Winterizing Your Vehicle | Spirit Lake, IA
When winter gets as bad as it does in Iowa, it’s important to know how to winterize your vehicle. Follow the tips below and then head over to Motor Inn of Spirit Lake so our technicians can get your car in the best possible condition to survive the cold!
As temperatures drop, engine oil gets thicker, impacting the engine’s performance and its ability to turn over. Most cars use oil suitable for a wide range of temperatures, but as winters can get pretty rough in Iowa, that’s sometimes not enough. Check your owner’s manual to see if your engine has the right grade of oil for the time of the year, and if it doesn’t, ask our Motor Inn specialists to switch you to an oil that will work better in the cold.
There’s nothing worse than getting stranded when it’s freezing out. Always keep a winter emergency kit in your car so you can safely wait for help or stay warm while you work on the problem yourself. Pack jumper cables, extra antifreeze, non-perishable food and beverages, extra warm clothing (including a jacket, hat, socks, and boots), an ice scraper, fire aid kid, flares, spare batteries, and phone charger.
Cold temperatures majorly reduce your battery’s cranking power. At 0 degrees F, your battery has only about half of the cranking power that it does at 80 degrees. On top of that, the thicker engine oil makes it even harder to get the engine to turn over. That makes it all the more imperative that during the coldest months of the year, your battery is fully charged and in good operating condition.
With salt, dirt, mud, and all kinds of grime being kicked up in the winter, windshield wipers see a lot of use and can take quite a beating — not to mention all of the ice can form on the wipers and the windshield itself. To maintain visibility in the winter, make sure your car’s heater and defroster are working properly, that your exterior lights are not being blocked by snow, and that your windshield washer fluid has an antifreeze agent.
Many people who drive a car with AWD have a false sense of confidence in winter conditions. But AWD does not improve braking or steering performance on ice or snow. For that, you need winter tires. They use a special rubber compound and have deep grooves designed to provide better grip when the roads are cold or snowy. When you need to make an emergency maneuver, they can make the difference between safety and a crash.
Need winter car maintenance or more winterizing tips? Call Motor Inn of Spirit Lake at (877) 392-1398 to schedule a service appointment today!