I was just listening to the weather report and they tell me, snow is on its way! It made me stop and wonder if my car is prepared to meet with the winter weather. This is my list of car maintenance tips for winter. Check and see how your car stacks up!
- Inspect windshield wipers. Wiper blades are like squeegees. The arms of the wiper drag a thin rubber strip across the windshield to clear away the water. The rubber needs to be clean without any nicks or cracks in order to clean the windshield. Replace them if needed or wipe the edge of the blade with a cloth soaked in window cleaner until all the dirt is removed, this helps the blades make a tight seal against the window and prevents streaks. Never use your wipers to clear off the snow or ice from your windshield! Doing this will damage your wiper motor.
- Clean headlights. Wash them with soapy water, rinse them, and then apply a nonabrasive car wax with a soft cloth. The wax is water-repellent and leaves a barrier that keeps dirt from building up on the lights. It’s a good idea to do this once a month especially during the winter.
- Preserve door and window seals. Wipe a rubber protectant (like Armor-All) or silicone on the window and door weatherstripping to keep it in good condition. Don’t use an oil based product, ( WD-40) because the oil can damage the rubber. Regular treatment of your car’s weatherstripping will lessen the likelihood of your doors sticking to the rubber seals in the cold winter weather.
- Maintain car battery. Keep your battery clean, wipe it with a damp rag. Clean the battery posts or terminals using a brass wire brush and baking soda paste.
- Inspect wheel-well splashguards. Splashguards help keep water and winter’s salty slush from splashing up into the engine compartment where it can damage sensitive electrical components. Check these guards for damage when you wash your car and re-secure or replace them as needed.
- Wash your car in winter too. Washing your car is even more important in the winter than in other times of the year. All the sand, slush and ice mixed in with the road salt is exactly what makes your car rust. The fastest corrosion occurs when the temperature repeatedly rises and falls below freezing. Especially during the messy months, be sure to rinse the undercarriage and hard-to-reach areas that are susceptible to rust, like the bumpers and inside the wheel wells.
And last on our list of car maintenance tips for winter is, go easy when you’re stuck. When you get stuck in mud or snow, don’t make the problem worse by damaging an expensive component. Gently rocking in an attempt to free the car is OK, but if it looks as if you’re really stuck, don’t keep it up. Throwing your car from forward to reverse repeatedly, can generate a lot of heat and cause trouble for transmissions, clutches, and differentials. You’re better off calling a tow truck than risking major damage to your engine by trying to get out on your own.
For all of your Denver Auto Repair needs, trust Express Car Care. Call (303) 691-2760 or stop by our shop today.