Barbara H. Asks: How do I prepare my car for winter?

Well Barbara that is a good question. It is that time of year when you ask yourself: “Is my car ready for winter”? Well usually the first thing people think about is snow tires, then winter wiper blades, and battery. Then there is that stuff called antifreeze. It seems that here in New England you can’t do enough sometimes to get ready for winter and I am going to set your mind at ease. So the most important thing is

your snow tires, and I am asked every season this question. “Hey Joe will I be okay with all season tires this winter”? I am usually asked this question because people do not want to be burdened with the extra expense of purchasing snow tires. I then ask the question, “How far do you have to commute to work”? Do you have to go over a lot of hills etc? Ultimately this is a decision that you need to make for yourself. If you do not have to leave your home in inclement weather then you may be okay with all season tires. But if you have any doubt in your mind you should buy four snow tires of matching sizes and tread design to give you your best traction and safety. If you frequently confront icy conditions you should go with for studded snow tires. You should definitely use winter wiper blades to offer you the best visibility during the winter months. If your battery is 4 years old get it tested. If it tests okay you still need to know that it could test good that day and fail the next especially if there is a cold snap. For peace of mind you may want to replace your battery if it is 4 to 5 years old for maximum reliability in the winter months.

Antifreeze tester hydometer

Antifreeze tester hydrometer indicating 34 below zero protection level.

Make sure if you have your antifreeze replaced that, if mixed it is to be mixed 50/50 with distilled water only. Tap water can cause the antifreeze to quickly become acidic within your vehicles cooling system and cause issues down the road. If you are thinking about adding dry gas to your fuel tank you may want to hold off on that. Most fuel that you put in your tank is 15% ethanol, so there is no real need to add “dry” gas to your tank. It is also a good idea to keep an emergency box in your trunk. Items in the box should include,

* Safety flares.

* Hand warmers.

* Blanket.

* Flashlight.

* Extra batteries.

* Traction sand, or tire chains if needed.

* Jumper cables or fully charged jump box.

* Tow chain or tow rope.

Don’t forget your cell phone and charger!


You can never be too prepared in the winter months! I hope that

I have answered your question Barbara. Also please keep in mind that shops that offer winter check over’s should already be doing that type of check with a regular service and you should not be charged extra for it. Stay warm Barbara and drive carefully!


You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Reply