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Winterize your Car

After consulting with experts from Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), CarPoint compiled this checklist to help ensure your car is "winter resistant."

Getting your vehicle in shape for winter driving is not as extensive—or expensive—as you might think. Below are a number of tips to help get your car ready for those chilly months. Many of these preparations can be done yourself.

  • Battery. Have your vehicle's battery inspected by a technician using professional equipment to ensure it has sufficient power.
  • Tires. In areas where snow and ice are facts of winter, install snow tires.
  • Windshield Wipers. Replace old, worn blades, and if your climate is harsh, snow (rubber-clad) blades can be an effective alternative.
  • Engine. Get drivability problems such as harsh idling and stalling repaired. Replace old air and fuel filters as well as a faulty positive crankcase ventilation (PCV) valve.
  • Anti-Freeze/Coolant. Make sure the condition, level and concentration (usually a 50/50 mix of anti-freeze and water) of your vehicle's anti-freeze is appropriate. Consult the maintenance schedules of CarPoint's Personal Auto Page to see at what mileage interval your car's cooling system should be flushed and replenished.
  • Fuel. Maintain a gas level of at least half-full. A full gas tank helps keep moisture from forming and also adds a beneficial weight increase.
  • Oil. Change your car's oil according to the manufacturer's recommended intervals. In extreme conditions, switching to synthetic oil, which is less susceptible to thickening, can be advantageous. Consult the maintenance schedules of CarPoint's Personal Auto Page to verify the mileage interval for your car's oil changes.
  • Heater/Ventilation/Air Conditioning. In order to drive safely and comfortably, your vehicle's HVAC systems need to be in good working condition to keep the cabin dehumidified.
  • Lights. Inspect all lights, replace burned-out bulbs and clear any grime that has accumulated on the lenses.
  • Exhaust System. Your vehicle's exhaust system should be inspected for leaks. Take it to a professional who can place it on a lift and examine the system properly.


Courtesy of MSN CarPoint