How To Take Care Of Your Car In Winter
| Jeff McEachran
The winter months can be tough on cars. Exposure to harsh winds, rain, snow, sleet, mud, and other debris can cause extensive damage. Additionally, battling icy conditions and snow-ridden roads can create considerable wear and tear on both cars and trucks. Learning how to take care of your car in the winter is a skill that every vehicle owner should master to ensure longer lifespan and better value.
There are major factors to consider when assessing maintenance on a car or truck during the frigid winter months. It’s never too early to prepare for cold, harsh climates. Here’s a compiled list of car care factors to consider. Be sure to check out our other winterizing tips:
Tips To Care For Your Car In The Winter
These tips are designed for those that live in colder climates with long and harsh winters, but can also be applied to general maintenance of vehicles. Whether you are moving to a new area, taking an extended trip during winter, or are looking for new ways to care for your car, we have the best winter care tips. To start, Business Insider advises that car owners consider the follow basic tips when preparing for winter car care:
Additionally, due to poor driving conditions, it’s important that you frequently clean and inspect your car for obstructions. Many vehicle owners overlook the safety perks and value of a well cleaned car.
1. Washing A Vehicle In Winter
Addressing how to take care of your car in the winter should always begin with a good wash. Snow, slush, ice, salt, and mud on the roads can leave a vehicle exposed to the aftermath of drastic weather conditions. And while it can seem pointless to clean your car when road conditions are bad regardless, it’s one of the most important ways to avoid obstructions and deadly accidents.
The last thing that you want is a build-up of dirt and grime. Before winter hits, a full detailing job that includes wash, wax, and polish should be a major priority. Washing a vehicle in the winter can help ensure that the exterior of the vehicle stays pristine and is ready to face the brutal roads.
Using car blow dryers like BLO can make a world of difference when addressing how to take care of your car in the winter. Using one of BLO’s car air dryers can help save time and ensure that a vehicle isn’t absorbing moisture that can cause build-up. Available in a large and compact size, these portable car dryers use a powerful motor to provide hot filtered air that can ensure a complete dry job.
Drying is one of the most important steps in getting the winter dirt off your vehicle. Pro blow car dryers can help remove moisture quickly and efficiently. They also provide filtered air to prevent debris of attaching to the vehicle, while giving continuous warm air flow for effective drying.
Use the large and extendable nozzle to direct this air at your car and blast it dry. The dryer comes with swivel wheels meaning you can move the large device around your car with ease and get the dry and clean car that you deserve.
3. Winter Windshield Wipers
Once your car is clean and dry, you will want to consider your windshield wipers. Not all standard wipers are equipped to deal with heavy rain or snowfall. Especially if your wipers are old, they might have become damaged and in need of a replacement. Check them before the winter hits and replace them if necessary. Many experts recommend replacing your wiper blades annually.
New windshield wipers not an options? Instead, try wiping windshield wiper blades down with window cleaner, vinegar, or rubbing alcohol. Soak a rag with these and scrub both ways up and down on the rubber part of the blade. As you do this, press hard. You will see black stuff come off which is dirty and dry rubber. With this gone, you will notice your blades will do a better job. Be sure to also clean your windshield regularly.
4. Snow Tires
Neglected tires are a major cause of accidents in the winter months. If you want to learn how to take care of your car in the winter properly, don’t overlook the importance of new tires.
New tires, especially those created for harsh winter months, can help to keep you safe under slippery roads and other scary weather conditions. Be sure to check these tires throughout the winter to ensure that they are still functioning as they should and provide the grip that you need.
Factors to Consider When Driving Under Wintery Roads:
5. Keep Battery Charged
The cold winter weather can put more stress on your car battery, especially if you park your car outdoors. To help save your battery from this extra stress, consider keeping a vehicle in the garage. Be sure to check the battery’s overall health. According to AAA, most batteries last between three and five years.
Before the cold weather hits, pay a visit to a mechanic and have them check your battery and its charging system.
Testing your battery beforehand and ensuring that it's in tip-top condition saves you from being stuck in a car with a dead battery in freezing conditions or paying through the roof at the shop your car has been towed to. Save yourself all the hassle and stress and get your battery checked today!
6. Waxing Your Vehicle
According to Cars Direct, wax can help repel precipitation like rain, snow, and ice. Apply more wax at the beginning of winter to help protect a vehicle from early frosts.
Also, consider applying wax during dry periods before snow or rain showers to protect it from moisture and cold. Prior to waxing, ensure that the car is completely clean and free of winter build-up. Try to focus specifically on the tires and front grill areas, as well as windows. Use products from Gyeon Quartz to assist and be sure that a car is completely dry before applying wax. Washing should always include a proper car drying system.
7. Weather Mats
Another step is to take a look at your car mats. While most of us will have a fabric mat in our car, in winter that is going to get filled with snow, grit, water, and all other kinds of grim that we don’t want in our car. It can even make it difficult for us to get in and out of our car and runs the risk of this grim being transferred to our carpets.
A good tip is to swap these out for all-weather mats. They are typically rubber or plastic mats and are tough enough to keep mud and dirt off your carpets. They are also far easier to clean, simply pull them out and give them a good shake, chances are, the dirt and grime will just roll off. Bonus perk is using your BLO car dryer to easily blow off moisture after washing out a car’s floor mats.
8. Regularly Check Your Car
Before the winter months hit, it's worth taking your car for its annual service, or a check-up. Have a mechanic check your brakes, tires, and other areas of your car to ensure that everything is as it should be. You don’t want to hit a patch of ice and be betrayed by your brakes or stuck on a long drive home with heaters only blowing cold air.
Often, the check will come back clean, but we think it's better to be safe than sorry during the winter. Your mechanic will also be able to offer you tailored advice on your car and provide you with even more tips and tricks to care for your car during the winter.
Check oil levels and fluids to remove any debris that could cause any issues. It's worth doing this before setting off on long journeys, or anytime that you use your car during, particularly cold days. Regularly checking your car could be the difference between a smooth ride and an unpleasant one, or even a breakdown.
9. Add A Survival Kit
This might not technically be a care step, but one that you will be super thankful that you followed! While it's important to prepare your car to survive the freezing temperatures and help it drive through the snow, it's also important to pack some necessities for yourself should you get stuck in your car for a few hours or involved in an accident.
Now, this kit won’t be helpful in all accident scenarios, but should you break down and be stuck in the snow for a few hours, or sitting in traffic, you will be grateful for these supplies! It’s a good idea to include the following:
Depending on how rural the roads are by you, you might wish to add more to your kit. After all, you don’t know how long you could be stuck in the car! Keep the kit under a seat or in the trunk so you can access it quickly when you need it and keep yourself warm in the chilly months.
BLO Car Dryer
Learning how to take care of your car during the winter months is important to increasing the value of a vehicle, as well as ensuring proper maintenance. Properly drying a car after every detailing job can help keep a vehicle in top shape to face the harsh weather and road conditions brought on by snow, sleet, and other winter conditions. BLO Car Dryers use high-pressure air at just the right temperature for your car’s surface. They get your vehicle dry to a perfect shine without drips, spots, swirls, scratching, or marring your car’s surface. The temperature and airflow are also ideal for drying those hard-to-reach contours and crevasses.
The twin high-power electric motors will ramp up to eight horsepower for quick movement of water on large panels of your vehicle. Designed by professional detailers, BLO dryers are user-friendly for both do-it-yourselfers and those in the business of detailing.