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New York City Snow Storm

Source: Derrick Salters/WENN.com / WENN

Winter is almost here and you don’t want to be stranded during the cold temps. Here are a few tips to help you winterize your car and be proactive about being safe during the frigid season.

Detroit Area Walloped With Over A Foot Of Snow From Latest Winter Storm

Source: Joshua Lott / Getty

Here is a great 11 point winter car protection checklist courtesy of Nationwide.com.

1. Check antifreeze and cooling system

  • Before temperatures drop significantly, drain your cooling system and add new antifreeze (draining the car radiator and refilling it with new coolant should be done at least once a year)
  • Check the owner’s manual for the proper coolant level
  • Make sure the reserve tank or overflow tank fluid levels are sufficient

2. Check tires

  • Check tires weekly for proper tread and recommended tire pressure (you’ll find the recommended tire pressure inside the driver’s side door, doorframe or in the owner’s manual)
  • Replace worn tires
  • All-weather tires are generally adequate for winter, but some states require vehicles to have tire chains or snow tires with studs, so make sure to check local laws
  • If you live in an area prone to snow and ice, consider winter tires, which are designed to better grip the icy pavement

3. Replace worn windshield wipers

  • Replace worn windshield wipers since sand and salt will be more prevalent on your windshield in winter weather
  • Replace wiper fluid with a winter mixture and maintain the proper fluid level
  • Consider winter wiper blades to help cut through snow and ice

4. Check brake pads and brake fluid

  • Check brake fluid levels and brake pads for wear and tear
  • Replace worn pads and rotors

5. Test car battery

  • Make sure battery cables and terminals are secure and free from corrosion
  • Test your battery by turning on the headlights before starting the engine – if they get brighter once you start the engine, schedule an appointment with a mechanic for further electrical inspection
  • If your battery is more than 3 years old, have it inspected by a mechanic

6. Check heater and defroster

  • Turn your heater and defroster on and off to make sure they are working correctly

7. Clean foggy headlights

  • Make sure all lights are clean and working properly
  • Clean lights off prior to driving in any type of precipitation
  • Replace headlights that are foggy, hazy or damaged to improve visibility

8. Check motor oil

  • Chang e you oil and filter at recommended intervals
  • Heavier oils thicken at lower temperatures and may not lubricate as well, so consider switching to “winter weight” or less viscous oil

9. Inspect exhaust system

  • Replace or repair leaks and crimped pipes to help keep carbon monoxide out of the passenger compartment

10. Keep gas tank at least half full

  • To keep moisture in the gas line from freezing and for easier cold-weather starts, keep at least a half of tank o f gas

11. Periodically wash your car

  • Prevent road salt from damaging your paint by washing your car during winter
  • Apply a fresh coat of  to avoid corrosion

Have a happy and safe winter. For more details, click here.

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