The harsh winter months are upon us and whether that means massive blizzards and freezing temperatures, rain soaked commutes or just the stress of traveling back and forth during the holidays, you need to ensure that your vehicle is ready for whatever Mother Nature throws your way. Following these suggestions is one way to make sure you’re prepared.
The first (and easiest) way to make sure that your vehicle is running smoothly is to bring it to your dealership and have the factory trained professionals go over it to see if there are any major issues that need immediate care and attention. The battery, belts and hoses, cooling system, and tires should all be thoroughly looked at. While you’re there it’s advisable to ask them any specific questions or concerns that you have. They’ll make sure your vehicle is ready for winter.
Even with your vehicle in tip top shape, you want to be prepared should anything happen to you during your travels. Nearly every automotive publication and roadside assistance provider has a list of helpful tips and necessities you should keep handy. Here’s a collection of them, and while some of them seem obvious, it’s important none the less.
Make sure that you’re aware of the forecast before you leave on your trip, and if necessary, delay the trip if a serious storm is expected. If leaving is imperative, make sure a contact is aware of the route you’re taking and your expected time of arrival. Be sure to check in every so often if possible too.
Try making sure that you have at least half a tank of fuel in case you can’t seem to get to a gas station.
If you do get stranded, don’t wander away where you may lose sight of your vehicle. Stay close for multiple reasons. First of all, your vehicle provides excellent shelter, and second, rescuers will be more prone to check for your there. Tying a bright colored cloth or a cloth at the top of the window is a sign of distress.
Always try to keep a first aid kit, shovel, broom and ice scraper, sand or kitty litter to provide traction, jumper cables, warning devices (like flares or triangles), a cell phone with charger, blankets, and enough food and water for everyone who’s travelling. Any medicine should be brought along as well.
- Although snow is obviously a hazard, rain can be dangerous too if you’re not prepared. Your tires are especially important in keeping contact with the road so be sure to check the tread of your vehicle. Winter tires aren’t just for areas that receive snow. When the temperature dips below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, the rubber starts to harden and lose some of its grip. A special pair of winter tires may be the perfect solution.
Don’t let the elements get in your way this holiday season. Stop by the dealership and let us help ensure smooth sailing all winter long.
This article is presented by Perkins Motors in Colorado Springs, Colorado.