Insure your safety: Winterize your car

Posted by Jim Pietro on Dec 15, 2014 12:29:00 PM

winterize car

It's no secret that harsh winter storms bring high risk when driving on snow or ice covered roads. Or that winters can be brutally cold in Massachusetts. But is your vehicle prepared?

Following these tips can help keep you and your family safe this winter.

Check or replace your fluids. Just like you, your car needs fluids. According to Motor Trend, "your car's oil needs to be thick enough, clean enough and fresh enough to provide engine protection in the dead of winter". Make sure that you have the proper grade oil for your engine. Make sure your coolant is a 50-50 water and antifreeze mix to avoid freezing and damage to your engine. Your brake fluid and brakes should be checked as well.

Check your battery. Cold weather can really put a strain on your car's battery. Many auto part stores will test it for free. If your battery is more than 3 years old, be sure to have it tested before you're stranded on the coldest day of the year.

Check your heater and defroster. Don't wait until ice is building up on your windshield to find out that your defroster isn't working.

Replace your windshield wiper blades. Upgrading to a winter blade that can handle the weight of snow can make big difference. And don't forget the windshield washer fluid. It's a good idea to carry an extra bottle in the car.

Check your tires. You need good tread for traction on snow or ice - even if you have all-wheel-drive. You can use a penny to check your tread. Stick a penny in the thinnest part of the tire's tread with Abe Lincoln going head first. If his head is uncovered you probably need new tires.

Fill your gas tank. It's best to keep your tank at least half full all winter, for safety concerns and to avoid freezing fuel lines.

Check your auto insurance policy. Do you have adequate coverage? Talk to one of Mid-State Insurance's licensed representatives in Worcester or Taunton BEFORE you have an accident.

Prepare a winter safety kit. If you do become stranded, having these items can help keep you safe.

 

 

Topics: winter safety, Mid-State's Blog, auto insurance

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