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9 Steps to Get Your Car Ready for Winter

The long Canadian winter can be tough on our vehicles, but it doesn’t have to be! Before winter arrives in full swing, it’s important to prepare your car for poor driving conditions caused by snow, slush, ice, and frigid temperatures. Here are nine steps to get your car ready for winter:

  1. Top up your windshield washer fluid with a de-icing formula. Summer windshield washer fluid or bug remover windshield washer fluid can freeze in its tank or when you spray it onto your windshield on a cold day. Ensure you use a winter-specific windshield washer fluid instead, and always keep an extra bottle in your trunk and in your garage or house. Once the temperatures drop to single digits, consider switching to a winter-specific windshield washer fluid.

  2. Replace worn wiper blades or install winter wiper blades. If your wiper blades leave your windshield streaky, you should consider purchasing new blades. It is always a good idea to swap your summer wiper blades with heavier, winter-specific ones that will wipe away ice and snow more easily.

  3. Get your vehicle oil sprayed. Regular oil spraying helps to rust proof your vehicle, which can extend the integrity of your vehicles body.

  4. Check your brakes. When the roads are covered in snow and ice, stopping takes extra care. Consider taking your vehicle to a mechanic to ensure your brake pads are in good shape. Don’t forget to leave lots of extra space between your car and the one in front of you when the roads are snowy, slushy, or icy.

  5. Test your heat and defrost systems. Before the cold weather comes, turn on the heat in your vehicle and make sure your vehicle gets warm. If you suspect it’s not getting as warm as it should, call your mechanic and make a service appointment to have the system inspected.

  6. Swap your all-season or summer tires for winter tires. All-season and summer tires can stiffen and start losing their elasticity as the temperature drops, which can lead to decreased traction. Winter tires, on the other hand, are designed to provide better traction, braking and handling during frost, snow, and slush – and especially under icy conditions.

  7. Check your battery. Cold weather drains your battery power which can cause difficulties starting your vehicle. Some signs your battery is failing include lagging engine crack, failing electronic accessories, or dim headlights in interior dome lights.

  8. Check your exterior lights. Do a circle check of your vehicle to make sure all of your lights are working. You’ll want to check your brake lights, daytime running lights, headlights, turn signals, and high beams. If you notice anything isn’t working, be sure to promptly replace the bulb.

  9. Prepare an emergency roadside kit. A broken-down vehicle in the middle of a snow storm is a worst-case scenario for any driver. Be sure you have a stocked emergency roadside kit in your vehicle which includes a blanket, extra warm clothing, non-perishable food, water, among other items.

Preparing your vehicle in advance will help you combat whatever winter throws your way. It’s also important to remember to ensure you have the proper auto insurance coverage on your vehicle. Should you have any questions about your auto insurance coverage or would like to request a quote on auto insurance from Ayr Farmers Mutual, please contact our Agents or Brokers.

Disclaimer: The information provided on this blog is for educational purposes only and is not intended as professional insurance advice. The coverage, terms, and conditions of each insurance policy are unique and subject to individual circumstances. The information provided does not guarantee the availability or suitability of any insurance policy for your specific needs. You should not rely on the information in the blog as an alternative to professional advice from your Insurance Broker or Insurance Company. If you have any specific questions about any insurance matter, please consult a Licensed Insurance Agent or Insurance Broker for personalized advice and guidance.

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