Here are a few simple ways to make this winter a better time (some tips for keeping your car or truck in great shape)…
Monitor Tire Pressure.
It’s always a good idea to check tire pressure regularly because tires will lose some air over time. This is especially important in the colder months since tire pressures will get lower as the temperatures drop. An under-inflated tire will not handle properly and will wear incorrectly.
Many people think you should inflate the tires to the “maximum psi (pounds per square inch)” on the tire’s sidewall, but that is incorrect. Each model of car or truck has its own tire pressure requirements, and that’s why there is a sticker like the one shown below on the driver’s door jamb (or door edge) on every car, SUV and light truck vehicle built in the last few decades. The numbers on that sticker are set by the Federal Dept. of Transportation and the vehicle manufacturer, so you can be sure the numbers are right for your vehicle, no matter what brand of tire you put on it.
InSite OilChange checks your tire pressure every time we do an oil change, and we always add air or adjust the tire pressure as needed. You can also stop by a tire store – most will check the air pressure free of charge (of course, they may try to sell you some tires). Or, you can get your own gauge – they don’t cost much – and check your tires regularly. Here are some examples:
Have your Battery tested.
A car battery’s power capacity decreases significantly in colder weather. Having a portable charger or some jumper cables is always a good idea. InSite OilChange can test your battery when we service your vehicle, or you can stop by any auto parts store and ask them to test it. If they say you need a new battery be sure to have them show you exactly why – their testing equipment should show the battery’s condition clearly. You can also buy a battery tester. Here are two examples:
Don’t wait until it’s raining to be sure you have good wipers.
Your wiper blades may look alright, but if they’re not supple and flexible they will streak badly, especially in cold weather. InSite OilChange can put new wiper blades on when we service the vehicle. Auto parts stores will usually install them for you, too, if you buy them there. Here are the two main types of wipers, standard or bridge type, and beam type. Beam wipers cost more but we’ve been seeing that not only do they do a better job, they generally last much longer than the old standard type.
Check your lights!
As you know, the sun comes up later and goes down earlier in the winter. Not only is it hard to see well without properly-working lights, but also, pedestrians and other drivers may not see you if your lights are not working. Turn them on when it’s dusky or dim out so that other drivers and pedestrians can see you coming. InSite OilChange often replaces light bulbs for people when we change their vehicle’s oil. As you can see below, having the lights on makes your car much more visible – turn them on for safety. See the automotive lighting guide links below to find the right ones for your vehicle. You can get them at Amazon or any auto parts store.