple of minutes and it could save your life.
A quick check of your owner’s manual will tell you what the magic number is for your car’s tire pressure.
3. Winter Tires
If you’re often driving through snow, hitting hills, and climbing mountains then you should probably buy snow tires. Even if your vehicle is a powerful one standard tires probably won’t be sufficient for the snow you’re driving through. Yes, snow tires are expensive, however they’re the surest way to keep yourself mobile even in the most treacherous conditions. You can speak to your mechanic about where is best to buy them, as well as asking advice on what type is right for your vehicle.
Since you’re already visiting your trusted mechanic to check up on your tread and inquire about winter tires, you may as well have your brakes checked. You might as well have your battery checked as well, along with your oil, anti-freeze, and your wiper system. It’s better to be safe than sorry.