Last week, we went over some automotive issues you might come across in the colder months like dead batteries, failed spark plugs, or cars not starting. This week, we’ll touch on some simpler, but equally important routine maintenance. If you miss some of these crucial winter practices, it can lead to frustrating issues. Check out these winter automotive reminders!
Windshield Wipers Freezing
Your wipers are essential for braving the winter weather, and keeping your visibility clear in rain, sleet, and snow. However, they become more vulnerable in freezing weather. They can freeze to your windshield, which could cause them to tear if you tried to turn them on–which is definitely not something you want to happen in the middle of a storm.
To keep your wipers safe in cold temperatures, you’ll want to add checking on them to your routine. If you know cold weather is coming and you can’t get your car under cover, you can raise your wipers up and away from your windshield to prevent them from freezing. You can even just check to test your wipers and clear away ice and snow before you start your drive. Or, if you’re looking to invest in a simple solution, you can also buy winter wiper blades that are specifically designed for winter conditions.
Tires Losing Pressure
Changing temperatures are infamous for causing tire pressure fluctuations. For every 10 degrees the temperature drops, your tires will drop about 1 PSI. That means a drop of 30 degrees or more could put your car’s tires under the recommended PSI, which negatively impacts the vehicle’s traction, handling, and overall life of the tires. With how much our weather changes, from those strangely nice and out of nowhere 40-50 degree days to the quick switch to freezing temps, it’s crucial to keep an eye on your tire pressure.
Imagine this: it’s a chilly Monday morning and you’re getting ready to head to work. You’re all bundled up, and you’ve got your coffee in hand, but once you come out to your car and try to get in, you realize that your locks are frozen. Yikes. Not a great way to start your day/ Frozen locks happen when vehicles are wet during a freeze, which causes the water to ice over in your locks. To steer clear of this frustrating issue, keep a can of de-icer or hand sanitizer on hand to melt the ice. The high amounts of ice-melting ethanol and isopropanol alcohol will come in handy in melting the ice. Be careful not to force the key into the lock or try to turn it–if it becomes stuck, that could break both the lock and key, making your already frustrating morning even worse.
These tips are fairly simple and probably familiar to you if you’ve been through a few Iowa winters, but you never know when these issues might make an appearance in your life, so having these tips and tricks in your back pocket might just save the day. Stay safe and warm out there!