It might only be November, and even though rain is in the forecast for now, winter snow is coming soon. That means it’s time to break out the hats, gloves, and winter boots to make sure you’re ready for the harsh winter weather in Vancouver. Along with the hats and gloves, it might be time to schedule an appointment with a mechanic to make sure your car is ready for the harsh winter. Nothing is worse than getting caught in a storm with flat tires and low levels of window washing fluid. So before the first real storm hits, make sure your car is winterized by coming to Clarke’s European Service & Repair Center for a checkup.
Your car wouldn’t get very far with a faulty battery, and cold winter weather can be especially hard on batteries. First, how old is your battery? Generally, most car batteries will last about five years. So if yours is between three and five years old, have a qualified mechanic check it out. A majority of services will do a battery test for free, or you could buy a tester for around $35.
Have you ever tried to drive through heavy snowfall with bad wiper blades? The snow builds up at the bottom of the windshield and there might be streaks of snow blocking your view. Not being able to see out your window can be extremely dangerous, and a simple fix is getting new wiper blades. Have your mechanic closely inspect your blades for frayed edges and have them replaced if they are around one year old. For added winter protection, you can replace them with blades designed specifically for winter.
- Washer Fluid: When you’re getting the wiper blades replaced, make sure you have a backup of washer fluid as well. Look for a blend that prevents the liquid from freezing, or you can simply add a splash of rubbing alcohol.
- Antifreeze: Making sure this level is where it should be might be the best way to winterize your car. Have a mechanic complete an antifreeze flush. Also consider adding a heat fuel additive to your gas tank to prevent liquid in the fuel lines from freezing.
- Snow Tires: If you’re able to, consider switching your summer or all-season tires out for snow tires. Unlike all-season tires that have the standard tread, snow tires have tread patterns that allow the car to grip into snow and ice. Snow tires are also made of a softer, more flexible material that helps them function better in the cold.
- Tire Pressure: When you can’t replace your tires, make sure they are properly inflated throughout the cold months. As weather gets colder, the air pressure in your tires will drop. When the temperature drops by 10 degrees, the pressure in your tire will decrease by 1 psi.
Whether you’re going on a road trip or to the grocery store, make sure you have an emergency kit just in case. This should include a blanket, high-protein snacks, a flashlight, jumper cables, phone charger, ice scraper, a candle and matches, and a shovel.
If you want to ensure your car is ready for the Vancouver winter, schedule an appointment with our professional and trustworthy mechanics at Clarke’s European.