3 Tips to Maintaining Your Car in The Winter
Drivers are 20% more likely to be in a traffic accident in winter than at any other time of the year. The rate of accidents over this period increases because of several reasons. One of them is poor visibility during winter. The condition of most roads in winter is another one. More specifically, the road can be bare, partly covered, or covered. Driving on partly covered or covered roads can be dangerous because you lose traction as you travel on snow. Bare roads can be slippery as well. Therefore, you have to be careful when you are driving on any road in winter. Maintaining your car improves your chances of avoiding a road accident during this time. Here are 3 tips to maintaining your car in winter.
1. Check Your Car Battery
Your car has a lead-acid battery that stores energy to power electrical circuits in the car. It works in a broad range of temperatures. However, it performance dips when exposed to extreme temperatures. Winter exposes it to extreme drops in temperature. More specifically, a recent study by Industrial Battery Products revealed that the capacity of a lead acid battery drops by 20% in freezing weather. The study also found that this capacity sinks by 50% when the temperature falls to -220 Fahrenheit. Therefore, your car battery should be your number one priority when it comes to car maintenance in winter. Check it to see if it works. Jump-start your car if it will not start because of a flat battery. Replace the battery if necessary so that it does not die on you while you are on the road.
2. Top-Up Your Antifreeze
Antifreeze, also known as engine coolant, has three primary functions in a car. One of them is keeping your engine warm in the summer and another one is preventing corrosion in the engine. The third is preventing the same engine from freezing in winter. Unfortunately, many people dilute their engine coolant in summer to cool their engines and then forget about this dilution in winter. Doing so is dangerous because it means that the likelihood of your engine freezing in winter is high. Remember, the ratio of water to antifreeze in an engine coolant should be 1:1. Increasing this ratio to 3:2 is an excellent idea in some cases. Therefore, correct any previous dilution of this coolant in summer or spring by topping up your antifreeze.
3. Check Your Tires
As previously mentioned, the risk of drivers losing traction while they are driving in winter is high. This risk increases because snow is slippery and it melts into water, which is slippery as well. That means that you can easily skid off the road or onto other vehicles on the road. The best defense that you have against a slippery road in winter is a well-maintained tire. Remember, tires are critical when it comes to steering and braking. Effective braking and steering are only possible if the tires have the right pressure and tread depth. The recommended tread depth for a tire in winter is 3mm. In most cases, the legally mandated depth is 1.6mm. You can learn more about car maintenance tips and diagnostics in winter by visiting